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Updated: Square Enix Announces Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII


Jason Clement

UPDATE: We've added concept art and the announcement video below.

 

As the 25th Anniversary Celebration for Final Fantasy kicks off in Japan, Square-Enix broke news of a direct sequel to Final Fantasy XIII-2 called Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII.

 

This title will mark the end of Lightning's story in the series, reportedly. Series director Motomu Toriyama says that Lightning will be a much stronger character in this game and will face her final battle, so he asked the character designer to convey the "power" in her eyes.

 

Series producer and showrunner Yoshinori Kitase also noted that the game will be much more active and the world features more interactive environments than before saying that "players can control Lightning as they see fit."

 

He also brings up how players can customize her outfits, and that not only do they affect her appearance but her abilities as well. The controls and movements will be more extensive here as well, with Lightning being able to hang off ledges, pull herself up, duck behind corners, and even move around during battles.

 

As far as the world goes, it will be based on four different islands and touches on three different themes: gothic, mechanical, and fantasy. The story will also feature a real-time countdown of sorts, as the world is set to end in 13 days from the game's outset, so Lightning has 13 days and 13 hours to stop it.

 

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is slated to release sometime in 2013 for PS3 and 360. Check out concept art and video footage of the game's announcement (with English captions) at the Final Fantasy 25th Anniversary Celebration below.

 

 

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