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Last Remnant video goes on an odyssey


Square Enix has released the first trailer for its upcoming RPG, Last Remnant. X3F readers will recall that Last Remnant is something of a first for Square Enix, in that it is being simultaneously released in both the U.S. and Japan. Not only that, but it includes two main characters, one designed to appeal to Japanese audience, and another made for western audiences. The trailer showcases some gameplay that looks a bit like Dynasty Warriors and suspiciously similar to Lost Odyssey (created by previous Square Enix employee, Hironobu Sakaguchi).

[Via Joystiq]

Square Enix: 360, PS3 are over-engineered

We've heard plenty of insults hurled at our beloved consoles. Too pricey. Not enough games. Games are too pricey. Unreliable. How about this one: over-engineered. According to Yoichi Wada, chief executive of Square Enix, new-gen consoles like the PS3 and Xbox 360 aren't catering to the current video game market. So what does cater to the current market? Handhelds of course, which Wada sites as the reason for Square Enix's choice to bring Dragon Quest IX exclusively to the DS. Wada believes that new generation consoles are too complicated, stating, "There are too many specs – and you also need a high-definition TV, a broadband connection and a deep knowledge of gaming – these consoles are mismatched to today's environment. In a year or two years they will fare better." He also adds that developing exclusives for the PS3 is a risky move for today's publishers.

Our question: why hasn't anyone at Square Enix applied this logic to the Final Fantasy series?

Square squashes FFXIII 360 rumors

One of the most persistent Xbox 360 rumors (right up there with Metal Gear Solid 4) has been officially debunked at the highest level. Of course, we're talking about Final Fantasy XIII. But, how high is the highest level? How about a Square Enix executive? Specifically, IGN reports Square Enix's Shinji Hashimoto stated that the company has no current plans to make any more Final Fantasy titles on the Xbox 360. When asked about Final Fantasy landing on Wii or 360, Hashimoto stated, "For the Wii, we have FF Crystal Chronicles in production ... As for FF on the Xbox 360, it's currently a completely blank page."

Being Xbox 360 fanboys, this is where we are contractually obligated to note that Hashimoto's statements don't necessarily rule out future games in the series or even a delayed port of Final Fantasy XIII itself. Hair splitting aside, it looks like any hope of the next installment of Final Fantasy landing on the Xbox 360 has been crushed.

[Via Joystiq]

Square Enix launches Last Remnant website


A new website has been launched for the upcoming RPG from Square Enix, The Last Remnant. Right now The website consists only of a single image, some text, and a repeating loop of background music (that you can't turn off). There are two versions of the website. The North American version shows both the typical Square hero, Rush, and the hero designed with Western audiences in mind, the Conqueror. Look carefully at the bloodstained wall behind the Conqueror. You'll notice that the clean part of the wall is in the same shape as the Conqueror's silhouette, which means he was standing there when something very messy happened (yet his hair remains miraculously clean). The Japanese site, curiously, doesn't display the Conqueror at all. Hopefully, it won't be too long before we start sussing out some actual gameplay details.

First Last Remnant screenshots surface


The first screenshots of the new Square Enix RPG, The Last Remnant, have been released. To be specific, there are two screenshots and some artwork. The first screenshot (above), shows off one of the game's towns. As you can see, it's very detailed and generally pretty impressive. The second shot shows off what appears to be combat between two different armies. The character models here look nice, though not fantastic. Finally we have a new piece of art. Before you start thinking that the girl with short hair and a sword is hot, know this: that's no girl.

Let's face it, it wouldn't be a Square Enix RPG without a disturbingly androgynous hero. Visit Xboxygen for high resolution screens.

Xbox 360 Final Fantasy news article XXVII

As Microsoft's Boris Schneider-Johne put it, "one down, two to go". Microsoft is probably very happy to get its grubby mitts on the likes of Devil May Cry 4, but two of Sony's major exclusives -- Final Fantasy and Metal Gear Solid 4 -- remain unclaimed. Of course, both games have had their share of rumors stating otherwise. Enter a recent issue of the Australian Playstation Magazine, which contained an interview with Square Enix director, Motomu Toriyama. In particular, one quote has made it around the internet in record time: "... in terms of formats we're reaching ... it's not simply exclusive to the PS3 and mobile phones." It's easy to read this quote and assume Toriyama is referring to the imminent arrival of Final Fantasy XIII on the Xbox 360, but that's making quite a leap. Final Fantasy games have all enjoyed success on multiple platforms, ranging from the DS to upcoming PSP ports to even the Gamecube. It's just as likely that Toriyama is referring to the DS, Wii, PSP, or even another movie. Furthermore, he could easily be talking about spin-off titles and not Final Fantasy XIII itself. Hell, Final Fantasy XIII is already set to have three titles (Final Fantasy XIII, Final Fantasy Versus XIII, and Final Fantasy Agito XIII).

