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It will be kind of hard to determine which games are the middle of the road, so I will be separating the games I think are genuinely good games, and which games are just okay. I don't think any Final Fantasy game is actually poor but there are a couple that are on the bottom for sure. I won't be getting into sequels and spin-offs, or online games. OST means original soundtrack when I use it.

First of all, this is the list of Final Fantasy games that I think are good games:

Final Fantasy X
Final Fantasy IX
Final Fantasy VII
Final Fantasy XIII
Final Fantasy VI
Final Fantasy IV

Borderline:
VIII and XII

Just Okay:
I
II
III
XV
V

Lets go over the Just Okay games.

I and II - offer nothing to someone who didn't own them on NES, because their only selling point is nostalgia and catchy 8-bit music. There is much better nostalgia and much better music in subsequent releases. And honestly there are only a couple non-mario NES games worth playing in 2018 anyway.

III - I tried this game on DS and I just couldn't get into it. It lacks the flare and intrigue of IV, which is also on DS, has some dull protagonists, and since the DS graphics were one of the things i didn't like about IV, they certainly weren't going to help me admire III. The soundtrack is also too much like I and II.

XV - The game's opening, pushing a car that won't start, basically summarizes how I feel about this game. It's a monotonous crawl where Noctis is the only interesting character and even he and his Sasuke-rip-off boyish charm can't save this game from falling flat on it's face. There are better open world games out there. There are better Final Fantasy games out there. And I think the combat looks silly. This game is Squarely (see what I did there) at the bottom of my list because at least the other games in my Just Ok list are actual Final fantasy games.

TL;DR: I don't like this direction if the franchise is going to continue this way.

V - Probably the game with the most potential of my Just Okay titles. I think terrible lines and localization are the main problem. The job system is interesting and some moments are quite amusing. The game looks like absolute shit visually, even for a snes game. This and VI could certainly benefit from the DS treatment III and IV got, and on 3DS they would look even better. It's too bad it probably won't happen.

--

Middle of the Road:

XII - I think 12 is actually a good game. It's fun, addictive, and makes grinding enjoyable somehow. Balthier is one of the best characters Square has ever put out, and I love some of his one liners. I don't think XII is a good FINAL FANTASY game. It goes off too far from it's roots and feels like it's own thing. I think I'd respect square a little more if they just gave it a different name and released it as it's own IP. This is one I have no problem going back because it has a lot of charm and replayability.

VIII - I have a love hate relationship with this game. It's the first Final fantasy game I ever played and it set the standard for me. It has the best soundtrack of the entire franchise. It's quite possibly the best OST music on PS1. It's clearly Nobuo at his absolute apex. You hear a little bit of his apex in VII and IX as well, but because VIII lands right in the middle it's the golden goose of Final Fantasy OST.

I like Seifer, Edea, and Ultimecia as Villains - I enjoyed Sacred and Minotaur's back and fourth while you battle them. I even like Raijin and Fujin's squabbling. In fact most of the protagonist characters do interesting things. But the actual plot is a clusterfuck. The scene at Trabia garden makes me want to slit my wrists in boredom every time. The game basically doesn't have a plot and it tries to pass that off with time-loop, paradox bullshit, and things were going so well up until I'd say about end of disk 2. Edea should have continued to be the main villain and Ultimecia should have been like the Sith Lord Sorceress who trained her. The game's plot is about a 6/10 before it blows up, and a 0/10 after that, and the scene at Trabia is about a -2/10 because it's so long and awful. I hate that light house. So I like most of the characters and I hate the world they're in.

The draw/junction system is a terrible idea and easy to game the system. Playing hours of cards so that you CAN game the syustem is a long tedious monotonous chore but at least the card game has really good catchy music.

The gameplay in battle (and the music really helps this) is catchy, addictive, and endearingly awesome. But it is marred by the fact that the draw system is there, and you can make yourself overpowered at level 7 if you want. Infact, leveling yourself up makes the game harder which is dumb.

