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Famitsu’s latest issue contains their dissection of Final Fantasy XIII-2′s E3 info with several new screenshots. By now, we’ve heard almost everything we can from FFXIII-2′s E3 appearance but there are a few new details other publications have missed, two of which were fairly self-evident.

Firstly, if it wasn’t obvious already, storytelling will be focused on Serah and Lightning rather than Serah and Snow this time around. Towns have already been revealed but it’s been confirmed that players will be able to revisit them. Alyssa, the new female character in the E3 trailer, has been criticized for her poor design. Many blamed Nomura but according to Famitsu, she was actually designed by Hideo Manaba.

The new scans can be seen below. Thankfully, Famitsu has posted the new screenshots on their website in higher resolution. See them below too.

Source: Famitsu and Gamenysu

Dengeki Playstation has just been released with an eight page spread covering the Final Fantasy XIII-2 details from E3. Most of it is things we’ve already heard but there are a few new details Toriyama and Kitase failed to mention elsewhere.

As already confirmed, Noel will be a major character in XIII-2 but in Dengeki, Toriyama confirms that he’ll have a more prominent role than Lightning with the game mainly progressing with Noel and Serah. Snow has been confirmed to make an appearance in XIII-2 but there’s no mention of him being playable.

The Mog Clock system which we’ve covered before apparently was implemented to help make battles shorter according to Toriyama.

Towns and the NPCs within them have a much larger role in XIII-2 with particular effort being put into the towns people. Members of your party will walk around towns freely getting into conversations with residents. The towns people will also have some form of individual AI according to Toriyama. One example of how it’s implemented is that NPCs will seek cover when it begins to rain. Apparently the weather in a certain area will also effect battles.

Finally, auto-saves will be much more frequent.

Source: Andriasang and Andriasang

The first scans containing information released during E3 have begun to appear on Japanese soil with Jump being the first as usual. Very little is revealed in the single page that’s been released so as usual we’ll have to wait for Dengeki and Famitsu to fill us in on the real dirt in the coming days.

Here’s the couple of details we do have. Firstly, the Optima Change system from the Japanese original will now be called Paradigm Shift just like the international version. Secondly, development has been confirmed to be roughly 70% complete meaning that delays are unlikely – barring a catastrophe. It’s not much but see the full scan below.

Final Fantasy XIII-2 in GameInformer
Date: June 10th, 2011 Author: Agent Dunham
News Category: Final Fantasy XIII-2
Tags: , ,

The most recent issue of GameInformer has run a 4 page article on the upcoming Final Fantasy XIII-2. Starting with a recap of Final Fantasy XIII’s finale (so if you haven’t finished it, you might want to get on that) and of that little short story thing included with the Japanese Xbox 360 release (so if you haven’t read it, you might want to get on that, as well), most of what’s in the article has already been revealed via E3 demos and interviews over the past week. If, however, you find yourself drowning under all the videos and interviews, maybe GI can help you.

The article has been scanned by Second_Chances of GameFAQs. See below.

Thanks to forum member Meowster for the links.

Square Enix showed the press a separate demo to what’s available on the show floor which includes the fight between Lightning and the newly revealed Chaos Bahamut. The battle with her riding her summon Odin, makes use of several of the new gameplay features revealed in interviews. When Famitsu asked whether this was the same Bahamut as Fang’s summon from FFXIII, they were told it was not. Watch the footage below.

Source: Famitsu

Interviews with Toriyama and Kitase have popped up online with plenty of new details on FFXIII-2 contained within them. Recognition of the negative reaction from gamers to the original title is a key factor in development of the game with the team at Square Enix dedicated to making it more “Player driven”. Here are all the new details divulged by the duo today. There are a lot.

Although FFXIII sold over 6 million units worldwide, the team realised the launch was fairly lackluster with a mixed reaction from gamers and reviewers.

Linearity was the main cause of concern. They decided that for the sequel, all the positive parts of the game would be included or improved upon and the parts which were criticized would absolutely have to be tackled. They knew things had to be changed from the original formula.

