Review by LegendaryFrog

Reviewed: 05/05/01 | Updated: 11/09/02

Low key plot, but the the Ability System makes for a great game.

Final Fantasy V is a odd ball of the US series. It never saw our shores until 1999 (I think thats it) where it was packaged with FF6 in the Final Fantasy Anthology. However, it had already be translated long before then, and most hard core fans with Internet played the superior ROM version.

GRAPHICS 7/10

FF4 = bland visuals. FF6 = Right up there with Chrono Trigger and DKC2. And FF5 is a mix between the two. It has a more detailed look that FF4, but lacks the pretty backgrounds of FF6. It’s never ugly to look at, even though character sprites a somewhat small on the screen. Nothing wrong here.

GAMEPLAY and DESIGN 8/10

The Final Fantasy V Ability System is one of the best systems in the entire series. Pick a class from about 20, and then learn abilities from gaining AP points in battle. Change classes whenever and choose, and ability you learned from another class.

Classes, or Jobs, range from the standard Knight or Dragoon, the magic casting Black or White Mage, or the weird Dancer or Bard. Some classes seem bizzare, and there are no need to keep that Job for long. But the abilities these odd ball jobs give, like the power walk on lava, are welcome indeed.

As for battles, it’s a step up from FF4. The plot, which I will discuss later, is well paced, and you rarely get stuck. The ultra hard battles from FF4 has been toned down, also.

SOUND 9/10

FF5 has a great musical score, but Square still isn’t to the level of greatness that is FF6 just quite yet. There are several awesome tracks, but you might need a open mind to really enjoy them like I do. Why, right now, I’m listing to “Pirates Ahoy!,” and I love it. But really, it’s nothing compared to ''Terra’s Theme'' or ''Forever Rachel!''.

''Lenna’s Theme'' is just as good as ''Aries’ Theme,'' and ''The Battle with Gilgamish'' is downright arse kicking. The overworld theme is also good.

STORY 7/10

Sigh. FF5 has a weak, cliche story. Although interesting, you just want more. Sure, the Four Warriors of the Dawn were nice, but nothing major. The four main characters, Butz, Lenna, Faris, and Guldof, are nothing special either. Sure, their unique and not really cliche, but not developed to their fullest.

Say hello the lamest modern FF villain ever, Exdeath. Yep, that’s his name. Exdeath. Sounds fine for a powerful spell, but that the dudes NAME. To bad he’s just some big guy in armor, and not original armor at that. I can sum up his motives in this one line. ‘Wahahahaha! I will destroy the world!!!!!” That’s not far from what he actually says either. Although his fight with the turtle was pretty cool.....

All in all, a disappointing FF plot. It’s really just a expanded version of the original FF plot: find the crystals and defeat the bad guy.

REPLAY VALUE 7/10

The Ability System was great. You can’t play though this game twice and use the same team. Hmmm... I wonder is I can make a Blue Mage that can equip axes....

GRIPES

Everything is fine, except for Exdeath. I can live with the under developed party members if the bad guy is cool enough to beat the crap out of. Oh, and leveling up stinks.

OVERALL 8/10

FF5 was a game to remember. It’s Ability system added a nice flavor to the game. I hope it’s used in future titles, but not like the tedious Materia system of FF7. Worth checking out if you have the time.

Kupo? Yes, and Wark to you to!

Rating:   4.0 - Great

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