The Music gets an 11/10 from me.
The characters including Squall get a 9/10 from me. I didn't particularly like Quistis.
Dialog: 8/10
The story gets a 2/10 - with squall is dead theory bounce that up to 4/10
The world gets a 4/10
The battling gets a 7/10
Minigames get a 7/10
Replayability is a 6/10
And overall I give the game a 7/10.

--

Good Final Fantasy Games:

Final Fantasy X

This game is really easy unless you choose to make it difficult. It has a couple of places where the voice acting is pretty bad. The Final Boss literally can't kill you. Those are my only gripes with it.

Final Fantasy X has some really excellent voice acting and character building for both it's protagonists and villains (Seymour and Yunalesca), and some of the most emotional speeches in Final Fantasy. It has my personal favorite character, Rikku, and it brings the steal/use and mix systems which are inventive and add a lot of depth if you opt to:

Make the game harder by Not using Yuna, Play a No Sphere Grid Challenge, or play as ONLY Rikku.

Even if you hate the game's story it can be a fun challenging experience to play without using Yuna. I personally like the story and world building. It's replayability does go down over time though. But it has more replayability than a game like VIII because if you beat the game using just Rikku you can play it again and try to beat it using only Wakka who plays completely differently.

Final Fantasy X's easy difficulty is secretly it's biggest strength.

First Play Through: 10/10 (or X/X if you prefer)
Subsequent Playthroughs 8/10 with a .5 taken off of each playthrough.
Music: 10/10 - Not quite as good at VIII's.
Characters: 8/10
Voice Acting: Varies but more is good than bad.
Plot: 10/10
World Building 9/10
Overall 8.5/10

If you hate this game please try playing it with No Sphere Grid.

Final Fantasy VI

I've never gotten very far in this game because I am not sure how to get last the part where you're drifting down the river and that one boss keeps OHKOing me. I refuse to look up a solution and instead I just put the game on the back burner.

However the beginning of the game showcases the wonderful characters, music, and world building enough and I trust others that this game is probably objectively the best title in the series.

Final Fantasy VII

Probably the best world-building in the franchise, certainly the most interesting main protagonist. Cloud is Cooler than Squall, Zidane, and Tidus. I didn't even find him too edgy or emo. I think he has just enough edge to have bite and attitude but not so much that he drowns you in it. He simply doesn't care and he wants to get paid. He's a relatable protagonist even though he's an experienced super soldier.

The fighting theme for normal battles, and the victory fanfare I think are the best in the series. Even if FFVII was a terrible game with a plot shittier than VIII's that battle theme could carry it on it's back. It's Just. That. Good.

I don't think anyone needs Convincnf that FFVII is a good game or has the most nostagia value per capita of any of them. There is a reason why square is willing to spend millions to redo it with modern graphics and a new battle system.

And because there isn't really overpowered summons available early on, I feel the combat has more depth and strategy involved than IX, VIII, and certainly X. Final Fantasy VII's one legacy blemish is that it looks like ass nowadays. You could argue it looked like ass even when it first came out. Other than that it's probably a perfect game. Certainly a 9/10.

Final Fantasy IX

This game goes back to the roots of the franchise, and yet it's also the most unique game in the series because of it's art style, moralistic themes, and interesting world and characters. I am only about half way through it so I will finish this part later.

Final Hallway 13

Okay, yeah it's lack of directional options and rail road plot are limiting. But it's hard to deny how pretty the game is or how excellent the cinematics and music hold up even today. XIII is probably the most stylish and best-looking and sounding game on 360/PS3. Square held nothing back. It sold better than 123 and X and spawned two sequels. The first of which was pretty good and the second was wtf.

It's not the best game in the series but it's a good return to form after what we got from 12. At least it tries to be Final Fantasy.

Final Fantasy IV

It's just a good game. Will add more to this later.

Power Rankings:
1. VI
2. VII
3. IX
4. X
5. XIII
6. IV
7. VIII
8. XII
9. V
10. I
12. III
13. II
14 XV






settingsOptions
There are 26 Replies

Good:
I (PSX remake)
IV
VI
VII
IX

Mediocre:
I (original)
V
VIII
XII

Poor:
II
X

In my humble opinion, naturally.

