FINAL FANTASY XV
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Final Fantasy XV is an action RPG developed by Square Enix and is not connected to the previous installments of the series.
The story takes place in a world of Eos. Noctis Lucis Caelum, the heir of the Lucis Empire throne sets out on a quest with his comrades in order to recover a stolen magical gem the theft of which sparks a global conflict between all the nations in Eos.
The combat system resembles the same one featured in Final Fantasy Type-0 but is heavily modified. There is no option to control any of the four main protagonists apart from Noctis himself, yet it is possible to command your teammates. It is possible for the players to use vehicles such as tanks or robots or summon beings that differ in rank based on their size. There are no battle-specific battle screens in FFXV.
Magic is also present in the game. By consuming the power of natural elements from their sources, Noctis is able to cast spells. The Protagonists have the ability called Link Form which allows for contextual attacks.
The main emphasis is put on the road trip with your friends. FFXV features a massive open world which can be freely explored. Dynamic day-night cycle and weather systems are also present.
System requirements for PlayStation 4
System requirements for PC
System requirements for Xbox One
Where to buy
FINAL FANTASY XV reviews and comments
After falling in love with FF7, I imagine this one at least would be cool, but I was wrong. Firstly, even with a good premise, the story just doesn't get you. Most of it, with my eight hours of gameplay, was told by boring flashback cutscenes. The dialog doesn't help much, mostly cuz the characters weren't interesting enough.
If the gameplay was good, I'd beat it, but it's not. I had to play it on my keyboard because the game doesn't recognize the DualSense or Xbox Controller - And even if it recognizes, it is not smooth at all. Block, attack, run, and use "powers" feels so strange and the combo with your companions feels gimmick. Another thing that got me pissed was the car. You use it many times and it is boring asf. Either driving or not. All of it is bad. There is no even point to detail it. The open world isn't inviting also.
Anyway, I hope the other FFs are better like FF7.
Its history is incredible. The graphics are fantastic. The characters are one of a kind.
One of those games that will make you laugh and cry.
Amazing and one of the best games of the last generation.
That's not to say FFXV has a horrible story. The story is fine, but presented in the most confusing way possible. The writers intended Kingsglaive (the FFXV film) to be watched prior to playing the game. It fleshes out the world and gives a lot of important background information on the city Insomnia and the world of Eos. The movie is absolutely mandatory to watch before playing if you want to understand the story, but it's pretty good. My only complaint is that it wasn't included with the game and that I had to watch it elsewhere.
Even with the movie, however, there's multiple spots in the game where the cast attains knowledge offscreen, or a plot point is explained to you via text on a loading screen, or everyone except the player understands why they have to visit dead kings' tombs and slay gods. A few extra lines of dialogue could have cleared up why you found yourself sidetracked from fighting the empire so often. There's also a tacked on dialogue system that destroys the pacing of some important encounters.
The game suffers because of its open world. Music starts and stops at odd places, dialogue lines are often cut short when you walk into a quest area, procedural lipsync looks awkward, the fullscreen "Quest Completed" UI flies across the screen at the most inapropriate times, and NPC's sometimes stand in the way of the camera.
Chapter 1-8 comprise of the open-world. The story doesn't have much of a focus, and you mostly stumble upon a couple gods and tombs while trying to figure out how to reach Altissa. During this section, they really should have forced you to acquire all of the Royal Arms for story reasons. Once you do reach Altissa, however, the game feels much more focused and polished. Chapter 13 features solo gameplay that heavily departs from the rest of the game. The game should have been hitting its stride at about this point, but instead it strips away your party and your abilities for a few hours. I disliked this, but the game more than makes up for it with its final chapter. It's flashy, challenging, and brings both the gameplay and story to a crescendo. At some point there is a timeskip to a wartorn world, but you're unable to explore it in any capacity which feels like a missed opportunity.
The cast is what carries this game. Gladio, Prompto, Ignis, and Noctis all have stellar voice actors and great chemistry. Banter while on the road, during and after battle, and in the downtime at camp helps give the game character. The animation and models of each character are also well done. These only get better from Chapter 8 onwards.
From a technical standpoint, the game looks great and runs surprisingly well on my dated hardware. 7.1 surround audio works and sounds greata. There were some lighting issues where things would be way too dark, especially in Prompto's photographs. He snaps these regularly during your travels for scrapbooking, and they are mostly procedural.
From a gameplay perspective, its flashy but ultimately unsatisfying. You get very little control over Noctis' actions, with only three buttons used for combat: "B" for attack, "X" for defend, and "Y" for Warp. If you don't worry too much about the lack of depth, you can still enjoy warping around and hitting link-attacks with your bros. Equipment, skills, and skill trees are even less satisfying, but Magic is the worst offender. You craft your spells by combining three elements (Lightning, Fire, Ice). I expected to be able to mix elements together to make new spells, but Thunder, Fire, and Blizzard are the only things you can make.
