From our friends at Kotaku:
Kotaku has heard from several sources that the game, as originally intended, is done for.
One source tells Kotaku that Final Fantasy Versus XIII was officially cancelled within the last few weeks. The decision impacted morale at Square Enix and staff were reportedly saddened by the move.
Square Enix, this source added, has also decided to let Final Fantasy Versus XIII die quietly on the vine and fade away, instead of officially announcing its cancellation.
Now before we let our knees jerk, as they always do, we do have to remember that this is, as of now, merely a rumor from unidentified sources. Square-Enix has yet to provide a comment, though with the suspicion of a quiet cancellation, it makes sense why they wouldn't. But as with any rumor, let's take it with a grain of salt. For now.
The last Final Fantasy Versus XIII was heard from was in January 2011, when the first gameplay trailer for the game was released. It has regularly been absent from major gaming conventions like the Tokyo Game Show, E3, and even from some of Square's own private events. Originally announced in 2006 alongside Final Fantasy XIII and Final Fantasy Type 0 (then known as Agito XIII) the game has had a notoriously long dev-cycle and little to show for it, with many theorizing that it would ultimately become vaporware.
The rumors of cancellation do come with some smidgen of hope, though:
Another source tells Kotaku that, a few months back, Final Fantasy Versus XIII's development and resources had actually been folded into another game, which is to be the next numeric Final Fantasy title, Final Fantasy XV.
So not all is lost.
From a business stand point it would be foolish for Square Enix to have invested so much money, their highest profile dev team led by their star child Tetsuya Nomura, and the better part of a decade working on a project to then just drop it altogether. Re-purposing however much of the game there is (assets, code, game mechanics, staff) to another project is the most logical thing they could do given the circumstances.
Part of me wonders if Square Enix is intentionally rebranding this title as Final Fantasy XV in hopes of putting as much distance between it and the incredibly divisive Final Fantasy XIII.
But again, this is all merely rumor and speculation. Until we get any kind of official statement from Square Enix the game is, for all intents and purposes, still being made. However given how little of the game has been shown in the past six yars, and it's absence from this year's E3, if this bad boy doesn't show up at the Tokyo Game Show or Square's own event in late August...I'd say we can call this chocobo cooked.
One good thing to come out of all of this, though: If the game really has been cancelled, maybe Kingdom Hearts 3 can finally get rolling.
Now back to your regularly scheduled knee-jerk reactions. Here's mine: