User Score
6.0

Mixed or average reviews- based on 559 Ratings

User score distribution:
Buy On

Review this game

  1. Your Score
    0 out of 10
    Rate this:
    • 10
    • 9
    • 8
    • 7
    • 6
    • 5
    • 4
    • 3
    • 2
    • 1
    • 0
    • 0
  1. Submit
  2. Check Spelling
  1. Feb 21, 2014
    10
    Not as bad as everyone says, the time limit makes you stratagies and plan, and the combat system is new and refreshing with a combination of action and active time based mechanics and done better than FF13 imo, the story is no better or worse than your typical rpg storyline {save the world, save loved ones, have moral delemas}.

    There's alot of returning characters and this time around
    Not as bad as everyone says, the time limit makes you stratagies and plan, and the combat system is new and refreshing with a combination of action and active time based mechanics and done better than FF13 imo, the story is no better or worse than your typical rpg storyline {save the world, save loved ones, have moral delemas}.

    There's alot of returning characters and this time around they are not all carebears and roses, most of them want to kill each other because they made a bargain with god to save a loved one, something alot diffrent from original 13 where everyone is annoyingly positive and cheerful about the world ending, i find lightning returns a big step up from ff13 and -2 with a dash of originality in the mix, the soundtrack is also very good as it always is, not bad at all!
    Expand
  2. Feb 18, 2014
    10
    In short, for me, 13-3 is clearly the best of the 3 games in the series and does everything better. The game is probably a 8.5~9/10 on the grand scale of things. They especially elevates the combat system (general gameplay), the possibility to explore early on and overall gives you a lot more of a "Skyrim/Dragon Age" feel to the game than before. They actually change so much compared toIn short, for me, 13-3 is clearly the best of the 3 games in the series and does everything better. The game is probably a 8.5~9/10 on the grand scale of things. They especially elevates the combat system (general gameplay), the possibility to explore early on and overall gives you a lot more of a "Skyrim/Dragon Age" feel to the game than before. They actually change so much compared to the earlier installments that many critics do judged them based off this. It will take some getting used to where for instance the combat system is closer to the Tales series than earlier Final Fantasy. It requires more responsiveness and timing (like critical guard, counterspell or counterattack) and "areas" require different setups for success. Abilities have different stages, depending on if your opponent is lifted, grounded, attacking, ricocheting off a well timed guard or other stances, where you often must combine your different armor sets for good effects (Erza Scarlet - The Video Game).

    This freedom may be a curse for young gamers though, as having to learn a game can be difficult where there is little hand holding (most must be discovered, and it can easily be bypassed (like how to make money fast and get the "correct" gear from stores, or generally level up (must go by the quest boards and harvest souls). It can also go from happy faced sunny days to dark hours in seconds, like having humors moments with joining a date for free food to suddenly turning the corner after completion to discover a hanged girl thrown off a building (killed, because you failed that quest the day before, and now must face the results). Thus this game may be more adult focused (in regards to murder mysterious, details of victims, etc.) than the previous games. The main story is not that extensive and the game could be completed in 6~16 hours, however the side quests do add to the holistic view. For old school FF veterans, one complete "decent" play through for discovering ultimate weapons and so on would be close to 80~100 hours). That said it has potential for ever lasting effects ala. Dark Souls with New Game+ and so on.

    Pro:

    -More engaging Combat system (More like the Tales Series)

    -Difficulty choice.

    -More world exploration

    -You can give the main protagonist diverse personality traits/body language based off the different armor sets

    -Engaging side quests

    -Good music

    Cons:

    -You might feel the time pressure

    -You have to learn many things yourself (pro for FF veterans).

    -Main story is not that extensive.

    - If you don't learn the combat system fast, you'd potentially lagg behind, making the game adjust the difficulty so that you can end up with a "hit 1 ability" pattern of the earlier games (each day passed gives you access to more abilities and gear, making it naturally easier for the earlier zones).

    - It may be difficult to understand what zones you are not ready for (save before engaging a new monster type (you usually have to learn their pattern behavior and will die the first time anyway)).
    Expand
  3. Feb 13, 2014
    10
    That ridiculous gametrailers review summed up it kinda well:" amounting to little more than an excuse to dress the heroine up in different outfits and beat the crap out of things." And that's great! If you want more than that go read a book. This is the best FF since X
  4. Feb 12, 2014
    10
    Ok folks...this game is not a 10 but I feel I have to counteract the others that are giving it 0. Played the game for 4-5 hours last night and I am actually enjoying it. The gameplay is fun, graphics are gorgeous and I'm having a good time. Isn't that what a game is all about? I would actually give it a solid 8 in reality. If you are a JRPG fan you should play it. If not, stay away. It's aOk folks...this game is not a 10 but I feel I have to counteract the others that are giving it 0. Played the game for 4-5 hours last night and I am actually enjoying it. The gameplay is fun, graphics are gorgeous and I'm having a good time. Isn't that what a game is all about? I would actually give it a solid 8 in reality. If you are a JRPG fan you should play it. If not, stay away. It's a game, not a movie... Expand
  5. Feb 11, 2014
    10
    The XIII series as a whole is amazing and I don't understand the unnecessary hate towards it. The story, characters, battles... everything was awesome! So far that hasn't changed in Lighting Returns either. I'm enjoying it very much so. I think a lot of people (mostly guys) are scared or just straight up pissed off by having strong female lead roles in the gaming world today. Lightning isThe XIII series as a whole is amazing and I don't understand the unnecessary hate towards it. The story, characters, battles... everything was awesome! So far that hasn't changed in Lighting Returns either. I'm enjoying it very much so. I think a lot of people (mostly guys) are scared or just straight up pissed off by having strong female lead roles in the gaming world today. Lightning is strong, independent, goal oriented, and having a female protagonist is something pretty new in the gaming scene. Only a select few females leads have made it "acceptable" by the community, such as Lara Croft. We need more of those in the gaming world and Lightning is the right role model for that! Expand
  6. Feb 14, 2014
    10
    Alot of trolls around, this game is great, and if you don't like it, okay. But is not right give zero to a game just to see the scores go down. None game deserve a 0.
  7. Feb 15, 2014
    10
    This game is so enjoable . If u know Nova crystallis mythology , u will extice for ff xv . Because they have same mythology. Gameplay is great and open world idea too . They released retro spesific trailer u dont dont u watch this but i m sure sqare enix knows what have they done...

    Anyway , i always loved ffxiii series u dont have to compare this game with old ff games. I finished old
    This game is so enjoable . If u know Nova crystallis mythology , u will extice for ff xv . Because they have same mythology. Gameplay is great and open world idea too . They released retro spesific trailer u dont dont u watch this but i m sure sqare enix knows what have they done...

    Anyway , i always loved ffxiii series u dont have to compare this game with old ff games. I finished old games too but this is different .
    Expand
  8. Feb 18, 2014
    10
    Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII introduces a slick, fast new battle system to create the most tense boss fights in the series.

    Whilst it sports a slightly lower frame rate & presentation level than XIII & XIII-2 (Probably due to the huge size & population of areas), it also brings with it amazing music, world, art, humour & story. A solid title sure to trigger nostalgia for fans
    Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII introduces a slick, fast new battle system to create the most tense boss fights in the series.

    Whilst it sports a slightly lower frame rate & presentation level than XIII & XIII-2 (Probably due to the huge size & population of areas), it also brings with it amazing music, world, art, humour & story. A solid title sure to trigger nostalgia for fans of the original.
    Expand
  9. Feb 13, 2014
    10
    This game honestly improved on just about everything in the FF XIII series and all the negative reviews are just because of the FFXIII hate bandwagon.
  10. Feb 14, 2014
    10
    Although this game may be hated by a minority who pass themselves off as a majority, this game is actually very good. I completely recommend this game.
  11. Feb 14, 2014
    10
    This is a really AMAZING game and any rpg would enjoy this unless they want to hate on it just because its a final fantasy 13 game. I am a massive rpg fan so I have played many rpg games and this has definitely been the best one I have played on the PS3.

    + Amazing graphics + Great character customization + Interesting world design + Good story and characters + Enjoyable soundtrack
    This is a really AMAZING game and any rpg would enjoy this unless they want to hate on it just because its a final fantasy 13 game. I am a massive rpg fan so I have played many rpg games and this has definitely been the best one I have played on the PS3.

    + Amazing graphics
    + Great character customization
    + Interesting world design
    + Good story and characters
    + Enjoyable soundtrack that fits the game
    + Fun and different gameplay

    -There isnt really a problem with the game except the time limit but the time limit is long enough even for people who want to explore the game and take their time

    A must buy for any rpg fan
    Expand
  12. Feb 12, 2014
    10
    it is sad that haters get on here and give the game a zero just to be jerks, no game deserves a zero....and it just makes their reviews worth zero also.
    if you are going to do such an ignorant thing, at least back up your rating with some sort of INTELLIGENT reasons.
    something besides "this sucks" would be appreciated. i gave this a 10 to try and offset all the fake hater reviews, the
    it is sad that haters get on here and give the game a zero just to be jerks, no game deserves a zero....and it just makes their reviews worth zero also.
    if you are going to do such an ignorant thing, at least back up your rating with some sort of INTELLIGENT reasons.
    something besides "this sucks" would be appreciated.
    i gave this a 10 to try and offset all the fake hater reviews, the game deserves a 7.
    please actually play this if you are going to review it.....
    Expand
  13. Feb 11, 2014
    10
    As a lover of 13 part 1 and part 2 this game really gives a strong finish to a great series. Lightning is a great character and one I will remember for a long time.
  14. Feb 11, 2014
    10
    Did the users giving it zeroes even play the game? Don't listen to these trolls. . Despite popular and retarded belief, this game is alright to play, not the best, but still very good, gameplay and story.
  15. Feb 11, 2014
    10
    +great battle system
    +interesting storyline
    +customization
    +good side quests
    +beautiful world
    +unique characters
    +high replayability

    -strange ending.
  16. Feb 11, 2014
    10
    This game has an open world, character customization, four unique expansive areas, and a fun combat system. What's not to like? Don't pay attention to those that give this game a zero. They obviously are a bunch of haters that easily overlook the positives of this game.
  17. Feb 12, 2014
    10
    The amount of misinformation surrounding this game in the western gaming press is OFF THE CHARTS.

    If you don't care about video game stories and just want a solid Action-RPG because you enjoyed Kingdom Hearts 2 and Birth by Sleep, get this game NOW. Gameplay : 8/10. Nearly instantly re-spawning enemies and separate battle screens make the gameplay not as brilliant as it could be.
    The amount of misinformation surrounding this game in the western gaming press is OFF THE CHARTS.

    If you don't care about video game stories and just want a solid Action-RPG because you enjoyed Kingdom Hearts 2 and Birth by Sleep, get this game NOW.

    Gameplay : 8/10.
    Nearly instantly re-spawning enemies and separate battle screens make the gameplay not as brilliant as it could be. The time limit is not a game breaker, if you run out of time you can start a New Game + with all your gear and stats, so grinding is very much minimised. You cannot do all the quests in one playthrough. Just play on Easy mode and focus on the main quest if you don't want to invest too much time.

    Visuals: 9/10 Super psychedelic, if a little too ornate at times.

    Audio: 10/10 Fantastic music, the best soundtrack since Skyrim.

    Narrative: I don't care about the narrative, if I want a story I'll read a book or watch a film. I don't play RPGs as if they were visual novels. I just care about gameplay mechanics, not lame stories written by people with no storytelling talents.

    This is the best Final Fantasy GAME ever made! No more triggering commands from menus! Save anywhere and teleport from anywhere. No more time wasting and grinding.
    Expand
  18. Feb 12, 2014
    10
    I'm giving a 10 score because I've seen a few reviews giving the game a zero just because they think that Final Fantasy sucks now, without having actually played the game. I have played the game. In reality it's about an 8. The battle system is worth the price of admission. The graphics are as good as anything else on current gen systems. The music is quality Final Fantasy goodnessI'm giving a 10 score because I've seen a few reviews giving the game a zero just because they think that Final Fantasy sucks now, without having actually played the game. I have played the game. In reality it's about an 8. The battle system is worth the price of admission. The graphics are as good as anything else on current gen systems. The music is quality Final Fantasy goodness (as always). The only thing that lacks in the game for me is the removal of the crystarium, which is the system from the previous two Final Fantasy XIII games that is used for leveling up/improving your character. The new system involves stat bonuses awarded for completing quests. This can seem like a big thing, until you start exploring the battle system. The battle system is highly customizable, and plays into not manually leveling your characters. You do have complete control over leveling the abilities that the character uses, which all works well with the strategy you would like to employ in battle. The story is not hard to understand by any means, but I also graduated high school over 10 years ago, and we actually used to have to read stories that required you to think. This prepared/enabled me to be able to understand complex story-lines. It's not hard to understand, but you can't be stupid, and you might have to think. If you can do that, than you may come to both realize and like that this game, and the 13 series has an intricate world. Complete with mythologies, a history, government, heroes, and all the makings for epic sci-fi fantasy. The fact that this game has AAA production values is just icing on the cake. Expand
  19. Feb 18, 2014
    10
    Easily the best of trilogy and a solid RPG in general with lots of challenge and replay value. It's a thrilling take on the action styled battle system with enough new things to keep things fresh.
  20. Feb 22, 2014
    10
    lightning returns is a good game i like the possibilities of customizing each costume plus the controls are much easier than in previous releases. :)
  21. Mar 14, 2014
    10
    Finally a reason to create a metacritic account.

    Within the first two hours of playing I was a whole of 2 times about to create a metacritic account and give it a big fat 0 on this game. I was beyond mad. First being the time-limit "COULND'T STAND IT" actually having to hurry about in a FF game. Second was the "loner approach" playing a FF game with just one character.. like FF
    Finally a reason to create a metacritic account.

    Within the first two hours of playing I was a whole of 2 times about to create a metacritic account and give it a big fat 0 on this game. I was beyond mad.

    First being the time-limit "COULND'T STAND IT" actually having to hurry about in a FF game.

    Second was the "loner approach" playing a FF game with just one character.. like FF XIII-2 weren't bad enough cutting it down to 2.

    It's hard to tell what turned it around for me. The more i played the game the more I started to appriciate what they'd done with it:

    I simply love the art, the vibrant colours, the sounds, the music and the varied and mostly beautiful costumes simply just amazing. whoever worked on that thank you, it's been a joy going through the game all 3 times (Especially Yusnaan. everything there including the mainstory part totally sucked me in).

    Then there's the re-playability value. They've made it so that you can continue to improve your character to a point where your godlike which is one of the reasons I've already been through it 3 times. The second reason that made it possible for me to bother is the 'freedom in doing whatever quest you want at any given time' you've got complete freedom to do whatever mainquest/sidequest/prayer you want to bother with. On my second playthrough I got through alot of the quests i didnt make on the first run. I Also found a good deal of new ones.

    The third reason is all the 'secret' stuff i had no clue were there (checked a guide after the first run). I wont go into details so i dont accidently bring up some spoilers.

    This game was a pleasent surprise taking that I dont really like FF XIII and XIII-2 that much (mostly because of the stale combat system).

    The less good:

    Combat system could still be better (more freedom and control of the character).

    I still don't like the solo approach. This game would seriously be close to perfect if you had a proper group like in FF XIII.

    I don't like being forced to use specific garbs because of their stats. make it possible to use whatever garb you want with whatever stats available to your character. There's some amazing looking garbs and weapons that i don't use because stats-wise they're inferior.

    Bring back summons! ~ like they were in FF VII/X :(

    One of the best games I've played since DA:O, ME and Heavy Rain destroyed gaming for me (personally havent found anything near the quality of those games ever since).
    Expand
  22. Mar 18, 2014
    10
    This game might be the best one in its series, at first I did not like it that much. The timer put so much pressure on my shoulders, the story felt thrown together like a filler. But the more i progressed through the game I learned to love the game for what it is and is not probably one of my favourite final fantasy games of all time! The combat system is so awesome in this game and itThis game might be the best one in its series, at first I did not like it that much. The timer put so much pressure on my shoulders, the story felt thrown together like a filler. But the more i progressed through the game I learned to love the game for what it is and is not probably one of my favourite final fantasy games of all time! The combat system is so awesome in this game and it would be a shame to see the 13 fans miss a copy of this game if they feel like "FF13-2 ending was so lame they just want my money for a 3rd game" Its really worth it, don`t listen to the people who gives this score a 0 they understand nothing about change and they expect everything to be the same stuff over and over. This is bringing a fresh new game-play to the rpg scene which i spent hours,days heck even weeks trying to fit the perfect combinations together and crack the code for this beautiful and advanced combat system. Expand
  23. Jun 19, 2014
    10
    +Amazing Battle System
    +Beautiful Soundtrack
    +Interesting Story
    +Fun Exploration

