Fans may have felt limited when Square Enix confirmed that the open-world experience for Final Fantasy XV is not set throughout the entire game. However, game director Hajime Tabata has confirmed that there's a little more complexity to the mechanic.
In an interview with DualShockers, Tabata stated that the linear aspect of Final Fantasy XV is situated at the end of the game. Moreover, there is an option to get back to the open-world experience once the player has already hit the part where the game has a more linear progression.
“To go back on the more linear part of the game… it actually transfers into that linear part of gameplay when the story ramps up and gets into its final stages. Rather than the latter half of the game, it’s very close to the end of the game, so to speak.”
Tabata gives a hint as to where the split in gameplay happens, which is a train segment. According to him, the gameplay structure “completely changes.” From there, it is not possible to go back and forth on the world map. However, if the player is already at that point in the game, there is a menu feature that will allow the player to access areas that were previously roamed before.
The creator emphasizes the fact that there will be a drastic change in the game once that certain point is reached. He didn’t give any more details as to what these changes could be.
The good takeaway from this is that, from the looks of it fans can enjoy a lot more open-world experience in Final Fantasy XV. What I’m interested to know is whether the function to go back to the open-world following the gameplay split refers to the world that a player has already explored, or the entire FFXV world, explored or not.
Final Fantasy XV will be out on the PS4 and Xbox One on Nov. 29.