Final Fantasy is, for a lot of players, a series that wants no introduction. The video games span more console generations than you'll be able to depend on one hand, and it is simply probably the most prolific and extremely regarded series in all of gaming.
With the following sport within the series, Final Fantasy 16, nicely into improvement, there's by no means been a greater time to take a look at this legendary franchise.
However what in case you're simply seeking to get into the series for the primary time? There are so many Final Fantasy video games and spin-offs that it may be genuinely troublesome understanding the place to begin, and starting with the very first sport within the series is not essentially the appropriate reply, relying on what sort of expertise you are on the lookout for.
To make issues simpler in case you're a newcomer, then, we have put collectively an inventory of what we imagine to be essentially the most ultimate entry factors to the series. The following video games will not be solely consultant of the console era they debuted on, they're additionally improbable video games in their very own proper, and completely should not be missed in case you're seeking to get into Final Fantasy.
Final Fantasy 3 Pixel Remaster (PC, iOS, Android)
Whereas Final Fantasy 3 debuted on the NES, it did so solely in Japan. A real Western port hadn't been made obtainable till very just lately. There was a fully-fledged remake on the DS, however that is actually its personal beast, with further narrative parts and 3D graphics. In order for you a traditional expertise, then the Final Fantasy 3 Pixel Remaster is the way in which to go.
Out there on Steam, iOS, and Android units, the Pixel Remaster of this traditional freshens up the sport's visuals, whereas maintaining all the pieces else (principally) intact. Some quality-of-life parts assist to raise the expertise, too, akin to an on-screen map and a completion tracker for treasure chests.
So why Final Fantasy 3 particularly? Merely, it was the very best Final Fantasy of the NES period and launched the now iconic Job system which allow you to swap your social gathering members' class and talent set on the fly. This implies you've gotten tons of freedom to experiment with character builds, with out feeling locked into anyone class, nor with out shedding progress on the one you have already leveled up.
Final Fantasy 6 (SNES)
Whereas a Pixel Remaster for Final Fantasy 6 is on the way in which, the unique SNES launch has barely aged a day. That includes completely beautiful pixel graphics, a tremendously well-written story and tons of loveable characters, Final Fantasy 6 is solely probably the greatest RPGs ever made, interval.
FF6 eschews the aforementioned Job system in favor of fastened lessons that higher swimsuit every character and their persona. This additionally implies that all of them have distinctive parts that assist them to face out, turning into much more memorable than the clean slates of Final Fantasy 3. It was additionally the primary sport within the series to characteristic a feminine lead in Terra Branford.
And naturally, Final Fantasy 6 would not be practically as memorable if it wasn't for its villain-in-chief, Kefka Palazzo, a literal clown whose insanity and insane energy elevate him to turning into probably the most iconic antagonists in your entire series.
In the event you're fascinated by enjoying Final Fantasy 6 (and actually, why would not you be), we might strongly suggest ready for the Pixel Remaster model. The at the moment most available model, on cell units, is much from ultimate, giving the sport's characters a cartoonish look that does not match the grittier tone.
Final Fantasy 9 (PS1)
Whereas Final Fantasy 7 is unquestionably essentially the most prolific sport from the PS1 period, a powerful case might be made for Final Fantasy 9 simply being the higher sport. It is visually placing, even for a sport that got here out on Sony's 32-bit machine.
FF9 drops the arduous science-fiction angle of seven and eight, buying and selling it for one thing more fantastical, and thus more akin of Final Fantasies of outdated. What it beneficial properties is a bunch of loveable and diversified characters, however you should not let that idiot you. The story Final Fantasy 9 tells is likely one of the more mature ones within the series, and regardless of the cutesy aesthetic, actually is not afraid to get darkish when the narrative requires it.
Enjoying Final Fantasy 9 as we speak could not be simpler. The sport is available to obtain on all platforms together with PC, PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One and Nintendo Change.
Final Fantasy 10 (PS2)
Merely probably the greatest video games on the PS2, Final Fantasy 10 was arguably among the many finest trying titles ever on the time of launch. FF10 featured a more linear, character-driven story than its predecessors, however blended it with a turn-based battle system so polished you possibly can see your face in it.
FF10 blended issues up even additional with its distinctive Sphere Grid system, which eschewed conventional leveling up for an enormous board the place you possibly can assign stats and perks to every particular person character. It is a quirky strategy to stat constructing, actually, however one which's fantastically enjoyable in its novelty.
Final Fantasy 10 additionally featured the controversial Blitzball mini-game, which might be fiendishly immersive in case you let your self study its intricate mechanics. The modern-day equal would probably be Gwent from The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, in that Blitzball was virtually massive sufficient to be a sport in its personal proper, utterly distracting the participant from the principle story in the event that they so desired.
