During the holidays, I lucked out and got a copy of Final Fantasy XV. (for $40 mind you) Which is the eighty millionth entry in the series, but only the fifteenth to be named with a shiny new roman numeral. Mind you, this title was initially named, “Final Fantasy Versus XIII”. Even better, the theme of the game is inspired by a great American past time; road tripping!! What the fuck SquareEnix, stop smoking the blue crystal, cuz it sure as hell ain’t magical!!!
Anyhoo, XV is a journey involving a young prince (Noctus, AKA Super EMO prince) and his three “bros”. Ingnis, the smartypants and iron chef wannabe. Gladio, the soft-hearted macho man and Auron’s bastard son (not really) and Prompto the social butterfly/wimpy kid.
Just remember, guns don’t kill people, Prompto’s bad selfies do.
As a team, the “four friends” work well together, combat is super simple to play and chain attacks. Each of them, complement with Noctus’ movements and comment during the battle, to keep things fresh. This is great, that is until you realize, you can HOLD either the attack or defend button and never have a problem…which serves no challenge to season vets of RPGs and Final Fantasy. However, enemies are either serious over-powered or one hit wonders. Thankfully, the visuals and solid boss fights make up for mediocre gameplay.
Magic kind of gets skimped on and the whole system of using status, time and white magic is condensed into added effects. Using fire, ice and thunder you mix and add potentcy to the elements by mixing in items and other elements. Sadly, the system seems very basic and looks like it could’ve much more exciting. On the up sides, summons do return, even though there are only a few, they are MARVELOUS to watch!!
Story-wise, I’m not impressed with it thus far. Which is mainly due to the massive amount of fetch quests and hunts you have to do in order to level up. It reminds me a bit of Fallout 4 and MGSV, how the quests, looting and exploration were so distracting that you really stopped caring about the main objective. Don’t get me wrong, this is WORLDS better than Final Fantasy XIII’s linear gameplay. At this point things are picking up, but it hasn’t reeled me in like Noctis’ fishing skills. (Yep, there’s fishing AND IT’S FUN!)
In terms of exploration, the world in FFXV is BEAUTIFUL!! Monsters are immersed into the world and naturally behave in it until the party gets into a battle with them. Exploring takes to different paths, first is using the Regalis (or the Noctus-mobile) which you can drive to ANY destination when you have access to the area. Initially, seems pretty sweet cruising and enjoying the view; that is until remember that sitting in a car is BORING AS FUCK. Let alone, a virtual car ride. Thankfully, once you’ve reached each area, you can fast travel!!! Then there is using chocobos (FF horses) or good ol’ hoofing it. I recommend you use chocobos more often, as they do give you a chance to truly enjoy the design of the world. (Something I learned to appreciate during my playthrough of The Witcher 3. Horses add depth…NO BULLSHIT!)
Towns are replaced with rest stops that pretty much just serve as outposts to recouperate, do side quests and hunt missions. Honestly, this may seem disappointing at first. That is, until you get to the bigger cities, which add a little spice to the world you’re in. Personal advice, do the side quests if you need curatives and the hunts for money and EXP otherwise, they are a worthless grind with no story or anything else. (Save a few exceptions)
In a nutshell, my experiences thus far, with well over 40+ hours in; if you are patient enough to sit throught the lengthy car rides. Then Final Fantasy XV is worth your time. Overall, it’s an improvement over the previous titles in terms of things to do and see.
INSERT MASSIVE IN-GAME AD!!!!!!!!!
CUP-O-NOOOOODLEE!!!! (Which are actually REALLY gross!!!)
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