Discussion in 'Final Fantasy Discussion' started by Lulcielid, Nov 9, 2016.
They also said they weren't working on an FFVII remake and we all know now that was a lie.
I don't think they've done a great deal on FFXVI yet, but i would think they've at least had meetings and discussions about it..
So, for fun's sake, let's speculate: when do you realistically expect S-E to announce or tease XVI?
With XV out of the way, we still have big titles such as KH3 and FFVII-R (also DQXI, but that follows its own route in a way). I'm not entirely confident, but I could see both KH3 and VII releasing next year. With KH I'm more comfortable saying this, as it would have been under work around four years, and the basis is already there, it being an established franchise (so less work has to be put into the conceptualizing process, such as the general battle system, character designs, plot beats...). Basically, they have the skeleton of what 3 has to (or could) be.
Something similar happens with VII. There are HUGE changes to the game, to a point where it's not even that comparable. But it's obvious that some groundwork is already there, such as design, the overall plot and all that jazz: they need to be adapted into a new generation of consoles and a new game philosophy, but the process is naturally faster and easier. Considering its release schedule in different parts, I could see this releasing late 2017 (very doubtful) or during 2018's first half. The game would already have been in development for more than 3 years.
S-E doesn't seem to have much trouble announcing these behemoths in a concurrent time, so I wouldn't be surprised if XVI's announcement came next year (for example, PSX). It's a total mystery, but considering the whole Versus/XV, I could assume that they had some work done in regards to the original XV, at least in preconceptual manner. Sure, precisely this troublesome, unexpected situation could have done the opposite (and delay any work on XVI). Or, I don't know, that pre-production work being canned.
I want to be optimistic (and believe Verendus) and say that the game is well underway (as in, in a state where it could release in two years time). But that's just me being very optimistic.
I'm very excited about this series' future for the first time in forever. Can't wait to see a new set of characters, a new world, a new artistic look and sound and a new battle system. That's was sorely missing in this series and what totally defined it for me: the lack of new things (barring XIV, and that game is already pretty old in its announcement).
The last time Squenix announced a mainline Final Fantasy at anything other than an E3 conference, it was 2001.
As such, it seems like a fair bet that they'll announce it at either E3 2017 or E3 2018. And E3 2017 actually seems like the more likely of the two to me, if only because a year and a half gap between the release of one mainline FF game and the announcement of the next would result in uncertainty about the future of the series (which would, apart from the impact on fans, be very undesirable from a business perspective).
FFXVI, Either tease of announcement, on 2018.
During the whole run of 2017 Square-Enix will be focusing on XV´s DLCs which, if everything goes right, would be release more with more or less 2 months gaps between them. Square-Enix will also be focusing part of their efforts in promoting FFVIIRemake and Kingdom Hearts III.
Overall, Square-Enix marketing machine will be too focused on XV´s DLC + VIIRemake + KHIII to even make the existence of XVI be known to the public.
I'd certainly believe they won't be focusing marketing-wise on XVI when they've got XV's DLC, VIIRemake and KHIII. During that, if they do begin development on XVI, they'll probably delegated to another business division, and maybe even cooperate with another studio on it.
Square-Enix won't make the same mistake with FF XVI as they did with XV. They will only announce it when the game is far into development. My guess would be e3 2018. With the tools they have built for either FF XV (proprietary) or FF VIIR (customized UE4), I think the development of XVI will go much more smoothly. E3 2017 is way too soon after FFXV's release, but a 2018 announcement, with a 2019 release seems realistic.
I don't buy for one second that the groundwork for XVI hasn't yet been set. I think the concept phase is most likely done, and active development will start as soon as XV ships, if it hasn't started yet. I think/wish that Ito will be director, and if that's the case, his team is most likely deep into pre-production already. These projects are massive and are planned long in advance. So it's highly doubtful that nothing has been done for it yet.
The whole engine talk is really interesting to me. I know things are gonna change (for better or worse; or just, different) and that we've barely seen anything, but VII-R looks great, both graphically and artistically (so the UE4 is proven to work with a Nomura-based FF, at least). And it's, apparently, a pretty easy engine to use, as well as fast, so thing would go pretty smooth.
