Finally after years of development hell Final Fantasy XV is here! Using the infamous luminous engine it looks amazing but is it what we have come to know and love from previous final fantasy games or a step in a whole new direction?
OK so I’m going to get straight into it. The story in this game is just a mess. It’s evident that this game was rushed out, the story is almost broken in parts and without any spoilers, characters didn’t get as much screen time as they should and you find it really hard to believe that this is the finished product that Square Enix wanted us to have. The game needed more time, it’s not so bad that’s its unplayable by any means it’s just frustrating to think what an amazing experience this game could have been had it been finished. Saying that though it is apparently exceeding expectations.
Now let’s get on to what Final Fantasy XV does right. The previous instalment (final fantasy XIII) was heavily criticised from its linear game play. Final Fantasy XV puts this right and almost gives you too much to explore to the point it really doesn’t feel like a final fantasy game at all. We have a car to drive around called the Regalia which you can customise until your heart’s content and even upgrade come the end game. Instead of the old linear approach Final Fantasy Xv throws so many side quests at you that you will feel overwhelmed and aside the hunts they are mostly boring fetch quests that get old quick. However on the odd occasion you get a fun quest where you explore new areas find hidden goodies and get owned by a monster miles a higher level than yourself.
Some of the dungeon design is questionable too. Don’t get me wrong some dungeons are a ton of fun where others feel like they were rushed out. Going into a dungeon which consists of all level 7s until I get to the boss which oh happens to be level 52 is both unfair and annoying because I’m going to die and it means I have lost all the progress I made in that dungeon.
At some points in the game it’s so evident that something has been cut because the 2nd part of the game is the biggest rush job I have ever seen. Environment’s are reused (trains) and it’s almost painfully how fast the plot just throws itself into chaos. The open world part of the game is done incredibly well though you have your 4 characters patrolling through the big open world doing whatever you wanna do when you wanna do it the only thing that restricts you is the time of day because at night the world is a very dangerous place. This isn’t so bad though it encourages you to rest up and accumulate all that hard-earned Exp. It’s a hell of a lot of fun to explore the open world discover new secrets reveal new ingredients for food, hunt down new dangerous monsters for money and rare loot.
The combat is one of the things I both love and hate about the game. Noctis has a whole arsenal of weapons at his disposal, adding more and more as the game goes on. It’s a nice change of pace that you can decide how you wanna play it do you wanna get in close and personal or do you wanna keep your distance and use a ranged weapon. Summons are incredibly effective and yes it is complete RNG as to when and how often you get one and no you cannot pick which you get they do save your bacon in the worst of times though. The animations for the summons are nothing short of stunning and its clear lot of work was put into making them look as powerful like, as possible. Levelling up is also helped along by the Ascension skill tree. You have the choice what you want to improve, stats, skills and even ways to receive more AP by driving your car.
Final Fantasy XV is not a bad game not at all. its just not the finished product I had the main story done in 20 hours. I was level 40 when I finished it, in previous Final Fantasy I’m usually level 60 is so that kind of surprised me too yes I didn’t do the majority of the side quests and maybe I should have. you will be pleased to know however you can go back and do them all once the game is done. So those who are completion’s like myself can get all the trophies.
With the promise of patched free DLC for the story including all new cut scenes……. (really) Final Fantasy XV is not the game it should have been. It’s clear it needed another 6 months at least in order to be the perfect or near perfect game. It angers me because we already waited 10 years what was another 6 months? the season pass I believe will flesh out the content a bit more. DLC featuring the 3 characters which will hopefully elaborate more on the events in the story and maybe give those characters from the supporting cast a bit more background story than they originally got.
In the end Final Fantasy XV is a great game as an open world RPG and its up there with the best but for a Franchise that’s excelled in the past for having a great storyline Final Fantasy XV really dropped the ball so much. The game says it’s a Final Fantasy for fans old and new which, to be honest is true. It adds new exciting elements to the franchise but still retains certain aspects that have been in previous Final Fantasy’s.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Sony Playstation 4 code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Gameplay - /10
Graphics - /10
Sound - /10
Replay Value - /10