A comparison video between the original SNES game and new DS remake of Final Fantasy IV is available for your viewing pleasure above. As one might expect, the DS title dwarfs the SNES game graphically, showing us a much more alive game world and bringing the events to life in better fashion. But, hey, we're not knocking the SNES game. We're all for the retro around here.
With the release of Final Fantasy IV getting closer and closer, who's ready to ignore their responsibilities for a week to play through this one?
Square Enix Membership has its benefits. The company has made a web form available through which anyone with a Square Enix Members account (it's free) can submit questions to the Final Fantasy IV team. According to the site's blog, "All of the questions will be forwarded to the team, but only a few will be answered."
If you're curious about changes made to the Final Fantasy IV story or gameplay for the remake, or about the development of a DS game in general, this is a good opportunity! Just try not to submit five thousand questions (or one, even) about a Final Fantasy VII remake. They know.
With FFTA2 now shipped and out of its hands, Square Enix has turned its attention to building up the release of its next summer title, Final Fantasy IV. The publisher has fired out over two dozen new screenshots for the RPG, all of them in our gallery below!
For those of you who aren't sure what the 3D remake promises to add to the almost 17-year-old game, here's a quick recap: touchscreen controls, a dungeon-mapping system, additional episodes, a system with which characters can learn abilities from friends, fully voiced cutscenes, an Event Theatre mode for watching past cutscenes, and a minigame for raising your own summon monster. So, there's quite a lot of new stuff!
It's okay if you weren't that into Final Fantasy III. As Final Fantasy games go, it's down near the bottom of the list for many people, and even though grinding-on-the-go can be easier than doing the same in your living room, FFIII required a lot of effort.
Final Fantasy IV, however, should totally be pinging your radar in a big way. It's got it all: drama, tension, great characters, epic battles, and it was the first of the triumvirate of awesome (FFIV, FFV, FFVI) that really put the franchise on the map, and next month's remake looks to be doing the classic ultimate justice. The payoff is so much bigger, and in this version, it's beautiful, too. Not convinced? Not only do we have more than forty brand new, English-language images for you in our gallery, we've got new videos hidden away after the break as well. So mount up, get comfortable, and start watching. Next month is going to be a fabulous time for RPG fans.
This summer promises to be both funtastic andpacked with great Square Enix titles, and now you can have a little sampling, right from the comfort of your monitor! It's like that first big barbecue of the year, except without the greasy fingers and the flies. Or the food. There's no food here. We checked.
What we do have, however, are three videos, neatly lined up for you after the break. Dive right in and get your taste of Final Fantasy IV a month and a half early -- but don't forget your napkin.
For those of you who wondered after the lastFinal Fantasy IV trailer if the North American version of the DS remake would have English voices, here's your answer. Well, above here. Up there, in the video part. Turn your speakers on. The latest trailer, focusing on the story of (non-Batman) dark knight Cecil, features fully-voiced cutscenes, in English.
Square Enix may like to charge more for their DS games, but at least they are willing to sink some money into the the development of the things. The high-quality presentation of this game almost justifies the Square Enix Tax.
Even though we've totally seen the TGS 2007 Final Fantasy IV trailer, it's worth seeing again now. One simple change has made it the perfect promotional vehicle for the North American launch of the game in July. That change is words. In anticipation of the English release of the remake, this trailer has been subtitled.
Despite knowing the story already, and even having seen the trailer, we were still taken aback by the dramatic presentation. We may be 2D for life types, but there's no denying that characters of semi-realistic human proportions, who have faces and can move, do a much better job of conveying emotion than 32x32-pixel sprites.
This new trailer comes from the updated Final Fantasy IV website, which also shows the possibly-final, totally minimalist boxart. We've screencapped it and placed the image after the break for your perusal!
Final Fantasy and card games go together like ... well, the other part of that simile depends on how much time you wasted trying to get rare items by playing Final Fantasy VIII's Triple Triad. In any case, card games and Final Fantasies go way back.
The Japanese version of the Square Enix Members site now has two Final Fantasy IV-themed card games available for free play, requiring only that players sign up. Daifugo is a popular Japanese card game in which players put down sequentially stronger cards with the goal of emptying their hands. Pochika Sodatsusen is, according to Game|Life's Jean Snow, played "in a style similar to Old Maid, with a few new twists, like the ability to capture cards." It is associated with the new Whytkin character.
