Final Fantasy (video game)

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Final Fantasy
FF1 USA boxart.jpg
North American cover art
Developer(s) Square
Publisher(s) Square
Nintendo (NES & GBA)
Director(s) Hironobu Sakaguchi
Producer(s) Masafumi Miyamoto
Programmer(s) Nasir Gebelli
Artist(s) Yoshitaka Amano
Composer(s) Nobuo Uematsu
Series Final Fantasy
Genre(s) Role-playing
Mode(s) Single-player

Final Fantasy [lower-alpha 1] is a fantasy role-playing video game developed and published by Square in 1987. It is the first game in Square's Final Fantasy series, created by Hironobu Sakaguchi. Originally released for the NES, Final Fantasy was remade for several video game consoles and is frequently packaged with Final Fantasy II in video game collections. The story follows four youths called the Light Warriors, who each carry one of their world's four elemental orbs which have been darkened by the four Elemental Fiends. Together, they quest to defeat these evil forces, restore light to the orbs, and save their world.

Fantasy Genre of literature, film, television and other artforms

Fantasy is a genre of speculative fiction set in a fictional universe, often inspired by real world myth and folklore. Its roots are in oral traditions, which then became literature and drama. From the twentieth century it has expanded further into various media, including film, television, graphic novels, manga and video games.

A role-playing video game is a video game genre where the player controls the actions of a character immersed in some well-defined world. Many role-playing video games have origins in tabletop role-playing games and use much of the same terminology, settings and game mechanics. Other major similarities with pen-and-paper games include developed story-telling and narrative elements, player character development, complexity, as well as replayability and immersion. The electronic medium removes the necessity for a gamemaster and increases combat resolution speed. RPGs have evolved from simple text-based console-window games into visually rich 3D experiences.

Square Co., Ltd. was a Japanese video game company founded in September 1986 by Masafumi Miyamoto. It merged with Enix in 2003 to form Square Enix. The company also used SquareSoft as a brand name to refer to their games, and the term is occasionally used to refer to the company itself. In addition, "Square Soft, Inc" was the name of the company's American arm before the merger, after which it was renamed to "Square Enix, Inc".


Final Fantasy was originally conceived under the working title Fighting Fantasy, but trademark issues and dire circumstances surrounding Square as well as Sakaguchi himself prompted the name to be changed. The game was a great commercial success, received generally positive reviews, and spawned many successful sequels and supplementary titles in the form of the Final Fantasy series. The original is now regarded as one of the most influential and successful role-playing games on the Nintendo Entertainment System, playing a major role in popularizing the genre. Critical praise focused on the game's graphics, while criticism targeted the time spent wandering in search of random battle encounters to raise the player's experience level. By March 2003, all versions of the Final Fantasy had sold a combined total of two million copies worldwide.

Final Fantasy is a Japanese science fantasy media franchise created by Hironobu Sakaguchi, and developed and owned by Square Enix. The franchise centers on a series of fantasy and science fantasy role-playing video games (RPGs/JRPGs). The first game in the series was released in 1987, with 14 other main-numbered entries being released since then. The franchise has since branched into other video game genres such as tactical role-playing, action role-playing, massively multiplayer online role-playing, racing, third-person shooter, fighting, and rhythm, as well as branching into other media, including CGI films, anime, manga, and novels.

A random encounter is a feature commonly used in various role-playing games whereby combat encounters with non-player character (NPC) enemies or other dangers occur sporadically and at random, usually without the enemy being physically detected beforehand. In general, random encounters are used to simulate the challenges associated with being in a hazardous environment—such as a monster-infested wilderness or dungeon—with uncertain frequency of occurrence and makeup. Frequent random encounters are common in Japanese role-playing games like Dragon Quest,, Pokémon, and the Final Fantasy series.


Final Fantasy has four basic game modes: an overworld map, town and dungeon maps, a battle screen, and a menu screen. The overworld map is a scaled-down version of the game's fictional world, which the player uses to direct characters to various locations. The primary means of travel across the overworld is by foot; a ship, a canoe, and an airship become available as the player progresses. With the exception of some battles in preset locations or with bosses, enemies are randomly encountered on field maps and on the overworld map when traveling by foot, canoe, or ship, and must either be fought or fled from. [4]

An overworld is, in a broad sense, an area within a video game that interconnects all its levels or locations. They are mostly common in role-playing games, though this does not exclude other video game genres.

Boss (video gaming) significant and especially strong enemy in video games

In video games, a boss is a significant computer-controlled enemy. A fight with a boss character is commonly referred to as a boss battle or boss fight. Boss battles are generally seen at a climax of a particular section of the game, usually at the end of a level or stage, or guarding a specific objective; the boss enemy is generally far stronger than the opponents the player has faced up to that point, and is usually faced solo. A miniboss is a boss weaker or less significant than the main boss in the same area or level.. A superboss is generally much more powerful than the bosses encountered as part of the main game's plot and often optional to encounter. A final boss is often the main antagonist of a game's story and the defeat of that character provides ultimate satisfaction to the game player.

