Video Game Reviews

Final Fantasy Record Keeper (2015) review

official-final-fantasy-record-ke

Supported OS: OS 7.0 or later, Android 2.3 or later
*Some devices running a later OS than the above may not be supported.

Recommended:  iPhone 5 or later, Android 4.0 or later, 2GB RAM or more
*In some cases, even devices with higher specifications than the above may not be supported.

Final Fantasy Record Keeper is a mobile game available for iOS and Android, and is available for free download in the iTunes store and Google Play.  It allows in app purchases.

I have had an addiction to the Final Fantasy series since the first game was released in 1990 in the US.  Since that time, I have played almost every iteration of the series, with the notable exception of XIV, the most recent MMORPG, and Crisis Core, the PSP exclusive title.  I have recently completed Final Fantasy Type-0 HD.  So when I come into this article, you know where I am coming from.  I am not a partial fan.  I am a die hard fan.  Hell, I even have a Final Fantasy tattoo from my least favorite game in the series, VIII.  So, now that that is out of the way, let’s discuss the game.

You must restore the paintings from different Final Fantasy games to restore the world.  Yes, the story is bare bones, but it’s all about the fighting.  You unlock different worlds from the different games, gather characters including Cloud and Tifa to Wakka and Tidus, and fight through the memorable battles of those games using the ATB (Active Time Battle) system that Final Fantasy is known for.  After you complete one mission, you unlock another mission, which may not be in the same world.

You begin in Final Fantasy VII, then move on to Final Fantasy X, then to Final Fantasy IV, etc.  When you unlock Cloud, for instance, and use him in the Final Fantasy VII battles, you get a bonus to attack, defense, and experience earned.  As you play, it is a good idea to switch out the characters for ones that originally populated that world.  Using Cecil and Rydia in Final Fantasy IV grants these bonuses and makes for a powerful team in the beginning of the game.

206006_prologueAs you fight, you also uncover weapons and armor from the different worlds.  These act the same way as the characters.  Weapons are more powerful in their worlds and armor is more potent.  There is no experience bonus for weapons and armor.

All of the battles are sprite based, like the games until VII.  So for those of us who were into the series before VII, this is old hat and quite nostalgic.  Fighting the bosses from VI, tied for my all time favorite game of the series, was like a dream come true.  Despite playing the game numerous times, it still brings back those feeling of my youth and is incredibly wonderful.

Of course, this brings up the obvious question of what the hell happened to the Final Fantasy series?  Up through IX, he games were amazing.  X was good, as was X-2.  XI was the first MMORPG.  XII is tied for my favorite game in the series.  Then we have XIII.  While not my least favorite, that distinction is reserved for VIII, it didn’t feel like a Final Fantasy game.  XIII-2 was a little closer, but Lightning Returns was way off base, despite being a decent game.  I am waiting for Square Enix to release the original games on the Xbox Store, for Xbox One.  I would certainly buy every last one, again.  It just feels like the series has lost it’s way in it’s attempt to cater to the fans of first person shooters and to take advantage of every ounce of power in the consoles.  The stories have been convoluted and lacking and, dare I say it, weirder than is normal.

These things are why Final Fantasy Record Keeper is a dream come true.  Sure, there is no overworld exploration and the game is all about the fighting.  But that’s not such a bad thing.  I have been enjoying this immensely and plan on playing it for a long time to come.  If you are a fan, do yourself a favor and download this.  You will not be disappointed.

9/10

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