Then you have Luminous Engine, a propietary product you've spent a shitton of time and, I guess, money to develop. Tabata's team has to be more than accostumed to it by now, so I'm guessing their new game is going to be running on it: Tabata said that he had in mind a big game after XV (not Type-1), so I wouldn't be surprised if most, if not all of his skeleton crew for XV work there, as well as the division. I also see great promise on it with less open/big games (similar to Fox Engine. A shame it's Konami).
If S-E were smart and wanted to not make the same mistakes, you would guess that they would have started by now, probably even beyond the conceptual phase all the way into the asset building one. So I'm actually kinda leaning on UE4 as XVI's engine with whatever tech they can salvage and incorporate from Luminous Engine in there, while Tabata's big game would use that full version.
My personal hope is God Ito having being promoted from being a janitor back in 2012 or so to start working on the next mainline title. He produced the ATB system, as well as co-directed VI and XII (in a way) and directed IX, the best of them all. He can be trusted with all of this. I'm dying to know what the setting and stuff would be, I hate modern FF/game development. I want to go back to having a new FF announced in a timely manner and not 5, 10 years
I'm more than sure SQEX have learned the hard way about announcing titles too early. The entire FNC compilation was announced far too early, when one game was only just beginning effective development and the other two were still concept stage. They even said that the reason they didn't announce Kingsglaive until this year was because they announced XV too soon.
Also, the thing about Luminous is that SQEX will probably assess it fully once XV is released. They said a while back they wouldn't attach it to any more products until XV was released and the engine was in a solid form. They've learnt their lesson from Crystal Tools on that front.
At this point, I imagine trying to merge Luminous and UE4 would cost more money than just choosing one or the other, so that seems like the least likely thing to have happen. UE4 games like FFVIIR and Nier are largely being outsourced (and the KH team is probably going to remain a KH team for the foreseeable future), while FFXV was fully internal (apart from the sort of asset outsourcing done by every AAA dev) and included a dedicated engine team. As such, I'd guess they have more people with Luminous experience than UE4 experience.
Besides, they seem to have used FFXV to force the Luminous team to make the engine work for everything they might want to do in the future (from open world to linear set-pieces), some of which isn't included in stock UE4. Luminous just seems like the best bet to me. *shrugs*
Their Luminous Engine matured throughout the development of FF XV and was created to meet the needs of the franchise in the first place. I think the next mainline FF title will use it. It would be insane of them to have spent the amount of money they allocated for the engine's development only to never use it again. Besides, as you said, their developers now have better experience with it, and they can keep improving it with future titles. From what XV shows us, the engine is a very capable one. In fact, FF XV is up there with Witcher 3 as one of the best looking, if not the best looking open world game.
I'm 90% sure they'll use Luminous for XVI because at this point it's a finished product that can put together a great looking game with advanced technology behind it. All their AI systems and more are baked into that engine. Luminous Engine is a lot better than Unreal in many ways apart from the polish that Unreal has from being around for so long. That being said, the XVI team could improve on Luminous even more and make it even better.
I'd say FFXV has a pretty significant advantage when it comes to a like to like comparison between PS4 versions, honestly. Witcher 3's Ultra settings on PC make up for quite a bit, but that advantage would go away if FFXV could be played that way. (My understanding is that PCs make an even bigger distance for open worlds because CPU is important for draw distance and console CPUs are very underpowered.)
Image quality is pretty good in Witcher 3 on the PS4. FF XV is also good, but the characters hair pixelation is quite distracting (quite horrendous to be honest). Witcher 3 has denser vegetation as well. The rest is pretty much like for like, when it comes to dynamic elements (although the weather effects in Witcher 3 seem to be much more pronounced, less subtle like in FF XV), shadow detail, textures, etc. But Final Fantasy XV has better character modeling though, despite the ugly hair.
I really don't see where your "significant advantage" comes from.
It's kind of hard to get a proper comparison shot when there's no way to find screencaps of Duscae without risking spoilers, but here's a shot of W3 at 5PM and a shot of the Judgment Disc demo at 6PM to show what I mean.
