The EGX convention featured a spectacular atmosphere with plenty of varieties of games and developers without feeling too crowded or over packed. The queues weren’t too long for most games either, however I only aimed to look at and review two different games. These being Kingdom Hearts 2.8 and Final Fantasy XV which I got to play demos of. However, I did not get to speak to developers of the games, as they were not present which is disappointing as I didn’t get to receive information on the development of either of these games. Therefore these reviews will be entirely gameplay, graphics, and story based.
Firstly I played Kingdom Hearts 2.8 on the PS4, which was located in the Square Enix section of the convention as that’s the co-developer of the game alongside Disney. Remake speaking it is considered the 3rd in the series with many side story games from other platforms like the DS for example being ported over onto bigger consoles with these games. Similarly to the games before it, Kingdom Hearts 2.8 is a PS4 collection of many of these other side games consisting of two games and one movie in HD.
The demo started off with one of the new games featured 0.2 Birth by sleep. Its main protagonist (Aqua) had to traverse a small area to rewind time by finding cogs to spin. For a demo I felt this was a perfect way to demonstrate how the game would play out as its not giving away any spoilers whilst still providing a basic story and a goal. The voice acting for Aqua I felt was very well done, it was clear and crisp, which is what you would expect from a prestigious developer like Square Enix. The way the mouth and voice come together however is different which is expected from an originally Japanese game.
Also the improvement in graphics from the original game (referring to birth by sleep as an example) is highly noticeable as you can now see much more detailing than you could before. Also the animations appear smoother and cleaner, this is most likely due to the upgrade in console allowing such features to be upgraded. The combat appeared to stay true to its original design, but, there could be features added in which were unseen in the demo however, the quality of the animations and designs were again improved greatly. The overall design of the game is again true to its series keeping the Final Fantasy and Disney styles mixed together, which personally I feel is a beautifully weird twist on the series.
Finally, I played Final Fantasy XV (fifteen) which is again developed by Square Enix so it was very close to the Kingdom Hearts section of the convention. The queues for FFXV had to be one of the longest and slowest by looking at it, which goes to show the amount of hype behind this highly anticipated edition to the globally renowned series. The game is an open world game with features that let you drive cars, ride chocobos and even fish.
The demo started off in the middle of a desert in what looked to be a garage. I went straight to the story progressing option, which lead me to a character with a cut scene. This lead to the close up of the characters face, truly demonstrating the highly detailed graphics. The voice acting quality is spectacular, again clear and crisp which is expected. It’s clear that 10 years in development did the games graphics good as well as the hyper realistic looking characters are extremely detailed and life like, especially in cut scenes.
Outside of cut scenes, the animations are incredibly smooth with the running and the combat, which add to the overall hyper realistic aspect of the art style. The combat I enjoyed as you had the freedom to take any enemy in a group in however you liked which I know a lot of JRPGS including past final fantasy games haven’t done. You can also get the features to be able to do certain special attacks; For example the warp attack, which would send the protagonist to the enemy whilst attacking dealing extra damage. Also the game incorporated different characters with different attacks, which I felt was a nice edition to the combat. The lighting for this game was also very impressive especially when it would reflect of certain objects giving a very satisfying look to the games art style.