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Submitted by MiracleBlaze 824d ago | article

Final Fantasy's Fall From Grace - Unlucky Number XIII

Final Fantasy has always been regarded as one of the greatest series ever produced, the masterful skill of Sakaguchi and his team weaving tales of pure brilliance, but with XIII came shock. The ‘linear’ world and ‘sub-par’ battle system causing critics to lash out in anger, dropping a, still very respectable, 83 Metascore upon XIII’s head. For a series consistently receiving scores delving near to perfection, this was an upset of major proportions.

If the problems could be righted with it’s follow up, XIII-2, then maybe the whole horrid episode could be forgotten, but there was worse to come. XIII-2 was damaged more by critics as well as users, and with a possible XIII-3 on the horizon, will Final Fantasy ever return to it’s former excellence? But more importantly, did Final Fantasy ever really fall from grace in the first place? (3DS, Dev, Final Fantasy XIII, Final Fantasy XIII-2, Final Fantasy XV, Next-Gen, PS Vita, PS2, PS3, PSP, Wii U, Xbox 360)

Snookies12  +   824d ago
To be fair, it began to fall from grace when they began producing X-2. The plot was great, and the ideas were there, but the writing was just garbage. Then came XII which was a great game from a gameplay standpoint, but the story was boring as hell for me and the characters were barely memorable. Not to mention the game lacked anything colorful. Moving on to XIII, the characters and world were fantastic, the story was a bit lackluster, and the thing that killed it was the linearity (both in movement and in level progression).
Godmars290  +   824d ago
"The plot was great, and the ideas were there"
Wait-what?
Snookies12  +   824d ago
Yeah, the plot was great. The idea of having her seeing Tidus and all that, her journey to go find him. THAT was a good idea for a game. The way they did it was all wrong though lol.
MaxXAttaxX  +   824d ago
@Snookies12
The best part of X-2 was the battle system.

Linearity was only half the problem for XIII.
You practically knew your final goal from the very start and was launched into action with little build up leaving characters to ramble on about the same thing over and over. And story logs...
Megaman_nerd  +   824d ago
we all knew that Tidus was dead, he was a ghost from the past. I know in DBZ people are being resurrected all the time but in the game there was nothing like that. Making the main plot around looking for Tidus was too much of an stretch, they just wanted an excuse to make a game just like the time-travel gimmick and badly implemented paradoxes were another poor excuse to cash in on a sequel that wasn't needed. Since the first time I started playing FFX-2 I knew that guy was just someone that looked like Tidus because that's such a huge anime cliche....

Ironically both games were directed by Toriyama and he was heavily involved in both projects. It seems that guy loves the cheese but we don't. The FF franchise is more than just a corny story; or at least it used to be more than that. The battle system in FFX-2 was great but the mechanics were really out of place within its own world. The game was a mess.
#1.2 (Edited 824d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(7) | Report | Reply
Nerdmaster  +   824d ago
No, he wasn't a ghost from the past. He was a part of the Fayth's dream, it doesn't mean that he existed once in the past and was dead.
user5467007  +   824d ago
"Moving on to XIII, the characters and world were fantastic,"

Urm....

No they wern't

The characters were horriable, they were either boring, bland, annoying or all three.

Lightning was boring and bland for being the main character
Snow was way too arrogant "Look at me I'm a hero"
Vannile...Well we all know the story <shivers>
Hope was REALLY annoying, "Wahhh Snow killed my mom" <falls to floor crying for 100th time>

I think the only good character was Sazh, even then it's mostly because he was surrounded by god awful characters which made his character stand out more

The world was also lifeless and boring...pretty to look at but still bland, then I'm just prasing FF13s only best feature...the graphics.

"and the thing that killed it was the linearity (both in movement and in level progression)."

There was a lot more that killed FF13 then just the linerarity, it was a major problem in the game, hell it was the main problem but theres loads of other things which made FF13 a horriable FF game. It's like saying the dmc reboot looks crap just because of Dantes hair.
#1.3 (Edited 824d ago ) | Agree(16) | Disagree(8) | Report | Reply
Snookies12  +   824d ago
Lightning was a little boring yes... I'll give you Hope being god awful as well, I completely agree there. Snow and Vanille however were NOT bad characters. You want bad characters, as I stated above go play FFXII and tell me which you prefer.

