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Is it just me who remembers Final Fantasy III – actually, that’s FF VI if you’re Japanese – the mercurial tale of the evil Kefka and heroes Sabin, Edgar, Terra, et al? I recall the brilliant use of magical espers, its line-up of amazingly distinct fighters – Sabin even channelling Street Fighter-style special moves in a clever …

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Errm...

I'm not arguing with the bulk of the review but the whole point of FFXIII-2 is that it doesn't have any pre-rendered CGI, it's all done in-engine?

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WTF?

Not much of a point to hang a game on is it?

I remember when all games visuals were done in-engine. They may not have been pretty but at least you could you-know *play* them.

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@Gordon

Agreed. I recently picked up a PSP from game for the sole purpose of playing Square's FF back catalogue - FF V with it's awesome job system, FF VI for it's amazing storyline, FF VII....

I think it was around 8 that the rot started to set in. There was an over-reliance on the summoned creatures (or Guardian Forces as the game called them) to do most of the work. This meant that the main characters themselves lost a lot of their attachment because aside from their Limit Breaks, they were pretty much just blank slates. It didn't help matters that Squall was an unlikeable asshole as well.

FF IX was a step back in the right direction, although the irritating character syndrome did rear its head from time to time. Cutscenes and summon scenes also increased again.

And then we had FF X. A beautifully rendered game with beautiful graphics but absolutely zero charm. Then X-2, XII, XIII.....in each one the game play and characterisation took a definite back seat to seeing how far they could push the graphics engine.

FF doesn't do it for me any more and I'm happy playing the SNES ones with crappy graphics and characters that I actually give a damn about.

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Facepalm

FF-X?

zero charm? i think it's one of the best in the series. I almost cried when Auron "died", i actually did have to wipe away a tear when Tidus fades away and i bought FFX-2 not only because i love the series, but also because i felt the game wasn't finished.

The father/son scenes, the beautiful scenes with Yuna and her "dance macabre"

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FFIX is one of my favourites too, not necessarily the best gameplay, but great characters and story (well for the first half of the game at least) and minigames.

I never liked FFX much either - gone was the exploration, its linearity made it dull at times. FFX-2 was dismissed by many for being too light hearted, and due to its unconventional mission system, which actually made it anything but linear. It's my favourite on the PS2 because the combat system was brilliant, the job system was a throwback to FFV, and it was actually a lot of fun to play. On the other hand, I only got about 15 hours into FFXII before getting bored and giving up.

Not in a great hurry to pick up a PS3 or Xbox 360, there's still plenty of SNES, PS1 and PS2 RPGs I haven't played yet.

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JDX
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Just the TV ads for FF make me want to retch. Terrible voice acting over some 'inspirational' woman singing.

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WTF?

wait... what?

"but FF XIII-2’s over-reliance on pre-rendered cutscenes is simply impossible to ignore."

Since Final Fantasy went 3D, the CGI cutscenes are what the fans want, it's what we've come to expect when getting a new installment. I can go along with the rest of the review, but really don't understand why a beautiful, detailed and long intro movie is a bad thing, it's one of the things i most look forward to when first starting the new game

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Facepalm

I don't believe it was the intro movie per-say that was Lucy's problem. It was the fact that it played a 20 min movie prior to beginning the game, and then when she started the game it played the exact same movie again (only this time it had some additional voice acting).

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I was slightly annoyed by this as well. But whatever it's still a nice intro movie, and one that I can show friends without having to start a new game.

I was much more pleased that I didn't lose an hour of my life to a 2 gig update download and install, then another 100 meg download and install, then 30 minutes to actually install the game to the hdd.

Thank you Square Enix for designing a game that can actually run from the disc!

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Unhappy

FF7

It all went down hill after this.

Not quickly downhill mind you, but pretty inexorably.

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Alien

FF7 always

FF7 was most definitely the finest game they ever made, just huge in scope.

That's what I've always loved about the FF games, right from when I started playing them on the old GB with their B&W graphics. I've now played every version, upto and including 13 (and even the online one) and to my mind 13 is definitely the worst. It's as if all the thought went into what you do *after* the end credits, and no thought was put into the actual storyline itself. Maybe what they ought to do is what they did with FF1-6, go right back to the beginning and redo them, bring out a FF7 redux for the PS3 with updated graphics and a game that I would be quite happy to spend months playing, instead of completing in just a few hours and being left wondering why on earth I spent so much for a game I would have been happy to wait for a second hand copy of.

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Unhappy

Having already gotten rid of my copy of FF13 for similar reasons, this sounds all to familiar when a company uses a brand name to sell a half baked game. I know that evolution, not revolution is important, but this goes so far in missing the mark that it veers and hits an old lady in the next county on.

