Final Fantasy XVI is nearly upon us, and the next big blockbuster mainline series entry from Square Enix is set to be a pretty big deal. A PlayStation 5 exclusive made by a team with the legendary Naoki Yoshida at the helm and set to deliver a drastic departure in tone from recent entries, all eyes are on Final Fantasy XVI to blow fans away as well as introduce newcomers to the franchise.
With that in mind, we decided to channel our inner Harpocrates and put together a quick compendium of the most important things to know about Final Fantasy XVI, whether you’re a rabid Final Fantasy fan excitedly awaiting the June 22nd release or a curious onlooker considering dipping your toes into the franchise for the first time.
The easiest advice, though? Try out the free prologue demo containing the first two hours of the game, and transfer your save data across to the full thing! Check it out here.
Final Fantasy XVI is set in the world of Valisthea, a land where magical aether flows from enormous Mothercrystals set across its two continents. A resource precious to the Valisthean ways of life, nations fight for dominion over the Mothercrystals and wield powerful beings called Eikons, controlled by extraordinarily unique humans known as Dominants, as weapons of war. Players take on the role of Clive, the son of a ruling family and bodyguard to his younger brother and heir to the throne, Joshua, who happens to be the Dominant blessed with the power of the fire Eikon, Phoenix. After a mysterious second fire Eikon, Ifrit, appears and attacks their home, Clive goes on a journey to seek out this second Dominant of fire and exact his revenge.
Do I Need To Play The Previous Final Fantasy Games?
Not at all! Like most mainline Final Fantasy games, this one is completely self-contained with its own original world, characters and gameplay systems. This entry in particular is a pretty big departure from recent entries in terms of tone, content and combat so even if you’ve tried previous titles and didn’t gel with them, this one might just be the ticket. Think less old-school turn-based JRPG and more a blockbuster mix of Game of Thrones and God of War.
What Kind Of Game Is Final Fantasy XVI?
Final Fantasy XVI is an action RPG featuring the first fully real-time combat system in a mainline entry (although Final Fantasy XV’s hybrid action came close). The combat closely resembles that of action games like Devil May Cry, with Combat Director Ryota Suzuki having previously worked on titles like Devil May Cry 5 and Dragon’s Dogma at Capcom. It’ll still feature hallmarks of the franchise like the use of elemental magic, character progression and equipment, only translated into fast-paced combat using Clive’s melee skills and unique Eikonic abilities.
Will Final Fantasy XVI Feature Party Members?
Much like previous Final Fantasy games, Final Fantasy XVI will see Clive frequently journeying with companions, although this time around they won’t feature as playable characters. Clive’s friends will join him in combat, but they’ll be strictly AI-controlled and will leave or join the party depending on what point in the game players are at. The slight exception to this is Torgal, Clive’s faithful canine who acts as a constant support and has his own set of commands that players can give him for timely assistance during combat.
Is Final Fantasy XVI Open-World?
While it’s not a seamless open world, Final Fantasy XVI will feature numerous large, explorable zones, which will open up as the story progresses. The main story quests will mostly take Clive and friends to more linear “stages” that take place in their own self-contained areas, but in-between big story moments players will be able to fast travel to each of Valisthea’s regions to freely explore, pick up sidequests from towns and settlements as well as the Hideaway hub area, complete monster hunts and more.
Who’s Making Final Fantasy XVI?
Final Fantasy XVI is the creation of Square Enix’s Creative Business Unit III, the studio largely responsible for the hugely-popular MMORPG, Final Fantasy XIV. Led by Naoki Yoshida (affectionately known as Yoshi-P), some of the team’s main creatives include director Hiroshi Takai (The Last Remnant, Final Fantasy XIV), writer Kazutoyo Maehiro (Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, Final Fantasy XII), translation director Michael-Christopher Koji Fox (NieR Automata, Final Fantasy XIV), combat director Ryota Suzuki (Devil May Cry 5, Dragon’s Dogma) and composer Masayoshi Soken (Drakengard 3, Final Fantasy XIV).
Final Fantasy XVI’s creators have previously stated that the game will run for around 35-40 hours for anyone playing through just the core quests and ignoring side content, with a more complete playthrough including side content potentially running up to double that. It’s been claimed that at least 11 hours of the game’s runtime will be taken up by cutscenes, though it’s unclear whether that number represents just major cutscenes or (more likely) also includes all of the incidental conversations and optional sequences throughout.
Is There A Demo For Final Fantasy XVI?
There sure is! A playable demo is available for Final Fantasy XVI that gives players the chance to try the first couple of hours of the game for free, with progress carrying over to the full game should they decide to pick it up. During that time you’ll get to experience the game’s prologue setting up the world and characters, and get an early taste of the combat. Also included in the demo is an added battle showcasing some more of Clive’s later abilities, though this is a standalone section for the demo and won’t carry over to the full game. You can download the demo right here.
Does Final Fantasy XVI Have A 60FPS Mode?
Final Fantasy XVI feature’s two visual modes for players to choose from, a Quality mode that emphasises resolution and image quality and targets 30 FPS, as well as a Performance option that targets 60 FPS at the cost of some clarity and visual quality. Given the fast-paced action nature of the game, most players will likely lean toward the higher-performance mode, and while cutscenes will still be locked at 30FPS and performance can vary in general exploration, the team at CBUIII has said it’s optimised the combat experience especially to be as smooth as possible.
Will Final Fantasy XVI Have Difficulty/Accessibility Options?
Final Fantasy XVI has been designed with both modern action game fans and series diehards who are less familiar with fast-paced, real time combat in mind, so it’ll have two base difficulty settings alongside some extra assists. While the game won’t feature the depth of accessibility tweaks of some other AAA PlayStation exclusives, those playing in the easier Story-Focused mode or the standard Action-Focused mode will be able to make use of special equippable accessories that can smooth out the combat experience and take the edge off for anyone that finds themselves struggling with things like evasion timing, combos and Torgal commands. You can read more about those here.
Will There Be A Post-Game In Final Fantasy XVI?
Final Fantasy XVI’s post-game content will come in the form of a New Game Plus mode that allows players to carry over all of the gear and abilities they’ve obtained in a completed playthrough, while adding extra challenge in the form of a harder difficulty mode titled Final Fantasy Mode. Enemies will be stronger, and harder enemies will be placed earlier and more frequently throughout the game, but players will also be able to strengthen Clive and his gear beyond what was possible in their first playthrough. You can read more about that here.
What Is Final Fantasy XVI’s Trophy List Like?
While the PlayStation trophy list for Final Fantasy XVI hasn’t been officially published yet, we know thanks to early leaks that it’s going to be a big task. While revealing the full run of unlockable trophies would spoil some surprises, one particular task to note is that you’ll need to play through the game at least twice – once on either of the standard difficulties and then once more on that extra-hard Final Fantasy Mode difficulty. Good luck!
Is Final Fantasy XVI Coming Out On Other Platforms?
At launch, Final Fantasy XVI will be a PS5 exclusive. That exclusivity period is set to end on December 31st, 2023, after which point we don’t yet know if Square Enix is considering bringing the game to other platforms like PC – but it’s certainly possible!
Will Final Fantasy XVI Require A Day One Update To Play?
While it won’t require a day one update to play, and the team at Creative Business Unit III were adamant about not having a day one patch at all, it’s ultimately come to be that there is a small patch available at launch that adds some performance optimisations and prevents very rare and specific instances of bugs.