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Who is resposible for Final Fantasy series fall from grace

I have been doing a lot of research lately about Squaresoft, Square Enix and the Final Fantasy Series. What fans of Square say just doesn’t make sense. How can a great series like Final Fantasy go in so many bad directions after Final Fantasy X? How can a merging of two companies affect the quality of a series that’s known for great gameplay, storytelling, and characters? What I found wasn’t because of the company but rather a certain director.

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Colwyn1635d ago

Imo, the linear game-play chosen for ff13 is responsible for the lack of trust among fans for the series

Snookies121635d ago

I agree there, but the whole downfall began when other team members were given creative freedom on games starting from X-2. If you look at the people who did the writing and directing, they were not the same people who did the previous installments. X-2 had different people, 12 had different people, 13 had different people.

Hironobu is no longer with Square, it is a terrible loss, but the one man who can fill his shoes is Tetsuya Nomura. He NEEDS to have direct control over the Final Fantasy series. That is why I have such high hopes for Versus XIII, because he has control over that project. I know it will be fantastic!

WombBat1635d ago (Edited 1635d ago )

Agree with your statement, make nomura the next miyamoto in the way that he directs and produces a bunch of games simultaneously.

either that or start nurchuring some young talent and get them to direct. toriyamas games are just too feminine,cliche,bad ambiance, and just flat out doesnt have a final fantasy vibe to it.

good article by the by

Ranma11635d ago

FF is broken and isnt as great as it used to be. To fix it, Square Enix needs to do these things:

-Bring back strategic game play of FF1-10 (not FF13 which plays itself with auto battle)

-Hire some good script writers to make good stories like past FF's.

-Fire Wada and Toriyama !!!

-Bring back world map

-Bring back Airship, Chocobo's, Moogles for the FF vibe

-Bring back Mini games e.g gold saucer, tetra master, blitzball

-Secret/Hard bosses e.g Emerald Weapon. In FF13-2 you have to pay DLC to fight hard bosses like Omega weapon, which sucks !

....and Square Enix wonders why they have so much fan backlash

sikbeta1635d ago

It's Wada and always have been, Wada feel the same frustration Enix felt for years, Enix was a game company only known in Japan that never could expand to other territories, that frustration keeps going until these days in which Square-Enix make games to appeal the western with no real success in doing so.

OMEGAZONE1635d ago

But it doesn't all follow the same pattern because 12 was incredible and a true return to form. Critical claimed across the board and was given the Playstation gold seal.

So it's not like it's entirely the teams fault.

Scribe811635d ago

I agree. X-2 was the last console FF I played and the point where I stopped sheepishly buying Squaresoft products because of how terrible it was.

lumley6661635d ago

@Snookies12

everything you say is bob on :) i agree with everything, i just long for the day i play a ff game and im buzzing as much as i was with ff7,8,9 and 10

come on square, stop faffing with the formula and just make a propa ff game again :)

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 1635d ago
SuperLupe1635d ago

People are acting like FF13 is the first linear FF.

I have a feeling most people saying that it sucked because it was linear have never played a FF before this gen.

Freedom has NEVER been what FF is known for. Final Fantasy was great in the past because of the engrossing story, world and characters it offered, NOT because of the freedom it had.

I think Colwyn is comparing FF13 to games like the Elder Scrolls because he hasnt played any other FF games and therefore compares it to todays RPG standards that are dominated by WRPG characteristics.

IMO it's obvious that you are a newcomer to FF games if you think that FF13's main default was linearity. It was pretty much all the rest that made dissapointing, the linearity wouldnt have been a problem if the game was actually interesting like almost all other FF's.

BitbyDeath1635d ago

I didn't play the NES versions so 13 is the first linear FF game for me.

Major downfall of the series.

RedDead1635d ago

Linearity wasn't specifically the problem. Most people just put that point in place of the actual problem, which is the feeling that you have no point. For example, in linear shooters, you must move, because you do not want to get hit, it's part of the gameplay. In Final fantasies, you move around searching for the next way to go, talk to people, puzzles, secret area's, go play FF7 again you'll see the big difference. FFXiii, tell what the point in movement was? So you could walk to the next battle 10 meters in front of the last. That's the difference between FF and FFXIII. FFX was a mix of this and the older ones, but it got away with it because it had breaks from battles. And towns(temple's with puzzles) and people to talk to and blitzball for when you want a break.

The rest of the problems with the game are in my previous comments somewhere.

Biggest1635d ago

"go play FF7 again you'll see the big difference."

And there you go wrecking your point. Go back and play FF7. I restarted three days ago. Remember how you were where you were and had no choice until it was time to leave Midgard? Is that not the same linearity you're condemning now? Even when you get to the world map you can only go as far into exploration as the next town and chocobo farm. The only things you can do are A: Continue the story. B: Grind exp. The formula for Final Fantasy is pretty consistent throughout the series. FFXIII did remove towns and varied sidequests which is extra lame. But they are all linear for much of the game. Everything opens up near the end.

