What better way to celebrate my victory, yesterday, over Final Fantasy XIII then by posting a review? I knew I was close to the end, with one battle left to go, but I had no idea that was actually three battles! Two hours without a save point is exhausting! I’m also very sure the laws of physics are different in the world of XIII. I have no idea how Cocoon even exist with that huge hole in it. Fang and Vanille avoid a collision by doing this, which makes even less sense. If you click on that link, know those are two planets. Maybe I’m the one at fault, though. How dare I expect a fantasy video game to make sense?
Final Fantasy XIII is divided into 13 chapters. I was crazy annoyed with the whole game until the end of chapter 11. My main complaint is that most of the gameplay is left to the battle system. There is no awesome card game like in Final Fantasy VIII, no catching frogs like in Final Fantasy IX. There’s no snow boarding like in Final Fantasy VII. There’s no gravestone that reads “here lies Link” like in…. I think that was the original Final Fantasy. Nope, none of that. Just running from the government and fighting.
Maybe that would have been okay except the battle system was REALLY annoying. I have a lot of buttons on my controller besides X, and I would very much prefer to use them. Luckily, towards the last chapter or two, things required more thought. I was still mostly pressing X during the battle, but a lot of thought went into how I set up my characters. The battle wasn’t ever the real game. The game was arming and organizing a winning party, then seeing if your plan succeeded. I guess that is fun in some ways, but it was still a sub par battle system in comparison to what Final Fantasy has done before.
Did I mention the story. The story left me really confused.
Aside from all that, the characters grew on me. I was disappointed in Light at first because she was basically Cloud in drag (I mean, it’s not like that hasn’t happened before). Eventually she developed her own personality, though. She laughed and cried. Actually, I love her character. I see now why she was voted as the favorite female Final Fantasy character in Japan. Actually, all the girls in this game were bad ass. They were all unique.
The men of the game were also unique. Sazh grew on me real fast and he might be one of my favorite Final Fantasy characters of all time. He was many things, but I most loved him for being a father who was simply trying to save his son. I nearly cried at the end of the game when his son appeared. I was just so happy for him. I hope we get to see more of him in the next two games. The other two guys were… well, they weren’t my favorite characters, but they were different. I have to give credit where credit is due, Final Fantasy XIII has one of the best cast of characters. The music was phenomenal and the artwork was great!
All in all, the game was fun enough that I will play the second game. I hear it was better and fixed a lot of the problems with this one. That said, it’s not like they would have to do a whole lot to make it better. Can I have a real battle system and a card game please?
I really miss the card game.