Review by EPoetker

"Easily one of the best Gameboy RPGs, and it isn't even turn based!"

Finally I review the first of the Secret of Mana(Seiken Densetsu) series! An absolutely groundbreaking game, even better than Link to the Past in some respects, Final Fantasy Adventure set the stage in all ways for the heavyweight titles to come. Just look at the

GRAPHICS: Same enemies as before(or rather, later, but I played this game AFTER Secret of Mana, so it seemed like before, so...agggghhh...)About the enemies: f you've played Secret of Mana or Seiken Densetsu 3, you'll notice that ALL of the enemies you've met in those games have a counterpart here. Great example of continuity in a series(or programmer laziness, whichever.) And the fact that they squeezed all those wondrously drawn bosses onto a little Gameboy cartidge without causing significant slowdown or flashing shows how much time was spent on this teensy title. No worries, the bosses are still easy to see on that little screen, amd the backgrounds are sparse enough not to strain your eyes. Great job here. But as for the

Music, I can't say much. What's done is done, but when it's done on the Gameboy's music synthesizer there's just no way around a loss of quality. The music is okay, and if I pretend really hard I can convince myself it sounds cool, but I don't like training my mental orchestra to translate 8-bit bleeps into whatever instrument they were trying to squeeze out. I just ignore it after a while, because the

GAMEPLAY is absolutely top-notch! Final Fantasy Adventure was also called Mystic Quest(at least my downloaded copy was) and in my opinion, this was what that underwhelming Super Nintendo game SHOULD have been. Same character design, but MUCH better gameplay. Square added a very telling feature-sometimes you'd get a second, non-controllable character who'd run around and fight enemies with you. This would evolve directly into the cool three-player concept in Secret of Mana. As would the variety of weapons. You can choose from a bunch of different weapons as you progressed further in the game, and the nice thing was that these weapons could also be used for things like cutting trees(battle axes,) bridging chasms(whips,) and slicing through underbrush(the sickle.) You also had a ''charge'' meter, which filled up slowly at first but faster as you gained experience. And this game has so far been one of the only ones with a SENSIBLE experience-gaining system: As long as you killed every enemy on every screen you were on, you were guaranteed to be at a reasonable level for all the major boss battles. Some companies just can't seem to get it into their heads that level-building is just not fun (koffkoffENIXkoffkoff). I really can't think of a bad thing to bring up about this title, other than the sometimes odd hit detection. But the positives stand out so starkly that I have no choice but to give this game a 10. If you have a Game Boy and have any love for Zelda clones, especially GOOD ones like this, buy this game IMMEDIATELY. If you have a Game Boy emulator, you should have already beaten this thing!

Nintendo Logic: Cybernetics were perfected in the old Square days! And yet a few scientific facts were unknown back then. For instance, how does putting robotic legs on a Chocobo enable him to traverse the seas? Wouldn't the metal just rust out? I'd hate to get stuck in the middle of that ocean, what with all the pesky fire-breathing seahorses about. If you have the technology to create cybernetic implants, why not FINS, for crying out loud? Or better yet, a helicopter a la Inspector Gadget? You could go around in your Choco-copter dropping depth charges on those hapless sea horses, or even fly right up to the Mana Tree without having to go through the castle! Final Fantasy's always had some weird stuff going on with their technology...

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 03/26/00, Updated 03/26/00

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