I’ve found that, as of late, the time I’ve been able to dedicate to gaming has dwindled somewhat. Responsibilities lie before me, and I have to make a conscious effort to decide whether or not I can afford to spend an hour or so on a game of my choosing, and what activities I would subsequently be able to complete in such a relatively small amount of time. With recent releases, such as Pokemon and Final Fantasy XV, demanding copious amounts of hours in order to achieve the achievable, and almost as much time to partially achieve your task. The train of thought that often follows my incessant wondering of what game to sit down to play is what game would I consider to have less flaws, and what is more deserving of my time. That would leave me, therefore, with Pokemon Sun, a truly spectacular return to form, a game that breaks the mold of generations past and brings a refreshing rhythm to the aging series.
In reality, however, I have consistently picked Final Fantasy, even in spite of all it’s flaws, of which there are undoubtedly many. With this title essentially surviving what many can only assume was development hell, having first been announced back in the E3 of 2006 under the original guise of Final Fantasy Versus XIII, it’s fair to say that there was ample anticipation for not only XV to be released, but for the dream to be realised and have the widely considered stagnating series brought back to the limelight, holding it with the same reverence in which it was once held back in it’s heyday. At the risk of sounding like a ‘fanboy’, a title that will, without fail, draw negative connotations, I always believed that I would enjoy the title regardless of however long I had waited for it. Whilst I do fall in the minority in those regards, critical reception upon launch was mostly positive. One glance at the Final Fantasy Reddit will show that this game is divisive amongst it’s fan base, however, but I can’t recall a Final Fantasy title that didn’t divide the community in some manner, so one can take reassurance in that it’s managed to retain that aspect, at least.
My first dive into Eos, the world in which FFXV takes place in, I immediately found myself in awe, enjoying the spectacles that this fully realised world had to offer. Throughout my many hours that followed, albeit in small chunks of playtime, I encountered issue after issue, whether it be with an often lackluster method in which the game presents stories, plot holes that further worsened the aforementioned issue, and a god awful camera that plagued tight corridors that housed numerous enemies. Events occur in the main story that should illicit some form of a response, and whilst the humble beginnings of an emotional impact may have stirred inside, it got no further than that.
This all being said, I did not love the game any less, and fully accepted that this is the current state of the game, for better or worse. Whilst it certainly did not make my adore the game any more, the oversights that a team had, especially on a game that was over 10 years in the making, did not detract from the overall experience. This was interesting to me, as I’ve often been very critical of games I have poured countless hours in to, but it appears to me that I’ve somehow severed the mental link that had formed over my 20-something years of gaming that perfection, or at least levels considered close to perfection, and enjoyment are intrinsically linked.
Thing is, I wouldn’t say that I’ve thought this way about other media. Is this, then, related to the way that the masses view gaming as a whole, and that perception has subconsciously imprinted this idea on to me, or am I in the minority here? Whatever the answer be, I’ll certainly make sure to move that going forward, and continue to love Final Fantasy XV in the meantime.
Is Nick in the minority here? Let us know!