Lightning Returns… But Why?January 2, 2014
I was ready to trade in my PS3 after I obtained a PS4 shortly before Christmas. But, I wanted to make sure there weren’t any upcoming games that would be exclusive to the seventh-generation console that I would want to play. It was then that I saw it – Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII. I felt sick. I mean, didn’t Square Enix hit us with the cash grab also known as Final Fantasy XIII-2? Why do they insist on taking the most polarizing main character in recent Final Fantasy history, Lightning, and force her upon us again? I am just brimming with rhetorical questions.
On February 11th, 2014, Lightning Returns will debut on PS3 and XBOX 360 for those of us in North America. From what I understand, the creators of the game (Square Enix‘s First Production Department) wanted to bring a conclusive end to the story of Lightning and to the XIII universe. What?! Isn’t that what XIII-2 was supposed to do…err…the $14.99 of downloadable content after XIII-2 was supposed to do? Oh I remember now, the downloadable content only made things more confusing.
For those of you who played the downloadable content for XIII-2 and battled Caius over and over again… well I feel bad for you. For starters, the point of the downloadable content was to fight the battle multiples times, and regardless of victory or defeat, you would level Lightning up. After leveling up so far, you were able to view a rather confusing “ending” to the game… or what we all thought was the ending to the game. The whole task was laborious, not especially fun, and playing as one character in a turn-based battle system stinks.
Being able to incorporate multiple people in your “party” is a staple of RPGs. Even when there are several new wrinkles added, the fact is, part of the fun of RPGs is the variety of characters and their respective skill sets. Playing a relatively obtuse character like Lightning for an entire game is probably going to wear thin. Sure, you’ll get to ride around on chocobos, and I am sure there will be some mini-games that will be mildly entertaining. However, I’m just not sure it’s worth the $59.99 price tag.
I hate to write-off a game before I even play it. With that said, I feel like Square Enix has done more than enough to immerse us in this universe. At this point, we’re pretty much drowning in it, and I for one am hungry for more variety at this point. Look, I understand this game has been in the works since XIII-2 released. I am not upset that the game is coming out for the “older” consoles… okay, I am a little upset about it. I don’t know if Square Enix knew that the PS4 and Xbox One were releasing this November, which as a gaming company you’d think you’d be one of the first to know. I would hope that if they did, they would have revisited a world that I think we all would love to venture back to…Final Fantasy VII (with completely updated graphics).