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Bromance makes Final Fantasy XV more accessible?

2 min read

FF XV fist bump

Final Fantasy XV has some really cool elements and I’m excited to explore them beyond what we’ve seen in the demo. However, I’m not totally convinced on the cast of characters – they just didn’t grab me in Episode Duscae. While it could be down to some bland character designs, or the demo not showing off the depth of personalities, it might also be a gender gap. At least this is one way I can get a deeper understanding of bromance.

Speaking to Gamespot, game director Hajime Tabata explained that the all male party is meant to make the game feel more accessible.

Speaking honestly, an all-male party feels almost more approachable for players. Even the presence of one female in the group will change their behaviour, so that they’ll act differently. So to give the most natural feeling, to make them feel sincere and honest, having them all the same gender made sense in that way.
The world might be ready to see the curtain lifted on what boys do when girls aren’t around, when they come out of the tent all prim and proper. That’s kind of the idea behind itโ€ฆ we think, male or female player, that everyone will feel a certain connection and bond with the four characters.

Final Fantasy has traditionally had a ton of strong female characters, so I’m not about to write off the whole franchise because this installment chooses to focus on male trust, friendship and camaraderie. Intimacy between men is still a real and important thing – no, not in a sexualized context, but the fact that men can be close and form a brotherhood. It’s something that’s been integral to society since the dawn of, um, man. I just hope that these characters are expanded upon and aren’t like the Hobbit movies with a bunch of undifferentiated dwarves.

Bromance may be a central theme in Final Fantasy XV, but it is rather unfortunate for them that their timing is so close to a big push for female representation in games. Still, it is a Japanese RPG and will get away with sexualized depictions of women – hey, at least she’s a top notch mechanic, right? And if you start to forget about empowered women in Final Fantasy games, just go back and play… any of them. I’m excited to see how this develops and hope that the characters expand outside of the demo – while it has a massive scope for a demo, it still won’t touch the scale of the final game. At least, that’s what I’m hoping.

Last Updated: March 27, 2015


  1. Valshen

    March 27, 2015 at 11:06

    It might also be that after 13 they felt that three games with women at the helm had gotten them enough flak.


    • Hammersteyn

      March 27, 2015 at 11:09

      Anita used trope on FF15. It’s not very effective


    • Admiral Chief

      March 27, 2015 at 11:29



  2. Hammersteyn

    March 27, 2015 at 11:07

    Best bromance in a game was Army of Two


  3. Ranting Raptor

    March 27, 2015 at 11:32

    Please I hope no one tries to destroy this game simply because it doesn’t have a main female lead. I’m really tired of all of that.

    I completely agree that games need to be more inclusive. But something, that I feel, trumps all of that is what the story is trying to achieve.

    This story is about them creating a brotherly bond between eachother… Awesome. It works for what they wanted to aim for so just leave it be. Please


    • Admiral Chief

      March 27, 2015 at 11:44




    • Eric

      March 27, 2015 at 11:53

      FFX-2 had an all female party…


      • Ranting Raptor

        March 27, 2015 at 11:57

        And that works for what they were trying to do. I honestly do believe that character gender distribution in a game should be solely based on the story and what the story requires.

        But every time I say that I get called a chauvinistic pig.


        • Dutch Matrix

          March 27, 2015 at 11:59

          You chauvinistic raptor! Is that better?
          Though I agree with you…


          • Ranting Raptor

            March 27, 2015 at 11:59

            Lol. Finally! Someone calls me a Raptor instead of a pig! Thought this day would never come ๐Ÿ™‚

          • Admiral Chief

            March 27, 2015 at 12:03


  4. Goal9

    March 27, 2015 at 11:47

    Im pretty sure the people who keep making the “gay boyband” comments online are really insecure with their sexuality.


  5. hairyknees

    March 27, 2015 at 11:55

    Yeah I must say, Square really haven’t skimped on strong female characters in their FF games. Heck, I just finished Final Fantasy X-2, and that’s an all female lead ๐Ÿ˜› SISTERHOOD WOOOH!


  6. Mossel

    March 27, 2015 at 12:04

    Is that a mullet?


  7. Dutch Matrix

    March 27, 2015 at 12:16

    I just cannot take the cast of this game seriously. And no, I do not need every male protagonist in a game to be the spitting image of Arnie.
    It does look like they wanted to copy a boyband here. They have the guy with the tattoos and the beard. So he is the “tough guy” of the group (even if I am stil not convinced he can fight his way out of a paper bag). Then there is the heart throb. And I am sure as hell convinced one will be the cool kid from the Ghetto, even if he is as lilly white as my arse.
    And you know, why are they so damn clean cut and well dressed? Are they off to Paris Fashion week or what?


