12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 12 February 2005
Bizarrely, alot of people reviewing this seem to have had a problem with Square's first outing on a Nintendo for quite some time. Did these people not catch reviews of the game? A quick glance at the blurb on the back of the box? Or did seeing the words Final Fantasy splashed across the front of the box make their hands fly in an uncontrollable spasm to a greasy wad of notes to puchase this game? I don't know.
One thing is for sure, this is NOT the big epic storyline driven FF RPG that we're all used to, but that was apparent from the beginning. The only thing it shares with other installations in the series is the name and perhaps a graphical nod towards the styling of FF9.
No turn based battles, no squad of three taking on random bad guys. This has all been replaced by a real time adventure based game. Monsters in dungeons are on the map and you take them on as you wish, slashing a sword when you want to, chucking a spell when you want to. Very hands on. For those of you lucky enough to have 3 extra mates with GBAs and link cables (ESSENTIAL for multiplayer, not a 'nice to have') you can have the joy of 4 player romps through the game. A nice co-operative ploy that will be conjouring up memories of Gauntlet. Unfortunately this is also a major drawback. Do you actually know 3 other people with GBAs? Would you really want to go out and buy a load of them so that you can play the multiplayer game? No. I once saw a photo of someone who had networked 5 GCs and 5 TVs together to get round this, but thats just SO pratical. I can forsee this being an underused function of the game especially with GC being the only console not to go online. For me ... the GBA is reduced to being my map and status device for the game. Nifty though, a nice touch to have this little device you can peer at to help you out! And what other company thought of having such a wonderful link up idea? More games should be exploiting this.
Now the plot, this is actually very simple for an FF game. The world is enveloped in a deadly Miasma, your village has sent you out on a quest to collect Myrrh from dungeons scattered around the land to find precious drops of this stuff to keep the protective crystal in your village safe. And thats it! You and a squad of another potential 7 travellers set off on this quest. You don't HAVE to use the other 7 character spaces in this game, you can stick with one person the whole way through, and it does seem to be there purely for usage in the multiplayer game ... I find it a shame that in the one player game you can't have some form of computer AI take control of another 3 members in your squad. It would make the gameplay a bit more exciting and frantic. More like a up to date version of Secret of Mana. The only incentive to add members to your squad is to get members with different skills and family trades set up so that the various shops and locations you visit during the game are open to you.
The graphics and music are absolutely lush in this game (check the moments where your character has to push through an elemental miasma boundary - oooh!), again it doesn't quite feel like your usual Final Fantasy which is a bit of a treat. Nobody likes to have the same old stuff served up every time.
If you walk into this game dreaming of a GC alternative to FF7, you're going to be disappointed. The game does have its merits though, its an enjoyable adventure romp. Alot of the fun functions of the game are reserved for the all singing all dancing GBA link up lucky people and you do feel like you're missing out on a bit of the fun that way round. So not quite perfect for the single player but a nice little game anyway. Lets see some more Nintendo outings for this series ... in fact lets see a PROPER next-gen version of the classic Secret Of Mana. Now THAT would be a wicked multiplayer treat.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 14 November 2004
This is a very hard game to review for me, as it is a great game, but a bad Final Fantasy.
The gameplay is great with a simple menu system, handled using the shoulder buttons to flick through the moves on the "command list".
The character creation is good enough, if a little restricted, and the graphics are good. Dungeons are all a bit uninspired, and get tedious, as do the constant barrage of enemies.
Allof the fighting is done in real-time, which may be seen as a good thing, unless you want a true FF.
Here is where we get the problem.
This game is just not Final Fantasy enough. Sure, the Moogles are there, but the story is in no way compelling, being a simple tale of rid the world of poisonous fog.The layout of the game is just level after level after level.
I haven't even tried the two player mode, as it is- annoyingly- set up so every player has to have a GBA, which i find unfair.
Sadly, this does not carry the greatness of all other FF titles, bar X-2, and instead shows the beginnings of another uninspired Square title.
