374 people found this review helpful
18 people found this review funny
Not Recommended
0.0 hrs last two weeks / 14.8 hrs on record
Posted: Sep 24, 2015 @ 6:20pm

Great combat lost in a mediocre game

Let me start this off by saying I'm a huge fan of Final Fantasy games both old and new, and am always excited by where they take the series. That said, this game preserves a few of the worst aspects of the series and doesn't quite make up for it enough with what it tries to do.

First, it's very obvious that this was a PSP game. Low-resolution textures, stilted cutscenes where characters just stand and talk at each other, and a camera that swings wildly for no reason at all while locked onto enemies make the game a lot harder to digest than one might expect from a different, bigger-budget title. Some games find ways to shine through these issues, but unfortunately Type-0 is not one of them.

Managing fourteen different party members is tiresome, and most of them don't recieve any character development besides a one-dimensional attribute. While the ability to navigate towns and the overworld as any character is a welcome touch, the symptom of this is your character doesn't have any meaningful interactions with the world, and often interacting with other characters shows you a scene that your character isnt even in. If you are the type of person that likes to understand ambient dialogue, you're out of luck. The english dub is atrocious, clearly made by paying the lowest-budget actors possible to simply read their lines off of a page. They also like to pause in their sentences where the subtitles stop on the screen, even if it makes no sense in the sentence. I'm guessing this is a symptom of some sort of PSP audio buffering where they had to divide up the audio files, but I've never noticed it in other heavily voice-acted PSP games so maybe I'm just giving them too much credit.

The story isnt necessarily bad, the world is an interesting take on the Nova Crystalis universe, and the opening cutscene is incredible. However, after the game's opening, the story is mostly told through stilted dialogue sequences and war documentary-style voiceovers, with very little in the way of actual character or action. The soundtrack is forgettable and plays softly in the background of these sequences, never shaping the emotion of the scenes.

The gameplay loop seems fun at first glance, but quickly becomes tiresome. The actual draw of the game, the missions, happen somewhat rarely, and much of the sidequests consist of wandering the empty overworld hunting for specific random battles. To make matters worse, you can only hold one sidequest at a time, though quests to deliver monster drops thankfully let you farm those drops while completing other missions. Still, this system often results in you wasting time trekking all the way back to turn in quest just so you can accept another quest that you could have completed at the same time. There's no excuse for this system, especially since the game is further slowed down by random battles on the overworld rather than a more modern approach such as overworld monsters.

The one thing this game does absolutely right is its combat. The breaksight/killsight system, essentially giving you "moments of opportunity" before or after enemy attacks to do massive damage, interrupt, and/or kill them, makes combat feel exciting and not the "mash the attack button" that other action rpgs such as Crisis Core devolve into. Each of the fourteen characters has different combos and feels unique to play, requiring different timing to hit killsights and letting you navigate the battlefield uniquely. Unfortunately, even the combat is marred somewhat by the camera not behaving well while locked onto enemies in close quarters, and since there's no manual aim, ranged characters will have difficulty hitting certain moving targets since the lock-on doesn't lead them properly. Still, even with these issues, I'm confident in saying that combat is a blast, and plenty challenging.

All in all, I can't find myself able to recommend this game, except perhaps to a small audience that's looking for fun action-rpg combat and doesn't mind a lot of grinding and lackluster characters. To the rest of us, we can hold out hope for some of Square's newer games in the future.
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8 Comments
Qifa Trahunt Mar 15 @ 2:22am 
May I see your thought about XV?
Mr. Matt Jun 15, 2016 @ 10:53pm 
Great review, man. I watched a gameplay video that was very brief and thought this looked awesome, then I read your review. Fourteen characters with little character interaction and NO shared experience? Ugh, that sounds awful!
D3m1 Mar 8, 2016 @ 6:24am 
yeah this game may look good but the mother thing is too old allready
[TC℠] Fabje Mar 6, 2016 @ 12:14am 
Really good review, not afraid to either praise or call out SE on their choices!
Talice Mar 5, 2016 @ 1:39am 
tldr
Lato Feb 27, 2016 @ 2:45am 
The golden age of FF is long gone :steamsad:
Faerly Oct 9, 2015 @ 4:05pm 
I hope so! Im not 100% thrilled on the all male cast but it could be good despite that
Cyanzx Oct 4, 2015 @ 2:50pm 
Just wait for FFXV ;) Same combat better game ;) :wololo: