Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


Forgot your password?

Final Fantasy XII Pushes Envelopes 132

The anticipation surrounding Final Fantasy XII has resulted in Square/Enix's largest U.S. rollout for a title. Gamespot reports that 1.5 Million units were shipped to the country to meet demand. From the article: "Even if every last one of those copies has been sold, Square Enix still has a ways to go before the game duplicates the success it experienced overseas earlier this year. Final Fantasy XII has already racked up more than 2.4 million sales in Japan since its release there in March of this year." The game is pushing graphical as well as business envelopes; Kikizo has a feature talking with some of the game developers about the game's use of PS2 architecture. Essentially, the team says, FFXII is the best a game will ever look on the PlayStation 2.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Final Fantasy XII Pushes Envelopes

Comments Filter:
  • Everyone is moving on the PS3 that can really tax the PS2. I would imagine there is more than can be tweaked out of the little black box...but our corporate overlords have said it is time for a we have no choice.
  • by Morlark ( 814687 ) on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @06:54PM (#16777043) Homepage

    I remember much the same thing was said about FF9 on the first Playstation. And indeed, that game was visually stunning. But to be honest, I was a little disappointed in the gameplay. Still a worthwhile game, mind you, but apart from the graphics, it was not the best in the series, IMHO. Now if FFXII can pull off amazing graphics and good gameplay, then not only will I be impressed, I will be overjoyed.

    • by AuMatar ( 183847 )
      Actually, I thought 9 was the best FF of the playstation era (jury is still out on 12). A return to traditional rpg roots alone was enough to propel it past 7 and 8 (worst 2 of the series).
      • by Requiem ( 12551 )
        My favourite was tactics, but I admit that that's a different beast than the regular FF fare. Of the regular ones, IX was by far my favourite for the PSX.
        • by Dev59 ( 953144 )
          Well, if you liked Tactics, you might like XII... it's made almost entirely by the same team.
      • by amuro98 ( 461673 )
        Well, I hated 8, but I liked 7.

        Still, FF7 was no Xenogears. Not the most graphically advanced RPG like FF9 or ChronoCross, but WOW, what a game!
      • slow battle is slooooooow...
      • by rob1980 ( 941751 )
        That was just the problem I had with IX - I got the impression with all the "the crystal has returned" promotional crap they were running at the time that they were hoping they could lure people in with crystals and 4-person parties and that would be it. The music was nondescript, the story was borderline terrible, and the game was overall way too easy. I love Final Fantasy, but IX was the one game I regretted ever spending money on.
    • Now if FFXII can pull off amazing graphics and good gameplay, then not only will I be impressed, I will be overjoyed.

      As someone who's spent many hours into the game so far, as well as read a multitude of reviews and opinions, I can definately tell you that it's the gameplay that's getting the most attention. It's a vast change from the traditional Final Fantasy games, and a lot closer to its MMO sibling. I'm not going to spend too much time talking about the new Gambit system and such (you can read more abo

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Reapman ( 740286 )
      Honestly the gameplay is keeping me going more then the graphics, and i do like the graphics. I really didn't like the battle system in the demo, but being able to get used to it... I'm a believer in Gambits now. Yes the game can "play itself" almost... but you can also tone it way down. I'm actually wishing I had more gambits to customize the characters further (you get more as you can find / buy them). It feels like a lot of freedom... no more omg i better heal that guy asap, because I know my healer
      • by Dev59 ( 953144 )
        No mini-games? What about fishing? I'll accept that the hunts don't really count as a mini-game, but fishing definitely should.
        • by Reapman ( 740286 )
          Fishing??? Didn't know there was any in the game *smacks forehead in disbelief* Hunts were as close as I found to a mini game so far. Far from done tho
    • Re: (Score:1, Offtopic)

      by MBraynard ( 653724 )
      I saw this game on display at EB Games. I had an original Xbox and this thing looked like crap to me. Poor PS2 people if this is the best they ever got. It hurt my eyes it was so ugly. Like a PC graphics from 10 years ago.
  • Also boring (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Com2Kid ( 142006 ) <> on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @06:57PM (#16777077) Homepage Journal
    The battle system is like playing a MMORPG, but you are by yourself.

    Battles are horribly boring. Auto attack, who in the world decided upon that? Hey, you there, attack those guys! I'll just sit back and heal...

    If they had included auto healing as well, the only thing the player would need to do is walk around between way points!
    • Re:Also boring (Score:4, Informative)

      by ogrius ( 186951 ) on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @07:05PM (#16777157)
      Actually once you buy Cure you have auto-healing.

      Ally:HP Cure

      Will automatically heal any hurt party member.

      I personally find the battle system fun. Now unless the sh*t hits the fan, I can just let the system handle it. Honestly for non-boss fights, why do you want to be hitting the same instructions over and over?

      The other thing they have done is add in nasty high level monsters mixed with the easy ones in some areas. Since the fights aren't random, you can see them coming but if you don't pay attention or just assume you can kill it, Game Over.
      • by 7Prime ( 871679 )
        lol, both my friend and I (in our respective games), were dumbasses and attacked the green dinosaur in the Eastersands. I should have gotten a clue when I saw the FMV with it running along with the wolves fleeing in a panic... but I didn't.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by aussie_a ( 778472 )
      Gabe from Penny-Arcade originally agreed with you, but then he saw the light []
    • Re:Also boring (Score:5, Insightful)

      by spectral ( 158121 ) on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @07:10PM (#16777225)
      They did include auto-healing. And a way that allows you to specify when people heal, when people attack, whether or not they do it automatically or not, etc. You don't want them to do something/anything? They don't do it. You want them to cast Cure whenever they can if an Ally is below 50% health? Yeah, they can do that automatically too.

      You CAN treat it like the other games, but guess what most of the other games were? Mashing the A/X/whatever button to accept the default menu option of attack, or down, X, down a bunch of times, X, to cast Firaga/Fire3/Whatever. Big deal. Unless there's strategy involved, I don't feel the need to destroy my thumb and my controller's buttons.. But if you want to, go right ahead -- the game isn't stopping you and removing all control over your characters, it's just removing the mind-numbingly boring generic fight scenes that have plagued the series since its inception. Is a random battle on a huge, open plain where a 40 foot tall monster snuck up on you, and now you have to hold down the X button on your turbo controller to 'Attack' it to death so much better than FFXII's system where you get to see them coming, run in a realistic fashion (and draw aggro), and take a hands-off / high-level approach to control the flow of the battle instead of the individual movements of each character?
    • You mean like dungeon siege? :D
    • by Cerium ( 948827 )
      Battles are horribly boring. Auto attack, who in the world decided upon that? Hey, you there, attack those guys! I'll just sit back and heal...

      I've played a number of jRPGs in my day, and in the FF series the gameplay in XII is easily my favorite.

      I've been spoiled lately by other developers like Game Arts (Grandia series) and Tri-Ace (Star Ocean, Valkyrie Profile, Radiata Stories) and their game's lack of random battles. As a result, I've come to grow very sick of games that still use these archaic sys
    • by trevick ( 670470 )
      Its only boring during the first few hours. Gambits let you focus on the strategy (macromanaging) instead of micromanaging every little thing they do, though you can still micromanage when necessary. In fights where there is no strategy, as is common in the first several hours of play, when monsters don't hit hard and are spread out quite thinly across the map, that means you don't have much to do. But being able to focus on strategy will be very important during any boss encounter, or when you get surro
  • Graphics that great? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Zinnian ( 958511 )
    I was looking forward to the game, being a long time Final Fantasy fan. Unfortunately it looks awful on my TV. I have an HDTV and playing the game I keep thinking that this sure is last generation. It's jaggy, and frankly looks bad enough that my roomie's non gaming eyes can even tell it looks kinda bad. I long to be able to slide it into the Xbox360 sitting next to the PS2 and see the game the way it should be displayed. Maybe when I break down and get the PS3 in the next year or so (resold, as I'm not buy
    • by row1 ( 930208 )
      For a PS2 game it looks great, even through the PS2 component cables on a HDTV. []
      10 Graphics A PS2 technical accomplishment in every sense. Slowdown is a non-factor, model detail is incredible, facial and skeletal animation is stellar, and the artistic design kicks ass.
  • by kinglink ( 195330 ) on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @07:10PM (#16777227)
    I recently got a 360 about 6 monthes ago. FFXII came out last month. The only thing I can say about FFXII's graphics is "this is last gen". It really does push the FFXII to a limit, but there's better graphics. By which I mean less jaggies, better looking, or more fluid. It's true FFXII is impressive in it's graphics, but it still suffers from FMV lag. If you watch the FMV and then jump back into the game the game's graphics look poor. FFX had slightly better ways of dealing with this.

    Overall FFXII is visually impressive but coming out when it did it's showing just how weak the PS2 is to the next gen systems, and totally invalidating Sony's claim that it could have lasted 10 years. It could only have lasted that if people didn't care about graphics and they do. Early Gamecube games looked on par with some of FFXII's graphics and even first gen 360 games easily smoked it.

