Square Enix Crisis Core: FF7 (US Version)

Facts
Reviews Views Date of last review
4 31608 24/11/2011
 
Recommended By Average Price Average Rating
75% of reviewers None indicated 10.0


First off I will just say I loved the game, but there are a few areas I'm going to note on in my review that could
have used a bit of work. So don't think this is any sort of hate-bashing review, because it isn't.

First I will cover the scales. 1 is the worst, 10 is the best

Story: 10 - Accurate and informative. Takes you back and reveals the FF7 history
Battle System: 6 - I will explain this in detail below as to why it is a 6
Game Mechanics: 8 - Decent convenience factors added such as stores and missions from the main menu
Replay Value: 5 to 8 - situational based, will explain below
Graphics & Visuals: 10 - Top notch for a hand held
Game flow: 8 - This is how often you actually get to play the game without being interrupted by cut scenes or movies
Mini-games: 7 - Some are enjoyable, others are very tedious after a while
Over-all: 8.5 - Extremely enjoyable, has a few faults, but none detract too much from the overall enjoyment.

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Further Explanations of above noted sections, note these are going to be the faults I found, that doesn't mean this game is bad, it just means it has these faults as any game has a few:

Battle system-

You may be asking why I rated this so low, well... while the non turn-based elements that they incorporated into this game are good in theory, in practice they are a bit cumbersome in places. The first place they missed a bit here, was the DMW system. Now you might be thinking, "Yes, I have read about how people don't like the system". The problem is, it is not that I don't like the system, I just think that they could have polished a few elements with it. I will name these polish points as "smudges".

First smudge - 'phase modulations', you will on countless occasions run into a situation where you are JUST about to finish off the last monster and end a battle when you get forced into one of these phase modulations. Sure it's cool the first few times to finish off the monster with a cool attack, but after this happens 20+ times it will start to irritate you because you just want to kill that last monster and move on. A lot of the times when this happens you will get either a useless result out of it, No result, or a longer attack that finishes off the monster but was a waste of time since you were just about to deal the killing blow with your sword. The useless result factor comes into play when you get a buff to an element that was already maxed/buffed before the phase modulation. They also on occasion added flashing images while the DMW is spinning the middle image. These images cannot be bypassed after seeing them a first time, which wastes even more of your time. This also leads into my next area to cover.


These seem to pop up at very inconvenient times.

Smudge two, Phase Modulation Attacks - Aside from not being able to skip the aforementioned images the attacks that come from the DMW also cannot be skipped. The summon attacks you get can be skipped, however only certain ones. Why SE (Square-enix) chose to punish the player like this by making them watch the same attacks over and over without the option to bypass them after the first few times is beyond me. It just adds even more wasted time to what could have otherwise been a good idea, if only they added an option to skip these after the first time it would have been MUCH better. Do you as a player honestly -WANT- to sit through the same 5-10sec long attack sequence over 50 times throughout the game? I didn't either. You can also land a 'late' phase modulation attack which will occur after you've killed all the monsters. That means you will have to watch the sequence anyway, even after the battle should have ended.


Can't be skipped, why can't it be skipped?

That is it for the things that could have been fixed with the DMW, the next aspect that didn't seem to work quite as well as it could have, would be the pace of the battles being too fast to actually execute needed commands. You will be left running and dodging just so you can use a healing item, or curative spell. It isn't hard to scroll over to items or a spell, but with the speed of the battles and the constant attacks coming from the monsters it makes it very difficult to pull off. Far more difficult that it needs to be. This adds to the 'cumbersome' factor that I mentioned above.

Replay Value elements mentioned above:

This game has replay value, that I won't deny, however depending on how you played the first time through it could either have great replay value, or almost none at all. If you went through the game the first time just to see the story and play the game casually then the second play-through with the New Game+ will be enjoyable. However, if you spent time getting levels, powerful items, and doing all the missions then your second play through will be so easy that most replay value will be taken out. The only remaining value at that point would be to watch the story a second time. While this is enjoyable the rest of the game will have almost all of the challenge removed. I don't recommend a New Game+ if you went through and made your character a powerhouse. If you fit this category then you will get more replay value if you simply start the game over from scratch.


