Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy

For those of you not familiar with the original Dissidia let me fill you in. Dissidia: Final Fantasy is an arena based 3D fighting game, with strong RPG character development mechanics, starring heroes and villains taken from each of the core (numbered) Final Fantasy games. The original game reviewed well but may have been overlooked by gamers as mere fan service; a real shame as it was excellent fun and very rewarding. Dissidia 012 or Duodecim, as we shall call it here, is a prequel to the original story and continues to explore the endless battle that is raging between good and evil. The forces of good and evil have summoned the aforementioned heroes and villains to fight for their cause, forming two opposing teams made up of the most famous faces from the world of Final Fantasy.

Duodecim features all the original cast and adds eight new fighters from across the Final Fantasy series. The most obvious addition is Lighting to bring the cast more up to date but some fan favorites in the form of Tifa and Yuna also step up to the plate. I was very pleased to see Vaan from XII make the cut and pleasantly surprised by the unexpected inclusion of the gun happy Laguna From VIII, especially as both of these chaps have interesting play styles to explore.

Battles in Dissidia take place in 3D arenas filled with various buildings, paths and ‘grind rails’, all of which can be used to get closer to, or, should the situation demand it, run away from your opponent. Fighting comes down to two attack types: bravery attacks that drain your opponent’s bravery meter to fill your own and HP attacks that deal damage to your opponent’s HP equal to the value of your bravery meter. Simple enough but there is complexity in the management of these meters while navigating the 3D battlefield and executing attacks with optimal timing. Special/hyper/ultra moves are delivered in the form EX attacks performed using yet another meter and all new assist attacks from your chosen partner. In addition to this you have items and summons to help you along the way, all filling the screen with glorious special effects.

Each fight you undertake will earn you experience leveling up your chosen character, this is persistent throughout story and quick battle modes and any of the cast you had played with in the original will be present and powered up thanks to the option of importing your previous save. If you have downloaded the PSN title Duodecim Prologus then you can also carry over some content from there as well as unlocking Aerith as a special assist only character (and no, she doesn’t just get in the way of Sephiroth sword!).

Visually the game delivers more or less the same level of glitz as the original but this is far from a bad thing; the new environments and characters are presented with the same level of attention and the game looks great overall. The original cast have even been given some new costumes and weapons. The cutscenes that guide you through the story are up to the usual standard expected from Square Enix and are a delight to behold, and enhanced even more by the fact that you are seeing the likes of Tifa and Lightning fighting side by side. One very nice visual addition to the story mode is the new world map; when moving from battle to battle you will now be traversing a traditional style ‘overworld’ map rather than just the grid based pathways of the previous title.

I may have given you the impression that you can only play as heroes in Duodecim but that is just a personal preference; I’m a goody two shoes when it comes to battles between light and dark. You can most certainly play as the baddies, it just means you’re a terrible person.







One response to “Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy”

  1. Leon avatar

    I was half tempted not to read this in case it was bad news (I like to live in ignorant bliss sometimes), but I’m really glad it’s done well.

    Can’t wait for this game 😀 Shame it clashes with 3DS launch day, though.

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