7th March 2010 - On Wednesday, March 3rd, set with in backdrop of beautiful Darling Harbour in Sydney, Australia, Final Fantasy fans anxiously lined up to get their first glance of the franchises latest instalment Final Fantasy XIII. The lobby of the IMAX Theatres was transformed into a gaming paradise fit with XBOX controllers, free drinks and Domino's pizza.
After mobiles and cameras were confiscated fans moved into one of the theatres were they were shown the UK Final Fantasy trailer, the opening cut scene and some of the new gameplay features. This trailer can be seen at many JB HI-FI’s around the country; however, seeing it on an IMAX screen was unbelievable. The picture quality was so sharp and the sound seemed to just bounce off the vast walls. Even though the fast paced action of bright colours and anima faces put a huge strain on the eyes.
Final Fantasy XIII follows the lives of the six playable characters Oerba Yun Fang, Oerba Dia Vanille, Lightning, Hope Estheim, Snow Villiers and Sazh Katzroy. They are seen as enemies of the state, l'Cie, due to crystals which are buries deep inside of them. These crystals give them the power to summon creatures which fight along side them and cause identifiable markings on their bodies.
An interesting new gameplay feature is the introduction of roles and paradigms. Much like the Job system of the previous games the Role system allows you to control the abilities that are available to characters during battle. Each character can only take on one role at a time and combining three Roles in a given party is called a Paradigm. Swiftly changing which Paradigm correctly can fill the ATB gauge which can is advantageous during battle.
Once the presentation was over the hands on portion of the night began. Eger fans crowded around the Xbox’s and watched as their peers played awaiting their turn.
At the end of the night a raffle was drawn. Third prize was a standard copy of Final Fantasy XIII. Second was a deluxe edition with Final Fantasy XIII soundtrack, hardback character artwork and exclusive art prints. And first was an exclusive Final Fantasy XIII XBOX set including two wireless XBOX controllers, an XBOX with 250GB hard drive and a Final Fantasy game. Consolation prizes in the form of calendars were given out to the winners of an impromptu question round and the person who had travelled the furthest to the event. The winners were ecstatic.
Overall the energy of the night died around the middle but picked back up towards the end and everyone seemed to leave satisfied.
Article By Sussan Nunez