Many believed we'd receive both Japanese and North American release dates for Final Fantasy XIII at the Tokyo Game Show this month; Square-Enix is holding one of their patented behind-closed-doors events, and future attendees figured they'd receive this information then.
But it seems we know well ahead of time: this online ad for FFXIII shows a Japanese release date of December 17, 2009! All along, Square-Enix has promised the most anticipated RPG of the generation would launch this year in Japan and they never wavered; this date – if accurate – drives that point home. Obviously, US and European gamers are going to have to wait until the middle part of 2010 (estimated) to get this game, but now we're really hoping to get a US release date at TGS. Typically, we'd allow 8-10 months for the lengthy localization process that is required, but Square-Enix has said in the past that this process will be shorter for FFXIII; perhaps only 6-8 months. This means we could see FFXIII as early as June of next year, and let's not forget that GameStop currently holds a June 21, 2010 release date for this region. Everything seems to be falling into place and we know a lot of hardcore RPG aficionados might be looking to import this one. We'll also be looking for a playable demo for the US, too; something along the lines of the one that released with the Blu-Ray edition of "Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children" in Japan.
Obviously, we'll be one of the first to tell you when FFXIII receives a North American launch date from Square-Enix. But at least with the Japanese date, we can be a bit more accurate in our speculation.
Related Game(s): Final Fantasy XIII