Final Fantasy Type-0 HD

Type-0's combat is fast-paced and thrilling, but this port needed more than cosmetic surgery: on the big screen its limitations are exposed.

Key events

Battle Royale free on Xbox One this weekend, Square Enix announces

Battle Royale free on Xbox One this weekend, Square Enix announces

To celebrate the launch of Final Fantasy Type-0 HD.

Bloody horror Battle Royale will be free to watch this weekend on Xbox One, courtesy of Final Fantasy publisher Square Enix.

The offer will be available to all UK Xbox Live subscribers to celebrate the launch of Final Fantasy Type-0 HD.

Why? Well, both feature school kids and violence...?

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Face-Off: Final Fantasy Type-0 HD

Digital FoundryFace-Off: Final Fantasy Type-0 HD

PlayStation 4 and Xbox One compared with the Japan-only PSP original.

It may not seem like it at first glance, but Final Fantasy Type-0 HD is one of the most ambitious remasters we've played. The gap has never been so wide - porting from the almost eleven-year-old PSP hardware with its sub-PS2 spec is a gargantuan task and one that Hexadrive hasn't taken lightly. The talented Japanese development house has crafted a new engine with features rivalling any other modern renderer on the market today, with Square-Enix handling the spruced-up assets. The final product is a mixed bag, but the sheer number of technical accomplishments on hand is very impressive.

Let's get the basic stuff out of the way - the original 480x272 resolution of the game sees a sizable 17x bump to full 1920x1080 on both consoles. SMAA 1Tx handles anti-aliasing duties, resulting in a sharp and clean image throughout thanks to its robust temporal component, where information from past frames is blended into the present. Anisotropic filtering is also used to an acceptable degree preventing textures from becoming blurry at oblique angles. Hexadrive clearly understands the importance of image quality and has taken measures to ensure that the resulting image is always crisp and clean. Between the two console versions we have full image quality parity here - something which extends to every visual facet of the game.

Then we come to frame-rate - the HD version of the game retains the 30fps update of the original PSP title and does so with little difficulty. Both consoles turn in a stable 30fps with only minor frame-pacing issues interrupting the fluidity, particularly on Xbox One. While this may seem like a disappointment, the game was coded for 30fps originally and would not function properly at 60fps without overhauling core systems. According to one of the key programmers, the optimisation necessary to run at 60fps would have been minimal in comparison to the massive required overhaul of the game's underlying systems. It was simply beyond the scope of this project, which says a lot considering how many other changes were implemented.

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Final Fantasy Type-0 HD review

Final Fantasy Type-0 HD review

Might and magitek.

When the Khmer Rouge took control of Cambodia in the mid-70s, the term 'Year Zero' was coined to describe the idea of revolutionary change. Existing traditions would be thrown away, and a new culture would be established. Type-0 similarly alludes to a fresh start: the idea behind the original PSP game, released four years ago in Japan, was to hit the reset button on the Final Fantasy series and begin anew.

Opening with a grimly protracted death scene is certainly one way to prove your determination to do away with the old order, not least because the ailing soldier in question is gasping his last while leaning against his blood-soaked Chocobo steed. It's startling to see such an icon of the series - a sacred cow, even - so cruelly slain, and it makes for an arresting start. We've all seen our fair share of gritty reboots before, but for Final Fantasy this is unusually bleak.

And yet what seems like a strong, surprising start all too soon succumbs to type. The cutscenes drag on until you're wishing the poor chap would just die already, while you're bombarded with unfamiliar terminology, such that series newcomers could be forgiven for having no idea what's going on. In short, the four nations of Orience are at war, and you play as Class Zero, an elite group of 14 cadets from a magic academy tasked with driving back the aggressors.

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Final Fantasy 15: Episode Duscae demo detailed

Playable day one with Final Fantasy Type-0 HD.

The upcoming Final Fantasy 15 demo, subtitled Episode Duscae, will be available to play on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One from the day that accompanying game Final Fantasy Type-0 HD goes on sale.

New Final Fantasy Type-0 HD gameplay

New Final Fantasy Type-0 HD gameplay

More Tokyo Game Show madness.

The Final Fantasy gameplay keeps on coming: this time it's for Final Fantasy Type-0 HD, due out in Europe on 20th March 2015 for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.

At Tokyo Game Show today Square Enix released the gameplay video, below, that shows off Type-0 HD's fast-paced combat as well as the worldview.

As previously announced, Final Fantasy Type-0 HD comes with a demo of Final Fantasy 15. Each copy of Type-0 HD comes with a download code for the demo.

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Final Fantasy 15 demo confirmed, Nomura leaves director's chair

Final Fantasy 15 demo confirmed, Nomura leaves director's chair

Playable demo dubbed Episode Duscae launching alongside Type 0 HD, new in-game trailer revealed.

Final Fantasy 15 is getting a playable demo, dubbed Final Fantasy 15 Episode Duscae, that will be launching alongside Final Fantasy Type 0 HD in Europe on 20th March 2015.

The announcement comes as the Tokyo Games Show opens its doors, with Final Fantasy Type 0 HD playable on the show floor and a new trailer released for Final Fantasy 15. The trailer - our first look at the game since it was announced at E3 last year as the successor to stillborn project Final Fantasy Versus 13 - features a more action-orientated take on the long-running RPG series, with clear deferences to western games such as Grand Theft Auto and Assassin's Creed.

Part of that new action bent can be put down to the presence of director Hajime Tabata, who has been confirmed as the replacement for Tetsuya Nomura. Tabata previously worked on games such as Final Fantasy 7: Crisis Core, as well as Final Fantasy Type 0.

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