The world was not lifeless though, it was beautiful, and the only reason it SEEMED lifeless was 'because' you couldn't explore and had to keep going straight the entire game.
user5467007  +   824d ago
But the thing is even if you couldn't explore that much and you were stuck in the sections you were limited to then Square should of been hard at work bringing these small areas to life since they were only small sections they had to work on.

I mean I wanted to see them add features developers wouldn't normally have time to do when making such big locations in games, make those sections places where you could interact with your surroudings, see people get on with their work or talk to people walking around

I'd understand if the game was huge like Just Cause 2 and the world seemed a little lifeless because time was spent on crafting the map but for a FF game which has limited you to such small sections there was no reason for them to make them seem so dull.
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dark-hollow  +   824d ago
"Lightning was boring and bland for being the main character"

like cloud strife?
user5467007  +   824d ago
@dark-hollow

"Lightning was boring and bland for being the main character"

"like cloud strife?"

...

At least Cloud had a personality and character development
Nerdmaster  +   824d ago
@Snookies12

Vanille was NOT a bad character? She was a complete train wreck. People try to make up reasons for her "upbeat" personality, but there is upbeat and there is "OMG this girl has some kind of mental disorder, someone please shut her up".

The only good thing about her is that Square was able to tell a lesbian romance without being appellative. It's sad that one of them was Vanille. Fang deserved someone better.
Godmars290  +   824d ago
"The way they did it was all wrong though"
Hence the "wait-what".

I mean X-2 essentially retconned Tidus from someone who'd been "dreamt-up" by the spirits of the dead of Zanarkand, made real as a side effect of the Sin Spell just like his father, into a distorted copy of the "real" Tidus who apparently had a wholly similar yet different "life" to the one who showed up in FFX. Including an already existent deeply involved love interest.

It also puts an even bigger "WTF" towards Jecht who, in his last moments once free of Sin, should have said "who the fu*k are you?!" as Tidus went to his side.

Maybe, just maybe, while in the Zanarkand/purgatory for a millennium and morose over his fatalistic son it was Jecht who dreamed up the more annoyingly cheerful 2.0 Tidus version, but then what does it say about the man that he was then emotionally abusive to his "dream" son?

edit:
It just really says something that Sqaure might have generated something which suggest such speculative complexity - and they often fail to convey a negative fraction of such in the actual game. More focus was put on Luna's J-pop career.
#1.4 (Edited 824d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
SnipeySnake  +   824d ago
Don't forget no towns and the gameplay the plays itself unless you have super human processing and can play it on manual...even then it's just terrible. The first ever game I've regret buying day 1.
Skywalker123  +   824d ago
This entire piece is doom and gloom, sensationalism

News flash, FF 13 was very successful for square and guess what alot of people loved it

13-2 was damaged by critics and users? Is that why for a non main game it sold unbelievably and got many 7-10 scores?

Whenever I read a review like this it makes me said for how much gamers generalize
VanillaBear  +   824d ago
"and guess what alot of people loved it"

LOL

and a massive amount of people hated it

The ones who love FF13 are the MINORITY

The MAJORITY of people hated FF13

Take a stroll around the interent with your eyes open....it's the truth. Don't live in denial that a lot of people loved it just because you like the game because at the end of the day it was still a rubbish Final Fantasy game
Skywalker123  +   824d ago
Do you enjoy trolling?

You cant accurately measure who the majority and minority are........which is why i said alot.......

Really the only thing concrete is the sales, and it sold over 5 million and was the fastest to that mark, not to mention it was reviewed quite high by reviewers who loved the game.......thats all the concrete evidence we have to go on.......... so your right, it terms of concrete evidence those who loved it where the majority

thanks for proving my point

Now next time you want to be so insecure and negative, do it somewhere else

THE GAME CAME OUT ALMOST 4 YEARS AGO.......trolls harp, real gamers and real rpg fans if they dont like a game, they move on, they dont keep talking about it

You all bitch and moan about a 4 year old game while I play kingdom hearts DDD
#2.1.1 (Edited 824d ago ) | Agree(6) | Disagree(8) | Report
VanillaBear  +   824d ago
Haha...trolling

You call that trolling

No...what you really think of my comment is a one you can't think of a good reply to, so like many other people around the internet that this happens to you go onto calling them a troll to make it look like your the good guy and my opinion dosen't matter.

