Why do I say this? We may have to look at the history. Ever since Final Fantasy X, Final Fantasy has been floundering to recapture the magic it once had. When it succeeds now, it does so by a miracle. The last Final Fantasy game where Sakaguchi, Nomura, Amano, Kitase and Uematsu had development in was Final Fantasy X. But lately, it’s been following a fairly consistent pattern.
- Step One: Make someone from the company step down.
- Step Two: Make a fairly successful MMO.
- Step Three: Make mainline game modeled off of an MMO (which may or may not increase development times)
- Step Four: Make sequels to hold fans over.
- Step Five: Make a Final Fantasy game that “goes against the grain”.
Let’s look at the history of Final Fantasy after X:
- Step One: Sakaguchi, the father of Final Fantasy, steps down (mostly likely due to internal pressures).
- Step Two: Squaresoft makes Final Fantasy XI, a successful MMO modeled off of everquest.
- Step Three: Square Enix models Final Fantasy XII off of Final Fantasy XI. Development shifts hands between writers and directors alike due to creative differences.
- Step Four: Final Fantasy finally caves in and makes a sequel of Final Fantasy X, to mixed results.
- Step Five: Final Fantasy XIII, like Final Fantasy VIII, goes against the grain.
Now let’s look at the recent history:
- Step One: Yoichi Wada steps down after the Final Fantasy XIII trilogy.
- Step Two: Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn becomes another highly successful…after the failed launch of Final Fantasy XIV.
- Step Three: Final Fantasy XV is an open-world type of adventure, much like Final Fantasy XIV. With updates. Such is the nature of games nowadays. For how good it is, it suffered from long development times, and director and writer changes.
- Step Four: Square Enix announces Final Fantasy X-3. A Final Fantasy XII sequel under the name Fortress was slated for development, but the project was scrapped. Final Fantasy XIII gets two sequels.
Notice how entropy has taken hold of Square Enix, and the company is running itself down. It’s almost as if the company is progressively getting more and more disorganized. Their only savior in this battle is luck. And this brings us to step five…
- Step Five: Final Fantasy XVI will most likely go against the grain.