A very young Cloud, if my time-line for FF7 is correct he is supposed to be 16 in CC.

Finally, I am going to cover missions. Since this is one of the major side-quests/mini-games in CC. This is also why that section only received a 7. Mission, these were a GREAT idea, HOWEVER, poorly implemented. Why do I feel these were poorly implemented? I feel SE wasted far too much time working on the quantity of missions, but didn't spend as much time working on their quality. As you play through them you will notice there are only about 10-15 maps total that get recycled over and over again in different ways. There are some places where dialogue is also recycled. However there are very few missions where you actually get dialogue, and only one mission where you get dialogue scenes in every sub-mission. The lack of dialogue adds to the fact that they didn't have any real storyline added to the missions. It was pretty much just: Accept mission, collect items in a recycled map, find and fight mission objective boss/monsters, rinse and repeat. After the first 150 or so missions of doing exactly what I just mentioned it will get painfully tedious. All tedium could have been removed had they just cut the missions in half, to say 150, and used the rest of the time adding quality to them. In other words, adding storyline or making a larger selection of maps. Personally I don't care if they recycled the maps, but I wish they added some sort of storyline to missions so that they weren't just the same exact thing repeated over and over again x300. In fact, after the 153rd or so mission I started to get more enjoyment out of reading the Shinra briefs you get when selecting the mission than doing the missions themselves.

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Phew! Now with all of that out of the way (Sorry I am long winded) I'll get to the actual review since I covered a lot of things above this might be shorter than the above areas.

CC, being the prequel to the very famous FF7 delivers what I consider to be a KO punch as a game. The storyline does not disappoint you, if you were playing this game in hopes to learn what happened before FF7 then you will not be disappointed. The flow of the story I felt was very smooth and well organized. From the development of bonds such as you will see Cloud and Zack form, to Sephiroth's descent into insanity. All of this in recognizable locations from FF7 that have been redone in stunningly beautiful graphics. The game starts out right away grabbing you firmly with a great action movie sequence done in what can only be described as PS3 quality graphics. I was shocked at just how detailed and realistic this was for a hand-held system. The real-time graphics (what you see when you are running around fighting, etc) are not as high quality as the movie sequences, but they are still amazing. The movies give the graphics a 10, while the real-time graphics get an 8. They are still visually amazing for a hand-held system.



CC has also added something new to familiar elements such as materia. They have added what they call a materia fusion system. While I found this system to be a bit more confusing that it needs to be you can easily find information about it online and it adds a bit of an interesting twist and gives you something to work toward in strengthening a certain materia with specific stats. If you just wish to experiment it will provide plenty of that. However if you plan to seriously work on it then I'd highly suggest reading up on it because it is very difficult to figure some things out on your own.

Phoenix downs in this game have also received a slight change in functionality. Since you are the only one that will be fighting monsters and bosses instead of using it on a fallen comrade you either use it on yourself during battle, or out of battle. What this then does is give you a buff called "raise" that does not go away until you die. When you die this buff instantly revives you with full HP. Very helpful for certain bosses, what this basically means is, if you have enough phoenix downs you can survive indefinitely as long as you always keep one active on yourself.

The battle system, as mentioned above, goes off of the new DMW system. Which is something like a slot machine. Most of which consists of random results and overall not one of the most enjoyable aspects of the game. Adds a bit too much of a clunky and at times very interrupting element to the game. It is also incorporated into how you level up. Now, while I was not overly thrilled with how you level up in this game, I've learned that it is far from random. The level up system goes based off of what would seem like random DMW spins, but there is still hidden EXP that comes into play. When you get a certain amount of EXP over what you need for your level the DMW will have a 100% chance to hit the level up spin. This was confirmed when I was cursed and fought for about an hour, then after the curse wore off leveled up 5 times in a row. A level up is gained when you get a "jackpot" or 777 on the modulating phase screen as shown below.