Have you seen how immature you reply actually is, you have more of a chance to be the troll here then me. I mean look at your reply to the comment below, it's like you are getting so p*ssed off that someone is calling something you like....sorry to say but the game is crap and yes the majoruty of people hate it, I can't accurately messaure who likes and does not like the game but after two years of the game being out, it's easy to see that around the internet and even with people you know at work/college that the game is not popular making the people who do like it the minority
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torchic  +   824d ago
VanillaBear you always troll Final Fantasy articles. if you don't like the game then why do you comment?
SnipeySnake  +   824d ago
Eh...it's more like the majority that hate it are long time FF fans and the majority that liked it are the newer ones, or it was their first ff game.
#2.1.4 (Edited 824d ago ) | Agree(2) | Disagree(1) | Report
Menchi  +   824d ago
@Vanilla

I'd wager a bet, that most people were content with the game, albeit, disappointed, because they compared it to arguable masterpieces. The game is FAR from "crap" it is a great game, just not up to the standards of previous titles.

The big fuss, was a lot of people who weren't really interested in RPG's tagged it this gen, because "It's Final Fantasy" and were wholly disheartened when it wasn't what they expected.

Following critical response, and most of my anecdotal evidence (Mostly RPG fans) they were okay with it, but expected more after such a long wait.

As for XIII-2? A lot of people I've seen, they're a lot happier with it, it is much more geared to old JRPG style gaming, and if given a chance and not looked at through "OH MAH GAWD FFFXIII SUX!!" glasses, is actually pretty damn good.
#2.2 (Edited 824d ago ) | Agree(6) | Disagree(3) | Report | Reply
Outside_ofthe_Box  +   824d ago
No. 13 and 13-2 are plain bad. Yes 13-2 is better than 13, but so what? 13 is linear trash to begin with. To out do 13 requires no effort at all. 13-2 was just better trash than 13. I wouldn't want SE making another game anything similar to either of those games ever again.
#2.2.1 (Edited 824d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(8) | Report
Lilioups  +   824d ago
ppl didnt knew that ff13 was gonna be a horrible game
all ppl saw was insane graphics and badass trailers...
Result very good sales

the game came out...poor story,hoorible characters,linear game,stupid battle system.
more or less poor reviews,nerdrage threads etc etc

result..ff13-2 came out and guess what...poor sales.
ff13 series is the worst of the franchise end of story.
#2.3 (Edited 824d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(4) | Report | Reply
SnipeySnake  +   824d ago
I agree 100%. I still can't believe I fell for the trailers, the gameplay looks great when you're 'watching' it but when you play it, you realize just how crappy it really is. Though I'll admit the fact that it had 'Final Fantasy' in the title made me most attracted to it, I'll never make the same mistake again.
Outside_ofthe_Box  +   824d ago
Watch how well VS13 will be received and sell for a "non main game" compared to 13-2 and you'll see just how much of a joke and a slap in the face 13-2 truly is. If VS13 is good, I expect it to out sell FF13, a "main game."
SnipeySnake  +   824d ago
The fact that VSXIII is being developed by the advent children and KH team brings my hopes up for it. I'm sure it'll be amazing mainly cause 'Action RPGs' is what the KH team is good at. Though only time will tell...
--Onilink--  +   824d ago
the problem with Final Fantasy has been the same that has plagued many japanese developers... they try to "westernize" their games, and in the end they dont appeal to the fans of the JRPG, and fail to understand what makes a western RPG diferent. So we end up with a games that dont know who they are appealing to.
Skywalker123  +   824d ago
Thats just one big false generalization and you know it.............

I mean hell, the game was frickin years ago now and there have been plenty of awesome ff games besides that, so even if you didnt like it, youd have something to play

The fact that this site is bitching about such an old game, means they got bored

The game is almost 4 years old..........square has made over 50 quality rpgs on all different kinds of platforms this gen.....the real square fans have moved on to there other games already, years ago
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--Onilink--  +   824d ago
i honestly have no idea what you are talking about... plenty of awesome FF games besides that? from what i remember, the only FF after XIII was XIII-2, that suffered from many of the issues that plagued the original

A game 3 years old, with a sequel less than a year old.... yeah thats WAY in the past...

anyway, im not making a big false generalization, because its something that has happened to many japanese developers
izumo_lee  +   824d ago
I think cause of the pedigree of the Final Fantasy games every new game in the franchise is put up to high expectations. If those expectations are not met than it is considered a failure in the series. That is what happened with FF 13 reception. Fans were expecting WAY too much for this game cause it was the first game for the new generation of consoles.

