FFXIV Players Rejoice, Soken Confirmed as Final Fantasy XVI Composer

Sony's latest State of Play ended with a new FFXVI trailer, and a PlayStation blog post gave more details that should make FFXIV fans happy.

When it was revealed that Creative Business Unit III (who we often refer to as the Final Fantasy XIV team) was leading development on Final Fantasy XVI, many dedicated FFXIV players leaned toward feeling hopeful about the franchise’s next mainline entry. For one, it’s exciting to see that team branch out and take on a high-profile single-player entry. And with a history of delivering high-tier expansions at a steady pace, FFXIV director and producer Naoki Yoshida being the lead producer on FFXVI is promising. And one, newly revealed detail makes things even more promising for us FFXIV sickos.

Sony’s summertime State of Play stream capped off with some words from Yoshi-P and a brand-new gameplay trailer for FFXVI. Then, a PlayStation Blog post gave more new information about the game. One of the new details is that FFXIV composer Masayoshi Soken is indeed the lead composer for FFXVI as well.

Since the premiere trailer in 2020, any FFXIV player with a sharp-enough ear could draw similarities between the music in that trailer and the more orchestral tunes from FFXIV‘s discography, and make an educated guess that Soken was behind it.

That said, if there’s one thing you can now safely bet on with FFXVI, it’s that it will have a banging soundtrack. You can hear some of that music in the new trailer below.

As sound director and lead composer for FFXIV, Soken has helped create music that is inseparable from the unforgettable stories told throughout FFXIV. With Endwalker being their latest body of work, Soken and his team brought the game’s emotional storytelling to new heights with a soundtrack that complemented FFXIV‘s narrative themes to near-perfection.

At the last FFXIV Fan Fest, which was in early 2021, Soken revealed he had been battling cancer throughout 2020 and continued to work on new music for the game. Listening to “To The Edge,” one of the final songs in the Shadowbringers soundtrack, was never the same after Soken told his story. He also mentioned his cancer was in remission, and he seems to be in good health since.

“Do you know…LAHEE?!” – FFXIV composer Masayoshi Soken

This latest FFXVI trailer, titled “Dominance,” shows off real-time gameplay and more story-focused cutscenes. Since its reveal, FFXVI had hinted Eikons (or summons, in broader franchise terms) are central to the plot. Familiar names such as Shiva, Phoenix, Ifrit, Garuda, and Titan took center stage again in this latest trailer to hammer the point that the fate of FFXVI‘s world hangs in the balance of these god-like beings. And the Dominants, people who can control and embody Eikons, are important players in the story.

With actual gameplay being shown, we got a look at the UI and some of the RPG elements the game will be using — and it’s definitely taking the series in a different direction. Ryota Suzuki is the combat designer for FFXVI, and you can easily draw similarities to his previous work in the Devil May Cry series. FFXVI has an unmistakable stylized character action-RPG gameplay foundation, which appears to deviate from the traditional party-based focus of the franchise.

The protagonist, Clive Rosfield, seems to be the lone playable character, and his mission is to get revenge on Ifrit (who pulled up on him years ago) and protect his younger brother Joshua (who is a Dominant who wields the power of Phoenix).

There’s a ton of political backstory and lore on the official FFXVI website, which will probably make more sense once we actually play the game. New characters were revealed, too — Hugo Kupka is a big ass dude who controls Titan and Benedikta Harman wields the power of Garuda — both Dominants who are core to the story.

FFXVI is set to launch for PlayStation 5 sometime in Summer 2023. But just because parts of the FFXIV team are working on it doesn’t mean the critically acclaimed MMO is slowing down. The next content update with FFXIV Patch 6.15 releases on June 7 and the main story continues in Patch 6.2 with tons of new content, which we expect to see launch sometime in August. Plans to give FFXIV a graphics overhaul with the next expansion and Patch 7.0 have already been revealed, too.