First things first: At least in the GBA translation, this game is more or less and Affectionate Parody
of the JRPG clichés and plots of the time. If you're looking for something serious like Final Fantasy VII
or Diablo II
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.
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
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.