SIONL/R: Final Fantasy XV: Episode Duscae (Demo)

I want to strangle the people at Square Enix, sometimes.  I really do.  For all the amazing things that they have done, they also make the most infuriating decisions sometimes.  They recently had a thing where they wanted player feedback about their company and their work.  I am hoping that I was not alone in demanding that they do an HD remake of Final Fantasy VII and VIII.  Not to mention carrying the banner with me that we do NOT want Marvel and Star Wars in Kingdom Hearts III!  I can’t be the only one who doesn’t like that idea!  Someone recently pointed out how the Tron Legacy world in Dream Drop Distance was awesome, as a counter-argument.  I gave them the response that that level worked in that game for the same reason that the original Tron world did – because the style that the film was lends itself to animation.  It isn’t my fault that Disney fucked up and made Tron Legacy a CG color paradise that did, admittedly, look good in the Kingdom Hearts universe (and I hope it comes back in the next game).  Good thing, too, because the rest of that movie sucked.

With the release of Final Fantasy Type-0 in the US, they had a piece of Day-One DLC that they tied specifically to this game.  Didn’t buy it, like me?  Well – tough shit!  This amazing demo was not available to you.  One of those little jackass decision that Square Enix makes.  They aren’t known for doing great all the time, right?  The DLC was the vaunted Episode Duscae, which is a demo for Final Fantasy XV.  A game that has been through the ringer of video game production, with its release still uncertain, the hype train is going to rage-inducing proportions.

Videos of playthroughs are easy enough to find, so I won’t link it here.  From what I’ve heard, the fact that this is a demo was very apparent.  The framerate apparently drops quite a bit during hectic battles.  That’s a problem.  But I am forgiving of it, because this is a demo.  The idea was to showcase the style of the game (whenever it ends up coming out) and get players even more hyped.  In that regard – success!  The elements look fucking amazing!  The Summon that you get to see is so fucking cool!  I want this game!  I want it now!

Oh, right – it isn’t coming out for at least another year!  The last press statement said that they have roughly 60% of the game finished.  That means another year, maybe more.  Part of me thinks that, on a PR level, Square Enix may have made a bad move here.  This Demo didn’t come with a release date.  That’s typically how this works.  You release a demo and give people a release date for when they get the rest of the product.  A smart way to do business.  This game has been at the top of the hype train.  It is going to make of break Square Enix’s future in console gaming.  You’d think that I am for the hype train being in motion, but the truth is – I just want the damn game already!  This is driving me nuts!

If I have to give Disney credit for one thing, it’s that whoever they have got to get the hyped for Avengers: Age of Ultron, they are damn good at their job.  They release trailers in perfect timing to get the audience ready to run to the movie theaters and watch the film.  Each trailer has been better than the last.  Making a trailer is an exact art.  There was a time when Gametrailers made videos on the elements of trailers.  I liked those.  Guess it got downsized, along with the rest of their really creative content.  Square Enix could take some lessons.

First – don’t get your audience salivating, if you are only going to tell them in the next sentence to have to wait.  There will come a point where the audience will be driven nuts by this and just decide to walk.  I keep almost doing that, then you have Square Enix doing this.  Why?!  Look, Square – your audience wants this game.  It’s one thing to make sure that the development team gets the game right, but you know what – you can tease a gamer too much.  When you dangle that carrot and keep denying it, to the breaking point of people’s patience.

What should they have done?  They should have released this demo at E3, with a solid release date.  Instead of forcing people to buy another game, this should have been stand-alone.  But we need a release date.  Hell, give us a tentative one.  Just stop teasing your customers!  Our patience only goes so far.

Until next time, a quote,

“Of all the hardships a person had to face, none was more punishing than the simple act of waiting.” – Khaleed Hosseini

Peace out,

Maverick

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