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Square Enix reveals new real-time tech demo using DirectX 12 By Erren Van Duine on April 30, 2015 at 2:39 PM

Square Enix announced and revealed a new tech demo today known as WITCH CHAPTER 0 [cry], which has put together the latest graphics technology in DirectX 12 to present a different side of Agni’s Philosophy.

As a part of a research project that studies a variety of next generation technologies, Square Enix conducted extensive research on real-time CG technology utilizing DirectX 12 in collaboration with Microsoft and NVIDIA, makers of high-end graphics technlogy. The results of this research will be incorporated into Square Enix’s Luminous Studio engine, and is intended for use in future game development.

WITCH CHAPTER 0 [cry] was created by much of the same team who worked on Agni’s Philosophy – the next generation tech demo revealed at E3 2012.

“Our team has always pursued cutting-edge pre-rendered and real-time CG,” commented Hajime Tabata, head of the next-generation technology research project and Division Executive of Business Division II of Square Enix. “As a part of the technical development, we created this demo using world-class, real-time CG technology with generous support from leading-edge software and hardware providers – Microsoft’s Windows10/DirectX 12 and NVIDIA’s GeForce GTX. The efforts from this project will power future game development as well as Final Fantasy XV, currently a work in progress.”

“Square Enix is working on this next-generation research project as a showcase for our technology and creativity which will lead the future of Square Enix,” said Yosuke Matsuda, president and representative director of Square Enix. “The results will be used to further advance the quality and technical expertise of our games. We will continue to pursue this research on cutting-edge technologies including high-end real-time graphics using the innovative DirectX 12.”

The WITCH CHAPTER 0 [cry] demo video showcased at the Microsoft Build Developer Conference can be viewed below.

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  • ElAbuelo69

    SE are so good at FMVs…they never fail to amaze imo.

  • Octavio Valdez

    I really hope they release a PC version for FFXV would be awesome to take the game to further levels of fidelity

  • Mike Nieto

    Final Fantasy XVI stealth annound (second one)

  • Giovani Rene Zevallos

    it made me sweat

  • This is just AMAZING! Agnis is sooo beautiful and DAT graphics!!! I hope they’re planning into turning it in an actual game!

  • I knew they weren’t done with her.

  • Octavio Valdez

    I do hope this tech demos are reused as concepts for FFXVI, I mean if they don’t want to spend another decade developing the next entry in the series they might as well start conceiving the general ideas of their next game now. Hopefully the whole work on developing Luminous studio for FFXV can still be useful down the line.

  • Krijn van Alten

    Hopefully the don’t forget that there are also other elements in a game like gameplay, storyline, camera function, voice acting, sound, music….

  • James Stine

    Yes, please reuse the concept of crying girl, we don’t want to waste any time!

  • Noctis Pendragon

    He does not mean something like that .

  • Starlord

    You know, they keep reusing Agni a lot that it almost makes me think this “tech demo” is FFXVI with the code name of “Agni”. They could have made another tech demo that was completely different from Agni. Not only that, It’s “different” footage of Agni. I can only speculate that this tech demo is of a actual game in development, most likely FFXVI.

    I always did like Agni a lot, if it is FFXVI I would be really happy. ( maybe that’s the highlight of SE press conference since FFXV will be there in short supply.

  • James Stine

    Essentially, yes. I’m tired of seeing SE needing to recycle old assets to make new games. You can see my thoughts on this over on MognetCentral.

    http://www.mognetcentral.com/threads/square-enix-shows-witch-chapter-0-cry-tech-demo-by-ap-team.3851/#post-23017

  • stevenm281

    Does that mean that they will use DX12 for FF15?

  • 4FFAN

    So…Agni’s a witch??? o.O

  • stevenm281

    we know that since the first tech demo featuring her. Altho, I consider her more as a witch apprentice, she did have trouble to cast her lightning spell in the first tech demo.

  • Noctis Pendragon

    But the tech demo assest are new , and SE is doing that since long time even for FF VII , VIII and IX .

  • Noctis Pendragon

    MS won’t allow that , the ps4 is not allowed to use DX12 i have heard.

