Is Kentucky Fried Chocobo in our fast food future?

Final Fantasy is one of the most food-focused RPG franchises. Not only do mouthwatering digital delectables regularly appear in the series’ video games, real-world Japan has more than one Final Fantasy-themed restaurant.

Even still, Final Fantasy’s newest cuisine crossover announcement is sort of startling, since it involves a fried chicken chain and the teaser image features a silhouette of a Chocobo, Final Fantasy’s adorable avian mascot.

“Coming soon!” is all the tweet from KFC Japan says aside from the presumed date of the collaboration, October 4. While it’s obvious this is a Final Fantasy tie-up, the lack of details had more than a few commenters speculating about whether or not KFC is going to be serving Kentucky Fried Chocobo.

“They’re gonna fry up a Chocobo?”
“Chocobo, run for it!”
“Are we going to be eating Chocobo meat?”
“Wait, are Chocobos edible?”
“Do Chocobos raised on Gysahl Greens have meat that extra tender and juicy?”
“I could never bring myself to eat a Chocobo.”

Then a follow-up tweet added even more intrigue by implying that part of the crossover is going to involve KFC entering the world of Final Fantasy. In the video below, we hear an unmistakable snippet of the Final Fantasy XIV soundtrack, as well as a vista from the game’s overworld. There’s a lone adventurer standing on a hill, the white of his coat and hair in dramatic contrast to the blue of the sky and sea.

“Colonel Sanders, gearing up for a new adventure in an alternate world?!” says the tweet, and while your first guess might be that he’s simply arrived in Final Fantasy XIV to sell chicken, before the video ends he shows off some impressive magical abilities, including a polearm or mystical staff in the image of a fierce bird.

▼ It reminds us of the jet-black chicken we bought in Tokyo’s Ameyoko neighborhood.

As an online multiplayer RPG, Final Fantasy XIV almost always has some sort of seasonal event going on, with a few special treasures and cosmetic items as rewards for those who complete them, so some sort of optional KFC-themed mini questline seems like the most likely reason for the Colonel to be showing up in the fantasy realm.

That still leaves the question of whether or not fried Chocobo will be showing up on the KFC menu, though. None of the Final Fantasy games explicitly establish Chocobos as something humans eat. Yes, Final Fantasy XIV does have an optional quest where you explicitly butcher a Chocobo for its meat and cook it, but it’s a dragon that does the eating. Final Fantasy XV has an item that player can eat that’s called a “Chocobo Club Sandwich,” but it’s sold at an establishment that raises and cares for Chocobos for riding, so the name is likely the “Chocobo” part of the sandwich name is there for branding purposes, not because it actually contains Chocobo meat. Infamously, there was a for-humans-to-eat Chocobo Burger served by a food truck at the 2015 Paris Game Show, but as a one-time even not overseen directly by Square Enix’s main office, we can probably consider that a non-canon sandwich.

It’s also worth pointing out that multiple Final Fantasy fried chicken varieties have already been created in Japan without being Chocobo-flavored, instead drawing inspiration from the games’ Light and Dark Crystals, Kupo Nuts, and Limit Break gameplay mechanic. There’s also the fact that KFC’s teaser image specifically uses the super-deformed Chocobo proportions, which is usually reserved for Final Fantasy’s lighter and cuter games and events, so odds are they wouldn’t that character to say “Come eat our Chocobo meat!”, so it looks like we’re going to have to wait a little longer to find out what kind of Final Fantasy food we might encounter at KFC.

Source: Twitter/@KFC_jp
Featured image: Twitter/@KFC_jp
Top image: Twitter/@KFC_jp
Insert images: Twitter/@KFC_jp
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Follow Casey on Twitter, where he now has the Chocobo theme stuck in his head.