Final Fantasy VI - Review

Not as perfect as people think...

By: Jade Falcon

Review Breakdown
   Battle System 9
   Interface 9
   Music/Sound 8
   Originality 8
   Plot 5
   Localization 4
   Replay Value 2
   Visuals 7
   Difficulty Easy-Medium
   Time to Complete

50-100 hrs.


Final Fantasy 6/3

   Square has made three Final Fantasy games on each console it has developed for, the games evolving from worst to best (except the PSX ones, but that's a different story.). Final Fantasy VI was the last game for the Super Nintendo, and the best one. Of course, the "goodness" of a game is a relative thing. I really have not been a fan of the SNES FFs, but FF6 was the best in my opinion. FF6 cannot compare to today's games, but that would be an incorrect comparison. Anyway, before I ramble on further, let's get to the rest of the review.

   As with 90% of the Final Fantasies released, the battle system is good old ATB with virtually the same menus for each character, except for each character's special ability. All characters have the capability to cast every single spell in the game by using Espers. Espers, while equipped on a person, allows them to learn the spells it has and the ability to summon it.

   As with all other FF games except for FF8, all the menus in FF6 are compact and not very numerous. The way the menus are set up in FF6 are the way I would like to have all the menus set up in every RPG. This is surprising due to the number of characters in the game. However, the characters are either good or bad. There are only a few characters who seem to be the main characters (Locke, Terra), and some that just seem thrown in for the heck of it (Gogo, Umaro). However, each character's stories are easy to follow and you know how each character feels.

Hey, I know him from somewhere...
Simple Yet Effective Summons  

   FF6 has one of the best soundtracks, despite the primitive hardware it was composed on. Some of the more memorable ones are the two overworld themes, the Veldt, and the battle with Kefka. Sure, the game has its share of not-so-good tracks, but the good ones greatly overshadow the not-so-good ones. As for the sound effects, it seemed that the same sound effect was used for numerous things. Back when the game was made, the sound effects were top-notch, but there was little variety to them.

   FF6 was the first game in the string of characters learning magic spells from "items", Espers. FF6 also had the largest crew of playable characters for a long time, the grand total being fourteen. Every character had their own story, with the exception of two of the characters. You know virtually nothing about two of them.

   I absolutely hate plots with lots of idiots in them. The main antagonist was a dolt, as were several of your playable characters. The plot also moved slowly, even staying fixed on one event for up to ten hours at once on your first play through. (Okay, so I had a hard time when my party split into three. So what?) At other times, you had no clue where to go, or where the place you were supposed to go was located. Those things annoy me greatly. I understand that others like plots like that, but they aren't my cup of tea.

   Most games are not well-translated. FF6 is not an exception. The dialogue is unbelieveable that it had me laughing through some parts of it. (Note, I laughed because of how stupid it sounded, not because it was actually funny.) Example, from Kefka's script at the beginning: "Phooey! Emperor's Gestahl's stupid orders! EDGAR, you pinhead! Why do you have to live in the middle of nowhere? These recon jobs are the pits! Ahem...there's SAND on my boots!" Some people may find this funny, but I find it ridiculous and stupid. At least most, if any, major cultural references were removed from the game.

I wanna sleep some more!
Our friend Mog outside an inn  

   I recently just completed the game. Would I play it through again? Heck no. I started to play it three years ago on an emulator, playing it off-and-on, stopping when you first go to Vector. When FFA came out, I bought it. After I bought it, almost a year of on-and-off playing allowed me to finish it, and I was only motivated to find out what the system file had in store, and that wasn't much. I may pick it up in a few years, when I want to reminisce or have nothing else to do, and play it a little more, but other than that, I will probably never play it again. Oh well. *shrug*

For 1994 graphics, FF6's whooped other games' behinds. For now's graphics, they are laughable. The summons used to be awe-inspiring and the overhead views when you were on an airship were groundbreaking. Still, the characters were badly deformed and didn't look a thing like their little pictures on the submenu. However, since they were quite excellent and awe-inspiring for their time.

FF6 can be the hardest or easiest game you've played. For me, it was easy because I like to level up lots. For those of you who don't, be ready for the ride of a lifetime because I even had trouble with some bosses after leveling up for hours at a time.

Bravo, bravo.
Altogether now... 1, 2, 3!  

On average, getting to the final boss can take a good 60 hours. Yes, this is one of the longest games that has ever been made. If you look for all the goodies, level up everyone, and make everyone learn every spell possible, as well as all the characters' special abilities, look for a 100+-hour adventure.

Many RPGamers consider FF6 as the greatest game ever made. (My personal favorite is CT.) I do not share that same philosophy. Sure, the game is quite good, but at times it can be boring and quite annoying, especially due to the ridiculously high encounter rate. Don't waste upwards of $100 on FF6. The best way to play it if you haven't already is to find an emulator and a rom of this game.

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