Making up for the three pitiful images it sent out when announcing Final Fantasy IV's stateside release, Square Enix has accompanied its FFIV announcement for Europe with twenty translated screenshots! The RPG remake doesn't have a firm date yet, unlike North America's July 22nd commitment, but the game should reach PAL territories this summer.
Those of you who've followed its development and release in Japan last December know that Final Fantasy IV DS includes a wide range of additions unavailable in the SNES, PlayStation, WonderSwan Color, or GBA versions -- 3D graphics, touchscreen controls, dungeon-mapping, fully-voiced cutscenes, an expanded storyline, an Event Theatre mode for replaying cutscenes, and a minigame for nurturing your own summon monster.
Hit the gallery below for an English preview of some of those new features!
Spencer over at Siliconera is deep into the Final Fantasy IV remake, and has found more changes beyond new graphics, new abilities and wacky critters. Specifically, the bosses, which were hard enough to be irritating to RPG neophytes anyway, have had their patterns mucked around with, probably to force FFIV devotees to think for a second. For example, the Antlion now has the ability to counter magical attacks, including summons, in addition to physical attacks.
This should help provide a new experience for people who have played through Final Fantasy IV before. For example, this blogger completed the game once, and will now have an opportunity to experience failure to complete the game.
You can go ahead and just accept that the next few months of your life are likely to belong to Square Enix. Now that we have an official release date for Final Fantasy IV, we're looking at:
The World Ends With You this month
Space Invaders Extreme and Arkanoid DS in June
Final Fantasy Tactics A2 in June
Final Fantasy IV July 22
And that's just a sprinkling of what's to come. There's so much else to consider, from Kingdom Hearts 358/2 Days to Valkyrie Profile: The Accused One, and maybe even Itadaki Street. And to think, some people are convinced that third parties have a tough time on Nintendo systems. Not so with Square Enix on the DS, that's for sure.
Did you miss the date for Final Fantasy IV in the last issue of Nintendo Power? We did, and so did many others; we were all too busy reading the incredible ten page spread on the game to look at the chart on page 18. Now RPGFan is also reporting that the game will ship this July, so it should be only a matter of time before Square Enix confirms the release. At this rate, we can expect Final Fantasy VI (also known as the one we're waiting for on the DS) in July of 2009. Can we get on that, guys? Not that we aren't excited about Final Fantasy IV (we are!), we're just ... uh ... looking ahead.
The cover story on this month's Nintendo Power magazine is something that should sell a few copies, and set a few DS owners' hearts ablaze: Final Fantasy IV. The ten-page feature doesn't actually confirm that FFIV is being released in North America (never mind an actual release date), but ... the game is on the cover of Nintendo Power. Oh, and all the screenshots are in English.
With good news, however, must come some bad: in an interview with Takashi Tokita, who directed the FFIV remake, the possibility of a remake of another of his well-known games is discussed:
"Chrono Trigger was a no-holds-barred, swashbuckling adventure that was a lot of fun to work on... If the demand is great enough, it's certainly possible. But as a creator, I feel the need to create new titles and not just series installments and remakes. I realize it's a little strange for me to be saying that in an interview about Final Fantasy IV (laughs). But I need to remind myself of that, too."
But what's that? You want more lists? You're insane! But Famitsu hears you! The venerable Japanese publication just published its top games of 2007, based on the magazine's review scores, and The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass (the game that collects gongsandawards like they're going clean out of fashion) romped to top spot, thanks to its near-perfect 39/40 score.
The DS reclaimed second place for hardware, managing to inch past the PSP on this week's chart. A bunch of new releases helped the handheld's sales, as fifteen of the top thirty games last week were DS titles.
Nintendo DS: 62,362
PlayStation 3: 17,637
PlayStation 2: 11,266
Xbox 360: 2,198
The top contender for the dual-screened portable last week was the Japanese dating sim, Tokimeki Memorial: Girl's Side 2nd Season, which beat everything except Smash Bros. and Wii Fit. Meanwhile, After-School Boy and Doraemon Baseball were knocked out of the top thirty, but remained in the top fifty (along with Rune Factory 2). Overall, though, it was a great software week for the DS. If you want to see why, check out the numbers after the break.