Naoki Yoshida, producer at Square Enix and director on Final Fanasy XVI, took a bit of time post-Christmas to talk about progress on the next numbered game in the Final Fantasy series. While the plan originally was to give an update closer to the end of 2021, things haven’t gone according to plan and we’ll now have to wait until Spring 2022 for the next round of news.
On Twitter, Yoshida spoke about why we haven’t heard anything, which as I’m sure you can guess, is a covid-related issue that has been a talking point for nearly two years now. Due to the pandemic, the game has been hit with a nearly six-month delay and that much of the team has been working from home and that has led to things taking longer.
“When last we spoke, I promised I would have more information on Final Fantasy XVI sometime later in 2021,” Yoshida says. “However, I regret to inform you that I will be unable to keep that promise as complications stemming from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic have delayed the game’s development by almost a half year.”
“In an effort to offset the effects of COVID-19, we’ve had to decentralize that workforce by permitting staff to tackle their assignments from home. This has unfortunately hampered communication from the Tokyo office, which, in turn, has led to delays in—or in extreme cases, cancellations of—asset deliveries from our outsource partners. That said, we have spent much of 2021 addressing this issue, and hope to see its impact to a minimum by the new year, allowing us to better focus on the tasks at hand: increasing graphic resource quality, refining combat mechanics, fleshing out individual battles, putting the finishing touches on cutscenes, and conducting overall graphical optimization.”
Yoshida ends the note by saying that he “deeply apologizes to all those who have been looking forward to learning more about Final Fantasy XVI, and thank you for your continued patience while we focus our combined efforts on development.