    That all being said FFXII is an incredible game, and that's coming from a guy who really hasn't liked a Final Fantasy game since FFVI. It breathes new life into the game while retaining the same style setting it always had. If it wasn't for Gears of War, FFXII would be the only thing I'm playing. Both Gears of war and Final Fantasy XII are worthy of all the praise they have gotten as one is the final "great" game. And Gears is one of the first of the new generation.
    • by Dev59 ( 953144 )
      I think the final "great game" for the PS2 will probably be God of War 2 when that comes out next year.
  • by casualsax3 ( 875131 ) on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @07:11PM (#16777237)
    ... I think you're going to love this game. The score sounds like it's Vagrant Story 2, the animation and character models are like an upgraded version, the voice acting is stellar, the script is superb - and the battle system is so much fun once you really get into it. It's no surprise, since it's the same core team. Probably the best part about the game though is the actitechture and overall design - it's so very atmospheric, there's just so much mood to everything. The tone of the game is much more mature than previous FF's. I could go on but I'd rather get back to playing right now actually :)

    Gabe from Penny-Arcade has a review of his first 20 hours with the game that I think is spot on. []

    This game does for Final Fantasy what Resident Evil 4 did for Resident Evil - it reinvents itself and succeeds in surpassing its predecessors in nearly every way.

  • by JL-b8 ( 862188 ) on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @07:15PM (#16777291)
    and I don't see slashdot posting articles about them.
  • Takes the name and completely removes everything then eh? People act like RE4 improved RE. where as the truth is it started it's own series using the RE characters. You can't say RE4 is an improvement on everything since it's not remotely scary in a genre based purely on fear.
  • Now, I'm familiar enough with the series that I'm quite likely to buy this game, however looking at the box art it shows that at least in some arenas an extremely underwhelming effort was made to promote this game. Perhaps it's just the local copies I have seen, but the case art seems to be simply a resized image with no blending or filtering. That is to say, looking at it anywhere up close shows pixellated edges and jags.

    Perhaps it's only the local copies, but something seems horribly wrong. If it weren'
    • by Dev59 ( 953144 )
      Well, I have the CE that came in the metal tin with the much simpler (and, IMHO, better) cover art. That said, I didn't see anything wrong (when it comes to visual clarity) with the standard FF XII box art.
  • Is a random battle on a huge, open plain where a 40 foot tall monster snuck up on you, and now you have to hold down the X button on your turbo controller to 'Attack' it to death so much better than FFXII's system where you get to see them coming, run in a realistic fashion (and draw aggro), and take a hands-off / high-level approach to control the flow of the battle instead of the individual movements of each character?

    For myself, perhaps suffering from nostalgia, there is room enough for both systems.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I hope the envelopes are full of cash, and they're being pushed my way. I have a feeling though that they're full of souls, and they are being pushed to sony.
  • by _xeno_ ( 155264 )

    Is a random battle on a huge, open plain where a 40 foot tall monster snuck up on you, and now you have to hold down the X button on your turbo controller to 'Attack' it to death so much better than FFXII's system where you get to see them coming, run in a realistic fashion (and draw aggro), and take a hands-off / high-level approach to control the flow of the battle instead of the individual movements of each character?

    Of course not. Not including meaningless battles would be better. Automating meaning

  • Right. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    "Essentially, the team says, FFXII is the best a game will ever look on the PlayStation 2."

    That's because Netcraft confirms it, the PS2 is dying.

    FF 12 is one of the last games that's going to be released on the Playstation 2. Were that not the case, games would eventually be developed that kick the shit out of FF 12.

    In the early days of a console, game developers seem to have no clue. By the end of a console's life, developers know every little trick and performance tweak they can do. There's a reason th
  • The thing is you have to hit the x button, and navigate every time anyone completes any action to 'try' the old way. So it's significantly a bigger PITA to do it manually.
  • I'm seriously not trolling, but I havn't enjoyed square-enix games for quite some time. While I loved FF1,3, and 6, I thought 7 was the downfall of the series, and havn't played anything after 8. Not only that, but I finished Kingdom Hearts II and put 25 hours the latest Dragon Warrior, and honestly thought both were junk. To explain myself, I felt KHII was too much of a buttonmasher and the story was too convoluted (this is coming from someone who enjoyed mulholland drive), and the entire time I played DW
    • by Dev59 ( 953144 )
      1. The boss battles involve a HUGE ammount of strategy. Unless you've ground it out to the point that you're a much higher level than you otherwise would be at that point in the game, the bosses are going to be a challenge. I find myself constantly inputting manual commands and adjusting my gambits during boss battles. If you sit back and just watch a boss battle, you're going to die and die a lot.

      2. The story is the best I've seen in a FF game since FF Tactics.

      3. Your character is railroaded, but in a slig
  • My thoughts on XII (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Junta ( 36770 ) on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @07:57PM (#16777719)
    I'm a fan of JRPGs in general, and the FF series has generally been solid, though not always great. (Ignoring FFXI because the concept never appealed to me so I can't judge).

