|Review by Ashley Winchester|
||Once upon a time, a Japanese software publishing company released a game that would forever change the world in its wake. Said game had a combination of elements that just could not be matched: fantastic graphics, a thought provoking, revolutionary plotline, musical delights, and even direct hit voice acting. Sadly, the messiah of gaming I speak of has yet to grace upon the RPG genre, however Final Fantasy X-2 certainly comes close.
A guaranteed success in name alone, Squares Final Fantasy X-2 is the sequel to one of the best selling PlayStation 2 games of all time (what could it possibly be?), Final Fantasy X. Set a short time after the events of the previous game conclude, X-2 seeks to tell the story of heroine Yuna and the life she lives after the unprecedented accomplishment of squelching world terrorist insect extraordinaire, Sin for good. (Yeah, I suppose other people helped her along the way). Instead of starting directly after the end of Final Fantasy X however (as some believed the Eternal Calm movie contained in Final Fantasy X International would in fact, be the intro to Final Fantasy X-2) X-2 throws the player right into the action with a tremendous teenybopper treat: a live concert starring none other thanYuna?
Its safe to say that Final Fantasy X-2 does not take place in the same world (Spira) as the previous game did. Nowhere in the Spira of Final Fantasy X could players find a constant barrage of cheerful faces, playful nemeses, and adoring fans. In the modern day, the only place to hear about Sin is in historical text books or when considering why Yuna is just so darn popular in the first place. Going beyond just a upgrade in peoples demeanors, the entire game itself is lively, whimsical, and up beat. Characters have repopulated areas which were previously ruined or forbidden, and even those in familiar territory seem to be much better off a scant two years after the events of the previous game.
Graphically, Final Fantasy X-2 excels on every level. The environments contained in the game are even more detailed than those of X, and even those from said game look even better now. Players will marvel at being able to explore old areas, previously inaccessible regions of old areas, and a plethora of new ones just itching to be investigated. Lip synching is done so precisely that it really seems as if the characters are living organisms as the game would stipulate. FMV is simply resplendent, easily going beyond even the most impressive scenes from X. One may even surmise that Square learned a thing or two in making Kingdom Hearts, as the characters now express a much more varied range of expressions, some of them being just plain goofy (no pun intended).
The game play of Final Fantasy X-2 is a huge improvement over not only X itself, but the entire series as a whole. Final Fantasy X-2 features so many innovations and so much creativity that it is only fitting to devote a section to each:
Class (Upper, Middle, LowerClothing?!)
Easily the most noticeable element of the game (literally) is the drastic new look Yuna and her cohorts, Rikku and Pain (pronounced Pine), wear. As they say however, beauty is more than skin deep and in this case, it is true-literally. Utilizing a job system similar to that of Final Fantasy V, Yuna and company can dress up in different outfits, new skills and abilities riding along in the coattails. The game assigns the three characters to specific roles at first (Yuna the gunslinger, Rikku the thief, and Pain the soldier) however after a few short battles players are introduced to the Dress Up Sphere change system. By pressing the R1 button while in battle, the window will shrink down to about a quarter of the screen and reveal the Dress Up Plate; basically a dummied down Sphere Board for lack of better explanation. The Dress Plate can be customized to the players liking, so as you obtain more job classes you can add and remove ones you want to eliminate. After choosing a class (watch out however! The battle continues; you can even observe it via the picture and picture format used to accomplish the class change) the desired character will undergo a henshin (transformation) sequence much akin to that of Sailor Moon and the end result will be a new look, new image, and new abilities. Players need not wait until battle to change classes however, as the task can be accomplished simply by choosing the correct options from the games main menu. (Sadly no henshin sequence however). Those wishing to skip the in game transformations altogether can do so via the Configure menu.
