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Theatrhythm Final Fantasy on Nintendo Switch Doesn’t Work Today, Feb. 29, Seemingly Because It’s a Leap Year

While Square Enix is busy launching
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today, February 29, another Final Fantasy game has stopped working entirely — seemingly because it’s a leap year.


Theatrhythm Final Fantasy is a rhythm Final Fantasy spin-off that released on Nintendo 3DS and iOS back in 2012. A sequel,
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, launched on Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4 last year, and it’s the Switch version in particular that’s currently unplayable, with players greeted by a black screen that won’t go away.

I restarted the game 6 times but it keeps happening
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— Puri 🐻‍❄️ (@puritikuma)
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“I wanted to boot Theatrhythm to do my dailies,”
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, “and the game is not booting up, because it appears the game connects to a Square Enix server for whatever reason even though I have the physical copy. And people ask why I play old games.”

IGN has verified this black screen is indeed present today, but there is a workaround, also verified by IGN. It’s as simple as changing the clock to another date, which in turn sees Theatrhythm Final Fantasy work perfectly.

So, what's going on here? According to @SuperDarkMimeIV, Final Bar Line Theatrhythm checks today's date to see if it's the user's birthday, and it's this process that's causing the game to hang because it doesn't know how to search for February 29.

Final Bar Line Theatrhythm checks today's date to see if anyone's birthday, which gives you a little reward. The problem is, Square-Enix didn't code the game to find anything for February 29th, so it just hangs.
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— Robin64 🌸 (@SuperDarkMimeIV)
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It’s an embarrassing gaffe for Square Enix, which is hoping for big numbers out of Final Fantasy 7 Rebirth following positive reviews. Unfortunately, the number 29 appears to have caused the company a problem. IGN has asked Square Enix for comment.

As you’d expect, the internet is having fun at Square Enix’s expense. Here’s a snippet:

Square Enix is so desperate for you to play Rebirth they shut down Theatrhythm for the day

— JD 🧙‍♀️ (@GWEND0VER)
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Holy shit Square Enix y2k’d Theatrhythm
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— Regulus (@Regulus_Tera)
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IGN’s
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returned a 9/10. “Theatrhythm Final Bar Line is full of charm and nostalgia, and its impressive 385-song tracklist makes it an enjoyable way to listen to and play along with the most memorable songs from the Final Fantasy series,” we said.


Wesley is the UK News Editor for IGN. Find him on Twitter at @wyp100. You can reach Wesley at [email protected] or confidentially at [email protected].

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