Lightning Returns is a different beast from the previous two FF13 games - with the emphasis maybe on beast. Speaking with Famitsu (as translated by Kotaku), game producer Yoshinori Kitase said, "If I were to describe the gameplay, I'd say that there are some elements with the severity of [something like] Dark Souls."
Kitase and director Motomu Toriyama told Famitsu Lightning Returns places emphasis on time and inventory management. Players only have a certain number of item slots, and start with only seven in-game days to complete the game, although this can be increased to thirteen via successfully completed missions. So, bits as tough as Dark Souls, with a touch of Majora's Mask and Resident Evil, then - and maybe some Final Fantasy too.
"Thinking economically is very important in this game!" noted Toriyama, perhaps while slowly tapping his fingers together and cackling maniacally.
Lightning Returns is due in North America on February 11, 2014, which is still a while away. In the meantime, you can check out our E3 hands-on where we took in how the game shifts up the combat's paradigms and Stagger systems for its returning party of one.