Obviously where there are transformations and skills, one will find monsters and tactics necessary to use on them. Battles have undergone a complete overhaul from the likes of Final Fantasy X. Instead of employing the modified wait battle system used in the previous game, X-2 utilizes a 100% active battle system. So active is it in fact, that should the player put down the controller they might find themselves dead: Battles happen, and they happen FAST. Although Square has yet to remove the random encounter aspect of Final Fantasy games, once the assault begins, players need to take action immediately. Final Fantasy X-2 dictates action by once again returning to the Wait bar; once this small (or large, depending on the character and/or class) bar fills up the player may take action, be it attack, special skill, use an item, or whatever else the game allows. So fast are the battles in fact, that the player may actually be able to attack an enemy while the villain is IN THE PROCESS of attacking you! It would be a gross understatement to pass off the coolness factor in slicing through monster flesh just seconds before a giant pincher is about to close in on you. Skillful exploitation of this system allows the player to delay enemy attacks or even cancel them entirely. Watch out however, should a character initiate an attack against a monster while its attacking, they may end up missing a connecting blow because the monster was at close range when Fight was initiated however has now returned to its original location.
In a move entirely new to the Final Fantasy series, combo/chain attacks are now available to the player thus giving the game a somewhat Chrono Trigger feel to it: Though each character can attack individually once their gauge fills up, players can opt to wait until two (or three) of the characters are ready for action and thus issue a string of attacks, bringing blow upon blow upon the unfortunate monster.
Another new feature is the use of critical attacks: Various jobs have critical/super attacks that give the player an extra edge over the competition, however with a catch, in true double edge sword fashion. Take Yuna in her Lara Croft incarnation: Normally Yuna will attack with her guns (yes, the double entendre is noted) however should the player choose, they can also have Yuna initiate a consecutive power attack-similar to Irvine Kinneas Limit Break from Final Fantasy VIII-by pushing the R1 button as many times as possible as Yunas Wait bar empties backwards, players can issue a non stop chain of bullets against the desired foe. While this extra damage is certainly desirable, the aftereffects may not be: because she is now quite drained from this vicious display of aggression, Yuna then becomes exhausted and her Wait gauge now extends to double the size, thus taking TWICE as long to fill up! Thus the obvious dilemma: is it better to use the ability and hope the monster dies in the process, or should one play it safe and allow Yuna to be quick on the draw? Making further use of this process, magic and even item usage is dictated by the wait bar. If a character chooses to cast a spell, there will no longer be immediate action as seen in Final Fantasy X. Instead, the spell will take time to charge: the Wait bar will fill up with a green color and when it reaches the end, only then will the spell be cast. Items work the same way, however often with much shorter wait bars.
Battles are even more fun via the Tiny Bee controller, an expensive trinket Japanese hardware manufacturer Hori created specifically for use in X-2. Not a controller so much as an experience in and of itself, the Tiny Bee is actually two controllers, guns actually. Serving to replace the Dual Shock controller, players can use the Tiny Bee(s?) to not only maneuver Yuna around the globe, but also shoot in style. While the word sugoi! (essentially cool) truly characterizes these incredible accessories, the sad truth of the matter for those waiting for an overseas release is to keep dreaming. Retailing for roughly $150, these babies are quite possibly the most expensive gaming device ever created, at least when you consider they ONLY work with Final Fantasy X-2. Cost aside, Hori only made a few of these and thus importers are frantically scouring online auctions in an attempt to vicariously experience Yunas journey.
Exploration (AKA: Hot Girl + Platforming Action = Tomb Raider)
Alas, the rumors are truein a deplorable decision made to escape the world wide recognition befitting one who killed Sin, Yuna has shed her prudish robes from her previous life and is now a pistol packing, wall scaling action heroine. Just about every area in the game contains various landscapes which can be traversed in ways that previous Final Fantasy games dared not dream of: by climbing, jumping, and falling. Thats right, in Final Fantasy X-2 Yuna has gained the ability to *interact* with her surroundings and thus no longer must use an airship to reach a treasure chest 4 feet above the ground.
Wait a secairshipdidnt Final Fantasy X have one of them? Yes, it sure did however in truth it was a joke: an aerial version of the float Sorceress Edea used in Final Fantasy VIII is hardly what one considers to be the epitome of cool. Naturally the Al Bhed tribe agreed and so Yuna and her cohorts now ride around in style, specifically in the Celsius, a high speed crimson beast that looks more than a bit like Final Fantasy VIIIs Ragnarok. In the closest thing to an overworld fans of Final Fantasy games are likely to see, X-2 features a selectable grid that works the same way the airship navigation from the original game operated: Players have a list of locations they can visit and after making a selection, the ship automatically drops them off.
