The Final Fantasy 13 rant -MAJOR SPOILERS-

I finished Final fantasy 13 right after my exams so I was curious about what you can do after you defeat the final boss (LOl FF13 came out such a long time ago, too). However, I’ve been seeing this question pop up all the time on the gamefaqs or IGN board or whatever forums I happen to come across when looking up post game content which is –

Should I get this game or not?

Here’s my answer – Yes

But don’t expect it to be like Final Fantasy 7, 8, 10 or 12. Those were the ones I played and they are my favourite because… I dunno, they just were. Final Fantasy 10 was the first I played and the story and locations sucked me in. It was also EPIC. I’m sure most people may disagree with me here because I heard some people just thought it was a movie with the cutscenes and stuff. I disagree with that. I thought it was brilliant. Final Fantasy 12 was EPIC too but because it was far too epic, I forgot why I was battling the last boss in the end and they spoke too much of ye Olde English that I got lost.

PS. That trailer’s gameplay is a lie, but it shows FF13 graphics and what to expect, at the best… .actually, the quality of the video is quite bad but whatever.

Anyway, I think people hate Final Fantasy 13 for the following reasons, here is why (expect spoilers):

  1. Disappointing box art.
  2. In the very beginning, after the amazing cutscene, you are thrust into battle immediately with only two of the main characters (Lightning and Sazh). After you play through them, more characters will be introduced (Snow, Vanille, Hope etc). You are then in control of said ‘more characters’ and you play in some other area (So you play as Snow, after the brief intro with Lightning and then you play as someone else)
  3. Becuase of this, because that you are playing as other characters in other locations, you hardly see the other characters nor they do they really meet until halfway into the game, and by that time, it’s about 6 hours into the game, or more. When everyone gets together, it’s been at least 10 hours.
  4. There was a story before the Final Fantasy 13 story, which is why you feel alienated
  5. Important things are supposed to be read, appearing in the game’s archive or summthing. As you well know, if people hate reading manuals, why would they want to read said important things?
  6. This is the most important – You battle in this game. You battle all the time. You also can’t run from battles, you have to hit ‘retry’ or just try and avoid enemies
  7. There are no towns, so there are no shops. They are accessed from the save point. Oops, wait, there is one particular town, but it’s already destroyed when you get there and overrun by monsters
  8. There are no proper NPC people. And if you do, they will be afraid of you, or want to kill you (I can be positive and say 75% of NPC are soldiers, and even then, they are battle encounters)
  9. So, broadening on that point above, everything in the game will want to kill you. YOU WILL NOT FEEL THE LOVE.
  10. Every dungeon or cave is just a straight path, or some winding maze which requires you to jump or hop across until you get to the save point or a boss
  11. In the end, you are dumped in some large grassland that has some adjoining places where you just battle, kill giant tortoises, kill other giant monsters, complete quests, explore optional areas, run around, ride chocobos… and that’s basically it
  12. You can’t revisit areas, exept from the ones in said large grassland
  13. Earning money is a nightmare

Ther are plenty of negatives but don’t let me put you off. Surprisingly enough, battling is what makes Final Fantasy 13 fun, because it has an amazing battle system that is not like any other – the ATB system and Paradigm Shift. Your party can only consist of 3 people, like Final Fantasy 12, and you choose a team leader. They have ‘roles’, either Commando, Ravager, medic, synergist or sentinel or saboteur. With these roles, come various combinations of battle formations, ie, a group of paradigms, which are called paradigm decks.

So let’s say you have three attackers (two commandos and on ravager, perhaps). What happens when you get hurt? Simple, you paradigm shift a deck consisting of two attackers, while the third character in your party switches role to become a medic. And then when your medic has healed everyone, you can paradigm shift back to the ‘deck’ with the roles where all characters are attacking.  The list of paradigm decks are a lot and very interesting; the only problem is rememering whose role is what when you battle because you can have up to 5 active paradigm decks at once. Maybe you want two medics in case your party get all injured badly, and then maybe you want someone to act as a saboteur (ie, casting really evil magic on enemies, like Poison or Slow) while the others pummel enemies into submission.

You can read this in wikipedia but I’ll like to say more. Since it is active time battle (ATB), you can’t afford to waste or scrolling through commands going ‘hmm what to do what to do?’ Enemies will pound you as you wait and decide so battling is FAST, FAST FAST!

O_O Kinda getting off track here. Overall, Final fantasy 13 was an okay game. I don’t love it but I don’t hate it. The whole thing with crystals, l’Cie, fal’Cie and Cocoon is VERY imaginative and what most RPG games are lacking. The fal’Cie are gods who basically rule over everything but essentialy have the power to turn humans into their drooling slaves. It is a brilliant concept, with a brilliant fantasy-world and really pretty characters, but they were all sadly misused, especially for FF13’s case, since it was such a highly anticipated game back then. I thought and hoped it’d be more epic than FF12 but I was mistaken.

I liked the characters. They grow on you. I feel the developers concentrated more on Lightning because of her jump sequences – this might sound stupid, but I think she actually has more animations when you play as her as leader. She also has epic hair and a permanent frown. Vanille has this squeaky voice and embarrassing, suggestive noises when battling (Mmmmmm!!! Aargghhhh). Hope has this whiny emo thing going on (IMA GOING TO KEEL YOU YOU KEEL MY MOMMA BEETCH D:<<). Sazh has a bird living in his hair (I would’ve thought the baby chocobo might eat dandruff off his head or do the toilet. That, I would like to see). Fang has… er… well, Fang’s just Fang. And Snow… oh, right. Another thing I didn’t get was Snow’s relationship with Serah, Lightning’s sister. KID sister. BABY sister. Eurgh, the guy was like what, 25 (if they say he’s not, but younger, I will go SRSLY)? She was like a bloody kid and she didn’t even go up to his shoulders! She was like, what? 12 year olds or something, some rosy-cheeked, little innocent wee kid and then we had Snow hulking all over her. It was just… YUCK.

There were some moments when I seriously hated it, like when I was playing through a city called Palompum with all sorts of guards and Giant mechanised Behemoths all sent to kill me. The battles never stopped and I wanted to throw my controller and scream. Then there was this place called the ‘Vile Peaks’. It sure was Vile. The only good thing were that some places were extremely nice to look at and had such awesome names (Mah’habara, I mean, come on, what an awesome name), and other places are Nautilus City – the city of dreams and giant, smelly Chocobos with sideburns. More nice places are Sullya Springs, Taejin’s Towers… Sunleth Waterscape, Gapra Whitewood (not the underwood, that was SCARY, with the fog and panthers). Places I hated were the Faultwarrens, Palumpolum, the Fifth Ark and Mah’habara (nice name, but I hate it, sadly enough).

And here is the trailer for the upcoming game, Final Fantasy 13-2. I like the look of it already ^__^

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