Behind closed doors at E3, the largest videogame conference and tradeshow in the world, currently going on in Los Angeles, Square Enix, makers of the popular Final Fantasy series, debuted a stunning new game engine. The engine, dubbed Luminous Studio, was showcased in the form of a real-time short film inspired by Final Fantasy. The four minute film is a marvel of tech, art and sound design.

Keep in mind that what you’re seeing is being rendered in real-time, meaning that, if Square Enix’s projections for hardware specs are correct (and, to be fair, they’re probably optimistic), this is the potential level of quality that we could see in gameplay sections of videogames developed using Luminous Studio. It’s a little astounding. I remember, watching Toy Story, that I marvelled at the time when videogame graphics would surpass Pixar’s efforts. Watching this, I think it’s fair to say that real-time graphics have long ago left those films in the dust, even if they still can’t compete with Pixar’s latest films.

  • Seth June 6, 2012 at 9:43 pm

    There’s no question it’s visually impressive. I’m really skeptical, though, of Square Enix’s ability to match brilliant graphics with powerful storytelling. It’s been a while since I’ve played any of their RPGs, so maybe the writing quality is on the upswing again, but with the PS1 and early PS2 games it seemed the storytelling got weaker as the graphics got stronger. The last Square storyline I really enjoyed was Final Fantasy VII, and even that wasn’t without its problems. I suppose I should withhold judgement though.

  • Daniel Abraham June 7, 2012 at 2:52 pm

    I haven’t finished Deus Ex, but I’ve enjoyed what I’ve played so far. Just to speak in Square Enix’s defense. Of course one good game doesn’t imply much about the next one. See: Dragon Age & Dragon Age II.