Final Fantasy X might be my favorite game of all-time. If it isn’t, it’s easily in my top 5 at least.
The main focus of the game is battling with a traditional turn-based system; there are enough unique features in this system that make it unique and actually fun to fight. For example, there’s the bar that shows you the exact order of what character is going to move next. In many turn-based RPGs, you just have to hope “I really really hope my dude attacks before my enemy or else I’m screwed”…in FFX, you can gameplan for that because you pretty much know when each character is going to move (as long as speed-altering moves like haste aren’t used).
Another thing I like about the battle system is how you have 7 characters (though only 3 can fight at a time), and every character is useful in some way. Tidus is well-rounded and fast so he can hit quick enemies; Wakka has range so he can hit flying or far-away enemies; Auron is a typical warrior-type that can deal out a lot of damage and take a lot of damage; Yuna is a white mage who can heal, and she can also summon aeons which probably makes her the most useful person in the game; Lulu is a black mage so she can take out elemental-type enemies that the rest of your party struggles with; Rikku has some special uses since she can steal from enemies and use items the other party members can’t use; and Kimahri…well, he’s blue I guess.
Graphically, the game is awesome for the PS2. The standard graphics in the game are above average, and then there’s “GOOD GRAPHICS” (inside joke) for a lot of the cutscenes, and those graphics are amazing. The music in FFX is just as good, if not better, than the graphics. Some examples:
Off the top of my head, I can’t think of a game that has better music than Final Fantasy X (not including music/rhythm games like Guitar Hero).
Continuing with sound…this game has voice acting by all of the characters who are at least somewhat important (random citizens in towns don’t). Some of the voice acting is very good, but some of it is really bad (Yuna)…and there’s a scene in the middle of the game where Tidus and Yuna are laughing, and it’s probably one of the worst cutscenes in gaming history. I have to watch it on mute.
Speaking of cutscenes, one thing I didn’t really like is how you couldn’t skip cutscenes. I like the story, but sometimes you just want to skip them. For many bosses you don’t save after the cutscene…you save before it. That means on some of the more difficult bosses, if you die you have to load the game back up and watch the whole cutscene again. I don’t think any of these types of cutscenes are more than 10 minutes long, but it would still be nice to skip.
If you get bored of the turn-based JRPG battle system, Final Fantasy X has plenty of sidequests for you to do…some of these include blitzball (basically an extreme version of water polo), monster arena (where you can “capture” enemies in the wild and then create new, extremely strong enemies to fight), and chocobo racing. Doing well in these side quests allow you to receive new items. I personally like Blitzball the most…if they wanted, they could’ve probably tweaked Blitzball a little bit and sold it as a standalone game for $15 or $20. My only complaint with blitzball is that your team seems to level up more than the other teams, so after a while you basically just blow out every team you face.
I know I complained about some things in the game in this review…but that’s not enough for me to take off half a point. Final Fantasy X is a near-perfect JRPG.
Score = 10/10