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Review by !.ACA.!
  An unforgettable cast, an epic story, and an incredible musical score.

Final Fantasy VI is worlds apart from most games, setting the standards for roleplaying games. Leaving such an impression on the gaming world is not easily accomplished, but Final Fantasy VI makes it look so easy.

From the opening minutes, Final Fantasy VI brings the gamer into its world. Final Fantasy VIs story, one of mystery and intrigue, grasps the gamer right from the start of the game. Coupled with luscious graphics and amazing music, Final Fantasy VIs opening is truly memorable as two armed soldiers lead an enslaved girl through the bitter winter snowfield, in attempts to acquire a frozen Esper. Just how does this frozen Esper directly relate to this enslaved girls past, present, and future? The answers are found throughout the game. And up until the games close, youll ponder these same questions, as Square does a remarkable job at keeping Final Fantasy VIs plot intriguing through the entire game.

This is only possible because of Final Fantasy VIs cast of characters, both playable and not. Final Fantasy VI forces the gamer to empathize with each hero and to hate each villain.

There are many characters that will join you along the way, and each one has a unique story to tell. Meet Edgar, ruler of a kingdom, whose fate was determined by the flip of a coin. Cyan, a noble warrior and loyal father, whose own kingdom he takes the ultimate responsibility for. Celes, a general in the evil empires army. Locke, a thief after the worlds greatest treasures. In addition to these characters, there are many, many more that each hold a vital responsibility in the worlds fate.

Throughout the game, each characters story is unfolded through touching music and powerful dialog. Final Fantasy VIs music, composed by Nobuo Uematsu, is possibly the greatest musical score in video game history. Tracks such as Awakening and Aria de Mezzo Carattere highlight some of the best works from the soundtrack. There are over fifty tracks found throughout the game, and nearly each one is absolutely incredible.

Visually, Final Fantasy VI is quite a sight to see. The characters are drawn nicely, as are the enemies. The battle backgrounds are done extraordinarily well, with much detail paid attention to little aspects such as stones, trees, or walls. And the backgrounds are plentiful, which means you will not tire of them right awaysomething that cannot be said for the towns, unfortunately.

Nearly each town looks very similar. The town graphics are far overused, which is strange considering how much work went into other graphics, such as the amazing world map.

Like most RPGs, Final Fantasy VI has turn-based battles resulting from random encounters. Luckily, however, the gameplay of these battles is not overly monotonous. The fact that the battles are not a chore can be directly attributed to the characters themselves.

Each character has a special set of skills, which only that character can use. A ninja, Shadow, for example, can throw weapons at his enemies. Setzer, a gambler, plays the slots to determine his special attack. Sabin, your incredibly powerful fighter, has Street Fighter style attacks that need to be input with a button combination.

It is in this manner that youll be fighting most of the game. Instead of mashing your buttons, choosing Attack each turn, youll actually have some fun using each characters unique skills. Battles can be in active time, or they can be in a semi-active time. In active time, battles never stop, forcing you to think on your feet. However, in the semi-active time, the battle time stops to let you choose what magic spells or items you wish to use. Both are fun, and it is nice to have an option between the two. And after the battles, of course, youll be equipping the latest armor, weapons, accessories, and summons.

Most games are not without flaws, however, and one of Final Fantasy VIs most glaring flaws is the characters walk speed. The characters walk unbelievably slow, which causes an incredible amount of frustration. Thankfully, this can be remedied by equipping an item that allows your characters to run.

Another flaw, which is inexcusable, comes in the character attributes. For some mysterious reason due to a glitch in the game, standard Evasion is not calculated during battle, but is instead decided by Magic Evasion. How this obvious mistake escaped testing is completely unbelievable. There are a few other minor glitches, but they are negligible and can actually be fun if exploited.

Even with these small problems, Final Fantasy VI is one of the most powerful RPGs in gaming history. Its stellar music and story make up for any minute shortcomings in its gameplay. Final Fantasy VI features many hidden characters, plenty of side quests, and many memorable moments. It isnt hard to fall in love with the heroes, which helps set Final Fantasy VI apart from the competition.

