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Reviews Comments: An expectation lowerer Final Fantasy I game review by Devious Recital

Yes, yes, game that saved Squaresoft, kicked off one of the most game successful franchises ever, blah, blah, blah. That doesn't mean it holds up today. Here's why.

The best thing I can say about this game is that it has really nice graphics for an NES era game. The character sprites are colourful and detailed, and all the weapon types and many spell types have their own individual animations, which I find impressive. The environments looks spectacular, though there's not much to see on the battle screen, sadly.

Gameplay does not fare so well. Though you are allowed a variety of classes (revolutionary as it may be), these classes are terribly unbalanced. The red mage, for example, expensive though he may be, renders black and white mages rather pointless, because red mages are not only much more durable and physically apt, but they can also cherry pick the best spells from both classes. Though there are certain spells he cannot learn, the ones he can are almost always the most useful. Thieves are basically underpowered Fighters, and, until undergoing class upgrade halfway through the game, worthless, unlike the fighter who is useful throughout. And Black Belts are perhaps the most broken of all, able to do massive damage without purchasing anything except the occasional status buff. Other than the classes, there is the atrocious spell charge system, which guarantees you won't be using your precious magic on anything but bosses, and also the large number of obstuctive glitches in this game, even going so far as to have spells that do nothing. Which means that you've wasted your gold irrevocably.

The story is paper thin, which is actually a huge problem. Considering the plot they were able to give Final Fantasy II (regardless of said game's quality), they could have done much more with this game. However, it feels unrewarding to sift through countless random battles for a few featureless player avatars. It doesn't work.

However, I will admit that the music sounds nice, at least. Overall, I couldn't finish the game, but thankfully, the Dawn of Souls remake makes it playable. It doesn't fix the balance issues (entirely) or the plot, but it replaces spell charges with conventional MP, fixes the glitches and as a whole, is presented much nicer as a modern day package. For me, it is the definitive version of FFI.


  • lu127
  • 1st Jan 12
I think the PSP remake fixed most of the problems, other than the story.
  • marcellX
  • 1st Jan 12
That doesn't mean it holds up today.
Considering the plot they were able to give Final Fantasy II (regardless of said game's quality), they could have done much more with this game.

Time moves forward, of course it wont hold today, just like the first Zelda or Mario game don't hold up today due to the simple reasons of Technology Marches On, Early Installment Weirdness, Seinfeld Is Unfunny, etc. I also don't understand your reasoning that a later game is proof that an older one could had been better.
  • DeviousRecital
  • 1st Jan 12
I am aware of these, but for the record, this is the only Final Fantasy game I've completed thusfar, and one of two that I've played.

A later game on the same console. They had all the memory capacity and technology necessary to make a more intricate story, but did not.
  • marcellX
  • 1st Jan 12
Look at how long does console last until a new model comes, and in all that time how much does the technology improve. For example look at the Prince of Persia original trilogy and how much difference there is between each game despite all being from PS 2. Developers learn from the games they make, that's why the newer ones improve the old ones, that is also not taking into account that as you know the company was going under and this was gonna be their last game, with the success of FF 1 they probably had more money and resources to work with when they were making FF 2.
  • VeryMelon
  • 29th Jan 12
Having just finished the game, I agree with these criticisms, except I don't care for how thin the plot was, since it is the first game.
  • judasmartel
  • 12th Apr 12
The Dawn of Souls remake is ridiculously broken. That is all.

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