E3 2013: Final Fantasy Producer Asks If People Want Modern Turn-based Games

Wednesday, June 12th, 2013

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Final Fantasy XV

Throughout much of the history of Final Fantasy, the core combat of the majority of the series has relied on the Active Time Battle system, a combat system in which players select menu commands to fight, cast spells, use items, and perform any other action the player’s party is capable of without actually taking direct control of a character. However, more recent entries have shied away from this system in one way or another, with games like Final Fantasy XII, XIV, and now XV all electing for different, increasingly action-driven approaches.  Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII represents an even stranger departure that mixes elements of real-time action combat with the ATB system.

It was during a presentation on Lightning Returns that producer Yoshinori Kitase posited a question to reporter Jeremy Parish of US Gamer: “I’d like to know, would you want to see a turn-based command style return?”

He elaborated. “Here’s a hypothetical question—and this is just hypothetical, so don’t read too much into this. What if we were to take a game like, say, Final Fantasy VI that does have the ATB system but is basically command-based—what if we were to take that game and breathe new life into it, make it into a current-gen game? Would users be OK with it in that turn-based style?”

The answer might be seemingly obvious, as it was to Parish, who responded with a “Yes.”  And to some, it might seem like a silly question. I know I’m not alone in my desire to see a modern remake of Final Fantasy VI that remained true to its ATB roots. But what about the rest of you out there?  Would you like to see Square Enix produce a modern Final Fantasy game, whether all-new or a remake, that used the ATB system of old, or do you prefer the more action-oriented approach of the latter entries and games like Kingdom Hearts?

About Justin Graham

Justin joined Oprainfall through…belligerence. (Note to others: This is not a good way to get noticed. This sort of thing only works once.) When he’s not writing about games or waxing nostalgic about anime older than a large portion of the site’s audience, he can be found playing JRPGs or beating up lots of dudes in Dynasty Warriors.