For the Microsoft press conference, Microsoft saved their biggest announcement for last: Square-Enix’ Final Fantasy XIII is no longer an PlayStation 3 exclusive. It’s also heading over to the Xbox 360 for both North America and Europe. What? No Japan? Apparently, Japanese Xbox 360 fans won’t be getting FFXIII on Microsoft’s platform. Seems like Square Enix is trying hard to efficiently maximize audience reach.
As to why they ended the exclusivity with Sony? Here are some excerpts of answers from Square-Enix executive Shinji Hashimoto. All answers courteousy of Kotaku’s Square-Enix live blog:
1:53 Dean Takahashi asked why they decided to end the exclusive with Sony.
1:55 Says Hashimoto: “We considered the hardware situation. Because of that, we considered the spread of the hardware, so that’s why we decided that.”
Will their be differences? Not if Square-Enix can help it.
1:56 Question: How will the Xbox 360 and the PS3 versions be different
1:57 Says Kitase: We planned on having the contents the same, but obviously the Blu-ray and the DVD will be different.
As for how many discs the Xbox 360 version will take:
2:01 I ask: How many discs will it ship on?
2:01 Kitase says: “That’s still undecided.”
2:01 I ask: “About how many?”
2:02 He laughs and won’t answer
When we’ll see it? Probably not any time soon…
2:02 first they will finish ffxiii in japan. and then they will start localization for english.
2:03 at that point, they will start the xbox 360 development.
2:03 so says hashimoto.
Either this is some sort mistranslation or error, but at this rate we’ll not see FFXIII until when? 2010?
Finally, what about Final Fantasy Versus XIII? Will that be multiplatform?
Question: “Will FF Versus 13 be multi plat?”
That’s surprising, if true. I mean, why hold back a spin-off to the original? We’ll see how long this stays exclusive.
So that’s that. What a way to end a press conference. Meltdowns and the rejoice of fanboys are lighting up forums all over the net. Me? I’m disappointed that we won’t be seeing FFXIII any time soon. It seems like we’ve been waiting forever. I guess I can continue gushing over the CG trailers.