41 of 49 people found the following review helpful
on 31 October 2003
First things First. In-order to play the four player mode you will need Four GBA's and Four GC-GBA Connection wires. Oh and a ton of batteries. But I can tell you, it is well worth it. Basically you and your mates move around a fairly basic FF World. A ton of dungeons and a village here and there. Unlike the previous versions though. You can't actually move in and out the various houses on show. All you do is talk to the people outside. They can range from simple Farmers and Fishermen to the More helpful Black smith and Taylor who can make Weapons, armour and accesories for you. To do this though you need to collect the various bags and scrolls placed within the many dungeons, and you let me tell you there is alot to collect. While you and your mates move around the very well designed dungeons you will be attacked by monsters. The first thing you'll probably find out is that the fighting is in real time. No more waiting for you attack bar to appear, you just run to an enemy and hit A. You can still attack, defend, Use items and cast spells, but it's all in real time. This makes for a better game in my opinion. I bet you're all wondering about the GBA connections right, well I'll tell you (Oh and for those without GBA's, you can use a controller in the one player game). Basically instead of having your menu screen come up on your telly, It comes up on the GBA screen. This is so you cant annoy anyone during play. You just press SELECT and then you turn to your GBA, it's that simple. You can also view a Dungeon map aswell. Really the whole point of the multiplayer game is team work. Inorder for you to do this Square-Enix have made an Object, that can make this possible.
The crystal. Basically One person carries this, and the crystal creates a forcefield. Keep within it and you'll be fine, but go beyond the walls and your health will start falling. This means that the person with the crystal leads the way leaving the others to cure, fight or cast magic. It's very ingenious. You and your mates can also combine the many spells on offer to create better ones. E.G Combine two fires and you get Fire 2, Combine two cures and you get Cure 2. But combine Fire and ice and you get Gravity, which is useful for grounding enemies. It's a very clever system. Now lets talk about the graphics. They are simply amazing. You can not appriciate the game by a couple os screen shots, you actually have to see the game in play. The only real drawback with game I played, is that it was Japanese (I imported it.). But by the standards set by this I'd have to say that this is the greatest 4-player game ever and probably the best Final Fantasy. I can't wait for the English Version.
on 11 October 2014
The world is covered is Maisma, a toxic substance that saps your very life force after an prolonged contact. The way to survive is using Crystals. Crystals protect towns and villages from Miasma but must be purified every year with Myrrh, an extremely rare liquid that can only be found in Myrrh Trees scattered throughout the world. You play as an adventurer (or adventuters in multiplayer) with a caravan, sent from your village to find Myrrh for your village's crystal.
Your village's only chance for survival is literally in your hands.
----------------------------The Good Stuff------------------------------------------------
The simple and cartoony art style lends itself well to the simplistic story and overall I'd say it's graphical style has aged very well. It still looks good even compared to today's games because it's not trying to be hyper realistic.
The choice of different races, choosing your name as well as your village's name made it feel a lot more personal and I can easily see how this might pull a younger player into the experience all the more.
The music also feels well done. True to Final fantasy tradition the soundtrack to this game is very well composed with some solid themes and melodies throughout.
--------------------The Bad Stuff--------------------
The game plays well but it feels very limiting in it's combat controls. All actions are done with the A button, while you cycle between actions using the left and right shoulder buttons. For the most part this is fine until you realise this make it very difficult to attack and then immediately defend which is pretty much a staple of playing action rpg's like this. One button to attack, another to defend.
I realise this was meant to make the controls simpler for kids, but honestly I think children deserve more credit than this game is giving them.
Despite my earlier praise of the soundtrack honestly there could be more of it. Despite the quality of the composition, you'll still wish the map screen's music was longer because you'll be hearing it repeat a lot because you spent a decent amount of time on this screen. And this problem isn't just isolated to the map screen unfortunately.
Ultimately this is a good game, you can easily see what it was trying to do which for the most part it did accomplish it's goals. It just seems like a little more effort could have been put into the actual game-play and less on small gimmicks to appeal to children.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 18 March 2004
It's about time Square decided to support formats other than just the Playstation, because everyone should be able to sample the delights of the Final Fantasy series.
Having played all of the FF games available on both the Playstation, and PS2 - I was delighted to hear that Square were using the Gamecube as a testing platform for their new ideas. Using real-time battles for the first time in the FF series, much akin to that employed in Zelda games. Some people may find this boring after a while, but I must say that it is quite enjoyable actually 'controlling' the characters, as apposed to selecting what they do from a menu.
I really had fun playing through this game, although I often lost track of time - something that Final Fantasy games have a habit of doing to me. The graphics are breath-taking in places, especially when the camera decides to zoom in, and it has typical FF sound effects.
