|Review by Aristov|
||Yes, another great game, for a great series. This has to be one of the best games of the series, IMO. The story line is deeply involving, and it can keep you in suspense the whole game when you are playing. This title is definitely one of the best games on the SNES console.
With it's unique storyline, and it's cast of characters, this games easily exceeds some of the best RPG's on the SNES. This series is holding strong, as Square tries to greatly exceed that of another other RPG. They do just that with this game.
This game can get quite involving. With it's 60+ hours of game play, and the battle systems and bosses, you can spend hours and hours at this game, trying to figure out where all the items are, how to obtain them, and where all the secrets are located. This is for a perfectionist, it would probably take a non-perfectionist anywhere between 45-50 hours to complete this.
Well, onto the good stuff :
Graphics : May not be ''up to date'' as such - but the graphics in this game prove that the SNES had some good graphics. The monsters are all uniquely drawn and put into the game, and the characters all have their own distinct features and looks. They may not be worthy of Playstation 2 or X Box graphics, but they are pretty good for the SNES. The magic spells have their own looks, and even the weapons have different looks when you equip and fight with them.
Sound : Without a doubt, this has some excellent tracks from Square on it. They add to the mood of the environment, as in most games, but in this, the sound also adds mood to the characters, and the mood that they are in. Some of the tracks are meant to be dark, gloomy tracks, representing evil. While there are other tracks that represent the good side of a character. I'll leave it up to you to decide which track puts you and the characters in what sort of mood.
Replay Ability : This game has an excellent value of Replay Ability. With many different items, spells, and secrets to be had in this, you can spend hours trying to find them. If you don't find them all the first time, you can play again and again to try and master the game, and become one of the best at it.
Game Play : Ah, the best part of any game. This title has excellent game play.
The cast of characters help to add to the setting of the era, and put you in a mood to do what must be done. They are all obtained at different points in the game, according to what the next - chapter we'll call it - is. This is true for any RPG, but it just seems to be at the precise moment that you know something is going to happen in this game. Helps to add suspense and anxiety to the gamer because they will want to play to see what the story has in store for them, and if they will get that character that they want on their team.
There are different types of sections in the game, they help to develop the story. You could call them chapters or quests or whatever, but they help to push the story along and help you to figure it out as you play. It does not jump ahead in the story and reveal what you don't already know.
The story has many events that are twisted in someway,
that turns the game around. This keeps the game at a suspenseful level, for the player to be waiting for what happens next.
The story is deep and involving, and it has a lot of twists and turns in it, but if you pay attention to the clues and hints that people give you to what is going on, you should be able to follow along with the story.
The controls and what to do in battle are easy enough to figure out. Just be patient and take your time when choosing your battle options, and look for the enemies weaknesses to be sure of what is effective, and what is not so effective.
Gathering items and all the secrets can be a pain. Some of the later 'elite' weapons can only be found, and are pretty hard to obtain. You'll want to get them though, as they are the best in the game, and will help you a lot through the rest of your journey.
The secrets are not so easily hidden away, but, they can be a pain at some times also. Just take the time to look for them, and you should find them without any major time consumption.
To rent or buy? : Well, if you are just starting to get into Role Playing Games, I would recommend that you rent it first. Do not rely solely on reviews. Play the game for yourself, if you like it, you can find out if you want to buy it or not then.
If you are an RPG fanatic like I am, I would recommend buying it right out. It is well worth the money, and the time you will put into playing it will be worth the money also. You don't want to buy anything that you won't play.
Overall : In closing, this is definitely one of the best RPG's for the SNES. I would recommend it to any RPG fan or any type of game lover, for that matter. A true RPG from Square. Hoping to see a lot of other RPG's coming out with a cast of characters, a storyline, and an overall great game as this one was.
|Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10|
|Review by Blackjack4x|
||Final Fantasy 2 is, in my opinion, one of the top five SNES games out now. It has neither the depth of Final Fantasy 3 or the cool attacks of Chrono Trigger, but it's just as entertaining as those games in its own way. This follows the format of a standard RPG: you start out with a main character (Cecil), and throughout your quest characters join you and leave you. They also all gain experience points and thus energy and new attacks. There are three main worlds in the game, the Overworld, the Underworld and the Moon. The storyline is flawless, with many twists that you didn't see coming. This game is for one player only.
