SPOnG might love Final Fantasy
– as is evident in the sublime latest release on PlayStation 2
– but we don’t love having to wait for it. FFXII
was released in 2006 in the US and earlier than that in Japan. It’s a similar story with the upcoming re-release of the fifth game in the series, as Final Fantasy V Advance
finally rolls around this month.
The first release of this game in the West was not so long ago – 1999 on PS1 to be exact (the original was released on Super Nintendo in Japan all the way back in 1992), so to see some more of it in Europe is not unwelcome. Excitingly, Final Fantasy V Advance
features the same graphical and interface spice-ups that have blessed recent GBA re-releases, along with some more bonus features. SPOnG had a chat with producer, Hiroyuki Miura, to find out just what they are. Hey, you’re welcome.
Why have you decided to re-release Final Fantasy V
on the Game Boy Advance?
It's been our goal to have FFI
available for handheld play. Additionally, we thought our fans would be particularly excited to see FFV
come to a handheld system for the first time.
The Game Boy Advance has had a history of seeing re-releases of classic Final Fantasy
games. What makes the handheld so appealing for replaying these classics?
The convenience of being able to pick up and play the games any time, anywhere is perfectly suited to the classics. Now that advances in technology have made it possible to bring games from the original television format to the handheld, I think players revisiting our games prefer the simplicity and convenience the handheld format offers.
What improved features can we expect to see in the GBA remake?
Like all of our FF
series GBA remakes, FFV
has received improvements to the interface and controls. Graphics have been added to messages to let you see speakers’ faces, and the battle backgrounds have been completely redrawn. We’ve also included several bonus features, primarily additional jobs and dungeons, as well.
Could you explain a little about the new 30-floor bonus dungeon included in the re-release?
Hiroyuki Miura: FFV's
dungeons have always been packed with intriguing twists and turns. Similar puzzles fill every corner of the bonus dungeon to provide a challenging new experience. Additionally, the bonus dungeon might just hold the key to some unsolved mysteries of the main story.
Enuo, who was a background character in the original game, now appears as an optional boss. What was the reason for bringing Enuo a bit further into the spotlight?
In the main story, Enuo is spoken of as a legendary wicked sorcerer. Because he is such a memorable character in the lore, we decided from the beginning to give him a bigger role this time around. Since the game's original release he's been quite the topic of discussion among fans, which was also a factor in our decision.