    I've been playing FFXII a while and am underwhelmed, a few points
    -Graphically, beautiful, no complaints really. Well, except no progressive scan support.
    -The cities, admittedly, feel like realistic cities, well, except for the MMORPG-style icons popping up everywhere, which are actually kinda annoying. I am never bothered by the notoriously sparse cities in JRPGs, but I do have to concede they could be judged weird (a huge metropolis with maybe 13-17 people you can see is not atypical in JRPGs).
    -The battle system is really uninspired. Doing it manually is just not made remotely feasible in the game, and distilling your strategy into fairly hard and fast rules makes for very boring fights. Now admittedly, high rates of random encounters in previous games were monotonous as hell, but the difficult fights were more interesting, and you had the opportunity to contemplate at most any given context the risk of damage and whether heal or attack is good. In XII, the decisions are either done in advance (i.e. if health 50%, heal will happen, no thinking), or else not given a good opportunity to recognize your situation if trying the manual approach. I really liked Chrono Trigger, no random encounters, no separate battle screen, yet a traditional JRPG battle system
    -The story. I'm fairly far in, and it remains one of the most boring FF stories ever. Basically there is little depth and it's a fairly cookie cutter high-fantasy story with some Squareisms tossed in (Moogles, Chocobos). It's not the first fairly boring story (FFV was very much along the same lines, and FFVIII was boring to me, but maybe a little more interesting, VI, VII, and X are fairly strong IMO).
    -The characters. The characters are all very very flat and lacking depth, similar to the story
    -The music. The music is also very ho-hum. FF has a tradition of memorable music, even among other games in the series I wasn't crazy about. FFXII consists of fairly generic background music with some hints of remixes of some of their staple music from the past. I have some FF tracks play on occasion in my car, but nothing from XII appeals.

    All in all it feels like they wanted to make a generic western RPG with little story and heavy inspiration from the popular MMORPGs, but done very well graphically.

    This is the first single-player FF series title in a long time I think I'll pass on buying.
  • I bought FFXII Collector's Edition for my fiancee. She doesn't play the games, she just likes the art and videos. I'm probably not going to play it for a while, maybe not until the PS3 comes out.

    Does anyone know if FFXII will look better being played on a PS3 than on a PS2?

    Given the Lik-Sang shutdown by Sony, I have a fair amount of hatred stored up for them, so I'm still wavering on if I'm going to buy a PS3 or not.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @08:30PM (#16778055)
    The only envelope I can see being pushed is how effeminate they can make the male characters and not have them mistaken for females.
    • by Dev59 ( 953144 )
      Blame catering to the Japanese market for this. The main character looked a LOT different in his original character design.
  • by lkeagle ( 519176 )
    I was a big fan of FF 1-3 on the SNES, and then I played FFX. It was the first 3D FF that I was inclined to buy, mainly because of the awe-inspiring cutscenes (for the time), and incredible area detail. I also have studied classical music my entire life, and composition/arranging since college, so I feel I can comment on this matter.

    I feel that the battle system and the music in FFXII are superb. One of the most annoying aspects of random encounters is that they break up the music. The new system lets y
  • Bleh. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Too bad the GAMEPLAY and STORY envelopes were pushed to the limit for Square back with FFVI.

  • Whenever I read a review like yours I'm always tempted to ask what you feel is the best game you've ever played. This way I can get a gauge as to what your tastes are. You're rather harsh with your comments and your opinion of the game obviously doesn't agree with mine, but everyone is entitled to an opinion. Whether that opinion matters is a different question. Some people just like to be critical for the sake of being critical. Others just have a beef with certain franchises. Thus I ask, what do you
  • Maybe the problem is that the battle system needs dramatically redone. Some suggestions:

    1) Instead of making hundreds of repetitive battles against less skilled enemies, why not make fewer battles against more difficult enemies where you are not guaranteed to win every time?
    2) Make the battles more like FF Tactics, where you incorporate positioning. Instead of Fire1/Fire2/Fire3 have a mass range fireball vs a controlled stream of fire with the differences being the area of effect. Incorporate flanking at
  • by amuro98 ( 461673 )
    The KH series has always been action-based, making it a button masher. And I don't know how much sense KH2 would make if you hadn't played the first one (or the horrible sequel on the GBA).

    Dragon Warrior isn't Square's franchise, but Enix's, and hasn't changed much based on what I've seen of the previous games... I played DW7, and got the same feeling you had. Guess that's why they named the series "Drag On, Warrior"... It wouldn't have been as bad if at least the combat system was halfway interesting,
  • by amuro98 ( 461673 )
    The latest word from Sony is that PS2 games will receive no boosts or enhancements on the PS3. They will play and look exactly as they do on the PS2.

    This is rather disappointing as at one time Sony said the PS3 would up-scale PS2 game graphics, giving them a HD-boost. But alas, it seems this was just another pipe dream from Sony.