If gameplay footage and trailers seem appealing to you, you'll probably enjoy FFXV. It does an excellent job of capturing the "road trip with the boys" feeling as advertised. I'd recommend skipping most sidequests and focusing on the story. It helps keep the pacing of the story on track, and you'll never feel overpowered during story quests. Definitely watch Kingsglaive before playing, and don't expect super deep gameplay.
Four Bros riding giant chickens across this weird fantasy sci fi half-open world filled with creative wildlife, and enemies. It’s a fucking weird one but it’s doing something unique. The combat and RPG mechanics are not explained well, but become more enjoyable once you get the feel for the game... but they still aren’t that good.
Great: The monsters, wildlife and enemies are very creative and fun.
Good: The goofy aesthetic and world building is entertaining and original.
Fine: The story has some over the top fun moments once it picks up, but it’s also very hard to follow, and there are slow sections throughout, and sometimes the dialogue/writing is awful (probably due to translation), so overall it’s fine. The combat takes like 8 hours before it’s any good because the game doesn’t explain things well and it’s weird, but once you understand it then it’s actually reasonable and it looks sweet, although it’s not very challenging and it gets repetitive by the end of the game.
Bad: The game does a bad job at the beginning explaining the game mechanics. It’s awkward to pick things up or talk to people. Side quests are very lame, a lot of generic fetch quests. Boss fights/action sequences are often lame from a gameplay perspective.
Awful: Facial animations. The story and gameplay pacing is poor, especially at the start, to much driving or running around. The god damn load times are so frequent and so fucking long.
Journal Style Review:
4 bros on a road trip! I get the sense that I’m going to be confused by the story a lot. Also very long load times.
Side rant: I hate when fancy editions of games give you extra dlc weapons and items to start. It’s fucking stupid and wrecks the natural progression. I don’t want to use them. This game is so confusing to start that it was hard to tell what was an extra and what is original. I was using a stupidly overpowered sword for the beginning and it wrecks the combat.
Not a strong start to this game. Pretty boring. RPGs often have a slow start since it takes a while to explain the game mechanics and set up the world so I’m not completely disheartened. But it still wasn’t a great opening hour or so. A lot of running around.
The graphics look like they were good four years ago in some areas and just average in others. They are still fine now but not special. The monsters are the best early part of the game. Early on there has already been a couple cool ones. I hope there is a lot of variety in monsters. Idk if the combat will end up being that good though. It seems like it might be too simple perhaps.
Very confusing start to this game storyline wise and game mechanics wise. I’m wondering if I’ve missed things because it feels like the game thinks I should understand what’s going on with the plot but I have no fucking clue. So many fetch quests to start. Very boring. I’m 2 hours in, I’ll give this another hour or so at least but if it doesn’t get better then I think I’m done.
Its getting a bit better. The game finally threw a bit of combat in the mix. I’m getting a slightly better understanding of the gameplay loop as well. Right now I’m planning to mostly mainline the main storyline quests. If side quests seem interesting here and there I will give them a chance but so far I have seen nothing that suggests the side quests will be entertaining or necessary from a story or gameplay/upgrades perspective.
I haven't played this game stoned yet... but I have a strong feeling this game will be better stoned.
And the stoned session begins. It’s good. It makes it better for sure.
Facial animations are absolutely awful.
This game is weird. The car aspect is weird. This game is like half open world. Very slow load times. And too much driving from place to place. But I’m at least liking the combat and the world they have created a bit more. Pretty great enemies so far though. The animals and daemons and military creations are all sweet and fun to fight. I’m pretty confident I’ll give it at least 10 hours. It’s interested me enough for at least 10 hours.
Very dumb find the frogs quest. Too hard to see. Not fun. The game does a very poor job from a quality of life aspect. But still the strength is in the wildlife and enemies.
The night cycles come way too often. It’s a nuisance.
Combat is slightly growing on me. But I’m also getting more annoyed at how long it takes to get to places. It takes too long to drive around and the night cycle forces you to do it more often than I’d like.
Second stoned session begins. And it begins with a great new character Ardyn. I’m liking his ridiculous vibe.
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again probably but FUCK these load times are so slow.
Okay that titan mission was cool. Not that much actual gameplay but cool nonetheless.
This game gets waaay better when stoned. I really should only be playing this game stoned. I’m finding a new sober game.
Riding around on the birds is hilarious and way better than driving.
Okay this main storyline stretch has been pretty great so far. I’m for sure going to finish this game. It’s convinced me of that much. It has something to offer once you can actually understand what type of game this is. What the vibe is. How to play to enjoy it the most.
That medusa fight was pretty great.
Are you kidding me! A giant wizard looking motherfucker in the sky throws his staff at the enemy base out of nowhere? I loved it. I need more of that and the titan in this game. And the chickens. Love the chickens.
