Review by Daddy_Spanky
"The perfectly "Mastered" Final Fantasy VII Spinoff!"
I would first like to just interject, Wow. This game has exceedingly exceeded my expectations in endless ways. First off, I am an obsessed Final Fantasy VII fan, who practically owns every related merchandise in existence, so I was really propelled to have witnesses the greatness of this game. I am not biased on FF7 products; Dirge of Cerberus's gameplay really disappointed me, because it reminded me more of the repetitiveness of Kingdom Hearts 2, which was basically button mash the attack button, walk, and then a new scene to be watched. That's what I thought crisis core to be at first after seeing many pre-release trailers online. I was completely wrong, for it not only had climatic cutscenes like dirge of cerberus, but it also implemented a nearly flawless action battle system. These two combined elements, plus the portability, clearly places this game as a perfection for both fans and newcomers.
Crisis Core paralleled FF7's story structure to the near perfection, accounting for the major video game revolution seen in the past several years. Its magnificent ability to maintain the original story, while adding new exciting plots are good RPG game requirements. Zack Fair, Cloud's memorable, yet dead friend in the original FF7, comes to life as the protaginist, carrying the trademark Buster Sword. As a top class SOLDIER, he carries out frequent duties arranged by Shinra Co. alongside companions. Throughout the game, unexpected twists of friendship, hate, and decisions, formulate wonderously, never reaching mundane archaism. Many original characters return such as Yuffie, Cloud, Cait Sith, Sephiroth, and the maniacal Hojo. The plots are well progressed leaving zero plotholes and a plethora of interests. Every new introduced character plays a meaningful role with a pleasing abundant amount of memories.
Can this even be debated? The PSP's hardware capabilities rival the PS2, and Crisis Core manipulates it to the zenith, displaying unmatched gorgeous visuals, even with the limited space. With the handheld's HD screen and Crisis Core's smooth cutscene framerate, anyone can enjoy this experience. Can't say much more about it, except concluding this section with a "best part of the game".
The new amazingly constructed battle system should tantalize any FF7 fan at first glance. An action rpg, while retaining the complication and importance of the materia system, creates a new perspective for the series. The occasional limit breaks, now referred to as the Digital Mind Wave, operates as a slot machine to determine each distinct attack, ranging more than 15 distinct ones. If that didn't seem to satisfy your expectations, than maybe the optional three hundred included side missions, which are easily selectable from the menu, will fix it. With over hundreds of accessories and materias(perhaps even one thousand combined, I'm not too sure), completing the game will take some time. Even after you have defeated the final boss, the end is not yet over, for Crisis Core, like FFXII, can be replayed as a new game with your current stats and items, unlocking newer possiblities such as overlimiting HP/MP/AP/ and stats to surpass even the strongest story-wise enemy. The only downside is that you can only control Zack, but factoring the PSP's hardware limitations, it makes sense. Most fans would not grow tedious of this system for a long time.
While Crisis core had awesome tracks, some lacking areas cannot be untold. I understand that the genre of the game required more fast paced themes than the original genre, but more variety could have been a plus. The original Anxious Heart track was remade with slight beats, thus dispelling the strong nostalgic fantasy feeling it once had. The Crisis Core remixed One Winged Angel, known as The World's Enemy, pinpoints the situation sharply. I do not wish to elaborate on this in the review, because the explanation might spoil the story for some people. Nonetheless, overall the music has been enjoyable with just needing minor adjustment to some pieces.
Voice Acting: 10/10
(This is a section that I believe current and next generation games, should be included in future reviews, so I'll be the first to apply this.)
Somehow every devoted fan's opinion, that I survey in this area, always believes that the Japanese voice acting is superior to the English acting. I don't usually like to flow with the majority, yet this time, I'm not too confident. Because I have NOT experienced the English Dub, I will not make an opinionated statement for now, but I do praise the Japanese Dub at the moment. Every character is voiced accurately and with emotion throughout the entire game. The characters' facial expressions neatly matches the tone and words of the voices, making it all a more lively game. Its overall clear words leaves no guesses.
I can't emphasize this enough: IF YOU OWN A PSP, YOU HAVE TO BUY THIS GAME. Although the English version has not been released(by the time of this review), American gamers will enjoy the Japanese version no less. This is one of the games that I would spend more than $50 on, and coming from me as a money-saving advocate, that means alot.
Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII: 10/10
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 12/12/07
Game Release: Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII (JP, 09/13/07)
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