Final Fantasy 3
Reviewed by Greg Colombo
Welcome to FF3. The third installment in the Final Fantasy (US)
series is the best one yet! Squaresoft outdid themselves again
with this title. 1,000 years after the War of the Magi, the war
that nearly made humans extinct, things seem safe for the future.
But "magic", the force that was the entire purpose of the War of
the Magi, is coming back. A frozen "Esper" has been found in Narshe,
a large industrial city in the north. Espers are the sources of magic.
Now, the evil Empire is attempting to restore magic and take the
Esper, then conquer the world. But there is a band of rebels in their
way: The Returners! Meet the magic-using Terra, the thief (oops,
treasure hunter) Locke, the adorable Mog, and many other characters
as you try to stop Kefka!
Graphics 10 out of 10
The artists that did the game put things together well. The characters
don't look so chunky, like they seemed in the previous Final Fantasies.
The background designs in the battle scenes were drawn well, and make
it seem like you're in the desert, river, whatever. Spells look really
cool in this game, ranging from a simple Fire spell to the greatest of
all, Ultima! Characters have many different poses and looks, depending
on their status and emotions. You can even see them blush! The Chocobo
(ostrich-like birds) and the Airship views were done in brilliant Mode 7.
Great work by Squaresoft on the whole!
Music and Sound 9 out of 10
The music and sound effects sounded like they should. The music sounded
like it was appropriate for the scene at hand. The Airship contains an upbeat
track that can get annoying. The nice thing about the music is that you can
tell whether a city is friendly or not, or if a certain thing is going on (the
castle is under attack, etc.) The battle music can often get tedious as well.
The sound effects for the spells were great, sounding just like you'd imagine.
The exceptions: Ice and Bio come to mind. Character attack effects were
good, again sounding like a real weapon should sound. There should have
been multiple "miss" sounds, though, depending on your weapon. Great
work here, too, but it could use a little touching up.
Game Challenge 9.5 out of 10
Challenge? You're asking me about the game's challenge? Believe me
when I tell you, this game is TOUGH! It is required that you build
levels if you want to progress. You may find yourself spending hours
at a time building levels and learning spells! Also, there are a few "two
and two together" puzzles, such as one in Locke's scenario (consult the
manual.) What are you supposed to do with a Clock Key? Wind a clock!
This opens a door. There were some parts in the game where a little
less challenge would have been nice (crushing ceiling in the Zone eater.)
The main battle tight spot is when you have less than 4 characters and
one of them falls. You only get minimal HP when you restore life with
an item, so it can be hard to get up to speed. Great job!
Game Play-Fun 10 out of 10
FF3 has many good hours of play, plus a battery-backed save feature.
The game timer will stop at 99:59, but it is quite possible to go well
past that. The number of "steps" is also recorded, making it possible
to have contests with the count. For example, how few steps can you
take to get Mog in your party? An NP reader got 4,735. It's fun going
through the game and watching events unfold, especially in the cinema
scenes. There are a couple of funny bits, and some things may be
confusing at times. But other than that, this is a great, not to mention
The game can be frustrating, when you can't beat a boss or solve a
puzzle. A couple hints: Listen to townspeople. Sometimes they can give
you the clue you need. GAIN EXP. If you aren't at a high level (55) when
you try to defeat Kefka for the last time, you're in trouble. And lastly,
STICK WITH IT. Go through for a great ending! The bosses are always
challenging, and it may take many tries to beat them. I don't have much
else to say. All in all, those who keep trying will win.
Replayability 10 out of 10
Replayability? It never gets better. There are many different ways to
go through the game, because it's so easy to make it harder. Some
answers can influence your game greatly. For example, at the banquet
(midgame) what you say can change a lot. Minus the Tintinabar could
make you lose a lot of fights. If you ever get tired of the game, the
Game Genie (R) can change things forever too. And if all else fails,
sell the game. You can make a lot of money since the game is out of stock.
Game Value 10 out of 10
My copy was for $55 (that was with S&H.) It was worth the cash. You'll
get a lot of replay value and fun value out of this game. Not much else here.
Controls & Options 9 out of 10
The game's control setup works well, and its two-player battle is a great
feature. You can select text box backgrounds, and even the color of your
text! The magic types can be reorganized, too. Use Cure and Life magic a
lot, and you can rearrange things by priority. If you prefer items to do
the healing, you can do that too. It's not easy for a beginner to make a
mistake with the controls, but they can easily make a strategy mistake.
(HINT: Be sure to check out the first building you see after Locke joins
you in Narshe!)
Overall 10 out of 10
Running out of time. Incredible game. Nuff' said. This game is highly
replayable and has great graphics and sound, harnessing Mode 7! And
it's FUN. That's the key. FUN. Squaresoft worked hard on this. Great job,
Square, and good luck in the future.