As we reported earlier, Famitsu had information on Final Fantasy XIII-2. This week they held an interview with Motomu Toriyama (Director), Yusuke Matsui (Battle Director), and Tetsuya Nomura (Character Designer).
Serah’s Background Story
The Tokyo Game Show trailer gave us our first glimpse of Snow since the game was announced, along with our first time seeing Serah and Snow reunited. It seems that this is the first time they’ve been reunited in two years. Serah is the only character who remembers Lightning as being alive. Everyone else, including Snow, believe she is either dead or turned to crystal.
Snow does believe Serah’s words though and heads off on a journey to find Lightning. He doesn’t return, prompting Serah to head off with Noel in pursuit of her sister.
Time Paradoxes are a central component of Final Fantasy XIII-2, Toriyama saya. This includes both gameplay and story.
Story wise, Lightning no longer exists in the world due to the effects of a time paradox. As previously mentioned, it seems Serah’s the only one to have the memory of a world with Lightning. We will find out why this is the case as we progress through the game’s story.
Time paradoxes affect different part of the world in different ways. In the Bresha Ruins, a time paradox has caused Atlas to appear. The way you’ll figure out how the paradoxes have affected each area is somewhat set up like a mystery.
The time paradoxes began happening at the ending of Final Fantasy XIII. Because of this fact you will be unable to go back in time before that point.
As mentioned earlier, the Hope who appears in the trailer is 24 years old and is a leader of a group called “Academy”. The group is searching for energy in the absence of fal’Cie, and because of his research he knows of Serah’s time travelling.
The Tokyo Game Show trailer provided our first true introduction to Caius. He’s an enemy with influence over Valhalla and the regular world. He is also from the future, much like Noel.
As far as Noel goes, he’s from a world of few people, which is why is way of speaking is fragmented. He is also very happy to meet people. Due to time paradoxes his memory has become vague and he’s not sure if some major event has happened in his time.
Both Lightning and Noel are shown in the trailers surrounded by a black smoke. This smoke is known as “Chaos”, and has something to do with Valhalla.
The trailer also shows a new character named Yeul, who has deep ties to Caius and is a major character. Her character was designed by Hideo Minaba, Nomura explained, who also did adult Hope’s clothing.
Matsui mainly spoke with the magazine about the monster raising component in the game. They’re placing a good amount of time on this area of the battle system.
The game will have rare monsters, which may have a low encounter rate or be hard to capture (as a few examples). You also will not be able to add giant monsters to your party (No adding Adamanchelid’s, etc as revenge for all those you killed in Final Fantasy XIII).
Different monsters have different difficulties in terms of commands. Even if you fail at inputting a command the monster will still attack, although succeeding with a command will result in greater damage.
Battle and Character Growth
Final Fantasy XIII-2 has the concept of “Blood Damage.” Each time you are hit with blood damage, you lose a portion of your max HP. In Final Fantasy XIII if you had a healer in your party you could recover from damage without trouble. In XIII-2 however you can’t recover blood damage, thus making you need to be more strategic and faster in battles.
Toriyama mentioned that the staff is currently making adjustments to areas they feel might be too hard. Keep in mind though that they are including an easy mode in the game, and are able to switch between modes at any time.
XIII-2 also gives you the ability to freely change your battle leader (the character you are controlling) during battle. When your current leader dies you will be switched to another character, thus taking out XIII’s issue of getting a game over if your leader died.
In addition to taking direct control you can also reassign AI routines. You can select between “normal,” “concentrated,” and “scattered.” This is a part of the new “Paradigm Tune” system.