I needed some time to think about this game after I completed it in September. Final Fantasy XV was one hell of a ride and here’s my thoughts on it.
This is one depressing game! From the moment the game started to when the ending credits rolled up I was left in shock at the journey I had with the best group of characters I’ve had the pleasure of knowing in a long time. Noctis, Gladio, Ignis, and Prompto are all amazing characters with deep backgrounds, personalities, and the I loved how each of them developed during the story. This game just kept hitting me over the head with sad moment after sad moment. There are a few happy ones, but that just made the ending sting that much more. That’s all I’ll say about the story because I’m tempted to spoil it.
Final Fantasy XV is one of the best looking games on PC. The attention to detail is incredible and it’s one of the best looking games of all time in my opinion. This game on PC makes the console version look like a joke in comparsion. Nvidia has some nice exclusive features that makes everything from hair to the grass around the ground look out of this world. You’ll need a really beefy PC to run the game at all max settings, but it’s totally worth for a game that looks this good. I ran this game on high/ultra settings with my 980 and it looked absolutely stunning at all times. There’s not a ugly or muddy area in this game. Everything from the grassy plains to the caves underground look amazing! Noctis and the rest of guys are animated beautifully and probably have the best looking hair video game history. To get that hair would require sacrificing some FPS if your current setup isn’t up to par.
It’s bad enough that this game has a depressing story. The sad songs playing the background doesn’t make it any better. Seriously this game’s soundtrack is fantastic. It has some happier beats like the Chocobo music that plays when you’re riding one of those giant, fluffy chickens. The songs that play in the car are complete shit though. Yes, I know they’re from previous Final Fantasy games, but that’s not good car music to me. I kept my radio off my entire playthrough because I didn’t like the car music. The voice acting is superb all round and added weight to some of the heavier story moments in the game. I really loved the back and forth between Noctis and the group.
I considered bumping this down a section because I don’t think the gameplay is great, but when I thought about it I really did love exploring the world, fishing, etc. The combat isn’t anything to write home about. It’s good don’t get me wrong, but it’s not very deep. Warp strikes are my best friend in this game and they do a ton of damage with the right equipment. Driving around can get boring because you’re not really doing anything (at first), but watching your car move from one location to the other. Once you’re able to upgrade it you’ll unlock free drive which lets you drive anywhere you want and you’ll eventually unlock flight mode too, but honestly that mode kind of sucks. The way that I played is by doing whatever the hell I wanted. Whenever I came across a fishing spot I stopped and caught all of the fish in the lake and moved on. I went shopping, talked to my bros, fought monster, rode on KFC, and just had a good time getting lost in this game. When I combined everything together I had no choice but to place this in the great section because I really enjoyed it and I wouldn’t mind revisiting this game again when that Noctis DLC drops next year.
I was afraid that this game would have boring side stuff to do. I’m happy to report that I was wrong. This game doesn’t have the deep side quest that games like The Witcher 3 do, but it does have a lot of fun side stuff like fishing. Yes, I said fishing. I didn’t think I would like fishing, cooking, or going out of my way to do the various different side quest, but I do. The more time I spent in this world the more I fell in love with it. There’s random boss encounters, base infiltration missions, and I can ride around on KFC (my Chocobo) and just take the sights in. I also really love how photo mode works in this game. It’s completely random. Prompto will ask you what you want him to take more shots of and he’ll do it. I got some really nice screenshots because of him.
This game has some insane boss fights! I went up against a fire breathing dog, a fire god, and a level 99 mountain sized turtle. When shit isn’t going my way and I need to do some serious damage I’ll just summon this dude –
The summons in this game are crazy. Summoning is completely random. There’s a chance you’ll be able to summon when one of your party members is knocked out. Once you see a prompt to press L2/LT you’ll summon this sexy, lightning smiting old man.
Final Fantasy XV has some decent mods available for download, but I don’t think they’ll ever be as great as some Elder Scrolls or Fallout mods out there. Why? Because Square Enix is releasing their modding tools in bits and pieces. Right now you can’t do anything besides make new weapons and characters and the characters that you can make are really rough around the edges. The weapons are great and the Cloud mod is my current favorite, but he’s not animated correctly because the tools to do that aren’t available and they might not ever be. Here’s to hoping the modding scene grows in this game. That’ll add a lot of replayability to this game for me.
I love the design of the Regalia. It’s one of the sexiest cars I’ve ever seen and the fact that it can turn into a freaking truck is awesome. That being said driving it leaves much to be desired. For a good portion of the game I have no choice, but to follow the road and I can’t stray from the path. Flying the damn thing is annoying and has little point since I can’t fly anywhere I want. Why let us fly if I can’t go anywhere?
The Linearity Of The Later Half Of The Game:
The first half of this game is AMAZING! The second half… not so much. The story never let up, but why in the world would they make it so linear? I would have loved to explore another region with new quests and locations to visit, but instead we got a half assed city to explore. It’s a beautiful half assed city though… I still really enjoyed the later half of the game, but the lack of freedom bothered me a lot.
Final Fantasy XV is incredible and when you think of the long and troubled development history that makes this even more impressive. I love Noctis and all his friends and they're among my favorite in all gaming. When I finished this game I was legitimately sad because I had gotten attached to everyone and didn't want it to end. This game is special and I'm glad I gave it a chance. It renewed my faith in the Final Fantasy series and I can't wait to see what's next for this legendary series. Final Fantasy XV is my favorite Final Fantasy game. I had to think about that for a whole month before I made it official, but it's true. No other Final Fantasy game has made me feel the way this one did and if you haven't played this one yet you should.