Review by leveledclassic
"Stop reading this and go buy this game!"
I literally just completed this game no more than an hour ago and felt this over whelming urge to write a review on this game. This game was great on almost every level, there is only one thing they could have added to make this game better.
As soon as you get 50 or so dollars I highly recommend going and buying this game. Even if you're new to the entire Final Fantasy franchise still buy this game (Or rent it if you're low on cash...) Well now onto the review.
Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core is a prequel to the earth shattering hit Final Fantasy VII(I will abbreviate it as FFVII) it takes place roughly five years before the events of FFVII. You play as Zack Fair; a black haired lad in an elite military group called SOLDIER. I don't believe SOLDIER stands for anything it is always addressed in capital letters. It's a real time RPG where you battle numerous enemies single handedly through spells and steel.
GAME PLAY 9/10
But if this games perfect why did you give it a nine!? Well it's perfect for the most part excluding one tiny bothersome flaw which I will explain further along. As mentioned before this game is a real time RPG, you fight enemies using you're sword by tapping the X button, other buttons allow you to block, dodge(which is extremely handy) and cycle through commands. You're other commands are based on what materia you have equipped. If you have fire equipped you can cast fire, if you have cure equipped you can cast cure. Along with magic you can also learn special moves such as Jump, and elemental attacks which require AP. AP acts the same way MP does. The most note worthy thing about the combat however is the DMW, it is a ever spinning slot machine that grants you special attacks and powers in batter, for instance if the DMW lands on 777 you are granted limited invincibility. Also along with numbers the DMW features character reels as well, when the DMW lands on two of the same character it activates "Modulating Phase" Which is a larger DMW with heightened abilities, for instance if you get two of the same number you're materia levels up, if you get lucky 7's you level up...Sadly this is the only way to level up. Yes a random leveling system.If you get three of the same character you do the equivalent of FFVII's limit breaks.
Other than the combat the game play is simple. Walk here. Talk to this person. So on. But in this game they came up with a system that did away with running in circles to level up. At any save point you can go on "Missions." Which are tiny sub quests with little or no story. They're basically dungeon crawls with many enemies, and a strengthened boss encounter and a juicy reward.
Now on to Crisis Core's only flaw. It's pathetically easy, never in an Final Fantasy game have I had over 9000 hit points at level 40.The enemies do almost no damage, you can dodge nearly everything they throw at you, they flinch when hit so you can hit them almost endlessly without resistance.
Unlike the other FFVII spin offs this game has a good driving story. People who have played FFVII will be overcome with nostalgia many time through out the game. The general theme of the game is an ex-SOLDIER named Genesis has started creating pseudo-clones and is attacking Shinra(The company SOLDIER works for) Genesis gets Zack's best friend Angeal to join him which makes this personal for Zack. But Zack doesn't go after Genesis for revenge, he goes after him to try to persuade him and Angeal stop everything they're doing(Which I will not reveal due to risk of spoiling) Long story short, Genesis and Angeal for some reason are degrading into nothing so they are enlisting the help of a rogue scientist. As the game goes along Zack gets mixed up along the way with Aerith, a girl from the slums of the Shinra city Midgar. What drove this games story along so nicely was that the characters were easy to like. Zack's cheerful mood for the first half of the game makes you get more emotionally involved unlike apathetic quiet Vincent from FFVII: Dirge of Cerberus. So when the entire game starts turning dark half way through you can really see the effects on the characters.
When you first play you are treated to a beautiful opening cut scene. After that I was blow away by the tiny PSP's graphics for this game. The character models were well detailed, the back grounds were drab at times but gave the game the appropriate atmosphere for each region. All the characters had realistic facial expressions that made it easy to tell what they were each feeling. All the enemies look like the designers actually took the time to work on them even if many enemies you fight later are just palette swaps and just a tad bit bigger.
The sound quality of this game is top notch. Almost every character has voice acting done for them(Except Tifa for some unholy reason) The back ground music always seems to fit and give mood to the game. Most of the battle music is rock and there are many different tracks depending on where you're fighting the battles. The music provides a nice good a$$ kicking feel when you're fighting legions of Genesis copies, and a quaint emotional feel when Zack and Aerith are talking.
This game may only have about 10-20 hours of play time but you don't end up feeling like, "Thats it?" at the end. Also if you add the missions it becomes 30-40 hours of game play.
Now for the age old question of rent or buy? I recommend buying it but renting would work fine.
Now for my pros and cons section...
+ Fun active combat
+ Unique leveling and limit break system.
+ Amazing graphics
+ Best battle tracks I've heard since Halo 2.
+ One of the first games In awhile I played just to see what would happen next in the story.
- Leveling up is seemingly random
- Laughably easy at times
- Cheese-tastic random cut scene about a 1/3rd of the way through the game
- The missions use the same environments over and over again.
? Do you really level up at random
? Angeal didn't use the Buster Sword much at all because he thought use made it wear and rust but Zack has no problem swinging it at metal objects and such.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 03/31/08
Game Release: Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII (US, 03/24/08)
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