After proudly proclaiming a September 30 release date for Final Fantasy XV, it appears that the game will be delayed yet again. You can expect the Japanese role playing game (JRPG) on November 29 this year.
"From the moment we joined this project, our vision was to create a level of freedom and realism previously unseen in the series. Regrettably, we need a little bit more time to deliver on this vision and are confident that this new release date will help us achieve this," said Hajime Tabata the game director in a prepared statement. "As the director and lead of this project, I wish to personally apologise for the additional wait. As a team, we want Final Fantasy XV to achieve a level of perfection that our fans deserve. We kindly ask for your understanding."
And while this boilerplate comment does little to tell us the actual reason for the game's delay, a video on the Final Fantasy XV YouTube channel confirms it is due to a day one patch. In it Tabata states that the game has gone gold (which means it is ready for manufacturing on disc and uploading to online storefronts).
"Our objective with FFXV was to deliver a Final Fantasy of the highest possible quality to every single person who buys the game. We have completed the master version [which indicates the game has gone gold] but when it comes to that highest possible quality we felt that we had not quite reached this standard yet," Tabata said. "Accordingly in order to make this master version an even better product, we have been creating a downloadable add-on known as a patch."
What this means is, unless your PS4 or Xbox One is connected to the Internet, you will not be able to play FFXV as it was envisioned. Tabata wants to avoid this by putting the patch on disc.
"However a patch is not something that can be applied by all players who have bought the game. It is impossible to provide this patch to everyone who plays without connecting their game machines to the Internet," he said.
As for the patch itself, Tabata believes it contains "pretty substantial content", hinting that it has some additional content to go along with it.
"The disc that is going on sale on the 29th of November will contain everything scheduled to be on the day on patch, as well as some extra things on top of that," he said. "So we will be delivering what we consider to be the ultimate quality version of FFXV to all the players who play without connecting online as well."
Unlike other publishers that take gamers' bandwidth for granted, it's heartening to know that Square Enix's delay this time around is for the right reasons. In our impressions of FFXV's demos - Episode Duscae and the more recent FFXV Platinum Demo, the technical aspects of the game require some fine-tuning. Besides, there hasn't been a Final Fantasy game that's launched in a state that warranted a patch and it would be a pity for Square Enix to allow that now. Regardless of the series' content quality, for most part they've been technical showcases for many a console.
Hopefully this is the last delay for the long awaited JRPG. Although a November release puts it in the sights of Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare, Dishonored 2, Gran Turismo Sport, Watch Dogs 2, and Pokemon Sun and Moon. It will be interesting to see if FFXV can stand out in a packed month filled with other high profile games.