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Video Game / Final Fantasy Explorers

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Crystals — mystic shards with the power of the stars. Through their grace did all life evolve imbued with souls. In time, humankind learned to harness energy from crystals, surpassing other lifeforms. During just such an era, brave souls tackled unexplored lands and battled mighty foes in search of new crystals. The people called them: Explorers.

A spin-off of the monster-huntingly popular Final Fantasy series.

The adventure revolves around a four person party of Explorers from the village of Libertas as they venture to the mysterious island of Amostra, which houses an abundance of Crystals. The one problem? Those crystals are guarded by immensely powerful creatures. The Explorers must hunt down these monsters in order to take their crystals, using weapons and armor crafted from the monsters themselves in order to progress.

And if this concept is sounding a little bit familiar to you, you are not alone in thinking that.

Directed by Atsushi Hashimoto, Final Fantasy Explorers features epic boss fights, tons of loot, and the trademark Job System, as well as the ability to transform into famous Final Fantasy characters such as Cecil, Cloud, and Lightning.

This game provides examples of:

  • Aerith and Bob: This Nintendo Direct shows two people fighting side by side: Aerith and Josh.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Picking up an item when you're already maxed out on it automatically converts it to gil.
  • Applied Phlebotinum: Crystals, which are used for about every technological advance ranging from crafting to battle to airship travel. The plot of the game is basically you're an explorer on a newly discovered island full of the stuff.
  • Artificial Stupidity: Monsters on your side are very stupid. For what they are (distractions if you have a class that shouldn't be tanking, until they inevitably die) they are alright, but in this type of game, they spend a lot of the battle knocked out. Perhaps the biggest failing of the monsters is the fact that they do not know how to respond to eidolons' rages. Players know to back off, but monsters will stay in, absorbing the hit.
  • Attack! Attack! Attack!: Becomes a somewhat valid strategy with certain builds - however, like a monster-hunting game, it will punish this kind of behaviour, meaning you have to know when to back off.
  • Awful Truth: The Eilodons you've been fighting? Yeah, turns out they're trying to keep humans from killing the planet by overusing Crystal Energy.
  • Badass Adorable: The game's chibified art style practically guarantees this.
  • The Beastmaster: Defeated enemies can be added to the player's party, assisting in battle.
    • "Beastmaster" is also a job you can aquire, which specializes in taming monsters.
  • Boring, but Practical: Regen. You'll probably find it your highest ranked ability and garnering the most mutations due to its somewhat low cost as well as the fact that major attacks usually are spread far enough apart that you can actually recover more health with Regen than Curaga. Best part is, you can use it with any class.
  • Canon Foreigner: Amateratsu is a new Eidolon created specifically for this game.
  • Captured Super-Entity: The "Encase" Crystal Surge can be used on Eidolons reduced to the last of their HP to capture them in magicite, thus allowing you channel their power. Captured Eidolons can also be used in crafting items.
  • Character Customization: You can pick the gender, skin color, eye color, and hair style for your character. And that isn't set in stone: you can freely change any aspect of your character (except for their name, which can't be changed, and gender, which costs money) anytime while you're in Libertas.
    • You can also rename your custom skills.
  • Co-Op Multiplayer: Up to four players can explore the same area together.
  • Damage Over Time: Poison and Burning. You can actually do this as well.
  • Death Is a Slap on the Wrist: Dying reduces your remaining time to complete the mission. In most cases, this is a slap on the wrist... however this can really stack up, especially on the ninja kill.
  • Developer's Foresight: Most bosses will turn around or use an area of effect attack (Ramuh's judgement bolt, for example) if you run behind them. Alexander, a Stationary Boss, can be exploited by this - it looks like there is an area wherein you can run behind him up a tree root and tool off on him there, and he won't use a lot of his damaging attacks. If you do this, Alexander will use a "Tail slam" attack that will send you flying and hurt a lot. Odin, whose hitbox is a large rectangle, will also command Sleipnir to kick you away if you do this too much.
