Square Enix Dev Discusses Dropping Final Fantasy’s Numbers

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Could Final Fantasy XVI be the last numbered title in the beloved RPG franchise? That’s unknown, though game producer Naoki Yoshida has brought the issue up with Square Enix executives.

Speaking with GQ (and spotted by Twitter user Wario64), Yoshida touched on how the number format for Final Fantasy mainline games can be confusing for audiences. “A lot of players are going to come in and they’re going to look at it like a comic book where you have to read from the beginning to know what’s going on now,” the Final Fantasy XVI producer said. Yoshida added that marketing has to ensure audiences know that playing every game in the franchise isn’t necessary.

When asked about removing numbers altogether–similar to the God of War and Legend of Zelda franchises–Yoshida noted he’s broached the topic with Square Enix. “That’s actually something that I’ve discussed with the higher-ups,” he said. “Maybe it’s about time we removed the numbers from the title.

“For example, you have Final Fantasy XIV. You get a new player coming in and it’s like, ‘Wait a minute, why do I have to play Final Fantasy XIV if XVI is out?’ Why don’t we just call it Final Fantasy Online–just get rid of the number altogether, and that’ll make it easier to understand,” Yoshida added.

Yoshida then says it’ll be up to whoever develops and markets future Final Fantasy titles whether the numbers continue. On top of producing XVI, Yoshida also directed Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn. So he has history with the MMO and now single-player sides of the long-running series.

As for the upcoming game, GameSpot has a new Final Fantasy XVI preview detailing the opening hours of the RPG. In addition, Final Fantasy XVI PS5 bundle preorders are now live.