Best Final Fantasy games: Final Fantasy 15
After what felt like a millennia in the making, Final Fantasy 15 was welcomed by long-time Final Fantasy fans, as well as those new to the franchise. While some hardcore fans were disappointed with the offering, nobody can deny that it has modernised the series, and delivers something unique when compared to previous Final Fantasy titles.
The combination of an open world, a dramatic storyline and four main characters to switch between on-the-fly when battling provides a game that’ll keep you coming back for more, time after time.
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Best Final Fantasy games: Final Fantasy 14: A Realm Reborn
While the early days of Final Fantasy 14 were dark and full of bugs, the game has transformed itself during its lifetime and is now one of the best Final Fantasy games of the franchise, still receiving updates years after its initial launch. The classes are versatile, the battle system is intuitive and the environment is huge and varied – what’s not to like?
The ability to switch class when changing weapon isn’t something that’s featured in many MMORPGs, but having the ability to switch from a Mage to an Archer on-the-fly comes in handy, especially in more challenging battles. Combine that with the recently released Heavensward DLC and you’ve got an online Final Fantasy game that’ll stand the test of time.
Best Final Fantasy games: Final Fantasy 7
Final Fantasy 7 holds a special place in the hearts of Final Fantasy games, as back in 1997 it was the first of the series to become available in Europe – in fact, it probably explains why the game is being remade for PS4 as we speak. Players yearn to return to the adventures of Cloud Strife, the pixelated open world and Pokemon-style turn-based combat.
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Best Final Fantasy games: Final Fantasy 12
It’s hard to ignore the influence that the Star Wars franchise had on the Final Fantasy series, but in no other game is it more obvious than in Final Fantasy 12. The story of an evil empire taking a young princess captive while an idealistic young man teams up with a thief and an alien to rescue her sounds familiar, right? Combine that with the RPG combat system that allowed players to map out behaviour rather than actions and you’ve got a Final Fantasy that both FF and Star Wars fans can enjoy.
Best Final Fantasy games: Final Fantasy Adventure
Remember the Final Fantasy game available for the Game Boy? While our younger audience might not, the game actually inspired the Secret of Mana series and is the first game to be directed by Yoshinori Kitase, the mastermind behind FF6, 7, 10, 13 and producer of 15. Despite being designed more like a Zelda/Pokemon hybrid than a traditional Final Fantasy game, the stoic storyline shone through, even on the Game Boy.
The game has been remade a number of times, most recently on the PS Vita and for iOS, but you can’t beat the original. Time to dig out the old Game Boy, right?
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Best Final Fantasy games: Final Fantasy Tactics Advance
Designed for a younger audience, Final Fantasy Tactics Advance embraced a simpler storyline than found in other Final Fantasy games, without dumbing down the action in the process. The story is much like the reality: school kids find an old book called Final Fantasy and get sucked into its world (replace book with game, and it’s a true story!).
The aim of the game is to build an army, raise units and pit them against each other in strategic battle on grid-based maps. Rather uniquely, the game features a judge that oversees every battle and places different restrictions (no magic, etc) depending on your play style, forcing you to get creative with each fight.
Best Final Fantasy games: Final Fantasy 10
Look familiar? It should, as Final Fantasy 10 laid the foundations for the Final Fantasy games we know and love today. It was the first in the series to feature actual human performances as opposed to text on screen, and was the first to not feature songs written by the notorious Nobuo Uematsu.
Admittedly, the game hasn’t aged as well as others in the series with cramped environments and a questionable storyline featuring doomed sorceresses and the like, but if for nothing more than the impact it had on later games, Final Fantasy 10 deserves a slot in our roundup.
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