First Final Fantasy Ultimania English Release

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Just announced today- Final Fantasy Ultimania Archive I-VI will be released in english by Dark Horse in 2018! 

The book is part of a 3 volume trilogy that was released a few years back to celebrate the franchise and is also part of the larger Ultimania library. 

For those who don't know, Final Fantasy Ultimania books are like thick (some phone-book thick) guides that feature everything there is to know about a single Final Fantasy entry in the series or sometimes other Square Enix series. 
The books are moderately rare, especially the older ones which went out of proof for some time when Studio Bentstuff and Square Enix stopped publishing. 

Aside from being a big guide and including a full strategy-guide, Ultimania books include a multitude of other information about the games they feature. 
You may find anything from background canon lore not mentioned in the main games, side-stories written by Final Fantasy staff, sheet music for memorable tracks, art, what-if's and cancelled plans that didn't make it into the games, interviews- everything. 

Square Enix has never published a single Ulimania book outside of Japan, and most Final Fantasy fans in the west are completely unaware of their existence. 

I've collected some- usually to get them outside of Japan you have to order them online or be lucky enough to encounter them at conventions. This particular one is spotted at artbook vendors from time to time at conventions that I've seen.

I've been following the Ultimania books since I became internet-savvy in the early 2000's and thanks to some of their deep-lore I have clashed with many a Final Fantasy fan who refuses to believe some of the background I've learned from the books. That's how unknown they tend to be in the west! 

While this is an incredible moment in history to see one of Square Enix's Japan exclusive book series, it should be mentioned that this particular book more of an 'artbook' class, larger, hardcover book unlike it's usual Ultimania relatives which are small super thick paperback books with game guides and the rest I mentioned above. 
Expect mostly art and paragraphs giving information about the games as a sort of memorial compilation rather than a book of secrets and info.

Still its quite exciting to look forward to picking up this amazing release to celebrate the franchise and the 30th anniversary (technically 31st by the time this book comes out). I'd also put a good bet on the fact that this will be one of several books since this particular one is the first of three very specific Ultimania artbooks, which means we'll most likely see the one for VII-IX, and the X-XIV book in the coming year/s. 

But there's one more thing I'm hoping for- I'd love, love, LOVE to see this as the start of the entire Ultimania book series releasing in english! 
Wouldn't that be something? 
I'm very excited about this news. Regardless, even if this is the only Ultimania to ever release in english, I'll be happy to pick it up and support! 
It also adds even more Final Fantasy to the shelves of book stores far and wide! History in the making folks! 

Check out Square Enix's Ultimania series! I have to say Dark Horse and Udon Entertainment have been very excellent at finding great Japanese artbooks to bring over and localize for the west. Its really nice to see! 


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About Hikaru Kazushime

Hikaru Kazushime is an American entrepreneur from the USA who lives in California and is the creator of Run Around:Network, a brand that brings Visual Culture to life. Kazu (called for short) is an active personality in the anime and gaming industries and sub-culture scenes. Kazu resides in his hometown of Sacramento, California where he manages RA:N from his home office. Learn more about Kazu by clicking the "About Hikaru Kazushime" link at the top under the "About" tab.

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