But if I can go anywhere and do everything, what does Square expect me to do for 40 hours?. When was it ever stated traveling was easy? Final Fantasy X-2 is essentially, for better or worse, nothing more than a series of missions to be completed. (Blame it on Final Fantasy Tactics staff being involved if you must). Each mission has a different Story Level requirement to access and the only way to raise your Story Level is to complete missions. Some missions are optional, resulting in rare items, abilities, or story elements whereas others are obligatory. Completing a mission earns Yuna and company experience points, Gil, and items as well as a possible increase in Story Level. Players can keep track of their progress via a % Complete listing on the games save data screen. Battles still yield experience, gil, and items also however, so one should not think Square has gone and completely turned a new leaf. In a good (bad?) move also, players can collect Al Bhed language books as in Final Fantasy X, thus rendering a seemingly incoherent language understandable.
Music To My Ears!
Musically, Final Fantasy X-2 is another amazing accomplishment. Going far beyond the boring, often uninspired sounds heard in the previous title, X-2 offers completely new music by completely new composers (at least to the Final Fantasy series). Takahito Egucihi and Norkio Matsueda have composed an upbeat, playful score to what was previously a morose and dry adventure. From the moment the opening movie begins, the player will instantly get a feel for the new composers work, most of which is akin to jazzy dance music. Granted the music will not be to everyones liking, but this reviewer prefers it unlimitedly more than that of Final Fantasy X.
Spoken, Not Stirred
As with Final Fantasy X, X-2 features full voice acting. Just about every character speaks to the player, with characters returning from the previous adventure retaining their original voice actors. As is typical of Japanese voice acting, the emotion, feeling, and dynamic the actors and actresses bring to their roles is at the top of their game. Each character sounds exactly as one might think: Yuna the heroic and considerate one, Rikku the playful obnoxious one (hey, she DOES look like Christina Aguilera after all), and Pain the serious, somewhat morose one. [Pain reminds me a lot of Sailor Uranus from the Sailor Moon series]. Sadly one must question what will occur with the English translation of this game, as it would be an understatement to say that the effort put forth in Final Fantasy X will simply not suffice for X-2. Subtitled text anyone?
All Good Things Must Come To An End
Despite the implementation being solid, the action adventure part of the game is not as well developed as it should be. In an early mission whereby Yuna must race rival LaBlanc and her minions to a sphere, the player may become confused as to where to go since no indication is made as to what can be climbed and what cannot. The player must press/hold down the X button for Yuna to perform an action and thus traversable landscape can easily be missed. Some missions require careful analysis of the surroundings, such as a mission to Besaid Island which has Yuna hunting for a secret code. Look too quickly and you will easily miss the rocks you were supposed to climb to get to a code number. Other missions (in fact most of the game) doesnt make use of this feature nearly enough, thus offering the idea that Square threw it in as nothing more than a gimmick.
The game is both too easy and too difficult at the same time. Because of the extremely high pace battles, the nature of doing just about anything other than attacking becomes a life or death situation at times. True the player can set the configuration to Wait however true gamers will seek to play the game in Active Time format for the duration of the game and thus must contend with this issue. Its as if battles are on Turbo speed really and at times it gets to be too much. Moreover, because of the strategic element of the wait (action) bar, there are times when a character is already killed before a healing spell or item can be cast on them. At the same time, the game is easy in that bosses are almost always a joke and can be defeated by attacking the entire time. Most battles work this way also, save for the occasional one with a hard monster or group of them.
The game has loading issues. Not serious ones (nothing tops Xenosaga) however they are significant after playing through Star Ocean 3. I question Squares decision to remove Hard Drive support, as considering I pay for its Final Fantasy XI service, the LEAST it should do is also provide me (and all others) with continued support for its other products. Loading seems to take slightly longer than it did in Final Fantasy X, thus now being noticeable, After every battle there will be a slight pause before the characters do their victory dance, and even after the experience points and gil are allocated there is a significant wait until you can return to the map screen. This issue is hardly a major one, but given the near seamless loading in Star Ocean (even without HDD support), Square should have tried just a bit harder.
