Video Games > Legacy Systems > Playstation > Product: 254751

Final Fantasy VII

Product Description

1 Player

RPG

3 Disc Set

Excellent graphics, sound, story and playability

Imported from USA

.com
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Long recognized as role-playing games par excellence, the Final Fantasy series gets a technological makeover
in this installment (and series debut on the PlayStation). Shedding the two-dimensional graphics and limited sound
capabilities of its predecessors, Final Fantasy VII features lush 3-D graphics, beautifully animated "movie" sequences,
and soundtrack-quality music. Coupled with the game's intricate storyline, endearing characters, and immense yet
highly imaginative world, these new advancements make for a quite an engrossing experience.

The story of Final Fantasy VII centers around a solider named Cloud Strife, who joins forces with Avalanche, a group
of resistance fighters, to take down an evil mega-corporation known as Shinra. (The fate of the world hangs in the
balance, of course.) Truly epic in scope, this four-disc game requires a considerable amount of time to complete---this
reviewer gladly gave up over 80 hours of his life to finish it. But it's definitely a rewarding adventure that every
PlayStation owner should consider undertaking, especially since it's now one of the low-priced "Greatest Hits" titles.
--Joe Hon

Pros:

* Intricate and absorbing storyline with endearing characters
* Immense and highly imaginative game world
* Special battle system
* Beautifully animated movie sequences
Cons:

* Your friends and family may feel neglected

Review
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Never before have technology, playability, and narrative combined as well as in Final Fantasy VII. The
culmination of Square Soft's monumental effort is a game that will enrich just as it will entertain. Yet, for all the
boundless praise it so rightfully deserves, Final Fantasy VII is not without its shortcomings and occasional design
problems. These are enough to make some gamers (who are unfamiliar with RPGs, to be sure) wonder just why anyone would
bother playing through it in the first place.

This is the most dazzling visual experience to date on any console. Film-quality computer-generated cinematics blend
seamlessly with pre-rendered background artwork to create the strikingly realistic world of Final Fantasy VII, both
beautiful in its grandeur and terrifying in its detail. The overworld and battle sequences are presented in full
polygonal splendor with just a touch of texture mapping for good measure. But you haven't seen anything until you
witness some of the more powerful magic spells in the game. Massive dragons heed your bidding, dwarfing your gigantic
enemies tenfold; an earth titan tears the ground up from beneath your enemies' feet, flinging them aside like toy
blocks. Some of these summoning spells cut to over half a dozen different camera angles as the catastrophe unfolds.
Meanwhile, a masterfully orchestrated soundtrack - courtesy of veteran composer Nobuo Uematsu - is a major force behind
the intense emotion of Final Fantasy VII. The synthesized musical score hearkens Final Fantasy's golden age on the Super
Nintendo, consciously staying true to its roots.

Yet for all its top-notch graphics and sound, truly the best aspect of Final Fantasy VII is the plot that these peerless
aesthetics help weave. Join the enigmatic mercenary Cloud Strife in a journey that will take him to the very source of
his being in an incredible quest where the fate of the world hangs by a precious thread, threatening at any instant to
be torn by the charismatic, tormented villain of the story. Final Fantasy VII's moving plot is influenced by some of the
greatest works of science fiction film and literature, including Frank Herbert's Dune, Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, and
even Godzilla.

If you were to strip away the story, scenery, and musical score, Final Fantasy VII would otherwise be very much like any
other Japanese RPG you've ever played. You still must face countless random monster encounters while keeping a close eye
on your hit points and magic points, and you will witness your characters grow stronger with every experience level they
attain. Battles are fought in typical Japanese RPG fashion (albeit with fully polygonal graphics), with your team on one
side and any number of opponents on the other. You exchange blows until you or the enemy is defeated. Fights are made
interesting with the introduction of Limit Breaks (devastating desperation attacks) and Materia, the curious colored
crystals that let your party use magic and other special abilities. Materia can be found or purchased and mixed and
matched to create all sorts of interesting effects. Best of all, there are more than enough hidden Materia, weapons, and
optional plot sequences in the game to merit playing it through at least twice.

Some have gone as far as to call Final Fantasy VII the hands-down best game ever made. And if you enjoy a good
Japanese-style RPG, chances are you will agree. However, Final Fantasy VII, for all its astonishing features, is not a
game with the sort of mass appeal that its massive marketing blitz may lead you to believe. For one thing, you can't
finish it in a sitting, as Final Fantasy VII will be a solid 40 to 50-hour commitment for the average role-playing
gamer. Otherwise, you might be taken aback by the extensive, text-heavy dialogue; there is no speech at all in Final
Fantasy VII, in the interest of letting your imagination do a little work. Though you will make many small-scale
decisions over the course of the game, on the whole, the story follows a very linear path. This linearity is a
by-product of the plot's complexity, however - certainly a respectable sacrifice.

Sony's translation of the original Japanese dialogue is direct and first-rate, much to the relief of Final Fantasy
purists everywhere. Nitpickers may identify a very occasional spelling or grammar error ("Off course!" agrees Cloud at
the Golden Saucer battle arena), but otherwise this text-heavy game reads just right, flawlessly conveying each
character's distinct personality. Even the foul-mouthed costars of the game retain their affronting attitudes, as Sony
went as far as to translate certain four-letter words in the interest of staying true to the Japanese script. --Greg
Kasavin
--Copyright ©1999 GameSpot Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without
express written permission of GameSpot is prohibited. GameSpot and the GameSpot logo are trademarks of GameSpot Inc. --
GameSpot Review

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