Review by HM Master

Reviewed: 01/20/04

The game that made Final Fantasy what it is today!

Final Fantasy V was originally an unreleased game in North America. That was until Square decided to make Final Fantasy Anthology, a combination of FFV and FFVI. Not only did they add a few nice touches throughout the game, they added CG scenes. These really are cool, even if there is very few of them. This game really started the Job systems of later Final Fantasy games and made FF into what it is today. As I said before, this game never came out is the US. Fans wanted it enough so Square made it happen. My review is below but remember the Final Score is NOT an average.

Gameplay (10/10) - The Gameplay is probably some of the best I have ever seen in a game, new or old. There are four characters you command in battles, which happen randomly. While random battles do get annoying, FFV makes them enjoyable because of ability points. The Job System for FFV goes like this. Each of the four characters can become a different job class, such as Knight, Black Mage, or Dragoon. When switched to this class, they can only equip certain weapons that suit the class. Now, each class has abilities that you can learn by getting ability points by defeating enemies. How many points you get per battle depends on the strength and amount of enemies. When you get enough points, you permanently learn an ability that relates to the class (Thief learns dash and steal, Blue Mage can learn enemy abilities). There are many abilities for each class that the characters can learn. Once you have an ability mastered, you can change your class and still keep the ability from the other class! So you can have Knights with black magic and so on. It is a very deep system that will make you want to level up to get more abilities and max out your characters. The game is pretty tough, just like most of the old Final Fantasy games. Control is perfect, and can be customized in many different ways.

Story (10/10) – The princess Reina has gone looking for her father, the king, who left for the wind shrine. He left because the wind just suddenly stopped, making it hard for ships on the ocean. She gets hurt and is saved by you, a traveler looking to explore the world. You soon join up with an old man named Galuf and a pirate named Faris. Your little party has been blessed by the broken wind crystal, and now you need to guard the other three crystals. There are a lot of very good story sequences, and some really funny ones. This is a very good story that is amazing all the way to the end of the game.

Graphics/Sound (10/10) – Okay, they do look old. That doesn’t mean they don’t look cool. I personally really like the old graphics as much as the new graphics. Back when this game came out, these were the best graphics of their time. Now with the added CG scenes, these are definitely perfect. The character job designs are very cool, and same with the monsters. The sound is some of the best in any Final Fantasy game, and that is saying something. There are many different melodies throughout the games, some epic and some like the battle song, but they are all perfectly done. I bow down to Uematsu. Some people may not like the old looking graphics, but they really are cool. They show gamers what it used to be like.

Play Time/Replayability (10/10) – Well, this game is huge. The quest alone is about 40 hours just to complete, but there is a lot of sidequests to do. Not as many as some of the later games, but there is still a lot! Leveling up is not boring anymore with the job system and you can easily reach 80 hours just mastering everything. This is a huge quest, so will you want to replay it? That is up to you, but the first time around is long enough to not warrant a second play through. If you have Anthology, then there is still FFVI to play. This is what some games lack today. A long quest like this game isn’t seen as often today, and long quests are mainly in the Final Fantasy series. You will not want it to end, that’s for sure.

Square did such an amazing job with this game, that I cannot say anything bad about it. Everyone really needs to play this. It will be hard finding a Japanese copy and a Super Famicon, so Final Fantasy Anthology is really the way to go. It used to be rare, but now it is out as greatest hits for 20 bucks or under. Everyone has to get Anthology, especially as it comes with a whole other game, FFVI. I cannot recommend this enough, so buy it now! For those of you who look at the graphics and dislike them, please look past that at the actual game, because there is so much you will miss. This is one of my favorite series of all time, and this is one of the best games in it.

Gameplay- 10/10
Story- 10/10
Graphics/Sound- 10/10
Play Time/Replayability- 10/10

Final Score- 10/10!!!

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

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