Final Fantasy XVI extended gameplay revealed at PlayStation’s State of Play event

Final Fantasy XVI extended gameplay revealed at PlayStation’s State of Play event

Final Fantasy XVI extended gameplay revealed at PlayStation's State of Play event

Final Fantasy XVI just received an extended gameplay reveal during PlayStation’s State of Play event, held early Friday. The 25-minute sequence touched on the game’s Eikons and summonable combat, with producer Naoki Yoshida pointing out that it was not necessary to have played the previous games. In fact, Final Fantasy 16 functions as an entirely separate entry – even mechanically, incorporating real-time action and RPG features similar to Devil May Cry. It’s the first in the long franchise to get rid of its turn-based combat system and will feature a hideout for main character Clive Rosfield, First Shield of Rosaria. FFXVI is set to release on June 22, exclusively on PS5.

In the presentation, Yoshida compared the gameplay experience of Final Fantasy XVI to that of a “high-speed roller coaster ride”. You’ll only play as Clive in the fantasy realm of Valisthea, as his story unfolds across three pivotal and distinct periods of his life – his teens, twenties and thirties. Additionally, the game will incorporate flashback events that will take you back even further to help you better understand his fate and his journey to becoming a Sworn Warrior. Navigation primarily relies on a world map, which updates with new locations and objective markers as players progress through the story. For the record, the main narrative will likely take you 35 hours to clear and can stretch up to 70-80 hours to fully complete the game.

A fast travel mechanic was also shown during the presentation, followed by a montage of stellar locations, ranging from dungeons, lakesides, sprawling bazaars, war zones, and more as Torgal, our faithful wolf companion, stay by our side. (You can also give him commands.) Combat is flashy and happens in real time, with Clive mixing and matching the skills he’s learned from defeating Eikons (magical beasts). Elemental attacks such as creating a path of piercing icicles, infusing weapons with fire, and exhaling blue flames using the power of an Eikon Dragon – similar to Elden’s Grafted Dragon Ring – can be seen in Final Fantasy XVI gameplay footage. Ability points collected from defeating enemies can be used to unlock any equipped Eikon abilities or upgrade existing ones – pretty simple.

To make the experience easier for players unfamiliar with action games, Final Fantasy 16 includes “timely accessories”. The demo showed off a combination of the Opportunity Focus ring and the Opportunity Strikes ring, which slows down time so you can unleash a heavy combo attack with just a single button press. There is also an item that fully automates evasion. Yoshida also mentioned that any party members who accompany Clive on his journey will be fully AI-driven, providing support during combat.

All roads lead to a refuge, which is populated with shops to buy weapons and consumables, and a blacksmith who helps upgrade weaponry. You can then access the Arete Stone to open up a different realm – a virtual training area for honing attacks and other skill moves. An Arcade mode is also included so you can compete for scores with others online.

Expect clashes with tons of Dominants in the overworld, who wield the powers of the Eikons, colossal beasts and mechanized monsters of an ancient civilization. But developer Square Enix says the highlight is the Eikon vs. Eikon battles, which can sometimes feature QTEs (quick events) due to its cinematic scale. “These battles differ based on the Eikon encountered, and each encounter is unique, right down to the gameplay,” Yoshida said. “Players will experience everything from a 3D scrolling shooter to a match-heavy grappling with devastating attacks that encompass the entire battlefield.”

Final Fantasy XVI releases June 22, exclusively on PS5. A PC version was originally slated for release six months later, but Yoshida claimed that fully optimizing the port might take longer.

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