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Final Fantasy XIII (Xbox 360) artwork

Final Fantasy XIII (Xbox 360) review


"Final Fantasy XIII (Xbox360) – by eviltb "



Final Fantasy XIII (Xbox360) – by eviltb

Before you all groan, yes this is another review for the much-debated FFXIII. There are loads of reviews splashed about the Internet about the ups and downs of this particular game, but I’m going to come at this from a different angle. No, not the fan-boy angle nor even the hater angle. I’m not going to go on about the wooden story and clichéd dialogue or how the battle system made me long for the return to turn-based action. I won’t even mention the facts the Eidolon summons in this game are totally pointless! I’m reviewing this game from the perspective of the Completionist. You know the kind of player I mean; the one guy who you know will spend hours and hours in front of a game just so he can see that secret little easter-egg movie that you can only unlock by playing the game for hours and hours! Completionists have undergone a transformation in recent years, especially with the current-gen systems. Nowadays, such gamers are known as Trophy Hunters or – more derogatory – Achievement Whores.

Now for the dedicated score whore, FFXIII presents a challenge. To get the full 1000 gamerscore (GS) requires time and effort. We’re talking 100-120 hours, possibly even more! After 60 hours play on the main storyline, I ended up with 600GS. Pretty good I thought, especially since I aim for at least 60% completion with all the games I play. The points I collected where obviously the story ones, plus a few for getting max damage, doing a few missions and maxing out certain roles. As I finished the game I thought while it was good, I missed being able to play this type of game at my own pace. The last JRPG I played was Lost Odyssey and while that took me over 100hours to get through, I didn’t feel like it was wasted. I actually felt like I achieved something! I didn’t need to be uber in order to conquer the game and get through its myriad of optional boss monsters. But FFXIII actually demands this. It’s the fact that you cannot unlock the top-level Crystarium until AFTER you’ve finished the game that compounds this. After speaking to friends who have also played the game – and I may add loved it more than I did – you seem to get the most out of the game by finishing it. That shouldn’t be correct, should it? Surely you should get the most out of the game before you complete it, and then you can mop up those little bits afterwards?

For the ultimate score whore, this game would probably rate a 1 or a 2 at best. For 120 hours you could play games like TMNT 30 times. That’s 30,000GS versus 1000GS. If you’re thinking about your points and what games you can roll through, FFXIII is best left until you hit your 100k, the ultimate whore benchmark. As I said, I spent some 60 hours just getting through the game once and I’m really not looking forward to setting another 60 hours aside just to max out the game to 1000GS.

In conclusion, FFXIII isn’t a bad game. FF fans will lap it up, especially the proper Completionists. Those who know what a FF games means to them personally could feel a little jaded. Yes the replay is there but do I have to sacrifice my sanity for it? The grind for those points is just so long it’s almost like there are two games in one; the linear story and the free-roam. Is Squares ultimate goal to turn us all into whor- I mean, Completionists!? It certainly seems so from this players’ POV.

Rating: 6/10

eviltb's avatar
Community review by eviltb (April 26, 2010)

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zippdementia posted April 27, 2010:

Nice to see a review from a different perspective. It's good to know your audience and you know there's a wealth of FFXIII reviews out there already. This takes the argument in a different direction, so that's cool.
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CoarseDragon posted April 27, 2010:

Long, long before there were trophies I was a completionist. Always trying to get the most bang for my buck - level 99 or bust! If you want to accomplish everything the game has to offer you do need to spend a lot of time with it (I have over 200 hours invested at the final chapter).

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