Final Fantasy 16: That’s why the game lacks diversity
As the release of the highly anticipated Final Fantasy 16 draws ever closer, and a specific release date is set to be revealed even later this year, we’re getting more and more information about the entire game. Just recently, for example, IGN published a fairly detailed interview with producer Naoki Yoshida, in which the setting of the game is examined more closely. From the role of the mother crystals to the possible side quests, the interview offers a lot of information for all players who can’t wait for the release.
Naoki Yoshida upsets fans – characters in Final Fantasy 16 mostly white skinned
However, the interview is currently hotly debated in the community for a very specific reason. When asked if players can expect a diverse cast in Final Fantasy 16, Yoshida responded that the world of Final Fantasy 16 is set in a fairly isolated realm, inspired by medieval Europe, and therefore doesn’t involve a lot of representation.
“That’s a tough question, but not an unexpected one, as diversity in entertainment media has become a much-discussed topic lately. However, the answer I have may be disappointing for some, depending on individual expectations. Our design concept has evolved since always focused heavily on medieval Europe from the earliest stages of development, integrating historical, cultural, political and anthropological standards that were prevalent at the time.When we decided on a setting that best suited the story we wanted to tell – the story of a blight-stricken country – we felt it was necessary not to create something on a global scale, but to confine it to a single landmass – a landmass geographically and culturally isolated from the rest of the world in an age without airplanes, television or phones.”
Because of these limitations of the setting created by the Final Fantasy 16 team, the title “realistically would never be as diverse as, say, modern Earth.” This has caused a bit of an uproar among the community, who were already concerned about representation in Final Fantasy 16 based on the released trailers. For example, the page focused kotaku to the aspect of realistic Europe. Of course, even in the Middle Ages, there weren’t only people with white skin in Europe, which is why many fans were not particularly satisfied with this answer, which was already used by many games before Final Fantasy 16.
Yoshida went on to explain that while the game is grounded in reality, it is still a fantasy game, stressing that while the development team felt it was important to include “ethnic diversity” in Valisthea, however one “excessive involvement in this single corner of a much larger world could end up violating the narrative boundaries we originally set for ourselves.”
Yoshida couldn’t appease the fans with this either, so there are reports from sites like Kotaku, for example PC gamers and Rock Paper Shotgun, all of whom complained about this statement, which has meanwhile become quite old. Yoshida’s statement about the importance of “ethnic diversity” in Final Fantasy 16 is definitely interesting, so we can probably expect to see at least some diversity in the game. Whether it actually makes sense to limit this diversity as it will be the case in the finished game due to a “land mass that is geographically and culturally isolated from the rest of the world” must, as Yoshida already explained himself, simply be decided by everyone .
Until then, however, players have to be patient a little longer. The release date is supposed to be revealed later this year, but we can’t expect a real release until next year. If you want to bridge the time until then, you can get the full one Interviewed by IGN watch, or read why the title does without turn-based combat.