Patterns are beginning to emerge. A mere dozen titles in, and our list already has two fantasy RPGs from Poland, both main rival football games, and now this, our third Final Fantasy game to make the grade. Luckily for everyone, there are only a finite number of games from this unstoppable franchise that Square Enix can make in any one year, though you’d be forgiven to think they make nothing else.
Final Fantasy Agito XIII originally began as a mobile phone game, the Before Crisis: Final Fantasy VII title proving exceedingly popular with keitai-obsessed Japanese kids, their rapacious desire for Final Fantasy to invade every aspect of their lives justifying the creation of another title in a similar vein. By August 2008, however, Square Enix had announced that Agito would launch exclusively on the PSP, the mobile phone version promptly discontinued.
A part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis: Final Fantasy XIII compilation, Agito shares similar themes and motifs found in sister titles Final Fantasy XIII and Final Fantasy Versus XIII. The portable game has its own characters, world (named Orience) and back-story, however, with events centring around a school of magic called Peristerium. A dozen students of this arcane academy make up the cast, each sporting a different weapon from scythes to playing cards (see chap above). The plot is apparently mammoth, with staple Final Fantasy themes of industry versus nature and the totalitarianism of a military regime exerting a policy of hegemony over its neighbouring countries driving the action. One lone island nation, protected by a crystal, is suddenly thrown into disarray when the gem cracks, leaving the isle vulnerable to attack.
The combat system will be similar to Crisis Core’s but also incorporate a variation of the Active Time Battle mechanic found in other Final Fantasy games.
A Western release of Final Fantasy Agito XIII has yet to be confirmed at this time, though we are optimistic it will grace European shores at some point during 2011.