Posted September 14th by Cruinn-Annuin

I'd like to see some reasoning for your humble opinion.

Posted September 14th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

The remake of I is a retrofitted codification of Final Fantasy aesthetic and design. As such, I think that it is a great example of what Final Fantasy is in general.

IV and VI are just very solid entries in general. Both have wonderful character designs, great story and also introduced design elements such as Active Time Battle, QTEs and Junctioning that were refined and became central elements of gameplay in later entries.

VII is a daring and fresh take on the series with a dope aesthetic and one of the most memorable stories.

IX is a poignant and powerful return to earlier aesthetic elements and well fleshed-out archetypes. It feels (to me, at least), like the closing of a circle and the end of an era.

The original I is kinda clunky and archaic, almost to be expected of a series finding it's first step.

V had promise, but I think it became too bogged down in the Job system. The story was also a little trite and seemed to play too much on earlier tropes.

VIII was even more daring than VII, but I think they went too far. The Junction and Para-Magic system felt sterile and impersonal. I was not nearly as entranced by the character designs as I was with VII. Many of the characters either dress like idiots (Zell) or stereotypes (Irving).

XII had so much promise and fucked it all up with what I found to be a relatively unmemorable main story, shitty main character and absolutely pointless License Board. The aesthetic is one of my favorite examples in the entire series, the game is expansive as hell, and the Gambit system is not as bad as some people say. However, the things that it does fuck up are so central to the design that I don't find it as compelling as it should have been.

II suffered from a plainly broken combat/leveling system. Nearly unplayable.

X offended my sensibilities in almost every conceivable way. I found the aesthetic to be vomit-inducing, the main character to look and act like a retard, the gameplay to be bland and the leveling system to be nitpicky instead of flexible.

Posted September 14th by Cruinn-Annuin

I've only ever played FFTA and a decent chunk of VII I think. I owned Crystal Chronicles on the GameCube and never played it and I own XV but haven't played it either (yet). FFTA was fun because it was very Fire Emblem-like for me. Playing it so often I maintained a good strategy.

VII I played for maybe 30+ hours and something in my real life got in the way of my time so I had to stop playing it. When I finally was ready to get back into it, I had largely forgotten many parts of the game. I figured that when I was ready I'd start over at some point.

They are games I'd like to play. From recommendations I've been told to play VI, VII, VIII, IX, XII, and XIII.

Posted September 14th by Fox Forever

X offended my sensibilities in almost every conceivable way. I found the aesthetic to be vomit-inducing, the main character to look and act like a retard, the gameplay to be bland and the leveling system to be nitpicky instead of flexible.

How far did you actually get into it before you decided this?

When FFX first came out it was considered one of the best-looking games of all time. I guess it doesn't help if you don't like the art style, but the character art style is the same in X as it is in VIII, 12, 13, XV. I'll concede that Tidus is an acquired taste and that James Arnold Taylor is a questionable choice for the role. And I'll even concede that his outfit looks ridiculous. The game play can be made better, and the sphere grid is wonderful. It's just a shame that they used it in such an easy game.



I figured you'd at least like this track.

Edited September 14th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

How far did you actually get into it before you decided this?


Some amount of hours. I can't say how long, as it was so long ago. It was, however, the only Final Fantasy game that I started and then felt no need to finish.

Posted September 14th by Cruinn-Annuin

Some amount of hours.

I guess I meant how far into the story.

Well aside from X it seems we largely agree.

Edited September 14th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

VII I played for maybe 30+ hours and something in my real life got in the way of my time so I had to stop playing it. When I finally was ready to get back into it, I had largely forgotten many parts of the game. I figured that when I was ready I'd start over at some point.

I've never beaten it either, but obviously I know the whole plot since the game is old enough to drink even in the US which has stiff drinking laws. We should play it at the same time maybe.

Of the games you have the nod to play, I suggest VIII because that's where I started.

Edited September 14th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

I guess I meant how far into the story.


