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Square working on four GBA titles

And only Final Fantasy Tactics is a port…

Squaresoft has revealed in the latest issue of Japanese gaming weekly Famitsu that it is working on a total of four GameBoy Advance titles, including the previously announced enhanced port of Final Fantasy Tactics from PSone. Headlining the new cast is Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicle, the first product of Fund Q, which if you'll remember was set up by former Nintendo president Hiroshi Yamauchi. The game is being developed by Square subsidiary Game Designer Studios, and will be the first of the four to appear when it is released in Japan next spring, making it Square's first release on Nintendo hardware since Final Fantasy VI in 1994. FFCC will be played primarily on the GBA, but will hook up to the TV to reflect data and presumably perform other functions. The idea is that more than one GBA can be hooked up to the same GameCube, and a player can request help from another gamer playing on a different GBA. Communication is expected to be of paramount importance. The other two titles are slightly more obscure, but, to fans of Square's past works, even more exciting. One of the games will be an adventure based primarily around Chocobos, those cute yellow bird creatures which roam Final Fantasy games and act as transport and (in Final Fantasy X at least) a source of power. Square has also confirmed that it is producing a brand new title in the Seiken Densetsu series. Seiken Densetsu, for those confused, is known better by its Western name: Secret of Mana. Although originally expected to be a port, the best translation of the Famitsu article we've seen so far points to a brand new adventure. However, reports conflict here and there so it might be worth waiting for further clarification. The news that Square is taking Nintendo's handheld platform so seriously bodes very well for the future of the two companies' relationship, which had looked a little rocky soon after it kicked off when outgoing president Yamauchi-san criticized Square's online RPG, Final Fantasy XI, during an analysts' meeting in June. Nevertheless, Final Fantasy on the GameCube has been described as "ground-breaking software" by the outspoken former president. But, Cubists, before you go uncorking that champagne about the possibility of further Nintendo titles, it's worth remembering that Square are more shrewd about their business these days, and developing for GBA - the second biggest platform behind PlayStation 2 - is good business sense, not a developer crying its way back into the Nintendo fold. Secret of Mana, though. Gulp! Update - further reports unearthed this morning lend credence to the "new Seiken Densetsu" theory, and we do know that Nintendo subsidiary Brownie Brown, responsible for the original series, is developing the game. Square is also said to be assigning the series' former producer to the title in hopes of emulating its success once again. Related Feature - Square and Nintendo exchange blows

Source - Famitsu (thanks Gordon)

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