  • Energy Weapon: The Magitek Laser attack for Machinists fires a beam of magical energy.
  • Equipment Upgrade: You can boost your equipment's stats or add extra traits by using the materials you've collected.
  • Equipment-Based Progression: Explorers don't gain character levels; they're dependent entirely on their equipment. Averted for monsters.
  • Excuse Plot: Once upon a time an explorer crash landed on an island he was trying to get to, and then he stuck around to fight monsters and stuff.
  • Fixed Damage Attack: Cactuars still use "1,000 Needles", and Blue Mages can even learn it as a spell. But what's more impressive is the "1,000 Needles Mode" crystal surge, which causes ALL of your attacks to deal 1,000 damage per hit (10,000, if you land a critical). The downside is that while it's active, you also take 1,000 damage per hit.
    • On higher level missions, where getting hit can result in damage exceeding 1000, this is actually a benefit.
  • Gender Bender: You can change your character's gender for a small fee. Also, you're not restricted to using trances that match your character's gender.
  • "Get Back Here!" Boss: Dryad is this, as is Abherrant Alexander.
    • Gilgamesh does this as well.
  • The Gunslinger: The Machinist class uses firearms, from one-handed pistols to BFGs.
  • Gotta Catch Them All: In addition to being able to tame monsters, you can "encase" Eilodons to borrow their powers in battle, or to create rare weapons and armor. Not to mention all the Blue Mage abilities you can learn.
  • Hit-and-Run Tactics: Perhaps the best strategy, especially with ranged classes.
  • Hitbox Dissonance: In your favour on Leviathan, actually. It looks like you're pretty far from it, but depending on its location, your attacks will actually connect despite it looking like your character is at least a meter and a half away with a melee weapon.
  • Item Crafting: As expected from a Monster Hunter-style game, most of your equipment are forged from materials you've collected.
  • Joke Item: Excalipoor returns once again. Subverted in that it doesn't seem to have it's infamous "one damage per hit" effect from the main series.
  • Job System: The Final Fantasy staple. Although the player can swap skills over from other jobs, using said skills outside of their job doubles the MP cost.
  • Kamehame Hadouken: The Aura Cannon attack for Monks fires a stream of energy from the user's fist.
  • Kung-Fu Wizard: A knuckle-using character with spells equipped becomes this.
  • Legacy Boss Battle: Gilgamesh and Omega Weapon appear as endgame bosses.
  • Limit Break: After accruing enough Resonance Power, you gain the ability to use powerful Crystal Surge abilities. When in a Trance state, Trance Surge abilities also open up.
  • Luck-Based Mission: Your Crystal Surges are selected at random, and several sub-quests require you to trigger specific surges.
  • Mage Marksman: Give a Machinist some spells and they become this.
  • Magic Knight: While some classes are more proficient in magic than others, all of them can use magic. The Red Mage, in particular, continues its proud tradition of combining magic and swordsmanship in addition to flaunting its signature "Chainspell" skill, which lets it cast spells in rapid succession.
  • Magitek: A staple of the Final Fantasy series, some aspects of civilization in the world of Explorers are technological in nature. Some attacks, like "Magitek Laser" and "Magitek Lodestar", utilize Magitek; while some monsters, classified as "mechanoids", are similarly technological.
  • Monster Allies: Atmaleths collected from monsters can be taken to the Monster Lab to be converted into allies that can fight by your side.
  • Mythology Gag: There are a number of references to other games in the series.
    • You can gain schematics which allow you to get armor based on the various characters of the series such as Onion Knight, Terra, Cloud, Sephiroth, Squall and others. You can even get Magicite versions of some of the characters, allowing you to use their Signature Move. The moggle that gives the schematics usually references the world they came from.
    • Certain quests that give materials for the cameo outfits reference characters in their description of the questgiver, such as the questgiver of the mission that gives Jenova Cells alluding to Sephiroth. Other times, the quest itself is a reference, such as the mission that gives a key component of the Onion Knight equipment requiring the player to slay dragons note 
    • Outside of the explicit references, the Gartian Empire seems to model it's military uniforms after the Judges of Ivalice.