Pretty solid session from like the 7 till 11 hour mark. The best it’s been so far. If this trend continues it will climb the ranks.
Finished chapter 7. The last few chapters have been pretty good. But again I’m going to try to mostly play this game stoned. It’s so much more fun when stoned.
The Venice city is kind of boring and difficult to get around in. The leviathan fight wasn’t very good. Fighting a giant monster like that should be a lot cooler than it was. I’m still barely able to understand what’s happening story wise.
I just completed chapter 11. And while I’m still liking it more than I originally thought I would. It’s getting a bit too slow paced again. It’s losing a bit of the steam it had building. I thought this would at least get to nier automata levels (mid tier B+, severely overrated but still has some goodness). I’m still sort of liking the aesthetic and weird style to the game, but there are so many load screens and a lot of walking and talking and driving. The combat is fun when it actually gets going. The set piece action scenes are pretty bad from a gameplay perspective.
This story is so ridiculous and poorly written but I’ve just accepted that. Now I’m embracing it. It’s better. Need to be stoned though.... Jesus Christ it’s bad at times though.
Some of these cutscenes are way too long.
Also worth noting I’ve literally never died in this game yet. I don’t think I will die once.
Spooky demon power plant factory chapter was pretty good. I still don’t know what’s going on with the story.
Okay the final Insomnia chapter is pretty sweet. They saved the best chapter for the last major one I think. It’s pretty cool and has a lot of intense fights. I did it under leveled because the side quests suck so it was quite hard.
Epic fights leading up to the final Ardyn fight and then that fight was just okay. As soon as you go super god mode you just mash buttons with the super abilities.
Final cutscenes were actually pretty good. And then the Florence version of stand by me is a nice song. And then the cutscenes kept going again. And they were not bad. The ending was not bad. It did leave me feeling like this game was epic. Because it was epic. It was just so bad and awkward in a lot of other areas. Epic world though. If this game had actual combat, not the fake combat they have, then it could have been sweet. If it was like jedi fallen order quality combat this game would have been unreal. I literally didn’t die the entire game... I failed a time trial section once because I wasn’t paying attention.
Closing thought. This game has made me excited to play the FFVII remake someday. Because I think it has better combat.
Here is how my opinion on the game changed. Total game time was about 22-23 hours. First 4 or 5 hours I was on the edge of giving up, it wasn’t doing it for me. It started to get better from hours 7 ish to 12 ish it’s probably at its peak at hour 12, the time when the game is a bit more open world and you get to ride the chickens was the best. Rather than continuing to get better as I had hoped, It stayed around the same enjoyment level for the remainder and occasionally dipped down lower again during slow sections. There should have been more use of the giant chickens. The final 2 or 3 hours were a solid closer. In the end it’s still a low tier B+.
Final Score: B+
Final Fantasy XV takes place on the world of Eos, you play as Prince Noctis as he journey across Eos with his best friends on a journey of self discovery, while at the same time fighting against evil that threatens to consume their world. Overall the story is fantastic, it's straight forward, thrilling, engaging, and emotional. While the game's open world style kills the momentum of the story at times, it's well done all the same. A couple plot holes here and there, but nothing that took the enjoyment out for me.
The game's greatest strength is it's characters. Noctis, Prompto, Ignis, and Gladiolus are some of my favorite video game characters. Their chemistry heightened the enjoyment of the game, made the story more emotional, and remained consistently entertaining throughout my hours of playing. Not to mention their character arcs are great, from the story to the game's DLC's focusing on each individual character. Watching them grow from teenagers to protectors of Eos was fantastic.
The massive world of Eos was a ton of fun to explore. I understand that the open world aspect is pretty new to Final Fantasy, but I loved exploring it. Driving from point A to point B was beautiful and relaxing as you got to take in the sights, enjoy character banter, and listen to music. The driving mechanics are pretty easy, which makes doing all these things all the better. The graphics are beautiful, with only minor issues along to way, overall it's one of my favorite open worlds in gaming.
On top of just driving around there's plenty of side missions and bounty quests to take up between plot points. They get pretty repetitive after awhile though, most of the side quests feel the same, but are pretty easy to just do as you traverse the map. Bounty missions are fantastic though, the world of Eos is home to a massive variety of monsters, all unique as far as looks and challenges. Some smaller than you, others as tall as mountains, either way it's one of the more exciting parts of the game.
Combat is pretty different, but overall easy to grasp. The game is easy in comparison to the Final Fantasy VII Remake, but I enjoyed it. It's perfect for newcomers as well as longtime fans, they even mention that when you start up the game. But even though it's easy to grasp, there's still a level of challenge as you progress. While it's easy to level up, you may even feel over leveled at times, there's always a newer, tougher challenge for you to face if you look.
Overall I just love this game, it's one of my favorite RPG's of all time. For long time Final Fantasy fans, I can see elements of it being underwhelming, but I loved damn near every minute of it.
Played on the PS4