Divisive RPG Final Fantasy XIII has received its most damning print review to date, being awarded a pathetic 40% by an overseas rag evidently free of the need to toady up to Square’s advertising department. The game is a “swindle” and a “joke” it is said, and many who have played the game will likely sympathise with the criticisms made.

The game received the following score:

System: 1/10 “Such a crude system barely warrants being called an RPG at all.”

Scenario: 2/10 “An epic tear jerker.”

Graphics: 9/10 “Top marks here.”

Sound: 7/10 “Mostly quality.”

Enthusiasm: 1/10 “As if you could play this for 100 hours! I could put up with 8.”

Total: 4/10 “To think it got this bad…”

Criticisms include:

The game is complete linearity until the open areas near the end. You can’t even backtrack.

Of all the RPGs I’ve played in recent years, this is the first which has been so linear that it’s little more than riding an amusement park ride.

I had heard the opinion that “It’s amazing once you get to Chapter 11,” but why should you spend 20 or 30 hours on a game to get to the only enjoyable part? Just how do they intend to make me play this? Do they think I’m some kind of masochist?

He goes on to deride the gameplay for having become a button mashing puzzle game with no real strategy or RPG elements and a plethora of annoying features, saying the game as a whole is little more than a “digital novel” of sorts.

For such a game to approach 2 million copies sold must be due solely to the strength of the Final Fantasy brand, he opines, calling it in closing the “biggest swindle in gaming history” and the “biggest joke of 2009.”

The review, in Chinese:


Final Fantasy has never been so divisive and polarising; even Square Enix’s CEO seems somewhat sheepish about the title… Hardly the reception the supposed crowning masterpiece of the series should be receiving?

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    Comment by Anonymous
    06:12 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Why can't people make their own opinions of games? When it comes out, rent it. If you like the game then go buy it, but if you don't, just shut the fuck up.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:42 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    1) None of us have played the game yet, they have. Their opinioms are more valid than ours.

    2) We don't want to waste any cash on a game that turns out to be shit.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:21 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    well, this is Final Fantasy- a commercially successful franchise.

    It would take an idiot to not realize that they care about raking in the profits rather than making their fans happy, thus they haven't done anything to improve the lot of their games. They expect that doing something that worked a few times will keep working over time and not get old.

    So the potential that you're wasting your money on a Final Fantasy game is absurdly high.

    But then again, in any video games, I personally find the probability that I am wasting my money and time I could be using to advance myself to be very high.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:56 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    FFXIII becoming the unlucky number?

    Shows that a brand name can take hits to if it slacks somewhere.

    Avatar of Fox89
    Comment by Fox89
    05:06 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    And a good thing to!

    I look forward to playing the English release so I can discover first hand what these people are on about. If it is poor, I hope it gets the criticism it deserves for being poor.

    I'm a huge Final Fantasy fan, but I'm able to accept and criticise failings if and when they are there. This is what stoic fanboys need to learn to do as well. Because if they keep saying "No it's awesome really!" even in the face of a game that is perhaps actually quite poor, the franchise will never improve!

    So a message to all fanboys: If you love your franchise as much as you claim, stop mindlessly defending it! Otherwise you'll eventually just end up with crap.

    Avatar of El Chaos
    Comment by El Chaos
    06:19 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well said, Fox. I highly doubt that "professional" reviews will be any harsh with it, though. Just look at GTAIV, Halo 3 and MGS4.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:40 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Look at Superman 64 and Rouge Warrior.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:29 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    It being "poor" is not a consensus. Stop acting like if anyone likes it they are lying to themselves.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:54 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    It sounds exactly like FFX, which was widely popular. Somehow I don't think FFXIII is going to suffer much in sales.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:31 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:21 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    From what I've been hearing from people who have been the game, the game is a huge let down. I'll have to play it for myself but seeing how it resembles FFX in a lot of ways, I'm sure I'm going to have to force myself to beat it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:22 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    chinese review. dont care.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:24 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The idea that linear is a synonym for "bad" is just moronic.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:50 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The idea that "too linear" can't be a valid complaint for a video game is perhaps moreso.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:15 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    A valid complaint yes. A valid condemnation no.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:50 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    When it's so linear it's literally a straight line, it is.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:23 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    sadly this piece of shit will sell like crazy in the west, despite the fact we have had for-warning of how terrible this game is. Nothing will stop the FF fanfaggots from lining SquareEnix's pockets.

