Final Fantasy XV’s Luna PC Mod Case Looks Stellar

With the recent announcement of Final Fantasy XV coming to PC, Nvidia have revealed their own custom build Geforce Garage Luna PC case.

No word if this will be sold later on but chances are they might throw it in for a giveway when the game launches on PC early next year.

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Final Fantasy XV Coming to PC Early 2018

After months of waiting, PC gamers will finally be able to play the latest installment in the Final Fantasy franchise early next year.

The trailer was accidentally leaked. As expected from a late PC release, the version will include a host of new features such as improved framerate (that doesn’t stutter), 4K textures, enhanced physics such as hair, and Dolby Atmos.

One key feature is being able to play the game in first person. I can see that causing some serious headaches though especially with the warp strikes.

 

Dissidia NT Closed BETA Schedule Announced

Square Enix’s highly anticipated Final Fantasy brawler,Dissidia NT, will be hosting its closed BETA between August 26 to September 4. Players who haven’t registered for the BETA will have until August 15th to do so. You can try your luck by applying here.

Square will probably host another open BETA closer to the game’s launch.  Dissidia NT launches in early 2018 exclusively on PS4.

Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age – Review

It’s been more than 10 years since Final Fantasy XII came out and within that time frame we’ve seen the series as well as the RPG genre evolve and change radically. While it offers a fresh coat of paint and some new content, is it enough to stand on its feet in today’s gaming world?

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Unlike the other main entries, Final Fantasy XII takes place in the land of Ivalice—a separate universe where games like Final Fantasy Tactics and the underrated Vagrant Story take place. While still a fantasy setting, Ivalice is a world filled with political instabilities and war. In Final Fantasy XII two countries (Dalmasca and Nabradia) are trapped between two regions (Archadia and Rozaria) who are at war with each other. Princess Ashe from Dalmasca decides to marry the Prince of Nabradia, Rasler, in order to make their countries stronger and put an end to the war. Unfortunately their power is no match and during the conflict Rasler gets killed adding insult to injury. Despite the game focusing a lot on Ashe and her journey of redemption, the game decides to shift its narrative to Vaan, a Damlascan street rat who seemingly has no purpose other than wanting to become a Sky Pirate. It’s during these phases where the game’s narrative sort of loses its focus and ends up being a journey for two characters with mostly two different objectives. The reason why this is so jarring is due to Square Enix execs forcing a teenage male protagonist (Vaan) as the lead which angered the creative director, causing him to leave the project half-way through production.

Despite that, Final Fantasy XII offers quite a diverse cast with pirates and fallen soldiers to name a few. People have often compared the cast and setting to Star Wars which clearly shows, especially during the opening war scene that looks like something straight from the movies. But it doesn’t feel rip-off by any means.

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The gameplay and exploration is what truly makes Final Fantasy XII stand out. Often referred to as an offline MMO, the game lets you take on multiple quests in various towns, each of which offer a unique setting and tone. The most prominent are the hunting quests which are probably my favorite. You could spend hours ignoring the main plot to do these actives which is a stand out in a series that is known mostly to be linear or limited during certain sections. Dungeons are also equally massive allowing multiple pathways that offer great rewards. This is by far the most ‘RPG’ Final Fantasy has ever felt. However that doesn’t necessarily make it feel good. These dungeons and worlds can feel a bit too large leading with few checkpoints in between. These could lead to some frustrating moments where your party needs to heal or take breather only to realize that you still have ways to go before reaching the next save crystal.

The combat system is another game changer. Unlike the old turn based battle system, Final Fantasy XII is the first in the series to ditch it in favor of a more MMO twist to it. Enemies appear on the map and you can choose to engage or feel from them. The Gambit System is a means of letting you pretty much program your characters to take care of themselves during combat. If you’re good at it you pretty won’t even need to worry about pushing buttons unless you’re dealing with Quickinings (the game’s limit break mode that includes button prompts). Adding to that players will be able to switch their jobs now and it’s done easier thanks to the Zodiac expansion which was never released in English. It is easily the most flexible battle system in the series and knowing how to use it feels like a game on its own. On the other hand battles tend to feel a bit slow paced. Coming from the action heavy Final Fantasy XV, XII requires more patience. The remaster features a fast forward button which thankfully eliminates a lot of the tediousness and makes grinding a lot easier. But the fact you have a fast forward button sort of proves how badly paced the combat was.

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Presentation wise Final Fantasy XII looks exceptional, especially for a PS2 game. The added HD textures and improved lighting with darker shadows really make each scene pop out. The remastered soundtrack is another great plus bringing a more realistic orchestra feel as opposed to the synth composed OST of the PS2. It’s by no means my favorite FF OST but it has a lot of great tracks that stand out. Sadly it lacks a 60 FPS frame rate and no pro support which is a big letdown considering how great KH 1.5 + 2.5 turned out (offering both 4K and 60 FPS).

Final Fantasy XII is certainly the most polarizing entry of the franchise. Many consider it the last true FF game with its emphasis on RPG elements, while others feel it’s a bit on the dull side. The heavy political story and plot ends up making it feel like you’re watching an episode of Game of Thrones (the boring ones with plenty of talking). The characters themselves are not inertly bad by any means, except for Vaan, but I couldn’t help feel a bit bored during most of the story. But even then with its gambit system and a vast world to explore, Final Fantasy XII is an entry that should not be missed.

