Square-Enix is undergoing a massive corporate restructuring in the new fiscal year, a move that’s seen long time CEO Yoichi Wada resign from his post after the company lost nearly $101 million in restructuring efforts. Wada pointed the finger at what it considered disappointing console game sales (and others might call unrealistic), titles like Tomb Raider and Hitman: Absolution, as the cause of Square’s most recent “extraordinary loss.” Unspoken in its earnings reports, however, are games like Final Fantasy Versus XIII, the PlayStation 3 exclusive that’s been in development at the company for more than seven years now. Rumors of its cancellation have run rampant for years, but director Tetsuya Nomura insisted once again this week that the game is still in the works.
“It’s a delicate situation within the company,” Nomura told podcast Square-Enix Merchandise Radio (via Nova Crystalis), “The date for our next reveal is set and we are working toward preparing information for that. Perhaps the details as to why information couldn’t be released might be touched upon with the next information announcement.”
Final Fantasy Versus XIII hasn’t been shown to the public since a demonstration at the Tokyo Game Show in 2010, leading many to believe that the game was either canceled or had changed in significant ways, either as a multiplatform title for Xbox 360 or as the next mainline entry in the series, Final Fantasy XV. Fashion company Roen, who consulted on Versus XIII in 2008, suggested in March that the game had been changed into Final Fantasy XV.
With Nomura confirming that Square-Enix now has definitive plans to show the game to the public, another possibility has emerged: Final Fantasy Versus XIII will be a PlayStation 4 game rather than a PlayStation 3 game. Final Fantasy brand director Shinji Hashimoto made the bizarre teaser announcement during Sony’s February event for the PlayStation 4 that Square-Enix would unveil a new Final Fantasy game at E3 2013. Given Square-Enix’s prolonged productions at its Japanese studios, it would make sense that the company would reappropriate an existing game as an easy way to transition into the next console with a fresh product for players. Nomura’s comments line up handily with Hashimoto’s vague statements.
With the Final Fantasy XIII name tarnished by tepid sales and fan resentment, it also makes sense that the game’s title would be changed to the more marketable Final Fantasy XV.