Point 1: FFXV has gorgeous, eye-catching lighting when the sun is low on the horizon. W3, in contrast, adds a bit of pink to the lighting but the overall effect isn't really consistent. And, while I chose these particular images to highlight the difference, I've felt similarly about basically all of the screenshots I've seen from either game. Luminous offers one of the best lighting solutions for real-time use that we've seen so far; CDPR's engine doesn't.
Point 2: W3 might have denser vegetation (made all the more obvious because the shot I chose is from Leide's desert waste), but the ambient occlusion used in FFXV makes a significant difference in the apparent quality of the vegetation that's there. (This is why I couldn't use a shot from Episode Duscae, for the record -- that demo didn't implement ambient occlusion on foliage.)
Point 3: While the alpha-to-coverage transparency on FFXV's hair might result in distracting pixelation in screenshots, FFXV's hair is better in every other way. The subsurface scattering effect used when the sun is shining through the characters' hair (Noct's in particular, in the shot I chose) is fantastic, and the much higher poly count allows it to animate a lot better than (console) W3's (PC W3 uses NVIDIA's HairWorks tech, IIRC). Besides, FFXV's TAA works a lot better in motion than in screens, so the pixelation isn't anywhere near as distracting when you're actually watching footage (or playing).
Point 4: Moving away from questionably useful comparison shots, the difference in character modeling is enormous. You know how I mentioned Noct's hair having a much higher poly count then Geralt's? Well, Noct's hair has a poly count 3+ times higher than Geralt's face (and, judging by the wire frame, Noct's face likely has an even higher poly count than his hair), according to infographics from CDPR and Squenix about their respective games. FFXV also tends to put 4-5 player character-quality models on screen simultaneously instead of just one.
Point 5: A different sort-of like-for-like comparison: fighting a griffin in W3 vs. FFXV. (Note: Don't look at Youtube's related vids if you're worried about spoilers. >_>; ) FFXV's fight takes full advantage of its potential for verticality, consistently taking Noct (and therefore the camera) dozens of feet in the air, while W3's stays grounded the entire time. Plus, FFXV's system consistently leaves open the possibility that Noct might need to instantly shift his position 50 feet in any given direction at any given time. That's impressive both in terms of spectacle and in terms of technical requirements.
Point 6: On a related note, FFXV's only true competition when it comes to combat animation is Uncharted 4. Link Strikes and special counter-parry attacks (or, in some cases, counter failures) are so far beyond everything else that it's kind of hilarious.
With all of that said... I think there are other open-world games on PS4 that would give FFXV a much better fight than W3 (though, granted, most of them take place in cities). >_>;
Good read. Thanks.
I have sunk a couple of hundred hours in TW3, and one of the reasons for that is how beautiful the game looks. I think FXV looks better, from what I have seen, which is rather exciting.
1: Here: http://vigilantgamers.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/Witcher.jpg
The only striking difference FF XV has over The Witcher 3 is HDR, which does indeed improve the way the lighting is perceived when the sun is concerned. Like for like, no HDR, the advantage disappear. If CD Project patched the game for HDR (which barely anyone will use for FF XV), there would be no conversation here. But I will say this: FF XV is the game that most benefits from HDR so far. The difference between normal and HDR is simply outstanding.
2: That's irrelevent if the end result doesn't match or surpass what others do without it. Witcher 3 looks more detail packed, especially when vegetation is concerned. Just because a game uses a particular graphics tech, doesn't mean it's automatically better. Substance over style. If one game uses tailored made pre-baked lighting, and the other uses dynamic lighting, if the first has convincing shadows while the other has pixelated and blurry shadows, you can be sure the first one wins in the end. The second may be using a more advanced tech, but it uses it in a condition where the hardware is taxed, and the result simply isn't as pleasing to the audience's eyes. You can apply that concept to FF XV characters' hair.
3: I have played all the demos so far. The pixelation IS distracting. From afar, all's good. But anytime the characters are shown from closer than during gameplay view, it's distracting and horrendous. No excuses there. It's a design choice by Tabata's team. And it's a questionable choice at best.
4: The difference in character modeling isn't enormous. It's on FF XV's side, for sure, but not enormous by any stretch. And I question your date about polygon count. In fact, I'd say your bias is talking more than your objectivity.
5: That's as stretching an argument as an argument can be. The fact remains, in any case, that the Witcher 3 renders more environmental assets at once than FFXV, despite the verticality. The vegetation and wild life compared to FF XV's simply speak for itself.
