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When you mix-and-match so many elements together, you're bound to get some parts that fall flat.



Final Fantasy Type 0 for the PS4. Developed and Published by Square Enix

When you die, your identity is taken from the minds of your family and friends to spare them the pain of loss, making it easier to move forward. Your family is notified of their loss, such as it is, though they know not any pain of losing you. This is granted to all people by the will of the Crystals.

That is creepy as fuck. That is also the start of the game where the 14 members of Class 0 fight to save their capital city from the invading force of the Militesi Empire. FF Type 0 tries hard to emulate the military strategy and horrors of war between four conflicting forces. With each force having a Crystal to empower it, each Crystal having it's own avatar (called l'cie, taken from FFXIII), a warring council with personal dramas, and much more, the cast of this title is notably extensive while simultaneously being maddeningly two dimensional. That many characters can't all get the same treatment on the screen, so they come off as shallow, myopic NPCs that simply serve as a plot device or appear needlessly caustic. To be honest, half of the time I actually wondered if I was controlling the true villains of the game because of certain actions that must be made that no one bothers to try to justify.

I'd like to say that there's a good reason for all of this because the plot is pretty strong, but it's not. At least, not on the first playthrough. See, FF Type 0 expects you to play through the game several times, each time adding more history, cut scenes, and details to fully flesh out the characters and thier motives. It's like reading a book where someone has torn out pages from it and will give you some of the missing material each time you read it.

This isn't compelling. No one likes this. It shouldn't be done.

If you want a different take with a different ending, do that. Gamers would replay a game to try a different story path and that has proven to work. No one wants to spend hours assembling a puzzle if pieces are missing. Because of this, the (first) ending was utterly unsatisfying. Things happened, something contradictory happens, something inexplicable happens, cutscene to what may have been earlier in the game, return to present time with things happening, a contradictory AND inexplicable thing happens, outro, credits. All of the missing material that would fill in the nearly innumerable gaps can only be gained on replays.

Yeah, no. In fact, never. (I wound up using a Wiki to see what I missed, and was very annoyed about was withheld.)

Now, it's not to say that I completely disliked the game. FF Type 0 is a very healthy blend of elements taken from other FF games to liven things up. The real-time fighting with each of the Class 0 cadets' unique weapons and fighting styles was taken from FFXIII and was pretty enjoyable. The class of students was a nice call back to FFVIII's SeeD cast, and the job class abilities were a fun feature taken from FF Tactics and FF V. Breeding Chocobos makes a return as a pared-down task that's completely optional but pretty useful, unlike it's offensively slow progenitor found in FFVII. Hidden monsters, replaying combat missions, and more made the action aspect of the title entertaining, if a bit grindy at times. These don't quite offset the word salad that pretends to be a plot, but it saves the title from being completely irredeemable.

I'd give it a 6.5 out of 10. you could do much, much worse, but there are also vastly better games out there.

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