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E3 ‘09: Final Fantasy XIII US Revealed

In this extended trailer you not only get to see the Summons Shiva and Odin, but for the non-Otaku fans out there, this is the complete English voice over; with the English menu system.  As you can see, from the summoning magic, it works a lot like Final Fantasy VII, per SquareEnix via a Charge-Gauge.  Though the comparable system to FFVII wasn’t intentional, expect an even faster battle system than the one used in the Final Fantasy VII.

One of my friends on PSN asked me to find out if this game will have Japanese voice over, and unfortunately SquareEnix has already let everyone know that that was not planned. Nevertheless, they were asked this question by several groups throughout the media during E3 and they finally responded that they would consider it.  I think their attitude may have changed since it was pointed out to them that a large number, if not all, of the RPG fans in the West all watch Anime, play J-RPGs, and would prefer voices in the original Japanese voice recordings.  A Japanese friend of mind once pointed out that Japanese gamers themselves hate the Japanese voice overs and find it tacky and often prefer the American voice offers.  Do you see the dilemma?  It’s an interesting dynamic and SquareEnix could fix this by simply given its users the option.

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As for the battle system, each character will get one summon.  Also like Final Fantasy XII, there is a mode that will allow you to set specific character actions but the difference being you could set those Gambit like actions during actual battle as opposed to configuring your partners action before ahead of time.  I’m hoping that they have they kept the option for you to do it before battles anyways as I’m sure some gamers may find that worrying about switching member actions during battle could be too much.  Like the voice overs, its always a plus to have that option though, so I welcome it.

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Considering that SquareEnix usually released the International versions of the Final Fantasy games a year after the original release, I’m not sure that they can justify this anymore given the large size of the Bluray format.  Multiple voice overs and text should fit on one disc, unless if they’ve used up all the space already.  One other concer was the ranking system that some of us got to experience in the Japanese demo.  For the ranking system, you have to keep going through battles efficiently in order to get higher ranks.  Simply defeating enemies will not result in high ranks.  I can tell you from first hand experience that speed is also a factor.   The sad thing about this game is that its not hitting US stores till Spring of 2010 and there is no official release date during that time, so it’s anyone guess at this point.  If you’re wondering, I will have the import version day one since Japanese games are released under Region A for bluray.

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