I didn't much care for the "Activating Combat Mode" and "Conflict Resolved" messages before and after every battle. Had they given you the option to enable or disable these then it would have been alright. The problem here is that after these messages happen for the 500th time they will start to either get stuck in your head, give you a headache, or just become -really- irritating.

CC brings back an old element that you might have seen in other games you may have played. The ability to break the traditional 9999 values that we've been accustomed to, with the use of special accessories and materia fusion. With the right items you can get your HP to 99,999, and your MP and AP to 9999. Furthermore you have the ability to do upwards of 99,999 damage with a single attack. It all depends on what you have equipped and what abilities you use.

In CC you get two combat bars other than your HP. The other two would be your MP, and your AP. MP should be self-explanatory, it is used to cast magic spells. Your AP is used for special attack materia, one such example is an attack materia that has you spin in a circle and attack all enemies around you in a 360 degree strike. There are many many other different types of attack materia that do all sorts of things, but you'll have to find out for yourself.

The musical score in this game has been mixed up a bit. There is old and recognizable themes, some that have been revamped, and others that have not been. This is mixed with a all new musical score that personally I found to be enjoyable. I am one for nostalgia, so I personally would have liked to see more of the old FF7 music in this game, but that's just me.

Another nice aspect is how much they pack into the main menu to make things easier. You can shop from the main menu, accept missions (if you are at a save point), and do materia fusion. Adds a bit more of an easy access to the game, though this also means at the same time it takes out a bit of the exploration you do in games where you would run around different places to do said things. Though that isn't missed to terribly with how well the game flows from location to location.



So what this all boils down to is a very solid game, it has a few places where it could have been improved upon, some places where painful tedium could have been removed, and a few irritating elements that could have either been redone, or completely removed. However no game is going to be perfect in every aspect, this one makes up for the few issues with a compelling and immersive storyline, an overall nostalgic feel, high quality and breath-taking graphics, and a cast of enjoyable characters, new and old. You can actually connect with the characters in this one on an emotional level, which you don't get very often anymore. You know, the kind of connection that you made back in FF7 with Aerith, and as you know what happened with her. This holds true in this game, even for those of you who already know how this one ends. For those of you who don't, I won't spoil it. I highly recommend this to anyone, as it is one of the best games for the PSP. I highly recommend this to anyone, as it is one of the best games for the PSP.


Amazing graphics for a hand-held, just wow.

Image copyright: All images used for review have their rights reserved by their respective creators and have been used only for example and display purposes. No claim of ownership has been placed on any images.
Keywords: crisis core FF7
Sound & Graphics Excellent
Entertainment Value Very Good
Approx. Retail Price 34.99
Genre (e.g. Action, Adventure) Role Playing
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Trunks
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  1. 7/9/2008 6:38am
    1. Legend
      Legendary Otaku

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      Would you recommend the product? Yes     Price you paid? None indicated     Rating: 0
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      your review is not appreciated as i believe tsurara already did it when it first came out :P

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  1. 7/9/2008 8:09am
    1. Trunks
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      Pros: Nothing wrong with two different reviews
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      Nothing wrong with having two points of view on the same game. So don't even make me bitch slap you. Besides, hers was on the Japanese release. Mine is on the English release.

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  1. 24/2/2009 2:44pm
    1. Forlorn Shadow
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      Would you recommend the product? Yes     Price you paid? None indicated     Rating: 10
      Pros: eye drawing
      Cons: fanasty turn in to reality
      Final Fanasty crisis core is kick ass...lol
         
  1. 24/11/2011 2:44pm
    1. Noirmei
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      Agree Forlorn Shadow it is kick ass ~!
         


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