Final Fantasy Type-0 Alto Crystarium detailed, Tabata and Naora interviewed

Phantoma credits and female governments

Like Final Fantasy XIII, Final Fantasy Type-0 has its own “Crystarium” system. Called the “Alto Crystarium,” the system is used to power up magic, spending “Phantoma” to do so. This week’s Dengeki has an in-depth preview of the system.

Phantoma are dropped by defeated enemies, and are said to be the source for magic. Players suck this up at the end of battles, recovering magic in the process. Each Phantoma has a different type, indiciated by color, which allows you to power up your magic in different areas in the Alto Crystarium.

For example, you can increase your Fire RF magic’s strength, MP usage, call time, reach and speed. Increasing its strength requires six red Phantomas.

In Type-0, magic is based on three elements: fire, ice and thunder. Each spell has one of five ways of attack:

  • SHG (Shotgun) – a powerful close-range attack type that spreads at multiple height levels.
  • RF (Rifle) – a far-traveling attack type, it shoots out straight and has narrow range.
  • BOM (Bomb) – a widespread attack type, it is useful against fast and small enemies alike.
  • MIS (Missile) – a chaser attack type, it chases after the enemy before releasing its magic.
  • ROK (Rocket Launcher) – an explosive and widespread attack type, a target will appear, and the magic will fire in the direction you aim, damaging the enemy and its surroundings.

Dengeki also has an interview with director Hajime Tabata and art director Yusuke Naora. During the interview, the pair discuss the game’s development, price, and other aspects.

According to the pair, only three staff — Tabata, Naora and Testuya Nomura — were working on Type-0 at the time of its 2006 announcement (known as Final Fantasy Agito XIII at the time). The staff were focused on Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII, so it wasn’t until 2008 that development began. Though, with The 3rd Birthday the main focus at that time, it took a year before development was kicked into high gear.

Naora said it’s the longest game he’s ever worked on. When the game was announced at E3 2006, the only thing they had ready was a main visual.

When Final Fantasy Type-0 was dated last week, Square Enix priced the game at 7,700 yen (approx. $98 USD). Asked about the game’s high price, Tabata agreed the price is quite high, but the quality and volume of the game make the price fair.

On multiplayer, the pair said that guests who choose to assist other players in battle will earn”special points” which can be used to unlock a certain feature. Details will arrive in a later update, they said.

For the uninformed, multiplayer in Type-0 is a short-lived experience. You can allow friends to join your game, or vice-versa, in order to assist during battle. If you’re a guest, you must select a special item from the menu screen to join another player’s game. If you’re the host, you can simply toggle the option to allow others to join on and off during missions.

The two spoke in-depth about the Concordia Kingdom, one the game’s four countries. The magazine introduces two new characters, Andoria and Hoshihime, who both appeared in the recent trailer. Andoria is the Concordian princess and the only person who has connection to the Queen Dragon, a physical form of the Souryu Crystal (Concordia houses this crystal in their “Peristylium). Hoshihime is part of the Akatoki, one of the five groups of knights that protect the Peristylium.

The country has an all female government, according to Tabata, and its people aren’t physically strong, but are skilled in summons and dragon / monster control. As opposed to the other three countries, Concordia has more of a fantasy feeling, said Naora.

Speaking on main characters, Tabata said that the protagonist is technically Class Zero (the group of students you play as) in its entirety. The game is meant to tell the historical actions of the class, which is why they’ve chosen this path. Two characters, Machina and Rem, have been highlighted in Type-0 propaganda time and time again. Tabata noted that they’re special characters, though that doesn’t mean they’re the main characters.

Final Fantasy Type-0 has a world map that you’re free to roam even when you’re not on a mission. You can get into battles and power your characters, but there’s also other play elements, according to Tabata.

A real-time strategy component, for example, allows you to play mini-games where your country’s armies are fighting other countries. Win the fight and your country will claim the land, opening access to its towns.

Load times are the only concern with the world map, said Tabata. Since the game’s quality is being pushed to the highest standard, load times are quite long. However, if you install the game on your PSP, load times are much quicker.

Final Fantasy Type-0 releases in Japan on October 13, 2011. A North American and European release date has not been announced.

Thanks, Andriasang (1 and 2).

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