For Hajime Tabata, there is no time to rest. The Final Fantasy XV director is currently working on the multiple DLC and free updates the game will be receiving in the coming months, and also the side projects related to its universe. At the same time, he has also set part of his team at Square Enix to work on a new game that will be a brand new IP for the company. While the early state of the project makes it impossible for him to share many details, Tabata’s signature direct approach allows for some details to emerge in a recent interview.
Tabata talked with Eurogamer in the Square Enix offices in Japan, and was able to discuss at lenght matters from the development of FFXV to his immediate future as a game director. He had no trouble in discussing the complains from the fans and the development issues of the game, specifically the limited time and the impossibility of asking for another delay: “There are people out there with the opinion that there’s stuff we released after the game came out that should have been there in the start – that’s fair enough, and I think it’s a fair opinion – but there’s just no way we could have done that physically.”
While most of his team is still working on projects related to FFXV, like the multiplayer expansion, the Windows and Pocket editions, or the spin-off for VR devices, he has set apart a group of 20-30 people to start working on a new game, which will make use of the Luminous Engine, and is targeting to release for the next generation of consoles. Does that mean he knows when PS5 and the next Xbox are releasing? Not really, but he does have some personal estimations that work with the timeline of the project.
Without giving much details, it seems clear that Square Enix has trusted him to develop another big production, even if its still in very early state: “We’ve done a lot of investigation – about how the online functionality will work, moving away from dedicated games machines to cloud processing, how we could use those. A lot of the groundwork was done with Final Fantasy 15 – so we’re in a good position for going into the main development.”
Read the full interview here.