One of Square Enix’s more frustrating tendencies is how it will create wonderful and elaborate graphic engines designed specifically for the flashy, big-budgeted RPGs its famous for, and then only use them once before moving on.
For example, Crystal Tools was supposed to be the foundation for a generation of Square Enix RPGs, but then Final Fantasy XIII went through countless delays. Square Enix was unable to allocate the resources anywhere else, and it was only ever used to back up it and its originally unplanned sequels.
Dragon Quest X also uses Crystal Tools, but North Americans certainly don’t realize that. Final Fantasy XIV originally did before it was nuked and restarted.
Now we have the Luminous Engine following in the same footsteps. The engine is powering Final Fantasy XV, but Square Enix has recently abandoned it for the more convenient powers of Unreal Engine 4 in other major projects like Kingdom Hearts III and Dragon Quest XI.
Add another casualty to the list. Final Fantasy VII Remake, arguably the company’s most ambitious game since the original Final Fantasy VII, will not be using its premium graphic engine. Final Fantasy XV‘s director chimed in during an interview with Nova Crystalis, stating as much.
“Final Fantasy VII (Remake) is not planned to be made with that [Luminous Engine],”
Can’t get more blunt than that! Why waste all those resources to make the engine in the first place, anyway? That’s just the way the world works now, I suppose. Unity, Unreal, all of the major graphic engines are capable of producing professional grade games, even for the professionals.
I’m not suggesting that Square Enix should abandon making its own engines, because they are among the best in the world when put to good use, but maybe that would be time and resources better spent on story, characters and design. Who knows the right answer here.
Final Fantasy VII Remake will be available on the PlayStation 4 first somewhere down the line.