To write anymore would spoil the many plots and plot twists found throughout Final Fantasy VI.

A + Presentation
Everything looks very finished. Aside from a few glitches, Final Fantasy VI is nearly perfect.

B + Graphics
An extremely strong set of graphics allow the game to set the standard for so many games.

A + Audio
Final Fantasy VI has possibly the best soundtrack in gaming history. Unlike games with only three or four memorable songs, Final Fantasy VI has over fifty. Sound effects are average at best, but this is overlooked by the stunning music. Nobuo Uematsu sets the standard for RPG music.

A Gameplay
A fun battle system, with little room for improvement.

A + Value
With a compelling plot and so many hidden secrets to find, Final Fantasy VI will last for a long time.

Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10
Review by AKMoose
  I've been reading over some of the Reader Reviews here, and I've been thinking "Hey, I can do this too." So I've decided to start with my favorite game, Final Fantasy VI, 3 in the US, of course. I was in third grade when I first played the game. My best friend and I, after conquering FFIV, were looking for a new challenge. We didn't make the mistake of renting this one first. (More on that in the FF2 review when I get around to writing it.) From the opening scene with the Magitek Armor trudging through the snow I was hooked.

Graphics: 9 out of 10. I thought the graphics on this game were great. The characters looked good, and had some funny little actions throughout the game. The monsters, bosses, and espers looked good too. The towns and caves were great also. A point off for the world map, though.

Sound: 10 out of 10. I didn't know who the heck Nobuo Uemastu was until a few years after I first played the game, but I remember my friend and I holding a tape recorder up to the TV to record songs off the game. The songs (such as Shadow's theme, Zozo, etc... still get stuck in my head to this day. True, there are a few songs that aren't very good, but they are far outweighed by the good ones. The sound effects are good, too.

Story: 10 out of 10. One of the major reasons it's my favorite game. You start out as Terra, who has little memory of what she's been through in her iife. You start out as her, Wedge, and Vicks trudging through Narshe in your Magitek. By the time the game's over, you've had death, betrayal, love, destruction, etc. Not to mention all the optional things you can find. This is an excellent story, full of twists and turns. And there's not even a main character!

Control/Gameplay: 10 out of 10. Once you get the swing of the controls you'll have no problem doing what you need to do. From whizzing around the world in the airship to fighting monsters to walking (or running if you've got Sprint Shoes) through town, nothing's really hard. And the game is FUN FUN FUN! You get to ride mine carts, fly airships and Chocobos, battle all kinds of monsters, fight in a Colliseum, seek out hidden items, etc. I like the Esper system, it's not too powerful because you can only summon as Esper once a turn. And everyone being able to learn magic helps. The special abilites are great. You've got to level up to get some (Blitzes), collect items for other (Tools), and fight certain monsters for others (Rages and Lores.)

Replay Value: 10 out of 10. Like any good RPG, you're going to want to play through it more than once to get what you've missed. Things like what you say during dinner with Emporer Gesthal getting you more items, you can get valuable things earlier on, plus since you've already been through it once you know what you're doing and don't end up pulling out your hair figuring anything out. As someone else pointed out, nearly everything in the World Of Ruin is optional, so you can have a good time messing around, retrieving party members, collecting espers, fighting in the Colliseum, collecting Lores and Rages, etc. The game NEVER gets old.

Overall Score: 9.8, rounds to 10.

Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10
Review by Behreandto
  Graphics: 9.5/10
Music & Sound: 10/10
Control: 10/10
Plot & Characters: 10/10

Fun Factor: 10/10
Overall: 9.9/10
By this rating system it would be a 10 (rounding of course)

Hey, I'm not giving this a 10 becasue of the story either, becasue it still kicks the crap out of FF7 and FF8 anyday. You want further explaination? E-mail me cause i'm not finished with this...believe me. Why would the critics be so biased comparing FF8 to FF3? Why do you see a lot of people commenting that FF3 is the best? It should be more than obvious if you open your narrow (graphically subdued) minds.

