Several pieces of information reveal that the developers behind Final Fantasy XV will start working on a Luminous Engine-powered new IP in early 2018.
Speaking to IGN, Final Fantasy XV director Hajime Tabata said the team will begin work on its “next project” at the “beginning of next year.” Tabata said the team’s “diverse work on Final Fantasy XV” served as a “fantastic preparation for whatever the next challenge is.”
Apparently, the team’s next project will be powered by a fully-upgraded Luminous Engine. “I think we’ve only got everything we’ve wanted to do with Final Fantasy XV out of Luminous Engine,” Tabata told Ars Technica last month. “Certainly the next project we’re looking forward to doing now we can only do because of that experience developing Final Fantasy XV. We fully intend to use the Luminous Engine, and keep tweaking it, and upgrading it, and taking it to the next level.”
While the Luminous Engine was introduced in 2011, the sole video game to use it is Final Fantasy XV; however, this is understandable as Square Enix wished to test the engine first on a retail game. Back in 2015, former Square Enix Worldwide Technology Director Julien Merceron said the Luminous Engine had to be proven first in a retail game before using it to develop other titles.
With Square Enix currently working on a possible sequel to Final Fantasy Type-0 (referred to as Final Fantasy Type-1 by many), fans assumed Tabata would return to direct a new entry in the series, which the director refuted in a recent interview with Fandom. “For me and a lot of the dev team, Type-1 is something that interests them and something that they eventually want to pursue, but the current part of where we’re at after doing all these things for Final Fantasy XV, we think, it’s most appropriate to build on that experience and build and do it even bigger and more expansive for the next project. So, at the time being, Type-1 doesn’t fit in line with that approach.”
At present, nothing is known about Square Enix’s new IP, though a job posting for Tabata’s team in 2015 said Square Enix is hiring to “create a new IP that will serve as an upcoming mainstay of Square Enix.”
Since Final Fantasy XV released in 2016, the game has received several free content updates as well as paid and free DLC. At present, the game has an ongoing Assassin’s Creed crossover event and is set to receive multiplayer expansion ‘Comrades’ in autumn 2017 and the last character episode in December 2017 with ‘Episode Ignis’. Outside of Final Fantasy XV’s PC port and the chibified Final Fantasy XV experience for mobile devices, the team’s content releases for 2018 and beyond remain unknown, but is eyeing to create something for Ardyn Izunia and Lunafreya Nox Fleuret.