What's next for Final Fantasy? E3 is often the place to look for that answer. In the past Square Enix has saved the big reveals for the #Sony press conferences, it's where Versus XIII (later XV), World of Final Fantasy, and more importantly, VII Remake was announced. With E3 being all about surprises, Square Enix could unleash their biggest trump card yet with Dissidia Final Fantasy.
For those unaware, Dissidia Final Fantasy is an arcade fighting game inspired by two PSP titles of similar name: the original Dissidia and it's predecessor Dissidia Duodecim. The current iteration was made by Tecmo Koei's Team Ninja in partnership with #SquareEnix. You can check out the trailer below to get a taste of the action.
A PlayStation 4 Port Is More Than Just Speculation
When it comes to the possibility of a home console release, it's more than just speculation. #Dissidia was developed using modified PS4 hardware tools and Square's Japanese branch even later went on to release a graphical comparison video of the game running on PS4 vs Arcade.
If that wasn't enough, when interviewed about a possible port, Dissidia producer Ichiro Hazama had this to say:
If there was a recent opportunity to make the announcement, I thought the occasion was at the “Final Fantasy 30th Anniversary Opening Ceremony.” However, it didn’t make its appearance. Long story short, we’ve yet to prepare something with enough value to meet your expectations. I believe many are expecting a story mode for the home console version, and we’re definitely preparing that; however, our focus on the main game is still about battles and that won’t change. While continuing work on a proper competitive fighting tool and to improve on other elements, we’ll need a little more time.
Hazama is right to expect fans may want a story mode as the PSP games had a story mode with RPG elements such as leveling up and character customization that added to the depth of the games. The sequel even had a fully traversable world map. I personally logged in over 400 hours between both games and still haven't found every item, nor finished every achievement. If this new game has anywhere near the amount content and character progression of the previous titles, it'll be worth the wait.
Also, the "Opening Ceremony" Hazama was referencing was held January 31st so it has been a little more time, hopefully enough for an E3 reveal this year.
Director Believes Dissidia Has eSport Potential
Final Fantasy is a global brand. It's recognized by many gamers but to those not familiar or unwilling to get into the series because of it's turn-based roots, some additional exposure to it's more action-oriented games could change that – like say, eSports?
#DissidiaFinalFantasy director Takeo Kujiraoka said during the same interview that he believes the game could become an eSports contender:
Since the arcade version alone can’t reach all of our customers, that’s what we’re starting to prepare. Currently, eSports has been an exciting thing for everyone overseas, right? And regarding that, I believe we, too, can possibly make it there. By having everyone around the world enjoy a Final Fantasy with team battles, by exporting a highly proficient competitive tool, then perhaps we can even make it one of the exciting parts of an eSports event. The next step after that would be to have competitions for it on a global scale. I can’t say much more about it, but with those ambitions we’d like to continue making Dissidia Final Fantasy into a better game.
It's pretty ambitious but considering the game's developer is Team Ninja, makers of the Dead or Alive games, some of which have made it to EVO: Dissidia Final Fantasy could do the same. Announcing this at E3 would be sure to excite eager fans. If so I'm already prepared to sell my soul.
Dissidia Could Be The Series's 30th Anniversary Title
If there weren't any other reasons to announce the game at this year's E3, this alone should do it: 2017 marks the series's 30th anniversary. What better way to honor the series than having fan favorite characters duke it out?
Dissidia features characters, music, and stages from across the franchise making it the perfect celebration of all things #FinalFantasy – it's a much better way to celebrate the series than a special fork.
Right now we can only hope the home console release is in a state the folks at Square find acceptable to show the public. Maybe they can announce it alongside a Final Fantasy VIII Remake. Now that would be the proper way to celebrate a 30th anniversary.
Are you hoping for a surprise Dissidia announcement? What else would you like to see from Square Enix this year? Let me know in the comments!