In other words, don't expect Final Fantasy XIII to jump ship anytime soon. It's still possible of course, but Toriyama's comments are not confirmation of a 360 version.

[Via Joystiq]

Shane Kim: Sylpheed to be MS published in US


After seeing our article speculating that Square-Enix's Project Sylpheed would be published by Microsoft in the U.S., Spencer from Siliconera dropped us a line. He informs us that he pulled Microsoft Game Studios' Shane Kim aside during the blogger's breakfast at GDC. Spencer then asked about Project Sylpheed. Kim informed him that Slypheed is coming to the U.S. and that it is being published by Microsoft as a second party title. The deal is similar to Microsoft's publishing arrangement for Tenchu Z. So there you have it, expect to see a Microsoft published Project Sylpheed sometime this year.

MS publishing Project Sylpheed in US?


A recent retail rumor roundup on GameSpot sees a listing for Square Enix's Project Sylpheed on GameStop. While that in itself isn't terribly shocking, the publisher and developer listed is intriguing. According to the GameStop listing, Microsoft Game Studios is the publisher and developer of the US version of Project Sylpheed (although the GameStop listing spells the title Silpheed). The game is listed for a July release with a bargain price of $39.99. Granted, product listings should never be taken as fact, but it would be significant if Microsoft reached a publishing deal with Square-Enix, especially in light of recent events.

Could Square really be cozying up to Microsoft?

Final Fantasy XIII heading to Xbox 360?

The PS3 exclusivity rumor train is unstoppable these days. Just days ago it was revealed that both Devil May Cry 4 and Ace Combat 6 were going multiplatform, and now we hear, courtesy of GameSpot, that the one of the biggest exclusives of all may be spreading the console love as well. Yes, it appears that Final Fantasy XIII -- you know, "that RPG" -- could be jumping the fence in search of greener pastures. In an interview with Les Dernières Nouvelles d'Alsace, Georges Fornay, president of Sony Computer Entertainment France, hinted at the possibility. Fornay noted that development costs for games have skyrocketed, making it difficult for 3rd party developers to produce exclusive titles. Said Fornay, "As far as Final Fantasy XIII goes, I can tell you that the exclusivity is in discussion." Square-Enix has yet to comment on Fornay's statement.

Final Fantasy creator, Hironobu Sakaguchi, recently added fuel to this rumor, stating that the FFXIII's White Engine is capable of multiplatform development, and that he believed making FFXIII a multiplatform game would be a "wise" decision. Is the Xbox 360 about to pick up another of the PS3's heavy hitters? Only time will tell. If Final Fantasy XIII were to come out on Xbox, would it sway your decision to get a PS3?

New Square-Enix MMO bound for 360, not PS3? [update 1]

Update: After doing a little digging, we've uncovered the source of this story. Tanaka's comments come from an interview with Pro-G, so it looks like the upcoming 360 MMORPG from Square-Enix is the real deal, folks.

Say it with us now: "whaaaaa?" Coming from our friends at Xboxygen (they're like, totally French), is a dandy of a rumor: Square-Enix is currently developing an MMORPG for the Xbox 360 and Windows Vista. Perhaps the most interesting part of the rumor, the game may not make it to the PS3 at all. Hiromichi Tanaka, director and executive producer of Final Fantasy III for the DS, reportedly made this announcement in a recent interview: "We're working on a next generation MMORPG for the Xbox 360 and Vista but a version for the PS3 is possible."

Assuming this is true, we can only guess as to what the MMO will be. Considering that Final Fantasy XI is already available for the 360, it's not too much of a stretch to assume it might get a sequel. Still, the important thing is that Microsoft may be getting more Square-Enix love in the near future. Could a legitimate Final Fantasy be in the works as well? We can dream, can't we?

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