Early Review : Dissidia: Final Fantasy

It’s been a while now since the original Final Fantasy was released. It’s been a while since players worldwide took over the role as Warriors of Light and defended the world against the master plan of Garland.

It’s been a while since players played as Cecil trying to make sense of his corrupt kingdom and his, seemingly loss loss best friend Kain.

It’s been a while since players watched Kefka taint the water system and poison Cyan’s family.

A while since players read: “Because you’re a puppet”

A while since the introduction of the “Gunblade”

A while since Alexander fought Bahamut

And a while since Spira was freed from Sin.

But now Square-Enix is allowing players to live out their reveries and play as the characters from Final Fantasy to Final Fantasy X. Dissdia: Final Fantasy is Square-Enix newest game to be released in America “tba 2009” and recently released in Japan; but, that has not stopped this FF fan from getting his hands on a copy and playing through the language barrier. From Golbez to Ultimecia to Cloud to Exdeath, each main character and villain from the I-X are included in the game that aims to change the ‘fighting game’ genre.

Dissidia is a beauty of a game filled with characters from many games past smashed into one rock em’ sock em’, high adrenaline, plot driven game. Focusing on the world of the original Final Fantasy Chaos and Cosmos (the goddess of harmony) are continuing their eternal war against each other. In an effort to gain ground over Cosmos, Chaos, summons a team of villains forcing Cosmos to summon the opposing heroes. A battle ensues and all are scattered to different worlds and soon on a quest to obtain the mysterious crystals, in an effort to defeat Chaos once and for all.

The player is immediately immersed into a game that is full of rich story and different personalities; the player initially has the option to play as one of the ten main heroes: Warrior of Light, Frion, Onion Knight, Cecil, Bartz, Terra, Cloud, Squall, Zidane and Tidus. Each character has their own story mode in which the player must move across a chess like board to get to the round boss while attempting to use as few steps as possible; maintaining Destiny Points (DP) for a bonus at the end. The story focuses on the character trying to find their worlds Crystal for Cosmos and in their journey encounter other heroes and villains. While the story is in Japanese the general idea is not lost, quickly it is revealed that the heroes are somewhat weary about their journey, unsure of what may follow and the villains begin to form teams, one for domination and one for destruction. The opposing teams often come close to blows with one another in sequences many fans will just be happy to see. The sight of Heroes from different games conversing and the same for villains is enough to make the biggest FF gush with nostalgia

The battle system is more strategic than any other FF game so far. It consist of players doing BP (Brave Points) damage to one another stealing and gaining and then utilizing a HP (Health Points) move to do damage equal to the number of BP the player has at the time. If a character goes below zero BP they go into “break mode” and the other character gains the BP in a cache. Every character has twelve moves they can use, 6 BP and 6 HP, in addition the battle system is 100% 3D allowing for freedom in the map from jumping, gliding, running on walls and destructible Enrolments. The battle system is further punctuated by the use of summons which do different things depending on who is summoned. For example the Ifrit summon will raise the summoners BP points x3 while Ramuh will hinder the opponents ability to summon; furthermore most summons have two classes: Automatic and Manual. In the case of my example above Ifrit Auto will raise the summoners BP x3 when the summoner breaks the enemy; while Manual can be done at any time.

The real bread and butter of Dissdia is the complete freedom of the battle, in versus mode the character pics who they want to play as, who they want to fight against, what map they want to fight at and the BGM you want to play during the battle. each game has 2 songs e.g. VII has One Winged Angel and the Those Who Fight Further. the second song is a unique arranged mix of a song just for Dissidia. Later on you the player has the chance to unlock a third song straight from the OST in VII’s case it’s the “Opening/Bombing Mission”.

There are still very traditional aspects of a Final Fantasy game Incorporated in Dissidia. For example the player has the ability to equip their characters with swords; shields, hats, rods armor, accessories ect. This increases stats just like any normal FF game.

In battle each character has an EX mode in which they can “transform” into a more powerful version of themselves. For example Terra can transform into her Esper form, some characters have lesser transformations like Cloud and Squall who merely gain their ultimate weapon. In EX mode (achieved by collecting EX orbs dropped during battle) characters can perform an EX Burst (similar to limit breaks) a special move that inflicts BP damage to raise the BP total and ending with HP damage. Each EX Burst uses a command (e.g. Zidane must rapidly press O, Cecil must input a series of button inputs) and how successful that command is put it will determine the strength of the Ex-burst move.

Dissdia doesn’t stop there though; there’s a Ad-Hoc mode that allows player on player battle; however, there is also an offline lobby in which you could play against another players “ghost”. If you play in Ad-Hoc against someone their battle techniques and traits are recorded into the game and then afterwords the player can fight against a very like-minded ‘Ghost’ that will fight much like the non-present player. Combine that with a full equipment shop, Extras shop and the ability to not only record; but, edit recorded battles and Dissidia is a game you won’t be putting down any time soon after you buy it.

The only draw back is hoping the American version isn’t dumbed down; there’s a lot to do and I certaintly enjoy, or at least trying, doing it.

Gameplay: 10/10

Story: 10/10

Graphics: 10/10

Music: 10/10

Replay factor: 11/10

Overall rating 10.5/10

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One Response to “Early Review : Dissidia: Final Fantasy”

  1. super extremely cool game, though my spelling nazi side will deduct 1 mark for the “PLIZE” typo in duel coliseum, LOL.

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