The game's plot develops as the player progresses through towns and dungeons. Some town citizens offer helpful information, while others own shops that sell items or equipment. Dungeons appear in areas that include forests, caves, mountains, swamps, underwater caverns, and buildings. Dungeons often have treasure chests containing rare items that are not available in most stores. The game's menu screen allows the player to keep track of their experience points and levels, to choose which equipment their characters wield, and to use items and magic. A character's most basic attribute is their level, which can range from one to fifty, and is determined by the character's amount of experience. Gaining a level increases the character's attributes, such as their maximum hit points (HP), which represents a character's remaining health; a character dies when they reach zero HP. Characters gain experience points by winning battles. [4]

An experience point is a unit of measurement used in tabletop role-playing games (RPGs) and role-playing video games to quantify a player character's progression through the game. Experience points are generally awarded for the completion of missions, overcoming obstacles and opponents, and for successful role-playing.

Health (gaming) gaming-related attribute

Health or vitality is an attribute assigned to entities such as characters or objects within role-playing games and video games, that indicates their continued ability to function. Health is usually measured in hit points or health points, shortened to HP which lowers by set amounts when the entity is attacked or injured. When the HP of a player character or non-player character reaches zero, that character is incapacitated and barred from taking further action. In some games, such as those with cooperative multiplayer and party based role playing games, it may be possible for an ally to revive a character who has reached 0 hit points and let them return to action. In single player games, running out of health usually equates to "dying" and losing a life or receiving a Game Over.

The Light Warriors battle Lich, Fiend of Earth. Final Fantasy I Lich Battle.png
The Light Warriors battle Lich, Fiend of Earth.

Combat in Final Fantasy is menu-based: the player selects an action from a list of options such as Attack, Magic, and Item. Battles are turn-based and continue until either side flees or is defeated. If the player's party wins, each character will gain experience and Gil; if it flees, it will be returned to the map screen; and if every character in the party dies, the game will be over and all unsaved progress will be lost. [4] Final Fantasy was the first game to show the player's characters on the right side of the screen and the enemies on the left side of the screen, as opposed to a first-person view. [5]

The player begins the game by choosing four characters to form a party and is locked into that choice for the duration of the game. [6] Each character has an "occupation", or character class, with different attributes and abilities that are either innate or can be acquired. [6] There are six classes: Fighter, Thief, Black Belt, Red Mage, White Mage, and Black Mage. [6] Later in the game, the player has the option to have each character undergo a "class upgrade"; whereby their sprite portraits mature, and some classes gain the ability to use weapons and magic that they previously could not use. [4] The game contains a variety of weapons, armor, and items that can be bought or found to make the characters more powerful in combat. Each character has eight inventory slots, with four to hold weapons and four to hold armor. Each character class has restrictions on what weapons and armor it may use. Some weapons and armor are magical; if used during combat, they will cast spells. Other magical artifacts provide protection, such as from certain spells. At shops, the characters can buy items to help themselves recover while they are traveling. Items available include potions, which heal the characters or remove ailments like poison or petrification; Tents and Cabins, which can be used on the world map to heal the player and optionally save the game; and Houses, which also recovers the party's magic after saving. Special items may be gained by doing quests. [4]

In role-playing games (RPG), a character class is a job or profession commonly used to differentiate the abilities of different game characters. A character class aggregates several abilities and aptitudes, and may also detail aspects of background and social standing, or impose behavior restrictions. Classes may be considered to represent archetypes, or specific careers. RPG systems that employ character classes often subdivide them into levels of accomplishment, to be attained by players during the course of the game. It is common for a character to remain in the same class for its lifetime; although some games allow characters to change class, or attain multiple classes. Some systems eschew the use of classes and levels entirely; others hybridise them with skill-based systems or emulate them with character templates.

Sprite is a computer graphics term for a two-dimensional bitmap that is integrated into a larger scene, most often in a 2D video game.

Magic is a common ability in the game, and several character classes use it. Spells are divided into two groups: White, which is defensive and healing, and Black, which is debilitating and destructive. Magic can be bought from White and Black magic shops and assigned to characters whose occupation allows them to use it. Spells are classified by a level between one and eight, with four White and four Black spells per level. Each character may learn only three spells per level. White and Black Mages can potentially learn any of their respective spells, while Red Mages, the Ninja, and the Knight cannot use most high-level magic. [4]



Final Fantasy takes place in a fantasy world with three large continents. The elemental powers of this world are determined by the state of four crystals, each governing one of the four classical elements: earth, fire, water, and wind. The world of Final Fantasy is inhabited by numerous races, including humans, elves, dwarves, mermaids, dragons, and robots. Most non-human races have only one "town" in the game, although individuals are sometimes found in human towns or other areas as well. Four hundred years prior to the start of the game, the Lefeinish people, who used the Power of Wind to craft airships and a giant space station (called the Floating Castle in the game), watched their country decline as the Wind crystal went dark. Two hundred years later, violent storms sank a massive shrine that served as the center of an ocean-based civilization, and the Water crystal went dark. The Earth crystal and the Fire crystal followed, plaguing the earth with raging wildfires, and devastating the agricultural town of Melmond as the plains and vegetation decayed. Some time later, the sage Lukahn tells of a prophecy that four Light Warriors will come to save the world in a time of darkness.


