Review by Dogg

"Final Fantasy X could easily be marked as one of the best games out there!"

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Introduction
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And thus a new Adventure begins!

With each Final Fantasy game comes a new adventure. This new adventure will contain its many new characters, side quests, etc. Final Fantasy has proven time and time again that is a revolutionary series and one that almost any one shouldn't miss out. Square, maker of the Final Fantasy games has really found a thing they are good at and they will never stop until the end. With Final Fantasy 1 the introduced this new world and surprised many, then it went and sold just crazy. With Final Fantasy 2, Square proved everything it could've proved and made one of the best games of all time. And then throughout the years we've seen the Final Fantasy series turn upside down from being an RPG (role playing game) to being a strategy RPG. That is until Square announced Final Fantasy 7.

Final Fantasy 7 would've been everything we've seen from the Final Fantasy series with mixed results. The game was issued for the Nintendo 64. However, Square soon cancelled and turned to a much different company, Sony. Sony's Playstation console was doing quite good with its sales and with Square joining them it would have been even better. Then the game was released and everyone was shocked. This was probably the best game anyone has ever seen and it looked so good. This was the first Final Fantasy game to a '' next generation'' console. Square later released Final Fantasy 8, Final Fantasy Tactics, and Final Fantasy 9, which also captivated the series. Here enters a new year and now Sony has a new console and Square is ready to prove to everyone once again that they can continue making good games.

Here enters Final Fantasy X (10). This game promised good graphics, excellent gameplay, new characters, and many more sidequests. They would also take out the Active Time Battle System, which was infected in almost every Final Fantasy game. So with Final Fantasy X being released, did Square promise all those things? Hell yes! Of course they did what were you thinking?

This marks the first for a Final Fantasy game on a true '' next-gen system'' and this will also help it along the way. As it turns out Final Fantasy can be to many one of the most captivating and most experienced games around. If anyone has got the hardware for it then they should definitely play this game, because you won't be let down. And in the end when everything is said and finished Final Fantasy X can be one of the best games on any console and most importantly the PS2. Also Final Fantasy X will have good competition with many games making many people even more eager to try it out.

If you have been wanting to know more about Final Fantasy X then here it is. Final Fantasy X as I've mentioned brings back many new things. Things from the past and things we've recently have seen. If you are looking for the best cinematics and graphics around you've found it. Also the sound is just as captivating as the sound as composer Noguo Uematsu and team have done a deal of great work on it too. The voice acting is good too and just like Capcom's Devil May Cry, the lip-synching is done well too. The game doesn't suffer from harsh load times either. Everything is quick and steady and the loading process is done really fast. The game's character list can also be noted as one of the best in any character's history (except the Metal Gear characters of course).

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Gameplay- 9/10
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Nope this isn’t Betsy Ross on crack

The gameplay is really refreshing and the game itself brings back new memories and it just remakes itself. Also some major gameplay elements as I mentioned like the Active Time Battle (ATB) system being taken out it just gets better. So since the ATB system is gone then how the heck do you fight anybody? You fight them with the system that was used in the Front Mission series. Arguably it's not that hard to learn, but if people talk to you about it and you don't experience it first hand then it can be a bit confusing. Mainly the battle system is simple. Just look at the sidebar at the top left of the screen and follow it. It will give the turns in which you and your allies attack. As well as when your enemies attack. And when you use magic spells like Haste or Slow your meter for your character to attack will either make them attack fewer times or make them attack faster.

The game also brings back to you having 3 characters in your party. This disposes of Final Fantasy 9's 4-character system. One new gameplay element is in the form of your summons. In this game your summons are called Aeons. Some of the major Aeons I've experienced are Ifrit, Shiva, Bahamut, Valfore, the sisters, and that sea creature which I still don't know its name. The summons just look beautiful. Everything from making you look at Ifrit's Hell Fire Attack to Bahamut's Mega Flare attack all look so good. In Final Fantasy's 7 & 8 you had to keep on seeing your summon do their attack which at times started to get boring and timid. In this game you don't have to keep seeing them. This might just brings some smiles back to some people's faces. However the summons aren't like the past summons which just did an attack and went away. Now the summons are your characters. When an Aeon is summoned, the Aeon will come and your characters will leave except for the Aeon and it's summoner. The Aeon will act exactly like a character it will have overdrives (limit breaks), magic spells, and just simple attacks. The Aeon however, disappears when its HP (hit points) are out or when its summoner has died.

Another new gameplay element that is cool is the sphere grid system. This might be a bit confusing at first, but it's quite simple really. Since your characters no longer receive Experience points they now just receive AP points. When your character gets enough AP they will take a move on the grid, which will soon make them learn special abilities. All characters start at a different area on the board making it act like one big board game.

The game as I said also has some of the best characters ever. The characters in this game are Tidus, Yuna, Wakka, Kimahri, Rikku, Lulu, and Auron. The game's main hero, Tidus is a pro blitzball player. Blitzball is a combination of soccer, a little of baseball, and some basketball. However, it's mainly a type of soccer game. The blitzball activity replaces the card game from the past games (FF8 and FF9). Blitzball is really fun, but it all takes a while to learn so don't expect to get it right off the bat.

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Graphics- 10/10
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Very steep, Very rich

If you have been looking for the one game with excellent graphics, then congratulations you've found it. This game features some of the best graphics ever and it also shows you just how far we've come in videogames. In this game almost everything is detailed and it looks really nice. The backgrounds are also really good despite some bad lighting effects. But still the main feature that helps out the graphics are the cut scenes. The cut scenes (or cinemas as they are called) are really good and should surprise in many more ways than one. Also the character models are nicely detailed too. Everything from the characters hair to their eyelids looks really, really good. So to sum it up, Final Fantasy X is definitely one of the best looking games of all time on any system and should show the other consoles some of the true power of Sony's amazing Playstation 2 system.

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Sound- 9/10
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Shallow has never “sounded” so good!

The sound is greatly detailed too. The composers and the teams did a nice job of tuning it to make it as good as possible. And it probably is as good as possible. However, what people were really worried about a couple of months ago would have been the voice acting. Would it have been good or bad? Well to tell you the truth it is both. It really depends on the person's perspective and of course their main opinion. My main opinion is that it is really good, but I guess it could have been at its core a bit better. But hell why should you argue about that? I mean this is the first Final Fantasy game with full voice acting. So be proud of Square's main accomplishment.

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Replay- 8/10
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Inconsistency mixed with healthy flavor!

It really depend if you should play this game to the end or play the whole game a second time. I mean this game is probably the biggest Final Fantasy game of all time, with many side quests like Blitz ball and the Al Bhed quest to make it bigger. But to really review this I would need more people’s opinions. People would probably not even want to finish this game or many will just play it for the experience and this game will offer you the main experience. Plus you should play this game at least more than once because this is really one of those games in which you shall savor it from beginning to end.

Overall Score- 9/10 for Final Fantasy X by Square for the Playstation 2.

Closing Statement- Final Fantasy X is just one of those treasured games that just doesn’t come out so often. Thanks to its innovative, and moody style Final Fantasy X proves that it is a sep above the rest. This Final Fantasy also shows the roots that future Final Fantasy games can follow. With everything that Final Fantasy X proves, no wonder it is the best RPG for the year-old Sony Playstation 2.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 12/20/01, Updated 09/03/02


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