Final Fantasy XV Review

Final Fantasy XV is a JRPG videogame developed and published by Square-Enix in 2016. This game was one of the latest entries in the Fabula Nova Crystallis: Final Fantasy project. The game was originally meant to be Final Fantasy Versus XIII but after years of delays, it was finally released as the fifteenth entry in the franchise.

Introduction

Final Fantasy XV features a story of both betray and brotherhood in a world that mix science fiction with fantasy. It also features an action strategy gameplay that rewards fast moves and chain combos. The script has some drawbacks because of the long development process and delays, but apart from that, the game is truly enjoyable.

Story

The story follows the journey of prince Noctis Lucis Caelum and his best friends: Ignis, Prompto, and Gladiolus. They are on a journey to meet lady Lunafreya Nox Fleuret, which is prince Noctis fiance, and childhood friend. While on their journey, Noctis and his friends hear terrible news, their homeland the kingdom of Lucis has been invaded by the hostile empire of Niflheim. His father, King Regis, his fiance lady Lunafreya and himself are presumably dead.

The story then takes place across the world of Eos, while Noctis and his friends follow the tracks of lady Lunafreya. In order to defeat the empire and reclaim his throne, the new King of Lucis will need to gain the favor of both, the gods and the ancient kings of Lucis.

This is probably the weak point of this game because most people will agree it’s incomplete. That said if you play all DLCs and watch the anime series and CGI movie you can make up a good enough story, of course, the idea is to be able to understand the whole narrative by just playing the game.

Gameplay

Unlike its predecessors, FFXV aims for action-based combat instead of a turn-based. We have one button to attack, other to evade, another one to jump, etc just like in most action games. To be efficient, it’s necessary to change our weapons during combat and try to find the enemy’s weaknesses. You will also need to use your party member’s skills to take advantage of the situation.

There are different skill trees for every aspect of the gameplay, Noctis’s skills, party skills, magic, stats, hobbies, etc. To unlock the perks in any tree you will need to obtain SP (Skill Points). SP points can obtain for leveling up, completing quests, or by practicing the different “hobbies” of each character. Hobbies are some sort of unique character skills for each of the main characters. By practicing each hobby you will gain SP as well as some special rewards depending on the hobby. For instance, Gladiolu’s hobby is “survival” which levels up when Gladiolus explores a certain distance by feet. Apart from the SP, the survival hobby allows you to obtain useful winning a battle, the higher the level of the hobby the better items you will get.

As always, I let you some of my own gameplay experiences in the game, enjoy.

Graphics/Sounds

The game looks and sounds very good, it also displays a dynamic resolution, so it will make the most of your tv. The sounds are very well made so I recommend using a headset or similar to get the full experience. Also a special mention to the soundtrack which is awesome.

If you are a veteran in the franchise or have played some games before, you may want to know there are some OST from other games as well. Apart from the original game soundtrack, you can enjoy using the Regalia radio or your mp3 player (an item available in the game) you can enjoy some themes from across all FF games, as well as the soundtrack from each DLC episode from FFXV and even some other Square-Enix games such as Tomb Raider and Nier.

Side-content

There’s a lot of stuff to do in this game besides the main story. We have the hunter quests, the easiest way to ear some guils while increasing our hunter rank. Special events with specific characters, hidden dungeons, royal weapons to unlock, minigames, etc.If you have your game fully updated you can also enjoy of some cool collaborations quests with Terra Wars and FFXiV

We also have a bunch of DLC from which some of them should have been part of the base game in my opinion. These DLCs include the Comrades standalone online mode, extra chapters for the main characters and the royal pack update.

Apart from the game content, there’s a whole media industry around this game. First, there’s the KingsGlaive CGI movie which is great, and also necessary to understand the plot. There are some anime episodes as well, in which you can see some of the early adventures of Noctis and his friends. There’s a VR fishing game, a beat’em up F2P game about king Regis as well.

Replayability

This game provides dozens of hours of gameplay and if you enjoyed the game you will want to replay it. There many quests and dungeons only avaible after completing the main storyline. You will also want to unpgrade your character with high tier equipment or even upgrade the Regalia, your loyal vehicle. Let’s not forget the chapter select mode that also works as NG+, if you feel like doing all over again from a certain point.

If you are looking for something more Japanese make sure to check Oniwalker‘s review about Star Ocean: The Last Hope. A game I’ve been trying to play for ages… and it’s still on my backlog.

Pros

  • Enjoyable gameplay
  • Great graphics
  • Amazing soundtrack
  • Beautiful brotherhood tale

Cons

  • Inconsistencies in the main story
  • Paid DLC to understand the whole story

Final Fantasy XV Review
Overall
8.2/10
8.2/10
  • Story - 7.5/10
    7.5/10
  • Gameplay - 8.5/10
    8.5/10
  • Graphics/Sound - 8.5/10
    8.5/10
  • Side Content - 8/10
    8/10
  • Replayability - 8.5/10
    8.5/10

Summary

Final Fantasy Xv is the case of an uncompleted game, due to the long period of development. Square-Enix try to fix them by releasing DLCs that help to understand the whole story, but after playing the whole thing I can ensure that a few of them (to say the least) should have been part of the base game.

That said, this is not a bad videogame by any means, it may not be the game we should have got after 10 years of development, but it is indeed a videogame both newcomers and veterans of the franchise can enjoy. Also, due to its gameplay it may be interesting for people who like action games.

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uchihasnake

Gamer, software developer and recently reviewer ;)

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