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    Final Fantasy XV: The Story

    Originally announced as Final Fantasy Versus XIII, a Final Fantasy XIII spin-off, the game was intended to bring a new dimension to the series. It would seem, however, that the desire to do something new and, more importantly, to do it right, can lead to problems.

    There have been various explanations given for the game’s delay, but the one that strikes true is that it has taken a long time to get the game’s more action focused combat systems right. As development stretched into years and Versus XIII became Final Fantasy XV, Square Enix found itself confronting a situation worryingly similar to that faced by Duke Nukem Forever’s developers: how to respond to changes in the technological landscape since it started work on the game in 2006.

    The question that was asked was whether or not the team could realise its vision for Final Fantasy XV if it was released on the PS3 generation. The answer that was reached was ‘no’, and development was moved to be current gen only. Despite the similarity between Duke Nukem Forever and Final Fantasy XV in that regard, there is a crucial difference. Where the former’s decision to move to new technologies seemed to be forced by a lack of vision, the latter seems to have made changes based on a clear idea of what the game should be. That has resulted in a lengthy development, and Square Enix looks close to seeing the game’s development through.

    When a game is delayed in order to ensure that it meets the vision and standards of its creators, it’s hard to see it as anything other than a good thing. Whether delaying that latest entry in the Final Fantasy series will ultimately result in the game meeting the standards that Square Enix has set for itself remains to be seen, but  the excitement now surrounding the game and the state it looks to be in means things are looking pretty positive right now. In any case, the raft of games that were released without a delay, despite the fact that they clearly weren’t up to scratch, shows the delaying a game to make sure it’s up to standard is largely a good thing (we’re looking at you, Battlefield 4). 

    Releasing a game that doesn't live up to a developer’s own expectations is rarely going to result in a warm reception from its audience. If delaying a game allows a developer to achieve the target it has set itself, we’re all for it.

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