About Erren Van Duine

As a self-professed Final Fantasy fan, Erren created Nova Crystallis in 2009 as a place to collect the latest information on her favorite series. As owner and Editor-in-Chief, she also spends her time writing for RPG Site as Senior US Editor.

Mevius Final Fantasy updated with new screenshots


This week Square Enix has shared new details and further screenshots for their upcoming smartphone outing in Mevius Final Fantasy. Developed by the team at the company’s own 1st Production Department, producer Yoshinori Kitase and staff aim to bring forward a mobile title that evokes the feeling and effort of a work usually seen on consoles.

The story of Mevius involves a young man who suffers from amnesia. As a Warrior of Light, the hero travels to a desolate land known as Paramitia, unaware of his own past or what the future holds for him. He’s guided by a mysterious women trapped within a crystal, and a moogle who will tag along for the adventure.

The battle system in Mevius is executed by tapping the screen. The player has the ability to use spells and ability-strengthened spells such as Flame Blast. The game also features its own job system and we have our first look at both Ranger and Black Mage outfits and abilities. The Ranger doesn’t use a bow, but instead focuses on daggers with the ability to attack close-range and move quickly. The Black Mage, while having low health and strength, can hit with powerful magic spells.

Mevius Final Fantasy is due out this year for iOS and Android. A western release is also likely to be announced this year.

A look at the concept art behind Final Fantasy XV’s modern city


During the first leg in Square Enix’s planned lecture tours, Yusuke Naora sat down at SMU Guildhall to talk all things Final Fantasy art and his history with the series. Chief among them was an inside look into the development of Final Fantasy XV and the concept process involved in creating works for the Crown City of Insomnia, located in the modern kingdom of Lucis.

With regards to Final Fantasy XV the artists had to deal with physically based rendering, in addition to work on setting the boundaries of reality. The Imperial Palace, which we’ve seen since the original Versus XIII trailers, was modeled after the Tokyo Metropolitan Government building located in Shinjuku. Because it’s a palace they added in traffic circles for cars near the entrance but added a red carpet for ceremonies.

Because of the realistic world, the artists started collaborating with the CG team to find the right lighting. Naora even painted over real pictures of Tokyo to get this feeling.

Joining the art team alongside Naora include Isamu Kamikokuryou (FFX, XII, XIII), Tomohiro Hasegawa (FFVIII, IX, KH), and Yuki Matsuzawa (FFXIII). The game has three different art directors in total.

Tomohiro Hasegawa is in charge of art direction for enemies. He sculpted a model of the behemoth, which was aided by staff feedback before being scanned into the 3D workspace. A similar process was used for Leviathan where Hasegawa purchased real fish, dissected them and looked at how light and surface reflection worked on things like the scales.

Square Enix creates their own Let’s Play style video with Final Fantasy Type-0 HD


Square Enix UK is trying their hand at a popular YouTube format of information sharing – the Let’s Play style video. Today they’ve uploaded a nearly 19 minute long demonstration of the gameplay and combat found in Final Fantasy Type-0 HD.

According to their description, it’s the first in a new series so it’s likely we’ll be seeing more from them ahead of the game’s launch next month. Final Fantasy Type-0 HD launches in North America on March 17th, in Australia and Japan on March 19th and in Europe on March 20.

The dungeons and wildlife of Final Fantasy XV


During today’s Active Time Report Square Enix let loose a couple of new videos focusing on Final Fantasy XV Episode Duscae, it’s dungeons and wildlife.

Starting off with a bit of basic gameplay, the pre-recorded dungeon clip that follows takes Noctis and friends into a dark cavern where they face off against a horde of goblins. The team’s goal is to create the dangerous feeling of dungeons from Final Fantasy’s past.

The wildlife video – said to be done in the style of a BBC documentary – is titled “World of Wonder” and gives us an up-close and personal look at the game’s versions of chocobos, behemoths, frogs and other creatures that roam the land. Check them out for yourself below.

Final Fantasy Type-0 HD Gameplay Overview trailer


Square Enix has shared a new video and some screenshots today highlighting the English version of Final Fantasy Type-0 HD with a gameplay overview. The video offers up a good variety of what fans can expect including gameplay, cutscenes, a look at the world map and more.

The trailer features:

  • The history and environments of the war-torn Kingdom of Orience
  • The fourteen brave young warriors of Class Zero
  • The action-packed battle system, with customizable magic spells
  • The ability to summon fearsome monsters known as Eidolons

Square Enix America also confirmed the existence of the secret movie that will be included in the HD version of the game. The mystery behind that will be revealed when players reach certain conditions in the main story.

Of course, no Type-0 HD trailer is complete without plugging Final Fantasy XV’s demo. Near the end, we’re reminded once again of the bonus that’ll come bundled with every first print copy of the game, available in March.

