If you thought The Last of Us and Halo 4 looked good at this year’s E3 showing, you may want to check out what Square-Enix has been working on. During a separate event of their own, the company unveiled a real time demo of the Luminous Engine and hands down – it is probably the most impressive thing we’ve seen at E3 so far.
The demo is titled Agni’s Philosophy and has been based on the theme of Final Fantasy, while at the same time not being specifically linked to any upcoming Final Fantasy project. The footage shown could easily be identified as cutscene footage that the company are famous for, but according to them – Agni’s Philosophy is all real time.
We were not able to see the demo live ourselves, but to prove it was real time, Square-Enix apparently stopped the video during the event and replayed it to the audience tweaking some settings such as a change in hair color to prove that it was not pre-rendered content.
Given just how impressive this Luminous Engine is looking, we’re a little surprised that we didn’t see this in action during Sony or Microsoft’s E3 keynotes to increase its appeal a little more. There’s also no sign on when this will be available, but the engine has been designed as a next-gen project, so it could be an indication that all Final Fantasy games on future consoles will be using graphics in real time similar to what we have seen here with Agni’s Philosophy.
Now here’s something to get excited about that you may have forgotten. Square’s Tetsuya Nomura revealed in September last year that Final Fantasy Versus XIII will be using elements of this Luminous Engine to handle the game’s lighting effects. Obviously that may or may not include gameplay mechanics too, but considering that the engine is thought to be designed for next-gen only, it does pose an interesting thought on the idea of Final Fantasy Versus XIII becoming a next-gen game.
We certainly are no closer to knowing when the game will release and with next-gen consoles rumored to be out at the end of next year – we shouldn’t rule out a same scale release for Final Fantasy Versus XIII either as it obviously isn’t ready for a 2012 or early 2013 release. Imagine a scenario where the endless wait will all be worth it if Square Enix announces that Versus XIII is going to use the full capabilities of the Luminous Engine.
Just having lighting effects though is good enough for us, based on what we have seen here with this tech demo. It certainly seems to be exciting times again for the publisher with Tomb Raider also looking fantastic. Check out the demo below, crank it up to 1080p and let us know what you think of it.
Were you aware that Final Fantasy Versus XIII would be using the Luminous Engine for lighting effects?