Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII Review

Final Fantasy 13 Lightning returns. The main protagonist of the FF13 series has returned to close the chapter if the series. Following the mixed responses from the first 2, it seemed that the 2nd game based largely on Serah’s quest to find lightning was a step in the right direction but how does this one do? Does this game do justice to the series?

Let’s start at the beginning; Lightning is thrust into a time whereby she has just a little less than 2 weeks from the end of the world and all would come to an end. Lightning, who happens to be the weapon of divine intervention has been charged with saving as many souls as possible before the end of the world.

Lightning Returns Final Fantasy XIII Screen Shot 01

Touted as the spiritual successor to traditional turned based RPG’s the first game dared to be different by introducing the paradigm shift battle system which never quite hit the expectations and fell somewhat flat. In the 2nd game, with its further improved system and Pokémon like battle system, it seemed like Square Enix could be on the right track. The 3rd game basically fields Lightning alone in a Schema affair which allows Lightning to switch between in battle. Lightning herself can switch between any 3 at any given point in a fight. Each battle would have the player switching between the 3 schemas or outfit to overcome the battle situation. As you guessed, I’m looking at FFX-2, if you like playing dress up, there are many different outfit combinations to go with. Each outfit would govern how you play as it translates directly to her fighting abilities and skills. To further improve that, each schema can be customized to suit how you want to approach each fight. All in all, the battle system proved to be initially a challenge to pick up but once nailed, it served well as an intricate fighting system.

Lightning Returns Final Fantasy XIII Screen Shot 02

Questing and missions are the only way to grow Lightning’s character in the game be it her HP or attacks and stats. This non-linearity could mean a good thing but there were times in which I was left wondering if Lightning would be able to overcome a particular enemy. Many a times, the player would be left guessing but hey fret not, lightning can escape from battle.

The music and sound of Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII returns is pleasant for the most part in fact some of the tracks would grow on you play the game. It’s style is still mostly orchestra pieces.

Lightning Returns Final Fantasy XIII Screen Shot 03

Overall, I would say Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII does a pretty decent job closing off the series and gives existing FF13 players a closure on the series. The game is challenging, fills in the story gaps nicely and the world is nice to explore accompanied by a nice musical score. If you’re a fan of the FF13 series and final fantasy, be sure to check this one out.

Ratings 3.5 stars out of 5

by Kenneth Choong
© POPCulture Online 2014, All Rights Reserved.

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