Very like Final Fantasy 9, 10 is available on all platforms due to the Final Fantasy 10 / 10-2 HD Remaster, which packs FF10 and its oddball sequel into one reasonably priced package deal. This model additionally significantly improves some facets of 10, together with including a completely new Sphere Grid to experiment with.
Final Fantasy 14 Online (PS4, PS5, PC)
In the event you're after a sport you'll be able to play in the long run, then look no additional than Final Fantasy 14 Online. The sport received off to an especially rocky begin when it launched in 2010, however since 2013's A Realm Reborn relaunch, the favored MMO (massively multiplayer on-line sport) has continued to ascend to new heights.
FF14's most up-to-date growth, Shadowbringers, blew gamers away upon launch with its heartfelt story alongside a litany of recent gameplay enhancements and beautiful areas to discover. The upcoming fourth growth, Endwalker, seems like it should do the identical when it launches on November 23, 2021.
Final Fantasy 14 excels in so many areas. It is a love letter to the broader series, with numerous references and story beats calling again to even the oldest video games within the series. It is received, fairly frankly, one of many best soundtracks of all time courtesy of Masayoshi Soken, that includes all the pieces from whimsical melodies to rip-roaring, rock-infused battle themes.
As an MMO, there is a bit more of a studying curve relating to studying how FF14 ticks. Its cooldown-based real-time fight and management strategies aren't fairly just like the video games that got here earlier than it. However in case you're keen to study the intricacies of how FF14 works, you are in for one of many most interesting on-line experiences available on the market, with an extremely pleasant neighborhood in addition.
The better part? Final Fantasy 14 is extraordinarily accessible. In the event you've by no means performed earlier than, Final Fantasy 14 provides a free trial that features the whole thing of A Realm Reborn alongside the award-winning Heavensward growth, permitting for play as much as stage 60 with no restrictions on playtime.
And there isn't any fear about locking your self behind anyone class, both. That includes the series' iconic Job system, you are free to play all lessons on a single character, although do observe that some are locked till you buy every growth.
Final Fantasy 7 Remake (PS4, PS5)
One of many newest and best Final Fantasies ever made, it could be controversial to say Final Fantasy 7 Remake blows the unique out of the water, but it surely's true. And whereas we love the FF7's PS1 roots, its remake takes one of many series' most unbelievable settings and offers it the beautiful overhaul it deserves.
The street to Final Fantasy 7 Remake wasn't a straightforward one, and the sport has an infamously troubled improvement historical past, initially being slated for a PS3 launch. Nonetheless, Sq. Enix made the appropriate name in releasing FF7R solely when it was prepared, as the top result's nothing in need of phenomenal.
Midgar and its characters look completely beautiful in 4K, and the sport both recreates or reimagines iconic scenes each respectfully and sometimes unpredictably. The stage of care that went into this undertaking is solely mesmerizing, from the improved Materia system and fast-paced techniques of the battle system, to the improbable remixed soundtracks and recognizable locales.
Whereas Final Fantasy 7 Remake is simply the primary of many components (encompassing many of the authentic sport's Disc 1), it takes that comparatively small first a part of the unique and fleshes it out into its personal factor. The Intergrade DLC on PS5 expands it much more, including Yuffie as a playable character along with her personal marketing campaign to play by way of.
Final Fantasy 7 Remake is what all remakes ought to aspire to be. It efficiently breathes new life into an aged favourite, but it surely goes a lot additional than that with further story beats, a revamped fight system, phenomenal writing and more. When you might wish to play the unique earlier than you take a look at Remake, it is actually not needed, as the sport shines as a standalone product, too.
Final Fantasy spin-offs
The following titles aren't essentially the very best to get into Final Fantasy with, however act as nice enhances to the principle series in case you're leaping in for the lengthy haul. Sadly, not all of those video games are available, however all value monitoring down in their very own proper.
Final Fantasy Techniques (PS1)
Techniques is not your common Final Fantasy. Set within the multiple-game-spanning world of Ivalice, Final Fantasy Techniques is a turn-based tactical RPG the place you command a small military on an isometric enjoying discipline. Brutally troublesome and with a tragically darkish story to match, Techniques is one for the hardcore.
Chocobo Racing (PS1)
For one thing more light-hearted, Final Fantasy's reply to Mario Kart is likely to be value trying into. It is actually not as polished as Nintendo's stalwart racer, however a good sufficient spin-off that cleverly integrates a few of FF's sillier characters right into a madcap kart racing sport.
Dissidia 012 (PSP)
The true Final Fantasy fan's spin-off, Dissidia 012 is a 3D fighter that pulls in characters from all throughout the series to do battle with and towards one another. Protagonists like Cloud Strife and Lightning are playable, alongside social gathering members like Tifa Lockhart and Yuna.