The game begins with the appearance of the four youthful Light Warriors, the heroes of the story, who each carry one of the darkened Orbs. Initially, the Light Warriors have access to the Kingdom of Coneria and the ruined Temple of Fiends. After the Warriors rescue Princess Sara from the evil knight Garland, the King of Coneria builds a bridge that enables the Light Warriors' passage east to the town of Pravoka. There the Light Warriors liberate the town from Bikke and his band of pirates and acquire the pirates' ship for their own use. The Warriors now embark on a chain of delivery quests on the shores of the Aldi Sea. First, they retrieve a stolen crown from the Marsh Cave for a king in a ruined castle, who turns out to be the dark elf Astos. Defeating him gains them the Crystal Eye, which they return to the blind witch Matoya in exchange for a herb needed to awaken the elf prince cursed by Astos. The elf prince gives the Light Warriors the Mystic Key, which is capable of unlocking any door. The key unlocks a storage room in Coneria Castle which holds TNT. Nerrick, one of the dwarves of the Cave of Dwarf/Dwarf Village, destroys a small isthmus using the TNT, connecting the Aldi Sea to the outside world. [5]

After visiting the near-ruined town of Melmond, the Light Warriors go to the Earth Cave to defeat a vampire and retrieve the Star Ruby, which gains passage to Sage Sadda's cave. With Sadda's Rod, the Warriors venture deeper into the Earth Cave and destroy the Earth Fiend, Lich. The Light Warriors then obtain a canoe and enter Gurgu Volcano and defeat the Fire Fiend, Kary. The Levistone from the nearby Ice Cave allows them to raise an airship to reach the northern continents. After they prove their courage by retrieving the Rat's Tail from the Castle of Ordeal, the King of the Dragons, Bahamut, promotes each Light Warrior. A kind gesture is repaid by a fairy, receiving special liquid that produces oxygen, and the Warriors use it to help defeat the Water Fiend, Kraken, in the Sunken Shrine. They also recover a Slab, which allows a linguist named Dr. Unne to teach them the Lefeinish language. The Lefeinish give the Light Warriors access to the Floating Castle that Tiamat, the Wind Fiend, has taken over. [5] With the Four Fiends defeated and the Orbs restored, a portal opens in the Temple of Fiends which takes them 2000 years into the past. There the Warriors discover that the Four Fiends sent Garland (now the archdemon Chaos) back in time and he sent the Fiends to the future to do so, creating a time loop by which he could live forever. [7] The Light Warriors defeat Chaos, thus ending the paradox, and return home. By ending the paradox, however, the Light Warriors have changed the future to one where their heroic deeds remain unknown outside of legend. [5]


Hironobu Sakaguchi thought that Final Fantasy would be his final game. Hironobu Sakaguchi 20070706 Japan Expo 1.jpg
Hironobu Sakaguchi thought that Final Fantasy would be his final game.


Hironobu Sakaguchi had intended to make a role-playing game (RPG) for a long time, but his employer Square refused to give him permission as it expected low sales of such a product. [8] However, when the RPG Dragon Quest was released and proved to be a hit in Japan, the company reconsidered its stance on the genre and approved Sakaguchi's vision of an RPG inspired by Ultima and Wizardry . [8] Only three of his colleagues volunteered to join this project headed by him because he was thought of as a "rough boss" in spite of his unsuccessful creations. [9] Eventually, Final Fantasy was developed by a team of seven core staff members within Square referred to as the "A-Team". [10] [11] Sakaguchi convinced fellow game designers Koichi Ishii and Akitoshi Kawazu to join the project. Kawazu was mainly responsible for the battle system and sequences, which he based heavily on the tabletop game Dungeons & Dragons and the RPG Wizardry. For example, enemies' weaknesses to elements such as fire and ice had not been included in Japanese RPGs up until that point. Kawazu had grown fond of such aspects of Western RPGs and decided to incorporate them into Final Fantasy. He also advocated the player's option to freely choose their own party member classes at the beginning of the game as he feels "the fun in an RPG begins when you create a character". [8]

The scenario was written by freelance writer Kenji Terada, based on a story by Sakaguchi. [1] [11] Ishii heavily influenced the game's setting with his idea of the crystals. [9] He also suggested illustrator Yoshitaka Amano as character designer, but Sakaguchi declined at first as he had never heard the artist's name before. When Sakaguchi showed Ishii some drawings on magazine clippings and told him that this was the art style he was looking for, Ishii revealed to him that these were actually created by Amano, hence leading to his involvement in the game. [9] The music for Final Fantasy was composed by Nobuo Uematsu and marked his 16th video game music composition. [5] Iranian-American programmer Nasir Gebelli was hired to code the game. He initially tried to understand all aspects of the gameplay but was soon advised by Sakaguchi to just program the design concepts so he did not have to explain everything to Gebelli in detail. [9] Gebelli was also responsible for creating what is considered to be the first RPG minigame, a sliding puzzle, which he added into the game despite it not being part of the original game design. [12] Among the other developers were graphic designer Kazuko Shibuya, programmers Kiyoshi Yoshii and Ken Narita, as well as debugger Hiroyuki Ito. [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] When the project started to show promise, designer Hiromichi Tanaka and his "B-Team" joined to aid development. [9] [10] The lack of faith in Sakaguchi's team, as well as its unpopularity within the company, motivated the staff members to give their best. [10]