    Win cash and giftcards just for clicking your mouse! []
  • by jchenx ( 267053 ) on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @09:18PM (#16778659) Journal
    1. I understand the battlesystem has been streamlined, which is ok by me. But do the boss battles actually involve some strategy?
    So far? Yes. Usually, the strategies that you have setup for normal battles, aren't going to work quite well in boss fights. So there's a lot more micro-managing involved. And that's not so much of a bad thing. One thing I really do like is really being able to swap gambits out on the fly.

    So basically, instead of traditional J-RPGs where you're just micro-managing actions, you are managing strategies. Instead of saying, "Oh, character X is hurt, time for me to have character Y heal them", it is now, "Oh, I should have this character do all of the healing, and let my other guys just focus on damage."

    2. Is the story engrossing enough so that you actually care what is going on? (for instance, I got bored with oblivion after a few hours, but the story of neverwinter nights 2 is engrossing for me so far).
    Can't really answer that for you, since story is obviously subjective. That said, it is FAR more story intensive (albeit linear) than a game like Oblivion. I haven't played NWN2 yet myself, so I can't compare against that game. As some other folks have mentioned, the game and plot are a lot like Square's lesser-known titles, Vagrant Story and Final Fantasy Tactics. And I think that's a very good thing, since it's much more mature than your typical "stop the evil bad guy, save the world" fluff.

    3. Is your character completely railroaded? I understand j-rpgs are more linear, but sometimes at least the illusion of choice allows me to become more engaged in the story.
    Surprisingly, yes. I can't say enough good things about the License Board system. It's a weird mechanic and not really realistic ("I have to have a license to wear a hat?" is a common complaint), but it allows you to do customize your party very differently than how others may have.

    For example, my friend and I are playing through the game, and we've set each character up with a completely different arche-type. Some of the bad ass warriors in my party, are spell-slinging mages in his. And neither of us appear to be punished for doing so, as the difficulty appears to have remained the same. That's amazing.
  • by adam31 ( 817930 )

    Overall FFXII is visually impressive but coming out when it did it's showing just how weak the PS2 is to the next gen systems, and totally invalidating Sony's claim that it could have lasted 10 years.

    FF XII is not the best the PS2 will ever look. It's worse graphically than games like Jak2 (came out 3 years ago) which used techniques like super-sampled antialiasing, tri-linear mipmapping, full day-night cycles, no loading times, vehicle physics (albeit annoying at times), and all at mostly 60 frames per

  • i haven't played the game, but penny arcade's gabe sez that the battle system changes once you get through a crazy long tutorial phase. []
  • My feeling is that FFXII is the spiritual successor to Final Fantasy Tactics, which isn't surprising since I believe they were mostly developed and managed by the same teams.

    For those of us who happened to love FFT, I'll go out on a limb and say that we are all loving the changes in FFXII. I like how the story is a lot more mature. I wouldn't say it's "boring", just a lot less flamboyent and in-your-face fantasy than some of the other FF games. The music, is a lot like the other FFT titles, which I am diggi
  • I was a bit disappointed by the graphics (especially if you compare it to recent release of Valkyrie profile 2) , but the game play totally makes up for it.
  • by trdrstv ( 986999 )
    Does anyone know if FFXII will look better being played on a PS3 than on a PS2?

    It won't. There is no added content to be unlocked by a PS3. In fact it may look worse (inconsistant framerate) depending on if they use emulation or not.

  • It's a vast change from the traditional Final Fantasy games

    And that's why I am enjoying it so much. I have always hated the random battles of the FF series: walking along in a completely empty area, and then suddenly a monster materializes out of thin air. This new approach makes far more sense to me. If there is a giant monster out there, it makes sense that I can acutally see the thing first.

  • by 7Prime ( 871679 )

    I'll probably stay away from Vagrant Story then, because as much as I absolutely love FF12, it's musical score is probably the weakest link. I'm a big prog head, and Uematsu's scores actually started me playing video games in the first place... I just miss the classical/rock fusion that Uematsu brought to the genre. Hamouzu did a great job doing similarly fuzed work, but with his own style, during FFX, and I was really hoping he'd take the reigns for FF12. FF12s score, while "pretty" just seems a bit "safe"

  • exactly - the auto/AI npc feature is supposed to remove the annoyance of having to actually pay attention to who's turn it is when you run into, say, a level 5 wolf when you are at level 40 or 60. from what I understand, like you said, you can still micro-manage turns for those boss fights where you aren't exactly at such an insanely high level that you can just smack it a few times with even your weakest character and it's dead in 3 to 5 turns...
  • by 7Prime ( 871679 )
    Well, I got the Limited Edition, which has no artwork on it, so I can't say for myself. But the limited edition strategy guide is WORTH EVERY PENNY simply for its artwork. It even includes a full, 100+ page book with illustrations and renderings of all the airships, espers, primary and secondary characters, landscapes, and archetecture. It is simply breathtaking. I have seen the cover of the regular edition box, which just has Vaan doing an afeminate little pose (which, btw, doesn't fit his in-game persona
  • by Osty ( 16825 )

    Does anyone know if FFXII will look better being played on a PS3 than on a PS2?