Panthers1635d ago

EVERY main FF game has been linear. There has never been a FF game that offers anything in the form of freedom as say Skyrim.

DragonKnight1635d ago

FF games have always had linearity, yes, but not to the extent of FFXIII. In ALL other FF games you could go around the towns talking with people, you could go back to towns if you forgot something (with some exceptions like in FFX you can't go back to Besaid until after Zanarkand but you can go back to Luca). Although the story would make you progress forward until a certain point, it never felt like being forced to walk in a straight line and avoid everything possible.

It also helps to have interesting environments to take your mind off the linearity. FFXIII lacked "life" until you got to Gran Pulse, so you were very much aware that you were walking in a straight line playing as characters you weren't interested in or even hated.

Megaman_nerd1635d ago (Edited 1635d ago )

@SuperLupe is true that FF games are linear but this? http://img4.sankakustatic.c...

COME ON!! <_<

At first you didn't have much freedom in FFVII but then you got an airship and could do the gold chocobo sidequest, go to the golden saucer, do the knight of the round side-quest, do the ultimate weapon side-quests, fight the weapons that were scattered around the world-map, do the side-quest about defending the egg that played like a strategy game, etc.

There's a huge difference in freedom when you speak about FFXIII and compare it to the older ones people. So stop twisting things trying to say that older FF games played like corridor shooters because the only freedom you had on FFXIII was on Pulse and you could do crap there. Just grind like crazy....

Pozzle1628d ago

@Biggest: It isn't necessarily the linearity that is the problem with XIII, but the FEELING that you get while playing the game.

Games like FFVII and FFX don't FEEL linear (even though they are) because it always feels like you're progressing through the story and exploring a vast world...and when you aren't doing those things, you can still wander around towns, breed chocobos, explore caverns, complete sidequests. In FFXIII all you do is run from point A to point B, sometimes with very few cutscenes in between. So it doesn't feel like you're progressing through a story or exploring a vast and exciting new area. It just feels like you're running from the start of the game to the end of the game...with a bunch of random encounters thrown in between.

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 1628d ago
iamtehpwn1635d ago

A couple of things That I can think of:

1) Yoichi Wada--While many of Square Best like Kitase, Tabata and Nomura are still there, Wada has proven time and again that he isn't properly managing this company.

2) Toriyama directing the main series--He's not an entirely bad director. But Tabata (The man behind Final Fantasy Type-0) is a much better director. Kitase was also the director of 7, and he's quite excellent as well. Toriyama's biggest games have been X-2 and XIII. He's a nice guy, but he should be the one working on FF side games

3) The Departure of Sakaguchi - The man with the original vision has left. If you notice, Lost Odyssey and Blue Dragon, had more Final Fantasy elements than XIII did. He was the soul of Final Fantasy.

I think Final Fantasy CAN rise again, but it's going to take square willing to re-evaluate, and Wada willing to stand up as a leader and set the bar high for the teams working there.

dboyman1635d ago

Instead bring back Sakaguchi and get rid of Wada...

Snookies121635d ago

If only it were possible to bring back Sakaguchi... Though as I said before, if Tetsuya Nomura were given full creative freedom with every Final Fantasy from this point on, they'll rise again. I'm completely confident in that.

iamtehpwn1635d ago

@Snookies--Nomura has stated that after Final Fantasy Versus XIII, he wants to focus exclusively on developing Kingdom Hearts games. So I don't think that'll happen.

I think Kitase should return as director. He was the director of VII, and he did a damn good job.

sikbeta1635d ago

@iamtehpwn

Totally agree

@dboyman

Sakaguchi is about to kill its new company, would be awesome if he comes back, but
I don't see it...

Flavor1634d ago

Superiority of western game titles is what doomed FF series. The Japanese cannot match us in budget, or talent pool, or technology, or market access.

Japanese games are flimsy and shallow compared to alot of western games, and worst of all, they refuse to adapt and innovate.

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 1634d ago
Ranma11635d ago (Edited 1635d ago )

They must fire Wada and Toriyama to move forward

LiquifiedArt1635d ago

I'll tell you...

ZIDANE,
QUINA,
TIDUS,
VAAN,
HOPE

Character designed has degraded indefinetly.

DrRobotnik1635d ago

More like recycled. How many Cloud clones are there going to be?

Biggest1635d ago

But none of the names he listed were anything like Cloud so...

LeShin1635d ago

Agree with Biggest. Cloud was withdrawn, cold hearted and generally unsociable most of the time. Those characters that LiquifiedArt mentioned are NOTHING like that. Closet fit to Cloud I think would be Squall. I personally think that there reason there is so much love for Cloud is he wasn't the usual 'happy go lucky' character looking for adventure you got usually in an JRPG.

Pozzle1628d ago

"Agree with Biggest. Cloud was withdrawn, cold hearted and generally unsociable most of the time."