6: All the games mention use the hardware to handle their needs.
Witcher 3 and FF XV are in the same league. They have different needs, and thus, show their strength in different situations. FF XV isn't a game that was made using magic, making it in a league of its own, or have "significant advantages" compared to other games. That's bias on your part, and I simply don't adhere to that kind of mind set. FF is my all time favorite franchise since 1991, but I don't let that compromise my objectivity.
I will give you this note, because I want to be clear here: Final Fantasy has been my favorite game franchise since I was 9 years old. That's 1990 for you. I am awaiting my UCE any day now. And from what I've played, I will enjoy it more than I have enjoyed TW3. But that cannot blind me of the merits I see in both games.
Honestly, I think the screenshots you chose just prove my point. =/
Looking at the first one, the yellow glow around the sun looks more like a post-processing bloom effect than a Global Illumination effect (probably because W3 doesn't really have real-time GI) -- it looks to be applied evenly as a gradient around the sun without regard to what it's affecting. When compared to the way the lighting is handled in this FFXV screenshot, the difference is immediately apparent -- the pink lighting on the distant mountains is clearly applied based on proximity rather than as a gradient.
Furthermore, even beyond the bloom effect, the way the fiery lighting reflects off of different parts of the W3 image can vary greatly. Geralt's hair and shoulder, for instance, appear to be reflecting white light, as do some of the lighter-colored background elements (like the white birch trees). The bluish fog, in contrast, doesn't reflect the yellow light at all, and there's something weird going on with the edges of the bushes that make their appearance inconsistent with the grass on the ground.
FFXV, in contrast, applies its lighting much more consistently, even on objects that are indirectly lit. That's got nothing to do with HDR (which can't actually be shown in screenshots on most people's monitors), but rather PBR. FFXV's implementation of Physically-Based Rendering is one of the best thanks to its use of photogrammetry, which is why it's able to show near-photoreal food and why it looks so close to VisualWorks' style when shrunk down.
(W3 uses PBR, too, but it's kind of inconsistently applied. It looks really good on leather and metal, but it doesn't work as well on stone or living things.)
Well, remember, Leide is mostly desert. Duscae is a more appropriate comparison, since the vegetation density is much, much higher -- I just don't have access to proper screenshots at the moment.
And I wasn't saying that using AO tech is automatically better. My point was that the lack of AO in W3 makes the foliage that is there look faker. AO differentiates the colors of individual grass blades and makes them pop more -- just look at Episode Duscae vs. a more recent build of Duscae, and you'll see how the grass changes from a bunch of indistinct green to properly-shaded tufts of grass. (Actually, looking at the newer screenshot, I think they added a specular component, too, which increases the effect even further. W3 doesn't have that, either.)
*shrugs* This is probably just a matter of preference. The amount of pixelation I've seen in release build cutscenes is nowhere near high enough for me to prefer last-gen hair geometry.
How in the world is it biased to give poly counts sourced from the creators of each game? o_0; The W3 infographic was CDPR boasting about the improvements they made to their game. The FFXV image was Squenix BD2 boasting about their high-quality character models. Any bias I might or might not have could not possibly have influenced either of those things.
But, seriously, character modeling is Squenix's wheelhouse. FFXV's main character models are absurdly detailed -- the studs on Noct's shoulder clip things are individually modeled. There's nothing strange about Squenix having a big advantage in character modeling over everyone who isn't a big first-party spectacle shooter (e.g. Uncharted, The Order 1886, Quantic Break) dev.
What, visual spectacle isn't a big part of overall visuals? Getting carried into the sky is a lot more striking than standing on the ground shooting a crossbow even if there are a few more tufts of grass showing during the latter.
Besides, W3 and FFXV are attempting different things with their environments. W3 uses a lot of larger plants to create the illusion of greater coverage without increasing the technical requirements, while FFXV's Duscae has mostly shorter grass (which is harder to fill out). FFXV's use of wildlife is a bit different, too, since it's more interested in being able to throw tons of megafauna at you simultaneously than it is in having a lot of background critters with no gameplay purpose. It's also got non-wildlife to be concerned with, especially since the fight takes place next to a road, and while I didn't see a car drive by in the clip I linked, I've seen cars drive by during footage from other hunts, so I'm pretty sure they can do that at random. (Note that the the quality of vehicles in FFXV is such that I'd be shocked if a single car wasn't more taxing than a couple dozen far-off birds.) I also wouldn't be surprised if the Griffin hunt could be interrupted by a Niff carrier or some Daemons if the fight dragged on into the night.
