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Final Fantasy XII


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I didn't see this thread created, so, I figured I'd put one together. Final Fantasy XII has been out for a few days now, and I wanted to get an initial reaction from everyone who's played it.

Good, bad and otherwise, I'd like to hear your opinions. I'm sure there's a lot of people who want to buy the game as well, that could stand for some opinions on it.

So let fly the opinions.

I picked up my copy of FFXII Collector's Edition yesterday, it comes with a bonus DVD with all kinds of goodies on it including an Art Gallery. Of course, you can get the artwork in the special edition of the Brady Games strategy guide, as it comes in book form as well. It's $29.95 USD at GameStop around my way, so it may be worth it if you're into the art of FF.

So far, playing the game has been a lot of fun. In game sequences are nice, the FMV scenes in full CGI are awesome. And...of course, the music. So far, I've only heard a few of the pieces in the game just from playing, and so far I like what I hear. So I'm planning on getting my hands on the soundtrack at some point.

Now that you know how I feel, what do the rest of you think about this game? Is it the best one yet? Does it replace FFVII at the top of the food chain, or is it another sequel in a long line of games? (And for those FFX/FFX-2 haters out there, did you think it was superior?)

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lol. FFT is semi-canon. It's the same as any non numbered Final Fantasy. More like a spinoff series than anything.

Overall, FFXII is probably the best FF game since FF6 and FF7 as far as I'm concerned (though I still had a lot of fun playing FF8, FF9 and even FFX/FFX-2).

The game play is really great in FFXII in that you can control a lot of the smallest actions that go on in real time and often, you can just sit back and manage your team instead of slaving over every little action. Though the traditional RPG system isn't bad in itself, I think the change is well done.

The production values with the presentation, the music, character models, menu, animation and even the English voice acting is really top notch and there's few things to complain there.

My biggest super giant complaint (sarcasm) with FFXII is the story, which just palpably seems to play it safe with a very straightforward story. I'm on my 20th hour or so now, ignoring most miniquests until I'm near the end of the game and nothing about the plot is really up for discussion since there is little if no ambiguity about it. And you know those caricatures of characters in most modern Final Fantasies where the unique quirks of the characters singlehandedly made the games bearable to play? (looking at FF8 and FFX) I sort of miss those types of avant garde characters that made Final Fantasy games stand out in the RPG crowd. Not that the characters in FFXII are bad in any means, but they just don't stand out for themselves amongst the crowd. The story and characters, again, aren't bad. Just.... average if a bit uninspired.

For a game that makes me miss Sakaguchi's pacing and Uematsu's melodic themes, FFXII is a really nice and possibly huge step forward. If anything, the game play sets it apart.

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Best Final Fantasy since Final Fantasy Tactics (same scenarist, too). I am enjoying it immensely; the new gameplay design is a gret breath of fresh air for the RPG genre.

This game is great so far, and it has renewed my faith in Square Enix.

EDIT- A formal request for the use of spoiler tags where appropriate in this thread.

Request granted.

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Best Final Fantasy since Final Fantasy Tactics

Agreed.

lol. FFT is semi-canon. It's the same as any non numbered Final Fantasy. More like a spinoff series than anything.

I don't exactly understand what you mean by 'canon' in this case. The majority of FF games take place in what seems like completely separate worlds than one another. I would understand if they were all linked by something more than chocobos, moogles, and Cids, but that isn't the case. Even FFXII is in it's own separate world; it's not quite FFT or FFTA's worlds. Even though they're all called Ivalice, they all have their differences.

Anyway, back to my point-- the FFs are all separate games(with the exception of X-2), and so calling one of the games 'semi-canon' is really quite pointless.

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Tell me all the wrong points in this video review:

http://www.gametrailers.com/gamepage.php?id=1684

It's the first video. Is the game this unbalanced?

I haven't played it yet, but that review does seem quite strong to the point that it is almost an attack on the game. He made the game sound like a complete pile of crap; overextended, disappointing story with two dimensional characters and poor repetitive gameplay. The opposite of what every other reviewer says. Nevertheless, if you go to gameranking you find only one reviewer goes below the 90% mark.

http://www.gamerankings.com/htmlpages2/459841.asp

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I don't exactly understand what you mean by 'canon' in this case. The majority of FF games take place in what seems like completely separate worlds than one another. I would understand if they were all linked by something more than chocobos' date=' moogles, and Cids, but that isn't the case. Even FFXII is in it's own separate world; it's not quite FFT or FFTA's worlds. Even though they're all called Ivalice, they all have their differences.[/quote']

Matsuno loves injecting phantoms of continuity into his works. He did it with the Ogre Battle games, and he did it again with FFT, FFTA, and FF12. Also, if you've played Vagrant Story, FF12 contains some mild references to that game as well, and it's not even a Final Fantasy title.