  • Adam Hedquist

    How I wish that they would be able to use this at it’s full potential for FFXV at 100%. If only they would make XV for pc only, I can’t help to think the game would be better for it. Hopefully they’ll release a pc version in the future that’ll be upgraded to it’s full potential.

  • Krijn van Alten

    For XV it’s to late I guess, the game is already too long in development. And even for a PC port (if there comes one) I don’t think they will do it, simply because of the fact that FF’s on the PC (apart form two MMO’s) are never that popular. It’s more likely they put this technology in XVI.

  • Krijn van Alten

    What you do is just wishfull thinking. I see it this way: why make an all new tech demo if you already have on? In that way you can completly focus on opimalising it instead of making completly new material.

  • Mehmed

    There is not much of a difference in this 3 years since the last tech demo in 2012 is there? Agni’s philosophy.

  • Nororu

    they can use DX12 on pc/xbone, it doesn’t matter, they can work with openGL on ps4.

  • Krijn van Alten

    But DirectX12 (and all the other API’s) are a tool to make games right? So, if SE makes a game with DirectX12 will it not be possible to play that game on the PS4?

  • Starlord

    But they could have used the same exact scene from the old Agni (DX11) and just add DX12, there is no need to add a new scene. That’s why I beg the question, why are they adding “new scenes” to the already existing ones? They are only showing off DX 12 after all.

    Also, said it’s speculation. I am not hyped about it no reason to. ( Except the the DX12 looks great.

  • 4FFAN

    I thought she was a mage…that’s what they usually call magic-users in FF games. They never actually said she was a witch in the first tech demo…but I like this term too x)

  • Jesus Christ

    Oh. My. Goodness. Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaassss

    That beauty! Bless her face! That’s Final Fantasy quality nose, skin, eyes and everything else right there!

    That cry is believable.

    Such a short video and it’s already better than Fianl Fantasy XV.

    Run away.

  • stevenm281

    well, its bound to be better, FF15 is processing/rendering so much gameplay elements and the game world is so big while this tech demo is not vast, there’s no gameplay, so all they have to render is graphics, of course it will be better, even if it would still be under DirectX11

  • stevenm281

    witch, mage, summoner, whatever, she is still a magic user.

  • Agni has such GREAT character design. PLEASE SQUARE ENIX MAKE HER THE PROTAGONIST OF FINAL FANTASY XVI!!!!

  • 4FFAN

    I knew she was a magic user…I didn’t know they would call her a witch that’s all 🙂

  • Zakee Khattak

    See, for a game to be made with DX12, the machine running it has to support DX12 as well. MS being MS, I don’t think they’ll allow whoever’s supplying Sony with graphics cards to support DX12. PS4, I believe, has to use OpenGL.

  • Zakee Khattak

    Hot damn. That required four graphics cards to do. Four.

  • Please don’t waste this character. She could be a red mage/summoner and star of FF16!

  • Not sure her name is Agni. Might be the name of her cult or the old man who died.

  • Exactly. Sometimes they do forget.

  • Let’s hope.

  • HalfLucan

    I would so play the shit out of Agni’s Philosophy. While Final Fantasy carries a lot of weight as a brand, i would like this to be its own side project, much like Type 0 and Kingdom Hearts.

    On a side note, as much as i am a console gamer, there needs to be a way to adopt the PC’s horsepower for the average consumer.

  • My God. That’s gorgeous. O.O

  • Sathil

    I personally wouldn’t mind it becoming a movie. It just looks too beautiful to pay attention to look at AND play at the same time. But then again, I am a gamer, just bring it out in some form!

  • Sathil

    I wouldn’t go as far as to say that its currently in development. With 15 having troubles actually going into full development after its premature announcement means they only have so much (they also have other help on 15 as well) manpower. KH3 still in the works, pretty sure they have a HD treatment team, all their other stuff, I would say that Agni’s Philosophy is a concept someone there has been flirting with for years and with these tech demos, it opens up a door to showcase that concept.

    Do note, I’m making judgements based on observations directly from memory. They could have just made something on the spot for the first tech demo then didn’t want to concept new ideas for this one in high detail.