Being multiplat had nothing to do with the poor rep this game gets but i do believe Squarenix poorly handled the development of the game. The potential for Final Fantasy 13 is there, it is too bad that Squarenix cared more for a paycheck than making a quality game.

Sure it is the highest selling game in the franchise but that is mostly due to the hype that the game got & the high expectations of it.

Can the series return to its former glory that they saw in the ps1 & ps2 days? Certainly but it all depends on if Squarenix is willing to change their ways & remember what made them successful in the past.
PshycoNinja  +   824d ago
I was just expecting a decent game. Period. It wasn't even that.
SegaKnuckles86  +   824d ago
Final Fantasy went down the toilet a decade ago. The last remotely decent game was FFX but even that was not anything spectacular. Everything after that is worthless garbage ranging from FFX-2 to their latest MMO. I am not expecting much from vXIII and will likely be the final nail in the coffin.

Even Square-Enix openly admitted they took a wrecking ball to their loyal fans that have appreciated and supported their games, just so they can cater to the lowest common denominator of gamers: horny virgin losers masturbating to computer generated depictions of non-existent female characters.

Fail company. Obvious sellout. Pissed off their fans all for extra money.
Godmars290  +   824d ago
For me the franchise needs to move back to identifiable classes. Since FFX they've moved towards a generic, everyone can use and do everything.
Nodoze  +   824d ago
It is not just Final Fantasy. All of Square Enix has $hit the bed. The CEO is an ass hat and decided that he could play with the long time fanbase in exchange for cash. We all see how well that worked out.

I will never purchase another Square Enix title while Wada is the CEO.

Fuck him.
kewlkat007  +   824d ago
Square Enix...has been is DEAD.....since merger and after FFX.(Last great games in the series)

Bring back Square-soft and Hironobu Sakaguchi..

-No new franchises
-No Soul or inspiration or exploration in the games
-Too much Westernization of characters/Games
-No revivability of past great (Squaresoft)franchises...

I used to wait for the next big JRPG hit(from any company), now there is really nothing to get excited about. I'm convinced there will be little gmes here and there but Square-Enix is dead.
#8 (Edited 824d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(3) | Report | Reply
CLOUD1983  +   824d ago
Sad but true things r exactly how u describe them FF & Square die after FFX & after Sagakuchi left nothing can be done it's better if u dont expect anything from them anymore that way u wont be disappointed again & again like the past 10+ years..

We need new blood in the industry ASAP! else the genre is going to die at least we have Level-5 and Studio Ghibli, they prepare a magnificent old school turn-based JRPG set in a vibrant fairy-like world full of colors I cant w8 to play it ^__^ oh did I say that it have world map and exploration on land, sea and even air? o.o come on release it already! :D
Tex117  +   824d ago
I ...I...I just dont care anymore.
Skateboard  +   824d ago
FF XII is a masterpiece and XIII was such a downgrade, but I understand it was their first FF for next gen systems. Play XII and then play XIII, XII world makes XIII look like a studio apartment.
CLOUD1983  +   824d ago
FFXII was a shity offline MMORPG with boting system merged together in it's gameplay, when I play it I was under the impression that I look my char bot on Lineage 2 and I just watch him exp like a moron like I didn't have anything better to do.. also the char and the story was crap the protagonist was like a 3rd rate actor in his own movie.. I still cry about the 54 euros I spent to buy it day1 that was the last time I trust SE, I assure u it wont happen again.
Skateboard  +   824d ago
; (
MaxXAttaxX  +   824d ago
Last thing we need around here is another Cloud fangirl complaining about FF12.
I kid.

But seriously. It may not be the best FF, but it was at least an RPG compared to 13.
The main characters were Basch, Princess Ashelia and Balthier. You can tell by playing the game.
After Playing 12, I expected a beautifully rendered world I could explore in 13, just like in 12 but with better graphics and gameplay.
Unfortunately... well, we know how that went.
HeavenlySnipes  +   824d ago
FFXII was really good
I don't get the hate. Top notch voice acting and 100+ hours of content to play. If the only reason you hate it was because of Vaan its obvious you're hating for the just to hate. He isn't even thrust as the main character, the game just begins with him. Heck, he doesn't even NEED TO BE IN THE PARTY. Amazing game, tied for best FF IMO with FFX with FFIX coming in second
NeXXXuS  +   824d ago
Final Fantasy XIII was garbage. The end.
Lilioups  +   824d ago
im glad ff13-2 failed so hard
since ff13 and 2 are the worst ff game of th efranchise

this game deserve nothing more but trash
Hiten   824d ago | Spam
Omnislash  +   824d ago
I blame this 100% on the Xbox 360.
This game could have been amazing!
Hicken  +   824d ago
It's funny to see all the "this game was crap" comments from people who, quite honestly, didn't judge the game the way it should have been judged.