    • Mossel

      March 27, 2015 at 12:20

      They are metro men, man. Nothing wrong with some manscaping! xD


      • Dutch Matrix

        March 27, 2015 at 12:22

        “Hmmm. I have a choice: Either pay 5000 credits on the Super Duper Slay All Sword, or 20 000 credits on Super Duper Stay All Hair Gel. HAIR GEL IT IS!!!!!!”


    • Goal9

      March 27, 2015 at 12:21

      They come from a royal court that’s based on the Japanese mafia who worship a death goddess; the main character being the prince and the others his cohorts. Their clothes were designed by a real Japanese fashion house to reflect the current modern stylings at the time in Japan.
      Narrative wise they had to make a run for it after their kingdom got invaded so they didn’t have time to change into their khakis and crocs.


      • Gerhard Davids

        March 27, 2015 at 12:38

        I think with all the american style RPG’s people start to forget what the core sense of JRPG’s are. Actually knowing what it is about, is everything. You are not the focus of the story , you are driving the characters through their destiny.

        It’s important to understand them, their circumstances and their narrative. Without it you get “Why doesn’t this set of characters conform to what I expect.”


  8. Harley Weir

    March 27, 2015 at 12:49

    I liked Final Fantasy X, As much as I wouldn’t mind the Emo style of FFXV I would prefer the main cast to also include a chick or too.


  9. Byron Reeve

    March 27, 2015 at 12:50

    I think they can make the odd all male cast game once in a while so long as they write it honestly and with a certain “boyish adventure” theme in mind. I’ve played and loved every single FF up until XIII (I will not go into the fall of Square in detail in this post) and I think that if they can have an all girl cast in FFX-2 (even as a sequel and not a stand alone FF), then I do believe that they can at least attempt this with all male cast. That doesn’t worry me about FF XV, what worries me is a flashy world with a dull combat system and forgettable characters. Vaan anyone? Too soon,Shinra Reeve… :/ FML. From the view of an old Square Soft fanboy, XIII was like a guy somehow giving birth through his asshole: painful, messy and full of regret. From this Square Soft fan’s point of view, this is the final do-or-die product produced by the franchise at least for me. I’m not making the same mistake with XIII, I’ll wait for reviews and hold off on that huge CE pre-order. If cooking in XV is the same “winning merit” as XIII’s “DON’T WORRY GAIS, FFXIII REALLY OPENS UP AFTER 12 HOURS” , then I am out for good. I’ll get hold of Type0 play with tears streaming down mine face and bury my most beloved gaming series for good.


    • Byron Reeve

      March 27, 2015 at 12:58

      An interesting further comment on the all guy/girl party thing is that I found X-2 to have one of the best versions of that type of combat system around. The sphere grid never looked better, the world was really grand and even more vibrant the second time around. I personally just cringed a bit with the all ladies theme, the dresses and the stage performances. Might be that I need to tone the fuck down on the macho juice in the mornings or something…but that did get me thinking that if I did not enjoy the girly theme of X-2 as a guy, then perhaps some ladies will not enjoy Team Testosterone in XV for similar reasons from their standpoint. I really hope the game doesn’t fail due to a polarised appreciation of the game based on the sexes.


  10. David Bill

    March 27, 2015 at 14:32

    Well I mean, what tabata said about having female characters in the group will change the guys behavior seems entirely logical to me. I have a group of 5 buddies, really close friends and we do alot of stuff together. But when there is a female friends tagging along, our behaviors do alter a little and we tend to hold back on our action and conversations, I am pretty sure some of u can relate too. It seems like tabata really wanna emphasize the bond between a group of guys and how they’d open up to each other without females around, which is, in my eyes, completely logical and understandable.


  11. Matthew

    March 27, 2015 at 16:28

    If that’s how they want to tell the story, then whats the big deal? This argument literally makes no sense to me. It’s no different than a movie director, or a novel writer, focusing on male characters as their main protagonists. They can portray it however the hell they want. That’s like me going and watching the movie “Sucker Punch” where the main characters are all female, and then getting angry about it. No, the story was intended to be written that way, so if I’m not interested in the story, then don’t go watch the damn movie.

    Whether or not Square Enix is narrowing down too much on a specific market… or the whole “Cidney” topic..is a different conversation.


  12. JaxAxe

    March 27, 2015 at 22:58

    What is wrong with an all male cast? If it were an all female cast this game would already be praised for showing strong women. FFX-2 has shown that an all female cast of characters can work and work well; I think it is time to see how well an all male cast will work. I am a supporter of the feminist movement, but bashing on anything that doesn’t have a woman front and center is absolutely ridiculous. Final Fantasy has always shown strong and interesting women; I doubt that XV is looking to forever destroy that trend.


  13. Keithisonfire

    March 28, 2015 at 06:06

    I feel Cidney is wearing too much clothing. Why is she even wearing clothing? Here’s to hoping we get some hot coffee fantasy scenes.


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