PAX West 2016 Impressions: World of Final Fantasy
We managed to get a sneak peak at the new upcoming game, World of Final Fantasy, with the developers from Square Enix at PAX West this year. World of Final Fantasy is a RPG that takes place in the land of Grymoire where players will take the characters, Reynn and Lann, on an adventure to discover their past.
We were invited to participate in a 90 minute hands-on demo on the PlayStation 4. At the start of the demo, the two main characters are shown accompanied by their fox looking friend Tama. While exploring, I was able to switch between chibi-style to their normal size form called “Jiant”. There were many engaging cutscenes with some of the funniest humor I have seen in a Final Fantasy game yet.
Compared to Ni No Kuni or the Pokemon series, the game felt like a mash-up of both worlds. There were noticeable features inspired by both games. The style of gameplay was very similar to Ni No Kuni with a presence of the Pokemon series. In World of Final Fantasy, players will capture and befriend classic Final Fantasy monsters, known as mirages. Even with all the similarities, this game has its own unique features that aren’t found in any of the current Final Fantasy titles. As the demo progressed, I was able to capture more mirages to add to my party. Each mirage will have their own unique special abilities and skill trees.
Visually, the game is very cutesy and undenyingly charming. I absolutely love the chibi-style art. There’s something very special about seeing iconic Final Fantasy creatures reimagined in their chibi form. The battle system for World of Final Fantasy gives a great sense of nostalgia as well. The game gives the player a choice between an active time battle system (ATB) or the classic turn based mechanic we are familiar with older Final Fantasy titles. Players can input commands directly or switch to classic mode for a more retro Final Fantasy feel on the fly.
Throughout the demo, my party consisted of some mandragoras and small goblins. I liked that there was the option to name each of the mirages I caught. One interesting feature about this game is the new stacking mechanic it incorporates into the battle system. Players can stack the different mirages on top of Reynn or Lann to increase their stats or execute more powerful attacks depending on the amount that are stacked. For instance, stacking two mirages will grant an HP boost and if they both know the spell fire, then they’ll be able to cast the higher level spell, Fira. Reynn and Lann do not always need to be stacked and can form a party with four mirages instead. Overall I found it better to stay stacked.
World of Final Fantasy is one of those games I am looking forward to playing, especially since the game is expected to take over 100 hours to complete. That’s pretty long and not to mention there are over 200 mirages for the player to capture. Compared to Ni No Kuni or the Pokemon series, World of Final Fantasy incorporates features from both games, but adds their own features making it unique. Both long time fans of Final Fantasy and those that are new to the series should definitely check out this game when it’s released worldwide on October 25th for the Playstation 4 and Playstation Vita console.
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