Linearity is addressed in multiple ways. The new dialog tree implemented allows player to converse with NPCs with multiple outcomes and they’ll be reducing the amount of cutscenes used to break up the narrative focusing on more interactive storytelling. Standing still at certain locations can trigger dynamic cutscenes but they won’t be stopping you if you want to proceed. They want players to explore and trigger cutscenes by themselves rather than force them upon people. The Live Trigger system gives you multiple ways to tackle your current objective. These can include performing tasks which could for example make an upcoming boss battle easier or even avoid it completely. Branching paths remove the linear corridors you were forced to follow in the original and side quests will finally return including plenty of dungeons to explore. The key theme being introduced into this title is choice and freedom, and that these choices will impact the story. With this comes the startling announcement that FFXIII-2 will contain multiple endings. How many endings are possible hasn’t been revealed yet but it’s still a great departure from what we’ve seen before, even if it has been done countless times in other titles.

Several new gameplay features were revealed yesterday including QTE’s, Mog Clock and the ability to jump and although the battle system remains largely unchanged, there are a few more tweaks. Serah won’t be able to summon Eidolons as she isn’t a l’cie anymore but she can instead call monsters to her aid as a third party member. They refused to go into further detail but it’s apparently much deeper in application than described so far. Another complaint addressed was the lack of plenty of mini-games usually found in Final Fantasy titles. Apparently they will be featured in XIII-2 but no details have been revealed. A re-designed game map will also be included. No details on the leveling system have been given yet. Toriyama also said that they plan to allow you to play the game multiple times but when asked whether this meant a “New Game +” type system with characters experience and items carried over, he said they preferred to offer an alternative system to that.

Talking about development, Kitase stated that they wanted to add much more

content to the game that would be worthy of it’s predecessor. He was disappointed by the decision to not release DLC for FFXIII but Toriyama says they can’t confirm how many DLC packs could be made available. Kitase also made sure to add that development of XIII-2 hadn’t impacted on the development of Final Fantasy Versus XIII in any way. Finally, when Kitase was asked whether the game could appear on Nintendo’s new Wii U console, he said that they’re looking into the format but currently XIII-2 will be limited to PS3 and Xbox 360.

Final Fantasy XIII-2 E3 Poster
Date: June 8th, 2011 Author: Falsate
News Category: Final Fantasy XIII-2
Tags: , ,

A poster of FINAL FANTASY XIII-2 at this year’s E3 has appeared on Famitsu’s site as well as their own coverage with Motomu Toriyama and Yoshinori Kitase (director and producer respectively). The image shows Serah wielding a crossbow and Lightning in her armor as seen in the trailer.

Source:  Famitsu

Various videos of the Final Fantasy XIII-2 demo at E3 have popped up but none of them showing the entire thing from start to finish. Gametrailers has thankfully provided that to us with the bonus of a developer walkthrough giving commentary through-out. Watch all four videos below.

The European Square Enix Member’s Blog has posted a hands-on account of Final Fantasy XIII-2 and has new details to reveal about the game. Here is the bullet-pointed summary they posted on their blog explaining most of the new features. To see the full descriptions of some of these key points, check out the full article in the link below.

• While still a deeply story-driven game, FINAL FANTASY XIII-2 has a higher emphasis on giving the player choices to make throughout the game. More branching paths, more hidden secrets, more exploration.

• Level design sees you returning to unlocked environments to access hidden areas as the game progresses.

• A self-contained story set after the events of FINAL FANTASY XIII. XIII-2’s story will be darker and more mysterious.

• All-new playable characters (Serah and Noel), plus the return of fan favourites from FINAL FANTASY XIII.

• The return of the much loved Moogle. A treasure hunter at heart, he will seek out hidden chests.

• Recruit monsters who will aid you in battle, each with unique abilities

Square Enix Members Blog | Hands on with FINAL FANTASY XIII-2 – exclusive details revealed

New Final Fantasy XIII-2 Location
Date: June 7th, 2011 Author: Agent Dunham
News Category: Final Fantasy XIII-2
Tags: , , ,

E3 is a wonderful time of year that’s like some sort of geeky Christmas. A new screenshot for Final Fantasy XIII-2 depicts a quaint looking town (that can be seen being explored with Noel in the E3 trailer). Get a big fat look with your big fat eyes at New Bodhum. Guess HD towns weren’t as hard as Square Enix said they were.

Thanks to forum member Falsate for finding the image.

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    Release Dates:
    Final Fantasy XIII
    Japan Japan: December 17th 2009
    NA NA: March 9th 2010
    Europe Europe: March 9th 2010

    Final Fantasy XIII-2
    Japan Japan: December 15th 2011
    NA NA: January 31st 2012
    Europe Europe: February 3rd 2012

    Final Fantasy Versus XIII
    Japan Japan: TBA
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    Final Fantasy Type-0
    Japan Japan: October 13th 2011
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