Archive for the ‘ PS2 ’ Category

Final Fantasy XII: International Zodiac Job System

I can’t remember exactly when I started hating this game.  I guess one of the pitfalls of having a nearly six year development cycle is that it gives people plenty of time to start hating your game for no good reason.  All I can say is: 

Sorry, Square-Enix.  I was wrong.

Final Fantasy XII is a materpiece.  Great characters and a great story, all set in an amazingly believeable world.  Definitely the most fun I’ve had with a Final Fantasy game since #7. 

Over the years, I’ve slowly lost interest in the FF series.  I used to think that maybe I’d become jaded, or simply grown out of the series’ target demographic.  Nope.  Turns out I still love the shit, it’s just been a while since Square has made something that really knocked my socks off. 

My only regret is that it’s taken me almost three years to come around to this gem.  It sort of makes me wonder if the current bad taste FF XIII has given me will eventually be washed away as well.

I’m playing the Internation version, which means cutscenes are in English, but everything else–menus and text dialogue–are still in Japanese.  It’s really not as bad as it sounds.  If you can read katakana, you’re good to go.

The International version also includes a bunch of extra license boards and other shit I’m not equipped to comment on because I never really played the original version.  Also included is a bonus DVD that includes a huge amount of concept art, interviews, and a detailed runthrough of every major FF game ever released.

And it comes in a pretty box (see above).

The only stumbling block so far is the game’s Gambit system, whose menus are litered with kanji and nonsensical Japanese characters.  It was hard enough to figure out when I toyed with the American version a couple years ago, and now it’s basically impossible because of the language barrier.  Instead, I find myself pausing battles and issuing individual orders to characters.  It’s a bit slower this way, but doesn’t hinder my enjoyment.

In summary:  Good shit.  Pick it up if, like me, you were stupid enough to pass it up the first time around.

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