    -Graphics are a little unpolished at times
    -Couple of Framerate Dips
  24. Aug 13, 2014
    10
    Many people like to try and knock a company from the top spot and Square unfortunately have become victim to this. This game has a great battle system, beautiful soundtrack, and unique story and premise, hopefully this will be a cult classic in years to come.
  25. Nov 8, 2014
    10
    I would call this game the best in the FFXIII series, the development team gave this game a complete sense of freedom there is no linearity to the game in any aspect you can choose to do things your way, customize lightning your way and basically play the game in any way youll want to. I highly recommend this game to all RPG fans you'll find yourself not able to put the controller down.
  26. Jan 28, 2015
    10
    I found the XIII series as an amazingly good trilogy and I honestly don't understand how people could hate it, I can't get enough of this trilogy I give 10/10.
  27. Oct 29, 2015
    10
    First time I've ever written a review, but I'll try and be as explanative as possible. To me, Final Fantasy: Lightning Returns was a very entertaining game. I've always been enraptured by the series beauty and storyline. And as from my rating of the game, I've a hefty list of pros, as well as a lacking list of cons. Of course the series is beautiful and I personally enjoyed the storyline.First time I've ever written a review, but I'll try and be as explanative as possible. To me, Final Fantasy: Lightning Returns was a very entertaining game. I've always been enraptured by the series beauty and storyline. And as from my rating of the game, I've a hefty list of pros, as well as a lacking list of cons. Of course the series is beautiful and I personally enjoyed the storyline. I like the music, battle system, cultural diversity, and the standard gameplay/progression. I was pleasantly surprised by the abandonment of the level up system, and once I understood and grasped the mission reward system, and its replacement. As a whole, I reckon you could say I loved the entire game. Now as to the cons. Initially I felt that the time limit was going to be a problem, beginning the game on Normal mode and began grinding out the story and missions at a fast pace. I was able to adapt to the new gameplay quickly and eventually found myself done with the main quests and a large portion of side quests after the first seven days. I can't really list the time limit as a fault as it really is only there in appearance and offers no real penalty for normal gameplay. Then you get to Lightning herself as a character. Admittedly she is monotonous and as a character seems simple. But I always go back to her original persona. She is a soldier, who hasn't been allowed to depend on others, who's had to support her sister. Seems legit. I personally don't look for Character Development in video games with adult protagonists, as they are adults. Most adults are set in their ways and are unlikely to change. Even going through harrowing experiences change most adults in minor ways. Trauma is really the only exception. Adding to the fact that Lightning is a soldier, I expected insubstantial growth from her at the beginning. After my first playthrough, I was done with Hope's nagging. He really wont shut his face. I understand if you load a save file, its nice knowing Hope's gonna chime in soon telling you what your doing, but he's still annoying. The running tying into your ATB guage thing was weird. I had no problems with the camera, be that thanks to a patch (doubtfully) or whatever. I was mildly disappointed with some of the portrayals of the returning cast, but its not my story/life, its theirs. Still liked to see the old faces. All in all, I thought it was a great game. Maybe this game was simply my cup of tea, whereas it wasn't to others. I'd still encourage anyone to play it. Many of my friends do and they enjoy it as well. Expand
  28. Jan 13, 2016
    10
    Solid gameplay, good story and voice acting, polished, and high replay value! I can understand why some players are turned off but the whole time system, but honestly it's easy to get a hang of. You'll put in 100 hours before you know it, definitely an under-scored title!
  29. Mar 25, 2017
    10
    The best FF ever. It has an open world, similar to FF15, which contains many sub missions that make the world looks more real and completed. In FF15, you are thrown to a huge world where you don't know what to do. However, in LR-FF13, the world is shown to you step by step, in a more friendly way. At first, you can only travel by trains. Then, you could travel by wrap points. At last, youThe best FF ever. It has an open world, similar to FF15, which contains many sub missions that make the world looks more real and completed. In FF15, you are thrown to a huge world where you don't know what to do. However, in LR-FF13, the world is shown to you step by step, in a more friendly way. At first, you can only travel by trains. Then, you could travel by wrap points. At last, you could travel between cities by walking via wild roads. The time limit is also something new. I know it's annoying, but it makes this story to make more sense, because the world is going to end, and you don't want to feel like Noctis of FF15, who should obviously do everything in a hurry but he actually didn't. Time limit in a ending world is reasonable, no matter whether it is an open world or not. Expand
  30. Feb 15, 2014
    9
    Chocobos - Check
    Moogles - Check
    Open World - Check Epic music - Check Epic boss battle - Check "Omega" enemies - Check In-depth and thought out combat system - check All ties wrapped up by the end of the game - check Every stat somehow involving 9's - Check Wont give this game a 10 because the side quests are annoying. Not sure why this gets mediocre reviews when this game is
    Chocobos - Check
    Moogles - Check
    Open World - Check
    Epic music - Check
    Epic boss battle - Check
    "Omega" enemies - Check
    In-depth and thought out combat system - check
    All ties wrapped up by the end of the game - check
    Every stat somehow involving 9's - Check

    Wont give this game a 10 because the side quests are annoying. Not sure why this gets mediocre reviews when this game is the epitome of the Final Fantasy franchise. Hell, the boss fight is a high definition Sephiroth.

    Oh and the time limit makes zero difference to this game, you -can't- run out of time so long as you're actually completing the main and side quests.
    Expand
  31. Mar 8, 2014
    9
    Lightning returns is a game that cannot be defined in a single genre.
    It is definitelya final fantasy, but the gameplay is so unique that can't be easily described or categorized.
    We play again as Lightning, the only playable character this time, but this doesn't make the game any limitative, instead this is the most fun and rewarding battle style I've ever played on any final fantasy.
    Lightning returns is a game that cannot be defined in a single genre.
    It is definitelya final fantasy, but the gameplay is so unique that can't be easily described or categorized.
    We play again as Lightning, the only playable character this time, but this doesn't make the game any limitative, instead this is the most fun and rewarding battle style I've ever played on any final fantasy.
    The story is hit or miss, if you liked the previous games you would probably like this too, just to know what is going to happen next.
    What I discovered in my playthrough is that every corner, event, has a surprise or something that makes you glad to have played this game.
    The amount of content is incredible, there is a lot to do and everything is extremely rewarding.
    My advice is to try the demo, or borrow it before purchase, you will discover a gem that has been unfairly obstracized.
    Expand
  32. Apr 17, 2014
    9
    I was actually quite hyped for this game because of some features like the action oriented combat and the "end of the world" timer but most of the games I hype up usually end up as **** on my list. NOT THIS ONE.

    Lightning Returns was actually refreshingly different. It had a fair amount of dialogue and the story is simple enough to be understood. The world is quite nice even if there
    I was actually quite hyped for this game because of some features like the action oriented combat and the "end of the world" timer but most of the games I hype up usually end up as **** on my list. NOT THIS ONE.

    Lightning Returns was actually refreshingly different. It had a fair amount of dialogue and the story is simple enough to be understood. The world is quite nice even if there are only 4 areas to explore (Luxerion,Yusnaan, Wildlands and Dead Dunes). Yusnaan and Luxerion had nice areas to explore and you could easily get lost in them if you don't use the map. Wildlands and Dead Dunes were fairly large in comparison to the previous 2 and they contain some incredible monsters in them.
    Expand
  33. Mar 4, 2014
    9
    I love this game! I am so happy that I followed my instinct on this one and did not fall for the percentage score. I am completely hooked and cannot believe how much I am into this game, as I am disillusioned with games in general and even the supposedly "greatest" games are boring and unfulfilling to me. I am actually excited to go home and play this. It may be a little intimidating atI love this game! I am so happy that I followed my instinct on this one and did not fall for the percentage score. I am completely hooked and cannot believe how much I am into this game, as I am disillusioned with games in general and even the supposedly "greatest" games are boring and unfulfilling to me. I am actually excited to go home and play this. It may be a little intimidating at first, it is a hardcore game but you will understand it more as you go. You have to kill enemies so that you can freeze time. I love how monsters can become extinct. I haven't even played the other FFXIII games and I don't need them to understand what is going on. It feels kind of mysterious this way. I am playing a game, I don't really need to know all the story details. I am baffled at the negativity being thrown at this game, similar to the ignorant misunderstandings towards the innovations of the masterful works of genius Final Fantasy VIII and XII. It is definitely as good or better than Bravely Default, which I love. For me it is much more entertaining and rewarding as higher rated games such as Last of Us, Grand Theft Auto IV and V, Uncharted, Bioshock, Mass Effect, Assassins Creed, Halo, Call of Duty, Infamous, Battlefield, Fallout 3, Dragon Age, Ni no Kuni, Heavy Rain, LA Noire, Diablo III, Monster Hunter, etc as well as all the forgotten loads of garbage people are tricked into playing by these reviewers who are lying to us. For a game, I create the emotional connection, not necessarily because the game is trying to force me to feel that way. The ending of A Link Between Worlds made me tear up a little, and it wasn't even trying. I want a video game, not an interactive movie, there are no quick time events here. It is best to play on easy mode the first time. I have a friend who is playing it for the fourth time. Believe it. Try this game for yourself and make your own opinion, don't make the assumption that these reviewers actually know how to play games or even like games or know anything about music or art or any other form of entertainment. If you like Persona, Final Fantasy XII, Tekken, Street Fighter, Blaz Blue, Bayonetta or Dark Souls/ Demon Souls you will know what I am talking about. They review this like they are talking about a TV show or music. Lighting Returns has fantastic music by the way. Expand
  34. Feb 17, 2014
    9
    this is the final part of the XIII series, and a huge improvement over XIII-2. the gameplay has been altered, having a more action-y feel to it, which is surprisingly fun. more fun than the atb system used previously. you go into battle, with lightning as your lone character. you'll have several costumes to choose from during battle, which grant different effects, depending on what youthis is the final part of the XIII series, and a huge improvement over XIII-2. the gameplay has been altered, having a more action-y feel to it, which is surprisingly fun. more fun than the atb system used previously. you go into battle, with lightning as your lone character. you'll have several costumes to choose from during battle, which grant different effects, depending on what you chose.the music is great, and the graphics are once again, beautiful. the characters for the most part do a nice job, but the overall story, isn't as good as it could've been, especially the ending. despite that this is a very well done game. Expand
  35. Feb 23, 2016
    9
    In a world where companies are too piss pants scared to try something different, this game feels like a breath of fresh air. I have grown to love Lightning more as a character and the closer I wanted in the series. This is my favorite in the trilogy and I continue to play it. I have over 100 hours in the game and I still enjoy playing it.
  36. Mar 3, 2014
    9
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Very interesting and well made game. I would have given it an 8 and a half but cannot.