  • Noctis Pendragon

    This is what i mean , they can swift FF XV to DX12 even if they wanted (and even if Luminous Engine is capable of utilising it) .

  • Noctis Pendragon

    She is a witch , something like Ultimecia (even the same style) and i am sure she will be in a game at this point .
    Or else it is slavery .

  • Sothe Zephyr

    Already more intrigued by the character design and personality, plot, setting, and well everything, more than i am with XV. SE just make this a game already -_-“

  • Sothe Zephyr

    FF16 should just be Agni’s Philosophy.

  • Noctis Pendragon

    They did call her Agni in thier survey .

  • Noctis Pendragon

    Maybe she becomes a witch in the end , it could really be its own Saga .

  • Noctis Pendragon

    I believe you man , they released a new Agni art this year and even gave her a story in this footage (wich + gloden crystal powers ) . Believe !

  • Noctis Pendragon

    Lol SE sure needs to make this game true (and surly will ) but i don’t see the plot etc you are talking about , only Agni the wtich is better than FF XV , the rest no at all .

  • Sothe Zephyr

    (It was a joke saying that XV’s plot is so forgettable and blah that this one has a better one; even though it doesn’t)

  • Noctis Pendragon

    Lol it is funny so .

    Both of them don’t really have any plot atm .

  • Kappa Aetheryal

    I want Agni in FFXV xD

  • HalfLucan

    I want Agni* *cough*

  • Nick Greeley

    What’s amazing is that it isn’t even an FMV; it’s rendered in real-time!

  • Oh okay. Good to have a name. She seems indian from india in clothes and that name. But her face and skin don’t so I though it was someone else. Odd we get her name but not the villains of FFXV.

  • Agreed

  • I want her to be the lead and even though she’s a witch to fight like a magical swordsman. High hp mp and mag atk pts. That’d be something new right now.

  • Noctis Pendragon

    I was imagining a Summoner + Magic FPS gameplay .

  • Ugh…..no way. FPS would mean we’d never get to see her character design in action. All we’d see if her damn hand. An action rpg 3rd person over the shoulder shooter maybe. But with rpgs dying out it needs to be an rpg if nothing else.

  • If this helps the old man who raised a gun to King Regis is Idola Aldercapt.

  • There’s plot already?

  • I know and that’s good. But all this ti.e and no info on anyone else. I hope they dont get brushed aside quickly without much development like yaag rosch and jihl nabaat in ff13.

  • Mehmed

    No, 2. They had 4 just for fun.
    They needed the power for 8k graphics.
    24 gigs of Ram. With hbm2 and 32 gigs along 5120 shader you’ll be able to play this… In 2016!

  • PhoenixAutomatic

    I am impressed by the real-time technology to render such high graphics even though it’s a really short scene. The lightning on those large golden crystals being materialized is phenomenal!
    Agni could be related to FFXVI, who knows? Although I hope she is.

    FFXVI might already be in production though I suggest many to this with a grain of salt. It’s mostly speculation.
    http://www.mognetcentral.com/threads/points-that-indicate-hiroyuki-ito-ffvi-ffix-ffxii-director-is-secretly-working-on-ffxvi.2277/

  • 4FFAN

    Did you read the read the article? It says: “The efforts from this project will power future game development as well as Final Fantasy XV, currently a work in progress.” They pretty much confirmed that FFXV will use DX12…even if it’s on PS4. They’re just going to incorporate the new technology in the Luminous Engine or something like that.

  • Noctis Pendragon

    It is written in the article but i can’t find the sources .

  • Zakee Khattak

    HOLY SHIIIIIEEEEET

  • Sothe Zephyr

    Read my comment below 😛

  • Noctis Pendragon

    It took SE 3 week to change Luminous Engine DirectX 11 to Luminous Engine DirectX 12: http://www.dsogaming.com/news/square-enix-on-dx12-it-took-around-three-weeks-to-get-the-basic-rendering-working-on-directx-12/ .

  • I know we heard her speak once in a different language, but what actress would yall get for ole Aggie?

