Review by Xrider
"Never judge a book by its cover!"
After years of hate Nintendo and Square are back together. At first glance of Crystal Chronicles you will realize it is not a traditional Final Fantasy that many people are used to seeing. Instead of the usual Rpg that Final Fantasy is known for this game is more like an Action Adventure game. At first I hesitated to buy this after I found out it wasn't really an Rpg but afterwards I decided to take a chance and it paid off.
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles in my opinion has the best graphics for a Final Fantasy game ever.This games graphics are amazing. I don't think I have seen any better graphics on the Gamecube. Spells such as Blizzard and Thunder are amazing. The bosses look spectacular in this game as do the enemies. The backgrounds are huge and look very good. I can't really say anything bad about this game's graphics except that sometimes you might see a little slowdown when it gets to frantic on screen. This does not take away from the enjoyment of the game because the slowdown is usually less then a millisecond.
The sound in this game is very well done. The music fits the mood of the dungeon or town your in perfectly. Everything in this game sounds good, from the bosses roars all the way down to the sound of your weapon when it slashes something. The only reason the sound does not get a 10 is because some of the music you hear in world map mode and cutscenes get repeated alot which could get annoying. Other then some tunes this is a great soundtrack for the game that fits the mood of it perfectly.
The story of this game is that a threatening fog called Miasma has covered the world. This fog is harmful to everyone except Moogles. In order to prevent the fog from killing everyone each town has a Myrrh crystal. The Myrrh crystal must be renewed each year in order to prevent the Miasma from killing everyone. In order to renew the crystal adventurers are set out to find Myrrh dew. Myrrh dew falls from Myrrh trees which produce the dew few times a year. Once you collect enough dew the crystal is renewed for another year.The problem here is that Myrhh trees don't produce that much dew a year. Because of this the adventurers must go farther and farther each year to find more dew.
The story of this game is simple when compared to other Final Fantasies. The story is great compared to some other games but in a series as big as Final Fantasy a great story is average. Overall it is a solid story but when compared to other Final Fantasies it isn't anything special.
The gameplay here is more like Sword of Mana. and Kingdom Hearts. This game does not feel like a Final Fantasy. There are few things in this game that are related to Final Fantasy but that's about it. This game is not intended for single player but more for multiplayer. No matter if your playing single player or multiplayer you can find this game fun.
In single player you and your Moogle are out to get drops of Myrrh. In order to do so you must play through dungeons and fight a boss at the end. The dungeons in this game range from giant mansions to underground mines.
In this game you get to choose from 4 races. The four races are Clavats,Lilties,Yukes, and Selkies.
Out of the 4 races you get 4 males and 4 females. There are 32 characters total which is alot of variety.
In multiplayer you and up to 3 friends are out to get drops of dew together. This is where the game comes out and really shines. In multiplayer you can get certain bonuses you would not find in single player.
The only draw back for multiplayer is that each person needs a Game Boy Advance and Gba/Gamecube link cable to play. While some may find this a hassle I think this was brilliant.
In my opinion without Gba's this game would suck. This game has a huge menu and when you go into that menu it takes time to search for stuff and check your stats. Also the menu takes up the whole screen in 1 player, so what would you do if you and another person wanted to check your stats.
Imagine you are having a boss fight with your 3 friends. Now what if you just used up all your food and your friend needs to change his weapon.
Because of Gba's you both could just easily due these tasks without bothering anyone. This is great because your not stopping the game or slowing down the pace of the game.
But without Gba's you would have to pause then go through the menu and finally equip food to heal yourself. Then after that your friend would pause look for his weapon and switch. This is bad because you are stopping the flow of the game and slowing down the pace. This could get annoying if some of the people playing suck and are constantly going to the menu to equip more food.
With Gba's you can check stuff on the go with no hassle.
Another thing is that in multiplayer each person has a different map on there Gba. One person may have a treasure map while the other may have the map showing where all the enemies are. This is great for strategies and helps the game experience.
In multiplayer you can also combine spells for bigger effects. For instance if you and your friend cast a fire and thunder spell on the same target the spells would combine and you make a new spell.
The only downsize of the gameplay is that if you collect a fire magic spell you can only use it for that dungeon. Soon as you beat the boss all the magic spells are gone and you must find them again in the next dungeon.
There are also some differences in single player then in multiplayer. In single player you have a Moogle that carries around your Chalice(Bucket that holds Myrrh)instead of a player. Also in Single player you can fuse spells by yourself since you have nobody else to fuse with.
Besides the fact that everyone needs a Gba and that you lose your spells after dungeons the gameplay here is brilliant. Multiplayer is an absolute blast to play and single player is also pretty fun.
After hearing that you needed a Gba for Multiplayer I wondered how the controls would be. I first thought they would be confusing but Square-enix somehow pulled it off. The Gba controls work perfectly. The Gba controls are very simple (A for attacks,B to pick things up) and were done well.
The regular controls with the Gamecube controller are just like the Gba.
The only hassle here is that if you don't have an official Nintendo Gba/Gamecube link cable then your Gba might randomly turn on and off. Also if you have a Gba:Sp and you don't have the official Nintendo Gba/Gamecube Link cable then the L and R buttons may get squished down. This is a big downfall because you have to buy an official Gba/Gamecube link cable if you have an Gba:Sp and the official Nintendo cables cost up to 15 dollars.
Overall this is a fantastic game. While many people may complain or never give it chance because it isn't a traditional Final Fantasy they are the ones missing out. Never judge a book by its cover is what can describe this game. This game has great graphics,great sound, a nice little story,perfect controls and spectacular gameplay.
Also you wont find any other multiplayer experience like it.
This game is very unique and accomplishes its mission of being a fun game. Like every game it has its downfalls but they are very small ones. If you have alot of friends who have a Gba this is a must buy. This game is also a buy if you are just looking for a fun single player experience. If you don't have friends with Gba's and are unsure about its single player mode you can rent this game.
Pros: Fun Multiplayer
Cons: Need Gba's for Multiplayer
Need Official Nintendo Gba/Gamecube Link
cable if you have Sp
So fun that you will need extra batteries
Buy or Rent
If you have friends with Gba's I say Buy. Also buy if you just want a fun single player game to play.
If you have friends but they dont have Gba's then you may want to Rent. Also you may want to rent if you are unsure about single player.
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 02/16/04
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