Review: Final Fantasy XV

Developer: Square Enix | Year: 2016 | List Price: $34.99 | Buy from Amazon

Final Fantasy XV, the latest instalment in the long-running Final Fantasy series of role-playing games, is a game that has been in development in some form or another since 2006, a whopping ten years before its final release in 2016. I’m a huge fan of Final Fantasy, having played most of the other mainline titles in the franchise, so I was excited to see the newest developments in the series, but I had definite reservations about the direction Square Enix decided to take in this instalment. Having now finished the main story, I can tell you that Final Fantasy XV is, at once, one of the most wonderful and one of the most frustrating experiences in recent memory.
Continue reading

Review: Final Fantasy (PSone)

Developer: Square Co., Ltd. | Year: 2003 | List Price: $9.99 | Buy from Amazon

Final_Fantasy_1_psx_jpTwo days. That’s how long it took me to beat this game. There was no school yesterday, so I started Final Fantasy Origins for the first time on my PS Vita. 32 real-world (and 15 game-world) hours later, I beat Final Fantasy I. That’s the fastest I’ve ever beaten any JRPG, let alone Final Fantasy game — for comparison’s sake, I spent almost 2 months on Final Fantasy VI! But how does it actually compare to other Final Fantasy games? Read on to find out! Note: This is the Final Fantasy Origins version of Final Fantasy, which bundled it with Final Fantasy II for the PSone. I haven’t played II yet, but if/when I do, I’ll do a separate review for that game. 
Continue reading

Review: Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collection

Developer: Square Enix | Year: 2011 | List Price: $19.99 | Buy from Amazon

FFIV_Complete_CollectionI’m currently on a quest to beat the first seven North American Final Fantasy games (since they’re all playable on Vita). First I played VI, VII, and X, in that order, and I was missing the sprites and old-schooliness of VI a little so I thought I’d go a little further back. Final Fantasy IV is one of the most celebrated of the franchise, some even going so far as to call it the best in the series. Since its original release as Final Fantasy II in North America, Final Fantasy IV has seen an almost excessive amount of re-releases. You can play it on the SNES, the PSX, the GBA, the DS, the PSP, as well as on iOS and Android. I’m personally playing the PSP version, The Complete Collection, on my Vita. It also includes the two sequels, the Interlude and The After Years, but I didn’t play those. I think I can still give a fair review of the package, however, and the sequels aren’t too celebrated anyway.
Continue reading

Blog: My Turbulent First Year With JRPGs

On 7 February 2015, it’ll have been exactly one year since Bravely Default was released to North America. It was also the day I picked up a copy of Bravely Default, my first ever JRPG.

I qualify this by saying that I have been playing Pokemon games all my life, which are a pseudo-JRPG, and that I’d played Fire Emblem Awakening, a Japanese SRPG that was actually what made me interested in getting into deeper, more mature RPGs.

That over, I’m going to go through the 6 JRPGs I finished in the last year in the order I played them, as well as the dozens more I haven’t quite finished, and give a few thoughts on the genre as well as some JRPGs I’m excited to play in 2015. It’s going to be a long ride, so get yourself ready for a hearty, warming bowl of JRPG goodness! I’m keeping everything spoiler-free, so don’t worry if you haven’t played any of the following games.
Continue reading

Review: Final Fantasy X HD Remaster (Vita)

Developer: Square Enix | Year: 2013 | List Price: 19.99 | Buy from Amazon

ffxx2vitaThe other day, there was a sale at the local EB Games and I found a copy of Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD for only $15. So I ignored the fact that I already had about a dozen games in my backlog and took the plunge. 3 weeks later, and with over 40 hours lost, I’ve finished the Final Fantasy X HD and thought I should do a review on just the one game. I’ll make sure I cover X-2 separately when I play it later on. Note that I didn’t play the original FFX (I was only three when it came out!) and the only other Final Fantasy games I’ve played are FFVI and FFVII.
Continue reading