Game developer Jonathan Jacques-Belletête commented that he had developed Final Fantasy XV (FF15) when he was once enrolled in EIDOS-Montréal. Although the details are unknown, it seems that there was a time when the Canadian studio was trying to create FF15. Truechievements report.
The development of “FF15” is said to have passed twists and turns. Originally developed as “Final Fantasy Versus XIII“, the title was changed to “FF15” in 2013. It was released in November 2016 after the change of the director. It is expected that there were various attempts during the development period, but Square Enix seems to have been considering to leave the production of Canada-based EIDOS-Montréal.
Jonathanjacques-belletête, who had been in EIDOS-Montréal for about 12 years until 2019, said in an interview with TrueChieVements that he was trying to create FF15. He was involved in Deus Ex: Human Revolution as an art director, and was involved in Deus Ex: MANKIND DIVIDED as an executive art director. He must have been the center staff of the company. It is said that the development team, including him, once started the development of FF15. However, the development of “FF15” was returned to Japan. Jonathan recalls that their FF15 was very cool, and the decision to return to Japan was a big mistake.
This is not the first time that EIDOS-Montréal was involved in FF15. In 2018, Youtuber and journalist SUPER BUNNYHOP reported on the source of anonymous testimony from studio employees in 2018. In the latter half of 2011, the upper layer of EIDOS-MONTREAL started a new work called Project W from Yoichi Wada, the president of the time, saying that he would not make a new FF. It is said that it was created as a SCI-Fi space opera set in the universe, which is conscious of Western reception. The team said that the work was presented at Square Enix in Japan, but was not recognized as “FF”. SUPER BUNNYHOP reported that the production was canceled due to the continuation of the development as the original title, but the resignation of President Wada was suspended.
Jonathan’s comment and Super Bunnyhop’s report are inconsistent. It is unknown how serious Square Enix was, but it may have been trying to make FF in a Canadian studio. In developing games, it is common for various studios to make prototypes. However, it is interesting that Canadian studios were challenging the development of FF15.
After many twists and turns, “FF15” was developed and released in Japan. Despite the praise and nor, sales exceeded 10 million in five and a half years since its release. Many blessings have been received, making it a strongly loved work. EIDOS-MONTREAL has also decided to sell it from Square Enix to EMBRACER GROUP the other day as one of the EIDOS groups. The transfer will be made from July to September 2022. You can get a glimpse of the difficulty of game development and the gloomy of the environment surrounding it.