Graphics: When FF3 was the only RPG on the SNES and when nothing else came out to rival it, it was the best. Simply, up front and straight to the point. Exceptional graphics don't define an RPG's greatness, but they sure helped and FF3 was no exception. People expecting more got what they wanted which was FF7 and FF8, games that sacrificed what was defined by this game (all the ones before it) and Chrono Trigger (which is a tie with FF3 in terms of plot). Back to FF3... The reason the graphics weren't given a 10 was because they were more dreary in color than what followed it. Despite the color pallete not being the highest mark, I'd have to say the graphics are astounding for this being a 16 RPG. Chrono trigger's were very good because they dropped the high detail for more interesting animation, but anyway.... When you look back at all the predecessors to FF3 you'll see why. The detail is very very well done for being hand drawn and not all this computer rendering that shows up so (how could you miss it-everyone praises it?) well in 7 and 8. The bosses and enemies are very well drawn and detailed and have concepts that are carried over to later incarnations of the series (bombs, cactrots, malboros, etc.) as well as the summons which aren't all a bunch of graphically enhanced chumps that take forever to get the point across in a battle (which is whooping the enemy's ass). The surroundings are very well detailed, too. Towns and dungeons are amongst the largest (compare FF7's dungeon with 3's) and towns harbor more secrets than you think they would. Animation wise, this is more or less nothing new, characters have similar ways of attacking foes and the enemies die the same way and attack the same ways as they (more or less) have been in past RPG's. Spells are quite intersting, but serve the purpose they were meant for and not to satisfy the graphically hungering eyes of people who believe FF8 is all that. I'd rather endure 90 of FF3's ultima spells consequtively as opposed to 90 Bahumat Zeros and 90 Knights of the Round in FF7. The character concepts are more orignal and interesting than what's now being shown in RPG's today. You've got Gau, Mog, Kefka (who's kinda like Marilyn Manson), Cid (carry overs to later FFs and from previous ones), General Leo, Strago, Realm, Umaro, Gogo, Edgar, Shadow, all the moogles, Wedge and Vicks (carry overs to later FFs), Ultros, Chupon (carry over to later FFs), summons (carry overs to later FFs), etc., etc. In terms of originality, FF3 kills FF8 and 7 with one slice of the atmaweapon, though some concepts have become better introduced in FF3 from it's predacessors. To conclude this, the hand drawn graphics of FF3 sport much detail despite the much critisized low amount of animation everyone and their brother likes to rip on.

Music & Sound: I like this soundtrack the most out of the series because it has a more appealing variety than what came later. There's not much chance at beating the Magitek Research Facility theme, Shadow's theme, the battle and boss themes, overworld theme, AtmaWeapon's theme, Kefka's theme, Moogle town Zozo, Chocobo Veldt, Gogo's theme, Kefka's Tower, Fantaic's Tower, Floating Continent....etc. Even some of the more depressing cinical tunes sound interesting and involving adding heat to the situation at hand.

Control: Your standard issue Square/RPG/Final Fantasy-type controls. Most people attack the fact that you can move in only 4 directions, as if it really mattered. In other words this is a creative excuse to attack the game and make it sound worse than it is (which it is not). Does it seriously matter if you can stand in one spot and spin 360 degrees when all you need to do is go from point A to point B? I think not. Are you gonna miss something in this game by not being able to move diagonally? Does it matter that you can run or walk in an RPG when you'd still get into a fight between location A and B? God, who cares? Honestly? Oh yeah, the ones who've been pampered with all the perks. Battle-wise, it's all turn based and all good. It may have menus that so many people dislike, but I'd rather have a list of choices and things I'd like to choose from. Plus, most characters have a signature move, something totally lacking in FF8 (too bad limit breaks don't count because I'm talking permanent signature moves not something that appears when you get your ass wallopped). Summons can only be summoned once per battle (thank god) making a heated boss fight more challenging when you have to rely on weapons and spells and not some little show of graphics that takes off more HPs than is really needed if you beef it up. The controls are just fine for this game and attacking it, is just being rather pointless. Oh yeah, and two players can play this game (during battles) so you can have one friend controlling half of the party while the other controls their half (go to config on the menu screen if you don't believe me).

