Really, anyone old enough to remember Square's 1997 PlayStation debut with Final Fantasy VII
– a franchise that had only existed on Nintendo platforms – shouldn't have been that
shocked to see Square president Yoichi Wada sneak back onto the stage during Microsoft's E3 press conference
to announce "one more thing": Final Fantasy XIII
would be multi-platform.
Speaking with GamesIndustry.biz, Wada said, "We always consider the territory and hardware for titles, and I just want to make sure that we're neutral about dealing with companies." Though he conceded that "in Japan ... the Xbox 360 isn't really that strong yet" he acknowledged that in "North America Microsoft is doing very well with its hardware." Sounds about right to us.
Throw in escalating development costs, and you've got a no-brainer. Wada sums it up: "We're now in the age of the multi-platform ... in order to offer our product to the vast majority of gamers we need to deal with multiple companies and platforms." Multiplatform third-party games are increasingly the norm; however, with certain "now-gen" Square Enix titles remaining selectively exclusive (think Infinite Undiscovery
), we're not quite ready to call it for Final Fantasy Versus XIII