Metascore
71

Mixed or average reviews - based on 49 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 49
  2. Negative: 1 out of 49
  1. Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light is certainly an interesting experience when it comes to many of its unique gameplay mechanics, but the game's overflowing sense of charm and hardcore level of challenge make it an irresistible experience for seasoned RPG fans.
  2. Dec 22, 2010
    89
    It's been a good while since I've played an RPG title that has brought back the almost true spirit of the Nintendo Hard era. Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light may not be the perfect old school RPG but it is up there on my list of must play titles for the DS and of 2010.
  3. Jan 12, 2011
    84
    Final Fantasy: 4 Heroes of Light is a nice sequel of the Final Fantasy series with well developed characters, a good story mode with many twists and turns and love for detail.
  4. Dec 22, 2010
    83
    Matrix Software has now made three good-to-great games in a row for the DS: Avalon Code, Nostalgia and now 4 Heroes of Light. I only wish they could take one of these fantastic concepts and push it over the hump from "really good" to "exceptional."
  5. Dec 22, 2010
    83
    All things considered, this is a Final Fantasy game that expects you to pray at the altar of grind. 4 Heroes embraces the goddess of grind unapologetically, but throws in enough changes to the system to create something that's worth experiencing.
  6. Oct 22, 2010
    83
    With almost 25 hours of play, precious visuals and a demanding and strategic battle system, Final Fantasy The 4 Heroes of Light is a very complete RPG experience.
  7. But Heroes Of Light transcends these hiccups, and its oversimplified nature, to become a vital portable Final Fantasy title.
  8. 83
    It's a grand, involving adventure, but it's one that plays by its own rules -- not by the rules of Final Fantasy. It's a game less likely to appeal to fans of the series than it is to people who are drawn to tough RPGs in the old-school vein; there's more of Shiren the Wanderer here than of Cloud Strife or Terra Branford.
  9. Dec 22, 2010
    82
    Admittedly, Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light is not the same as the classics from two decades ago, but nothing ever will be. This is as close as we're getting for now, so take advantage of this opportunity.
  10. Jan 20, 2011
    80
    Where it really excels is in its world design. [Issue#102, p.104]
  11. Dec 19, 2010
    80
    Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light is another proposal of high quality in the already full catalog of Nintendo's handheld platform.
  12. 80
    Its quirky combat and unique take on character development are welcome diversions from the RPG norms. The difficulty and lack of guidance will turn some people off, but people who enjoy the RPG genre should find the game a charming adventure.
  13. Dec 19, 2010
    80
    If you've been dying for a classic Final Fantasy title that's closer in mechanics to Final Fantasy IV than Final Fantasy XIII, you'll enjoy 4 Heroes of Light. If you despise retro RPG conventions, 4 Heroes is not for you unless you really want to morph into a chicken.
  14. It's best not to go into the game expecting a true Final Fantasy experience, but diehard RPG fans won't be disappointed.
  15. Four Heroes of Light is very much its own thing; quaint and deceptively difficult - a combination that fans of the genre should grab hold of with both hands.
  16. Stylistic contradictions and clunky mechanics stop this from being an instant classic, but tight pacing, winsome presentation, and the FF pedigree still make it well worth a look.
  17. 80
    At times it feels too focused on level grinding, and it's hard to get into if you're expecting a standard RPG, but it's the nonstandard qualities that ultimately make it shine.
  18. As an older player with fond memories of early 8- and 16-bit RPGs, I found its nostalgia trip to be well worth taking. But if I were playing it without that past experience, I'm not sure how much I would appreciate its intentionally dated game design. [Nov 2010, p.86]
  19. It has its problems, but fans of old-fashioned JRPGs will find a lot to like in The 4 Heroes of Light.
  20. Final Fantasy 4 Heroes of Light is a true classic RPG. It seems like you're playing on a Super Nintendo, when the saga was focused on the search for the crystals and a simple but fun gameplay.
  21. Dec 25, 2010
    79
    A low fat FF rather than RPG heavyweight but still an ideal handheld adventure. [Issue#231, p.76]
  22. Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light is certainly an interesting experience. Its oversimplified nature is ideal for RPG newcomers.
  23. If you enjoy nail-biting, difficulty-driven gameplay, then this title will give you plenty of hours of frustrating and exhilarating gameplay. If you are more of a story-driven or action-RPG fan, leave this one on the shelf.
  24. Dec 22, 2010
    75
    Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light will appeal to fans of the classic, old school RPGs, but is likely to turn off casual or veteran fans of the series.
  25. It takes some time to get off the ground, but this traditional-style role-playing game is an enjoyable flight of fancy and fantasy.
  26. 75
    Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light successfully captures the pure magic and essence of Final Fantasy. It is a game that is true to the heart and soul of the franchise, for better or for worse.
  27. This Final Fantasy is an old school JRPG with good ideas but has a too simple battle system and a poor and generic plot.
  28. Hard and merciless, as an old-school RPG. Too linear and static as well.
  29. Dec 22, 2010
    74
    There is no doubt that if you like old style RPGs, you will like The 4 Heroes of Light.
  30. Less than ideal for RPG newcomers. Charm wins through, but you'll have to be v-e-r-y patient.
  31. For everything the game does right, though, there's the pervasive, underlying whiff of a brand in crisis.
  32. Feb 15, 2011
    70
    Final Fantasy The Four Heroes of Light is a nice addition to the ever growing collection of the franchise. While not deliberate enough in it's efforts to be a numbered entry, it still represents the series as a whole.
