Final Fantasy has been making its way at an alarming rate onto mobile devices, and next up is one many fans regard as the absolute best. Series producer Takashi Tokita confirmed with Kotaku that the beloved Final Fantasy VI will be making its long expected appearance on iOS and Android.
More than just a straight port, Tokita said that a few tweaks have been made since the original 1994 SNES release.
"The battle systems have been altered for the other [mobile remakes] for Final Fantasy and VI will be the same. For instance grinding was an issue and people had to spend a lot of time leveling up. Now on the mobile devices the battle systems have been adjusted so you don't have to fight as much and can enjoy the game for what it is."
Which I suppose is fine for a more casual audience, although Final Fantasy VI is the easiest in the series and requires very little grinding if none at all to beat. Where Tokita is going overboard is with the updated graphics.
Casting aside the 2D sprites of old, the new Final Fantasy VI will see sharper high resolution art designed for cellphones, very similar to the Final Fantasy V remake that was released earlier this year.
Final Fantasy VI has long been defined by its brilliant art direction with each character able to show a wide array of emotions through just a tiny sprite. Joy, laughter, sadness, anger, the sprites used in Final Fantasy VI go beyond simply being nostalgically 2D. There is a genius level of creativity in each frame of the game to fit so much into so little.
Limitations create boundaries, and meeting exceeding those boundaries is what makes the great games last forever. The ease of technology these days erases that adversity, and that's why many of these final products comes off as more like cheap imitations rather than an upgrade of their classic inspirations.
I will be really saddened if Final Fantasy VI's legacy is left scared when Terra, Locke, or Sabin end up looking like a Zenonia character or an Angry Bird. I hope Square Enix can look beyond the ease of cheap high resolution art and truly see what "updating" Final Fantasy VI's graphics mean.
This release goes in store with the Final Fantasy Legacy, which Square Enix is saying will promote the series' rich history to a younger generation of gamers who did not get to experience these masterpieces the first time around. The next to be released is a 3D remake of Final Fantasy IV: The After Years.
Should the legacy continue to be a success, Tokita says he wants to revisit Final Fantasy VII.
"We have VII fans in our own company. If this Legacy project works out well, we would like to one day be able to work with VII."
Any takers on that last bit?