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I don't exactly understand what you mean by 'canon' in this case. The majority of FF games take place in what seems like completely separate worlds than one another. I would understand if they were all linked by something more than chocobos' date=' moogles, and Cids, but that isn't the case. Even FFXII is in it's own separate world; it's not quite FFT or FFTA's worlds. Even though they're all called Ivalice, they all have their differences.[/quote']

Matsuno loves injecting phantoms of continuity into his works. He did it with the Ogre Battle games, and he did it again with FFT, FFTA, and FF12. Also, if you've played Vagrant Story, FF12 contains some mild references to that game as well, and it's not even a Final Fantasy title.

Oh, I know that. I just meant that, considering that each FF game is a different world, it's pretty pointless to call one of the games 'semi-canon' just because it has 'Tactics' at the end of the name instead of a number.

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I haven't posted here in a while, but here's what I thought of this game.

I also think its one of the best FF's in years. I really haven't had this much fun playing a story driven RPG in a really long time. Here's a copy/paste from another review I wrote.

It has its flaws, and there's room for improvement is Square or some other studio ever decided to take cues from this game or continue its trend, but regardless its a huge step in the right direction I think. For a series as steeped in tradition as FF is, it makes that step in difference even more apparent.

This games' made something very apparent to me, the traditional RPG style we've all come to know up until now has become really archaic. I mean...we all know RPG's have been sort of stuck in this kind of rut after a point but this game made it even more apparent but not in a bad way. Its true that many of the innovations in the gameplay obviously have some influence from MMORPG's, but the fact its a traditional 1 player RPG as well as the fact there's many other things as well that were thrown in to help make it a refreshing experience make that not an issue at all. If anything, it almost seems odd it took so long for a studio to take some kind of cue from an MMO's system. But the influences are really only skin deep, it still feels very different to me.

I think the best thing about the combat system is that it really helps to immerse you in FFXII's world in a way that the traditional way of changing everything to go to a combat screen or mode while not completely losing RPG gameplay. Especially when it comes to strategy and running from enemies, it makes it a lot more tense and exciting. I don't think I could go back to FF's old battle system after this.

More than anything though, to me what I've enjoyed the most is the feel and the story. Its been a really long time since an RPG made me want to get out into the world it presented and have an adventure, see whats out there...and whats in store for you're character. None of the characters hogged the spotlight too much, they were all written pretty well, the story was epic and fun, and the feel was just...so much of a journey. It may have had futuristic technology in it but it felt more like an awsome fantasy story for you to experience than any of the recent FF's or recent RPG's have for me. Just a lot of fun, I felt great after finishing it.

Some other stuff.

+Voice acting was shockingly good. I played the Japanese version with a friend to try it out, and I think I actually prefer the english voice acting. Its just so much more fitting to the feel. Especially for characters like Balthier, Basch, Vossler, and Ashe. They all had a great range of emotion and never overacted, and the huge variety in accents and dialects with all the races and characters really helped to make the world feel alive. I think its one of the best VA jobs in gaming in recent years. Particular props for Fran's exotic, Brazillian but not quite accent. And Vaan's adolescent, but not annoying or whiny voice. It was one of the most natural sounding young person voices I've heard in a while, and the fact he was so chill a character made it a god send. Especially compared to Tidus...

-The only problem though is some of the sound quality of the voices sounds a bit muffled in parts.

+The huge world, especially the cities, really made the game exciting and immersive. Cities actually felt like cities with enormous areas and a huge amount of NPC's all doing various things. The culture and backstory of the world was also great. Anything that takes place in Ivalice seems to be great.

+Combat system as I explained above, is a great breath of fresh air. The gambits are a stroke of genius and the ability board is pretty fun to play around with. Great variety of weapons and combinations and all magic is useful.

-I think the system would of benefitted from being a little more interactive when it comes to attacking and maybe dodging. The gambit's can sometimes be a little too effective to the point you don't have to do that much. I think if they put you in the action a little more with a little more required input it would of made it even better. How many times also did you come to a roadblock that you thought "Why can't Vaan/etc just jump over it? lol". Stuff like that, it felt like more input would of been welcome.

