Square Enix Party 2007 Round-Up
Our thoughts and first-hand impressions from Square Enix's annual Tokyo event.
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Making the trip from Nagoya to Tokyo is a real pain in the butt. It's a two hour train ride on the bullet train, and it costs a good $200 just to get into central Tokyo. For Square Enix's annual party out in Makuhari Messe (the same location as the Tokyo Game Show), you're looking at another hour plus another $10. Not the most exciting of trips, but given the chance to play the latest Squeenix titles, it's worth the trip.
This year's party was even better than the last one, with a ton of titles announced, along with the playable titles.
Before the party even got started, the company held a press conference a few days earlier to show off their latest titles, such as Final Fantasy Dissidia and The Last Remnant, a totally new RPG franchise from the man behind FFXII Revenant Wings. Of course, this being the 20th anniversary of Final Fantasy, there was also another remake in the works. This time, it's Final Fantasy IV receiving the upgrade on the DS no less. Using the same engine as Final Fantasy III, FFIV DS seems to keep the same great storyline of the original while bringing the game up to speed with technology.
"The biggest draws in Japan right now are the DS and the Wii, so it's no surprise that they also had a good showing at this festival."
The biggest draws in Japan right now are the DS and the Wii, so it's no surprise that they also had a good showing at this festival. Dragon Quest Swords for the Wii had a huge booth in the corner of the convention center, and was a total blast to play. The game is very linear compared to Dragon Quest games of the past, as you could only go down pre-determined paths. Enemies seemed to pop up at set points too. However, the way that combat is handled makes all the difference in the world.
True to the name, the game lets you handle the Wiimote as if you're handling a sword, and in the demo you were given a vertical and horizontal slash as well as a thrust. First, by pressing the A button to select your centre point, you'll set your target, and then you can go to town on any enemy on the screen. What type of attack you use is essential because some enemies can avoid them. We found this out when a knight on a slime deftly avoided all of our horizontal slashes by bouncing off of the slime, but he was helpless against our thrusts. Ahem.
Another title that we got our hands on was the eagerly anticipated Final Fantasy 7: Crisis Core. Playing more like an action RPG than anything else, the demo allowed you to fight against either Genesis (a new character and supposed buddy of Sephiroth) and against Bahamut, the king of the dragons. Combat was actually pretty easy to get a handle of; Circle controled your primary actions, and by pressing the L or R triggers, you could cycle between attacks, magic and items. Zack also auto-targets anything close to him, so it makes hunting down those pesky guards even easier. The most shocking thing about the game is that the graphics are near PS2-level. They're nearly on the same level as Kingdom Hearts II and that's saying a lot seeing as that game is one of the most visually appealing games on the system.
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Final Fantasy XIII
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