To be blunt, Final Fantasy X-2 is a game for girls, told by girls. This is not to say males will not enjoy it however members of said sex should not go into X-2 under the belief it will be a serious moody piece like the previous game. The opening of the game consists of nothing short of a concert complete with a Charlies Angels style introduction. Battle henshin scenes are straight out of a shojou anime, and indeed the entire style and format used in the game is somewhat more lighthearted than if the game had been geared towards males. Furthermore, the game is seemingly quite tailored to the perspective of the average Japanese female, as many things in the game have strong ties to the current trends and fashion statements popular right now. This is NOT to say Final Fantasy X-2 is bad because of what it is, just that it is quite different from Final Fantasy X. Men who are too embarrassed to even acknowledge Britney Spears had better gear up for the ride ahead of them should they take an interest in X-2.
It should come as little surprise to state that Final Fantasy X-2 is essentially a love-hate type of game. Because of the drastic changes made to the Final Fantasy series as a whole, as well as the changes made to the world of FFX itself, there is little chance that fans will find middle ground with this title. Many will be quick to call it gold for the simply fact that it looks nice and is a sequel to the best game ever made while others will claim X-2 is an blatant clone of a magical girl anime. For the few who can accept a middle ground however, Final Fantasy X-2 is quite an engaging experience for the most part, often times providing far more entertainment than most of Final Fantasy X did as a whole.
|Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10|
|Review by Dr Game|
||*Warning Major Spoilers* (Note This Review Was Written at a Time Before the North American Version Came Out) Im planning on updating it at least three more times, it already has been updated once, so please during the stages of construction send me an email if you notice a spelling mistake or grammar error that I missed, or just a mistake I wrote about the game.
Finally two new big things in Final Fantasy games that have never happened before, one is its the first sequel to a Final Fantasy game ever, and two: the main character of a Final Fantasy game is a girl. You heard me, after so many Final Fantasy games (with the exception of Final Fantasy III), Final Fantasy X-2s main character is a girl. There have been a few major advancements, the menu screen looks cool, and everything runs smoother and better.
The thing Ive noticed about most PS2 games is that graphic wise, the second PS2 game a company comes out with for PS2 always has better graphics then the first PS2 game. In this case the rule applies; the graphics in Final Fantasy X-2 are much smoother, like greatly, youll notice the difference right away. This difference is fairly noticeable. The characters are more rounded and more detail is placed into the backgrounds. The characters also seem more life like with more facial expressions and more active body movement. Squaresoft has once again made a game with top of the line graphics and cinimatics, great detail has been thought into it. Most of the cities are the same, it isnt really that much different because its only two years later then Final Fantasy X. Its amazing the FMVs, the details they put into drawing the landscape, the water is just wow, and every single polygonal is used to do the FMVs, and this game really uses the PS2 to its advantage.
Wow, gameplay, where to start. So many amazing changes have been made to this game. Okay, well to start off, yes, the ever famous mini game Blitzball is back. For those of you who dont know what Blitzball is, its the most annoying and dumb game ever. Well I personally dont like it because its not really a skilful mini game, just a mini game that gets annoying. There are just as many people who hate as like it though, so theres a very good chance youll appreciate the game. Kimahri is more talkative in this game, he says and does more then the last Final Fantasy game. Well to tell you the truth I liked the good old mute Kimahri, but yet again, thats just me. Wakka is the same as before just two years older, so nothing has really changed with Wakka. Wakka is really the clueless guy on jobs and stuff at the begging of the game, just like Tidus was confused about the surroundings in Final Fantasy X. And apparently Lulu is pregnant in this game even though she doesnt even look like she is, strange. The characters should have the same voices for the English version, but its not yet confirmed because the English version hasnt been released yet. My only guess is that Rikkus will be different because now shes 17 and not 15 so there probably is a chance that her voice will be different. Yuna is the same as before, she looks the exact same except now shes in disguise because she doesnt want to be noticed, shes famous for defeating sin. Paine (pronounced pine) is a rather new character in the game. She has grey hair and shes a friend of Yuna and Rikku. Le Blanc is your job provider; he dresses up Yuna to disguise her identity at the beginning of the game. Shiparf is a character in the game who supplies you with the essential items you need in the game. He will sell you useful items, and provide you with hotel rooms to sleep in. Another new character named Shinra who is a very wise girl who is your tailor; she gives you help in the game and gives you short little tutorials for help. After taking the dress tutorial you see dress scenes, you cant skip them every time you watch it unless you change the settings in the option menu.