    Avatar of Fox89
    Comment by Fox89
    08:55 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    (Psst, I know a whole bunch of people on forums etc. who have played the Japanese import and love it to bits!)

    I get the feeling FFXIII is a love/hate game for the FF fanbase, like XII was. Only instead of world-driven plot and battle system being the controversial areas, this time it is extreme linearity and lack of towns to explore.

    Personally, I like one set path through a dull dungeon. I play Final Fantasy for the story and battle system, so I'm perfectly happy to bear with a single set path. I seem to recall the "dungeon crawling" element of FFX was the same for much of the game.

    Avatar of Jimmykitty
    Comment by Jimmykitty
    08:09 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I will play it to see for myself... but I admit, the news so far has not been good.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:08 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    lol. How can these guys be a serious reviewer, they even said they didn't make it more than 8 hours into the game. Here's an idea, if you're going to call a game crap play the whole thing first, lol. This is like watching the first ten minutes of an action movie and saying it sucks because the action part didn't start until fifteen minutes in. This review = untrustworthy. Having played the game I can personally say this review is a bunch of BS.

    Avatar of Fox89
    Comment by Fox89
    03:14 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I think the meaning of the 8 hours thing was "This style of game is acceptable for about 8 hours" rather than "I only played 8 hours".

    Don't hold me to that though.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:19 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I interpreted the same meaning as Fox89. Please don't take translations from this article too seriously.

    Avatar of El Chaos
    Comment by El Chaos
    03:21 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'm currently wondering about Final Fantasy XV... the old Squaresoft managed to release three "main" games in each platform (first trilogy on the Famicom, second one on Super Famicom, third one on PlayStation and fourth one on PlayStation 2), and I get it that Versus XIII isn't a main title, regardless of the fact that it'll also be released on PlayStation 3, pretty much like X-2... will Square Enix, in their current shape, be able to keep on this tradition of sorts, not to mention that all those consoles where pretty much the undisputed kings of the hill in their respective hardware generations, which the PS3 most definitely isn't?

    It's kind of a "gamer gamble", a mere pastime. I guess they won't, it'll be kicked forward to the next gen.

    Avatar of GANTZ Playboy!
    Comment by GANTZ Playboy!
    02:35 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Who cares it's got cute girls in it. I remember hearing all this buzz about the "Durge of Cerberus" from a friend and then he played it, finished it and was all dejected their wasn't "More to it"- He was all into "Kingdom Hearts 2" and stuff...plays alot of "Warcraft". He'll be first in-line for this just cause it's a "FF" title.
    BTW...I'm loving the New names & Avatars...I wonder why they don't go on the forums much. DeathCrunch? FappingTime?- lol. I love the look on KOETA's avatar- very amusing. I smell a 2nd Renisaence for Sancom.

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:52 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    he can't think for himself. He lets advertisements and hype make decisions for him. I bet he'd deny it, because all those ads say "You're special, you're smart and can think for yourself. Buy this game, because you're intelligent, aren't you?"

    Avatar of Fapping Time
    Comment by Fapping Time
    02:20 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    nope, still don't care, still gonna get, cause I got the moneys...

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:49 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    "Scenario: 2/10 “An epic tear jerker."

    Fuckin win

    Avatar of KiriCat
    Comment by KiriCat
    02:53 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    seeeeee...... i said ff sucked, and no one believed me lol

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:26 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    no KiriCat sucks

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:38 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    How cute

    It is still the best RPG of the last few years

    Comment by Anonymous
    07:33 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)


    I actually give a damn about the characters and the plot. It's not "save the princess, crystal, pokemon, etc."

    You have androgynous-looking leads for the sake of the 16-year-old girls who will masturbate over them and effeminate Japanese boys who cannot grow facial hair.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:23 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Persona 4 & 3, Dragon Age Origins, Tales of Graces, Lost Odyssey and Demon's Souls would like a word with you

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:17 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I have FF13, however I do admit that the game lacked luster compared to all its earlier releases. Usually when I get a FF game, i'll play through it constantly til completion. But with this release, I'm just playing like at most twice a week and taking breaks inbetween, the rest of the time spent playing other games instead.

