Final Fantasy Versus XIII was Tetsuya Nomura’s baby that never made it out of development hell. Sure, we got Final Fantasy XV after an agonisingly long wait, but – despite still starring sullen prince Noctis – the final product was different to the CG and gameplay trailers shown for Final Fantasy Versus XIII as the director had changed from Nomura to Hajime Tabata.
Light spoilers beyond this point:
The references to Final Fantasy Versus XIII are in Toybox (the Toy Story world). Gearnuke reports that there is concept artwork similar to Versus XIII, as well as a CG trailer that plays at the beginning of the level. The trailer can be seen below:
It’s strikingly obvious that the designs of the Final Fantasy-esque characters in the ‘Verum Rex’ trailer are inspired by Noctis, Ignis, Stella, and Ardyn. The main character even slouches on the steps in a similar pose to the iconic marketing material of Noctis slumped in his throne.
Although Final Fantasy XV was somewhat a critical success, it’s still a shame we never got Nomura’s Versus XIII. We don’t know how good it would’ve been, but the trailers and gameplay footage was incredibly promising. It was the Final Fantasy game I never stopped obsessing over, and its potential made XV an underwhelming experience.
In other Kingdom Hearts 3 news, Sora’s voice actor has said he hopes this isn’t the end of the series, and Square Enix have confirmed when the epilogue and ‘secret ending’ will be available to download.