Over the summer, our writer Lady Rukiara looked ahead to what the future would bring in terms of role-playing games on the next generation consoles (the PS4 and Xbox One). In addition to Diablo III and the Elder Scrolls: Online making their way to the systems, we noted that there will be several Final Fantasy installments available in the coming months. There’s a new MMORPG coming in the series, Final Fantasy XIV Online: A Realm Reborn, along with a more standard entry in Final Fantasy XV. Along with those, there is also one coming to the PS3 and Xbox 360, Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, that we’ve chosen to highlight today.

Lightning_Returns_Final_Fantasy_XIII_Cover_ArtFor those unfamiliar with the game, the backstory is directly related to prior games in the Final Fantasy XIII series. It concludes the narrative of the original and is a direct sequel to

Final Fantasy XIII-2, which was released in early 2012. Lightning Returns takes place 500 years in the future, when there are only 13 days left in existence. As you can imagine, this realization causes a great disturbance in the universe. And Lightning, aka the game’s protagonist, is caught in the middle of it as she’s tasked with causing the world’s rebirth.

Lightning Returns is also a more action-oriented RPG, which means it blends the tried-and-true elements of the FF franchise with action-adventure/platform games. It allows for more open-ended gameplay, though in the case of Lightning Returns some were worried that it might not be the longest experience given the apocalyptic scenario. But to make sure that prospective players will know that they will be satisfied, gameplay director Yuji Abe spoke out to address these concerns. He told IGN that, yes, a day’s time in the game will pass by in real life in about two to three hours.

“Having said that, opening menus, customizing your characters, talking to some people or just listening to certain things will cause time to stop. So it isn’t quite as short as you’d think,” Abe said to IGN. He added that it took him about 50 hours to get through the full experience. “I think this is one that’ll take a good chunk of time, and people will be able to enjoy it for a good long while,” he concluded.

One element of the Final Fantasy series that seems to pop up only here and there is gambling. It’ll be interesting to see if it makes an appearance in Lightning Returns, especially given the doomsday narrative that’s so prevalent. If not, there’s always hope for the other aforementioned FF games that are being released relatively soon. And even if those don’t have it as part of the experience, you can always get your online gambling fix at Betfair Arcade. They offer a ton of options, especially in the slots category when it comes to different themes and skins. Everything from Batman to Monopoly has its own game, and you could always set it up so playing there is like a break from your FF session. Not only that, but you could set up your own system so that your time at Betfair could reflect your money amount in Lightning Returns.

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is scheduled to be released on February 14, 2014 for the Xbox 360 and PS3.