GAMES PUBLISHER Square Enix has shown off a new spin-off from its Final Fantasy series, the next installment of its wildly popular spells and swords spectacular.
Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, or 13, is a spin-off title and was shown off at a Final Fantasy Expo in Tokyo this weekend as part of a 25th Anniversary celebration for the game.
It sees the conclusion of the popular Lightning character's story arc. Square Enix said that the game gives increased control over the heroine, and places her into a constantly moving and expansive environment. That environment is a doomed world that faces destruction. Presumably there is only one person that can save it.
Judging by comments coming from those involved, the game, the eighth in the series, offers a new battle system. "We are pleased to reveal that Lightning is returning as the playable character in this title, and are excited to see how fans react to the more direct battle system and expansive environment that can be explored at will" said producer Yoshinori Kitase.
"Increased levels of player freedom, customisation and connectivity with the real world, will ensure that this concluding chapter will be an exhilarating finale to Lightning's story," added Motomu Toriyama, the game's director.
Players can customise the Lightning character, both in terms of what she wears and looks like but also in fighting styles and choices of weapons. The new battle system is a dramatic move away from other Final Fantasy titles, and the game is something of an action based spin-off from the rest. It sounds like it might be a first person shooter type, but its all very vague at the moment.
No firm release date has been announced, only a loose promise of sometime in 2013. µ
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