Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Ring of Fates

Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles - Ring of Fates

It's ancient history now, but it's amusing to recall the sheer excitement that greeted the announcement that Square was working on a Final Fantasy game for the GameCube. At last, the fans rejoiced, the prodigal was returning - the local boy made good coming home, and surely, surely, signalling a new golden age for Nintendo in the process? Well...

When Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles arrived, it was a very different beast to the main FF "number series", and proved divisive. Cute, action-focused and fairly distinctly aimed at a younger (or, at least, non-teenaged) audience, its biggest sin in the eyes of many was that it tried too hard to take advantage of the Cube's possibilities - and, in the process, was seen as taking advantage of gamers' hard-pressed wallets. A primarily multiplayer experience, a proper session required that you have two or three friends around, all with their own Game Boy Advance, and with a link cable for each GBA as well.

In the end we loved the game, but we can certainly see how those who don't have any friends (or, at least, any friends who like cute RPGs and own GBAs) could have despised it. Perhaps as a consequence, the excitement around the new Crystal Chronicles game on the DS has been rather muted - but without the need for multiple GBAs, link cables and all that nonsense, does the game deserve more love this time around?

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