Final Fantasy XV Game Director Hajime Tabata has cast light on the JRPG’s long and troubled development, revealing that there was some “backlash” both internal and external when he took point at the helm in 2012.
Word comes by way of 4Gamer (via Kotaku), who conducted a joint interview with Tabata-san and Katsuhiro Harada of the Tekken franchise. It was here that the FFXV Director spoke candidly about the game’s production woes, and why he believes that the creative team at Square Enix had lapsed into what he describes as a “Final Fantasy disease.”
“Around that time, I realized that among fans as well, there are people who’ve caught Final Fantasy disease.” When quizzed about the nature of said ailment, Tabata stated bluntly that “it refers to people within the company who can’t imagine anything other than their own view of Final Fantasy.”
“Since the root is a strong self-affirmation, one’s own view of Final Fantasy takes more priority than the team’s success. If that view of Final Fantasy isn’t fulfilled, then they’re convinced that it’s bad for Final Fantasy. They think, ‘Since Final Fantasy is a special team, then we are also special because we are making it. When the new Final Fantasy comes out, everybody is going to be so into it.’ But that’s not the reality of the situation, is it?”
At the beginning of its ten-year production cycle, Kingdom Hearts alum Tetsuya Nomura was on board as Game Director – during a time when the JRPG was known as Versus XIII – before Square ostensibly reset development in 2011, five years after it was first showcased during E3 2006.
Now emerging from a development window that spans close to a decade, Final Fantasy XV will finally make its bow on September 30.