  • No Cure for Evil: Averted. Fenrir and Bahamut drain, but the recovery is so minimal you probably wouldn't even notice. Alexander, however, will cure notable chunks of health if you take too long.
  • Power at a Price: Dark Knights will, if charging darkness up, be able to use their own health to fuel their attacks, stealing defense from the enemy. The "Sacrifice" ability also deals heavy damage but it takes a chunk of your health. You're able to pretty much undo this if you have Regen on before or during this.
  • Power Copying: The Blue Mage's signature skill, "Learn", allows them to copy attacks from monsters. You only need to see them - unlike other games.
  • Power-Up Letdown: Zig-zagged. Unlocking the Beastmaster class requires you to have made 20 monsters - and the beastmaster has the power to make Atlamiths drop guaranteed. By the time, you get this, you probably won't even need to craft a new monster since you'll already have a great reliable crew yourself. However, Atlamiths are also required to make accessories, which you do need....
  • Randomly Drops: Fortunately a little more fair than other examples of this trope. Subquest rewards can even award you with a good drop, and given that these don't require a five-to-ten minute process, it's easy to exploit if it doesn't give you the one you want. Good luck doing this with field drops though.
    • Also remedied in that this is the special ability with the Thief - the Thief makes it so that rarer items drop more often, and can get an extra roll with the random number generator with "Steal".
    • Atmaliths are this... but if you have a Beastmaster and inflict the final blow with Tame, it drops guaranteed.
  • Stationary Boss: Alexander - however Abherrant Alexander MOVES.
  • Super Mode:
    • Crystal Surges, which can be activated by using abilities in rapid succession, gives a variety of benefits like elemental effects or increased defenses for a duration.
    • The "Trance" ability allows players to channel the power of Eidolons they have captured, such as Ifrit or Shiva; or transform into a character from previous Final Fantasy games, such as Cloud, Yuna, Squall, Terra, or Lightning. Doing so also opens up access to their signature abilities as Trance Surges, such as Cloud's Omnislash or Shiva's Diamond Dust.
  • Take That!: The Vuvuzela item helps you aggro enemy monsters.
  • Timed Mission: Each quest is on a timer, and reviving after KO will take off a few minutes unless you use a revival item or skill.
  • Virtual Paper Doll: Equipped weapons and armor can be seen on your character
  • Wake-Up Call Boss: It wouldn't be a Monster Hunter-esque game without a couple of these!
    • By the time you fight Dryad, if you haven't learned to watch out for the important game alerts (Very Bad Breath) as well as what to do when there is a red circle underneath you, you will get stuck.
    • Diablos and Bahamut are this, for multiple reasons. Diablos uses an attack that starts drawing you towards it, telling you that if you really haven't gotten good with mobility and conserving your AP, now's a good time to start. Bahamut is, like Phoenix, a boss that alternates between two stances: Flying and Ground. In addition, Megaflare will draw you towards it - meaning you really really have to pay attention from now on.
    • Amaterasu to a lesser extent - if only to teach you that yes, when you lock onto targets, you can cycle through them. (The game actually doesn't really tell you you can "Break" pieces like in Monster Hunter)
    • Some bosses can be beaten easily by just pummeling them to death and going all out aggro, especially if you get a good set of weapons early or upgrade a good weapon into an overpowered monstrosity. Odin punishes this kind of behaviour with Zantentsuken. Think he'll just charge at you? Nope - if you're close to him, he'll spin around you and get you with it anyway.
    • Gilgamesh and Omega - unlocked after Therion. Sure, Therion was a tough battle, but Therion was presented as the Final Boss - so of course you expect a challenge. Gilgamesh and Omega, however, true to their nature, will absolutely wreck you and punish overly-aggressive behaviour, in case Odin hadn't punished you enough already.
  • Wide-Open Sandbox: Of a sort. It is possible to leave town without getting a quest from the desk. Doing so automatically triggers a quest called "Roam the World" where your only objective is to return to town via the menu and has a time limit of 60 minutes, which is plenty of time to explore the island and gather materials or do subquests. However, you still cannot access areas that are blocked off with the purple haze.