    Unlike the PS2 and Xbox 360, the PS3 does not do any enhancements in backwards compatibility mode. How it looks on the PS2 is how it'll look on the PS3. There's no free upscaling to 720p or 1080p or free FSAA like the Xbox 360 does with Xbox games, no texture filtering like the PS2 does for PS1 games, etc. Just the same old PS2 game being played on the same old PS2 hardware embedded inside the PS3 (that's what the slim PST

  • I've got the same question, and actually, an additional one: the PA site mentioned that he went out of the city to grind monsters for a quest. I've put in my time on the MMOs, I've ground levels in previous RPGs, and frankly I'm done with grinding. I'm wondering exactly how much "grinding" there is in the game, whether it be for questing or levelling.
  • by zsazsa ( 141679 ) on Wednesday November 08, 2006 @10:43PM (#16779505) Homepage
    Unfortunately the article really doesn't say how they pushed the PS2 architecture. Before clicking I was looking forward to an article like this amazing presentation by the SOTC dev team [] that really goes in depth to how they implemented the amazing effects on the PS2. Instead, we get this about the development, in its entirety: "The graphics were created using the power of the PlayStation 2 fully," Akihiko Yoshida, character designer for Final Fantasy XII, told us. "We believe that this is probably the limit of how beautiful the graphics can get on the PlayStation 2 console.". Is there anything more in depth than this miniscule blurb?

    Speaking of which, does this game look better than Shadow of the Colossus? Or does it look about as good but actually has a decent frame rate?
  • by rob1980 ( 941751 )
    Dude, you're not kidding. I thought Larsa was a petite woman until it was actually explained that he is really a young boy.
  • by 7Prime ( 871679 )

    Well, honestly, FF12 is impossible to compare to any of the previous final fantasies (the ones you love, and the ones you don't like), or Kingdom Hearts (which I thought, blew as well, btw), or Dragon Quest 8. The "streamlined battle system", that you talk about, makes the full game much MORE strategic than the rest of the series, instead of being a button masher, it becomes more like a small-scope RTS. You become the "manager" of your party, not so much the invisible hand.

    Actually, the closest thing I ca

  • Anyone else find it annoying that TFA talks about how good the game looks and then only has screenshots of the pre-rendered videos or hand drawn art?
  • by rob1980 ( 941751 )
    1 - The boss fights involve a modicum of strategy, but more importantly they're actually tough. Having a boss fight completely exhaust all my characters' MP and all the items in my inventory isn't something I've really enjoyed since Lunar: Eternal Blue.

    2 - Think the politics of Final Fantasy Tactics without the religious tie-in. It's an "us vs. the empire" story that isn't just about you chasing after a madman like in Final Fantasy VI, you're actually working towards kicking the empire out and establish
  • by hords ( 619030 )
    I haven't played too far into the game yet myself, only about 2.5 hours. At first I hated the combat system (MMORPGs are not my cup of tea), but it's growing on me how fast you can get in and out of combat. Also, the non-random battles are nicer.

    Gabe from Penny Arcade answers many of your questions about it on this page. []

    Final Fantasy X was a pretty good game IMO. I'm hoping I enjoy this one at least as much. Though I did like Dragon Quest 8 quite a bit so my opinion probably doesn't count much for you
  • Hmm, I'll pass on 7,8,10,10-2, or 11, but if they redid 9 for PS3, I'd definitely buy it. =)

    It's a shame too, since the PS3 has been in developer's hands for so long, they should be able to release a PS3 version at the same time.
  • Essentially, the team says, FFXII is the best a game will ever look on the PlayStation 2
    Yet you can't find any in-game screenshots in TFA, just some coming from cg's
  • I give this game an 'A' for effort.

    I have been a diehard fan of the series for several years. I started playing Final Fantasy titles on the SNES when I was kid, and I watched the series have its ups and downs. Looking back on them, I have to say that I started playing the series right around its peak (VI being my favorite title, followed strongly by VII). I liked the other games a lot too, but I could tell that the series was floundering. Each new installment had something great about it, but also some

  • Well, the plot is railroaded, but for the rest of that, definitely yes. You can make your characters into more or less whatever you want them to be, and the story is a welcome diversion from the usual JRPG dreck. And the bosses certainly require strategy - not so much the intervening short battles, which are more about planning than tactics.
  • How old are you dude? If you hate Square Enix games, why did you think that the one with all the Disney characters was going to reward you with a compelling story? I don't know much about this stuff, but as far as I can tell those games are designed to hook 10 year olds with easy gameplay and as much Disney-branded goodness as can be crammed into a single disc. If you are old enough to be allowed to watch Mulholland drive then you are WAY outside of the target audience. You're complaining that Oblivion d
  • by karnal ( 22275 )
    Dammit, now you just have me salivating thinking of getting XII.