Plot & Characters: I tend to agree that this has amongst all the FF games the best plot and is only rivaled by that of Chrono Trigger's and Xenogears (but they aren't FF's so disregard the comparison). I also agree that character developement is rather limited, but that depends on who you play as. Strago isn't as pointless as believed and neither is Realm or Umaro (Umaro helps you a ton in the Fanatic's Tower). Every character has a reason to join you with the exception of Gog and Umaro and they all have a story behind them that backs up why they are with you. Typically it all centers around the tyranous empire of greed that seeks power to enslave the world. Towns are pillaged, taken over, and some (like Narshe) actually fight back rather than just take it. The plot starts out small and leads to some of the most globally challenging situations. You'll meet Duane and Katarin, survivors who carry the responsibility of giving birth to a child in a world that seems to have no future. You'll encounter the people of Zozo, the thieves and liars, you'll see people without homes and people trying to get by in the meekest of situations, you'll meet people trying to wade through debt and people trying to get over the deaths of friends (Shadow, Locke, Setzer) and struggles for hope on a more widespread scale than in FF7 and FF8. The death of Aeris was just a highlight to FF7 in terms of an impact in the story, but FF3 kept a thorough consistancy of a world that just keptgoing wrong. You'll see things that'll surprise you (Terra's past) you'll witness greed and tyranny that lead to full blown insanity. And i also want to mention that FF3 has the tightest sequence of events in the first half of the game than FF7 and FF8 could have dreamed of. I'm not saying that as a bias, I'm saying it because it more or less is true. What better way to end the first half of the game with a shwodown on a floating island that results in a chaotic climax of unparalleled interest. The game may be long and the second half of the game may seem loose in terms of events, but all this computes to one of the best endings Square has come up with. FF's sucked...FF8's was an acid trip and more of a show than something that would explain what happened to each individual character. How long is the ending? Long. Enjoying and makes you ask less questions than the sequels that follow it after seing it.

Fun Factor: This is where it's at for me. I've always come back to this and Chrono Trigger because they just keep giving even if you saw it all. I keep playing FF3 to master what I haven't gotton or to see if I can do better. For example, first time I played it, I got creamed on the Floating Continent (Level 30) and now, I've found that wasting more time results in better payoffs. By getting each character to level 99 at the end of the first half, I've found it much more enjoyable to play throught the rest of the game. People critisize the fact that you could turn your characters into gods in FF 3 and 7, but how could you do that? By playing hour after hour, by doing uneccessary things that get you ahead and on top! If you want challenge, then play through Mt. Zozo rather at level 12 rather than at level 32. You reap what you sew and that's a law in almost every FF game made ot date. Argue that, and you just are stuck on the pretty graphics and media hype. Where are the puzzles and the challenges? Right here baby. The amount of puzzles in here kill the #'s in FF7 and 8 and make it more challenging by throwing in insane amounts of repetitive battles in the midsts of all of it. That's your challenge, not searching out items to advance through the plot or whatever it is the others have that seems so appealing. Though I will admit, the mini-games are few here and less appealing than those in 7 but they are a lot more challenging despite the critisism people who lived off them in FF7. The colliseum is a challenge because you never know what's coming by betting items. You can fight Chupon and lose a critical item and never get it back EVER. Finally, I have to say, the final dungeon and Magitek Research Facility are amongst the most involving and challenging dungeons in FF3 compared to what came after and Kefka, still has the most maniacal and amusing laugh and attitude any villain will ever have even if he doesn't have a mammoth sword and a bunch of pumped up stats like Sephiroth, though Seph is still pretty cool. This game will keep you going beyond the 99 hour limit without any doubt (that is if you don't buy the guide). There's so much to miss that'll keep you coming back for more everry time. Buy this. It's old school gaming paradise, despite what the whiner's say. I've only scratched the surface with this, but if you're still stuck on the fact that FF8 is the best thing ever made, then you'll be finding something to complain about seeing as how you're handy dadny perks aren't necessary for this to be one of the biggest, most dedfing SNES title there with Chrono Trigger.