7.5/10

Final Fantasy XIV: Stormblood – Initial Review

It’s hard to imagine that it’s been 4 years since Final Fantasy XIV’s A Realm Reborn came out. What started off as a disaster way back in 2010, Final Fantasy XIV reboot in 2013 has managed to make it one of the hottest MMO’s to come out in recent memory. Now with its third expansion, Stormblood, it’s safe to say this MMO is not going anywhere.

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But what makes Final Fantasy XIV so good? For one it helps bridge the gap between the classic RPG we’ve seen in World of Warcraft with more recent flashy/hack and slash interpretations such as Black Desert Online. But what’s more enjoyable about FF XIV has to be its story. Typically MMO’s expansion are followed by mundane fetch quests (which is still here) except in in XIV’s case we get more narrative, cutscenes, and characters who join you on your quest. What happens in the previous expansion plays a big role in how you will play the next one. It’s so important that up until recently, Square Enix did not allow players to skip straight to the expansion. And even then it’s asking for a hefty $25 which is basically the same price you’re paying for the expansion itself. Short answer, it’s not worth it. If you are indeed coming into Final Fantasy XIV then it’s best to enjoy it from the beginning otherwise a huge piece of what makes Stormblood good will be lost on you.

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While Heavensward took you to the northern parts where dragons sleep, Stormblood goes to a whole new continent. Featuring a more Asian inspired take where Samurai’s and martial art masters reign. Unlike the previous expansion the plot really starts to get more complicated with multiple tribes and politics involved. It actually gave me a nostalgia trip during the early parts of Final Fantasy XIV but here it tends to go deeper with a huge emphasis on war.

New to Stormblood is the ability to swim. At first I was excited at the idea of underwater battles, something more akin to Final Fantasy X but alas that was not the case. Instead swimming ends up being just a feature like flying which only serves of taking you from A to B.

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But let’s face it, the biggest addition to this expansion aside from the plot has to be the two new jobs: Samurai and Red Mage who serve as DPS or combat classes. Many online have argued that the decision not to add more variety with healers or tanks is a missed opportunity which hopefully will be rectified in a future patch or expansion. But since Final Fantasy XIV allows players to switch jobs on the fly this shouldn’t be that big of an issue especially thanks to a more recent update that makes it easier. Previously players would have to stop mid-way through their leveling to specialize in another job. For instance my Gladiator would have to reach level 30 and learn to be a mage at level 10 before I could become a Paladin. Now players would only need to take one quest to become a Paladin. It completely eliminates the unnecessary padding which makes players more open to try more classes. Of course you could always opt for a level boost for $25 but where’s the fun in that?

Visually speaking Stormblood is gorgeous. Huge temples, mountains, and ancient Chinese cities are among the many places you’ll visit. What makes it stand out is the simple, sort of clean look mixed with small details of the texture work. It may lack the Witcher-esque detail found in Black Desert Online but it certainly manages to stand on its own. I mean considering this was a game designed to run PS3’s the game manages to hold quite well by today’s graphical standards.

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Final Fantasy XIV A Realm Reborn started as a celebration of FF games and Stormblood continues that tradition. The idea of being able to fight Ex-Death (the main villain of Final Fantasy V) is something that fans would truly appreciate. It almost feels like the smash brothers of Final Fantasy games, except if Smash Brothers was an MMO—now that’s kind of an interesting idea.

If you’re still on the fence of whether or not you’d want to get into Final Fantasy XIV then Stormblood may be the one to convince you. It’s one of the few MMO’s out there that still use a monthly paid subscription model and that’s only because it manages to prove its value through its rich content. I’ve played plenty of MMO’s in the past few years and none of them managed to capture the magic that Stormblood offers.

9/10

Here’s Our First Look at FF XV’s Second DLC: Episode Prompto

The second FF XV story DLC will focus on the gunslinger, Prompto. Here’s our first look at some gameplay.

I have to admit, the first time I saw the thumbnail I thought this was footage of the next MGS game. A third person shooter isn’t the first thing I think about when imagining Final Fantasy game but then again seeing as how this focuses on character who uses guns it makes sense. This was also not only time FF dabbled in the third person shooting scene.

Final Fantasy XV: Episode Prompto will arrive June 27th. The update will also included the much requested off-road driving with the Regalia Type-D.

Dissidia Final Fantasy Nt Leaked for PS4

The long rumored Dissidia: Final Fantasy arcade game is finally coming to PS4 next year.

UPDATE: Square Enix has now officially revealed the game.

The E3 announcement was leaked early thanks to an Amazon listing. Here’s what we know:

  • Final Fantasy, everything you could ever want – Over 20 playable Final Fantasy heroes and villains to play, over ten iconic battle arenas, legendary summons, tons of equippable weapons and moogles
  • The return from Eos – Noctis makes his triumphant return to the PS4 as a combatant, fighting to save the world of Dissidia
  • Legendary narrative – Dive into an all-new Final Fantasy story, written by writer Kazushige Nojima (Fantasy VII Remake, Final Fantasy XV, Final Fantasy X, Kingdom Hearts, and Kingdom Hearts II)
  • Your fantasy. Your fight – Each battle you wage, you will gain XP and gil to deepen the customization of your Final Fantasy champion – from EX skills to weapons to skins, level up
  • Only the brave survive – The bravery combat system allows a much deeper and more methodical approach to the fighting game genre, separating luck from skill

The big plus here is that there will be a story mode. Dissidia story has been a bit messy in the past, most relegated to fan service, but it’s decent. Hopefully with the leap from PSP to PS4 we can expect a richer a narrative experience.