    +Opening Cinematic is insanely awesome
    +Music
    +Gameplay
    +Setting
    +Story (Most of it)
    +Characters

    -Side Quests felt dull
    -Lightning is a bit sadistic

    I would like to give a special mention to the setting of the game. Nova Crystallia is one of the best settings in a JRPG since Xenoblade in my opinion. The four locations feel like a hybrid of places shown below:

    Yusnaan: Traverse Town (Kingdom Hearts) Florence, Italy (Assassins Creed II)
    Wildlands: God of War, Hyrule Field (Zelda), Ico, Xenoblade
    Dead Dunes: Journey, Tomb Raider
    Luxerion: Dark Souls, Batman: Arkham City, Midgar (FFVII)

    Last thing I would like to say is about the ending. Putting them on earth is insanely bizarre but it made me think about a lot as who we are.
    Expand
  37. Feb 11, 2014
    9
    The game is pretty good actually. I played the demo and loved the battle system. The actual game didn't disappoint at all. Also the cinematic and music is amazing which is expected of SE. The only part where I didn't like the thing was everything is time limited. It kinda annoys me. Some people are bashing the new battle system for not being like the previous(turn based) which is prettyThe game is pretty good actually. I played the demo and loved the battle system. The actual game didn't disappoint at all. Also the cinematic and music is amazing which is expected of SE. The only part where I didn't like the thing was everything is time limited. It kinda annoys me. Some people are bashing the new battle system for not being like the previous(turn based) which is pretty hypo-critic. And talking about plot holes Hey which FF game hasn't had it Expand
  38. Feb 11, 2014
    9
    There are many out there that seem to not enjoy this game; I have doubts that they enjoyed the FF XIII series as a whole. Me on the other hand, I found this game to be quite a bit of fun. Let's look at three things: Battle System, Presentation, and Story.

    Battle System: I found Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII's battle system, the Style-Change Active Time Battle system, to be a
    There are many out there that seem to not enjoy this game; I have doubts that they enjoyed the FF XIII series as a whole. Me on the other hand, I found this game to be quite a bit of fun. Let's look at three things: Battle System, Presentation, and Story.

    Battle System: I found Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII's battle system, the Style-Change Active Time Battle system, to be a huge improvement over it's two predecessors. It's a lot more action based, and a lot more engaging, which was something missing from the other two games in the trilogy. I like how the player can customize his/her's attacks to their liking, as well as the constant changing of styles to suit a variety of different situations. It's different from the "Final Fantasy style," but change isn't necessarily bad, and in this case, it really isn't.

    Presentation: For a PS3/Xbox 360 game, the presentation is great. The graphics are, for the most part, clean and nice, but could use a little polishing here and there, especially in the towns. The open world is pretty large and good; it removes some of the linearity and gives the player the option to explore, something the two other games in the triology lacked; however, there is a slight problem that interferes with the exploration, and that will be covered next, in the Story section.

    Story: The Final Fantasy XIII triology is said by many to have a lackluster story, and in the case of the last game, it's not that amazing. Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII takes place 500 years after the events of Final Fantasy XIII-2. Lightning is awoken by the god Bhunivelze 13 days before the end of the world; it is Lightning's job to save the world. Interesting concept, but again, nothing amazing. My main gripe with this game is the fact that this whole "13 days before the end of the world," debacle plays a huge role in the game. The player has a time limit of 13 days to do the main quests and any side quest of his/her choosing. It's a little annoying because it effectively forces the player to focus a good amount of their time worrying about the time limit, instead of exploring the open world or completely all the side quests.

    All in all, Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is a great game that really should not be overlooked. It's not a masterpiece, but it definitely shows Square Enix's great RPG prowess and their willingness to innovate. I would recommend this game to any RPG fan in a heart beat.

    Pros: Great battle system, pretty good graphics, open world, ability to customize character
    Cons: Weird story, story is intrusive to the game
    Expand
  39. Feb 12, 2014
    9
    A lot of people seem to be complaining about the story which yes doesn't make sense. But everything else in the game is so perfect its pretty crazy. You are given so much freedom on how you want to tackle quests and even the main story. I simply had a blast with this game and feel like its getting bad reviews for a reason that doesn't matter that much. It is a game after all not aA lot of people seem to be complaining about the story which yes doesn't make sense. But everything else in the game is so perfect its pretty crazy. You are given so much freedom on how you want to tackle quests and even the main story. I simply had a blast with this game and feel like its getting bad reviews for a reason that doesn't matter that much. It is a game after all not a movie. The story is secondary and the gameplay is primary. Expand
  40. Feb 12, 2014
    9
    Well, at least it's something different and new, right? And it's alot more better than FF XIV (PC).
    What's wrong with all the negative reviews? I found many 0s. No game deserve a 0.
    You need to think straight, 0 is the point we give to something that has no shred of value at all, yeah, AT ALL. No matter what those people said, I will always support the Final Fantasy franchise like I'm
    Well, at least it's something different and new, right? And it's alot more better than FF XIV (PC).
    What's wrong with all the negative reviews? I found many 0s. No game deserve a 0.
    You need to think straight, 0 is the point we give to something that has no shred of value at all, yeah, AT ALL.

    No matter what those people said, I will always support the Final Fantasy franchise like I'm still supporting the Resident Evil franchise despite all the hate.
    I don't want them to be dead and if they did, I'll revive them with all of my support.
    I know Square Enix can do better tho. So, don't let me down in the future. SE.

    SHOUT OUT TO ALL OF FF FANS OUT THERE!
    Expand
  41. Feb 13, 2014
    9
    A good game, its like a new baseball glove, takes some time to break in. There's a lot to take in at the start, new combat system and the fact the world is ending and the in-game clock is quick to countdown. This can lead you into a stir of panic of you being used to having all the time in the world to sink into sidequests from previous installments, but there is a neat way to stop time inA good game, its like a new baseball glove, takes some time to break in. There's a lot to take in at the start, new combat system and the fact the world is ending and the in-game clock is quick to countdown. This can lead you into a stir of panic of you being used to having all the time in the world to sink into sidequests from previous installments, but there is a neat way to stop time in the game and using it to the max is how to manage the countdown to doom.

    The battle system is very fresh and has some old feel to previous 13 series, you still have an ATB bar, if you didn't manual input your actions from previous FF and just let them fill you will be dissapointed here in FF:LR as you must input your commands, but this is where the battle system comes into being fresh and fun and at the same time complex. Square seems to be in transition with Final Fantasy's becoming more real time action, so your enemies in FF:LR are never paused as you look through commands in past Final Fantasy's..you debate whether to attack or use fire your enemy might just be unleashing a attack upon you and then you have to decide if you need to guard as well then which is a new feature in FF:LR, you've had mediguard in past 13 series, but here in FF:LR there are several guard types, but you must execute them yourself with your own timing in accordance to your enemy, alot like how you would switch to Turtle paradigm before Ultima to absorb damage. The Battle system keeps you on your feet, constant action and decisions to make between management of your ATB bars and the enemy actions. The boss battles in this game are tougher to just brute force win, all take strategy, which is a good direction for the series, for to long have you been able to out level the game and just brute force a epic boss, it feels more epic when my health bar is flashing red and I have to decide if I should stagger the enemy and all out or take a recovery path and try and rebuild my health while gathering stagger again, the game requires strategy in its fights and that's enjoyable to have to actually think while fighting.

    The graphics are a tad blotchy and jagged for a game coming out at a systems life end. CG scenes are beautiful, but while in the traverse world there are many examples to be seen of jagged edge and pixel box. Also its noticeable how Lightning recieved alot of care to her appearance and npc's did not and look rather bland when your in a conversation with them and have Light standing next to them.

    The music is splendid, like pretty much every Final Fantasy there is, one can not complain.

    The story is odd, cheesy, different, complicated, hard to follow. It is good but at the same time its hard to tell the story of the world is ending and you are the chosen one to save it so many times and keep it fresh. This is FF13 after all and there's been plenty of FF before it telling a story a long those lines.

