It’s hard to think of JRPGs without the legendary Final Fantasy franchise coming to mind. Sony’s now drumming up the launch of Final Fantasy XVI, which features extensive gameplay preview footage in the April State of Play livestream.
There’s no shortage of gameplay in the preview, which is exactly how to drive excitement for an upcoming game. The showcase touches on the upcoming narrative and medieval fantasy setting, how players will experience protagonist Clive’s story, updates to real-time combat, accessibility for new players, boss battles, and more.
There’s roughly 25 minutes of footage to see and certainly worth the watch if you’re interested in playing the game when it launches this summer. The preview touches on a little bit of everything. Accessibility was notably a focus, which makes sense given that this is a preview. However, Square Enix clearly wants to invite a new generation of players into the world of Final Fantasy. The devs talked about multiple ways to pick up the game and play for the first time, even if real-time combat isn’t typically your thing. One example is how players can use items to modify their playstyle with certain automations that harken back to the classic turn-based combat.
Aside from this players get access to plenty of abilities which can be manually chosen or automatically for those who don’t want as much depth and would rather focus on the story. Another interesting departure from previous games is the ability to select different characters. You’ll only be able to play as Clive this time around, but you will be able to control his pet wolf for a few extra gameplay options.
Prepare your PC for a new challenger
On a technical level, it’s clear this is a next-gen game with all the richly detailed environments and in-game models. We still don’t know the exact PC requirements, but Square Enix’s recently released Forspoken is probably a good example to draw some baselines. We can also likely expect to see new technologies like Direct Storage for near-instant load times if you have an SSD and PC that supports it.
The downside for us PC players is that Final Fantasy XVI will remain a PS5 exclusive for at least six months. That should at least give you more time to assess whether Final Fantasy XVI warrants some hardware upgrades for those flashy visuals and its revamped gameplay.