The reason I have decided to award this 'only' 4-stars is that it doesn't have any real character progression, the story-line is extremely thin, and you can't explore every building as you could in the previous games. It could disapoint hardcore FF gamers, but is a very good game in its' own right, and I look forward to a more developed/advanced sequel of this. A very good platform for which Square to develop from, and I fully recommend this game to anyone.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 30 August 2004
I bought this game expecting it to be brilliant, having had good reports of other final fantaay games on the playstation. However, i was very disappointed when i finally go to play it that most of the game requires a Gameboy Advance. All the multiplayer parts require each of your friends and you to have a Gameboy Advance and unfortunately i don't have one so can't comment on those areas of the game.
The parts of the game that don't need an GA are ok. But a little repetitive, the fact that it is possible to do the same levels to get the myrrh for your village is frustrating but also necessary since sometimes it is not possible to travel through the miasma streams because you have the wrong element and can't change it to the correct one.
All in all i became very frustrated with the game very quickly, please stop making gamecube games that need a GA for all the good bits!
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 16 March 2004
It's a Final Fantasy; and that is why i rared up and sent someone out to America to pick up a copy before the English release. BAD idea.
The game's bad points are:
1) The story line is more dull than a 2d retro/arcade game. The story is blunt and VERY basic. This is obviously a huge let down as Final Fantasy's are known to have some of the best stroylines around (Final Fantasy 7 just can't be topped)
2) Whilst in dungeons you have to carry (or have carried at a restricting pace behind you) a Crystal Chalice, so as you are not affected by the world's miasma. This is not only deadly in battles but VERY restricting to movement and capabilities
3) The finance system is terrible; it is extremely hard to gain even 1000 gil (even when you get far into the game), there are very few items to buy and upgrading weapons and accesories is too expensive and the whole weapon aspect is ruined by the small amount of available weapons.
4) Towns are boring, with nothing to do. It no longer has that feeling that the old FF's had, where when you get to a new town you are full of anticipation to what it is like and what items will be on sale.
5) You are thrown into each single plot one-by-one without giving you forward information. For example you will be introduced to a new 'big bad guy' and the first you hear about it is the first time you see it! There is no build up atall
6) The battle system surprisingly is worse than Kingdom Hearts's ,as there are no special moves or upgraded combos.
The few good points are:
1) Spectactular graphics! Mainly showed by the amazing water effects.
2) Real time battle system which allows you to freely escape or fight as you will
3) 28 different character designs to make your character from
As a die hard Final Fantasy fan i can't say no to ANY Final Fantasy release and generally this game is okay for your spare time but if i wasn't so obsessed with Final Fantasy's i would save my money for the next one. It's okay if you miss just one out, right???
on 8 July 2013
I've had Crystal Chronicles since it's release back in the UK back in 2004 I remember using my GC controller when my friends weren't around to help but when they came round they were sure to bring their gameboy advances and link cables and we'd just play till it was morning. Crystal Chronicles marathon on weekends!!! The only real difference between playing it solo and playing it with friends is that it was somewhat tougher to solo. Recently I dug up my old GameCube and rang up my friends and they've come round whenever they're not working and we just play FF:CC till they need to get to work again it's such good fun and great to bring old friends together :)
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 2 April 2007
Crystal Chronicles may have its flaws, but it's still a game worthy enough to be played in a wide time-span.
The character selection is actually quite interesting in the way that you are not restricted to one character to fight through the storyline. You can choose to specialise in strength, defence, magic, speed, and you even get a variety of looks to choose from. You gotta admit that's quite cool.
The levels also make a nice change from other FF games, as you have a nice variety of landscapes and enemies to fight through. The graphics on the water (thinking River Belle Path here) is actually quite amazing... but the monsters and especially the bosses are also pleasing to look at graphically. The music is also a nice touch (and VERY catchy at times :>)
The multiplayer... alright, the fact that you need game boy advances is a slight rip-off, i admit. However, this can be great fun! All I can say is don't knock it 'til you've tried it.
One bad thing which I will also not forget to mention about this game is the fighting system. I will not deny that it does seem that all you're doing is pressing A all the time. But it's not about that - the game looks and sounds incredible. I'd be lying if I said this game is extremely easy, but it's all about what goes on on-screen that makes this game as good as it is.
Hardcore FF fans may be a bit annoyed at this game, but for newcomers to the series this is a worthy starting point, especially if you have a couple of mates to play around with on it.
on 6 January 2009
I got this game for under £20 and I found it an alright game to play. I played this in single player and found it more difficult than it would be in multi but still a lot of fun.
The good points is that the game has great music, graphics are really nice for a cube game. Also there was some humor as well and some cute character design. The bad points is that there is hardly a story in this game compared with most square-enix games.