There have been Final Fantasy XV release date rumors for almost a decade now, back when Square Enix teased something called "Final Fantasy Versus XIII." Since then there have been a ton of Final Fantasy games released, but the game every fan wants to see (in glorious next-gen graphics) is the confirmed-but-still-mysterious Final Fantasy XV. Since the next-gen consoles are almost here it's no surprise eager fans have begun piecing together facts from the series release history to get a sense of when we'll get a Final Fantasy XV PS4 release date. Here's the E3 trailer to get you pumped (in case you weren't already):
Final Fantasy XV E3 2013 Trailer
Yes, I know it comes out on XBO but in my opinion that's an abomination (and I'm an XBO fanboy.) It'd be like seeing Halo on PS4 or something. So we're gonna focus on the Final Fantasy XV PS4 release date for now because that's the one people are talking about. Specifically, the folks over at GearNuke who put together an analysis of when we can expect the Final Fantasy XV PS4 release date. According to GearNuke's analysis, the Final Fantasy XV PS4 release date is tied to sales of the console:
Seeing the previous releases of Final Fantasy titles (from Final Fantasy VII onwards), Square Enix has launched their titles on the consoles with an install base of over one million. Mainline Final Fantasy games are extremely front loaded and sell the most in week one of the release.
FFVII: 2,034,879 / 3,277,776 (62%)
FFVIII: 2,504,044 / 3,501,588 (72%)
FFIX: 1,954,421 / 2,707,301 (72%)
FFX: 1,749,737 / 2,323,463 (75%)
FFXII: 1,840,397 / 2,322,329 (79%)
FFXIII: 1,516,532 / 1,904,313 (80%)
GearNuke points out that no Final Fantasy game has been released for a Sony console with an install base under four million. Based on Sony's previous sales record in Japan (where Final Fantasy XV would likely release first) it could be a while before Square Enix decides to launch the game. It took 65 weeks for the PS2 to move 4 million units in Japan. The PS3 didn't do nearly as well, taking 100 weeks to reach the same mark. And that's for a Japanese release. Add extra time on top of that to translate the game for U.S. release and a 2016 release doesn't seem impossible. Does this mean we've got a two-year wait until the Final Fantasy XV release date?
Enter the abomination I described earlier.
By launching the game on Xbox One as well as PS4 Square Enix will be able to reach its "safe" number of 4 million potential customers much sooner. Of course, the XBO is a far bigger hit in Western markets than in Japan, so it could lead to a U.S. release first before a Japanese version hits PS4. When the Xbox 360 launched in 2005, Microsoft moved more than 4 million units in North America in just six months. In Japan, however, Microsoft only sold a little more than 100,000.
Until we hear official word from Square Enix on the Final Fantasy XV release date we're left to speculate. But I think the U.S. vs Japanese release question will remain at the heart of the Final Fantasy XV release date. Does Square Enix honor its traditional fan base and wait until it can comfortably move enough units in Japan on the (very likely) better-selling PS4? Or does it launch in the U.S. where a combination of PS4 and Xbox One sales makes their target base number more attainable? Or will both release simultaneously, a first for the series?
Only time will tell. I guess it's a good thing Final Fantasy fans are used to waiting.