Not bad for early SNES. They're simplistic, but bright. At the same time, they stay true to the Final Fantasy theme.
The sound in this game is near perfect. The music is some of the best ever heard in a video game. The sound effets are decent as well.
Again, near perfect. The battle menus are simple and easy to use. Up to five characters can be in your party at once. Speaking of the characters, every one of them is different, with their own personality: Cecil, the noble hero, Kain, the Dragoon who is Cecil's friend and whose loyalty and integrity is tested, Edward, who must face his fears and forget about the past, Edge, the wise cracking ninja prince, Cid, the cranky inventor, Rydia, the girl with the ability to use black magic, Rosa, who can use white magic, Yang, the karate man with a concerned wife, and FuSoYa, the moon man with lots of knowlegde. Each area of the game is well done, with tons of atmosphere and feeling. The game is not especially long, certainly not compared to Final Fantasy 3, but I feel it is long enough. The difficulty is perfect: not too hard or easy. The one negative I found in this game is the same one that plagues Final Fantasy 3: the random battles begin to drive you insane after a while. There's nothing more tiring that walking through a long cave, and fighting tough enemies every three seconds. Besides this, the gameplay is flawless. Another nice touch is the fact that your spaceship is a giant whale.
The game is just fun to finish many times, but there are incentives to try again anyway. You can find and beat all the Call Monsters, after which Rydia can summon them in battle. You can try to find the elusive Pink Tail, found only on the Moon, from the also-elusive Pink Puff. You can explore all the areas and find all items and weapons, which is not required to finish the game. And, of course, you can try to max out your levels.
This game is worth whatever you pay for it. It's truly a masterpiece, and it has a charm like no other game. If you like RPGs, you really have to have this game.
|Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10|
|Review by BrakZero|
||Final Fantasy 4 (renamed as Final Fantasy 2 in the US) is recognized as one of the greatest classic RPGs of all time. It packed an amazing storyline, a great soundtrack, and simple yet enjoyable gameplay. It completely revolutionized the whole role-playing industry because it was the first RPG to have a very good, twisting storyline, as if it were a movie.
The graphics in the game were not the best, but theres an explanation behind it. This game was originally going to be released for the original Nintendo. However, a decision was made that FF4 would come out for the Super Nintendo rather than the NES. Square desperately tried to update the graphics as much as possible, but they didnt have that much time. So the graphics got better, but not as much as they hoped for. Yet the graphics were quite good compared to the other SNES games at the time. The sprites can only put their heads down to show sadness, and could walk. The environments werent bursting with detail, but they still had nice, healthy amounts of detail put into them. The enemies of the game looked nice and sharp.
Overall, the graphics would be considered bad by current standards, but of course this is about 10 years later. Also, graphics dont make the game, they could only make the experience a bit better. Dont let the graphics affect your thoughts of the game.
Final Fantasy 2/4 had one of the best, if not the best soundtracks for the Super Nintendo. The music in the game made the storyline so much better, and more emotional. Think about it. Think of an RPG youve played with a really good story. Now, think about an emotional part from that RPG. Now, picture that emotional part without the music playing. Isnt it dull? The music makes everything so much better. All the music from the game fits extremely well into all the situations of the story.
Now, Final Fantasy 2/4 had lots of great things, but the story is what shines the most. It had an amazing storyline with kept players sucked in. To me, the story of FF2/4 is still one of the best storylines Ive seen in a role-playing game. It starts out with Cecil, the main character. Cecil is the commander of the airship force in Baron, a strong ruling country. He and his crew went to steal the crystal of water from a town called Mysidia. Cecil was sent by orders from the king, but didnt understand the kings objective. He questions the king upon his return. However, the king is a freak and fires Cecil from his post. From there, Cecil and his friend Kain go through many adventures, meeting new people. If this sounds boring to you, just try playing the game. Its full of surprising plot twists that just make you gasp and say, No way, really!? Its truly an amazing story.
The gameplay is the old traditional Final Fantasy battle system, before the big changes starting taking place. Youve got different character classes, which are predetermined and cant be changed. Each character, with his or her class, has their own abilities. For instance, a Dragoon can use the Jump command. Unfortunately, MANY abilities were taken from this easytype American version. Anyway, the battles are played traditionally... you take a swing, your enemy takes a swing, you swing again. Youve got normal attacks, special physical attacks, plus your basic white and black magic. In addition, theres also a type of Ninja magic. The ATB gauge seen in most Final Fantasy games is not visible in Final Fantasy 2/4, but its still there. Its simply invisible, because the HP numbers is taking up that room. Overall, the gameplay is simple and fun. I love it because Ive always loved that classic system, and I always will. Theres no special unique addition to the battle system, (such as Materia, Espers, Jobs, etc.) just a normal, everyday system. Yet its so fun!