Yes, it's a Final Fantasy(I'm speaking of any game in the series), and yes, there are some requisites that come with having that title. Chocobos, summons, magic; that stuff should always be there.

But each and every FF- even the direct sequels- is its own game. Remember how Tidus said, "This is my story," in FFX? Remember how, in X-2, Yuna said, "This is MY story?" Ever think about what Yuna was going through in HER story? Ever notice how her changes in personality and such were a pretty good mirror of the entire WORLD of Spira?

Anyone who wasn't too busy wishing for the second coming of FFVII would have seen how good XIII was. Solid story in a well-developed world, great characters- ESPECIALLY but not ONLY Sazh if, as I said, you're paying attention- and no broken or flawed gameplay mechanics. The battle system that was so criticized was actually very good; contrary to popular belief, you could not just spam Auto Battle and win every encounter.

XIII-2, while within the confines of the world outlined by XIII, sought to rectify the issues people had with its predecessor. To me, it actually falls flat a little in the story department, but it's no less solid a game than XIII.

XII was amazing. The thing I liked least was that anyone could wear anything; in all the other games, an individual's weapon was a huge part of their personality, and though everyone had a starting weapon in XII, being able to change it meant they lacked that bit of individuality. Otherwise, the world and story of XII is massive and massively detailed; while the majority of the characters seem to take a back seat to the story, somehow, still characters like Ashe and Balthier make impressions.

Overall, I've not played an FF I enjoyed; even those I like the least are still games I LIKE. But then, I guess I have a different way of judging them- and all games- that seems to give me a sense of enjoyment- and, to a certain degree, value- out of them that most people can't seem to find.
Hiten   824d ago | Spam
iamtehpwn  +   824d ago
While XIII wasn't that great of a game for me, it wasn't that bad either, and I had to say, I think some of things in there were pretty decent. It wasn't as horrid of a game as people say it was, but it didn't satisfy my thirst for a new FF. Although people make it out to be the worst game of all time.

To me, the biggest problem with XIII had more to do with the pure lack of content and variety. All there was to do was to fight battles, and doing missions were composed of fighting battles as well.

XIII-2 was a step in the right direction---I enjoyed it significantly more than XIII, and I enjoyed the narrative a lot more than I enjoyed XIII's actually, mostly because Caius and Noel were such strong characters. But I think XIII-2 at least understood the points about how important freedom, exploration, variety, and secrets are to an FF.
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Haduken  +   824d ago
I agree with you

5 million people bought 13

I havent seen 5 million complainers

maybe only 50k

so thats a minority
SnipeySnake  +   824d ago
Speaking of 'Grace', I know another JRPG series that's been sticking to its roots....
DEATHxTHExKIDx  +   824d ago
IN all honesty XIII brought me back into final fantasy because I hated XII,and XI was an MMO. XIII's combat was diffrent But I really liked it felt more strageic to me. XIII was very linear no doubt only thing after the game are missions but I enojyed it.XIII-2 I loved it improved every possible way except story the ending was very dissapointing. I can understand the hate for XIII but I dont think it deserves all of it.
Haduken  +   824d ago
People just need to chill out and accept people like all different kinds of games, FF 13 included, and move on........
CanadianTurtle  +   824d ago
Westernization is only a small problem of FinalFantasy 13. The characters and story were terrible and poorly presented. Dialogue was a joke too.

It has a lot to work on than just gameplay.
EverydayGuy  +   823d ago
The story was bad and the characters were shallow. I like the gameplay. The game only had 3 things going for it, graphics, soundtrack, and gameplay.
MasterofMagnetism  +   823d ago
Final Fantasy gets blasted for changing too much while Call of Duty gets blasted for not changing at all. What has to be done to make people happy?
Valorous_Entity  +   823d ago
Enough change to make it different but still sticking to the roots of the franchise.
Yangus  +   822d ago
I huge FF fan,but XIII ist medicore gameplay....visuals awesome.....

FFXIII-2 better game.....and i hope Versus awesome FF!!

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