The Dancing Mad Clown!

AltWeissMission Debriefing: Final Fantasy VI Advance

Final Fantasy VI was originally released in the US as Final Fantasy III, this has since been fixed with PS1 and GBA ports of the game, and here I’m reviewing the Game Boy Advance version of the game. As a note: I didn’t grow up with FFIII (SNES), I came to know many of these characters in recent years and by their original names, for those that don’t know, here’s a quick reference on the Japanese names I use instead of the American names:

Tina = Terra, Lock = Locke, Cayenne = Cyan, Mash = Sabin

Gameplay: The ATB system returns here, and why not, its arguably one of the best FF battle systems as it always makes battles fast-paced and intense. The new system here is the Espers, which you can equip to characters upon attaining them, and by battling with those Espers equipped, they learn spells over time, gain access to that Esper’s summon, and some even boost specific stats when you level up. There is also the Relics system, where you can equip each character with 2 Relics to enhance their stats, give them status immunity or grant them special abilities. It doesn’t play too great of a role early on, but late game Relic set-up is important.

Story: Awesome, seriously this is one of the better stories in the franchise, it’s developed well, does things differently and has some great plot-twists in the middle. I think the cast is one of the strongest in the franchise, and my personal favorites were Celes, Tina and Lock, and just about every party character, save the 2 hidden characters and Mog, gets a very good amount of backstory. My only complaint with the story was the lack of an epilogue, as the game just ends after you defeat the final boss and escape on the airship, it makes an unfortunately somewhat disappointing end to a great game.

Graphics: Pretty good looking overall, it’s a big jump forward from the previous two SNES FF games. Characters sprites are more detailed and given far more expressions. Environments are a lot more detailed and hidden paths are more cleverly hidden, though most towns tends to look alive, save places like Narshe and Vector.

Sound: While the music isn’t the best in the franchise, it definitely has a few tracks that stand out, like Celes’ Theme, Tina’s Theme, Dancing Mad and Battle to the Death. However, you can’t forget Kefka’s trademark laugh.

Replayability: Probably not as strong as other entries in the franchise, as there is no New Game+. Beating the game and saving the data essentially puts you back to just before you entered the final dungeon, with all the experience and items you gained from beating it, so you can essentially keep beating it to get Elixers and some of the best weapons. There are 2 Extra Dungeons, the Dragon’s Den (Unlocked by defeating all 8 Dragons) and the Soul Shrine (Unlocked after completing the Dragon’s Den) that will likely keep completionists busy for some time.

Overall: Final Fantasy VI is a great game that’ll satisfy your RPG needs, and I loved every minute of it. It does unfortunately fall short at the end, with a way too easy final boss battle that could’ve easily been fixed by giving him more HP (I beat him with my under-leveled 40-43 range party) and the lack of an epilogue leaves you wanting more. Overall, I’d rank this 4th as a main series FF game, closely behind Final Fantasy X.


~ by Sushikins on July 5, 2009.

2 Responses to “The Dancing Mad Clown!”

  1. I really need to start this game and I’m looking forward to not running into the type of bugs I saw in FFIV Advance.

    • No FFIVA-esque bugs, forunately none of the other GBA FFs have them.

      Pretty cool review-ish thing, tis nice not to see massive praise and glofication it gets from most critics.

      I’m not a fan of the dreary setting that dominates the WoR, and Kefka reputation is kind of annoying though.

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