Final Fantasy XVI is the first video game in the main saga that has ever received an adult rating. The new approach the franchise took will be reflected in the game’s darker tone and the way violence will be handled in the plot. Producer Naoki Yoshida explained that the fact that the new release is targeted toward adult audiences allowed the creation of a story with no creative limitations.
In a recent interview for Game Informer, the producer talked about all the reasons why he and the Square Enix creation team decided to take this path for the sixteenth release of the game. It all had to do with full creative freedom for them to build the story.
You can’t have a war without certain imagery. Clive is in the trenches, he’s fighting for his life, he’s covered with dirt and blood. Once you start limiting that when you’re trying to create something that’s very real […], it takes the player out of the reality and makes it feel more like a game. That’s what we didn’t want to do. So rather than maintaining the Teen rating, which would have limited a lot of the things that we could do and [what we] show in cutscenes, the Mature rating allows us to tell the story that we wanted to in the way we want to tell it.
Final Fantasy XVI has it all to make the franchise the mainstream phenomenon it once was during PlayStation’s prime. According to the production team, the new tone and storyline are inspired by “Game of Thrones,” and the decision of taking some elements from the TV series seems to be positive for the plotline. The new rating and tone go all through the gameplay and is the change-up developers and producers were expecting.