I honestly don't remember.

Posted September 14th by Cruinn-Annuin

listed in numerical order within each tier bc I'm not sure about the finer points and can't really fuss over it atm

top:
V
VI
VII
IX

high-mid:
IV

mid:
I, MQ

low:
II
X
XV

undefined:
III

in my totally-not-humble opinion, which I'll probably elaborate on when I have a chance later

Posted September 14th by Pirate_Ninja

Oof. Hard to tell because I love almost all of the games so much (even the ones that I think are ultimately not that strong of games overall). So it's hard to say exactly. But I guess I would go with this, of the ones I have played:

Top Tier:

VI - This, to me, is as near to a perfect JRPG that ever graced the SNES. I am constantly rotating between VI and Chrono Trigger for my favorite RPG/Super Nintendo game period. I love the story. I love look. I love the score so much. There are a lot of characters and I don't love all of them, but I love the majority of them. On top of that, I really appreciate that they, mostly, all have their own sidequest that is totally optional and actually adds something to the overall experience. One thing the PS1-on FFs do super poorly is sidequests. Chocobo breeding/racing, finding random treasure around the world, ultimate weapon building, dodging lightning, monster hunting - they might all have various mileage of fun, but they add nothing to the overall experience really. The character-driven sidequests of VI really allow you to get to know the characters better, and gives many a chance to shine in a game where you might not ultimately use Gau a whole lot. I also really like the way that they constantly break up the group so that you have to actually strategize your team build-up. This is a thing in other FFs (sans PS2 era FFs where you can swap them out mid-battle), but I really found that having to use most characters and really think about how I want my multiple teams to be constructed really went far in making me like the teams. I appreciate the way it forced me as a player to experiment with team builds, while also giving each character their own unique abilities that correspond to their character traits. (I like when the "jobs" system is built into the characters.)

VII - I know it's super trendy to bash VII at this point because it has long been heralded as one of the greatest RPGs in video game history, but I don't think that's without reason. In many ways, it expands upon elements that VI did so well. Individual character abilities that give them their own unique addition to a party while also allowing for player customization through the materia system actually strikes a pretty solid balance. I'm not someone super into total customization when it comes to narrative-driven games. VII does ok with its sidequests, but it's a bit of a mixed bag. There are some that are really interesting and add to the game, but then there's breeding and racing chocobos which is tedious as fuck, not fun at all, and takes away focus during a critical part of the game's story, so it feels a bit odd. VII might have my overall favorite cast (I never understood the "Cloud is emo" argument or whatever. I always thought that reputation came from things outside the actual game itself. Advent Children certainly didn't help any.) It has my favorite World theme, and my favorite Weapons fights. And, ya know, for the time it was nice to get away a bit from that tried-and-true fantasy setting.

IX - A return to its roots was very much welcome, but it does kind of get a little too simplified for its own good. I also wish that they had allowed for more team customization. I might be mis-remembering this (I last played it two or three years ago), but I don't think you ever exceed four characters available to you until late Disc 3. That said, I am a sucker for effectively working "jobs" into characters which IX does super well. And I love this cast so much, even if I do get a tad tired sometimes of the antics of Steiner. My favorite part of the game is when they essentially remove Dagger from the party, forcing you to make due without a true healer/white mage. (I really like when they force you to adapt.) I'm also just super into the aesthetic. Ultimately, though, I think the lack of a strong antagonist hurts it a bit more and puts it *just* behind VI or VII for me.

Mid-Tier

IV - To me, IV marks the "true" start of FF. Admittedly, this is likely because it is the first FF I ever actually played (even if I didn't finish it). I love the characters. I really enjoy the jobs being integrated into the narrative to fit each character. While I don't always want the game to force my party make-up, I understand why it happens in IV and I don't hate it at all in this game. I don't ultimately have that much to say about it, other than that so many things I come to expect in a Final Fantasy, or that I love about Final Fantasy, I generally find I trace back to IV.

