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We cannot talk about the good without delving into the bad…and sadly there’s always that one bad apple that can spoil the whole bunch. So, what is Final Fantasy: A New Empire exactly? Well to put it up shortly it’s a mobile game, but not any mobile game, it’s something that you might never have tried or even heard of before.
In a never done before way, you can now on your phone dabble in the universe of Final Fantasy XV by building your very own empire, stack up your own army and fight along side friends to defeat the enemy outside your borders. With the help of Prince Noctis, his (now your) friends (or just your basic Sid Meier’s: Civilization advisors) Ignis, Gladiolus, Prompto and Lunafreya, even you can listen to their advice as you build important building that can grant you the powers needed to build the army that will defeat Niflheim at your doorstep.
I just…okay…this game while free is basically nothing new at all and while I have respect for the developer Machine Zone (known for Mobile Strike), as they do know how to make a game that is very profitable. This game however, is something that is sickening to watch being out there. Nothing about it is appealing and even remotely able to capture any of Final Fantasy XV’s personality from the main game, or even just Final Fantasy in general.
There’s little in common between these two games and while that is fine in theory, since they are on vastly different platforms. There’s still nothing about this that caters to RPG fans nor diehard Final Fantasy fans in general. One of the first things that you as the player get met with as you start up the game is Noctis standing in front of you saying a line that even remotely doesn’t remind us of how Noctis acts from the main game.
Plus, the UI (user interface) that is shown are just filled with obtuse icons and things in need to keep track of, plus wouldn’t you know, an ever-present reminder that this game is not only free-to-play but also pay-to-win.
Players are given a time limit before they have to wait to play some more or gods forbid you need to cough up some money, just so you can continue. This might seem normal for a social RPG, but instead of you wanting to spend a little extra money as if using that extra quarter for the arcade machine…it more feels like the bully from school that needs your lunch money or else you’re toast. What I mean by this is that there’s a constant…CONSTANT reminder for all things that buying things with real money helps speed things along, or else you might wait those 78 hours before a simple building, upgrade or unit has been completed. By that time, you can already have been attacked by a multitude of other people that just happened to waltz by with their armies towards bigger fish in the sea.
It is almost impossible not to notice the generic art design, how unattractive and divorced it is from its original game’s crystal filled, charming, noodle cup filled world of joy and wonder. What else is there to cover? Oh, how about that there’s literally no motivation behind the mechanics and gameplay that is poorly explained by the in-game characters. There’s also simply no reason to really take in the universe, as you’re always stuck in one place, looking at the same thing over and over.
Personally, for me the idea of building one’s very own empire in a Final Fantasy world sounds absolutely amazing and I would love to try out a game that really succeeds on such a premise, but this is just agonizing to play and breaks my heart seeing that it lies between 10.000.000 – 50.000.000 downloads.
I still congratulate Mobile Zone for making a game that they know how to run and get a lot of profit from, but it’s just sad to see that there wasn’t more love and care put into this, so people would be interested in the world of Final Fantasy XV, it’s characters being presented and how the full story runs.
Score: 2 out of 10
If you ever get to play this (and I by the nine hope you don’t) then may you enjoy this simple time inducing game that will suck all the money out of your wallet and bank accounts, faster than a trip to the Golden Saucer can do in one night. To the rest I beg of you to just steer clear from this and if interested, then play Mobile Strike, Clash of Clans or any other game in the same genre that does it much better in its execution. This is not recommended at all…really…a bad seed in a field of dreams.