Sakaguchi took an in-development ROM of the game to Japanese magazine Famicom Tsushin , but it would not review it. However, Famitsu gave the game extensive coverage. Initially, only 200,000 copies were to be shipped, but Sakaguchi pleaded with the company to make 400,000 to help spawn a sequel, and the management agreed, [10] then the original NES version successfully shipped 520,000 copies in Japan. [18] Following the successful North American localization of Dragon Quest , Nintendo of America translated Final Fantasy into English and published it in North America in 1990. The North American version of Final Fantasy met with modest success, partly due to Nintendo's then-aggressive marketing tactics. No version of the game was marketed in the PAL region until Final Fantasy Origins in 2003. [19]


Over the years, several theories emerged as to why the game was called Final Fantasy. [20] In 2015, Sakaguchi stated that, from the beginning, the team had wished for a name that could be shortened to FF(エフエフ,efu efu); that way, the game's title could be abbreviated in the Latin script and pronounced in four syllables in the Japanese language. [21] [22] The original working title for Sakaguchi's RPG concept was Fighting Fantasy, but it was changed to avoid issues with a tabletop game of the same name that had already been released. [9] [21] The reason for choosing the word "final" to form the eventual title of Final Fantasy was explained as twofold by Uematsu: for one thing, it stemmed from Sakaguchi's personal situation, as he would have quit the game industry and gone back to university had the game not sold well, [10] [20] and for another, Square was under the threat of bankruptcy at the time, which meant the game could have been the company's last. [10] [20] Although Sakaguchi confirmed some of the theories, he later downplayed the rationale for choosing the word "final", saying that "it was definitely a back-to-the-wall type situation back then, but any word that starts with an 'F' would have been fine". [21] [22]

Versions and re-releases

Final Fantasy has been remade several times for different platforms and has frequently been packaged with Final Fantasy II in various collections. [5] While all of these remakes retain the same basic story and battle mechanics, various changes have been made in different areas, including graphics, sound, and specific game elements.

Chronology of Final Fantasy versions and remakes
Final Fantasy1987
Family Computer / Nintendo Entertainment System Square Square
Nintendo (NES)
The original version.
Technical limitations and the censorship policies of Nintendo of America resulted in a few minor changes to certain elements of the American version. [23] [24] [25]
Final Fantasy1989Japan MSX2 Square Microcabin Minor graphical upgrades, expanded music and sound effects, and fewer loading times.
Final Fantasy I・II1994Japan Family Computer Square Square A few graphical updates.
Final Fantasy2000Japan WonderSwan Color Square Square Background images in battle scenes, re-drawn sprites, and parity with later games.
Final Fantasy Origins2002
PlayStation Tose Square All-new, more detailed graphics, remixed soundtrack, FMV sequences, art galleries, and memo save function.
Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls2004Japan
Game Boy Advance Tose Nintendo Four additional dungeons, updated bestiary, and a few minor changes.
Final Fantasy2004
Mobile phone Square Enix
Bandai Namco Games
Final Fantasy2007
PlayStation Portable Tose Square Enix Higher-resolution 2D graphics, FMV sequences, remixed soundtrack,
bonus dungeons, and script from Dawn of Souls.
Final Fantasy2009
Wii Virtual Console Square Enix Virtual Console release of the original FC / NES version.
Final Fantasy2009
PlayStation Store PSOne Classics Square Release of the PlayStation version as a PSOne Classic.
Final Fantasy2010worldwide iOS Square Enix Square Enix Based on the PSP version.
Final Fantasy2011Japan
PlayStation Store downloadable PSP games Square Enix PlayStation Portable version released as downloadable PSP game.
Final Fantasy2012worldwide Windows Phone Square Enix Based on the iOS version.
Final Fantasy2012worldwide Android Square Enix Square Enix Based on the iOS version, but without the bonus dungeons, bestiary, and music player.
Final Fantasy2013Japan Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console Square Square Enix Virtual Console release of the original FC version.
Final Fantasy2013Japan Wii U Virtual Console Square Square Enix Virtual Console release of the original FC version.
Final Fantasy2015Japan Nintendo eShop Square Enix Square Enix Based on the PSP version with updated 3D stereoscopic graphics. [26]
Final Fantasy I & II Advance2016Japan Wii U Virtual Console Square Square Enix Virtual Console release of the GBA version.
Final Fantasy2016USA
NES Classic Edition Square Square Enix
The original version emulated as an in-built title for the system.

Final Fantasy was first re-released for the MSX2 system and was published by Microcabin in Japan in June 1989. [27] It had access to almost three times as much storage space as the Famicom version but suffered from problems not present in Nintendo's cartridge media, including noticeable loading times. There were also minor graphical upgrades, much-improved music tracks, and sound effects.

In 1994, Final Fantasy I・II, a compilation of Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II, was launched for the Famicom. [28] This version was only released in Japan and had very few graphical updates.