    In the end I give it a 9/10. Not perfect but not horrible. Square is changing the franchise and you can embrace it and have fun or move on. The battle system is strategic, the panic of the doomsday clock is fun to manage your time wisely. The saga you started back in 2009 comes to a close and its satisfying to meet past characters in your farewell game. The game has a feature of New game + and the game is definitely built around you playing again, via stat progression, spell progression and the general that the game is chaos and your second time through you will find quests you didn't before and you have to play again to unlock Hard mode and get the best gear. Happy time management, and good luck saving the world.
    Expand
  42. Feb 18, 2014
    9
    The design choices made in Lightning Returns are interesting and well executed. The fact that grinding monsters no longer nets exp or levels changes the way you approach this novel RPG.

    Although the narrative is still as convoluted as the previous XIII games, the gameplay elements really help you get drawn into the story. How can we make players care about saving the souls of random
    The design choices made in Lightning Returns are interesting and well executed. The fact that grinding monsters no longer nets exp or levels changes the way you approach this novel RPG.

    Although the narrative is still as convoluted as the previous XIII games, the gameplay elements really help you get drawn into the story.

    How can we make players care about saving the souls of random people, with their petty desires and melodramatic last regrets? By making it so that completing quests is the only way to strengthen your character.

    How can we give a sense of the world ending, and getting overrun by chaos? By giving the players more time in the world by killing enemies. Every random encounter is Lightning literally pushing back the end of the world. Those monsters also get stronger as time marches on, and you're constantly reminded of the time ticking away on the right side of the screen.

    This game also addresses the biggest complain of the original XIII. Right after the opening tutorial quests, the player is given a great deal of freedom in what quests to tackle next. Although plenty of those quests are essentially fetch quests, you'll be gathering most of what you need by simply exploring this open world, killing monsters as you go to hold back the unrelenting march of time. Additionally, most of the quests are completely optional. The most interesting thing about this open world, quests=levels system is that the rewards are closely tied to emotional impact or sense of accomplishment of that quest. If someone asks you to collect 10 X's for basically no reason at all, that quest is going to be worth practically nothing. Avenging the children of a man pushed into alcoholism in his grief may take a bit more effort, but the reward is fitting.

    The combat is much more satisfying than the previous XIII games. For me, it's a neverending struggle to hit perfect timings, and constantly failing to do so. Hitting a guard just before an attack hit tends to completely nullify all damage, and needs to be mastered immediately, for the sake of your wallet. Timing the blocks in a multi-hit combo is the key to success. Hitting an attack with perfect timing seems to net an extra 10% damage. Switching between different attacks will prevent the final move in a combo (the last hit deals extra damage, but has a much longer cooldown). Switching between magic and physical attacks will aid in managing your spacing, and you can even dodge certain attacks this way. Against some enemies, the easiest way to victory is to cheese juggling or "recoil" inducing moves. Most importantly, knowing your opponent's techniques and squeezing in the maximum number of hits before perfect guarding is critical to clearing large monsters quickly. It feels almost like darksouls or megaman in this regard.

    The "dress-up simulator" aspect of this game appears to be strongly dividing. Personally, I like it and I do enjoy matching my outfits with accessories, and coloring everything to match the environment. Much of that is optional, and I have sacrificed some combat strength to complete a look. I think that this element shows that the game could have done with a bit more polish, as many accessories will float off the character, and your sword will cut straight through most hats and parts of your dress. Which reminds me: Graphically, this game is not very impressive overall. I don't mind very much, but it's pretty obvious. During conversations, you'll often find the camera stuck behind a tree or a bush or something, and think "they really didn't put that much effort into that piece of grass..."

    Regarding Outerworld Services: You do not lose the item that you send via Outerworld Services, nor receive any gil if someone else buys it. A few kind people sent ethers before I was strong enough to take on big monsters to build up meter. If you're having trouble with the time limit, you should seek out the stronger monsters that net 2 EP. Remember: you're fighting to keep this world together, just a little bit longer. Also, people that heavily criticize the time limit need to get better at playing games. Introducing a time limit is also not really that new of a mechanic. Old school Prince of Persia comes to mind, as well as the Atelier games.

    To talk briefly about the soundtrack and audio effects: It's great and does an amazing job of filling out the setting and atmosphere. Zones will have different night vs day tracks, which matches well with the visual changes and monster types/frequencies. You could never confuse the calm desert nights with the lively party atmosphere of Yuusan. Another great touch is the various audio effects of the world around you. Forest mushrooms emit an eerie hum that matches with their florescent glow. Sliding down the sand dunes looks and sounds great. Various bards sing over the town track as you pass them.

    I think that the selling point is the open world and that the gameplay elements very strongly tie in with the setting.
    Expand
  43. Feb 18, 2014
    9
    Personally I've love the XIII series, due to i love the story, and the characters. People in AMERICA seem not to like it a lot, but they flip the bird to the international community who seem to really really love the series. I'm with the International crowd on XIII, XIII-2, and now since it's out, Lightning Returns. Contrary to IGN and Game-informer, i feel this game deserves an 8.5-9 inPersonally I've love the XIII series, due to i love the story, and the characters. People in AMERICA seem not to like it a lot, but they flip the bird to the international community who seem to really really love the series. I'm with the International crowd on XIII, XIII-2, and now since it's out, Lightning Returns. Contrary to IGN and Game-informer, i feel this game deserves an 8.5-9 in terms of score. The graphics are about equal, maybe a little better in places, a little less in others, but at the end of a console generation, for a cross-platform game, that's to be expected. The story is actually easy to understand if you would take the time to listen, but we American's seem to not want to. The combat is the most fluid out of the 3, and I'm glad were now seeing a faster paced combat system with the real time battle system. Each game is different, VII was a different one from VI, which was in turn different from V and VIII. We need to face it, America is NOT the end all, be all in video games, and Square will do what the WORLD WIDE AUDIENCE wants, not just one country. And I'm with the world wide audience in that the XIII series, and Lightning Returns itself is a success, and I'm glad to see the series end on a high note like LRFFXIII. Expand
  44. Feb 20, 2014
    9
    I'm a long time FF fan, and this entry is great. I've seen some people complaining about the characters having changed from the first installment, but really... who wouldn't after 500 years. Love the new battle system (though can take a bit to master), and the game does really well at giving a sense of urgency as the world ends. Overall, really impressed.
  45. Feb 20, 2014
    9
    I am shocked by the negative attention this game has gotten by critics and users alike. The criticism is unfair and is in stark contrast to the reality that this is an extremely high-quality and unique game. It is fresh, challenging, fun, and rewarding. If you can suspend judgment and genre-related expectations long enough and allow yourself to appreciate the brilliant andI am shocked by the negative attention this game has gotten by critics and users alike. The criticism is unfair and is in stark contrast to the reality that this is an extremely high-quality and unique game. It is fresh, challenging, fun, and rewarding. If you can suspend judgment and genre-related expectations long enough and allow yourself to appreciate the brilliant and out-of-the-ordinary experience that was intended then you are in for a weird and exceptional ride.

    I am a frequent user of metacritic. I use it to check video game ratings. I have never before reviewed a game, nor did I have an account until I decided to write this review. I am writing this because I feel like my experience is so different from what even mainstream critics are reporting that I want to weigh in, and because it is troubling to me that this bold and innovative approach to the classic RPG genre could be stifled by all of this negative attention.

    I like Final Fantasy games but I am not an obsessed fan. I also like Western RPGs and action games. I think that Mass Effect 3 and The Last of Us were masterpieces. There were a lot of things that I did not enjoy about Final Fantasy XIII and I agree with a lot of the criticism directed at that game. My point is that I can assess the quality of this game in a fair and balanced way; my enjoyment of this game is not "dependent entirely on my dedication to the brand," as one particularly misinformed review by thetelegram.com put it. That review was full of over-reaching negative generalizations about the game, but the author was not even familiar enough with the gameplay to keep from mixing up "ATB" with "EP" when discussing battle mechanics. This is one of several extreme and poorly-supported reviews that I have read, incredulously.

    The backlash from the gaming community is so incredible to me that I wonder if there is some explanation that has nothing to do with the gaming experience. Are some of the unconventional religious themes too much for Western society to handle? Is it that the game is too challenging and people are rejecting it because it does not validate those of us who have grown complacent playing games that reward inevitable success? If anyone has any other plausible social or political explanation for the controversy, I am interested to hear it.

    I will not elaborate on the virtues of the game because there are reviews out there that already do a great job (I strongly recommend the Inside Gaming Daily review which describes some of my impressions). The point of my review is to let anyone curious about the game know that they should not be deterred by the low critic and user scores on metacritic, or the poor reviews. This game has its weaknesses and in particular the steep learning curve at the beginning can be frustrating, but it finds its rhythm after a few hours and for me quickly became one of the most unique and rewarding gaming experiences that I have ever had.
    Expand
  46. Feb 23, 2014
    9
    I love the combat system, and those individuals that enjoy tweaking stats or strategies to really crush your enemies will be overjoyed. Keeps all of the good stuff from the original games, but gets rid of a lot of the bad.

    Good replay-ability too - lots of stuff to do after you've beaten the game. Very challenging gameplay - even on easy difficulty!

