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Final Fantasy XIII Has Transformers, Sort Of

Square Enix's next big RPG is truly more than meets the eye.

WHAT IS HAPPENING
Square Enix is showing a brief demo here at E3 of Final Fantasy XIII set in some old ruins near the beginning of the game. Final Fantasy and old ruins go way, way back, so that's not exactly a surprising place for some random encounters and turn-based combat to occur. The PS3 version of the game Square demoed had English voiceovers, though the company said the recording sessions for the English dialogue aren't nearly complete yet and there's still a lot of work to do on the localization front.

Anyway, the combat in FFXIII is similar to what you've seen in past games. The active-time gauge--the per-character bar that fills up over time and lets a character take a turn when it's full--is now divided into quarters. It seems like you can take your turn after the first quarter is full, but every subsequent section that fills up will increase the potency of the action you take. It seems like a good but not-too-complicated way to evolve the old active time battle system everyone's familiar with.

It wouldn't be a Final Fantasy game if you couldn't summon mythical monsters to do the fighting for you, and Square showed off a little of FFXIII's version of summoning. When you bring in a creature, it replaces the party member that summoned it. Summons also have a "gestalt" mode where they change form to gain a different sort of attack. To demonstrate, a Square rep summoned the ice queen Shiva to the battle and then made her transform... into a motorcycle.

Shiva turns into a motorcycle.

After the transformation, another party member hopped onto the bike and started driving into an enemy repeatedly. FFXIII looked pretty good before, but I must say I'm a fair sight more interested in the game after seeing the E3 demo.
Brad Shoemaker on Google+
30 Comments
Posted by Brad
WHAT IS HAPPENING
Square Enix is showing a brief demo here at E3 of Final Fantasy XIII set in some old ruins near the beginning of the game. Final Fantasy and old ruins go way, way back, so that's not exactly a surprising place for some random encounters and turn-based combat to occur. The PS3 version of the game Square demoed had English voiceovers, though the company said the recording sessions for the English dialogue aren't nearly complete yet and there's still a lot of work to do on the localization front.

Anyway, the combat in FFXIII is similar to what you've seen in past games. The active-time gauge--the per-character bar that fills up over time and lets a character take a turn when it's full--is now divided into quarters. It seems like you can take your turn after the first quarter is full, but every subsequent section that fills up will increase the potency of the action you take. It seems like a good but not-too-complicated way to evolve the old active time battle system everyone's familiar with.

It wouldn't be a Final Fantasy game if you couldn't summon mythical monsters to do the fighting for you, and Square showed off a little of FFXIII's version of summoning. When you bring in a creature, it replaces the party member that summoned it. Summons also have a "gestalt" mode where they change form to gain a different sort of attack. To demonstrate, a Square rep summoned the ice queen Shiva to the battle and then made her transform... into a motorcycle.

Shiva turns into a motorcycle.

After the transformation, another party member hopped onto the bike and started driving into an enemy repeatedly. FFXIII looked pretty good before, but I must say I'm a fair sight more interested in the game after seeing the E3 demo.
Staff
Posted by Yagami

I REALLY need to see this!

Edited by eclipsesis

Fuck nearly made it. You get to *ride* shiva for as long as you want, nice

Posted by Nexas

Don't want to sound like a jackass, but this has been known since the game first announced. You could even see it in last years trailer.

Posted by Steve_C

Brad, it's 'Shiva', not the RE5 girl.

Excited for the game though.

Posted by cc23574

I WANTZ TO RIDE SHIVA!!!!111

Posted by Brad
@Steve_C: Fixed, thanks.
Staff
Posted by HT101

This has piqued my interest in this game more.  I still want to play a demo of it.

Online
Posted by babz

i so want this game. asap

Posted by Cerza

...Shiva... turns into a motorcycle... then you get to hop on a ram repeated wait WHAT!!!

Posted by TheLegendofLuke

OH. MY. GOD.

Dowant.

Posted by Number1

im def gonna play this on my future PS3 it just wouldnt feel right with a xbox controller

Posted by TheHendenpeter

The first trailer for the game were of Shiva and Ifrit transforming into vehiculars.

Oh my, seems my geek cred is showing, how embarrassing.

Posted by sloppyjoe

I like the sound of the battle system.  No details on the level-up system yet?

Posted by SilentHunter7

So...Autobot, or Decepticon?

Posted by chililili
@Nexas said:
" Don't want to sound like a jackass, but this has been known since the game first announced. You could even see it in last years trailer. "
Yes this is very, very, very old news
Posted by Blair

The quartered active time gauge in the battle system reminds me of a modern Chrono Cross.  Seems radical, although what they should really do is just make a sequel to Chrono Cross instead.

Posted by Kiemoe
@Blair said:
" The quartered active time gauge in the battle system reminds me of a modern Chrono Cross.  Seems radical, although what they should really do is just make a sequel to Chrono Cross instead. "
Can I have both?
Posted by Nasar7
@Kiemoe said:
"
@Blair said:
" The quartered active time gauge in the battle system reminds me of a modern Chrono Cross.  Seems radical, although what they should really do is just make a sequel to Chrono Cross instead. "
Can I have both?
"
Pretty please?
Posted by MeatSim

Yes what the hell is happening Final Fantasy games always have such nonsense going on.

Posted by skrutop

So is the ATB combat turned-based like FF4, or more quasi-realtime like FF12?

Posted by cc23574
@skrutop said:
"So is the ATB combat turned-based like FF4, or more quasi-realtime like FF12?"

I havent played it (yet) but from what I have seen it looks like the FFX-2 battle system only a little (just a little) bit slower. If you played that game you'll understand!
Posted by ocdog45

I'm old school, i like turned based RPG's. so never really got use to the active system. nonethe less i will give it try.

Posted by Media_Master

Transformering things in FF,

my interest in this game has increased

Posted by skrutop
@cc23574 said:
"
@skrutop said:
"So is the ATB combat turned-based like FF4, or more quasi-realtime like FF12?"
I havent played it (yet) but from what I have seen it looks like the FFX-2 battle system only a little (just a little) bit slower. If you played that game you'll understand! "
Yeah, I played FFX2, so I know what you mean.  I actually liked that battle system quite a bit.  It does seem like a step backwards for the series, though.
Edited by Al3xand3r

It seems to me that people pretend it's the first time they see Shiva with every new FFXIII showing or something...We saw the Shivacycle last year too (if not earlier), there even was a figurine of it created and a truckload of lesbian jokes to go with it as she's kinda sorta duplicated.

Posted by cc23574
@skrutop said:
"
@cc23574 said:
"
@skrutop said:
"So is the ATB combat turned-based like FF4, or more quasi-realtime like FF12?"
I havent played it (yet) but from what I have seen it looks like the FFX-2 battle system only a little (just a little) bit slower. If you played that game you'll understand! "
Yeah, I played FFX2, so I know what you mean.  I actually liked that battle system quite a bit.  It does seem like a step backwards for the series, though."

Why is that? I actually like it, seems more turn based than FF12.
Posted by ShadowSaber_806

I don't know, Summons transforming into vehicles? Kind of sounds like Square enix jumped the shark.... while on crack.
Still, it might be fun, so I guess I'll just have to check it out for myself when its released.

Posted by ElectricHaggis

I'm glad this is coming out in the spring.  I really need a nice stretch of time with few other games in which to make some progress in an RPG like this.

Posted by darkspirit138

TRANSFORMERS ROBOTS IN DISGUISE DUDUDUDU DUDUDUDU.