The WonderSwan Color remake was released in Japan on December 9, 2000, [27] and featured many new graphical changes. The 8-bit graphics of the original Famicom game were updated, battle scenes incorporated full background images, and character and enemy sprites were redrawn to look more like the ones from the Super Famicom Final Fantasy games. [29]

In Japan, Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II were re-released both separately and as a combined game for the PlayStation. The collection was released in Japan in 2002 as Final Fantasy I & II Premium Package and in Europe and North America in 2003 as Final Fantasy Origins. This version was similar to the WonderSwan Color remake [30] and featured several changes such as more detailed graphics, a remixed soundtrack, added full motion video sequences, art galleries of Yoshitaka Amano's illustrations, and a memo save function. [31] On December 18, 2012, the port was re-released as part of the Final Fantasy 25th Anniversary Ultimate Box release. [32]

Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls is, like Final Fantasy Origins, a port of the first two games in the series and was released for the Game Boy Advance in 2004. The Dawn of Souls version incorporates various new elements, including four additional dungeons, an updated bestiary, and a few minor changes. [33]

Square Enix released a version of Final Fantasy for two Japanese mobile phone networks in 2004; a version for NTT DoCoMo FOMA 900i series was launched in March under the title Final Fantasy i [34] and a subsequent release for CDMA 1X WIN-compatible phones was launched in August. [35] Another titular version was released for SoftBank Yahoo! Keitai phones on July 3, 2006. [36] The games have more refined graphics compared to the original 8-bit game, but not as advanced as many of the later console and handheld ports.

Square Enix planned to release this version for North American mobile phones in 2006, [37] but it was delayed to 2010 and released in collaboration with Namco. It retains the game difficulty and MP System from the original Famicom version. Other elements such as updated graphics, spell names, monster names, bosses, items, and areas are borrowed from the Game Boy Advance / Wonderswan Color versions, not including the additional areas and monsters present in the GBA version. Game data is saved as in the original Famicom version (by using Tent, Sleeping Bag, and Cottage or by going into an inn). However, there are now three save game slots and a "Temporary Save" option available in the game. [38]

For the 20th anniversary of Final Fantasy, Square Enix remade Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II for the PlayStation Portable. [39] The games were released in Japan and North America in 2007, [40] and in European territories in 2008. [41] The PSP version features higher-resolution 2D graphics, full motion video sequences, a remixed soundtrack, and a new dungeon as well as the bonus dungeons from Dawn of Souls. The script is the same as in the Dawn of Souls version, aside from the new dungeon. [42]

Square Enix released the original NES version of the game on the Wii's Virtual Console service in Japan on May 26, 2009, [43] in North America on October 5, 2009 [44] and in the PAL region as an import on May 7, 2010. [45]

On February 25, 2010, Square Enix released the iOS version of Final Fantasy, based on the PSP port with touch controls, worldwide. [46] On June 13, 2012, Square Enix released the Windows Phone version, which is based on the iOS version. [47] [48] On July 27, 2012, Square Enix released an Android port, largely based on the iOS version though lacking the new dungeons of the 20th-anniversary edition. [49]

On November 11, 2016, the game (alongside 29 other games) was included in the NES Classic Edition / Nintendo Classic Mini: Nintendo Entertainment System released by Nintendo. [50]


Final Fantasy
Aggregate scores
GameRankings NES: 79% [51]
PS: 81% [52]
GBA: 80% [53]
PSP: 68% [54]
iOS: 77% [55]
Metacritic PS: 79/100 [56]
GBA: 79/100 [57]
PSP: 67/100 [58]
iOS: 74/100 [59]
Review scores
AllGame NES: Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar half.svgStar empty.svg [60]
Mobile: Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar half.svgStar empty.svg [61]
Famitsu NES: 34/40 [62]
WonderSwan: 30/40 [63]
GameSpot PSP: 6.5/10 [64]
IGN WonderSwan: 8.6/10 [29]
PSP: 6.9/10 [65]
iOS: 7 / 10 [66]
GamePlay RPG WonderSwan: 96% [67]
TouchArcade iOS: Star full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar full.svgStar empty.svg [68]

Final Fantasy has been well received by critics and commercially successful; the original NES version shipped 520,000 copies in Japan. [18] According to Square's publicity department, the Japanese Famicom and MSX releases sold a combined 600,000 copies, and the North American NES release sold 700,000 copies. [69] As of March 31, 2003, the game, including all re-releases and remakes at the time, had shipped 1.99 million copies worldwide, with 1.21 million of those copies being shipped in Japan and 780,000 abroad. [70] As of November 19, 2007, another PlayStation Portable version has shipped 140,000 copies. [71]

