D uring Square Enix’s press conference at this year’s E3, many thought the new Kingdom Hearts III trailer was debuting with the words, “Do you remember it all? The terrible past you caused?” Fans were shocked to see immediately afterward some cute “chibi” characters that we’d never seen before, followed by similar versions of Black Mages, Moogles, and even Final Fantasy VII’s Cloud. This adorable world turned out to be a brand new PlayStation 4 and Vita game: World of Final Fantasy.
World of Final Fantasy features a unique battle system where your party of six characters – two teenaged main characters, Reynn and Lann, alongside four monsters – can stand atop one another, forming a tower. All of the characters share a single HP and ability pool when stacked, but if all of your characters know a particular ability, the amalgamated unit can cast a more powerful version. Veterans should be familiar with the core battle system, which is modeled after the 16-bit era Active Time battle system seen in earlier Final Fantasy games.
We’re curious to see how the tower system will function with the main characters. Should the twins be in chibi mode, they’ll hop atop larger monsters from the series. However, in their normal forms, their cuddly allies will jump on top of them. At this time it’s unclear how this changes the battles themselves. The chibi versions of the characters were designed by Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles’ Yasuhisa Izumisawa, while the regular-sized characters were handled by series veteran Tetsuya Nomura.
One of the biggest unanswered questions is how the characters in the trailer, like Cloud and the Warrior of Light, came to the world of Grymoire to fight alongside our teen aged main characters. These classic characters appear to be available as “Savior Summons,” not to be confused with the game’s “Mega Mirage Summons,” which only include traditional summon spells. While we’re still unsure if Cloud and company can join our party, we know that some characters from spin-off series will appear in Grymoire.
While we don’t have many details about World of Final Fantasy yet, it’s intriguing to see Square Enix take a slightly less serious bent with the series after recent games like Final Fantasy Type-0 and the hyperdramatic Final Fantasy XIII trilogy. Square is hoping World of Final Fantasy can introduce a younger generation to the franchise. Time will tell the result, but it looks like Square is cramming all the cuteness it can into it