Strong Recommendation: Buy FF Anthologies or the classic 1994 SNES version of FF3

Overall: 9.9/10 which translates to it being a 10

Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10
Review by BHeilman
  I will be buried with this game! Here's my real rating - 14 I didn't know if this webpage would accept that rating or not!

What I love about it:

Graphics: best in SNES, by far. The backgrounds are breathtaking. The graphics for Esper calls are superb, and sometimes funny. That big cat with boxing gloves is cute! I believe that is the Stray Esper. The airship ride is fun! And I really love the graphics for the charcters and creatures! I give this a 15

Storyline: What starts out as a mysterious young woman with magical powers erupts into a fight to save the planet from a power crazed Emperor and his strange accomplise, Kefka. The story is filled with destruction, defiance, complexities, and, most of all, love! After the world is "undone", the plot is a little predictable, but the characters recoveries are intriguing. I give this a 9.

Magics: Whoever thought of Espers should be congratulated, that's by far the best concept for learning magics that I've ever seen. I Also like the fact that some magics are learned automatically, that ties in VERY well with the story! I give magic a 15!

Characters: Deep and believable. I could feel Locke's pain as Rachel died. I also had a great deal of sympathy for Cyan, his family will always be with him giving him strength. I like the way the characters develop. Terra finds love, the brothers find each other in their hearts after their parents die, Shadow's past is revealed in dreams, Celes's suicide attempt and recovery is heartfelt, and I ESPECIALLY like Kefka!! He's so funny sometimes! I give this a 12.

Battle: I believe 4 people in a battle is just right, 3 is too few, 5 too many. I like the way the menu system works and being able to configure cursor memory for a quicker battle. Although, with memory, you can cast magics or attack when you DON'T want to, gee, I've never done that! Being able to skip players is nice. I give this a 10.

Levels: There are great levels and areas for building up magics and player levels (did that make sense?) Exploring is fun in this game, and I like meeting the secret characters in levels. The Magimaster tower is STILL a pain in my side. Strago's level he does by himself is annoying but fun. And the last level what can I say, AAAAAAAHHHHH!!! Save OFTEN! Unless of course you are on level 60 or so and have a bunch of Ultimas to cast J! I give this an 11. Secrets and Replay: I have never read or heard so many rumors for a video game in my life! I'm still searching for that creature that's supposed to appear if you fight 4000 battles in the "Jurassic Park" forest after defeating all 8 dragons! It's so funny and really cool that people (especially me!) try to get all the rages and Lores and such. There are just SO VERY MANY FAQs, walkthroughs, hints, and lists for this game it's unreal! I love it! This game BEGS to be played over and over and over, I give secrets and replayability a 12.

Myth And Literary Allusion: One cannot ignore the mythical quality to the names of creatures, Espers, and even some items and armors! Mirthil, now where have I heard that before... perhaps in J.R.R. Tolkein?? I give this a 14

Unusual stuff: This is the only game I have ever seen with an Opera! Ultros is certainly unusual, he just won't go away! The creature names are beyond unique, as with all the FF games. What on Earth is an Apokrophos! I give uniqueness a 10

Last but CERTAINLY not least music!! The first time I heard the music in ZoZo I was hooked! I also love Kefka's music! Cyan's theme is wonderful, and Celes's is unforgettable! The music will live on forever... I give this a 15

The only bad thing about this game is that it has to end. Or does it... Will it not live as we all try to get everyone all the magics, rages, and find all the secrets and play it again and again and again....

Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10
Review by Bob the Almighty
  This Final Fantasy is considered the best by many die-hards. Well, not me. I am a die-hard, but FF 5 is my favorite. Anyway, it's not hard to see why everyone loves this game: It defines all that is cool...almost...well...okay...maybe that's a little over-stating it, heh. But the game rules never-the-less.