    Dream Theater owns. And apparently, so does the new Final Fantasy. To be honest, I didn't get into FFX-2 (it's probably been played all of 2 hours so far) so I was holding my breath on XII...
  • and it's bunk. Wild Arms 3 pulled off turn based gaming with a strong strategic element. And let's not forget Valkyrie Profile. Then there's Breath of Fire V, who's action point system and insanely tough battles force you to consider each move pretty carefully. The entire Dragon Quest series does a pretty good job of being gameplay driven and rewarding smart playing, but you can (and most do) grind it to death. Hell, the GBA Golden Sun games require extremely careful use of summons to beat bosses. Calling o
  • by patio11 ( 857072 ) on Thursday November 09, 2006 @01:10AM (#16780637)
    I have more affection for some of my non-plot characters in Disgaea ("Noooo, don't hit Margaret with the fireball, she only has 250 hp and is weak against OH YOU BASTARD YOU WILL PAY FOR THAT") than I do for any of the characters in FFXII. Not a single one of which I can name at the moment, incidentally. Vann or something? Vash? Whatever, whinny effeminate boy who is dating forgettable Japanese girl (who wears both the pants and the shirt in that relationship) and fated to rescue princess in distress, who currently hates his guts but we all know that will change. Throw in bunny-rabbit-who-looks-like-Storm, tank-straight-out-of-WoW-raid, and Air Pirate to round out the cast. They're trying to save the dutchy of whocares from the empire of whatever, which they can only do by gathering... what was it, I forget. Probably crystals. Thats generally a safe bet for a FF game, isn't it? I remember they spent some time in a mine. Was I trying to find a crystal? Or was I just trying to find the next cutscene? I don't know.

    I notice one of TFAs says there is no main character, which is more or less true -- I was equally bored with all of them. The only time one shows a spark of that old Square spirit is when Air Pirate says, ironically, "I'll tell you who I am: I am the main character of this story!" And for a brief period of perhaps 15 seconds I was thinking "Alright, I have passed the boring prologue, now we are going to get to some ADVENTURE". Nope.

    It was about 10 years ago when I played FFVI for the first time, and you can see how low Square has fallen in the plot and memorable character department. Compare Air Pirate Dude with Edgar. The very first time you meet Edgar, he shows more panache than the entire party has in the time I've played FFXII. I remember his lines from a decade ago ("First, I'm captivated by your beauty. Second, I'm dying to know if I'm your type. I suppose your... abilities are a distant third consideration.") FFXII, I swear, its been maybe two months and I would have to wrack my brains to dredge up anything related to the plot or characters. Marle? Marsh? Whoseherface, the princess. I remember her skill readout like it was yesterday (I was aiming for white mage with a sword). Can't remember a thing she ever said.
  • Its going to look like FFXII on the PS2.

    Just because its using a faster system doesnt mean it will look better. Just look at any PS1 game you played on a PS2. In some cases the load time was worse on them. Going to be the same with the PS3 as it is emulating BOTH the 1 and the 2.

  • It tends to go in trends. FFVII and VIII were high-technology (along with Crisis core and Dirge of Cerberus if you want to count them) whereas IX was back to medieval times with X mostly being medieval (yes, I know the past was modern, but you spent almost no time in that part, the rest was VI level technology). X-2 and XI if you want to count them is back to medieval with XII medieval from what I've heard. So we have: medieval (6 games) -> high technology (2-4 games) -> medieval (3-5 games) -> hig
  • Woops, add 1 more to the 2nd medieval, I forgot to include Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings
  • by ViperDC ( 614055 ) *
    I believe sony has stated that PS2 and PSX games will not look any different on the PS3, ie, no graphical upgrades.
  • I'd like to quickly point out that every single screenshot in the linked article was either CGI, or something that looked like an in-game shot, yet was higher resolution than the PS2 is capable of.
  • by sqrt(2) ( 786011 )
    I did the exact same thing last night, and I missed the save crystal right outside that area so it was back to the fortress for me.
  • I'm currently playing FFIX and I'm planning on playing FFVIII after that, and then if I'm still into the FFs I'll be playing FFIV and then FFV before completing FFVI.

    If I do get sick of the FFs I'll move over to BoF IV before hitting Wild Arms and then Suikoen 1 and 2. Then I might get me some Kartia.