I dont know WHAT I was thinking when I wrote my last review for this game, because I stated that there wasnt much to replay. Thats totally wrong. There are a TON of hidden items in FF2/4! More than any other FF, thats for sure! There are a very high number of weapons, armor, and items that can only be obtained from enemy battles. The numbers for these items are often 1/64, so it ensures a ton of battling to do this. People trying to master every Final Fantasy game almost always have the most trouble with this one, because of these items. Surely if youre even somewhat familiar with FF2/4, youve heard of the Pink Tail. Thats a famous rare item in this game, in which players only have a 1/64 chance of encountering an enemy called a Pink Puff. When they finally find this enemy, they have a 1/64 chance of getting a Pink Tail from them. Do the math. People spend hours upon hours upon hours searching for this item. It wont keep you bored, I guarantee it.
This game is lots of fun to play, for two main reasons. The first is that the story is so good, so its pretty fun to get involved and come across surprise twists, and all that stuff. Ya know. The other reason is those rare items. Well, that may not be fun for some people, but its a lot of fun for me. You should see me when I get a new rare item... err, never mind. The bottom line is that this game is fun. Very fun.
Final Fantasy II/IV is a true old school RPG. Just because the graphics arent like Final Fantasy IX doesnt mean a game sucks. It holds a fun, traditional battle system, an amazing soundtrack, and best of all, an excellent story. If you claim to be a hardcore Final Fantasy gamer or a Final Fantasy Freak who hasnt played this game, stop lying about yourself. If you didnt play FF2/4, youre just another new-schooler. This is a must-play game for any RPG fan, especially those that love old 16-bit ones.
|Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10|
|Review by EPoetker|
||What's so great about Final Fantasy 2(4 Jap,) you ask? Only everything. Look at almost any RPG in today's market. All of its core features probably had their origin in the epic quest of Cecil, Rydia, Kain, and all the rest. Truly, in my mind, this was the last ''old-school'' RPG. Every one that followed it was...''innovative,'' perhaps. Interesting, surely. Fun, definitely. Better? Maybe...
GRAPHICS: This was in no way the best feature of the game. They weren't eve the best the SNES could come up with at the time. In fact, this one was originally slated to come out for the NES. When the Super NES was announced, Square scrambled to take advantage of the update, but one can still point out many glaring instances where more could have been done. The sprites(in overhead mode,) for example, were very simply done...every character had only two alternate forms of animation besides walking: A: Hanging head in shame/sadness/etc. B: Waving hand to indicate happiness/confusion/sexual orientation. The backgrounds were a little better, as they were MUCH more colorful and detailed than previous Final Fantasy efforts(where green, yellow, and blue were pretty much the predominant world map colors) and thus saves it from the bleakness that plagues many RPG overworlds today(FF7-8, anyone?)This game also had a lot of fun with Mode 7 graphical scaling and rotating once you got the chance to climb into one of those airships...easily the coolest vehicle in any RPG I've seen so far. I mean, once you saw five airships flying in formation at the beginning, you automatically knew that this game would be cool. (1991, remember.) We also had ''cinema sequences'' back then...but the memory was so limiting that they mostly involves characters jumping up and down as another part of the
STORY was revealed. Y'know, I never really thought about playing an RPG for the story until I played through this game. Actually, I still don't, which is why I can be perfectly happy with Final Fantasy Tactics, a game with a story so incomprehensible that inevitably you just nod your head and accept it. There's no head-nodding here...actually, you're more likely to lean it back and laugh your posterior off the first time you hear ''spoony'' used as a viable insult. Or when you hear ''ACHOO!'' used as a battle cry. As far as ''wacky'' goes, FF2 takes the adjective to a whole new level in its translation. Strangely, however, this actually makes the game better. Not to mention the fact that they cut out all the extra ''dramatic'' or ''deep'' dialogue from the japanese version. Let's put it this way: If I wanted to depress myself, I'd go play the REAL FF2(for NES, not SNES.) I suppose that it's all an immature desire on my part to see HAPPY endings. More likely, it's because it's a whole lot easier to depress people than it is to amuse them or(God forbid) make them SMILE at the fact that yes, the good guys DID somehow manage to make it through that life-threatening situation unharmed! If it's a fight between depressing realism and dramatic fantasy, the latter wins hands down(did I buy this game to get another variation on existentialism? Sorry, Sartre & Camus, but I want to have FUN!) But the story is even better than a simple tale; it manages to throw the perfectly timed plot twists and startling revelations at just the right times, and a depressing moment is almost always a setup for another of high triumph. Forgiveness, redemption, and an ending that manages to give a real sense of fulfillment are all here, which is why I still think that this is the best story the FF writers have yet been able to come up with. There, I managed to give a long overview on the story without mentioning a single pertinent in-game event. Eat your heart out, spoiler people!
