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Final Fantasy 16 looks deliciously political and action-packed in new trailer

FF16’s politically charged war looks like some sort of ‘game’ of thrones

Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Square Enix dropped a new Final Fantasy 16 trailer Thursday, just because. But don’t let this seemingly random teaser for the next mainline Final Fantasy role-playing game undersell what is a spectacular and captivating trailer; it’s chock full of medieval fantasy, politically roiling aggression, and — in the Final Fantasy tradition — awesome-looking summons, like mainstays Ifrit, Garuda, and other giant beasts, known as Eikons in Final Fantasy 16.

Final Fantasy 16’s new trailer, titled “Ambition,” dives into the backstory of its realm of Valisthea, and the various kingdoms and factions vying for power. Valisthea is home to a people known as Dominants, men and women with the power to call forth Eikons. That backdrop supports the story of Clive Rosfield, a warrior known as the First Shield of Rosaria, and his younger brother Joshua, a Dominant who wields the power of the Phoenix. According to Square Enix, the events of FF16 set Clive on “a dark and dangerous road to revenge.”

Hiroshi Takai, director of Final Fantasy 16, said in a news release that the developer has “turned its full attention to debugging and final adjustments,” and publisher Square Enix remains committed to the game’s summer 2023 release window.

Final Fantasy 16 is in development for PlayStation 5, with a Windows PC version of the game previously confirmed.