Lightning Returns interview with Kitase & Toriyama, FFDream had the privilege to sit down and chat with the creators of Final Fantasy XIII/Lightning saga, specifically the director Yoshinori Kitase and producer/screenwriter Motomu Toriyama. Their art director Isamu Kamikokuryou was also present, and he had quite a bit of input on Lightning. The three discussed the challenges of making the games, music, and direction they wanted to traverse.
Lightning Returns interview with Kitase & Toriyama:
FFDream: In LR, we can only play the character of Lightning. Why did you choose to focus on a single character, while in other titles, the story is usually told with several characters?
Yoshinori Kitase: In this respect, we focus attention on Lightning
because we want players to understand and appreciate this character. In a
more important way to reveal what it is and that is why we are creating
a game that is dedicated to her. Until now, the battle system of Final
Fantasy was based on several fighters. This system with a single fighter
had not yet been tested in the license (note: Mr. Kitase forgot Crisis
Core: FF VII), so we try to provide the greatest possible depth.
FFDream: Can you say for certain if Lightning Returns is actually the last episode of the XIII series?
Toriyama: Yes, the story will end with this new game. FF XIII-2 left a
little to imagine the player’s own end of the game, whereas this time
you will be entitled to a specific purpose, which will be understood by
FFDream: Will the Colosseum appear in Lightning Returns?
Toriyama: What I can tell you is that it will not be that of XIII-2, but
another, in a more specific version of this episode will be present and
integrated into the game.
FFDream: In January, at our last meeting, I offered an illustration. (Note: Lightning with a suit of Private First Class, largely inspired by FF VII) Has it been seen by your team?
Yoshinori Kitase: Once a month, about a hundred people on the team
working to meet Lightning Returns for the project and your artwork was
presented as a gift from abroad.
FFDream: Is Versus XIII still a part of the ‘Fabula Nova Crystallis’ project? Maybe released on PS4?
RP Team Japan: On “Versus”, as you know, the project is that of another
team, we can not tell you anything about it. (Note: Since, as we have
told you in another news report, informants have confirmed a double
development of Versus on Sony consoles current and future)
FFDream: After two games set in Pulse and Cocoon, Lightning Returns arrives in a completely different world. What was the biggest challenge in changing history with it. What were your inspirations, your
influences … ?
Yoshinori Kitase: The theme of this game is based on the last moments of
the worlds of Gran Pulse and Cocoon. The greatest challenge of this
game is that the end of the world is announced to lie only thirteen days
after the start of the game, so it was necessary to find a balance
between the desire to save the world and this very limited time the
player has to explore the world.
FFDream: Until now, all Final Fantasy had their musical themes. for
Lightning Return’s, what kind of music did you ask Mr. Hamauzu and his
team (Suzuki-san and Mizuta-san) to compose?
Toriyama: Lightning Returns marks the end of the story of Lightning, so
we made several arrangements. For example, the theme “Fight Crimson
Blitz” is still based on the music “Blinded By Light” but with some
modifications. I only remember having said the theme of the game “save
the world” and “the redemption of Lightning” to M.Hamauzu who then
created the music according to its interpretation.
FFDream: Will there be other remakes of Final Fantasy games? The seventh episode for example … is eagerly awaited?
Yoshinori Kitase: It is clear that for us, FFX and FFX-2 are our first
HD remake. We know from experience that one can create a quality title
if you put the time and care necessary. Currently, it is difficult to
envisage a remake of VII, however, the experience gained through our
work remastering X and X-2, we will consider more possibilities in the
FFDream: Do you want to include ‘FFX-2: The Last Mission’ in French copies?
Toriyama: We will first focus on the completion of the main story. Once
this is completed, we will consider adding content. The game has been
released for more than 10 years, there will inevitably be people who
have never played it.
FFDream: A collector’s version of FFX / X-2 HD is planned?
Yoshinori Kitase: At the moment, I would say that we have not yet made a
decision about it. But, I promise, we will continue to communicate on
these two games. Recently, we have released a new trailer of what awaits
players … and following feedback from fans, we will respond
accordingly. We ask you to be patient about it.
FFDream: Bravely Default was confirmed earlier in the week for the
West. Can you tell us if you have similar plans for FF Type-0? What do
you think of a HD remake, like FFX and X-2 and KH 1.5?
Yoshinori Kitase: It is not our team that is in charge of this game .. sorry!
Will Final Fantasy X, X-2 HD, Final Fantasy VII be remade in the future?
Unfortunately, they’ve confirmed that this is the last ride for Lightning. They discussed that a remake of VII is not in their plans anytime soon, but may still be done down the road. For all you Final Fantasy VII fans, anything is possible! What caught your eye from the Lightning Returns interview?