Final Fantasy Agito is a free-to-play video game for Android and iOS platforms. The game is based in the same world as Final Fantasy Type-0 but isn’t really a sequel or a prequel. The developers have stated that the game is more like a “reimagination” with the same world and characters. As Final Fantasy Agito was released in Japan today, I started a new journey and experienced what Agito has to offer. The preview is based on a few hours long test session, and it includes non-compressed direct-feed screenshots from the iPad version, thoughts and information about Square Enix’s latest mobile game release.
After downloading the 55mb game file, you start the game by creating your character. There are a few customization options to choose from: gender, hairstyle, hair and skin colors, fighting style and voice. I decided to create a female character called “Eclair”. There wasn’t much variation in the character editor: four different faces, six different hairstyles and three different voice actings. It’s still better than just letting you choose from default characters, but I wished there would have been a larger scale of options to choose from, especially with faces and hairstyle.
The last step is to choose your main fighting style: Are you a dual-wielding swordman, a gunner or a dragoon-like spear warrior? It was nicely refreshing to finally see a gunner job, so I went with it. At the beginning it is not possible to affect your outfit but, later on, the game lets you change weapons and appearances, which partly justifies the lack of variety in the editor.
Once you have created and named your character, the game directs you to the download scene. Yes, meanwhile I was creating my character, the game had started to download rest of the game. This is a great feature, if you have a fast connection, but I found it a bit troublesome since I have a slow connection and going to multitasking mode restarted the download. Saying that, the app needs to be turned on the whole time it downloads the 2.6GB game file. That’s why I highly recommend reserving enough time before starting the game because it takes time. Plugging your device in charger is also a good idea. Personally, it would been nicer if I could have downloaded the full file even before starting the game. Not the best designing choice for a slow connection, but it doesn’t ruin the game, hah.
When it comes to battle system, it’s very automatized and simplified when compared to Final Fantasy Type-0. Your character automatically runs towards enemies, you point the target and she strikes it. When tapping at the right moment, you can deal extra damage with critical hits. My character “Eclair” became a gunner with black mage abilities, so I had a chance to use powerful spells such as blizzard, thunder, fire and cure. They were useful when during challenging fights, but with basic enemies normal point and shoot worked perfectly. HP can be recovered by using cure or changing character’s stance from attack mode to healing mode, where she is unable to attack enemies.
Duties are chosen from the world map. Before entering the battle, you can pick up two partners to fight alongside you. These character won’t stay in your party more than one duty and each of them has his own job and weapon combinations and levels. All battles were shared into three waves, where the last one was the most challenging. After completing your guest, you will rewarded experience points and items, which can be used to gain better stats and equipment. All players start from the Class 12 and by leveling up and completing quests it’s possible to rank up all the way to Class 1, and become one of the best students of the academy.
The quests I played were mostly solo missions. The game also offers a multiplayer mode where you can take down gigantic monsters with your friends or random players. These quests are very similar to Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn’s trials where you need to beat a primal together with other players! If you think you partners were worth an applaud, you can give them a player recommendation by liking them and even recommend them for your friends.
CONTROLS & SOCIALIZING
Moving around the world happens by controlling a virtual stick, and by swiping the screen, you can control the camera. As I explored the academy, moving didn’t feel as accurate as one would have hoped, especially if I wanted to adjust my character to a certain position for a screenshot. Luckily, each interactive NPC has an icon over his/her head and by double tapping it your characters runs towards them and starts discussion. With some characters you can deepen your relationship by playing a small minigame where you need to tap a heart as much as you can. Alongside these NPC social quests, the game allows you to use different social features such as comparing your scores with other players in the leaderboards.
Here we come to graphics: Final Fantasy Agito is a very beautiful mobile game. Character models and environment are remade for the new mobile version, and the results are great. The world seems more detailed and polished with increased resolution and higher polygon models. The battle effects have been upgraded as well. Overall, the game looks and plays well, however, I experienced some FPS drop during the fights. They may be related to iPad 3rd Gen. model. Square Enix recommends playing the game with iPhone 5 or newer, and I’m expecting it to be the same with iPads – newer is better. Nevertheless, the game runs acceptable enough on 3rd gen. iPads, so no worries about downloading the game for it.
Final Fantasy Agito leaves me excited to experience more. It’s technically a solid release and one of the best looking games on the mobile market. The production values are very high whether it comes to content, graphics or music. It will be interesting to see how much the battle system evolves during the story, and how many customization options there will be available later on. If Final Fantasy Agito is ever released in the West, I highly recommend giving it a run and not underestimating it just because it’s a mobile title. However, it is still unknown if it will be enough to fill the big boots of its parent game, Final Fantasy Type-0. There we come to a problem: does Final Fantasy Agito offer anything to special over Final Fantasy Type-0? It sure focuses more on the social side with multiplayer features, and customization seems to have more variety. But are these features enough to make it stand out by its own?