    I’m thinking Lana from Smallville, Kristin Laura Kreuk.

  • Syafiq Khaidir

    Mind Blown. Everybody including me loves this character.
    So there are rumors that Agni have something to do with FFXVI?
    Man, the speculation of her being protagonist of FFXVI is really intriguing.
    She deserves to be in FFXVI.

  • stevenm281

    wtf, FF15 is in full development since July 2012…. they are almost done with the game, we’ll probably have the full game in a year from now.

    Main promotion for the game starts at Gamescom and usually they release their games 6 months to a year max after the main promotion begins.

  • NECPS

    It will take 10 years to release this game. Or rather.. chapter cry. huahahahahahaha

  • Sathil

    Yeah. Can’t wait

  • Syed Aliahsan

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lr6VoEdJbog Hey guy check out this
    breakdown video. I work hard on videos and hope you leave a like,
    comment and or Sub :). I credited NovaCrystallis in the description below.

  • James Stine

    Please stop spamming your videos on every post on here. I appreciate you making videos, but you have been told not to promote them like this.

  • James Stine

    They won’t, actually considering they’ve shown Agni twice now for tech demonstrations only would indicate that’s all she will ever be….

  • James Stine

    XV’s plot might be “forgettable” because we know virtually nothing about it beside the fact that there’s a crystal that gets stolen and you need to get it back. Typical plot for any Final Fantasy game honestly… So, I don’t get what you’re saying here.

  • Noctis Pendragon

    http://i.imgur.com/6PQTnDr.jpg

    They are making a plot , new models and teasing her power just for fun so .

  • James Stine

    There’s no proof that they’re making plot based on that image at all. This was simply a cash grab for SE to make this DX12 promotion for Microsoft.

  • If I was a casting director, I’d go with Courtnee Draper for the English dub! She was AMAZING in Bioshock Infinite and I’ve been dying to hear her take on another main role.

  • Noctis Pendragon

    The plot is based on the DX12 video , calling her a witch and making her cry than calling it Witch Chapt 0 is like adding plot to me .
    Or some background to work with .

  • That’s new. I’ll have to listen to her sometime.

  • James Stine

    Is that before or after Agnis has her Philosophy? They’re just names, dude. Agni’s Philosophy doesn’t mean anything either, we didn’t learn about what her Philosophy was.

  • Syed Aliahsan

    I’m promoting this website as well. I think if i make videos based on articles that the website posts and i credit them in the video and description, and post my link in the relevant articles ill be contributing to the article with my opinion expressed in the video. I really try hard on videos and i noticed if i don’t post my link anywhere i rarely get any views. I don’t always “just” post my link(though i admit i feel i have posted meaninglessly before and i apologize). I sometimes actually read articles and contribut my thoughts and ideas… i love this website and it’s community and want to inform the same community of my channel because i want that sort of audience subscribed to my channel. Once i again i apologize if I’m still considered to be “spam”… i really try not to be.

  • Syul

    I would be damn glad if she would get to be the main character of FFXVI, I think that what the little we’ve seen about Agni is AMAZING.

    I mean, just look at her. Her design is brilliant, what they showed graphically is impressive, and… OH GOD, her eyes. HER. EYES. I swear they give me chills, I love them. Also, her name is pretty amazing.

    If Square doesn’t make Agni’s Philosophy a real game, I sweat they’re just dumb xD

  • Sothe Zephyr

    Lawls fanboy over here xD Did you read my comment? Twas a joke. Also; im allowed an opinion. I don’t like XV. I hate the characters, the story, the gameplay etc. Imo, Agni’s Philosophy is better, even though its a tech demo lol 😀 (Saying that is a testament to how much iv grown to dislike, or rather, how XV has let me down) < its a joke and an opinion.

    Also, not really a typical plot. FF is known more for their deicide.

  • James Stine

    Agni doesn’t have substance, you are allowed your opinion, I think it’s just dumb. I’m allowed my opinion just as much as you are. Nothing personal against you or anything.

  • Sothe Zephyr

    XV doesnt have substance bruh. It’s literally a road trip xD

  • James Stine

    Except, that’s not true at all.