It's also worth pointing out that -- while I seem to have lost the link for the version of the Griffin fight where Noct uses crafted fire magic -- FFXV appears to have more environmental interaction, since Geralt's fire magic doesn't affect the foliage at all.
Games don't need to be made using magic to have significant advantages over their competitors. Trade offs are always going to be necessary, but it's possible for a trade off to be along the lines of man-hours-for-quality or equipment-cost-for-quality rather than quality-of-X-for-quality-of-Y. Naughty Dog, for instance, is able to do what they do largely because they develop for a single spec and can take full advantage of quirks of the PS4 that multiplat devs might not have time to take advantage of.
Squenix, from what I can tell, had a number of costs that CDPR didn't. Squenix has a ton of CG R&D costs unlike CDPR, but that allowed them to roll R&D done by VisualWorks into making a game that can mimic VisualWorks' style (at the expense of the number of VisualWorks-made cutscenes in the game and in Kingsglaive). Squenix had nearly as many people working on FFXV as CDPR had in its entire company, and they paid internationally-competitive salaries to draw in US and Western European developers instead of relying on local talent at Polish prices like CDPR. Squenix also sacrificed most of their cinematics in favor of party banter and limited animation NPC interactions in favor of better combat animation, which seems to have been a top priority for them.
Under those circumstances, it's only natural that their combat animation would be in a completely different league, really.
Ok. I have now seen the light. While CDPR had to make compromises because the consoles hardware is limited, S-E weren't limited by those and managed to make a PS5 game run on it.
I'll end this argument here, since you have absolutely no objectivity here. You can't say a single thing Witcher 3 does well or better than FFXV. It's all "FFXV is better at everything!". And that's simply not true. But I don't have the energy to go into a lengthy argument with you. I simply don't care enough if you think FF XV is God.
We both agree that it looks amazing. Let's end this at that.
Ending an argument with a ridiculous strawman characterization of the other side does you no favors. -_-
I never claimed that FFXV was "a PS5 game" or anything of the sort -- I just said it had one of the top current gen lighting engines, some of the best current gen character models and combat animation, and that the trade offs it made with regards to the environment resulted in a more impressive overall result.
I also never blamed console limitations on anything. In fact, I provided a completely reasonable explanation for the difference in overall quality -- Squenix had a lot more resources to work with.
Furthermore, I actually did reference one thing that FFXV sacrificed in comparison to W3, namely, a fair portion of its cinematic cut-scenes. I understand that W3 has some of the best cutscene direction in the industry; meanwhile, FFXV only attempts to compete in that arena a fraction of the time, replacing most of what would have been cinematics with free-camera party banter or generically framed interactions between still characters. To name another place where W3 excelled and FFXV hardly bothered, W3 is known for meaningful choices, while FFXV is very open about its moments of choice being limited. Both of these things are very resource intensive, and their presence or absence could have a significant effect on the amount of man hours the devs could spend elsewhere.
It's also worth pointing out that W3 had a simultaneously-released PC version, while FFXV was effectively designed to meet a single spec at two different resolutions. W3 had to spread itself more thinly in order to meet the needs of PC fans who expected a visual showcase at the same time as console fans who expected the game to look visually consistent on fixed hardware. The end result was a much higher peak -- W3 on high-end PCs destroys FFXV in terms of image and texture quality, and it takes advantage of some very technically demanding effects like NVIDIA HairWorks that FFXV could never have used on console -- but the console versions sometimes look like a less-than-ideal subset of the intended game instead of the true goal of the developers because of it. FFXV benefits significantly from being a console game first and foremost, and if Tabata gets to make the PC version he wants, that'll benefit significantly from being treated more like an HD remaster than a normal port. CDPR would have been murdered if they attempted anything of the sort, though.
But, yeah, if you want to leave it at that, go right ahead.
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