  33. 70
    Naïve in looks but brutal in nature. Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light certainly isn't for the wide audience. Fan of the recent games in the series are likely to throw away their DS in frustration over defeat upon defeat. But it is sure to satisfy old-school Final Fantasy-fans, and the minimalistic approach is refreshing.
  34. Jan 3, 2011
    70
    4 Heroes of Light is a JRPG fix. It looks alright and it plays alright and the baggage it carries is something you can either get past or despise depending on your attitude towards JRPGs.
  35. Jan 1, 2011
    70
    While it's cute, has great music, has its fun moments, and introduces a great new job system with the crowns, the tediousness and lack of interest make it a subpar RPG.
  36. Its back-to-basics approach strips away much of the pointless frippery of the modern JRPG without stripping out the satisfaction of playing them. The DS isn't short of absorbing RPGs, but 4 Heroes of Light is a worthwhile addition, particularly for anyone with fond memories of simpler, happier times for Japanese role-playing.
  37. So, maybe this isn't really a Final Fantasy game. It doesn't really matter, because 4 Heroes is supremely challenging and occasionally inventive - and what recent, successful Final Fantasy game can you really say that about?
  38. A great game for those who are nostalgic or meticulous or for large families.
  39. Dec 22, 2010
    67
    If you like old-school JRPGs, flaws and all, you should enjoy this game.
  40. Final Fantasy: 4 Heroes of Light drops the cinematic look of the franchise for a much more traditional gameplay. It's an halfmade attempt however because many features are excessively out-of-date and players find theirselve struggling more against an unfriendly game-design than the monsters inhabiting the world of Brandt and his friends. With an excellent visual and art direction as its best feats, Final Fantasy: 4 Heroes of Light is a JRPG which will appeal nostalgic players especially, but it is nowhere close to the quality provided by Dragon Quest IX: Sentinels of the Starry Skies.
  41. Dec 22, 2010
    60
    Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light delivers an RPG that has far more in common with early iterations of the Final Fantasy series than anything after V, and slips in a fair number of direct references to them.
  42. Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light isn't glitchy or broken, but that's the highest compliment I can muster.
  43. Dec 22, 2010
    55
    "Quotation Forthcoming"
  44. Mar 11, 2011
    50
    FFT4HoL revives an old-school design with a new aesthetic, but which misguided aspects of that design come along with it will divide the line between appealing and off-putting to players.
  45. Dec 19, 2010
    50
    It's a shame, because despite all of the rampant bad old-schooliness (I'm coining that phrase right here, right now), 4 Heroes of Light has some good qualities and I actually started enjoying it right about the midway point when you get your whole party together and the crown system kicks in full swing. The problem is that you have to slog through the first half to get there, and even then all the annoyances and frustrations are still lurking – they're just a little easier to ignore.
  46. An unappealing mix of role-playing clichés and purposefully limited gameplay options that has little to do with Final Fantasy, past or future.
  47. 50
    The story and dialogue aren't deep -- the play and art are the stars of the show -- but what little there is comes off as morally confused.
  48. Dec 19, 2010
    40
    So indebted is dev studio Matrix to the old ways that it seems to have granted a free pass to the old problems. Quest signposting is buried in unclear dialogue snippets, bosses are beaten through trial and error, and grinding is rife. [Dec 2010, p.99]
User Score
7.3

Mixed or average reviews- based on 33 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 15
  2. Negative: 3 out of 15
  1. Jan 19, 2012
    4
    This is one of those games I wanted to like so much, but it just couldn't live up to its potential. I'd just come off an invigorating Etrian Odyssey binge, and I wanted another game where you get to customize your characters with class/skill levels and gear and whatnot. And it really does sound promising. You have a team of four heroes who can constantly switch classes in order to learn new skills and become even more powerful as time goes on. There is a pretty huge catch, though: rarely do you control all four at one time until close to the end of the game. This led to frustrating sequence after frustrating sequence as every time I felt I had characters that complemented each other well, one of them would bugger off and leave me with just one character plus a worthless TEMPORARY one. And don't get me started on the gems. Oh, the gems...because if you want to level up your classes, you better be memorizing what gems are showing up where when you fight, because otherwise you can't learn new skills at all without them. These two things combined with a very limited inventory system that punished you on boss fights for not looking at a FAQ beforehand were enough to kill my enjoyment of the game. The music was fine, the graphics looked good, the plot...was a Squeenix story, I guess. I just wanted a fun game to play, and I didn't get one. Full Review »
  2. Aug 16, 2011
    10
    The 4 Heroes of Light is everything you love about old school RPGs, requiring a lot of exploring with a just-big-enough world to explore and a hint of guidance. It comes wrapped in a deceptively cute aesthetic, with lush, painterly graphics which I hope to see more of from Square. Full Review »
  3. Nov 6, 2010
    9
    This game is not like modern day games whereby it is easy to move through a dungeon.
    This game has complicated dungeons whereby the maps are
    huge and it is hard to move through them.
    The crown system in this game, is truly remarkable as players can try to use many different jobs rather than sticking to one throughout the whole game which many games have these days.
    The graphics of this game is quite appealing too, although some of the major towns and cities are abit messy. For example, players of the game should know the town of Urbeth, which is very messy (the shops are all spread out).
    However, the point where monsters level up as you level up, I feel, is one of the best gifts of this game. This function is not only rarely seen in such games, but is also a function that people can appreciate and not get bored of. Reason being is that players need to grind at certain points of the game. If the monsters levels are not boosted, grinding would be very hard. This function thus enables players to grind easier. However, one thing that I don't like is the lack of space to hold items. (A total of sixty items for four characters; that's pretty little).
    Full Review »