Final Fantasy 13 was recently released on Steam, finally allowing PC gamers to get their hands on the first instalment of Square’s divisive JRPG trilogy.
The idea of getting a game on PC that was previously available only on last gen consoles is that it will be graphically superior. Sometimes gamers will even repurchase a game for PC to play it in a higher resolution and framerate. Games like Tomb Raider and most recently Sleeping Dogs have been released on PC titled as so-called “definitive editions”, which could be interpreted as saying that they run on PC with higher capacity hardware and will therefore outperform the console versions of the game. But with the latest port of Final Fantasy XIII, that doesn’t appear to be the case.
In fact, the exact opposite has happened. Final Fantasy XIII has been locked to 720p on the PC, and has very limited graphics options to select.
While I would like to go on a tangent and rage about this catastrophe, there is a workaround (already). One of the pros you get from gaming on the PC is direct access to the games files – and the ability to mod the game to your liking if able.
So it comes as no surprise that someone loaded up Final Fantasy XIII on their PC for the first time, expecting to play the game with definitive 4K resolutions, but was greeted with a locked 720p, and said: “No! I refuse to subjugate myself to this abuse! This shall be changed immediately!” Of course, in relality it probably wasn’t the dramatic monologue I’d like to imagine it to be, but someone surely had a relatively similar conversation in their head and went to work. That very modder was the one and only Durante – known for his past work unlocking higher resolutions in Dark Souls and Deadly Premonition on PC, when they suffered under similar circumstances.
With his mod, which can be found here, the resolution of Final Fantasy XIII on PC is extended to 1080p. Durante’s GeDoSaTo toolset has a pre-alpha custom plugin for Final Fantasy XIII, which plays the game in resolutions as high as 3840×2160.
Because it is in its early stages, you may encounter a few bugs. At some points in the game – namely cutscenes – you may find that the screen occasionally cuts off along the sides, and depth of field effects are still 720p. Durante has promisesd to update the plugin over time, but we’ve tested the mod and the bugs appear to be relatively minor. If you can endure them in exchange for playing the game in a higher resolution, go nuts.
Besides, the game’s only been out for a couple of days on PC, and the mod is free – how much more could you ask for?
That said, if you’re thinking of taking the plunge into Square Enix’s critically divisive game, you might want to read our review of the console versions of the game. “Square Enix should be applauded for having the bravery to try something new with a series which had become increasingly formulaic in terms of its structure”, Shaz wrote in his retrospective review back in August, “But they should also have had the bravery at some point to step back and admit to themselves that what they were coming up with was deeply flawed from the outset.”
Still, if you’re determined to play it, you might want to check our Durante’s mod.