Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII doesn’t have a release window yet, but we do have a ton of new details.
The game, wasn’t named Final Fantasy XIII because it would seem like a successor to Final Fantasy XIII-2, and Square Enix didn’t want that. They believe the game has enough unique content to justify a new title and a separate logo.
In an interview with 4gamer, the important people developing the game had a lot to say about their design choices and how they are planning the entire thing.
Producer Yoshinori Kitase called the game a “new experience” and it was also revealed that they had planned to make it Final Fantasy XIII-3 but decided against it. Good decision I would say because they messed up with the last game and it is one of the lowest rated Final Fantasy games of all time. It sold pretty poorly too at 2 million, but they would take that since it used a lot of recycled assets.
The day/night cycle is still being finalized and they aren’t sure how much a single day would be in real life hours. They have said that it will be roughly one to two hours.
It’s a game where the developers want players to replay again, since it’s a world-driven game. According to lead designer Yuji Abe, he wants players to think, “Oh! I didn’t know that event occurred!” when replaying it.
Whatever Lightning does in the game affects the clock and you cannot experience everything the game has to offer in your first try. It will also give players a sense of urgency, since there will be content that won’t be waiting for them. Personally this is a very bad mechanic, since I like to play my games peacefully.
You can read the rest of the interview here, which does not provide more details that we already don’t know, and is in Japanese.