This morning, the official site of Final Fantasy XVI unveiled a message from Naoki Yoshida, producer of the game but also director and producer of Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn, about the lack of official information around the title this year. In this long message, he explains that “development has been delayed five to six months due to the COVID-19 pandemic“ because “a large part of the internal team has switched to telecommuting” and “was unable to transmit its instructions to our partners in a timely manner“, which caused the delay of”certain elements created abroad” as well as “contract cancellation requests“. Despite this delay, the producer reassures by announcing that new information about the game will be unveiled “around spring 2023“. In the meantime, if you want to know more about what we already know about the title, we had already made a point of all the information disclosed until then a few months ago.
What we note first of all with this new message, is that Naoki Yoshida applies once again the method used with Final Fantasy XIV, that is to say playing transparency with the public by not hesitating to go into the details of the development, something quite rare on the side of Japanese industry. As a reminder, this is a habit that the producer took after recovering the FFXIV project in this alarming state in an attempt to regain player confidence after the chaotic version 1.0 launch. A method that seems to have borne fruit given the powerful link that today links the developers of the title to their community. For this reason, the message explains both the reasons for the production delay and the state in which it is found:
We are working on improving the quality of graphics resources, tweaking the overall combat system and each battle on an individual scale, finishing the cutscenes of the main storyline and optimizing the graphics. In the coming months, we plan to patiently improve the game by fully testing it ourselves extensively.
– Naoki Yoshida, Producer of FINAL FANTASY XVI
We therefore understand that the game is already in an advanced state, enough for the developers to be able to show new images in spring 2023. A choice of date which seems quite logical since the beginning of the year will be particularly busy on the side of Square Enix. In shambles, we can cite TRIANGLE STRATEGY (Tactical-RPG developed exclusively for Switch) by the Octopath Traveler team on March 4, Stranger of Paradise Final Fantasy Origin (spin-off in the vein of Nioh developed by Team Ninja who takes place in the world of the first Final Fantasy) on March 18, and especially Forspoken (open-world with magical powers developed by elders of Final Fantasy XV) on May 24. Thus, if the communication around Final Fantasy XVI had started earlier, it would only have obscured these other projects necessarily much less expected than a new numbered episode of the flagship saga of the publisher.
With this project, Naoki Yoshida once again wants his teams to take their time to make sure they deliver the best end product when the game comes out. This is what happened recently with Endwalker, the latest expansion to date Final Fantasy XIV. While the launch was set for November 23, we learned on November 6 that it was postponed to December 7 (only two weeks later) since the director believed that it was still possible to improve the quality of this news. adventure. With FFXVI, it is therefore the same reasoning that applies here, especially after the return of some players who had criticized the technical aspect of the title when it was announced, pushing the producer to say that the trailer could not be fine-tuned because of too short a delivery time.
Given all of its information, we can therefore try to guess the exit window of the title. First of all, Naoki Yoshida had indicated earlier in the year that he wanted there not to be too much time between when the game would be talked about again and the day it was released so that players don’t have to wait too long. This was particularly what happened with Final Fantasy Versus XIII announced in 2006 which was finally released in 2016 after becoming Final Fantasy XV in the process. Knowing that the producer gives us an appointment next spring, between March and June therefore, a release in the months that follow such as the end of year 2023 holidays therefore seems possible. But since this new message evokes a delay of half a year, we could even expect a release in early 2023, but nothing is less certain. In any case, see you next spring for certain information on Final Fantasy XVI.