Editors at IGN ranked Final Fantasy the 11th best game on the NES, calling the game's class system diverse, and praising its convenient use of vehicles as a means of traveling across the world map. [72] GamesRadar ranked it the eighth best NES game ever made. The staff felt that while Dragon Warrior introduced gamers to the genre, Final Fantasy popularized it. [73] In 2004, readers of Retro Gamer voted Final Fantasy 93rd top retro game, with the staff noting that "despite poor visuals and a relatively simple quest, many still consider the original to be the best (with the exception of FFVII)." [74] In 2006, Final Fantasy appeared in the Japanese magazine Famitsu 's Top 100 games list, where readers voted it the 63rd best game of all time. [75] GameFAQs users made a similar list in 2005, which ranked Final Fantasy at 76th. [76] It was rated the 49th best game made on a Nintendo system in Nintendo Power 's Top 200 Games list. [77] In 2008, Nintendo Power ranked it the 19th best Nintendo Entertainment System video game, praising it for setting up the basics of console role-playing games, along with Dragon Warrior , and citing examples such as epic stories, leveling up, random battles, and character classes. [78]

Final Fantasy was one of the most influential early console role-playing games and played a major role in legitimizing and popularizing the genre. [79] According to IGN's Matt Casamassina, Final Fantasy's storyline had a deeper and more engaging story than the original Dragon Quest (known as Dragon Warrior in North America). [80] Modern critics have pointed out that the game is poorly paced by contemporary standards, and involves much more time wandering in search of random battle encounters to raise their experience levels and money than it does exploring and solving puzzles. Other reviewers find the level-building and exploration portions of the game as the most amusing ones. [31] In 1987, Famitsu initially described the original Final Fantasy as "one of many" that imitated the Dragon Quest formula. [81] The game is considered by some to be the weakest and most difficult installment of the series. [29]

The subsequent versions of Final Fantasy have garnered mostly favorable reviews from the media. Peer Schneider of IGN enjoyed the WonderSwan Color version, praising its graphical improvements, especially the environments, characters, and monsters. [29] Famitsu scored this version a 30 out of 40. [63] Final Fantasy Origins was generally well-received; GamePro said the music was "fantastic", and that the graphics had a "suitably retro cuteness to them." [82] Reviews for Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls were generally positive, with Jeremy Dunham of IGN giving particular praise to the improved English translation, saying it was better than any previous version of the game. [83] The PlayStation Portable version was not as critically successful as the previous releases; GameSpot's Kevin VanOrd cited the visuals as its strongest enhancement but stated that the additional random enemy encounters and updated graphics did not add much value. [84] The Dawn of Souls package was rated 76th in Nintendo Power's Top 200 Games list. [77]


A soundtrack album was released together with the score of Final Fantasy II in 1989. [85] Some of the game's tracks became mainstays to the Final Fantasy series: the "Prelude", the arpeggio played on the title screen; the "Opening Theme", which is played when the party crosses the bridge early in the game and later referred to as the Final Fantasy theme; and the "Victory Fanfare", which is played after every victorious battle. The opening motif of the battle theme has also been reused a number of times in the series. [5] The theme song that plays when the player characters first cross the bridge from Coneria has become the recurring theme music of the series and has been featured in most numbered Final Fantasy titles. Final Fantasy was also the basis for the series finale of a video game-themed cartoon series Captain N: The Game Master entitled "The Fractured Fantasy of Captain N". [86] 8-Bit Theater , a sprite-based webcomic created by Brian Clevinger, parodies the game, and has become very popular in the gaming community since it started in March 2001. [87]

Elements from the video game have also appeared in a series of fighting games: Dissidia Final Fantasy , Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy and Dissidia Final Fantasy NT . Warrior of Light, based on Yoshitaka Amano's design of the lead character, and Garland are the respective hero and villain representing Final Fantasy. Warrior of Light is voiced by Toshihiko Seki in the Japanese version and Grant George in the English version, while Garland is voiced by Kenji Utsumi (Dissidia Final Fantasy and 012 Dissidia Final Fantasy) and Kōji Ishii (Dissidia Final Fantasy NT) in the Japanese versions and Christopher Sabat in the English versions. [88] All the games add background information to the world of Final Fantasy. For instance, Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy names the world of Final Fantasy "World A" in order to distinguish it from World B, the world of Dissidia. [89] Characters and music from Final Fantasy have also appeared in the Theatrhythm Final Fantasy series.

See also


  1. Final Fantasy(ファイナルファンタジーFainaru Fantajī)

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<i>Chrono Trigger</i> Role-playing video game

Chrono Trigger is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System in 1995 that began the Chrono series. Chrono Trigger's development team included three designers that Square dubbed the "Dream Team": Hironobu Sakaguchi, the creator of Square's successful Final Fantasy series; Yuji Horii, a freelance designer and creator of Enix's popular Dragon Quest series; and Akira Toriyama, a manga artist famed for his work with Dragon Quest and Dragon Ball. In addition, Kazuhiko Aoki produced the game, Masato Kato wrote most of the story, while composer Yasunori Mitsuda wrote most of the soundtrack before falling ill and deferring the remaining tracks to Final Fantasy series-composer Nobuo Uematsu. The game's story follows a group of adventurers who travel through time to prevent a global catastrophe.

<i>Final Fantasy II</i> 1988 video game

Final Fantasy II is a fantasy role-playing video game developed and published by Square in 1988 for the Family Computer as the second installment of the Final Fantasy series. The game has received numerous enhanced remakes for the WonderSwan Color, the PlayStation, the Game Boy Advance, the PlayStation Portable, and multiple mobile and smartphone types. As neither this game nor Final Fantasy III were initially released outside Japan, Final Fantasy IV was originally released in North America as Final Fantasy II, so as not to confuse players. The most recent releases of the game are enhanced versions for iOS and Android, which were released worldwide in 2010 and 2012, respectively.

