Reviews: Final Fantasy V

Final Fantasy V (Advance): There's more to it than Gilgamesh


First things first: At least in the GBA translation, this game is more or less and Affectionate Parody of the JRPG clich├ęs and plots of the time. If you're looking for something serious like Final Fantasy VII or Diablo II, FF5 isn't for you. If you don't mind wackiness and ridiculous plot devices, then you're probably going to like FF5.

That being said, the plot exists... barely. It's mostly just weak excuses to move into the next part of the map. However, I've played Final Fantasy IV halfway through, and I've got to say that the only difference here is that FF5 seems to be aware of its Excuse Plot and therefore plays it for laughs most of the time.


FF5 only has four playable characters at a time, and there's no swapping between people, ever. Whether this is a weakness or a strength depends on how you look at it. On one hand, if you really dislike someone, you'll have to drag them along nonetheless. On the other, it means that each character manages to get fairly much development, since screen time is only split five ways.

The supporting cast ranges from forgettable (the King of Tycoon) to hilariously over-the-top (Gilgamesh, Ghido).


In a game with a self-conscious Excuse Plot, the gameplay is beyond vital to the overall quality; I really liked the Job System's FF5 incarnation, which made the game for me. I'm kinda sad that there isn't a Dark Knight class and that the Dragoon is ridiculously underpowered, but on the whole the system is really cool. I like how every character has a different sprite for every job, which makes switching them look cool in addition to changing gameplay. There's little micromanagement (unless you really want to start comparing stats), and lots of munchkin potential.

Something that annoyed me was that you can't switch turns in combat, which sucks.


It's a Nobuo Uematsu track. Enough said.


If you liked Final Fantasy IX, you're going to like Final Fantasy V. Must-play for 2D-RPG fans. I know I'll be hated for this, but I preferred this to FF7.

Four stars out of five.