Review by Default64

Reviewed: 11/13/06

Final Fantasy X: The first Final Fantasy game on PS2 and it is great!

Final Fantasy X is the first Final fantasy game that was released for Playstation 2 back in 2001. This game is considered to be among one of my top favorite video games of all time. The story, graphics, voice acting, ALL of it is just simply fantastic. Square Soft (now known as Square Enix) simply has done an amazing with this game.

Story: 9/10

The story in this game is actually pretty good. It begins with the main character named Tidus. He’s a bliztball player for the Zanarkand Abes and is considered the star of the team. However, he just sees himself as a shadow underneath his father who turned out to be an even better bliztball player. As he’s playing a bliztball game, the city of Zanarkand gets attacked by a deadly beast called “Sin”. During this attack you’ll meet another character by the name of Auron whom is considered the best character in the game. For short time, he’ll team up with you and then during the attack you some how get sucked inside of Sin. Basically, after getting sucked up inside of Sin and left stranded on some Island. He later gets rescued and learns that he is 1000 years into the future. After he learns this, the ship he is on gets attacked by Sin, and he floats to another island. This is where all of your other characters will join up with you, and you start your adventure here. Basically the story is all about getting rid of sin, however as you progress through the story is actually has it’s turns in twists.

As you progress through the game, the characters also get developed more and you will enjoy loving most of them… Auron for example, is the most developed character and is considered the best character in the game, not just by me but by many other people as well…

Gameplay: 10/10

Without a doubt, gameplay is the best aspect of this game. Unlike other fantasy games that used the "Active time battle" system or ATB for short, it uses the "Turn-Based" system. Instead of waiting a short amount of time just to attack, you're given turns when to attack. The game will show a little list of which characters and monsters will attack first. If Tidus's icon is on top of the list you will attack or heal first. If Yuna's icon is displayed underneath him, she will attack next. Of course speed will affect how many turns you can have before a monsters turn. For example if you cast haste on Yuna, she will be given more turns, but if "slow" is casted then she will be given less turns. The turn-based system actually does a great job on its own and is considered the best feature of the game.

Also, instead of "leveling up" your characters 1 to 99 as you're use to in other final fantasy games. You're given "sphere levels" after getting exp from fiends and bosses. There is no limit to how many sphere levels you can get. The sphere levels are used to activate nodes which completely covers the sphere grid. Oh yes, the sphere grid, you'll basically get most of your abilities and stats from here. Although, confusing as hell at first, it's actually pretty simple.

All the characters are connected to the same sphere grid, but they all have their own "sections" until later on the game you will be able to access other characters "sections". The more "sphere levels" you have, the more you can move about your sphere grid. In other words, if you have one sphere level and you're on a node, you can spend that sphere level to move on to the next node. By activating this node, you'll either give your characters new attacks, magics, abilities, and improved stats such as plus 3 strength, etc. This will make you think of how you will improve your characters and which grid you will activate. Although, if you decide to completely activate every single node on the grid, all your characters will pretty much be the same.

You also have the ability to summon Aeons which are basically summons in this game. Unfortunately, Yuna can only summon them, but that really doesn’t change anything. However, what is different is the fact that you can play as the Aeons themselves now instead of watching 1-2 minute scenes of summons wrecking havoc. What is even better is the fact that the Aeons even level up and you can give Aeons new abilities which you definitely will have a tendency to do. The Aeons make battles more enjoyable and of course quick. What do I mean by that? I mean if you simply want to get exp in the fastest way possible, simply summon an Aeon to get rid of the fiend as quickly as possible. However as you progress through the game, you can pretty much dispatch any fiend in about the same turns as it would take if you played as a Aeon.

Graphics: 9/10

The graphics are actually fantastic considering this game was released in Playstation’s 2 early days. The characters designs are good in which everyone has their own unique clothes and facial expressions that basically… well looks good on them. However, that is only a small feature compared to what was shown with the background of all the areas you’ll be exploring such as Islands, forests, snowy mountains, towns, ruined cities, etc… The CGI or FMV scenes are also something to take note of… How do I explain this? Each and every FMV scene is “sweet” and “awesome” and it uses most of the PS2’s potential. There is also hardly any lag time in the game and if there is you’ll probably won’t be able to notice it. Of course there is loading times but it’s only when moving from area to area and it’s very short.

The In-battle graphics are also pretty good as well. The way each character attacks and the magic attack designs are simply something that basically wants you to perform it over and over again. For example over limits… If your character of Aeon is in an Overlimit state, you’re given the ability to perform a very powerful attack. The design of these attacks just make you want watch it over again… Can anyone say “Mega Flare”? Not much to say about the graphics, except it’s simply amazing, it’s even greater considering the time this game was released around. I give the game at-least some credit for that.

Sound/Music: 10/10

I can describe it with just one word… Wow! The very moment you start the game up you will come up with the opening intro which has a very nice background music. Nice piano playing and it goes well with the scene. I actually sat there with the controller in my hand just listening to the intro for quite some time until I decided to start the game. However, that’s not the only song track that’s good in this game… There are many others that are just as good, if not even better! The music in this game is indeed one of the best features this game has to offer.

Also, this game introduces voice acting for the very first time in any final fantasy game and it actually does a great job. The voice actors do a great job voicing their characters, although some of the voices will somehow tend to annoy you or just creep you out. A certain “guado’s” voice will just make you want to kill him early on in the game and Tidus’s voice is annoying at times only when he is whining… Which I can only respond with…. STOP WHINING! His voice will sometimes make you just kill his character in a battle on purpose… Of course there is the infamous “laughing scene” that Tidus and Yuna are involved in that will literally leave a scar on you for quite some time. However, I still love their characters so their voices don’t really affect my opinion of them. Other than that, the voice acting and sound are just perfect, there is nothing else to describe it as but perfect…

Replay ability: 8/10

This game will make you come back for more. If it’s not now, then it will be later, I can guarantee it. When you beat the game the first time, you will come back to play it for a second time… then for a third time, then a fourth time… Of course you’re probably going to get sick of it if you play it 10 times in a row but just space it out a bit. The game is always fun every time you play it. However if don’t consider to do anything that much different the first time you played the game. The second time around, it’s pretty much going to be the same except the fact that you have a grasp at your surroundings and battles that come ahead. Without a doubt, nothing beats the first time playing this game… Just makes you want to get Amnesia and play the game “again”.

Overall Review: 9/10
Sadly, I wish I could give this game a 10 but apparently the game is not perfect but simply amazing. The story does a great job developing the characters and giving some twists. The game-play is great in almost every single aspect of the game. The graphics are like “OH MY GOD” greatness, considering it looks more like modern games now even though it was released practically 5 years ago. You’ll get addicted to the music very quickly the moment you start the game in which you will just listen to the same background music in a scene over and over again. Although some of the characters voices are annoying and will just creep you out at some times, you’ll get use to them and actually like the voice acting. Hey, it’s the first final fantasy to have voice-acting that turns out good, so I give it some credit there. The replay ability is high but don’t expect much the second time around as there is not that much stuff you can do differently. However, the gameplay and story alone will just make you coming back to play the game even after you haven’t played the game in quite a long time.

Now, you’re given the decision to either rent or buy. Well this is an amazing game, so buy it. Right now you can get the game less than twenty bucks (in U.S that is) and that’s just simply a great deal to have for a simply great game. Final Fantasy X keeps up the series with the good reputation since is an amazing game…

I rate this game 9 out of 10

Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

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