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As you know from last week post, today I’ll be talking/reviewing Final Fantasy VI. I didn’t play this game the moment it came out, I think I was not even born yet (Arthifis from the future here: I checked and I was 1-year-old!) lol and when I did play it, I already had played at least Final Fantasy 7,8 and 9. However, contrary to the past Final Fantasy games that I reviewed this one was able to amaze me, even after so many years coming out! I do think it was a game ahead of its time and I don’t understand why Square Enix, at that time SquareSoft, did not continue using some ideas from this game in the future installments. Well, let’s start shall we? 😀
Contrary to the previous installments, Final Fantasy VI really has an interesting and unique story, even for today standards.
First the game will give you some background of the world around you. 1000 years ago there was a huge war, called the War of the Magi where at the end of it magic ceased to exist. At the present iron, gunpowder and steam engines have been rediscovered and high technology reigns. However, the Empire is trying to get their hands in magic again to enslave the world through espers that are in the world.
The story then starts with the main character, Tera going to a village in a mission from the Empire side. It’s believed that this village harbours some rebels that are against the Empire and she has the objective to kill them, however she doesn’t know what is happening since she is being mind-controled. In the middle of the mission she wakes up and she ends up running away with a treasure hunter and rebel sympathizer, other main character, Locke. Although having regained conscious, Tera is suffering from amnesia and doesn’t remember who she is and where she is from. Tera has a special skill that everyone thought to be extinct, she can use magic.
The two travel to Figaro Castle, the seat of rule of a desert nation allied with the Empire. Terra meets Figaro’s king, Edgar, who attempts to hide her from the Imperial ambassador, Kefka, who arrives looking for her.
Kefka sets the castle aflame and Terra, Edgar and Locke flee into the desert. They decide to go to the leader of the Returners, Banon to find protection for Terra. At the middle of their travel they find Edgar’s twin brother Sabin which also joins the team. With a full team you arrive at the Returners hideout. Now, (I think) it is here that all of them decide to strike back against the Empire.
The story from here have 2 objectives. Fight back the empire and Tera remembering her memories. Of course they will be linked somehow, it’s a game story xD If the characters weren’t important for the story they wouldn’t be there in the beginning! 🙂
I can tell you that the story can surprise a lot. Even though there are some things that you are expecting, it’s difficult to understand how they will be connected. Other thing I loved was the ability to play parallel stories, with you choosing the one you want to play. Although it does not change the story and you have to play all of them, it was something that could have explored more in the following installments.
For example, after meeting in the hideout, the party is divided in 3. Each 3 parts will be doing something different and important. Instead of just playing with the main character and then in the future explaining how it goes, you will play each part of the story. The only time I’ve seen that in the next installments is in Final Fantasy 8 (And Final Fantasy 13 I think). It is a smart way to make you more interested in the story and at the same time get more into the characters.
This is where Final Fantasy VI shines the most! No questions!
Other thing is that this game explores more adult subjects than most of the Final Fantasy installments such as suicide, mass murder, terrorist attacks, family deaths, things like that! It really resembles some matters that we are living today and they exposed them in great way.
Final Fantasy VI is a little bit like Pokemon to tell you the truth. You have 14 playable characters (if I’m not wrong) with some of them misseable and by being misseable you guessed it, they are not really that important to the main story. So getting them is… Hmm not really important lol HOWEVER, you will get an end story for every member you get, so if you want to see the full ending you will need to get them all!
The characters (the ones that you will obligatory get) are well constructed. Each one of them have different personalities making them easy to recognize and talk about even not knowing their name (like, you know when you are talking about someone and can’t remember their name so you will speak about their main characteristics, yeah the game characters are complex enough to do that). Moreover each one of them have their kind of problems and you are able to explore each one of them! 🙂
Other thing I want to speak of is the antagonist Kefka. This guy is just pure evil! I don’t even remember why he is like that, but he is the one that poisons the river that provides water to a city that the Empire is doing a siege, killing everyone inside the city… It’s really low, but well it works so for Kefka is ok. He has the state of mind that it doesn’t matter which means you use if you achieve the end.
In Final Fantasy 6 you come back to having specific classes for specific characters. The fighting system is similar to the previous one with Active Time Battle.
The new things are party member changing – something that we are now accustomed since they used it in all of their next installments and the ability to equip espers. Equiping espers (such as Shiva, Ifrith and Ramuh, the most popular) give the characters the possibility to learn magic.
Other thing that is worth mention is the mini-games (we can call it like that) you will have to do throughout the story. Final Fantasy 9 is the only one that I remember that also had some. However, in Final Fantasy VI there are more of them and they completely make sense! It’s a good way to make the experience fresh. I think the most popular is the one that you are playing as Locke and perform an Opera. You basically just need to remember all your lines, easy but fun and different.
It’s still 2D and you probably are able to do games with better graphics using the latest version of RPG Maker. However, I did enjoyed it and I’m really picky about graphics! Although old, it’s easy on the eyes. If you play the PS1 version you will have the opportunity to watch some cutscenes which were good for the time it came out 🙂 I do hope they do a remaster!!!!! (Arthifis from the future here: THEY DID!)
It’s a little more… Hmm dark? Don’t know if it really makes sense 😀 But yeah, since the game is also a little more serious and dark than the other installments the music also gives that vibe (This time I remembered to hear the Final Fantasy VI ost while writing). More than that… Well, it’s a Final Fantasy, so you know that the music will be awesome. My favourite one has to be the opera “Maria and Draco”:
And I think that’s it! 😀 Final Fantasy VI was truly a game ahead of its time! It was really fun playing it, even though it was already considered “old”, the graphics show just that. I really recommend to anyone that is a fan of the genre!
I give Final Fantasy VI 4 espers out of 5!
What do you think about Final Fantasy VI? Comment down below! If you never played it, are you thinking of doing it? Comment also down below 😀
Next week I’ll be reviewing Final Fantasy VIII, I already reviewed Final Fantasy VII, my all time favourite. You can read that review here!