<i>Final Fantasy IV</i> video game

Final Fantasy IV, known as Final Fantasy II for its initial North American release, is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Released in 1991, it is the fourth main installment of the Final Fantasy series. The game's story follows Cecil, a dark knight, as he tries to prevent the sorcerer Golbez from seizing powerful crystals and destroying the world. He is joined on this quest by a frequently changing group of allies. Final Fantasy IV introduced innovations that became staples of the Final Fantasy series and role-playing games in general. Its "Active Time Battle" system was used in five subsequent Final Fantasy games, and unlike prior games in the series, IV gave each character their own unchangeable character class.

<i>Final Fantasy VI</i> 1994 video game

Final Fantasy VI, also known as Final Fantasy III from its marketing for initial North American release in 1994, is a role-playing video game developed and published by Japanese company Square for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Final Fantasy VI, being the sixth game in the series proper, was the first to be directed by someone other than producer and series creator Hironobu Sakaguchi; the role was filled instead by Yoshinori Kitase and Hiroyuki Ito. Yoshitaka Amano, long-time collaborator to the Final Fantasy series, returned as the character designer and contributed widely to visual concept design, while series-regular, composer Nobuo Uematsu, wrote the game's score, which has been released on several soundtrack albums. Set in a fantasy world with a technology level equivalent to that of the Second Industrial Revolution, the game's story follows an expanding cast that includes fourteen permanent playable characters. The drama includes and extends past depicting a rebellion against an evil military dictatorship, pursuit of a magical arms-race, use of chemical weapons in warfare, depiction of violent, apocalyptic confrontations with Divinities, several personal redemption arcs, teenage pregnancy, and the continuous renewal of hope and life itself.

<i>Final Fantasy V</i> video game

Final Fantasy V is a medieval-fantasy role-playing video game developed and published by Square in 1992 as a part of the Final Fantasy series. The game first appeared only in Japan on Nintendo's Super Famicom. It has been ported with minor differences to Sony's PlayStation and Nintendo's Game Boy Advance. An original video animation produced in 1994 called Final Fantasy: Legend of the Crystals serves as a sequel to the events depicted in the game. It was released for the PlayStation Network on April 6, 2011, in Japan. An enhanced port of the game, with new high-resolution graphics and a touch-based interface, was released for iPhone and iPad on March 28, 2013, and for Android on September 25, 2013.

<i>Final Fantasy III</i> video game

Final Fantasy III is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square for the Family Computer. The third installment in the Final Fantasy series, it was released in 1990. It is the first numbered Final Fantasy game to feature the job-change system. The story revolves around four orphaned youths drawn to a crystal of light. The crystal grants them some of its power, and instructs them to go forth and restore balance to the world. Not knowing what to make of the crystal's pronouncements, but nonetheless recognizing the importance of its words, the four inform their adoptive families of their mission and set out to explore and bring back balance to the world.

Dragon Quest, published as Dragon Warrior in North America until 2005, is a series of Japanese role-playing video games created by Yuji Horii and his studio Armor Project. The games are published by Square Enix, with localized versions of later installments for the Nintendo DS and 3DS being published by Nintendo outside of Japan. With its first game published in 1986, there are eleven main-series games, along with numerous spin-off games. In addition, there have been numerous manga, anime and novels published under the franchise, with nearly every game in the main series having a related adaptation.

<i>Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles</i> 2003 video game

Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles is an action role-playing game developed by The Game Designers Studio and published for the GameCube by Nintendo in 2003 in Japan; and 2004 in North America, Europe and Australia. A remastered version for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Android, and iOS will be released in 2019. A spin-off of the Final Fantasy series, Crystal Chronicles was the first title released for a Nintendo console since Final Fantasy VI in 1994.

<i>Dragon Quest IV</i> role-playing video game

Dragon Quest IV: Chapters of the Chosen, titled Dragon Warrior IV when initially localized to North America, is a role-playing video game, the fourth installment of the Dragon Quest video game series developed by Chunsoft and published by Enix, and the first of the Zenithian Trilogy. It was originally released for the Famicom on 11 February 1990 in Japan. A North American NES version followed in October 1992, and would be the last Dragon Quest game localized and published by Enix's Enix America Corporation subsidiary prior to its closure in November 1995, as well as the last Dragon Quest game to be localized into English prior to the localization of Dragon Warrior Monsters in December 1999. The game was remade by Heartbeat for the PlayStation, which eventually was available as an Ultimate Hits title. This was followed with a second remake developed by ArtePiazza for the Nintendo DS, released in Japan on 22 November 2007. This remake was released in Australia on 11 September 2008, in Europe on 12 September 2008 and in North America on September 16, 2008. A version based on the Nintendo DS remake for Android and iOS was released in 2014.