I don't really agree with that tbh. Cloud was pretty outgoing and friendly throughout FFVII (once you leave Midgar). Hell, one of the first things he does once they reach Kalm is explain to everyone what happened in Nibelheim. He isn't super chatty like Yuffie or even Cid...but he isn't overly quiet like Vincent or Squall. He was just a regular guy.

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Deputydon1635d ago

In my opinion Square has been going downhill since they merged with Enix. The days of rpgs like Xenogears, Chrono Series, and FF 6-9 are gone. Secret of Mana was the last good 'mana' game. Star Ocean went to crap after 2. Dragon Quest 8 I will say is probably the best game squareenix has out out in years and everyone seems to have forgotten about it because it had at first glance an 'ancient' battle system.

Sure FFX was good, but I really don't think game play wise it was up to par with 6-9.

Pushagree1634d ago

Xbox 360 ruined FF games. If it were exclusive to ps3, it would have been much better.

Not even trolling. Thats the truth.

+ Show (4) more repliesLast reply 1628d ago
Optical_Matrix1635d ago

Wada. The management at Square Enix is piss poor. The structure just isn't there. You have about 20 different projects going on at once with products and key people skipping to and from about 3 different games, it gets messy. The creativity is still there. You could see it trying to creep through in FFXIII, ever so slightly, but there is no unified force in SE to churn out blockbusters. They lack focus. Wada needs to be fired, and the development structure needs to be changed.

It's that simple.

MrWiggle1635d ago (Edited 1635d ago )

I wonder if Wada is like the Japanese version of Douglas Reynholm from the IT Crowd....running a company into the ground, while relying on other people to keep the company a float

http://www.youtube.com/watc...

dboyman1635d ago

I personally agree with you Optical_Matrix. Like he says, get rid of Wada, and the development structure needs to be changed.

Inception1635d ago

Definitely agree with matrix
hang Wada and i hope Square unmerged from Enix
this whole mess started when the two of them merging >.<

Megaman_nerd1635d ago (Edited 1635d ago )

I blame whoever let Toriyama be the director of a FF game. Just look at FFX-2 for god's sake....

edit: after reading this I found something funny. I don't know if I'm crazy but I swear I read this exact same article but written by a N4G user on his blog.

edit: http://n4g.com/user/blogpos...

Only good thing about FFX-2 was its battle system because everything else was really bad. I don't know about you but I couldn't stomach that Charlie's Angels vibe and the game couldn't be more cheesy and corny and the story was so bad is not even funny. And I mean bad story like totally pointless, retarded and unnecessary.

How can a franchise go from something like FFVI to FFX-2 is simply mind-blowingly.

gnvr1635d ago

FFx-2 was good man. FF13 was pretty good too

RememberThe3571635d ago

FF13 wasn't bad IMO either. It wasn't nearly what I thought it'd be and the lack of town made the whole world feel so small. I liked the graphics, gameplay, and all that, but the world itself felt so empty and boring. It was the first FF I actually beat but I have more memories from FF11 than I do from FF13.

PshycoNinja1635d ago

Yup I wrote both. GNVR liked it so much they asked me to put it on their site so I did.

LeShin1635d ago

You're good Megaman_nerd as I couldn't even bring myself to buy FFX-2 because of the campiness/cheesiness! In fact, that and Final Fantasy 14 are the only FF's I haven't played.

Pozzle1628d ago

"I blame whoever let Toriyama be the director of a FF game. Just look at FFX-2 for god's sake...."

And if that isn't proof enough, just look at The Third Birthday. Does Toriyama DELIBERATELY want to butcher already-established worlds and characters?!! Because it certainly seems that way! D;

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Bundi1635d ago

It's either Tom Cruise or Global Warming

versusALL1635d ago (Edited 1635d ago )

I don't know why everyone is saying all these things like Square sucks this gen or Final Fantasy is dead. First off I'm one of the few who enjoyed Final Fantasy XII and XIII. I thought XIII was the one of the best rpgs this gen.

And while there haven't been much console realises that are memorable, there hand-held titles are. And for the record, I am stoked for XIII-2

FFXI1011635d ago

"XIII was the one of the best rpgs this gen"

I disagree with you, XIII is no way the best RPG this gen. There are other RPGs better than XIII.

Lost Odyssey, Elder Scrolls Oblivion, Fallout 3, Skyrim, Valkyria Chronicles these are the ones I can think of now. I'm sure there're others out there that was more fun or better than the XIII.

cemelc1635d ago

Dont forget mass effect, the witcher, demon/dark souls, deus ex, dragon age 1.

All of them better games than XIII.

LeShin1635d ago

I'd take out Elder Scrolls Oblivion out of that list, only because the main quest was boring and predictable as hell. I bought the game of the year edition, took me a year to finish all of the add on packs, and though I liked exploring, I'm into epic stories...which is why I'm not sure about purchasing Skyrim.

I'd recommend Eternal Sonata as a replacement. Playing through Resonance of Fate now, we'll see how that fares...

versusALL1634d ago

@FFXl101
I said it was "ONE" of the best this gen. I happen to like most of the games you listed as well.