The last great FF game I played was FF9, which combined the best of 8 and 7 on the Playstation and offered hours of exploration and fun - something that more recent titles seem to have ignored/forgotten/hidden/replaced (delete as appropriate). Hell, I'd always go back to SNES era FF games and the mighty Chrono Trigger for an example of better squaresoft titles.

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Big fan... not inspired

As someone who's taken a week off work to play each new title on release date I'd consider myself one of the more dedicated fans.

Tomorrow I'm off to Egypt for a week and feel no remorse. I watched a few trailers and played five minutes of the demo. Uninspired.

I like the cut scenes, ok the dialogue attached can be rubbish but chunky swords and scanty clothing does it for me. What I don't like is the same rehashed characters. Has there ever been a FF game where at least one of the playable characters hasn’t been an orphan on a voyage for self-discovery? It’s getting boring now. Noel looks like a c**t. I really don’t want to spend 100 hours getting all trophies when I just want to smash the shit out of the lead.

Whilst many would argue, with the exception of Paine in FFX-2, all playable characters in modern FF games have some form of personality. I hated Steiner in FFIX and for that reason IX is my favourite by a long shot. It doesn’t look like they’ve even tried with this release. A CGI fest and nothing but.

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IX was good.

Personally I loved VII, IX and XII (although XII's lead character was pointless).

I never finished VI. I liked III on the DS though.

VIII was too boring. X was worse. X-2 I couldn't even look at. XIII I have avoided. XIII-2 I shall do the same with thanks.

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Unhappy

When they changed their fighting system from directly controlling combat to basically managing combat like some sort of middle management they lost me.

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Devil

"That’s not to say you’ll do nothing, there’s still the action button to hammer as you hit the auto attack choice – the AI nearly always picking attacks most effective against your current foe."

That would be useful in Afghanistan.

Also, what IS that cactus swastika thing?

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@DAM

It's a creature called a Cactuar.

Usually they're an absolute bugger to hit in melee and suicide for under-levelled characters because of the way they always do 1000 damage per hit. Also apparently edible according to some games in the series.

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I Love FF8

I hated it all the way from the start to the end, but then a read an article on gameFAQs about the best way to play the game (not gain any XP whatsoever until the very end) and found it immensly enjoyable the second time around.

Also, in FF8 there was a lot of participation in battles, more than FF6, FF7 or FF9. Surely that's part of the whole fun? I lost interest after the battle system became automated - why?!

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Pint

I am excited by this game

I thoroughly enjoyed FF XIII. And am looking forward to playing this. I haven't played any of the earlier incarnations of FF, though it is on my list to do so.

I like the game/movie hybrid feel to this series. Bit like chilling and watching telly with some gaming thrown in, a sprinkling of RPG and it looks pretty - what's not to like? I don't always want my heart racing in a game nor do I always want to have to make hardcore strategic decisions in commanding large military forces.

I thought the combat system in XIII was excellent and it seems that this has been kept with even more enhancements. Yes, you can auto battle your way through and enjoy the story, but you will certainly not 5 star every fight by using autobattle. My 14 year old son still looks at me with envy because I 5 starred the final boss in XIII. Of course, he just owns me on COD, GoW, etc!

A pint, because that is what I will be having while I sit back and watch the intro to my new game for this weekend.

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FAIL

Final Fantasy?

I think Squaresoft needs to take a break with these series. I played FF1, FF4, FF5, FF6, FF7, FF8, FF9 and yes even the godwaful FF10.

I think that they have focused on make the graphics prettier but forgot to make the characters memorable. It seems their "moody" main character schtick is pretty worn out already. Even in Dissidia, they make fun of Cloud and Squall for that reason. Give us another Cid Highwind, another Sabin Figaro, instead of Emo McAloof v13.0.

Squaresoft, make a sequel to Legend of Mana, a good sequel to Chrono Trigger. You have a great deal of worthy property...USE IT and don't fuck it up like Sega with Phantasy Star.

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Why doesn't square "enix" just do the right thing?

It's been said by everyone now, remake final fantasy VII!

Yes it'd be difficult but it'd make so much money. They've made games around it and remade nearly everything else, the PSVita is even getting a remake of FFX (HD).

If Sony could make it a launch title for the next gen of console they'd probably shift a good many consoles and pull some of the share away from Microsoft.

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Anonymous Coward

"Gaming’s most ironically titled game gets another sequel" - made me laugh ;)

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Meh

There hasn't been a good Final Fantasy since 9. When they screwed up the fighting mechanics, ditched the world map, and made all the protagonists whiney and dull I gave up. And yes, the voice acting ruined the series.

I will happily sit and play through classic FF. It may not have the graphics of its younger cousins, but by God it had 1000 times more heart.

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ff7

FF7

my favorite is FF7,just because its story and Cloud &Tifa

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