Final Fantasy XV at E3 2016: Trailers, VR, and ATR
Brendan    2016-06-17, 03:02 am.

With Final Fantasy XV just over 3 months away from becoming a reality, Square Enix's flagship title put in an unusual appearance at this year's E3. A new trailer debuted during Sony's conference, containing mostly recycled footage of areas and combat encounters that viewers have seen previously. This time the familiar footage came with a twist: a Playstation VR experience inspired by segments of the game is in development.

Unfortunately, the virtual reality companion experience isn't what you might expect from any Final Fantasy game. Writing for The Verge, Andrew Webster described the VR segment as decidedly anticlimactic:

There isn't all that much strategy involved: you simply shoot as fast as possible, and move when the beast charges at you. (Actually, you don't even need to move, as the monster doesn't really do any damage when it attacks). If you hit it in the head, it'll die a bit faster; if you warp up to high ground, it can give you a slightly better perspective. It takes just a few minutes to get through the whole fight.

It's a fine, if short, example of a VR light gun-style game, but it doesn't feel particularly Final Fantasy in any way. There are lots of things FF fans would want to see from a VR experience, and it's hard to imagine "generic shooter" is near the top of the list for any of them. Given the beautiful, expansive world the game takes place in, some sort of exploratory aspect would've been much more interesting.

But, as if that wasn't enough, Hajime Tabata took to the stage during Microsoft's press event while Mat Kishimoto, a marketing manager for Square Enix North America, played through the Titan encounter...live.

It went about as well as could be expected of watching someone else play a videogame that you've been waiting a decade to get your hands on—which is to say, it was extremely awkward. For what was, presumably, meant to be a moment where Final Fantasy XV could shine on the Xbox One, especially when Sony has persistently stolen the console spotlight in that regard, Microsoft's demonstration fell flat.

Backtracking ever so slightly, in the minutes after Sony's keynote on Monday night, Tabata released another Active Time Report which--at this point--is beginning to seem almost needless. On a more editorial note, I think Final Fantasy XV has definitely reached a saturation point where Square Enix risks removing some of the mystery and discovery given the constant barrage of info-dumps.

Who would've thought that Square Enix would one day have a problem with talking about Final Fantasy XV too often? Anyways, with Kingsglaive and Brotherhood set to accompany fans through the summer and across the finish line this fall, there's definitely no shortage of Noctis and crew. You can watch the full video below.




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