    Avatar of Rem
    Comment by Rem
    04:13 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)


    Avatar of Jeedwi
    Comment by Jeedwi
    04:13 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Impossible to get lost and no need for a strategy guide. Woohoo!

    Avatar of Tateha
    Comment by Tateha
    03:44 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    so what if ff13 is linear like a book? while the criticisms are probably warranted, it'll still buy simply for the experience, isn't that what most people play it for anyways?

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:41 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Ironically, it will never be admitted, but we should all obviously know why the game is so linear with no back tracking. Because one version can't be better than the other, and the version holding it back is on 3 DVDs.

    No matter how much they want to play the PR bullshit game, bringing this game to the 360 on DVD and not planning ahead to properly work around the DVD medium's limits has pulled this game's quality down. Not in graphics or sound mind you, but in gameplay, the most important part everyone seems to forget.

    Avatar of Fox89
    Comment by Fox89
    04:18 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Wrong way round, graphics and sound are what HAS been sacrificed for the Xbox. The 360 version has more highly compressed audio and CGI. The native resolution is also lower on the 360 I think.

    There are also plenty of RPGs with multiple discs on the 360 that do allow backtracking and a larger degree of freedom: Lost Odyssey and Star Ocean: TLH are the two I have sitting on my shelf.

    Avatar of El Chaos
    Comment by El Chaos
    05:51 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    And there's proof of the former (especially the lowered native resolution)... where?

    Avatar of Fox89
    Comment by Fox89
    06:05 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    I looked it up again and I can't find the native resolution thing anywhere, so I was wrong on that one. Must have picked it up from a rumour or forum post or something.

    Just compressed video and audio then. Which makes sense, you can save so much disc space without losing too much quality just by compressing. Ever seen a compressed .AVI file next to an uncompressed one? You lose minuscule amounts of quality for a huge size reduction.

    Comment by Anonymous
    17:58 11/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Original starter of this line of discussion here. Basically those games you mentioned on the 360 were built around the idea of DVD's originally. FFX III was not.

    Instead the 360 version was started half way through the development (I'm taking this from the day the 360 version was announced from the time of the original announcement and release). So the game had to be completely retooled, but they couldn't get it rebuilt from the ground up.

    So now we have something that was probably meticulously torn apart and put back together and a deadline, and the game itself will never reach the same level of quality that was intended. This is all because SE got greedy for pay off money and didn't realize until it was too late that they had lost more money and reputation for doing so.

    So, in the end, if they had not fucked around with the 360 for FF XIII (Or just released two different versions without detracting from the original PS3 versions intentions) then this whole mess of a game could have been avoided.

    Avatar of El Chaos
    Comment by El Chaos
    03:02 13/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Anon 17:58: You're basing your assumptions on basically nothing. Square Enix never showed anything, any footage of the game at all, that isn't already in the game, save maybe for the promised graphical quality in the original E3 2006, but we know it was a fully pre-rendered FMV anyways.

    There's literally no proof of any contents of the game's "original version" being cut for the retail one.

    Next time you want to discuss, bring some stuff to the table so we can actually discuss something rather than just run around in circles.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:39 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    How can people take this seriously when he says himself he barely played the game?

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:59 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    There's always Final Fantasy XIII Versus.

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:36 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    it's FINAL FANTASY Versus XIII u moron

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:37 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    He's a moron for saying the name incorrectly?

    Comment by Anonymous
    04:22 11/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Actually, going by the game's logo, he caps locked the right part.

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:38 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Maybe if we point at it, Anon 04:36 will realize he Capslocked the wrong part.

    Comment by Anonymous
    Comment by Anonymous
    04:03 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    Isn't possible to sankaku to post, for a change, something about a review telling good things about the FF XIII? I mean... toady up or not, I suppose they give some argument about why this FF would not be as bad as it has been said, so it would be good to see all sides of this discussion about the game.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:38 10/01/2010 # ! Neutral (0)

    The first post was a Famitsu review, giving a 39/40, all the fan reactions have been negative though.

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