I’ve never watched a more powerful cut scene in a Final Fantasy game than I did in Square-Enix’s remaster of PSP classic Final Fantasy Type-O. Seeing one of the beloved birds known as Chocobo’s die pulled on my heartstrings and this was right at the start. It was apparent from the offset that this Final Fantasy game certainly keeps up the fantastic story telling qualities that the franchise is best known for. I was unaware of Type-O. I owned Sony’s last generation handheld yet never knew of this games existence. This is because it was a Japanese only game that thanks to this remaster has now come to the west.
The story is traditional Final Fantasy. Jam packed full of magic, machina and, this time, politics. Type-O is more militarised as it surrounds a group of 14 “students” known as Class Zero. These guys are your very own team of elite soldiers each with their own individual personality and game play style. They are also defenders of the land of Orience who are tasked with driving back the Militesi forces. It’s basically 14 snot nosed kids with weapons and magic, some wise cracking, some boring and grinding versus the Militesi who are stereotypical stern and regimented antagonists. It’s easy to follow.
You choose three of these 14 snot nosed kids to play as during missions which are played from the third person perspective. Gone is the tradition Final Fantasy turn based combat, in its place, real time free flowing variety similar to Crisis Core. It is satisfying trying to work out the best members of Class Zero to play as. Ace with his playing cards of death? Duel wielding gunslinger King? Or kung fu kid Eight? There’s someone for everyone. Different rooms in Type-O’s hub area of the Vermillion Peristylium, a university of sorts, can be accessed to upgrade magic spells, purchase new weapons and equipment, take on side missions, breed Chocobo’s and kit out your team. There is loads of depth here.
Summon’s are my favourite part of Type-O. They are known as Eidolons and they are badass to the core! The first one you will find is the legendary Ifrit, a fire demon who can use Hellfire and Meteor’s to take down foes. He fills the screen and is super powerful but it comes at the cost of speed and you don’t have access to him for long before a cool down period begins. Not only that but the Class Zero member who summons him or any Eidolon die and has to be replaced by another member of the team so while these things are awesome to play as, you have to be smart about when to use them.
The visuals in this HD remaster are sub-par at best. Cut scenes are marvellous to watch but in game cut scenes tend to get ugly. Blocky NPC’s are common sight which is inconsistent to the main characters which have had a little more attention to them. It sticks out a mile. Same can be said about the environments which are nothing more than glorified corridor’s. Towns and cities don’t feel large even though they appear that way.
Class Zero has loads of variety
Gameplay is fast paced and fun
Deep satisfying combat
Eidolons are kick ass!...
...But don’t last very long.
Awful tacked on strategy element
Final Fantasy Type-O HD is the most recent game to undergo the remaster treatment but it’s not for everybody. Fast paced, fun combat and an intriguing story keeps Type-O’s head above the water whilst graphical inconsistencies, boring environments and a tragic strategy minigame pull it down. One thing is for sure though, Eidolons are awesome!