Final Fantasy XII Image
Metascore
92

Universal acclaim - based on 64 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.8

Generally favorable reviews- based on 770 Ratings

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  • Summary: The story takes place in a world called "Ivalice," in an age when magic was commonplace and airships plied the skies - the Archadian Empire, seeking to strengthen its base of power, had been invading and subjugating its neighboring lands one by one- a fate which befell the small Kingdom ofThe story takes place in a world called "Ivalice," in an age when magic was commonplace and airships plied the skies - the Archadian Empire, seeking to strengthen its base of power, had been invading and subjugating its neighboring lands one by one- a fate which befell the small Kingdom of Dalmasca. Archadia's invasion and the subsequent death of the Dalmascan king prompted the Princess Ashe, the sole surviving heir to the Dalmascan throne, to take up arms against the invaders. In her struggle to oust the occupying Archadian forces and restore freedom to her people, Ashe must watch as many of her allies pay the blood price for that freedom. Though tempted to abandon all hope in the face of the Empire's might, her determination keeps her from succumbing before what would seem to be inevitable defeat. Then she meets Vaan, an urchin from the Dalmascan capital of Rabanastre. Vaan dreams of one day becoming a sky pirate, escaping the Empire on his airship. Vaan, Ashe, Vaan's friend Penelo, the sky pirate Balthier, his partner Fran and many more are on an adventure through Ivalice that traces the mysteries behind the Archadian Empire's invasion. Bringing with it a wide array of new gameplay elements, Final Fantasy XII will change the way players think about the Final Fantasy series. Numerous possibilities abound within each scenario, allowing for a less linear, more unique experience for each player. The game also supports Dolby Pro Logic II both in-game and during movie sequences, immersing the player in the middle of the action. [Square Enix] Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 61 out of 64
  2. Negative: 0 out of 64
  1. 100
    The game looks great, sounds great, has great writing, offers a lengthy and satisfying journey, has a great technical element and engaging sword-swinging and spell-slinging. It would be difficult to find a game out there with better production values, or that meets its goals so successfully while still introducing new ideas and innovations.
  2. With an engaging story, incredible visuals, great audio, and a cohesive and epic experience, FFXII is easily one of the best RPGs available now.
  3. Simply the best game available on any system right now and is the best Final Fantasy to date.
  4. It’s a flawed great game. The battle system is fast and fun, yet it’s a bit simple and repetitive. The license board provides non-linear character growth, yet there aren’t that many ways to raise the characters. The towns feel alive and outdo anything to date, yet the dungeons feel all too similar and repetitive. [JPN Import]
  5. Thanks to the strong attention to detail, the world of Ivalice feels less like a video game and more like an actual place. Not only are the actions and motivations of the various characters believable, but the characters themselves are often quite memorable to boot.
  6. From its lively outdoor backdrops to the striking architecture found in its cities and dungeons, this PS2 title will even please--at least visually--those with next-gen FF firmly on the brain. [Nov. 2006, p.126]
  7. 62
    Mind, it’s still a decent game with gorgeous graphics and an incredible environment, but it possesses little of the magic that some of its predecessors have.

