Last night in Los Angeles, Square-Enix put on an extremely lavish show in Los Angeles showcasing Final Fantasy XV, rolling out celebrities and expensive-sounding promotions left, right and centre. A few hours on, I still can't get over the sheer amount of money the company must have spent on all of this. It was all live-streamed on Twitch, if you have about three hours to spare, but if you don't, I've helpfully summarised the most important things below.
Here are some of the things that Square-Enix announced at its prime venue in Los Angeles, which in itself must have cost a fortune:
- A Final Fantasy custom-made Audi R8
- A five-part Final Fantasy XV anime series detailing the origin story of the four main characters' friendship, available for free
- A ridiculously good-looking Final Fantasy feature-length film, starring Lena Headey (Cersei from Game of Thrones), Aaron Paul (of Breaking Bad, bitches) and Sean fucking Bean. It's called King's Glaive.
- A theme tune by Florence and the Machine, covering Stand By Me in typical wispy style
- Several different mobile games that tie into the main game
- A free demo, and two very expensive-looking special editions
In the room on the night, the 6,000-odd gathered Final Fantasy fans did a very good job of acting surprised and delighted about the September 30th release date, even though it was accidentally leaked earlier in the day. Final Fantasy luminaries Hironobu Sakaguchi, Nobuo Uematsu and others joined the director of FFXV, Hajime Tabata, on-stage over the course of the evening. For Final Fantasy fans, the whole thing was a dream line-up. For the rest of us, it was sufficient to pique interest in the new entry in the series, which looks a bit like an American road-trip movie as imagined by a Japanese teenager in the 1990s.
The final revelation of the event, as illustrated in the video above, was that the car you drive in FFXV can transform into a flying car. Given that Square-Enix has spent basically a decade working on this game, you can't really blame them for making such a fuss.
A new demo for Final Fantasy XV, the Platinum Demo, has just become available to download. It is a 25-minute-long dream sequence that shows off the final game's tech, including the day-night cycle, combat system, weather effects, vehicles, and creatures that will be present in the final game. It's worth a download, particularly as it's free - though bear in mind that it's more technical demo than a slice of the final game.
Square-Enix is clearly investing millions in trying to ensure that FFXV makes a big impact. Given how long the game has spent in development, that is hardly surprising - the company will want to recoup its investment, even if that means paying Aaron Paul and Lena Headey to voice characters in the tie-in CG film.
We'll have more from LA later tonight, as FFXV's development staff answer questions about the game, and presumably try to avoid actually saying how much all of this has cost.