VIII - I tend to love this game more than most, and it is perhaps my favorite in the franchise, but the Junction system - as interesting an idea as it is on paper - just doesn't quite work out super well in execution. Having to Draw magic from enemies really disrupts the flow of battle. And god, GFs are pretty busted in the game and really hurt the general feel of boss battles in particular. I love the cast so much, and I appreciate that they also do that thing where they break up the group so you have to consider the team make up. However, the problem with trying to maximize player customization with the character builds is that it sort of takes away the individual, unique elements of each character and creates incentive to just use who you like right off the bat rather than experimentation. I also don't really like how limit breaks work in this one. I think this is probably one where if I'm being honest, as an overall game, I should rank it lower than I do, but I love the characters, the story, and score, and the world just too much to not think better of it than it maybe deserves.

XII - I don't really care that much about the world, or the characters, and I'm still not sure I really even remember what the story is despite playing the game twice. Part of the problem is having a main protagonist with little to no actual bearing on the events of the game. (I kind of feel like most characters don't really either, but I can't really remember. Played it last two years ago.) The thing I really love about the game, however, is combat. I haaaated it the first time I played it, but upon my replay, I really came to enjoy the change in format from the previous installments. I love the older style ATB battles. I don't find them boring. But the more action-oriented system was really fun, in my opinion. That alone made me enjoy doing the sidequests of hunting monsters.

V - I really enjoyed this game, and I loved being able to make anyone any class. And I remember liking the story and characters quite a bit! But there are too many classes that you basically have to just keep replaying the game to really experiment with in a way that is actually fun and productive.

Bottom Tier

I - I mean, I know it's hard to hate on the original, as it really set the stage for everything the series would become. And obviously the technical limitations of the NES dictated what it could do or be. I don't really enjoy brutally difficult games, and I am not really into the more D&D style of the original, that relies a bit more on my imagination.

II - The leveling system was infuriating to me, even if I appreciate the attempt to do something different. I got halfway through the game before it just became a mindless grind to try and beat a certain boss and I gave up.

X - Look, I appreciate so many elements of this game, and I don't hate the cast or the world or the aesthetic or even the protagonist. And I appreciate what this game did to bring new players into the franchise. But this is basically Final Fantasy on Easy Mode, and the series hasn't exactly been known for being that tough in the first place. I think the lack of a world map really hurts it, and it all feels too linear. I enjoy the sphere grid, but even that winds up frustrating to me. It makes it seem like you can customize characters, but you ultimately can't until really late in the game. I don't think it balances customization with guided elements super well (although I do like the jobs-worked-into-characters thing again). And I really, really don't like being able to swap characters mid-battle in a true turn-based battle system.

Worst of the Worst

X-2 - I enjoy the combat system, and the team, but I need more than three characters, please. And I don't want to be playing what effectively feels like Final Fantasy Arcade.

XIII - Generally like the characters. Don't care about the world. Still don't really know what the story is. Linearity is not inherently a problem, but like X before it, it just feels too linear for its own good. And it is worse than X in that it is linear forEVER.

Posted September 14th by Jet Presto

X-2 - I enjoy the combat system, and the team, but I need more than three characters, please. And I don't want to be playing what effectively feels like Final Fantasy Arcade.

If I bothered to rank this game it would be in my Borderline section. I beat it and I enjoyed doing so.

Jet, what did you think of the music in X-2? I think it's sorely underrated.








Edited September 14th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

We should play it at the same time maybe.

I'd be up for that. Not sure if you're looking to play real soon or what. I may just wait for the switch version to come out.

Posted September 14th by Fox Forever

I wasn't really into the soundtrack for X-2.

Posted September 14th by Jet Presto

Ffx 2 soundtrack was poo

Posted September 14th by Brandy

Honestly, while I've PLAYED a bunch of Final Fantasy games, I haven't FINISHED a whole lot of them. As for the rankings of the ones I'm at least semi-familiar with...

1. Final Fantasy Tactics. This is the first FF game that I played, and I loved the hell out of it. This is the game that got me into SRPGs, and I thought it had a great story.

