Review by Zylo the wolf
"This was going to be the last game from Square, but we all know what happened....."
I know I don't have to say this to anyone who clicked on my review, but when it comes to RPGs than Final Fantasy is by far the most successful series, no other series even comes close to it. But this game hasn't always been as popular as it's today. Square almost went out of business and this game was supposed to be the final game that they would make, which is why the name of this game is Final Fantasy. I'm sure that none of the creators of this game knew that they was about to start one of the most successful gaming series when they made this game.
The first thing you have to do before you start your adventure is to decide what kind of jobs you want your four characters to have and you also have to give them good names. This is really important since once you have started your adventure, you won't be able to change either the heroes names or jobs. While there are some combination of jobs that obviously are better than other combinations, anyone who has something intelligent in it's head will make a great team.
The first class and the most important class to have at least one in your party is the Fighter. The Fighter can equip just about every heavy weapon in the game which means that he will be doing the most damage to almost every enemy in the game. He can also equip the best armor in the game, which means he can take many hits as well. To top all this the Fighter also get a lot of health points. Later in the game, the Fighter can be promoted to a Knight, and then he can equip even better equipment and also cast the early white magic spells. The only downside with this job is that it's the most expensive one.
If you don't want to have to worry about money than perhaps a Black Belt is a better choice for you. The Black Belt uses his bare hands when he fights instead of using a weapon, which means that he doesn't cost as much. He's also really fast and can take a hit or two, but the big downside with this class is that there are barely any equipment for him at all. Once the Black Belt gets promoted to a Master, almost nothing changes at all. This is a popular class to have as a second attacker after the Fighter.
Another popular job in the other Final Fantasy games is a thief. In this game, the thief can't steal anything from enemies, which is a major bummer for anyone who have played the later Final Fantasy's. The thief isn't actually that good in any type of combat, but things changes when you promote your thief into a Ninja. The Ninja can equip almost every weapon in the entire game, and he can also use up to level 4 black magic. This includes Fire2, Ice2 and Lit2, which are the most useful offensive spells in most parts of the game.
The next class is the Red Mage. This class can equip a good set of different weapons and armor, which means that he will be able to do more damage than the White Mage and the Black Mage with weapons. He can also learn most of the important spells of both White Magic and Black Magic, but not the absolute best. When he gets promoted to a Red Wizard, he can learn even more spells and use more equipment. But the Red Mage can't do as much damage with weapons as the other fighting classes, and not use magic as well as the other magic users. He also costs a lot of money.
The other two classes are really the same except one thing. The White Mage use White Magic which is defensive magic while the Black Mage use Black Magic which is offensive. To learn magics in this game you have to buy them, and then the spell casters have different magic points for every level of spells they can use. Both mages can't equip many strong weapons or great armor, so it's good to have them in the back. When they get promoted to a White or Black Wizard, they can use the absolute best magics.
As I said before you can't change characters after you have created them, so it's important that you pick a team that you will be happy with. A popular team for those who plays the game for the first time is a Fighter, a Black Belt, a White Mage and a Black Mage. However every time you start a new game and create four new characters, it feels like that you are starting a new game.
Just like many other old RPGs, the story in this game is nothing compared to most of the RPGs we can buy on a modern system. Your four heroes first job is to save a princess from the evil Garland. After the four heroes have done that the King tells them that since they all have a crystal, they are the four heroes of Light who will save the world from evil. Then the game really starts and the player has to explore the whole world.
As in most RPGs, the enemies gets stronger the longer you are from the first city. Unlike many of the sequels in this series, the first Final Fantasy game actually takes place in a typical fantasy world. Here you will meet elves, dwarfs and even the king of Dragons, which is one dragon that every Final Fantasy fan has met in many other Final Fantasy games. Later in the game, you will find a ship which allows you to cross the sea and even later you will find an airship.
The battle system in this game is really similar to the battle system in Dragon Quest. You walk either on the world map or in a dungeon and all of a sudden enemies will pop up and you have to either fight them or run away. A big difference from the Dragon Quest games is that you see the enemies on the right side of the screen, and your own characters on the left side of the screen.
One thing that bugs many who plays this game is that they are used to that if an enemy is dead and one of the characters still are going to attack it then the character hits another enemy, but not in this game. This means that it's more important that you plan a strategy on which characters will attack which enemy. Some also complain that you can't take more than a few steps until a new group of enemies pops up but that's something that didn't bother at least me.
If you defeat all the enemies on the screen, you wil get experience points. When a character gets number of experience points, he will gain a level and become stronger. This game can be very tough at some points, so it's wise to always be at a high level. It might take a while until you reach the next level but remember that it will be worth it if you want to beat the game.
You also get money if you defeat a group of enemies. As you might have guessed, you can use this money to buy better equipment, useful items or even better spells. However just like in many other old RPGs, it takes usually a time to save up for all the money you need for a special item. A good rule to follow when a dungeon is to tough for you is to save up enough money so you have the current best equipment for all your characters. You might also gain one or two levels while you are collecting all the money you need.
Personally I like the first Final Fantasy game really much. I love how most of the enemies, bosses and villages all looks like they have been taken directly from a Dungeons and Dragons book. The story in this game is almost nothing at all, but it's a great world that Square have made in this game. Since you get to name your character and even create their own jobs it feels like you are playing a different game every time you start a new one. This is the only Final Fantasy that got released on the Nes that made it out of Japan, and it's a really fun game to play if you are an old-school RPG fan. But if you aren't, then maybe the first Final Fantasy isn't a game for you.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.5 - Good
Originally Posted: 04/23/07
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