    (From an RPG-aholic)
  47. Mar 4, 2014
    9
    I'm not gonna go back comparing this game with the predecessors on PS1 or on PS2 because it is what it is, i just enjoy this game and it gives me a lot of excitement with fresh and intuitive gameplay.
  48. Mar 6, 2014
    9
    I received the game on release day, and wasn't influenced by any reviews. I wasn't a huge fan of the past two games (XIII and XIII-2) but I decided I would judge this game on it's own merits. I would agree that the story is a bit confusing, but I didn't think it was the hindrance others have made it out to be. Where this game shines is the battle system, which ranks as one the best ofI received the game on release day, and wasn't influenced by any reviews. I wasn't a huge fan of the past two games (XIII and XIII-2) but I decided I would judge this game on it's own merits. I would agree that the story is a bit confusing, but I didn't think it was the hindrance others have made it out to be. Where this game shines is the battle system, which ranks as one the best of any Final Fantasy game. Real time with variety and massive amounts of customization, makes the battles real enjoyable. The difficulty on of the boss fights surpasses many of the final fantasies and the fact that you have one character and few ways to heal flipped the script on the standard final fantasy. It's also a lot of fun and fresh to play New game +; it's awesome to start the game over with most of your gear and to smoke through all the things that battles that were tough earlier. I thought the graphics and the pacing of the game were exciting; the time limit is really only a hindrance if you make it. For example, I played probably 14 hours on ONE game day since you can use the EP ability Chronostasis (stop time). The cities were decently intricate and the soundtrack was solid and varied. Overall I give this game a 9, with only the story minorly detracting from one of the technically (graphics, battlesystem, soundtrack) superior Final Fantasies. Expand
  49. Jun 22, 2014
    9
    88/100: A great third part of FINAL FANTASY XIII has been made by Square Enix. The battle system is very different to the other Final Fantasy games but although they made it different, it worked out really well. Also they time limit of 13 hours to save the world in this game makes the game very special and especially because it's an RPG it's very special. The characters are great and the88/100: A great third part of FINAL FANTASY XIII has been made by Square Enix. The battle system is very different to the other Final Fantasy games but although they made it different, it worked out really well. Also they time limit of 13 hours to save the world in this game makes the game very special and especially because it's an RPG it's very special. The characters are great and the story is pretty entertaining. Overall a very good Final Fantasy game! Expand
  50. Jan 15, 2016
    9
    So this game is amazing, there maybe some small tweaks overall though i loved it. I actually would enjoy it if they made more games similar to this one. One thing i truly wish was in the game was the ability to play as any of the characters in their own individual story proceeding up to the end of time and based off of what you did and how much of an impact you left in the world would beSo this game is amazing, there maybe some small tweaks overall though i loved it. I actually would enjoy it if they made more games similar to this one. One thing i truly wish was in the game was the ability to play as any of the characters in their own individual story proceeding up to the end of time and based off of what you did and how much of an impact you left in the world would be what lets you know if you saved the world. The outfit concept was awesome, because there are so many final fantasy games where you put on armor and nothing changes, and i always wished final fantasy had that. i know a lot of people had problems with the timer and i understand that. I enjoyed the timer concept, i just hated doing the same boring missions every time i started new game mode just so that i could make it to the end. I wish that they added in the ability to raise your Eradia, even in tiny amounts through battling instead of only missions. the story was bad it was all over the place, still though it was pretty awesome. I think now they need to make a modern version of final fantasy implementing the job system again. Expand
  51. Mar 30, 2017
    9
    Достаточно хорошое окончание серии 13-той Финалки. Игра в отличии от других частей делает уклон в экшен добавляя в механику таймер который заставляет игрока продумывать план действий на перёд и активно двигаться по не самом сильном сюжету. В боевой системе управление доступно только за Лайтинг (в некоторых случаях в партию дают помощников, но это единичные случаи), система уменийДостаточно хорошое окончание серии 13-той Финалки. Игра в отличии от других частей делает уклон в экшен добавляя в механику таймер который заставляет игрока продумывать план действий на перёд и активно двигаться по не самом сильном сюжету. В боевой системе управление доступно только за Лайтинг (в некоторых случаях в партию дают помощников, но это единичные случаи), система умений перенесена с персонажей на костюмы с помощью которых можно комбинировать разные приёмы. Так же боевая система стала ещо более активная и зрелищная, что в общем учитывая современные реалии скорее преимущество чем недостаток, хотя чистокровным слешером игра не стала. Основной сюжетный квест не особо оригинальный и упорно продвигает одну тему "дружба спасёт мир" что впрочем не смотря на свою наивность смотрится достаточно мило, есть несколько неплохих сюжетных поворотов, а также большое количество сайд-квестов от банального найди/собери/убей до вполне интересных детективных историй. Графика и стиль игры не равномерные, чувствуется "бюджетность игры": основные персонажи и монстры проработанные значительно лучше чем простые боты разнообразие которых создаётся комбинацией разных типов одежды, аксессуаров и причёсок, но особым недостатком не являются, если воспринимать игру на уровне игр поколения ПС3, также в игре реализован псевдо-открытий мир в виде четырёх больших локаций исследования. Музыкальное оформление игры выдержано на достаточно высоком уровне как в плане музыки (особенно музыканты в поселениях), так и внутриигровых звуков и озвучки персонажей.
    В общем игра получилась достаточно добротным представителем JRPG с элементами ARPG.
    Expand
  52. Mar 7, 2014
    8
    At least there was a conclusion, even if it was somewhat confusing.

    I have two major qualms: (1) The ever-impending sense of being rushed for time (24 -- or is it 26 -- hours before you're 'swept' away). I enjoy playing RPGs at a leisurely pace. Put differently, I don't like running from A to B only to feel like I have pause the game as quickly as possible so I'm able to decide my
    At least there was a conclusion, even if it was somewhat confusing.

    I have two major qualms: (1) The ever-impending sense of being rushed for time (24 -- or is it 26 -- hours before you're 'swept' away). I enjoy playing RPGs at a leisurely pace. Put differently, I don't like running from A to B only to feel like I have pause the game as quickly as possible so I'm able to decide my next step without wasting precious seconds/minutes. (2) The lack of enemy diversity -- 40 or so -- and some were 'upgraded' versions of earlier enemies (e.g., niblet to goblot and earth eater to chocobo eater).

    With that said, FFXII:LR has amazing graphics and above average plot. I enjoy it when a story actually concludes, rather than leaving unanswered questions, even if I don't particularly like the ending. Further, the new 'schemata' fighting system allows endless tinkering, which filled the void left by the lack of grinding I'm accustomed too. I just wish you actually fought more. If the best feature in the game is fighting, it should be the centerpiece and not something you try to avoid. Otherwise, the 'schemata' is just an excuse for this 29 year old boy/man to play dress up with virtual dolls.
    Expand
  53. Feb 16, 2014
    8
    LR's progression system is as unique as unforgiving : the end of the world happens in 6 days, and Lightning has to free as many souls as she can before the apocalypse to send those in the world that will be created after. Yep, that's 6 and not 13. When starting the game, you have only 6 days. But after you accomplish a certain number of quests (main or secondary), a day will be added afterLR's progression system is as unique as unforgiving : the end of the world happens in 6 days, and Lightning has to free as many souls as she can before the apocalypse to send those in the world that will be created after. Yep, that's 6 and not 13. When starting the game, you have only 6 days. But after you accomplish a certain number of quests (main or secondary), a day will be added after the current one.

    The system is really disturbing at first, because you naturally want concrete results, which is impossible because the main objectives (and numerous secondary objectives) are achieved in the long term ( 2 or 3 days for a main quest for example). In Lightning, you have to think completely out of the box : it is no longer level 1 → boss 1 → level 2 etc. Trains take you whenever you want as soon as you arrive on town. You can start Luxerio's main quest from 10 pm to midnight, taking on Yanusaan's for the rest of the night, and resume Luxerio's the following morning while completing sidequests when under way. You are totally free, not to say left on your own.

    Quests are extremely demanding in terms of search. You have very little help from the game, you are no longer guided like in the previous episodes. Lighting Returns thus avoids this questionable tendancy modern games have to put you on rails. And believe me, that feels extremely good, because nothing is more satisfying than achieving something with your own efforts. You'll also need a rock-solid organisation, because every single quest depends on the time of the day. You will infiltrate a palace at 6 pm, chase Noel from 0 to 6 am, be at the chemist's by 5 pm, etc. Lightning Returns's largest aspect is therefore time management. Like in an Atelier game but in REAL TIME : you have to think fast. The four environments are dense and quite large : cities are full of little secrets and wild areas are so huge that it's easy to get lost. Quests are extremely varied : many will involve hunting monsters, but in numerous occasions you will be asked to to accomplish weird tasks like a race into town, checking clocks, healing a chocobo, trying medicine... In short, the game feels as rich as Xenoblade, maybe even more.

