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Nintendo’s Final Fantasy Crystal Bearers

Nintendo's Final Fantasy Crystal Bearers Review

Crystal Bearers is an exceptional action/ role-playing game that grabs the player’s attention from the first moment on. It ranks somewhere between Kingdom Hearts and Final Fantasy XII in its maturity and is similar to Kingdom Heart and The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess in gameplay, with one exception — players can expect to employ a lot more Wii remote motion.

Like Crystal Chronicles for Nintendo’s GameCube, Crystal Bearers takes place in a visually stunning world of Clavats, Yukes, and Lilties. Its story takes place 1000 years after the events of Crystal Chronicles.

Layle, a young mercenary living in an age of science, is the game’s protagonist. Magic is a rarity in this world, and Layle, a crystal bearer with extraordinary magical powers, is feared and hated for his misunderstood abilities.

Layle is hired to protect a new airship. During its journey, the airship is attacked by monsters led by the game’s apparent villain, a magic-wielding member of the Yuke tribe long thought dead. Layle’s confrontation with this Yuke begins his journey and sets the game’s story in motion.

Square Enix’s Crystal Bearers Features Unique Gameplay Unlike Other Final Fantasy Titles

To the displeasure of die-hard, Final Fantasy traditionalists, Crystal Bearers is not the Wii’s first true RPG. However, unlike Nintendo consoles’ other post-Super Nintendo Final Fantasy offerings, Crystal Bearers is a single-player game. This means no annoying chalices to carry or other awkward gameplay moments that hinder the overall enjoyment of the game.

The feel of Crystal Bearers is strangely reminiscent of Skies of Arcadia. As is expected from a Final Fantasy game, it is loaded with side quests and extensive traveling. Some of it can get tedious, but the story is generally very good, save for some horrendous voice acting.

Its gameplay, like all Final Fantasy games, takes some getting used to but is not hard to master. It uses controls similar to many Wii games (e.g., Lego Star Wars: The Complete Saga). Players make Layle run around with their thumbs on the Wii nunchuck toggle. The trigger (B Button), A, C, and Z buttons are all used for various actions, be it opening menus, opening treasure chests, or attackig and using Layle’s magical abilities. Throw in some Wii motion to lift and/or throw objects, some point and shooting, and some Resident Evil 4-type well-timed button combinations, and Crystal Bearers offers an array of unique actions unlike those of traditional Final Fantasy RPGs.

Overall Verdict: Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Crystal Bearers is Top-Notch Video Game Action

Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Crystal Bearers is a sensational game set against a beautiful landscape. It features Final Fantasy staples — gil, creatures, weapons, and music — that are sure to recall fond memories of earlier Squaresoft video games. It is rated “T” for teen but is sure to please most gamers. Although Crystal Bearers is appropriate for children, its gameplay may be too difficult for children less than eight years-old.

Final Fantasy – Dissidia

The basic plot is simple. For whatever reason, all the Final Fantasy worlds are interconnected and this entire plot is lead by the ruler of the light, Cosmos and the ruler of the dark, Chaos. After the characters start interacting, which could be incredibly interesting, you may start nodding off. The subpar voice acting is fueled by shoddy dialogue and painfully dull cut scenes.

A Great Mix of RPG Grind and Fighting Prowess

That being said, the rest of the game is fantastic. Square Enix takes their years of RPG experience and seamlessly mixes it with the fighting genre. The familiar grind of an RPG is here, but through actually fighting the battles with a personal touch. Every character has a unique style. The character’s powers evolve in a visual way as experience and levels are gained. The higher level fights turn into epic battles compared to the simple brawls at earlier levels. It’s a treat to play as the most iconic characters in the franchise. The strength of a player grows with the character just as every Final Fantasy game, just with a more hands on familiarity.

The fighting in the game is a little different than other brawlers. A character must sap their opponent’s Brave (using the circle button) to execute a devastating attack (with the square button). Health is handled by hit points and attacks can be strategically done for a one hit kill. These moves can be customized to fit personal preferences and as the character progresses. Along with the moves, there are plenty of different ways to customize characters from costume to equipment. The EX Meter is a way to really put a beating down. It’s the equivalent to every character’s “limit break” and most are executed in a different way. For instance, Squall’s ultimate attack is pulled off the same way as it was in Final Fantasy VIII, by hitting a timed trigger in a sequence. Little bits of nostalgia like this peppered throughout the game will make every fan happy.

There are plenty of modes from the beginning and a few unlocked along the way. Story mode must be played through to get to the second act of the game, where the end of the tale lies. Play as each character, get their crystal, rinse and repeat. This mode is played through a chessboard, where you are assigned DP (Destiny Points) and strategically pick the fights you want to play. The end of each character’s mode ends with a fight with their nemesis. Each character’s story could take up to an hour to finish, depending on how you play.

Other modes available include Arcade Mode, a duel type mode where all the settings can be modified, and others unlocked from playing the story. All these modes allow for unlockables and experience, making every fight worthwhile.

A Complex, but Incredible PSP Multiplayer Experience

Even the multiplayer allows for growth. But it is somewhat complicated. There are two options if you want to brawl with someone other than the computer. First, there is the old fashioned two players with two PSP’s and two games sit next to each other and duke it out. The second is much more fun, but requires a Playstation 3. Recently, the downloadable Ad-Hoc Party for PSP on the Playstation Store became available for American players. For owners of multiplayer PSP games, this creates a truly online experience for the handheld. If neither of those are a viable option, the single player will still keep you occupied.