E3 06: Final Fantasy XII English Version Update

This long-in-development RPG will finally hit Western shores in October, and we got a glimpse of the localized version at E3.


LOS ANGELES--Square Enix is showing off a localized build of Final Fantasy XII at E3, and, of course, we had to check it out to see how this long-awaited role-playing game is coming along now that it's finally being localized and has a fairly firm release time frame of October (this year, we think). We got to check out a brief demo of the game in English and also speak to members of the development team to find out what's next for the world of Ivalice.

The demo we saw at the show had the game's princess, Ashe, and a group of allies navigating the Temple of Raithwall, and they quickly came upon a boss called the demon wall situated at the end of a long walkway. The party had to light a number of braziers spread out across the bridge before engaging in battle with the massive creature, which was blocking their passage and continually advancing forward. We had a brief moment of nostalgia, thinking back to Final Fantasy IV's own unpleasantly difficult evil wall boss while watching this section. At any rate, the combat here proceeded exactly as we've seen in the import version of the game.

We had to ask if the English version of FFXII will contain any new content, but alas, it'll be merely a direct translation of the Japanese version. At least Square Enix is clearly giving the game its due in terms of localization, as the English text we saw was quite well written and had the same sort of haughty tone as Final Fantasy Tactics, the game that originally spawned the world in which FFXII is set. The voice acting we heard was also particularly well done, and we were interested to hear that a number of the characters exhibited different accents, ranging from British to American to what sounded like Australian. Overall, we were quite impressed with the quality of the localization, from the brief bit we got to absorb.

At this point, we feel like we know just about all there is to know about Final Fantasy XII without just sitting down and playing the thing from start to finish. The passage of time hasn't dulled our interest in the game much, and we're glad to see it's being treated with care in its transition to English. Look for more on Final Fantasy XII to surface in the coming months now that there's a version we can read.

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