    From a technical point of view, the 3D engine is clrealy getting a little old 4 years after FFXIII. Textures are not as good as in FFXIII-2, aliasing is rife, but the level of details turned out to be satisfying. The general design is original and fascinating. The architecture is crazy and impressive, the night atmosphere is downright scary and towns are busier than ever in Final Fantasy. Like always, character modeling is superb, even for secondary characters. The problem with all that is that you come across some framerate drops time to time (not that bad). The OST is good but quite less than the one of FFXIII-2. Background music is especially effecient, and I was truly happy to welcome back the traditional victory fanfare.

    The Break system is gone. Instead, you'll perform «KOs» that leaves the opponent unbalanced for a second. Spamming magic is one of the way to trigger the KO, but not only. Attacking and guarding at a given time will also do it. Up to you to observe the behaviour of the enemy and find out. But there's a snag : KO doesn't necessarily mean you deal more damage, which makes some battles ridiculously looooooong and tiring. Not not mention that the ATB bar is veeeeery slow. It's so bad that you often only have one action after each role switch when the battle gets long. The guard is even worse because it consumes a great deal of the bar, so you're sitting ducks when at the end of a series of actions. I'll let you imagine how irritating this can get when affected by slow (I don't want to remember). In normal mode, each defeat costs one (precious) hour, which would be OK if super-powerful monsters couldn't suddenly pop from nowhere and OHKO you.

    Fighting is pretty tough in Lightning Returns : Lightning's HP no longer recover after battle, and healing is very limited. You're only allowed to carry 6 (later 9) healing objects! Apart from that, you can replenish your HP in hotels and restaurants, or use your GP. But the latter can be used to alter time, so you definitely don't want to use them for cure. Bosses in main quests are pretty intense fights, great gaming moments. I'm pretty sure it would have been far less interesting in easy mode.

    Lightning Returns is representative of th XIII series : a very good JRPG whose (great) qualities aren't enough to forget its (annoying) drawbacks. Its progression system is unique and exciting, its environments are rich and fascinating. I do believe it is really worth a shot despite the ailing battle system and the apathetic story. Final Fantasy will have definitely missed something this generation, let's hope it finds it in the next.
    Expand
  54. Feb 12, 2014
    8
    First off, good things: The combat system (a mix of three personally created classes with your own attacks that you can switch between at any time in-battle) is fun, fast-paced, and keeps you on your toes. Lots of customization as far as outfits go, colors and garments and a depth to outfits never seen before in a FF-related title. The music is fantastic as well. You can also just jumpFirst off, good things: The combat system (a mix of three personally created classes with your own attacks that you can switch between at any time in-battle) is fun, fast-paced, and keeps you on your toes. Lots of customization as far as outfits go, colors and garments and a depth to outfits never seen before in a FF-related title. The music is fantastic as well. You can also just jump wherever you feel like around the maps, even though you'll wind up wasting time trying to step-ladder up over a wall using crates or what-have-you, which leads to the bad...

    being the massively constricting time-system. It gives you 13 in-game days to beat the game, and while doing side-quests and the main story missions can increase your days and the time you have, it still feels incredibly limiting. On the plus side, if you fail, you can just start over with a new game and have all of your things there. Still, the added time-constraint is something that just never should have been put in the game, I don't like feeling pressured. Story has as (un)believable as the last two, but if you've played both of them, there's no reason you'll be turned off from this entry! You made it this far, you're not repelled by it. If you're one of those that didn't like the previous two games--don't even look at it. What are you even doing here? To the others--go rent it, have fun!
    Expand
  55. Apr 16, 2014
    8
    And so the XIII Saga comes to an end. A series that has been met with mixed reception in the West, and well received in Japan, and should this really come to as a surprise to gamers that many of our western critics are very critical in their reviews?

    Even as far as the fans of this franchise in the west are no different in their criticism. Of course criticism is a good thing if it were
    And so the XIII Saga comes to an end. A series that has been met with mixed reception in the West, and well received in Japan, and should this really come to as a surprise to gamers that many of our western critics are very critical in their reviews?

    Even as far as the fans of this franchise in the west are no different in their criticism. Of course criticism is a good thing if it were positive, and this case It's not all that positive. Though does that mean this XIII Saga is a complete letdown? Not in the slightest. In fact, It's possibly the better of the Final Fantasies we've seen since Final Fantasy VIII or Final Fantasy X. This is of course if you can look past that stupidity obsession most "Fans" and Critics have for that beloved VII.

    This is no means a fantastic installment to this long running franchise. It is, however not the worst in the franchise and certainly not terrible. It'll be hard to look past that fanboyism of VII and understand that VII isn't the best in the series, nor is any of the XIII installments. What XIII has managed to do is introduce a Saga that has changed drastically from the first to Lightning Returns.

    With XIII we were given a story driven, character introduction to what would become a Saga in the Final Fantasy franchise. This later opened up in many ways with XIII-2 as the focus switched from story driven to more exploration and focus to tweaking gameplay mechanics.

    Finally with Lightning Returns we see the most innovated combat system in the franchise, with large areas to explore, deep customization and emphasis on Time. Of course there are things that could have been done much better, including the Doomsday Clock, and of course the Story being somewhat disjointed with itself. Not to mention that playing either of these games in Japanese changes the experience drastically, and for the better.

    That isn't to say Troy Baker does a horrible job as Snow, or Ali as Lightning, and rest of the cast. Although myself, personally? I just cannot stand Hope whatsoever and just wish he'd forever shut his trap. Him, and Noel's English actor is simply just over-the-top cheesy, boring and lifeless.

    Anyways! Straight to the more positive points and negative to this conclusion to the XIII Saga!

    +Excellent Combat System
    +Great customization and dress up is always fun with Lightning
    +Varied locations, some which are very well designed
    +Lumina is deviously adorable
    +Great boss battles
    +Varied side-quests to undertake
    +Great cinematic
    +Snow, Lightning, Lumina, and Serah have great English voice actors to compliment them in-game, though not to the rest.
    +The original Japanese cast give off a way better performance

    -Doomsday Clock poorly implemented. Despite having the Chronostasis ability, the time in which the 13 days last is too short, making the game a constant rush for time and barely able to enjoy what the game has to fully offer the player. If each day were to last an entire 60 minutes of real time, or perhaps 120 minutes real time, would the game be fully enjoyable and not always this constant rush.

    -Story is disjointed and hard to fully enjoy with the game forcing time down your throat. It forces multiple playthroughs that seem unnecessary at first, driving potential fans away. What story is here seems great, and even better told through the original Japanese audio, but the Doomsday Clock still frustrates.

    There are far more positive things to Lightning Returns making it the strongest release of the Saga. The Doomsday Clock fits with the story and how time is always against you, It's just simply poorly implemented. Given more time to explore and marvel at what the game has to offer would have given this game far more positive reception.

    In the back of my mind I always seem to think that if the clock were set for an hour or two in real-time would this mechanic been met with more positive reception from fans, and critics alike. Especially here in the west.

    Despite that I myself am enjoying what there is to do in the game, and see myself coming back for a New Game+ - It just would have been nice for the Clock to be extended.
    Expand
  56. Feb 11, 2014
    8
    I beleive people are making this game seem a lot worse than it is, people are giving this 1's and 0's! No game is worth a zero unless it is completely unplayable. And this game isn't. This has an incredible new combat system that is extremely customisable, and is really fun. The story is told the way its supposed to, Lightning is supposed to save souls, and thats what she does, their is noI beleive people are making this game seem a lot worse than it is, people are giving this 1's and 0's! No game is worth a zero unless it is completely unplayable. And this game isn't. This has an incredible new combat system that is extremely customisable, and is really fun. The story is told the way its supposed to, Lightning is supposed to save souls, and thats what she does, their is no other part of the story to it.I know lightning isn't the most likable character in the world but she is becoming a god basically in this game. And the people who made this understood that in all cultures gods don't have emotion. But most fof the other characters in this game are pretty likable. The open world is fantastic! I mean how many other games can you make a certain type of monster species go instinct, there is so much stuff to do in this game that are behind the scenes. I believe this game is a great way to close a fantastic triology in the Final Fantasy series. Expand
  57. Feb 15, 2014
    8
    Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is a great game that is fun to play once you get how everything works. Customizing Lightning is a blast i found myself buying garbs constantly to get buffs and that very special attack i was looking for. DLC garbs(FFX-2 yuna, FF& cloud, Tomb raider) are awesome. Especially Cloud's just cause well...its cloud's!! The story while jumbled at time is allLightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is a great game that is fun to play once you get how everything works. Customizing Lightning is a blast i found myself buying garbs constantly to get buffs and that very special attack i was looking for. DLC garbs(FFX-2 yuna, FF& cloud, Tomb raider) are awesome. Especially Cloud's just cause well...its cloud's!! The story while jumbled at time is all in all intriguing, i wont saw its the new last of us cause id be lying but its alright. Not as bad as what some reviewers are making it out to be. Sound is good, once again not great but good, It says something when i try to when with the FF7 outfit just to hear Victory fanfare over the other victory music. Game play is where this game shines and boy does it shine bright. I wish they would go back and redo 13 and 13-2 wih this battle system i could have saved FF13. Its that awesome. Story: 710 Game play: 1010 Sound 710 Presentation: 710 Overall: 8 - Its a good game and the best in the FF13 trilogy just not the best story. Expand
  58. Feb 15, 2014
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Concept: A doomsday clock ticks off the days, hours, minutes, and seconds of your world's life as you race to find a way to stop it in a terrible story that is almost as big an enemy as any you'll face in the game. Thankfully, XIII-3 continues the trend of having worthwhile gameplay, so it isn't all too terrible after all.

