New screenshots from Square Enix show off the Final Fantasy 15's protagonist Noctis using different guns during combat, including a weapon that literally fires shockwaves.
Keeping fans interested in a game that has been delayed for over a decade should be difficult, but it's a testament to the franchise's place in gaming history that Final Fantasy 15 remains one of the most eagerly anticipated releases in 2016. Even Final Fantasy 15 getting a two month delay earlier this summer wasn't enough to diminish the hopes of JRPG gamers everywhere, and for each misstep Square Enix manages to answer back with an enticing Final Fantasy 15 gameplay demo to placate fans.
The latest screenshots from Square are no different from their predecessors in the way they are both intriguing and innovative. Final Fantasy 15 is a dramatic shift in direction and tone from the last several instalments in the series, and the inclusion of gun-based gameplay is just one example of the myriad ways in which Square is attempting to revitalize the franchise and its genre. While gamers have been given plenty to consider in demos of sword-based combat and examples of the magic Noctis and his crew can employ, the use of guns has been something mostly just discussed rather than demonstrated - until now.
The screenshots, seen below, show Noctis wielding several different models of guns, including a handgun and a scoped combat rifle that will actually let players attempt to snipe enemies from afar. Given how Square stressed that targeting specific body parts of different enemies was key during the Final Fantasy 15 PAX West Demo, the ability to use a scoped weapon makes a lot of sense, enabling players who prefer more tactical approaches to combat.
The biggest star of the newly released photos, however, looks to be the Assault Attack, a Machinery class weapon that fires shockwaves and has a special attack that causes enemies to clump together so they can be targeted more easily as a group. It's Final Fantasy 15's version of a gravity gun, essentially, and beyond the fact that its implementation looks fun and nuanced, the existence of a gun that so obviously benefits one kind of tactical approach speaks to the depth of combat the game should be able to offer. The existence of a Circular Saw weapon, confirmed in the last new screenshot, is even more proof of that depth.
Final Fantasy 15 is a game that appears to have used its incredibly long development time to craft a very detailed and refined adventure. Square's decade-long Final Fantasy 15 narrative will have to shoulder a lot of the weight of expectation as well, but it appears that, as far as gameplay is concerned, Final Fantasy 15 is well on its way to being the holiday blockbuster many expect it to be.
Final Fantasy 15 will release on November 29, 2016 for PS4 and Xbox One.