One thing I wish you could do is upload your player stats from Final Fantasy X to Final Fantasy X-2 so then you could start off with very strong players, but you cant. Thats the one thing I really wanted in the game, but never happened. When you start the game, you start off with the airship allowing you to go anywhere you want right away in the game. I think thats cool and it is better that way, this way you get more freedom then other Final Fantasy games right at the start. The more freedom you have in this game the more difficult it is to play. Everything gets more complicated, especially with this new job idea system Final Fantasy X-2 has now. The four default jobs in this game are warrior, singer, thief, and gunner. I the opening movie in Final Fantasy X-2, Yuna is a singer. She is literally a pop star singer, who is singing this catchy Japanese pop music. Basically everything is literally what the job name is, a singer really is a singer, and warrior is also like a blacksmith repairing armour and weapons, but a warrior will also use it in battle. The estimated length of gameplay is around 90 hours; although Ive heard some say that theyve been able to beat it in less then 30 hours. As you progress through out the game, it keeps track of the percentage finished in the story line. You also this time start off with four Al Bhed books for learning Al Bhed. That doesnt make sense to me because of anything I would think that you would start off with all 26 because Rikku speaks fluent Al Bhed.
Another difference is that there is no sphere grid in Final Fantasy X-2. Instead of a sphere grid, you gain experience levels. The battle system in Final Fantasy X-2 is a bit different, you gain experience points during the battle, not after it. Which for me I find weird and a little different for a change. One thing different now, and a very weird decision which will take some time getting used to is the victory music, its actually changed. After you win a battle the victory music is now very different for a change. The battles are now fast paced and you are rushed to make quick decisions because now the fiends are able to attack you while you are deciding your attack, so you better decided quickly if you dont want to be attacked too much. Oh, and there arent any overdrives any more aeons to fight with. Instead of overdrives, your normal attack is stronger then usual, and instead of aeons you transform. This is something very different then the other Final Fantasys because its a tradition to have some kind of powerful attack when being attacked a lot. As any Final Fantasy fan would know, the battle style of each Final Fantasy game always changes, but not this dramatically. One other major difference is that there are only three playable characters for training and fighting in battles with. Those three characters are Yuna, Paine, and Rikku, kind of like the Charlies Angels.
The sound of Final Fantasy X-2 is much more relaxing and soothing then the Final Fantasy X music. This music also isnt as annoying as the Final Fantasy X music, its a lot quieter so it doesnt give you head aches if played over and over again. There is music during battles, and also when youre travelling around, there is always music playing no matter where you go. The music reminds me of Mario Kart 64 music; its kind of like that, but a lot less annoying. The victory music sounds like the music when you loose a race in Mario Kart, its weird and I dont think the music fits the game that well.
Not much to saw about controls in this game because all you ever need to use is the directional pad for playing. You use x to select and stuff too, triangle is menu, and circle is exit. Not much to say on the controls because you cant get picky because of the low amount of skill level required to play this game.
Overall I give it a 9/10. I think this is worth a buy over a rent because with anywhere between 30-90 hours of gameplay, is defiantly worth buying because there is so much to do in the game.
|Reviewer's Score: 9 / 10|
|Review by RayKnight|
||Woosh! I didn't expect Square's sequel would be this good. Infact, its great! Though I never did agree with Square making sequels, I'm surprised that Final Fantasy X-2 is a masterpiece.
The musics still contain its peaceful elements making the background music a pleasure. The controls are still the same and new stuff were added. There are cool stuff, very, very cool. Apart from the side quest to get every Ultimate Weapon as in all other Final Fantasy games. You actually get to play 'Dress Up Yuna'. Each costume gets their different advantage. Costumes that enables her to get better gun status, and also allowing her to be able to increase her class's magic and abilities.
Music 10 out of 10
Pros: The music still retains its great quality. Still as peaceful and great as ever, as in all Final Fantasy games. There was never a problem with the music, vocal or non-vocal.
Cons: Nothing to complain about, but you can enchance your gameplay experience if you have additional speaker and such as such.
Graphics 10 out of 10
Pros: The graphics are smooth and great. And every bit of details are amazingly accurate. You should get a bigger television screen for better game play experience.
Cons: Nothing, and even the disc loading speed is pretty fast too. But it may cause some problems to the old PS2 console.