2. Final Fantasy X. Pretty sure this was my second or third FF game, and I loved almost everything about it, from the characters to the world building.

3. Final Fantasy IV. One of my favorite games in the series. The only reason that this isn't higher is because it's not as pretty as the others.

4. Final Fantasy VI. Played this one pretty recently, actually, and it's a great game. Didn't know about some of the secrets, like with Cid and the fish (being intentionally vague, just in case anyone hasn't played it yet), but while I was a bit upset about it, when I found out that it could have ended differently, I honestly thought that the result I got was more impactful. Same with Shadow.

5. Final Fantasy Tactics Advance. Not anywhere near as good as Advance, but it's still a fun and interesting game.

6. Final Fantasy VII. One of the games that I still haven't gotten around to finishing. Mostly because it's been around for so long and because it's so popular that I already know pretty much everything that's going to happen in it, taking a lot of the fun out of it. At any rate, the bits of it that I've played have been pretty interesting, but I didn't play it back when it first came out, so I don't have the nostalgia to help me see past the ugly polygons everywhere.

7. Final Fantasy I. Used to have a NES, when I was a kid, and I liked playing this game. Didn't manage to beat it, until I replayed it a few years ago, but despite the simplicity, it's a pretty fun game.

8. FFX-2. Didn't manage to actually finish this game, for whatever reason. It was a while back, so I don't remember what that reason WAS. Might have had something come up, might have gotten some games that I was more interested in, or something else. I vaguely remember enjoying it, though.

9. Final Fantasy XII. Another game that I didn't finish, for some reason. I think I quit after getting to a prison in the desert, or something? Honestly, I'm pretty sure I just lost interest in this one. It was an okay game, but kind of bland.

10. Final Fantasy II. Played the GBA version of this just a little while ago, actually, and I don't really think it deserves the flak it gets. Admittedly, it's not exactly the strong point in the series, but I didn't think it was a BAD game.

11. Final Fantasy VIII. This one just couldn't keep my attention. It had some interesting ideas, but I had other things that I'd rather do.

12. Dirge of . It looked pretty cool, when I found it. It was not.

Posted September 14th by Axem Great Water

more later, but

X-2 - I enjoy the combat system, and the team, but I need more than three characters, please.
how about FOUR then hahahafuckxv


Didn't know about some of the secrets, like with Cid and the fish (being intentionally vague, just in case anyone hasn't played it yet)
at first I misread this entry as VII and spent about a minute trying to remember what you were talking about

...then I read ahead a little and noticed you were talking about VI, lol. Good inclusion - I didn't realize the "wrong" way was possible until I saw someone else do it and was all OH WHAT

Posted September 14th by Pirate_Ninja

It seems almost everyone agrees that VI, IX and VII are the upper echelon. It's no wonder that Square keeps re-releasing them while neglecting VIII.

Also nice Tifa avatar PN.

Edited September 15th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Just bought XV because I found a cheap used copy. Not sure I'll play it any time soon, since I'm still replaying Ni no Kuni: Wrath of the White Witch, but that is probably next on the agenda.

Posted September 15th by Jet Presto

Surprised Ni No Kuni 1 doesn't have a re-release on PS4 yet.

Posted September 15th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

Also nice Tifa avatar PN.
tyty

I'm guessing you're talking about the one I made from this (full size is real big if you open it in another tab):



I thought it looked real nice when I saw it one day


she also appears (with Krile and Celes) in this one I made from an Opera Omnia screenshot (so actually official art), but it's a little bit simpler, lol:



Posted September 15th by Pirate_Ninja

Just goes to show you how great FF6 could look on 3ds or switch.

Posted September 15th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

the titles in each tier are in no particular order:

top tier
- vi
- VII
-IX

Upper-mid
- IV
- V
- XV

Lower-mid

- VIII
- X
- XII

Bottom
- I
- II
- III
- XIII

I don't see why any of them as flat out irrideemabke or devoid of worth. All are are very technically proficiaht fir their respective eras.