All the details from today’s London Active Time Report


Today’s London Active Time Report went above and beyond expectations highlighting not only Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, but once again veering off into a show largely about Final Fantasy XV and its upcoming demo. Hajime Tabata took point along with UK Community Manager Dan Set to answer a few fan questions along with a few surprises as part of the team’s European promotional tour. We’ve included a summary of everything shown following the video.

Q&A Section

  • Is it possible to disable the automatic weapon change and make sure not to use one?
    Not in the demo. The purpose of this is to present the basic operation of the combat system, so it will not be as advanced as in the final version. This means that each attack will be associated with a specific weapon. The idea is that players can give their opinion after playing the demo – the developers will listen and want to know if you would like to have the opportunity to combine all the attacks to a single weapon.
  • Will there be equipment parts and accessories?
    Again, not in the demo, but in the final version.
  • Can I drive the car on certain roads?
    It will not be possible to drive off the roads. To explore the rest of the environment you have to go out on foot or, for example, ride a chocobo. FFXV will include other means of transportation as well like the train we’ve already seen before. There will be no subways, however.
  • Can you give more details about dodge system?
    Again, keeping the dodge button to avoid all attacks is not possible because it consumes MP. It is therefore not an easy solution. The more experienced players will even attempt to press a button at a very precise moment when an enemy strikes to counter an attack, which has also the effect of reducing the amount of MP consumed by dodging. The most cautious players will gain the greatest possible levels of MP and will have enough of it for more dodging. Those more adventurous will use their reflexes.
  • Can you customize the commands?
    Not in the demo, but it is planned for the final version. As this is an action game, the developers want to know what type of customization players want to see. The control scheme will be the same worldwide, except the usual inversion validation and cancellation keys for Japan (X swapped with Circle). The offices of Square Enix in Japan, the US and Europe have already given their feedback and Tabata indicates that they are all very different!
  • Will there be a limit on levels in Episode Duscae?
    The maximum level will be 99! Nothing in the demo will force the player to reach it, but some members of the team wanted to offer this freedom.
  • Of the four heroes, which one does Tabata like the most?
    Ignis, it seems. As they are in London, Tabata specifies that in the English version of the game, he speaks with a British accent – unlike his friends who have an American accent. This is explained by the fact that he is from another region of the world. Ignis a character who belongs to a more or less “elite” class of people which is also very skilled at cooking.

Into the dungeons

Moving on, Tabata booted up the game to show off a quick but of gameplay running on the Xbox One, localized with English text and voice acting. To avoid spoilers, things like cutscenes and the map were deliberately hidden as Noctis and friends made their way to one of the cave entrance areas in the Duscae region. When they arrived at the entrance Tabata cut the demo to show a pre-recorded video with footage of inside that specific cave. He noted that this footage is running on the most current build of the game, and based on visual prompts it comes from the PlayStation 4 version.

In Fina Fantasy XV, the concept behind the dungeons is to create a sense of fear and unknowing that was present in the older titles in the series. In the video we see the goblins who are present in the dungeons during the day, but at night they come out and can be quite dangerous.

The hitstun debate

As with most ATR’s Square Enix Japan marketing director Akio Ofuji stepped up to answer some last minute questions along with Tabata. Since the previous broadcast many players reacted negatively to the combat slowdown known as hitstun or hitstop. The inclusion of this feature is meant to convey a sense of weight and forcefulness to each attack. Tabata admitted that the effect was probably exaggerated at the time and confirmed the team has already adjusted it. The video with the dungeon combat shows this change in action. The developers were still working out the right balance.

Ofuji also commented on the game’s current dodge system to which Tabata explained the team has struggled to find balance. He noted that the game will not be too easy because you won’t be able to evade all the time due to MP cost. Tabata revealed there will, however, be a special dodge ability that does not consume MP tied to the Phantom Swords. It’ll be up to you to gather all of those swords to discover this hidden ability.

World of Wonder

One of the surprises present in today’s ATR was a new tech video showcasing the wildlife found in Episode Duscae. Prepared similar to that of a BBC or Discovery Channel documentary, the team debuted the first volume of video titled “World of Wonder.” The visuals are entirely in the game’s own engine and include creatures never before seen. Among them we can see black chocobos, behemoths, garula, lizards, frogs and even an eagle.

Just how big is Final Fantasy XV?

To follow up his comments from last week, Tabata also clarified the size of the world in Final Fantasy XV, to which he previously stated it was around 10-20 times the size of Duscae. The demo itself is just a small part of the entire Duscae region and the current estimate by the team is that region represents about 1/10th of the overall world map. It is, however, difficult to give a precise approximation.

The demo won’t contain any towns – though the full game will, of course – but instead you’ll be able to meet up with NPCs in little isolated places. Tabata teased an amusing encounter with a certain pair of characters, though he would not elaborate further. The other element absent in the demo is chocobo riding. Again, the ability to do so will be present in the final game but the team was unable to get it ready in time for the demo release. You will, however, still be able to see them roaming about the land.