Last updated Saturday, December 03, 2016 5:33 pm GMT+8

Wednesday November 30, 2016
10:30 AM GMT+8

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TOKYO, Nov 30 — A live-action launch trailer for Final Fantasy XV arrives as the slick-looking adventure releases to a wave of positive reviews, a welcome return for a game 10 years in development.

Chased by a lumbering colossus, four kids combine to turn the tables and take down their nemesis in the live-action launch trailer for Final Fantasy XV.

A Florence + The Machine cover of 1961 hit Stand by Me accompanies the vignette, recalling a 1980s classic film of the same name in which four boys go off looking for adventure of their own.

By contrast, the gameplay-derived “Ride Together” plunges us into an arcane world full of technology and strange beasts, before framing FFXV as a world-saving road trip via Eminem and Royce da 5’9” track Fast Lane.

Connections with the 1986 Rob Reiner film don’t have to stop with the Stand by Me cover, as Final Fantasy XV shares a theme of adventuring in unexplored lands, characters providing for themselves with whatever they can get in the way of food and accommodation.

In FFXV, however, the lead characters are less an unlikely bunch of youngsters and more an impossibly well turned-out cohort of boy band-tier young men.

Noctis (centre left) leads the cast of ‘Final Fantasy XV.’ — Handout via AFPNoctis (centre left) leads the cast of ‘Final Fantasy XV.’ — Handout via AFPTen years in the making, the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One title has emerged from what begun as Final Fantasy Versus XIII in 2006.

The game has been greeted with strong review scores — recognition of a far-reaching vision awash with smart ideas — even if its creation was somewhat Frankenstinian in nature.

Come launch day, aggregated review scores of 84 on Metacritic and 83 on GameRankings and OpenCritic suggest an endeavor that is a whole lot better than August’s spin-off CGI movie Kingsglaive, some of whose scenes have been repurposed within the game.

For Japanese publisher Square Enix it’s a last big release of 2016, a year whose high points have included impressive Minecraft challenger Dragon Quest Builders, eight months’ worth of Hitman episodes, and the cyberpunk future of Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. — AFP-Relaxnews

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