See all 64 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 51 out of 257
  1. EoghanR.
    Jan 9, 2007
    10
    This game is best game I have ever played, it has amazing visuals. An excellent soundtrack and an utterly brilliant, well thought out story This game is best game I have ever played, it has amazing visuals. An excellent soundtrack and an utterly brilliant, well thought out story with really interesting characters and locations with the best Final Fantasy battle-system I have ever seen (I still love all Final Fantasy's though!) this has made Final Fantasy look like it should be. p.s. can't wait until Final Fantasy XIII. Expand
  2. GalvinO.
    Jun 29, 2008
    10
    The best RPG on PS2. Anyone who says FFX is better than this likes linear interactive movies that focus too much on story over gameplay.
  3. ScottB
    Feb 4, 2010
    10
    A very rewarding experience and a majestic soundtrack. Whilst previous Final Fantasy games were rather linear, Final Fantasy 12 lets you go A very rewarding experience and a majestic soundtrack. Whilst previous Final Fantasy games were rather linear, Final Fantasy 12 lets you go exploring for yourself in a large open world. A fantasic new 'License Board' system brings new depth to levelling up, blowing Final Fantasy 10's 'Sphere Grid' completely out of the water. A true masterpiece. Expand
  4. dz9
    Jul 27, 2011
    8
    I'm going to start my review with the checklist that each RPG game, and Final Fantasy games in particular have to pass. Great cast ofI'm going to start my review with the checklist that each RPG game, and Final Fantasy games in particular have to pass. Great cast of characters, immersive world, engaging story, strategic combat, and a good open feeling (but in FF's case, an open yet linear guidance) with presentation. Characters- This is one of the only FF games where I can say I liked every cast member, most FF games only produce 2-4 good characters whereas FF13 only produced one...but this game everyone added their own twist to the story. However, there was one character who fell flat as compared to the others, and sad to say, in this one, it was the main character Vaan. His role in the story is rather irrelevant, especially when you compare him to characters like Cloud, Tidus, and Zidane. Don't get me wrong, his voice actor was great, and he is favorable, but as the main character, he went a little limp. Immersive world- the world of Ivalice is great, maybe not as gorgeous as some of the environments in FF10, but Ivalice is definitely a win. As far as the engaging story...well... this may be up to opinion. Whereas most FF stories are completely "out of this world," and the main characters are chosen to save the realm from one great villain, this FF title focuses more on a "down to earth" approach, for example: most plot points are more politically based with a slight mix of fantasy, whereas its usually the other way around. This may be a killer to hardcore fans, and don't get me wrong, in its essence, it's still not the greatest story Square could've came up with, but it still is deep and engaging with only a few pacing problems. Combat- the combat in the game may also be a killer to hardcore fans because of the lack of the traditional turn base combat. But in its core, it still is turn based, and the new look and feel is exactly what FF needed. However, the gambit system in the game could use some work, gambits range from malfunctioning, annoying, or too easy. Also not at its best is the license board. The license board is basically the sphere grid but with way more freedom to level up as you please. Which sounds good, but without the strategy guide, you can be leveling the completely wrong way and the game never truly gives you any guidance in this department. And to me, the biggest drawback to the combat is the lack of guidance, every weapon is different and have their perks and disadvantages to them....which is a good, but the game never actually tells you anything, and again... without the strategy guide, the overwhelming customization with the license board and armory may in the end, ruin your experience. Freedom- This game is rather linear as compared to earlier titles, but not enough to make the gamer feel "constricted," and is definitely no where near as linear as FF13. Side quests are about "half in half," half of the hunts and other side quests are fun and entertaining, whereas the other half is boring and confusing and are barely good enough to endure. In the end- FF 12 is a great game, sure it has its drawbacks and flaws, but most of them are minor and permissible. The Good: FF12 has great customization of the likes that previous FF games have never even seen, great graphics for a ps2 game, a good cast of characters, great innovation to the combat (but could still use some work), and an above average story. The Bad: FF12 never really teaches the gamer how to utilize the customization options, the main character is rather stale, half of the side quests are more than lackluster, and depending on the gamer... gambits may be best to keep off. Honestly, this is not Square's best title, you will definitely be able to distinguish between the quality of this title, and the likes of FF:6,7,9,& 10. However, this title is definitely worthy of its name and shows great innovation and promise for the future of Final Fantasy (excluding 13) Expand
  5. LeroyS.
    Jun 6, 2007
    7
    There is so much wrong with this game. The sript writers worked seperate from the the game directors.
  6. Oct 7, 2011
    5
    Let's start with a very simple sentence: this game is BORING! Let's start with the plot: even though i didn't follow all of it in 10 hours, ILet's start with a very simple sentence: this game is BORING! Let's start with the plot: even though i didn't follow all of it in 10 hours, I still really didn't get a single bit of it mainly because of the "main protagonists" being extras (literally, Vaan can be kicked out of the plot, and probably nothing would change. I think), and also for the fact that it's kinda boring in general: a good story should hook me into it, but not even my friends could understand it. Second, the gameplay: they said this is a great final fantasy due to the fact they 1) removed random encounters (surely a plus) 2) lots of subquests 3) the combat system. With the exception of the first, I gotta say that this game is more like an mmorpg...in the wrong ways, because subquests should be a part of the game, NOT the main part of the game: you'll do constantly subquests because you NEED money, and you'll just lose interest in the game because you'll need to grind!. Right, since it looks like a mmorpg, you need to farm money in order to buy everything (but you need to unlock them first...), and they really are overpriced in my opinion. All this makes this game extremely slow, boring and unappealing. And at last...the combat system. People said the gambit and the fact you could move "freely" on the battlefield was the best thing of all. Yes, you can move freely while fighting. Yes, you can use gambit to improve fighting. No, it's not action-based; it's still turn-based. This detail made me really annoyed because it was the same system used in old final fantasy, except that you had to move too in order to attack...that's where gambit comes in, letting your character be controlled by orders, so he attacks by himself...so I'm letting the game play for me now. In general, I don't understand why they had to make this system a "hybrid" when they could have just go for normal turn based (or a proper action-based), since you'll do the same thing as in the other final fantasy games or any other turn-based rpg, and yet people say this is one of the best. Don't even wanna start bragging about the fact that the 6 character are also virtually the same (they can learn the same spells, armor, skills: everything!), so I'm gonna say this: try it if you are a nostalgic, skip it if you're looking for something more fun to play. Expand
  7. EternalP.
    Jan 14, 2007
    0
    This game hurts the team. Maybe not the Square team, but you know what I mean. Wasted 25 hrs to realize the game goes nowhere and is This game hurts the team. Maybe not the Square team, but you know what I mean. Wasted 25 hrs to realize the game goes nowhere and is completely boring as hell. I could sit the controller down and have my dumb ai party beat the game for me without even leveling up. Old school rpg gamers, don't bother. Newbies to the genre (PS2 and up) and kids keep this crap going hard. Expand

See all 257 User Reviews

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