Here's why the Final Fantasy IV Pixel Remaster removed the Developer's Room
The Final Fantasy IV Pixel Remaster is a strong version of the classic SNES RPG - but it's not exactly the definitive version. It has a number of omissions from later versions of FF4, and one notable piece of content removed from the original version of the game - the 'Developer's Office', a fan favourite Easter Egg.
In the original FF4, the Developer's Office was a secret area hidden off to the side in of the pub that's found in the Dwarven Castle. Inside, the development team of FF4 are represented by in-game sprites, and each has something unique to say about the development of the game. The room breaks the fourth wall, and is a wink to players. It was even recreated, but with different messages, in the 3D remake of Final Fantasy IV - but it's absent from the Pixel Remaster version.
Ever since it was revealed to be absent, fans have wondered - what gives? Why remove an iconic easter egg? Well, Square Enix's Takashi Tokita has an answer, revealed in a new Famitsu interview covering the FF4 Pixel Remaster. Here's our translation of what Tokita said:
I've been told by the fans "Hey Tokita, why did you omit the Development Room!?" But I wasn't actually involved there. I would rather have it retained myself (laughs). But as a matter of circumstance, it needed a confirmation from all dev staff members of the time. I reckon they were involved on whether to prepare a Development Room in the remake version or not. And in the current era, there is also somebody whose speech has a compliance problem... Ah, that's me though (strained laugh).
While Tokita wasn't directly involved with the FF4 Pixel Remaster, he's credited in the new version of the game as a Supervisor, somebody consulted by the game's team to ensure it was accurate and fair to the original version of the game. His involvement in the original game was huge, however - he was the Lead Game Designer and Scenario Writer, and also supervised the 3D version of FF4. So as sources go, he's about as good as they come.
So, there you have it - the development room was omitted because it would've required permission, and because some of the staff's original comments - including references to being overworked, not getting vacation time, and the gender imbalance on the FF4 team - might not be appropriate today. If you want to experience the development room, you'll have to boot up the earlier versions of FF4 instead.
Elsewhere in Famitsu's interview, Tokita also commented on his desire to remake or remaster FF4's sequel, The After Years. If you plan to play the Pixel Remaster to prepare for that day, be sure to follow our comprehensive FF4 walkthrough & guide.