Review by Calamity
"A fantasy reborn."
Final Fantasy III DS is a remake of Final Fantasy III. A game originally for the NES. Due to the fact Final Fantasy III NES was never released outside of Japan, Square-Enix then decided to remake the game entirely. 3D graphics, better sound quality, better gameplay and more sidequests. Square-Enix fortunately released the remake across seas and I bought it. The game definitely lived up to my expectations and it was a great remake despite some flaws. Read on to find out exactly why this game left such a remarkable impression upon me.
Graphics:9/10:The graphics for this remake are wonderful. Characters are detailed and so are the enemies. Areas are beautifully designed and so are structures. My only real big problem would be pixels. Often when looking at characters they look extremely pixelated. Which can be extremely detracting at times. In battle graphics are really good too. Attack animations look great and everything works how it should. It's impressive that a handheld could pull off a high end PS1 graphics equivalent game. My hugest issue is that sometimes the area designs can be a little bland. Despite that though, the graphics overall are quite good. So, a 9/10 for the graphics. With graphics out of the way, it's onto the gameplay.
Gameplay:9/10:Final Fantasy III is a very enjoyable old-school RPG. It's an extremely traditional RPG. You progress through the game in a linear fashion. Going from town to dungeon. Upgrading equipment, resting at the inn and doing whatever you need to in town. Then from there, you proceed to the next dungeon. You travel to the end of the dungeon and generally face a boss at the end. Defeat the boss, and repeat the whole previous process. Simply put, extremely typical progression for a RPG to have. As far as battling and exploration goes, you pretty much do all of that with a 4 man party. Similar to Final Fantasy 1 though, you pretty much get job classes.
Each character can choose a job class to be. Every job class their own pros/cons and capabilities that distinguish them from one another. Even cooler, is that each time you change a job class the character's appearance changes. There's also a plethora of job classes throughout the game. So, there's plenty of party combinations to try out throughout the game. Every character has their own individual levels, but there's also job levels. Every single job class levels up to. All job classes level to 99. Once a job class levels, certain stats go up depending on what job it is. In conclusion though, the job classes are definitely one of the most awesome parts of the game. As mentioned earlier, battles are also a part of the game of course. Especially, considering that it's an RPG. Similar to most older RPG's, Final Fantasy III has random encounters. You walk around a area where enemy encounters are possible and after a few steps, you'll randomly get into a battle. From there, you go through a transition from the field to a battle screen where the battle happens.
Battles are pretty much turn based. So, it involves you choosing commands for your party to command and going at it against your opponents until either you prevail or lose. If you win, you gain EXP/Gil for winning a battle as with most RPG's. Lose and it's game over of course. In terms of battle speed though, the game is a tiny bit slow. It could have been a little quicker. However, it's definitely not something unbearable and it's okay for the most part. It really won't aggravate you unless those kinds of things really annoy you. In terms of difficulty though, the game is quite bizarre.
The game begins easily with you breezing through most battles. Instead of getting much harder though, it oddly becomes easier. A problem is though, that sometimes you randomly get a boss that is a lot harder than the previous few bosses. Despite that though, there is some hope. For example, the optional boss of the game will give players a good challenge. In general though, the game is really easy. I didn't even use a guide or the forums much while playing and I had a ridiculously easy time going through the majority of the game. Fortunately, even with such an easy difficulty the game lasts a pretty long time.
I spent at least 60 hours on Final Fantasy III DS. Since, I enjoyed the game so much I practically did all the sidequests, got all the best equipment, got all of the job classes, leveled my characters to the highest level etc. Final Fantasy III DS has a lot of optional content and that's fantastic. Since, it adds a lot of replay value and gives you something to do once you complete the main storyline. Plus, the optional boss will give players a decent challenge. The main storyline alone is probably at least 25-30 hours long. Overall though, the length and gameplay in general is great. I give the gameplay a 9/10. The only real minor flaw to the game is that the battle speed is a little slow at times and that the job classes are unbalanced. Some jobs are useless and some are way too good that they render most of the others obsolete. Either way, a 9/10. Now to review the music of the game...
Music:7/10:The music of Final Fantasy III DS is pretty good. Square-Enix decided to keep the same songs, but remix them basically. The battle music is fine and so is the boss music. My main problem are the dungeon songs though. Several of the dungeon songs are really boring and haven't aged that well. In general, a majority of the songs in the game haven't. However, there are a few gems in the rough. On a more positive note though, sound effects such as swords slashing are great though. Overall the music is fine, but not fantastic and the sound effects are great. So, is Final Fantasy III DS worth buying overall?
Overall:8/10:Final Fantasy III DS is a great remake that shows the capability of the DS. The graphics on it are amazing for a DS game. It's a fun balanced game, but a little too easy. The job system is decently balanced, but there definitely are a few gimmicky jobs. Music hasn't aged too well, but it gets the job done. Ultimately though, the game is a great remake. I did just about everything the game as I truly enjoyed the game. That includes all sidequests, getting to level 99 etc. So, you can definitely tell I really enjoyed this game. However, the game is not for everyone. If you want a RPG with a innovative battle system, a complex storyline or features such as that, steer clear of Final Fantasy III. This game is truly a old-school RPG at heart and you should come into this game with that mindset. IIf this sounds like a game that would appeal to you, then it's definitely worth a buy. I really enjoyed this game and it's a excellent remake. Ultimately, a 8/10. Definitely worth buying for anyone who is a fan of old-school RPG's.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 07/17/08, Updated 08/23/11
Game Release: Final Fantasy III (US, 11/14/06)
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