Feature

Take A Walk Through Square Enix's Japan Office

by Tim Turi on Jun 17, 2011 at 04:25 PM

If you were to take a stroll down the streets of downtown Shinjuku, Japan, you'd be hard-pressed to identify which inconspicuous office tower was home to Final Fantasy. There are not gigantic bahamut statues or neon signs indicating that the uncontested king of JRPGs sits within the nondescript building. During a recent trip to Japan to check out Final Fantasy XIII-2 (Game Informer issue #219), Square Enix allowed me a quick peek around their office.

Embark on a photo tour featuring developers hard at work on FF XIII-2, quirky desk decorations, and some behind the scenes art. 

(left to right) producer Yoshinori Kitase, director Motomu Toriyama, art director Isamu Kamikokuryo, and battle director Yuusuke Matsui sign copes of Final Fantasy XIII to raise money for Japan disaster relief

Tons of cubicles are home to hard-working game makers

Adorable plushes are never far from sight

The terrible Tonberry and crafty Cactuar finally join forces

I stop by art director Kamikokuryo's desk to see what he's working on

He was eager show off his beautiful work

Two keyboards, a mouse, and a drawing tablet - the tools of modern art

Loving the juxtaposing of this ancient-looking art and Ultraman

Komikokuryo's work depicting FF XII's gorgeous Arcadia

An early draft of what would become a key piece of FF XIII-2 art

Artist Toshitaka Matsuda showing off Noel's artwork

The artists' desks were frequently decorated with creative scenery

You'd be hard-pressed to find a desk in the office that didn't have a colorful stack of manga

From this angle it sort of looks like Beast is transforming into a giant robot and preparing to attack Belle

Your guess is as good as mine

Legendary Final Fantasy producer Yoshinori Kitase in his element

A still-packaged plush patiently waits in its bag

More manga

Director Motomu Toriyama prepares to show us a sneak peek at FF XIII-2's introduction stage

Desperate for a token of my appreciation, I panic and re-gift a package of chocolates I found on Toriyama's desk

Releasing for multiple consoles means multiple development kits

The last photo snapped on the tour, a piece of art autographed by Leona Lewis, singer of Final Fantasy XIII's "My Hands"

Thanks for joining us on a trip through Square Enix's offices. If you want to learn more about the game be sure to check out the issue of Game Informer with the Darksiders II cover.

I leave you with a sneak peek at my trip to the Square Enix store in Japan, home to amazing toys, collectibles, and other amazing goods.