Yoshinori Kitase, director of Final Fantasy VII and Chrono Trigger, and fellow colleague Tetsuya Nomura, character designer for FFVII, are rumoured to be bitter rivals. Word has it that since the two are unable to work together, each of them are making separate FFXIII games with Kitase producing Final Fantasy XIII and Nomura directing Final Fantasy Versus XIII. Not so! says Kitase. He tells LEVEL magazine:
Haha, no... hmm, how am I going to explain this? Let me begin by pointing out that Nomura is designing characters both for FFXIII and FFvXIII and that it's absolutely not a matter of us not being able to work together. But ok, there are differences between us, what we want to accomplish and how we create games. It's not a hostile rivalry, but we don't share the exact same goal. But wouldn't it be boring if that was the case? My view of it is that we're two creative minds who work together sometimes and then move on on different paths, but always meet up again.
When we started to plan for FFXIII, I told Nomura that there were certain ideals that we had to attain. There's a standard we follow when we develop a new mainline FF. Back then, the plan was to develop the game for the PS2 and we decided that Nomura would make FFvXIII for the PS3. With that, he could do something different; that game wouldn't have to follow the traditional FF format. And I've always encouraged him to experiment and try out completely new ideas. He's allowed to take risks; it's almost an end in itself with that project.
In fact, both recently had sushi together a few weeks back, where they talking about "how RPGs could evolve and how the command-based system is in need of renewal, all while being an important part of the genre's popularity." Bet that was truly an interesting conversation. Too bad only some sushi chiefs and nearby customers were able to overhear it. That's a shame.
New Kitase Interview [NeoGAF]