Review by FFM

Reviewed: 04/25/03 | Updated: 07/29/03

[This review was written by a Final Fantasy Fanboy…..then was deleted by a Gamefaqs Moderator]

Tis a great story is of enormous, fire-breathing dragons. Men of great valor that stand up to any challenge. Mages the control the elements with unforgiving power . A group of warriors chosen by destiny to conquer the world of darkness and return justice to the world . Who are these warriors? Well, you decided their names at the beginning…..

Welcome to the world of Final Fantasy. Many gamers have been down these all-to-familiar roads before. But, a lot have never traveled the abandoned trail now known as Final Fantasy 1 . Most have just ignored this forgotten classic, and just pass it up. For starters, Final Fantasy 1 is not an interactive movie. It doesn’t have any elaborate character classes to choose from. It’s as basic as they get in terms of RPG’s. So, how did such a basic, down to earth RGP amass such stature? It probably lies the algorithms, the structure of all RPG’s.

What’s an algorithm FFM?

A step-by-step problem-solving procedure, especially an established, recursive computational procedure for solving a problem in a finite number of steps.

So….yeah……that’s an algorithm. An algorithm, in laymens terms, is the way the fighting engine calculates damage/controls all other mathematical functions of a videogame.

So, where are you trying to get with all this mathematical mumbo-jumbo?

In the world of basic RPGs, most all the graphics are the same. Nothing new comes to the sound section very often. So, they needed such things as algorithms to separate them from the pack. This is where Final Fantasy 1 differentiates itself from the group. It was one of first role-playing-games where you didn’t have to spend long times in your room, leveling up. It had its challenges, but didn’t make the challenges ridiculously hard. Monsters were well balanced and thought out.

But, I’ve heard all of this before

Have you ever seen it executed flawlessly into a single cart? The single cart that started the one of the largest gaming franchises in the gaming community.

The premise, like every other RPG at the time is: There’s a big, evil guy that’s destroying everything; stop him. Personally choose your valiant warriors at the beginning, which include: Fighter, Black Belt, White/Black/Red Mage, thief. As they all have their ups and down. A fighter will maim all in his way. While a mages will mostly be used as supporting characters. After you’ve thought up what team you’re going to use to eradicate evil from the world, your journey begins.

You’ve got the basic gameplay elements here. When you’re in a battle, a dialog box will appear telling you what commands you can perform. Attack will cause your guy to attack for damage. While magic will let you choose from many spells. The magic use has a cap on it too this time. You can only have a maximum of 9 uses per level. There’s 8 levels of spells to use. You gain usage points by gaining EXP. This leads to what common sense has been telling you all along; EXP gains you levels. You then use the levels you’ve gained to strengthen your characters attributes.

Final Fantasy doesn’t make it a priority to train, but it’s to your advantage to do so. The dungeons are plain out hard at times. They have no save points. Mazes are abundant, a lot of treasure is hidden for you to find. Getting killed even once will result in you having to start the whole process over again. The challenge factor is pretty high in some points, but they manage to keep it interesting.

They should’ve took the hint and keep the graphics interesting too. While they’re not bad at all, they used the same models over a couple of times. A wolf and gray wolf look essentially the same. The characters aren’t rehashed, though. Their weapons are even different colors. All the levels have different textures to them. From smoldering, rocky, hot lava to the middle of a flying fortress. You got a lot of variety in the way the dungeons look.

As we all know, the NES controller isn’t hard to use. Final Fantasy one only uses a few buttons on the controller. Wait, there’s only a few buttons to begin with. As with most RPG’s, most of your time will be spent navigating menus and the such. While navigating your ears should be more than delighted to hear a catchy battle theme. While essentially the theme never changes, it’s still good. And, yes, after you win, you get the well known victory theme too.

Final Verdict

Graphics = 9
Gameplay = 10
Controls = 9
Sound = 10

Final = 9

Square laid it all on the line after the bombing of other NES games. That’s why it’s called “Final Fantasy”. Incase anyone ever asks you that. Anyways, if you already don’t own Final Fantasy….get it now. It’s more than a classic to say the least.

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

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