<i>Dragon Quest</i> (video game) role-playing video game

Dragon Quest, titled Dragon Warrior when initially localized to North America, is the first role-playing video game (RPG) in the Dragon Quest media franchise. It was developed by Chunsoft for the Family Computer and published by Enix in Japan in 1986 as Dragon Quest and by Nintendo in 1989 in North America for the Nintendo Entertainment System. Dragon Quest has been ported and remade for several video game platforms, including the MSX, PC-9801, Super Famicom, Game Boy Color, Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation 4 and mobile phones. In play, players control a hero character who is charged with saving the Kingdom of Alefgard and rescuing its princess from the evil Dragonlord. Dragon Warrior's story became the second part in a trilogy. Several more anime and manga series, which revolved around this overarching plot were created.

<i>Dragon Quest III</i> role-playing video game

Dragon Quest III: The Seeds of Salvation, titled Dragon Warrior III when initially localized to North America, is a role-playing video game developed by Chunsoft and published by Enix. It is the third installment in the Dragon Quest series and was first released for the Family Computer (Famicom) in Japan and later for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) in North America. The game saw an enhanced remake for the Super Famicom in 1996 and the Game Boy Color in 2001, and a port to mobile phones and the Wii in 2009 and 2011. A version of the game for Android and iOS was released in Japan on September 25, 2014, and worldwide as Dragon Quest III: The Seeds of Salvation on December 4, 2014. It was the first time the game was given an official English subtitle.

<i>Kings Knight</i> video game by Workss & Square

King's Knight is a 1986 scrolling shooter video game developed by Workss and published by Square for the Nintendo Entertainment System and MSX. The game was released in Japan on September 18, 1986, and in North America in 1989. It was later re-released for the Wii's Virtual Console in Japan on November 27, 2007 and in North America on March 24, 2008. This would be followed by a release on the Virtual Console in Japan on February 4, 2015 for 3DS and July 6, 2016 for Wii U.

The Chrono series is a video game franchise developed and published by Square, and is currently owned by Square Enix. The series began in 1995 with the time travel role-playing video game Chrono Trigger, which spawned two continuations, Radical Dreamers: Nusumenai Hōseki, and Chrono Cross. A promotional anime called Dimensional Adventure Numa Monjar and two ports of Chrono Trigger were also produced. As of March 31, 2003, Chrono Trigger was Square Enix's 12th best-selling game, with 2.65 million units shipped. Chrono Cross was the 24th, with 1.5 million units. By March 2012, the two games sold over 5.4 million units combined. The games in the series have been called some of the greatest of all time, with most of the praise going towards Chrono Trigger. The series' original soundtracks, composed by Yasunori Mitsuda, have also been praised, with multiple soundtracks being released for them.

Nasir Gebelli is an Iranian-American programmer and video game designer usually credited in his games as simply Nasir. Gebelli co-founded Sirius Software, created his own company Gebelli Software, and worked for Squaresoft. He became known in the early 1980s for producing the first fast action games for the Apple II computer, including 3D shooters, launching the Apple II as a gaming machine. This established him as one of the pioneers of computer gaming, and one of the greatest Apple II game designers. From the late 1980s to the early 1990s, he became known for his home console work at Squaresoft, where he was part of Square's A-Team, programming the first three Final Fantasy games, the Famicom 3D System titles 3-D WorldRunner and Rad Racer, and Secret of Mana.

<i>Dissidia Final Fantasy</i> video game

Dissidia Final Fantasy is a fighting game with action RPG elements developed and published by Square Enix for the PlayStation Portable as part of the campaign for the Final Fantasy series' 20th anniversary. It was released in Japan on December 18, 2008, in North America on August 25, 2009, in Australia on September 3, 2009 and in Europe on September 4, 2009. It was then re-released as an international version in Japan, based on the North American port, as Dissidia Final Fantasy: Universal Tuning, on November 1, 2009.

<i>Final Fantasy IV</i> (2007 video game) 3D remake of the Final Fantasy IV video game

Final Fantasy IV is a Nintendo DS role-playing video game and an enhanced remake of the 1991 SNES game, Final Fantasy IV, also known as Final Fantasy II in America for the SNES. It was released as part of the Final Fantasy series 20th anniversary celebrations on December 20, 2007 in Japan, on July 22, 2008 in North America, and on September 5, 2008 in Europe.

<i>Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobos Dungeon</i> video game

Final Fantasy Fables: Chocobo's Dungeon is a role-playing video game published by Square Enix for the Wii. It is an installment in the Chocobo series that focuses on Chocobo and his quest to free a town lost in time from eternal forgetfulness.

Tetsuya Nomura is a Japanese video game artist, designer and director working for Square Enix. He designed characters for the Final Fantasy series, debuting with Final Fantasy VI and continuing with various later installments. Additionally, Nomura has led the development of the Kingdom Hearts series since its debut in 2002 and was the director for the CGI film Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children.

Hironobu Sakaguchi game designer

Hironobu Sakaguchi is a Japanese video game designer, director, producer, writer, and film director. He is best known as creator of the Final Fantasy series, which he conceived the original concept for the first title Final Fantasy and also directed several later entries in the franchise, and has had a long career in gaming with over 100 million units of video games sold worldwide. He left Square Enix and founded the studio Mistwalker in 2004.


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