My Final Fantasy X-2 Impressions

Discussion in 'Gaming' started by Yoshi Sugawara, Apr 22, 2003.

  1. Yoshi Sugawara

    Yoshi Sugawara Stunt Coordinator

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    So my coworker let me borrow her copy of Final Fantasy X-2 (Japanese version), and was able to put a few hours into it, and I have to say it's pretty disappointing.

    This is probably one of those "love-it-or-hate-it" games, where you'll find the feel of the game either "lighthearted and fun", or absolutely appalling.

    The opening movie seemed to set the tone of the game, with its J-pop music and dancing. I felt rather embarrassed watching the sequence, from Yuna's changing into her more skimpy outfit, to the introduction of a rival "sphere hunter" who apparently takes fashion cues from J-Lo. The whole thing felt out-of-place.

    The gameplay is mission-based, and you can visit the same locales from FFX. You get to roam the map, this time while holding the "X" button, just so you won't miss those special "jumping" or "climbing" hotspots.

    The battle system feels like its a step back from FFX - I actually thought the slightly more strategy-based battles in FFX were more thoughtful than the mindless battles in FFX-2 I've experienced so far. And I'm tired of these random battles, it's becoming an increasingly annoying distraction - at least make it zippy.

    I haven't really warmed up to the cosplay, er "dress up" system - it almost reminds me of the configuration nightmare that was the FF8 junction system, but it's a little less confusing.

    My overall feel so far is that everything seems sort of half-baked, like Final Fantasy Lite - which I guess is what it's supposed to be. It feels like its trying so hard to pander to the young Japanese audience - in a sort of desperate way. The way how the characters are designed and talk really distract from what I think is a Final Fantasy atmosphere. It does have high production values - good graphics and sound - it's a good product in terms of features and marketing, but it just feels very uninspired so far.
     
  2. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    No offense, but the game seems pretty original compared to the other FF games and many RPGs in general, which I would find to be very inspired.

    I haven't played it yet, but from what I've heard and read, it is overall (meaning from beginning to end) very good and has a LOT of things to do.

    And if it's too different from past FF games, well, that's kinda the point.

    But thank you for the first hand impressions. How do you like the mission-based system versus the linear one from FFX.
     
  3. DaveGTP

    DaveGTP Cinematographer

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    The J-pop music and dress-up: I love a good FF game, but I am a little skeptical of the step backward that X-2 seems to be. Battle system (ATB again), experience (no sphere grid), etc. The job system is all and good, but FFX was the first FF in a while that I felt really got original. Except for the pathetic difficulty.

    Plus, the best part of FFX was the story, and the nice sad ending. I almost feel that X-2 is undermining the whole theme and melancholy ending of FFX. I will probably give the game a whirl, but unlike most FF games, which I love, (exempting FF8), I am a little leery of what this one will end up being.
    From what little I have seen of XII, THAT is a FF I am definitely looking forward too.

    Glad to see someone that has played it hands-on, thanks for the impression info.
     
  4. Mark Evans

    Mark Evans Supporting Actor

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  5. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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  6. DaveGTP

    DaveGTP Cinematographer

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  7. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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  8. DaveGTP

    DaveGTP Cinematographer

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    Hmmmmm.....normally I watch until I get "THE END" and the music rolls for a few minutes, specifically to avoid things like this. If I recall, it was very late when I beat the game, so maybe I missed this. Hm.

    Hmmmmmm.

    Absorbing information....seems like a deliberate sequel tie-in. Perhaps they planned X-2 from the beginning. Still, I think I liked the ending the way it was, and not a direct sequel.
    Wow, can't believe I missed that. Maybe I did see it, and just didn't pay it much attention.
     
  9. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    X-2 was made because Square really, REALLY, needed money. Using a graphics engine they already have and developing a new game around it wasn't that hard, and it certainly paid off in Japan.

    A few of their games have ambiguous endings that could lead to sequels. FF7 could certainly be made into a sequel, and FF6 actually was rumored to have had a sequel in development for it. Given some time, they could come up with good stories for a sequel for each game.

    And the reason they haven't said anything about sequels for other FF games is probably because those games don't have engines up and running on PS2, like FFX did.
     
  10. Shayne Lebrun

    Shayne Lebrun Screenwriter

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    Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't Mystic Quest *not* a Final Fantasy game, but instead, simply has the words 'Final Fantasy: ' slapped onto the title on US boxes?
     
  11. Yoshi Sugawara

    Yoshi Sugawara Stunt Coordinator

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    No offense taken, Morgan [​IMG]

    The mission-based gameplay is a welcome addition, and implies a "roam the free world as you like" type of gameplay, but some missions limit the places you can go for the sake of the story, so you don't feel as "free" sometimes.

    And Final Fantasy Mystic Quest was originally released in the U.S. only, since Square at the time was unsure of whether future Final Fantasy games would be successful in the states - it was kind of a barometer for the RPG series. It was later released in Japan as "Final Fantasy U.S.A"

    I've been reluctant to play FFX-2 these past days - feels like more of a chore. I'm just disallusioned with not only Square but the whole Japanese game industry itself - there really needs to be stuff other than rehashes or else I smell a video game crash in Japan.

    Meanwhile, I'll be waiting for SW: Knights of the Old Republic - a true RPG.
     
  12. DaveGTP

    DaveGTP Cinematographer

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    From what I remember, I think FF:MQ was actually the First Seiken Denenstu (sp?) in Japan - in the Secret of Mana series over here. Our Secret of Mana was actually SD2, and we never got SD3 (at least a legally-translated cartridge for SNES). Someone correct me if I am wrong.
     
  13. Morgan Jolley

    Morgan Jolley Lead Actor

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    The GB Final Fantasy games were not FF games, but SaGa games.

    Mystic Quest was an original FF game.

    Actually, I think the first real non-FF Square game in America after FF came out for NES was Chrono Trigger.
     
  14. DaveGTP

    DaveGTP Cinematographer

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    Aha, here's a good page. I'm going to bookmark this. It has all the Japan-US-Europe versions straightened out for different companies (Square, Konami, others)

    http://gmi.rocketbaby.net/what.html

    Looks like the Europe Mystic Quest for Game Boy was the source of my confusion. Morgan's right as usual [​IMG]

    Mystic Quest [EUROPE] (Gameboy) - Seiken Densetsu
    Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest (SNES) - Final Fantasy USA
    Mystic Quest -Legend- [EUROPE] (SNES) - Final Fantasy USA
     
  15. DaveGTP

    DaveGTP Cinematographer

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    You know what I would be interested in, more than anything? The difficulty level of X-2. FFX was way to easy, and that was with 0 leveling up. I loved the game, but it was not challenging at all. I think I died once (excluding the things that do the cheap dizzy-confuse-charm-turn-to-stone-poison attack in the optional dungeon)
     
  16. Yoshi Sugawara

    Yoshi Sugawara Stunt Coordinator

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    According to my coworker, who finished the game, she said it was "very easy." But she mentioned that she could not get to an extra location where

    Yuna can meet Tidus (her opinion)

    I don't think Square would up the difficulty and alienate a lot of casual gamers. Their aim was to release a product quickly, and make it easy enough to appeal to a large audience as much as possible to generate more sales.
     
  17. DaveGTP

    DaveGTP Cinematographer

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    Thanks for the comments on difficulty. If it is that easy, I will probably get it cheap a while after release, and ebay it back off afterwards.
     

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