Review by GooberSD

"The Perfect Game. Quite Possibly The Greatest Game Ever Made."

Ever since the series was just a small franchise in Japan the Final Fantasy series has always been the king of all RPG's and in my opinion, games. No other series, except for maybe The Legend of Zelda has as much work and heart put into each installment.

I remember back in 2001 when Final Fantasy X was about to come out, and everyone was so worried on what it would be like. The graphics were unlike anything we as gamers had ever seen before. It was the first game to actually show beauty. We were all so worried about whether the music would be as good as the previous games, whether or not the voice acting which was a first for the series would be good, whether or not the game would be fun and whether or not the game would actually live up to the title, "Final Fantasy."

... we definitely got more than we bargained for.

Final Fantasy X turned out to be the closest thing to being a perfect game; and I can honestly say that because we're still playing the game constantly. Nearly a decade later.

STORY

The story to Final Fantasy X is a rich story unlike anything the series had seen before. Like all RPG's you start out as a regular adolescent male. This time his name is Tidus. Tidus lives in a futuristic sun-bathed metropolis called, "Zanarkand." He pretty much is living the life that every guy wants to live. He is the team star of The Zanarkand Abes, a Blitz-Ball team. He is surrounded by beautiful women, literally everyone knows and loves him and he can do whatever he wants whenever he wants.

Life seems perfect... but things take a turn for the worse when a gigantic whale-like monster called, Sin, comes and destroys his home, family and everything else in his life. Oh yeah, he also gets sent a thousand years into the future. Yeah, that sucks.

Depressed, and all alone, Tidus finds himself in a medieval-like future world called Spira. Where technology is forbidden by the deity, Yevon; and the people live and cower under the might of Sin. Tidus finds himself joining a sacred pilgrimage in order to try and defeat Sin, and find a way back home. What he doesn't expect is for the adventure to take him to places he never dreamed of, and for him to find what he never expected... Love.

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The story is unlike anything else found in a game. The writing, although corny at some points, is excellent. The voice acting is incredibly good, especially for a series that had never had a cast of voice-overs before. The rich characters in Final Fantasy X help bring the world of Spira to life in ways that the Elder Scrolls series, Fallout 3 and Red Dead Redemption can only dream of.

The story to Final Fantasy is not only rich and unique, but incredibly long. The game manages to rack in over 50 hours of gameplay, and that's the story alone.

You could say that Final Fantasy X's story was way ahead of it's time. Sure, some of the parts may feel like a mellow-drama, but isn't that what makes this game such an important classic?

A perfect story.

GAMEPLAY

Final Fantasy is a series that's always been ahead in terms of innovative gameplay, and Final Fantasy X is no exception. The gameplay is one of the factors in X that shine brighter than the rest. The gameplay is legendary in Final Fantasy X. That's why we still play it.

Yes, battles are still random. But they're so much fun that it won't ever get annoying. (Trust me.) For the first time since Final Fantasy IV (II in the US), there is no Real Time Battle System. In other words, enemies will no longer be attacking you while you are making your decisions; you now have all the time in the world to make your decisions.

Other than that, battles are relatively the same as they always have been in the series. You take turns attacking, but what makes Final Fantasy X stand out better than the rest of the games out there is how you can now switch your party members in and out of the battle any time you want. The characters that you fight with in the battle gain experience, so long as they participate. This adds a whole other dimension into the field of gameplay, and allows you to play around with the incredible leveling up system.

You level up your characters through a unique system called the "Sphere Grid." Although it feels over-complex and evil at first, you eventually realize that the sphere grid is one of the more fun parts of the game. In order to level up your characters in the sphere grid you must go around the world collecting different types of spheres. Each sphere has a different effect. (Some increase HP, attack, magic, etc.) When you level up your character you earn points that allow you move around on the sphere grid, and when you move to a spot with a matching slot of the corresponding sphere, you can use that sphere to upgrade your character. (HP slots only work with HP spheres.) It's a little hard for kids to figure out, but teenagers and adults should get the hang of it, and learn all of the fun tricks within a day or two. The sphere grid is almost like a game within the game, and actually makes leveling up fun instead of tedious.

The game also allows you to actually participate in the fictional sport, Blitz-Ball which can be surprisingly addictive. You have the options to be your own team manager, and go and compete against other teams. The rules to the sport are way to complex for me to even try and explain them, so just think of rugby... underwater. Yeah.

The game has a ton of side-quests to do, and they range from training and riding your own chocobo, collecting secret treasures, finding secret temples/summons to fighting for your life in the Monster Arena.

In short, Final Fantasy X has a TON to do. It really never stops offering. I honestly doubt there is someone who actually has beaten this game 100% without the use of AR Max, or a Gameshark.

Amazing gameplay. Never gets old.

MUSIC

One of the shining points in Nobuo Uematsu's career is Final Fantasy X. The game features a soundtrack of over ONE HUNDRED songs, and they are all brilliant. The games theme, "Su-teki-Da-ne" is a gorgeous ballad, sung by a japanese pop singer. It's powerful and emotional, and can really work your feelings. Brilliant writing and singing.

Other songs such as the boss theme, and the regular battle theme are also mentionable stand alones. But my favorite song in the entire game is the ending theme.; it's a song that can actually bring a tear to your eye because of its beauty. The game and music together feel like a work of art, and it's a pity that Nobuo Uematsu is no longer writing the music for the Final Fantasy series.

The best soundtrack ever put into a game. Period.

PRODUCTION/DESIGN

Final Fantasy X took nearly four years to make, and it shows. The game is filled with a level of detail that you rarely find in any video game. The world of Spira comes to life thanks to the splendid visuals, amazing voice-acting and the incredible musical soundtrack.

All of the lines spoken by the main characters feature quality voice acting (With some very memorable and very funny exceptions.) which helps bring the character's personalities to life.

The game feels almost movie quality thanks to the efforts that Square put into this game.

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Final Fantasy X may very well be the greatest game ever made. It is in my book, and you'll find several others who will agree.

The Perfect Game.

STORY - 10/10
GAMEPLAY - 10/10
MUSIC - 10/10
PRODUCTION/DESIGN - 10/10

TOTAL SCORE: 10/10 (Flawless.)


Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 12/06/10

Game Release: Final Fantasy X (US, 12/17/01)


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