  • Sothe Zephyr

    Okay you’re correct, for a large chunk of the game, you’re on a road trip with your buds. The rest? Well, we don’t know….the game isn’t good enough after 9 years of prep to tell >.> Agni’s world, in the short time we’ve seen it, has given birth to an intriguing world, rich with mixtures of middle eastern influence and futuristic culture as well as magic and modern day weapons. Along with cultist activity, strange new magic techniques, interesting characters. XV…..GUNS! LEVIATHAN! WATER! SOLDIERS! OLD GUY IN RED CAPE! NOCTIS! STELLA…NO LUNA……NO, BOTH! Lol.

  • James Stine

    Sorry, but I completely disagree with what you’re saying here. I’ll leave it at that, we disagree with each other. Nothing wrong with that. I recommend trying the game out before you make a decision though.

    Take care.

  • Sothe Zephyr

    As for you, fanboy <3

  • Krijn van Alten

    Changing a engine is not the same as changing a game.

  • Noctis Pendragon

    They will abuse her in each new Tech demo then people will ask Agni even more than FF VII.

  • Noctis Pendragon

    Lol anyway everything we have seen from Agni was worked on like a movie , the amazing graphics are also helping to express a lot in a few minutes .
    The same about her design and her background .

    I am also sure FF XV CGI are at the same lvl (or higher) of Agni in term of everything .
    Even if Agni was a game they would not be able to keep this quality 60 hours , if Agni was a game like The Order it would be possible but it is likely an open world .

  • Noctis Pendragon

    Changing an API is not the same as changing an engine .

    Do you know FF XV is under Luminous engine and Tabata confirmed that FF XV will at least win something from DX12 .

    King of Mushu did switch from DX11 to DX12 in 6 weeks and 2 devs : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sV9aa_12Ap0 .

  • Noctis

    lol again this annoying guy

  • Syul

    Seems like it… xD

  • FranBell

    “What they showed graphically is impressive…” Of course its impressive, it’s running on 4 bloody Titan Xs. If she’s ever actually in a game, don’t expect her to look even a fraction of how good she looks on this tech demo (63 million polygons in her model alone).

    But I agree, her design is pretty cool and the world is intriguing. I hope AP actually gets turned into something in the future.

  • Syul

    Yup, you’re right on that xD

    Also, tons of people were actually hyped for AP because of just… 2 videos about AP. And why not to do a videogame with it. I mean, it’s not only Agni, everything they show us about it, it’s quite of mysterious.

    Plot twist: AP is FFXVI (?). Can you imagine it? xD I fantasize about that sometimes. But I would also love sooo much to see the XVI being a full medieval FF xD

  • Sothe Zephyr

    -looks at my comment, looks at yours- Wasn’t talking about graphics my friend haha 😉

  • Noctis Pendragon

    Me too i am talking about the fact that Agni is a movie and not a game so it is more oriented toward a good scenario , emotions etc …. and i am sure that FF XV CGIs ( worked on movies ) will be this much intressting and at the same quality .

    Just like FF XIII CGIs they were intressting and good but you can’t make a 60 hour game as good as a 10 min movie (CGI).

  • Sothe Zephyr

    Again though, im talking about the character design and setting. Im not comparing the game’s ability to capture interest in a cutscene.

  • Syafiq Khaidir

    EXACTLY MAN. Her Design is just freaking BRILIANT.

  • Syul

    That’s what I think x3

  • Krijn van Alten

    Stop defending yourself, you are not allowed to spam whatever the intention may be, end of story.

  • Krijn van Alten

    I rather have that then ppl who keep moaning about a VII HD release, or VII in general. It’s time to move on!

  • Noctis Pendragon

    Most of them are fake , the one who said “Please be excited ” was a real fan , the ps4 port of FF VII is the best version we would ever be able to get a remake would change the game too much.
    And what i hate about FF VII remake is the time and money wasted in a remake , they can do 1,5 new main FF game with this time and money .

  • stevenm281

    Actually, they could have incorporated the mods and make this the ultimate version, it would feel like a remake.