Gameplay 10 out of 10
Pros: Not only getting all the costumes would be a great addition, but also getting all the Ultimate Weapons and completing all the side quest.
Cons: Nothing, though this will take you a long time to complete, that's the wonder of playing Final Fantasy.
Control 10 out of 10
Pros: Great! Still easy, as in all Final Fantasy games, holding all top buttons, and pressing Start and Select at the same time to reset. Same buttons to cancel and to accept.
Cons: For all who just started playing Final Fantasy and have played Suikoden for a long time, you'll take some time to get use to the controls. Don't fret!
Overall 10 out of 10
Pros: Great! I promise you, once you finish reading this review, you won't think twice about buying this game. What are you waiting for? Go get it now! There is nothing to think about actually. Thinking twice won't help much either.
Cons: If your PS2 is too old, get a new one, old PS2 console may cause some problems with the loading speed...at least that occurs to mine.
|Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10|
|Review by Sculpture X|
||It's last year when Square's fan begin to worry about the big company. Their only 2002 product is Kingdom Hearts- a fine game but not the healthiest showing for a giant supposedly on the rebound. Even worse, FF XI was completely missing from Square's U.S. release list. But despite the hard work they're making on FF XI, they quietly announced FFX-2 for PS2, the first real 'sequel' the series have ever seen.
CHARLIE'S ANGEL, FF-STYLE?
In this game, you'll take Yuna and her gang (Rikku and Paine)for a refreshing-new-gameplay quest. The game is set two years after the defeat of Sin. Spira has never been better. Yuna, however is in the funk in her life. Tidus left her with barely goodbye and the things change in the next story DVD (FFX International). Rikku brought her a sphere containing a spiff image of Tidus in some kind of prison and Yuna is determine to find him.
TAKE THIS JOB AND LOVE IT
The first thing you'll notice about FFX-2 is the complete freedom you get from the start of the game thanks to Rikku's brother, Aniki and his airship name Celcius. You'll start with a few sphere-location leads; after you follow through on them, you'll unlock access to new missions (quests)and episodes (plot points and other jobs).
The freedom will be reciprocated in the battle system, which nearly unrecognizable to FFX players. Building up your party in X-2 entails teaching each member the abilities in multiple job (the system last seen in FF: Tactics and kind-of Dragon Warrior VII) using the job points instead of sphere points.
FREEDOM IN BATTLING
ATB (last seen in FF VIII)is back in X-2, making the battles much more action-packed. Enemies will attack you even though you're not around while the game and the battle is on. The bar is being robust, each turn will require half the long bar in the beginning of the battle, but if you use a special attack (Yuna's for example), it'll be 2 times longer than the last turn, to recover is the purpose I think. Using items, spells will require waiting instead of the pick-and-use-now in most FF games. No changing party member either but you can change your job in battle (with special animation, too)
Exploring an area requires Yuna to jump, climb up and down. This new command will make a place have much area to explore, making it a good replay value. The change to environment is noticeable too (excellent example is Kilika), making the game actually fells like 'two years after' not 'the same'. You can pick mission in the Celcius, each will advance the story no matter how you choose (so no two FFX-2 game are the same).
Final word- This game is GREAT for the FF fans who let downed by FFX. With the interesting story and the all-new-gameplay, X-2 is a must. The menu interface is simply the best in the series. It's easy-to-understand-tutorial (talk to Shinra in Celcius)making the new one feel like veterans. I gave this master piece 10/10. Thanks for your HARD WORK, Square!
|Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10|
|Review by SinirothX|
||Personally, when I saw that they were making so many changes to this game from the original Final Fantasy X game (like Yuna being so uncovered or her wielding guns) I didn't think that SquareSoft was headed in the right direction with this game, but I still had to import the game right away (waiting until 11/4/03, yeah right!). So when I finally received the game and I started playing it, I immediately had to shut it off to eat dinner (darn parents), but when I went back to my room, I didn't come out until at least 3:30 AM just so I could get a drink of water (I was playing that night until 5:26 AM). So as you could see, this game had me hooked, as it was immensely addictive (especially to those who really liked the first one as much as I did). So with all of those things and statements being said, it is time to begin the actual review of this game, Final Fantasy X-2, to see how this game stacks up in all of the different gaming categories from my, SinirothX's, own point of view. So strap yourself in tight, you're in for a real bumpy yet enjoyable ride, let's rock baby!...
