The Final Fantasy XIII series is pretty controversial. I'm a fan of it myself, but I can see why it gets the hate. The writing is not perfect and there are plenty of cheesy lines. However, if you have a good tolerance for Narm you'll find that, like the rest of the series, Lightning Returns has some good character development and an interesting plot. The story of Lightning Returns is not quite as good as either XIII or XIII-2, in my opinion, at least partly because of the open-world nature of the game, in which sidequests can be completed in any order, and focus on sidequests. The sidequests are hit-or-miss and all too often rely on cheap tricks to get you to care about what happens, but some of them are genuinely touching and others are really funny. Also, unlike XIII and XIII-2, Lightning Returns doesn't add any interesting characters other than Lumina. However, it does a good job of developing the previously established characters, wrapping up the loose ends left by the previous games. The character development for these characters is not as major as the games in which they were established, but what development there was was good. The only thing that bothered me was that Sazh didn't have enough screentime. The very ending, starting from the final boss onward, was surprisingly excellent and well-written. Overall, Lightning Returns does a good job of concluding the series in a satisfying way.
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