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Final Fantasy VIII Remastered originally planned as just a direct port

Square Enix took a while to announce Final Fantasy VIII Remastered due to a last-minute shift in its development, as it was originally planned to roll out as just a direct port to current-generation consoles.

Final Fantasy VIII Remastered director Yoshinori Kitase revealed the change of plan in an interview with Famitsu, which asked what kind of troubles Square Enix ran into in the development of the highly anticipated game.

Kitase said that the initial plan was to re-release Final Fantasy VIII for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, and PC, with “more or less the same graphics,” according to a translation by Siliconera.

Fortunately for fans of the game, Square Enix decided that Final Fantasy VIII, originally released in 1999, deserved better for its 20th anniversary. With the evolution of TVs over two decades, the developer thought it was necessary to improve the quality of the game’s graphics.

Square Enix decided to refine the characters when the direct port was nearing completion, resulting in a major schedule change. However, with the efforts of battle programmer Hiroshi Harada, character modeler Tomohiro Kayano, and character designer Tetsuya Nomura, all of whom are members of the development team of the original Final Fantasy VIII, the RPG was revived, and is now being prepared to roll out within the year.

Kitase believes that the delay in the announcement of Final Fantasy VIII Remastered in order to improve the graphics of Squall and the gang was “the right call.” While it appears that the backgrounds were not updated, fans of the RPG will certainly appreciate the game’s better-looking characters.

In addition to the character refinements, Final Fantasy VIII Remastered will also come with features that will enable faster progression, including triple speed, battle enhancements, and no random encounters. PC players, meanwhile, will also be able to enjoy additional features that will allow them to acquire all items, abilities, Limit Breaks, and triple triad cards, as well as boost GF levels, gil, and magic to maximum.

For fans of the beloved Final Fantasy franchise, Final Fantasy VIII Remastered will be a great game to play while waiting for the highly anticipated first episode of the Final Fantasy VII Remake.

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