This game, Final Fantasy X-2, is an RPG game based off of the 5+ million seller, Final Fantasy X. It is actually a direct sequel to the game, the first Final Fantasy to have a direct sequel, I might add. So anyway, this game was developed by the great people at SquareSoft, and the game's main director is the legendary Yoshinori Kitase (he's been with Final Fantasy series for a very long time, and he's helped alot with most of the better ones). So time for the actual reviewing and enough info about the story behind Final Fantasy X-2.
What the heck is there to say here? Simply spectacular, and these are perhaps the best graphics for a game that has been put on this wonderful game console we call the Playstation2. I mean, have any of you people been to Besaid island? The detail in the landscape, scenery and just the all around environment is so lifelike and intricately woven, it's like you're really there exploring with the beautiful Yuna and the gang. The battles and what you can do in them is pretty graphically neat too, along with beautiful women and the in-depth and detailed enemies that you encounter, battles are pretty darn fun in this game (not that they weren't in all of the other Final Fantasy games either). You'll be gripped and in love with the graphics of this sequel that broke the boundaries of Final Fantasy X's graphics, which on PS2, I never though it would be possible.
This part of the game was really ''different'' than in all of the other Final Fantasy titles. This doesn't mean that it was bad at all, I just believe that if it was done by the great Nobuo Uematsu, that it would have turned out better and I think I would've given it a 10/10. This is simply because Nobuo did this beautiful orchestrated kind of music that I always found soothing and moving since the first Final Fantasy. This new music in the game isn't bad at all, it is just more hip-hop and fresh, and for some reason, I didn't find it nearly as fitting for a Final Fantasy game (or a classic RPG in general) like I did with the music in all of the other Final Fantasy games in the series (even the Xeno and Chrono games had that great music that I'm talking about). Still, don't let this stop you from getting the game, after all, this music is pretty cool.
Now, now, I haven't beaten this game yet so I can't give you too much on it yet, but from what it is looking like thus far, it seems pretty 10/10ish. The beginning of the game and the story then is kinda difficult to really get into, but, after you get past a certain point in the game (it is rather early, so you can enjoy), you really find that you have troubles putting the controller down and walking away to do something else for more than 5-10 minutes. This section will not be marked with spoilers because I haven't spoiled anything, nor do I intend to spoil anything about the story here. But here is a vague little description:
There are these three women; Yuna, Rikku, and Paine. They go out around the world as sphere hunters, and Yuna is looking for her loved one. And along the way they encounter many obstacles and adventures. That is as far as I'll go in order not to spoil anything major in the game for those who are going to wait until that distant November 4, 2003 release date in the US.
Again, another sublimely perfect score for the game in this category because of many reasons and elements that go along behind this score which I am going to cover briefly right here and now. It has a new battle system first of all, which you can really always look for in a new Final Fantasy (at least slightly different in every FF installment *COUGH ATB WAS AROUND FOREVER COUGH*) as well as a brand new level up system which there has been in every Final Fantasy (yes, every one). Also, the gameplay from what I saw was alot less linear this time around, as you could do and explore more (way more) than you could in Final Fantasy X). I mean, you could do backflips and jump over gaps and stuff, most RPGs don't have anything like that. So I guess I liked the uniqueness along with great controlling, and that together made one great gameplay scheme.
I give it that rating because I have not yet beaten the game nor have I taken part in any of the many sidequests or minigames that this game has to offer. Thus, I cannot really give it a true rating. But, I can say that from a good story so far that I've enjoyed alot, I'd at *very least* give it an 8 so far. But, I'm sure that it will be alot more once I beat the actual game and do all the sidequests and minigames for the first time. So I'll update then...
Well, that's the score I give this amazing game which was a sequel to an amazing game which was part of a spectacular and legendary series. In a rent or buy situation, me, personally, I'd say go ahead and buy it because you won't be regretting it trust me. The only way you could not like it is not if you didn't like RPG (because you'd like the awesomeness anyhow), but if you had something against SquareSoft, which not many people do. So have fun with SquareSoft's latest masterpiece.
|Reviewer's Score: 10 / 10|