Though I’ll write a review for it eventually, I wanted to take time out to give my opinion on Final Fantasy X-2. With the review, I’ll go more in-depth, but for this editorial I’ll just go over a few points.
X-2 is often plagued as not just a bad game in general, but mainly as a bad Final Fantasy, which “cursed” or “ruined” the series, as some say. While the game definitely isn’t the greatest game in the world, and definitely not the best Final Fantasy, it’s not as terrible as most gamers say. First off, I definitely agree that it’s not a “hardcore” experience that you may get out of the early few Final Fantasy‘s. I agree that the story and characters can be a little…girly at times. I agree that the music isn’t as amazing, I agree the sidequests aren’t always as gripping and engaging as they should be and I agree that some of you disagree with what I have to say.
I’ll go out on record and just say, I love this game. I can almost hear the disgusted groans while writing this. It’s not perfect or amazing, but it’s great and just damn fun. Most of my love from this game probably stems from the fact that the game before it, Final Fantasy X, is not only my favorite Final Fantasy, but my favorite game above anything else.
Right off the bat, it contains many of the things you would expect a sequel to have: it features returning areas and characters (with the same voice actors), but also has new characters and locations as well. One major complaint, however, is that it is too much like the original. The whole game is basically a repeat — it has the same graphics pulled directly from it and just pasted into a new game disc. I would have loved to see remodeled areas and new enemies, but it is a great feeling to revisit the world of Spira.
Though 90% of the graphics are simply recycled from the first game, it does feature a few new areas that branch off of existing locations. Though most enemies are the same with just different names, there are new “fiends” that are still interesting. For the most part, the bosses are new, though some are recycled, of course. However, even though most of the content is the same, the game still manages to keep things fun and interesting. One complaint is the amount of sidequests the game features. To a point, I can agree, because this means that most of the main story can be completed in only a few hours. The most time you’ll spend on the game is working on sidequests. This is not to say that the main story is bad, though. In fact, completing so many sidequests also expands the characters and in some cases fills little details behind the main story as well; one of the most important aspects of an RPG is the story. Some may not agree that the story is good, but it is interesting and expansive, and you can only get the full story if you play more than just the main quest.
Besides containing enough nostalgia in character, graphic and story-wise, X-2 also features one of the best battle systems in the entire series. I will say this: this game is ridiculously easy. I would definitely agree that I’m not the best player, but this game was incredibly easy even for me. Most players will hate this fact, but it also keeps the game moving forward easily. With the battle system, you get more of an action-based system than the one featured in X and previous games. The ATB (active-time battle) gauge is back, but actions are a lot quicker and your character attacks right when you choose your command, versus other titles when you still may have to wait for them to attack. This also means that your characters and the enemies can attack at the same time. One of my favorite moments in the game is when an enemy is just about to hit you, then one of my characters hits them with a sword, stopping their attack and sometimes killing them before they can even get an attack in! The battle system is fast, exciting and most importantly, fun. It keeps the game moving at a fast-pace, much faster than you will find with a more traditional RPG.
The game also features New Game + which is a great addition, and I wish it were present in more games. This means that once you beat it, you can restart the game with all of your items, abilities, equipment and money. Your levels start over, but this gives you a new chance to maybe take a few more risks by trying out different abilities to enhance the battle system, or have and obtain more money to buy different items and accessories so you can make it through some of the more challenging spots. This makes the game much more flexible. There is a hundred-level dungeon that progressively gets harder, and the New Game + will help players with accomplishing their goal. Without getting into too much detail about the music (most of it is good, though some tracks are just awkward) the game features a beautiful ballad-type song called “1000 Words” and is personally one of my favorite songs from any game. There are also a few piano songs that are beautiful as well.
In the review, I will go more in-depth about the game and also focus on the negative points. The game definitely isn’t short of any of those, but here are my reasons why it’s not as bad as everyone says it is. These days, you can find it cheap, so give it a try!