    I've got 5 other games on the PSX that I've never completed, and after all these years I do want to complete. And I enjoy every single one of them (school and "teh latest game" often got in the way of finishing
  • I've heard that FFXII is even more linear then FFX with it having quests you have to complete and the map showing you where exactly to go in each quest. Is that the case? Can you shed a bit more light on it?
  • They could release a 50-minute-long DVD of someone taking a dump, label it "Final Fantasy 13" and they'd sell a million copies.
  • by Zediker ( 885207 )
    The gameplay is good, its the story that has suffered though in my opinion. Its the worst story of the series(not better than VIII, but not worse than X-2). It feels rushed and empty compared to the other games. Then there is the ending, which left me with a big 'IS THAT IT?! THATS THE ENDING?! WHAT ABOUT THE REST OF THE GAME?!?!' FF12 is good in the gameplay department, but dont expect a story better than 10,9,8,7,6,5, or 4. If this game were not a FF game, it would still be praised for gameplay, but lamba
  • You are spot on in your analysis...after playing FFXII for 3 or 4 hours, I kept saying to myself "You know, this *so* reminds me of that very weapons-and-armor-oriented PS game I played way back in the day...what the hell is it called?"

    You answered that nagging question for me. It does indeed have a very similar feel. I had no idea it was made by the same design team, but it totally makes sense.
  • 1. I understand the battlesystem has been streamlined, which is ok by me. But do the boss battles actually involve some strategy?

    Oh, do they ever. After I first got gambits (the things that streamline battle) I ran amok in the sewers, killing and maiming far faster than I had been. I leveled about three or four times before I came down from my high and realized I should probably, y'know, advance the plot. So I go where I was supposed to... and enter my first real boss fight with Firemane. "Ha ha!" I thou
  • To all you FFVI fanboys who claim no FF game will ever be that great...take a look at the credits of FFVI and FFXII. What's that? Oh, yes, THE SAME WRITERS.

    FFXII is a brilliant game, and so was FFVI. Get over yourself.
  • For a PS2 game...

    That right there is key, it might be the best a PS2 can do but that's not as good as the prettier games of any console that has come out after it... I also think it's a joke that TFA uses "screen-shots" from the Pre-rendered video cut scenes as an example of how good it looks... aren't we beyond that kind of stuff at this point? If you're going to brag about how good the game looks, I don't know, maybe show some pictures of the actual game.

    I think that graphically even the best the PS2

  • If you really want to see that envelope pushed, have a go at Magna Carta. Its one of my current favorite storylines and overall RPG games on a console (as opposed to NWN on my PC) and is a lot of fun to play most of the time, but the main character has breasts. Ok ok, he's barrel-chested ... they look like breasts on a PS2. Oh, and his butt shows. Yeah, his butt. Luckily, you don't have to look at him most of the game.
  • I have about 20 hours logged in this game so far, and in my opinion it is the best FF (excluding Final Fantasy Tactics) since FF VI.

    I just wanted to comment about the battle system here though.

    I get what they were trying to accomplish with the gambit system, but from the comments here it doesn't seem that every does.

    The gambit system enables you to come up with a strategy for the entire party. It allows you to automate all the repetitive commands you do *every* fight, while still giving you the freedom to c
  • by Endo13 ( 1000782 )
    Well, it sounds like your J-RPG tastes are pretty much identical to mine, so as a result of your post I probably won't be buying the game.

    Personally, I never could figure out why they didn't borrow the battle system from Chrono Trigger for use in the FF series. The random battles in FFVII (and more or less in the rest of the FF series, but FFVII was definitely my favorite) was probably the only thing I didn't like about the game. The battle system I did like.

    But if there's no excellent story, no excellent m
  • ...Vagrant Fantasy Tactics Advanced XII Online.
  • Oh, sorry, I should have clarified that a bit. Vagrant Story had a STELLAR soundtrack - FF12's pales in comparison. []

    Here is the Vagrant Story soundtrack - give it a listen! The Firefly forest sticks out in my head, along with the 5 track opening sequence. The reason I mentioned 12's music as a plus is that it has a lot of overtones and nuances that invoke a great bit of VS nostalgia for me. I'm a huge Uematsu fan too, and I agree with your comments on 12's

  • I find I'm very impressed with the graphics. Not for the big things liek flashy effects and shading/anti aliasing/ect... but it's consistancy. Little touches like seeing the area ahead or the richness and lushness of the enviroments make a bigger difference. I can ignore the jagies but random things in FFX like the terrible design of some of the puzzle rooms. I think it's the effort they put into the little things and not the technical merits that really show in this title.
  • George Lucas was responsible for *both* the Empire Strikes Back and Jar Jar Binks. I rest my case.

"What the scientists have in their briefcases is terrifying." -- Nikita Khrushchev