Sakaguchi Speaks About Final Fantasy XI

Square producer Hironobu Sakaguchi, in an interview posted at Core Magazine, recently revealed some interesting details regarding Final Fantasy XI, the massively multiplayer Final Fantasy RPG set to launch in the fall of 2001. Sakaguchi told Core Magazine that the difference between existing Final Fantasy games, and future series incarnations featuring network gameplay is that, in the future games, there will be 2000-3000 characters being played by actual people within a virtual world.

According to Sakaguchi, players will be able to communicate through the network and chat as they play. Sakaguchi assured Core that since Final Fantasy XI is, at its heart, a Final Fantasy game, Square intends to keep the game storyline oriented, saying that, "existing online RPGs for the PC typically have little story development. In that sense, [Final Fantasy XI] will be different from other online RPGs."

Sakaguchi reviled that in-game communication will be somewhat basic, saying that gamers will need to converse through a series of game-related commands. This will allow people from all over the world can actually play together without knowing each other's language. There will also be opportunity to freely chat, however, Sakaguchi thinks that Square might prefer that gamers stick to the English alphabet.

When asked if Square would be releasing Final Fantasy XI simultaneously in America and Japan, Sakaguchi told Core that would be tough to release the game simultaneously in both Japan and America. However, he did add that he didn't want there to be an extended release gap between both regions. Sakaguchi revealed that PlayOnline, (Square's online component company) will most likely utilize separate Japanese and English servers. However, it will remain possible for players from different countries to meet and communicate online.

Sakaguchi also spoke with Core Magazine at length about Final Fantasy IX, as well as the Final Fantasy Movie. Check out the whole interview at Core Magazine and keep coming back to RPGamer for all the Final Fantasy info you can shake a stick at.

by Gabe Wollenburg    
Source: [Core Magazine]
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