MUSIC: Good stuff. Real good stuff. Quite possibly the best synthesized stuff you can listen to on a long, epic quest which takes you almost everywhere. (Note: Final Fantasy Tactics is exempted from the following rant.) I'm thinking it was a mistake to give Nobuo something other than a MIDI synthesizer to belt out his tunes on. FF7 was the beginning of the BGM quality slide, and FF8 topped it(I'm optimistic on 9.) Today, game developers seem to set the game music on the back burner, if they have it at all. Or even worse, they just stick in one well-made, popular ''theme song''(Eyes on Me) and delegate all the rest of the music to ''background'' status, perhaps offering a suggestion that the guy try to ''set the mood.''
In FF2, the music IS the mood. And unlike the forgettable beats in many other of today's titles, you actually REMEMBER those tunes after listening to them as little as two or three times. Except that these compositions aren't the annoying drumbeat that passes for music today, they actually transport you back to the place where heroes were...heroes. Where traveling the world trying to do good isn't considered trite. Where...ahh, there's too many to list. But my big notables are the title screen music(that classic FF octave-traveler now has a new addition that comes when you listen long enough) and the Big Whale theme. I REALLY wish that musicians would go for that kind of inspiring stuff a little more often.
GAMEPLAY: Ah, this is where it's at, isn't it? I'll keep it simple. Every character has their own unique weapons and attacks. Customizability is virtually nil. And there is NO switching characters-if the game has you with a certain lineup, you can bet it's for a good reason! Big new features are here...the loved and hated ''Active Time'' battle mode, for one. No time to plan your strategy! Choose a move now, slow witted American! (Note: They also took quite a few extra moves out of this one. A quick glance at the FAQs on the Japanese version shows that those moves kinda sucked anyway. They also made the ''heal'' potion heal everything, whereas in the Jap version you had to spend money on a myraid of different items to cure all the different status conditions that would crop up. Hardcore FF-fanboys say that ''dumbing down'' the game this way was inexcusable. I would ask these people to remember that the Dragon Quest series, which basically involved wandering around for about 100 hours getting experience, was always much more popular in Japan than Final Fantasy. Somehow the word ''fun'' just doesn't sink in as far there as it does here.)In any case, the setup was basically done so that you'd have the right characters present at the right points in the story. Oh, but did I mention that you could have up to FIVE, rather than just four or (yeech!)three characters to plan your strategy? Yes, that's another reason why I like it. This was also the first American-released FF to have summon spells...except these ones didn't take two minutes to complete! Yippee! What else...you generally don't have to do the MAD LEVELING UP that you were forced to go through in previous FF games; in fact I would strongly advise against it, since almost all of those leveled-up characters will almost certainly leave the party at some point. Stop that nervous shaking and just play through, nice and easy-like. Goooooood...that's it. Overall? This is a masterpiece that you're not likely to see except in heavily diluted(read: improved) forms. Think of it as the best history lesson you'll ever take. On ROM or cartridge format, it's ALL good.
