The long-awaited Final Fantasy XV, which has been in development for 10 years, opens with a splash screen that claims the game is a "Final Fantasy for Fans and First-Timers."
With Final Fantasy XV bearing the name of one of the most successful franchises in the video game industry, players have set high expectations for the title. The question is: was Final Fantasy XV worth the wait? Or does the game fail to live up to the hype?
Final Fantasy XV: A Return To Glory For The Franchise
According to Matt Peckham of Time, Final Fantasy XV is the best Final Fantasy game in years, and it "feels like a glorious return to relevance" for the iconic franchise and the Square Enix after middling entries such as Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII in 2014 and the horrible Final Fantasy XIV launch in 2010.
Kotaku's Jason Schreier claims that Final Fantasy XV steers the franchise into a new and promising direction, with a new world and an impressive real-time combat system. Schreier adds that for those wondering if Final Fantasy XV still feels like a Final Fantasy game, the one constant among the games in the franchise is that there are no constants. While there are certain elements that have been carried over from previous games such as chocobos, summons and other references, the many new things about Final Fantasy XV makes it fit right in to the franchise.
"[Final Fantasy XV] reminds me a lot of Final Fantasy VII," wrote Andrew Webster of The Verge, a comparison that shows how great of a game Final Fantasy XV is turning out as Final Fantasy VII is the game that marked the franchise's climb into worldwide renown.
Final Fantasy XV Is A Great Game, But Far From Perfect
While Final Fantasy XV has been receiving mostly rave reviews, it is far from being a perfect game. According to Rishi Alwani of Gadgets 360, the overarching plot of the game is "a clunky mess," with the vague story requiring players to watch the full-length CGI movie Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV and the six-part anime Brotherhood Final Fantasy XV to fully understand everything that is going on.
IGN's Vince Ingenito, while praising the fact that combat looks like the Avengers beating up monsters due to the competence of all members of the party, the actual battle mechanics are quite thin. The teleportation abilities of Noctis, the main character of Final Fantasy XV, makes combat a bit more interesting, but the limited mechanics translate to a passive experience at certain times.
Final Fantasy XV Is Worth The Wait
Despite its flaws, it is safe to say that Final Fantasy XV is indeed worth the 10-year wait. While the story of the game can be completed in about 30 hours, as estimated by GameSpot's Peter Brown, the real fun only begins after the credits finish. The end-game content of Final Fantasy XV will get players hooked for dozens of hours more, captivating players through intense challenges and the beautiful world rendered by Final Fantasy XV.
How has your Final Fantasy XV experience been so far? Let us know in the comments.