I feel a bit guilty put the NES trilogy where it is, it isn't really their fault, they're products of their time. XIII though really let me down after all that hype. It looks great, has terrific music, axted good, its all-round well produced but the writing and gameplay leave so much to he desired,

My issues with both VIII and X stem a lot from their battle systems, the former is simultaneously tedious had yet easy to break. The latter is just generally annoying, the system wants you to use and swap out multiple party members and yet it won't share EXP unless you go through the rigmarole of swapping everyone in and out to keep things even, on top of that you then have to swap in the right characters to actually take out enemies in a timely fashion. In the case of XII, it was the first in the franchise to radically change how its battle system worked and I admit feeling a little put out by that. I also found managing character growth to be rather confusing. My current replay with The Zodiac Age is proving better than my first time though so my mind could change..

IV was one of the first I actually beat !the 3D version) and is the perfect introduction to the franchise. All the classic tropes are here but the characters and the journeys make it shine with so many stand out scenes. V's job system is fun to customise and yet so simple and I would call it a great way to follow up IV in the way that it transitions you into a growth system even more under your control. I was surprised as to how much I enjoyed it. I was rather burned by XIII and avoided getting myself sucked into Square's hype cycle and avoided most of the trailers. The renaming of Versus XIII into XV made me even more cynical. But, by the end of it all. I felt very satisfied and emotionally invested. The plot itself is certainly badly told, with so much vital content stuck in spin-off media or DLC (free and paid). I got use to the battle system though it could still do with sone work. However, the world and characters really won me over. After XIII's xorridors, this was a breath of fresh air, though open world games arw often overdone nowadays, XV more than proved it was the right direction for this franchise (despite the third act taking a turn back into XIII land). The core cast have great rapport and I was genuinely invested in them despite the faults of the story they were stuck in.

As for top picks, i don't feel there's much more I can add that hasn't a'ready bern said. VI, VII and usually rank high in things like this!


Posted September 17th by Gigashadow

V
the most underrated entry imo, largely propelled by the customization aspect of its job system. Having the ability to determine my own party makeup is always appealing to me, especially when I'm not sacrificing the charm of having actual characters with personalities and plot relevance (see: DQ9). There's even a bit of added appeal and personality in each character having unique costume sprites for every job. The playable cast appealed to me a lot, and I actually got into the emotional impact of Galuf sacrificing himself to save the rest of the party. Krile is a charming treasure (and cutest white mage ever) and yet I'd never even heard of her until I sought this game out. And on top of all that you get Gilgamesh!

VI
honestly, just read all the other praise already given. It's fantastic and pretty much everyone knows that. Though I will say that the idea of Terra as the heroine/main character never really resonated with me for some reason. Thanks to all the party shuffling and teambuilding freedom, I never really felt like there was a "main character" per se (though I can understand picking her if you "need" one). Personally, I always felt more invested in Locke, Celes, and the Figaro bros.

VII
not the "omg incredible greatest game of all time" but it was definitely a great one, for pretty well-documented reasons. I'm not totally sure whether I prefer VI or VII since there's a pretty major generational shift and they don't have the same feel to them. Also taking a moment to point out that Sabin suplexing a train is a whole big thing (and rightfully so, as if you don't suplex the Phantom Train then you're playing the game wrong), but nobody talks about Tifa suplexing a 50-foot-tall combat mech.

IX
it's already been praised here, and deservedly so. Not my favorite cast, honestly, but the game itself was a real treat.

high-mid

IV
kinda awkwardly placed on its own tier here, but I didn't like it quite as much as the ones above...but it's absolutely better than the next few. The plot and characters were really enjoyable (bonus shoutout to the Elemental Lords/Fiends/whatever), but I do find it kinda annoying how often you have temporary party members.

mid

I
the original version suffers from dated mechanics and stuff (really love buying potions one at a time), but the Dawn of Souls version made the base game feel a bit too easy thanks to its "normalized" magic system. Still a cool game to look back on either way, though your personal tastes are definitely going to play a big part in whether you can enjoy the NES version.