-Characters still have a little problem with distinction. Theres stats yes, and you don't have to build everyone to be the same but a little more distinction I think would of been nice.

-I still don't know why there's not a single Bangaa, Moogle, Seeq, or something in you're party. Its not a huge deal I admit, but in such a varied and beautifully rich world it just seems like such a waste to have a party of nothing but Hume's and the token sexy non-human girl...in this case a Viera. Especially considering how awsome some of the other race NPC's look. Shame really.

+Music is generally very pretty. It has a cool sweeping orchestrated feel with an exotic touch to it. I personally like the lack of an established battle theme to be played over and over.

+Story is a very nice change of pace for this series, and RPG's in general. Real adventurous and epic, with a good share of dramatic moments and moments for just plain fun. Characters are generally well written.

-The story sort of slows down a bit in the middle however, maybe a bit unecessarilly. It picks up again but I can't help but feel like maybe there was more that could of been thrown in story wise.

+Locations and visuals are of course stunning. The design of the area's and levels though I have to say is particularly well done.

All and all I think this is really the direction this series and many other RPG's should head. I don't mean copying the game exactly...but just a movement to slowly letting go of some really archaic RPG traditions that quite franky need to be put to rest. Whether FF does continue down this path, or sadly go back to the way it was before though one thing's for sure, this game was a blast itself.

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I don't exactly understand what you mean by 'canon' in this case. The majority of FF games take place in what seems like completely separate worlds than one another. I would understand if they were all linked by something more than chocobos' date=' moogles, and Cids, but that isn't the case. Even FFXII is in it's own separate world; it's not quite FFT or FFTA's worlds. Even though they're all called Ivalice, they all have their differences.[/quote']

Matsuno loves injecting phantoms of continuity into his works. He did it with the Ogre Battle games, and he did it again with FFT, FFTA, and FF12. Also, if you've played Vagrant Story, FF12 contains some mild references to that game as well, and it's not even a Final Fantasy title.

Oh, I know that. I just meant that, considering that each FF game is a different world, it's pretty pointless to call one of the games 'semi-canon' just because it has 'Tactics' at the end of the name instead of a number.

From what I understand, there's a loose chronology going on here - FFXII comes first, then several centuries later there's FFT, and then waaaaay after that is FFTA.

I got the game last night and played 14 hours straight, although there's only 11 hours on the game timer due to some early misfortunes.

I think the best thing about the gameplay is that it takes the grind out of grind-levelling, while still letting you have complete control when it counts.

My biggest beef is the camera - when you're indoors, if you so much as touch a wall, it zooms in on your crotch/ass (depending on which way you're facing). Extremely annoying when trying to navigate tight spaces. Some sort of camera lock would be handy here (maybe use the same key as Target Lock in battle (it's either L1 or L2, but I don't remember because I never used it) since it's not being used in exploration mode).

The other issue I have is with the graphics - while it's high-detail and polished, there's many tiny little bugs that most people probably wouldn't notice (some tearing here and there) and the lack of antialiasing is getting on my nerves at some points. I've also had the audio go glitchy on me a few times during heated battles (when many SFX are playing at once).

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The PSF (68MB) has been out for ages, and I listened to it until I got tired of it. It's a whole different experience listening to it in-game though. To me, its main appeal and drawback is that the whole thing sounds _the same_. It's nice because it all meshes together real well (especially in-game) but there really isn't too much variation on the overall 'feel' of it, and while there's 120-some tracks, about 60 of them are variations on each other, so by about the halfway point it just starts to feel "same-y".

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So how's the music anyone? I have the game in front of me (couldn't resist when I saw it for $38), but my PS2 isn't here atm.

The music is great, but not nearly as melodic as it was for something like FFT. It's somewhat similar to Vagrant Story's music with a lot more ambiance than melody.

As for the connections between FFT, Vagrant Story, FFTA and FFXII, I think such connections are superficial at best. FFTA is obviously based on the real world but with the magical book that has a fictional world of Ivalice in it. That obviously can't possibly directly correlate to FFXII's self sustaining world.

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Considering the reviews this game has received, I've heard some pretty mixed things about the story itself. I'm wondering if this is a matter of taste?

For example, I'm alternately hearing people say that the story is horrible, while others say it's the best rpg story on PS2 out of all PS2 rpg's, which is quite a claim.

The reviews seem consistent, but what people are posting on various boards on teh intarwebs seems to vary widely...

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