Final Fantasy XV
- Developers: Square Enix Holdings, XPEC Entertainment, HexaDrive, Streamline Studios, Umbra
- Publisher: Square Enix
- Genre: RPG, Action Adventure
- Platforms: PlayStation 4 (Reviewed), Xbox One
- Release Date: 29th November 2016
- Microtransactions: No
As a Final Fantasy fan, a big Final fantasy fan may I add, i feel that I am the right person to do this review. I am one of those fans who gets annoyed at the constant rubbish that has been churned out like a new flavour of Pot Noodle in the local supermarket, that is then on offer because nobody buys it.
I am one of those fans that if you said to me anything after X is even a remotely enjoyable experience, I would then proceed to nick your shoes and chuck them onto the nearest phone line.
I dream of Ifrit or Shiva taking me to some baron land to offer me their services, so the next time someone kicks off with me in town I can summon them accordingly. Should be good right?
Lets get on with it then…..
Final Fantasy XV takes place on the fictional world of Eos. All the world’s countries—bar the kingdom of Lucis—are under the dominion of the empire of Niflheim. Noctis Lucis Caelum, heir to the Lucian throne, goes on a quest to retake his homeland and its magical crystal after it is seized by Niflheim on the eve of peace negotiations between the two nations.
Now i had to copy all that from Wiki, because none of the backstory is memorable to be honest, it sets the tone in the usual Fantasy sort of way that you would expect. But the way the story progresses is the main fault of this recent addition to the series. Brief FMV clips with no dialogue are shown and expect you to know or care what is going on, they do look very nice but there is no build up or explanation of why you all know each other or why it is all kicking off with these imperial dudes. Do they not like my hair?
Band of brothers
Noctis and co are a bit annoying at first, but you do warm to them as the game goes on. The style of the characters has been slated all over social media coming up to the release, but I think they suit the style of the game and give Final Fantasy that modern Japanese look they where going for. Well, that is until you hear them speak. .I have heard you can change to Japanese audio though so it might be worth doing unless you want to listen to characters that resemble Donald Trump if he was a mechanic.
Some of the one liners the characters have between themselves did make me chuckle though, and I found myself getting excited when buying food so I could just hear Ignis say “Ive found a new recipe!”
Fantasy (fans) may cry
The new battle system is all in real time. Now if you are like me and that fills you with disgust and pure rage….its good. At times it feels more like Devil may cry than Final Fantasy, but there is something satisfying about the games combo system and team mechanics that keeps it fresh throughout the game.
While nowhere the depths of its turn based counterpart but it is satisfying and you do have to use your head to defeat some enemies or bosses
Do you like my mates hair?
Grass elegantly sways about , hair waves in the wind. The whole area looks really polished and some of the boss fights are a joy to witness. One encounter blows everything out of the water and is some of the best graphics I have ever seen on a console. There are some parts of the game though that show the odd sloppy texture and some areas look like they have been stuck on. Nicky minaj with makeup for the most part though.
Summons look very nice but you cannot summon whenever, instead the game tells you to summon at random points in the game. At one point it popped up with one soldier in the battle, but its always nice to see anyway.
A final fantasy game should have excellent audio right?
Musically the game is good without being outstanding. There are some nice piano songs that would ring true with most fans, but there is nothing memorable. I always look forward to the battle music as it is usually addictive and something you will be humming for months on end, but there is nothing like that here. Sounds good, but it isn’t going to be finding its way on your tracklist anytime soon.
A really nice touch and a bit of fan service is listening to old games soundtracks while in the car. Flying down a motorway while blasting out the FFVII soundtrack does tickle the strings a bit, and very nice to see.
The bottom line
One thing with the game that really annoyed me, is the first 10 hours there was little in the way of story or dialogue. After this it heats up and progresses at a fast rate. I don’t see why there is nothing in the way of this in the first few hours, well there is but not to the same extent it is later on.
The game does get more linear as it draws to climax but it didn’t stop me enjoying it in any way. Apart from Chapter 13 – that was nearly a game breaker for me. Argghhhhh chapter 13. You will all see…… meh hahahaha.
When I bought this game, and in the build up to its release I was very sceptical. I longed for a good Final Fantasy that I could enjoy and give me some love back for the long standing but admittedly now over rated franchise. While this game is not perfect it really is a positive achievement and gives us a glimpse of where Square Enix see Final Fantasy going forwards.
By the end of the game I was impressed by not only the game itself but the new found hope I now have for future games in the series. And it could very well be my game of the year!