Magic is a thing of the past. A thousand years earlier it almost destroyed the entire planet. Out of the ashes, civilization picked itself back up and technology began to spread. In a world where magic once was a driving force has been changed to a world where technology is the 'modern magic.' But someone craves to unleash the horrific power of magic by use of espers (beings with the ability to use magic). However, a small rebel group (known as the Returners) fights desperately against the empire. And somewhere in between the empire and the rebels lies a woman with the gift of magic and the ability to speak with espers...Okay, so maybe it's not as melodramatic as I make it sound, but the story is well-presented and unmatched even by today. Plus Kefka is the ^coolest^ video game villain ever...a lot cooler than Sephiroth in my opinion. Sephiroth wanted to basically become a god and be in control of everything (which is kinda cool), but Kefka actually ^becomes^ a god (sorta) and wants to ^destory^ everything (which is a lot cooler than wanting to be in control). Like I said, the storyline is unmatched (except for Xenogears...maybe). I mean, Kefka...best villain ever, the cast is one of the most real and believable in video game history, and the plot is brilliantly presented.
- Overall 96% -

Remarkable. Every character has their own unique abilities which add to the gameplay. This is nice because you actually have to put thought into who is in your party since everyone is different. Of course, this makes a lot of characters more useful than others (I doubt anyone will be using a character like Relm more so than a character like Cyan). The esper system is quite nice as well. Think of it like FF7's materia system only not as cheap, hehe. You equip an esper, fight around, get MP (magic points) after a battle, when your MP gets to 100 on a particular spell, you learn that spell. However, some spells are faster learnt by different espers (example, Ifrit teaches you Fire x 10 where as Bismark teaches you Fire x 20, so you could learn Fire twice a fast by equipping Bismark than you would by equipping Ifrit). And FINALLY there are relics. Relics alter your characters performances drastically. Some give your character super-human abilities (cough, cough...Gem Box + Economizer..cough...Genji Glove + Offering) which is fun to play around with (although cheap as well). With all this elements, the gameplay is unrivaled. HOWEVER, the major downfall of this game is that it is too damn easy. It's so easy at times the game becomes a bore. Honestly, the game is just too entirely easy, and that seriously hurts the overall fun. Aside from the lack of challenge, the gameplay is - as I said - remarkable.
- Overall 75% -

(would have been a 90% or so if the game wasn't so easy)

I'll keep this short and sweet...the graphics rule. This could have been a Play Station game (the graphics look lot better than some PSX games graphics in other words). They characters look nice, the battle effects (spells and abilities) look nice, the espers look nice, the backgrounds look nice, the enemies look nice...everything looks nice!
- Overall 100% -

The music in this game is (in my opinion) the best in a game..EVER! The music is without flaw. The Opera House scene is one of the most memorable parts in video game history and the music is some of the most memorable as well. From the very beginning to the very end, the music is amazing.
- Overall 100% -

The replay is high as there is a lot (I mean A LOT) of optional side quests to do. Plus if you jumped the gun a little on the Floating Continent you might (and probably will) want to replay the game once you realized what you have done. The unique characters also help the replay. If one game you feel like using an all-out war party, you might go with Sabin, Cyan, Shadow, and Umaro as your most-used party. Another time you can mix it up with a magic party (Celes, Terra, Stargo, and umm...a fourth character), and yet another time you might want a cool abilities party (Locke, Edgar, Gau, and Setzer), etc. Then you could always teach your favorite characters all the spells, make sure Sabin/Cyan/Strago/Gau get all their abilities (well...maybe not Gau's..learning ALL those 255 or 256 rages will take a long time..), and crap like that. Then there are those who would want to replay the game just because the great story and fun. As you may have guessed, there is a lot to do in this game... Really the only thing that could keep me from constantly replaying this game is the challenge. As I said earlier, challenge is one thing this game lacks, and therefore the replay value drops with it.
- Overall 80% -

Without question, this game is a modern day work of art, but Final Fantasy 5 still is my favorite. With all the characters, abilities, relics, and so on, the game is really fun and unique...hard to believe it's been six years since I first played it. The only major thing this behemoth of a game lacks is challenge.
- Overall 97% -
Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10