Friday, 29 August 2014

Final Fantasy VII review

FFVII was such an addictive game for me because it's world,story and characters drew me in so much.FFVII is the game that got me into RPGs.
The story is about an ex-soldier named Cloud Strife who joins a group of rebels named AVALANCHE as a mercenary and AVALANCHE are trying to stop a company named Shinra(Shinra are a military company who control much of the world and oppress the people in their world and are draining a type of energy from their planet and this type of energy is referred to as 'mako' and mako gives life to their planet and since Shinra are extracting mako it's causing their planet to die).Shinra profit greatly because Shinra have made it so people have become dependent on Shinra energy for their daily lives and Shinra have caused much of their planet to become polluted because of the mako reactors constantly running and because they dump toxic waste into surrounding environments.
For the first few hours of the game,your focus is on stopping Shinra(your group of characters will go around blowing up Shinra reactors),until Sephiroth enters the story...
SPOILER BELOW
Sephiroth is believed to have been the one who slaughtered much of the high-ranking people in the Shinra company and Sephiroth is responsible for slaughtering entire towns and burning them to the ground and he has plans to make himself become almost invincible by making an comet hit their world and when their planet heals itself,he will steal it's lifestream energy.
END OF SPOILER
The game has a love triangle and psychological and emotional moments,for example a certaub character has to choose between paying Cloud to assist AVALANCHE or saving the money for his daughter to go to school and I still remember the intensity in that moment when that character had to choose between his daughter's future or the future of the world.
There's moments in the story that are very shocking and emotional but I don't want to spoil them for you.
But I will say not all the characters in your party will survive,one of the party members is a spy and ancient races and legendary,nature-filled worlds come into the story,so do aliens and the history of Cloud,Sephiroth,and the other characters are slowly revealed in a well-paced way and they have such complex pasts filled with surprising revelations and some of them have troubled pasts.
Right from the opening scene I was hooked because when I saw Cloud leaping from the training and fighting past the Shinra soldiers I just knew this game was going to be an epic story/adventure.
I like how you start the game in a dark,polluted city named Midgar,but you'll travel through the countryside and to a beautiful tropical resort and through country towns and even to a theme park(and you can play the games in the theme park)and you can even get lost in the desert and seaside towns that are becoming polluted from Shinra and a haunted house and there's other surprises I'll let you experience for yourself.
Besides Cloud and Sephiroth,the other characters include:-
Your party characters:-
Barret,a muscular,stockily-built black man who has a machine-gun replacing his right hand that he lost.He's the leader of AVALANCHE.He will have to confront some demons from his past and he's always tense and angry but it's because he's worried about the fate of is world and about his daughter.
Tifa Lockheart,who is a beautiful,busty brunette woman who has been close friends with Cloud for a long time and has spent intimate moments with Cloud and has feelings for him.
Aeris,a beautiful,mysterious brunette girl who sells flowers and likes to work at a garden.She has a lot of secrets to reveal and they're very important for the story.
RED XIII,is a talking animal from a species that looks like a mixture of lion and wolf.His species have their own tribal culture and he has a lot more to his past then you'd originally think.He was used a research specimen by Shinra until he was freed by the group.
Cat Sith,a little,fortune- telling cat,who rides on top of a mechanical,walking thing.
Cid,who wanted to be the first man in space.He is the guy in their group who knows how to use high tech/scientific things.
There's also optional characters that can join your party too.
As for the villains:-
Sephiroth is one of the most famous video game villains for a reason,he is intelligent,and evil and cold.There is a lot more to him but I will let you discover it for yourself.
There is many Shinra employees who are villains and they're the typical selfish people who only care about money and who use their soldiers and technology against you.
The alien named JENOVA is a villain too and has surprising things about it.
As for the gameplay,the battles are turn-based and use an active time battle system so enemies will keep attacking you whether you've taken you're turn or not but you can program your next turn quickly to make the battles go faster and you can wait and allow an enemy to have a turn before you so you can see which character might need to be healed.
You'll travel across a world map to very diverse environments and lots of towns.
You have lots of leveling up to do,but for the first 1/3 of the game it's very possible to defeat enemies without level
grinding and using good tactics because I've done so,but eventually you'll need to level grind but I like how level-grinding a lot doesn't ensure you victory and you'll need to make us of limit breaks which are extremely powerful attacks that each party member has and the normal limit breaks can easily remove 1/3 to 1/2 of a boss's health and you can find hidden limit breaks that will do even more damage.Using limit breaks effectively(which means keeping your characters long enough to charge up their limit break is crucical and adds a degree of unpredictability and tension to the battles).
The spells of your characters(materia)level up.You can make any character become a powerful black mage/white mage and any character can summon a creature to do a lot of damage but summoning can only be used a limited number of times doing battle.
There is some interesting sidequests and mini games you can do.You can do a sidequest which involves breeding a particular type of Chocobo(which is time consuming),so you can use it to reach a place that would otherwise be inaccessible,so you can gain an extremely powerful summon.You can buy your own place in the tropical resort(which means saving lots of gil),you can play games at the arcade in the Gold Saucer theme park(include mini arcade games).You can do chocobo racing,using a submarine to hunt an enemy before time expires,creating an army of robots to defeat another army of robots,disguising yourself as a woman,weight lifting,looking at beautiful views of the galaxy through a telescope,learning how to march properly,eating at a diner and telling he chef his food was good,ok or tastes like dogfood and you can influence who Cloud goes on a date with,and it's a nice scene when he is on the ride with that person at the themepark.Some minigames or activities are required to make
the story progress,I don't want to spoil things for you but you'll need to win at least one Chocobo race,however having to do so made the story feel more exciting.
There's other little things about the game that I liked,such as when you're at a store on a farm,and the children explained their prices are very expensive because their parents died and they are going through tough times.
And how you must give CPR to a child who has nearly drowned(using a mini game style technique).
The characters may look blocky and have weird bodily proportions but it gives them charm such as Cloud having his way over-the-top spiky hair and Barret looking a bit stocky compared to his movie counterpart.Tifa being very busty despite her slim build and the object that Cat Sith rides looking clumsy but cute.
I like the detail and atmosphere in Midgar such as seeing how people live in the city slums and as if they live in poverty and how Midgar is designed with different levels built on top of each other and it looks futuristic.The reactors in Midgar make it look polluted and the dark sky and old style cars driving around remind me of a 1940's film noir type movie.
The tropical resort has beautiful water,palm trees,nice sand and you can even see people swimming in the water and you can even kick a ball around that kids are kicking on the beach.The ancient ruins have vegetation growing through them showing nobody has lived there for a long time and you have the little,traditional style country towns.
The cinematics are exciting and took story-telling in RPGs to a whole new level
SPOILERS BELOW
I love the scene when the characters are trying to get away from the Shinra reactor before it explodes you'll see a cinematic explosion and news reports of it on the TV.
I like the scene when Cloud is surrounded by the Shinra soldiers,and he jumps onto the moving train.
END OF SPOILERS
I like the cutscene with the AVALANCHE members riding the train and on their way to their next mission and talking to eachother,it just felt like it was building up to something epic,and it did.
The battle theme music is enjoyable too.
FFVII is one of the most addictive games I have played and is one of the best games I have played and this game got me into RPGs.
I give this game a score of 10 out of 10 because it's extremely addictive and captivating and you'll want to keep seeing what happens in it's story next everything in the game feels just right and the game is timeless.

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