As mentioned in previous Japan trip reports (I've only got a couple left to go now, I swear!) one of the many trip highlights was personally getting to see the trailers shown in Squeenix's closed theatre at the Tokyo Gameshow. I'm not going to bother going into too much scene-by-scene detail, since my memory is not that photographic and there'll be places all over the web you can find those kinds of summaries by now (not to mention low quality video versions all over youtube). But I (and the rest of our party) did come out of there bursting to talk about it, and we all know how much I love editorialising, so I'm going to focus more on what we thought of it all.
Like many Square Enix fans I’ve had some mixed feelings about a lot of their recent products. They’ve been responsible for producing most of the games that have ever made my all time favourites list (Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy VII and X, Kingdom Hearts II, The World Ends With You), but also a lot I’ve never managed to muster more than ambivalence towards at best (most of the rest of the FF series, including spin-offs) and a good few others that have made me want to take to their lead designers with the Clue-bat of How Not To Destroy Everything I Ever Loved (Chrono Cross, Final Fantasy X-2 and XII, everything they’ve done with FFVII since 1997, and the last five minutes of WEWY). Each to their own and all that, since even most of the rest of titles have their own devoted fans out their somewhere, and their good games still remain really, impressively good – but the bottom line is that it’s very hard to be impressed by the shameless hype-mongering they’ve been keeping up in recent years by releasing all their newest trailers only in the UBER EXCLUSIVE closed theatres at events like the TGS, for which seats are so limited that we missed out on them completely on the first day and had to leave the hotel at 5:30 AM to make it through the queues on the second. The point I’m building up to is that those trailers were going to have to be really damn awesome
to make all that bother seem worthwhile, so getting halfway through the show and already finding myself thinking “Wow, this was completely worth everything!” in between a whole lot of completely fangirlish incoherence was a very welcome surprise. Whatever’s actually in store for us once all these games make it to the shelves, they definitely know how to put on a good show. ( Assorted KH mobile games )( Kingdom Hearts: 358/2 Days )( Kingdom Hearts: Birth by Sleep )( Dissidia: Final Fantasy )( Final Fantasy XIII )( Final Fantasy Agito XIII )( Final Fantasy Versus XIII )
And that was it for the trailer session (please make sure you’ve picked up all your belongings and head for the exit to your right, and oh, btw, the large guy in the Squeenix shirt wants a word with you about that camera he saw you sneakily trying to use in there…) To summarise, really looking forward to Birth by Sleep and Dissidia, definitely interested in all the FFXIII games, not especially fussed about the mobile phone games or Parasite Eve, and majorly disappointed with 358/2 Days and the idea they want us to buy yet another version of AC.
To round off the day later on, most of our group headed on to the official Squeenix Store in Shinjuku (excluding me and velithya
who were camped out by the ArcSys booth asking their staff difficult questions MORE ON THIS LATER), and came back laden with bags in which the full ‘Square Enix Projects’ name had helpfully had the letters ‘A’ and ‘R’ partially blacked out to demonstrate the correct spelling.
The same thing again courtesy of the official website
And verily, we did laugh all our arses off about that too.