MQ
the adopted stepchild of the series, Mystic Quest is simpler than a typical FF with a more limited scope, and notably easier as well. But it's a fun little game with a tight soundtrack and some cool elements not found elsewhere (the action-adventure elements of traveling the world, visible damage on monsters).

low

II
maaaaan, fuck this game. The story is a nice step up from the first game and I appreciate that there you have actual characters with real consequences (as opposed to "choose four generic silent puppets"). But they also decided to throw enemy balance out the window and completely breaks your leveling and character progression. It basically begs you to cheese out a load of stupid battles where you spam magic and beat on your own party just so you can handle the actual challenges ahead. Here's a game that could use an actual ground-up remake, not just a coat of HD polish.

X
played X once, didn't finish because I got excessively bored around the time I got an airship.

didn't use aeons much, didn't have fun with the revolving-door let-me-see-who-I-should-use battle system. Disliked about half the playable cast, didn't really enjoy or care about the story (no doubt in part because I didn't give a shit about Tidus or Yuna). I didn't like the sorta-customizable-ish character building of the sphere grid - I'd rather have either role-dedicated characters (FF1, FF4, DQ8) or deeply-customizable characters (FF5, DQ6, BD), not FFX's awkward middle ground. Overall it felt like being led from point A to point B on a quest I didn't care about, using a mediocre cast to fight boring battles.


XV
a big-budget shitshow that you shouldn't play unless you like beautiful games with unrealized dreams of grandeur. It's also frustratingly popular among people with shitty taste (in RPGs, at least). It's nice to look at, has some good ideas, does a nice job with the "bros on a road trip" vibe, and has a lot of open roaming with side content. But the controls are poorly-designed, the combat is stupid, some of the mechanics are ill-conceived, and the plot is horrible. I went into it with lowered expectations and no hype (only played it at release because my brother bought it), and was disappointed nonetheless. It wanted to be a great epic and it could have been, but it fell far short in most of the ways that mattered.

[...]

the unpredictable part of this whole question, of course, is that you're approaching it from the perspective of someone new to the series, who presumably has no investment or predetermined sense of what a Final Fantasy "should be." One of my main issues with the game is that it's a godawful representation of the series - aside from some names and monster designs, it has little in common with the earlier games I enjoyed. You'd have more freedom to judge the game as a standalone experience.

(a standalone experience with a single playable character (who's kinda tedious), a limited supporting cast, poorly-optimized controls, frustrating design choices, a terrible story that skips around and seems to expect you to watch a prequel movie, predictable "twists," and the worst love story I've ever experienced, feeling painfully forced and ill-developed between you and an utterly boring fiancé)

[...]

don't get me wrong - I still put a lot of time into it, and there are definitely things to enjoy. It was never so bad that I considered quitting, and I don't regret playing it or anything. What you're hearing there is a combination of frustration toward the disappointing parts of the game, and toward the people who praise it. I like both turn-based and action combat, so I don't mind that they shifted away from the old games' style in that sense. But I found 15's version of action combat to be incredibly clunky and unsatisfying, and that's probably the worst place to go wrong imo. Good gameplay and bad story would be better than bad gameplay and good story (sadly, 15 was "mediocre gameplay and bad story" imo). And then right after I finished 15 I started the Nier Automata demo and was all "fuck yes squenix THIS is you making fun action combat I'm totally getting this when it comes out" and both the gameplay and story were way more enjoyable (without some ridiculous massive multimedia PR hype campaign).


undefined

III
I played a bit of it and it seemed like it might be okay, but I needed to change jobs for something and I didn't feel like leveling them up and just kinda went to play something else and never got back to it. Not against trying it again sometime because I would like to see the rest, but I haven't made the commitment to do it yet. So III gets its own little "didn't finish it so idk" tier that's kinda off to the side of the others.

Posted September 18th by Pirate_Ninja

As much as I dislike the game, it's hard to hate this theme:



Posted September 18th by I killed Mufasa
I killed Mufasa
long live the king

tbh it's much easier to appreciate when I'm listening to it here on its own, not distracted by combat or other game sounds

Posted September 18th by Pirate_Ninja
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