Square Enix has been working on trying to push mobile devices a lot in the last few years; that’s unsurprising. What is surprising however is their commitment to trying to bring the heavy hitting triple A titles to mobile. Final Fantasy XIII had just been launched for the iOS and Android over in Japan.
This would seem impossible naturally; but the technology wizards working in Square Enix had been devising a way to enable this for a while. The game is streamed into devices from a cloud service known as G-Cluster. This is where the bulk of the game’s data will exist. The only thing that needs to be downloaded app-wise would be a 20MB app that will contain a 30 minute demo for the game. Once that time runs out, the player can opt to pay a further 2000 yen or approximately $16 in order to play the full game. Which is roughly how much Square is setting their prices for full Final Fantasy games on the iOS store currently.
Now for the kicker; in order to utilize and play this optimally; you’d need to be able to download at speeds of above 3MB/s. That’s an insane speed that a lot of locations outside of Japan can’t hit. It also goes to show that it might be impossible to be able to play this outside of home. I know; living in Australia, this would be impossible to implement.
This unique idea is innovative for sure, and it’s an interesting concept, but it’s not the most viable way to run the game for places outside of Japan. But perhaps that’s the point. There’s no plans to release this sort of gaming outside of Japan.