“From Weekly Famitsu’s interview with Motomu Toriyama this week comes word that the Japanese version of Final Fantasy XIII-2 was recently completed. The staff is currently at work on the game’s North American and European versions, and on download content.
The Japanese version of XIII-2 will lead the rest of the world with a December 15 release on both PS3 and Xbox 360.
Toriyama shared a number of bits about XIII-2 with Famitsu, covering download content, play time and more. Here are the major points from the interview, based off Sokuho@Hokanko’s summary.
The main story can be cleared be cleared in 30 to 40 hours. However, there’s a bunch of extra stuff beyond this.
The game’s story is split into chapters, each taking about 2 to 3 hours. It appears that one of the goals was to make the chapters fit right into your daily schedule.
You can expect plenty of replay value by rewinding time in the Historia Crux system. The time rewind system, which resets the area to its initial point, is meant to let players try to see what types of things they can do. You’ll find a number of events known as “Paradox Endings” if you play around with this system.
Once you’ve cleared the game, if you restart using your save file, you’ll return to the Historia Crux just before the final boss battle. You’ll be able to use this as a “New Game Plus” style feature, rewinding individual areas to replay them with your more powerful characters. There are also a number of Paradox Endings that you won’t be able to try out until your second passthrough.
Bonus Goodies for FFXIII Players
Toriyama confirmed once again that the game will give an item (or items) to those who have a save file from the original FFXIII, but once again he did not share specifics. Those with a save file will also get a wallpaper, he revealed.
The game’s DLC is being worked on by a separate team consisting of younger staff. This team is separate from the team that’s working on the overseas version of the game.
The first DLC will be the boss monster Omega (details here). In general, the game’s monster DLC will consist of boss fights that you fight at a colosseum, an area that can’t be entered in the main game. If you crystalize the DLC boss, you can make it into a party member and take it out from the colosseum with you.
In addition to monsters, the game will include non-monster enemies as well. While Omega is the first DLC, Toriyama is hoping to release costumes for Serah and Noel quickly. He’s also hoping to release large scale content, as well as content that brings changes to the Historia Crux.
The current plan is to release download content through Spring of next year at a pace of once every two weeks. Toriyama would not share final DLC pricing, only saying that it’s currently under investigation.
The DLC will not affect Trophies or the story, Toriyama assured. These areas can be completed with the disc on its own.
Many of the initial pieces of DLC are actually in the form of retailer specific pre-order bonuses. Square Enix has announced all the pre-order bonus items they’re going to announce, Toriyama confirmed, so you can probably decide where you want to buy the game now. There’s currently no plan to release the pre-order items separately.
XIII-2 has multiple composers. They all had specific roles, it seems. Masashi Hamauzu, returning from the original, focused on Lightning and areas from the original. Naoshi Mizuta headed up music related to Noel. Mitsuto Suzuki worked techno pop and other modern tastes into his contributions.
The vocal pieces from the original were apparently well received, so they’ve done more of this for the sequel
A few other bits mentioned by Toriyama in the interview:
- The puzzles you encounter as part of the story aren’t too difficult, but the optional puzzles include some so difficult that Toriyama himself can’t clear them.
- The game’s load times have been improved beyond previous builds. While it’s a bit long at start of an area, after this there’s hardly any loading.
- You can visit the same area in multiple time periods. They’ve made it so that the area has clear differences across each time period.
- Both your characters and the Chocobos you ride can jump. You’ll even be able to increase the characters’ jumping ability in the latter half of the game.
- During battle, it’s pretty much a requirement that you make use of Paradigm Shifts. However, if you have difficulty winning a battle, you can switch to easy mode whenever you like.
- The Moogle Lock system was redone multiple times. Initially, it was just a straight gauge, but they eventually set it so that its color would match the monster’s movements.