Nintendo Logic: (possible spoilers)Swinging a sword in the air and having it somehow kill your enemy has been a staple of RPG logic for more than a decade. I'm a little less clear on walking around on the surface of the moon in non-vacuum compliant armor without immediately having your heads explode. But hey, if Bahamut can live there, you can too! And I also like how the benevolent king of Baron expresses his gratitude at being freed by immediately attacking you(he hurts, too.) Thanks a lot, old chum, if you weren't already a ghost, I'd beat you over the head with one of Cid's wrenches! But I've generally moved into the realm of accepting a certain degree of wackiness in my games anyway. You should too. Trying to make sense out of these games is a fruitless enterprise. Do it enough and you may end up greeting everyone you meet with ''Lali-ho!'' (Oh yes, I do love the dwarfs.)
|Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10|
|Review by Fallen One|
||For my first review ever, I've decided to review Final Fantasy II, otherwise known as Final Fantasy IV Easytype, one of my all time favorite games. I've enjoyed most of Squaresoft's Final Fantasy series, and while some of them didn't live up to my expectations (FFVIII and Mystic Quest come to mind), this one definitely did. It definitely deserves a 10 with its awesome storyline and easy, yet fun gameplay.
Graphics (6/10)- Although the rest of the games aspects are good, the graphics, unfortunately, are not. Since this was one of the first RPGs on the SNES, don't expect too much; compared to games like FFVI and Chrono Trigger, the graphics are only adequate. The graphics aren't all that bad, though; some summons and spell effects look very cool. I don't play a game for its graphics, so unless you really care about good graphics, they shouldn't bother you too much.
Music/Sound (8/10)- The music is definitely some of the best music I've ever heard in the FF series. Some of my favorites are songs like the Baron Castle theme, Red Wings, etc. The music is very well done, and definitely better than some FFs such as VIII and IX. My only complaint is that a few tunes can get quite annoying. Examples include the battle theme, which is only average, and the town theme, which gets very repetitive. Overall, though, the music is excellent.
The sound effects are done pretty decently, although they aren't anything that great. Pretty much your usual sound, with little sound effects to accompany your spells and normal attacks. Some summon spells sound somewhat realistic, though. The sound is good, but you'll almost forget it entirely when you begin listening to this game's beautiful melodies.
Story (9/10)- The story of Final Fantasy II is definitely one of its best parts. Cecil, the Dark Knight of the Red Wings from Baron Castle, is forced to steal a crystal from innocent magicians of Mysidia. After this attack, Cecil wonders why the King of Baron is forcing the Red Wings to commit such horrible crimes. After questioning the king's actions, Cecil is expelled from his post on the Red Wings, and is asked to deliver a package to the village Mist. Then the adventure starts. The story sounds pretty simple, but later on there are a bunch of twists in the plot to make it more interesting, which I won't include in this review; play the game yourself! Most characters are very interesting and memorable. The story definitely lived up to my expectations.
I only have one complaint about the storyline. The dialogue, while still fairly easy to understand, is very choppy and incomplete in some areas. I myself have not played Final Fantasy IV Hardtype, so I cannot compare the two, but from what I've heard, the Hardtype translation is much better. I don't think it was necessary for Nintendo/Square to chop off so much dialogue; the translation could have been done much better.
Gameplay (10/10)- Now, I don't care how much better the gameplay might've been in Hardtype- the gameplay here is just plain fun. This, in fact, is the ONLY FF ever to include a party of five members, which made battles much more fun and interesting. Each member has his own class, like Kain the Dragoon and Cecil the Dark Knight. The classes system balances the game out so that no character can be the same as the other- each has his own weaknesses/strengths. For example, Kain cannot cast magic, but is an excellent attacker, while Rosa can cast White Magic, but isn't skilled with physical attacks.
Battles in the game, though very easy, are fun to play, especially boss fights. Some bosses are challenging, some aren't, but all are fun to battle using the uniqueness of each of your five members. Overall, the game isn't very difficult at all, but is still a blast to play through.
Replay (7/10)- Many RPG's are lacking in replay value, and Final Fantasy II is no exception. However, if you missed some secrets in the game, it could always be fun to go back through and get the items you missed. Still, some of the fun is gone; you know what's going to happen in story, know what bosses you're going to fight, know what characters you're going to get, and so on. The replay value of this game is decent, but you probably wouldn't want to play through it more than a couple of times.
Buy/Rent? Ummm...rhetorical question. Although this game is pretty expensive now, if you can find a fair price for it, pick it up. You definitely won't regret it.
Overall, this game is one of the best FF games I've ever played, and one of the best games ever, period. It has a great storyline, excellent gameplay, and a fantastic soundtrack. It is my second favorite game in the series, topped only by Final Fantasy Tactics.
|Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10|