    Graphics: The environments look just as good as the previous two titles, the main characters are designed well- as is their wardrobe for the most part, with some exceptions, and the cutscenes are well rendered. However, in the other aspects of the game, enemies, generic NPCs, and other objects have some pretty muddy and basic textures. It's almost like the developers ran out of time or wanted to rush to complete the game, because some textures sort of fall flat on their faces.

    Sound: While the majority of the music is retuned from the previous entries, there are a few new soundtrack additions as well, and for the most part- even if some are older than others, all of them set the mood and blend together quite well. Certainly one of the stronger aspects of the game.

    Playability: The battle system, while risky to implement something so new, works very well and keeps your interest more than previous entries- making this one more of an Action-oriented role-playing game than anything else, and catering to a broader fanbase I'd reckon as well. As for other gameplay elements, while some are flawed in several ways as mentioned previously, they get the job done well enough to save the story in most places.

    Entertainment: Maybe it's better after all that the doomsday clock forces us to finish in thirteen in-game days, as the horrible thought has occurred to me that actually having the opportunity to drag such a poor story out could actually kill the world faster than any number of soulless enemies could... An intriguing thought indeed. Poor story, dialogue, and "epic" moment aside- Lightning Returns is an action title at heart, and its gameplay is where it appropriately shines.

    Replay Value: High.

    Overall Score: 8.0
    Expand
  59. Apr 20, 2014
    8
    Don't assume from the bad reception and negativity surrounding FFXIII as the series that this game will be bad, just give this a try. This game is actually fun. The story / characters are not its strongest point, however. The gameplay more than make up for it. Time limit is not much of a factor as you would think. You have more than ample time to finish most of content. The battleDon't assume from the bad reception and negativity surrounding FFXIII as the series that this game will be bad, just give this a try. This game is actually fun. The story / characters are not its strongest point, however. The gameplay more than make up for it. Time limit is not much of a factor as you would think. You have more than ample time to finish most of content. The battle system is quite excellent and have tremendous variety of customization options. Expand
  60. Apr 7, 2014
    8
    The response to Lightning Returns is tragic. This game gets so many things right, despite its (possibly fatal) flaws. There are a few distinguishing points in particular that should be mentioned. The strategic gameplay in configuring your equipment is excellent. Very little of the equipment follows the standard pattern of replacing wooden armor with iron armor because it is better in everyThe response to Lightning Returns is tragic. This game gets so many things right, despite its (possibly fatal) flaws. There are a few distinguishing points in particular that should be mentioned. The strategic gameplay in configuring your equipment is excellent. Very little of the equipment follows the standard pattern of replacing wooden armor with iron armor because it is better in every respect. Rather, most of the equipment deals with incomparables, where changing equipment changes your options and approach to the game in ways that are just different, not directly better or worse. There are many surprising and powerful synergies to be found by combining these options. And how awesome is it that your appearances changes as well? I am truly surprised by comments that this is just some Barbie dress-up game. No one says that about Diablo 3.

    The battle system radically reverses the JRPG grind. 95% of battles are optional in this. If you want to drive straight for the story you can do so with minimal fighting. Doing so will not result in difficult story bosses because battles are not tied to your levels. Rather, you fight battles because you want to--the incentive is that it can buy you time, the most limited resource in this game--and you will spend that time trying to see more of the story, explore more of the world, complete more of the side quests. So in a somewhat arm-twisting manner, you get to choose when to fight in ways that pull you deeper into the game, and that approach is surprising and new to the genre.

    What is fatally wrong in this game? The time-limit mechanic combined with potential time wasters will drive many of the games potential players crazy. Completionists will fight the time limit every step of the way. Explorers may feel that they cannot really go exploring, because if you do not advance the story in meaningful ways you will lose and be forced to start over. The constraints and need for efficiency make this one of the most guide-dependent games yet.

    Second problem--the writing. The FF13 series desperately needs its writers to show, not tell, though this episode may actually be at the better end of the spectrum. Characters say some crazy and particular things at times, and that is actually really nice because particulars are what we want; they reveal character and thought and idiosyncrasy. But what may be upsetting fans is that the game may not deliver sufficient continuity as far as what they hope for in a sequel. The characters and tone of the world, its mechanics, its battle systems, its quest systems have all changed rather majorly. And to some, the characters and universe will feel rewritten so completely that it fails as a sequel.

    In short: Great equipment, great battle system and incentives to battle. Maddening time mechanic. Mixed-bag writing and story that still manages to be intriguing at times. The tone of the world is distinct and layered, but time pressure takes away some of the joy of exploring this marvelous world.
    Expand
  61. Mar 5, 2014
    8
    A saga de lightning finalmente chega ao fim, com um final honesto e tentando amarrar todas as pontas, o jogo tenta, e para mim consegue, entregar o que promete.

    Para quem, assim como eu, jogou o primeiro e segundo, não pode deixar de conferir a parte final.
  62. Feb 25, 2014
    8
    Square wanted to respond to fan getting back to a more FF style with no linear course of action.
    On this point they succeed it s like old time you can comme accross a to strong enemy at start because of the liberty you got since the start. But putting a cost of an hours on the flee is greatly dimunishing this freedom .
    I liked FF13 and was a bit disapointed by the 13-2 short lifespawn
    Square wanted to respond to fan getting back to a more FF style with no linear course of action.
    On this point they succeed it s like old time you can comme accross a to strong enemy at start because of the liberty you got since the start. But putting a cost of an hours on the flee is greatly dimunishing this freedom .
    I liked FF13 and was a bit disapointed by the 13-2 short lifespawn (annexe considered).
    The story on this one is note that long but you have many side quest and "boss" so the lifetime is great.

    to sum this up.

    Pro :
    -Lifetime considering side quest etc.
    -Difficulty wich is golbally higher than previous sequel who were really weak (especially 13-2).
    -Story. (if you liked the universe of 13 you d like it)
    - gameplay (nervous and customizable)

    con:
    - time pressure (well in the end it s not that much of a pressure but you don't know it at start)
    -timed npc ( you can see them during certain hours..)
    -Having to change/addapt your style before the combat on any strong monster (at start essentialy) and on boss (always). (why not have given 1 change in fight even on pe cost...).

    In the end i really enjoyed this game but wasn't fan of the timed concept.
    Expand
  63. Feb 25, 2014
    8
    + Gamplay
    + Concept art
    + Interesting world
    + Doomsday clock matters
    + Voice acting
    + Customization of Equipment
    + Definitely replayable
    + Exploration is fun
    - Character models aren't great
    - Story is good but not great
    - Some bugs especially during conversation with NPCs
    Overall,
    8.4/10
  64. Feb 25, 2014
    8
    I am still surprised how bad the scores here are compared to FF XIII. I loved the FF games ever since I was a child, but XII and XIII were just utter disappointments. While I thought FF XIII-2 was quite likable, Lightning Returns does finally justice to that great IP.
    The game is really difficult if you start on Normal and there is a time factor that really influences the game. If you
    I am still surprised how bad the scores here are compared to FF XIII. I loved the FF games ever since I was a child, but XII and XIII were just utter disappointments. While I thought FF XIII-2 was quite likable, Lightning Returns does finally justice to that great IP.
    The game is really difficult if you start on Normal and there is a time factor that really influences the game. If you don't like that, you might really dislike this XIII-3. If you play on Easy though, it is quite possible to do everything the game has to offer within the given time frame(some equipments and bosses are only available on a New Game+). I recommend starting on Easy and play your New Game+ on Normal or Hard.
    The story is ok, but what keeps me playing this game for hours an evening is the awesome fighting system and the endless possibilities of your equipment. Especially on an Easy playthrough you don't necessarily need to stick to only a few very strong armor sets but can adjust them just to your liking. Also, there are quite a lot of quests to do and a lot of monsters to wipe out.
    I also really like the world this game is set in. You can only visit mainly four large areas, that very much differ from each other. I think they all turned out pretty great and are fun to explore.
    Yes, the characters are somewhat dull sometimes, but I think it was worse in previous games and it's not really that uncommon in JRPGs, so you should expect it.
    Expand
  65. Feb 11, 2014
    8
    This game is not perfect by any means but if you actually play through the game you will notice that this is by far one of the best FF games for actual combat and game play. Story may not be as good as the past ( my fav was 12) but its a Final Fantasy game, you have to put your imagination to work. It is a bit over the top but overall the game experience is fun. 13 hours in.
  66. Feb 17, 2014
    8
    I really like the game. It is fun to play and can be very difficult/engaging at the same time. The only thing I don't like is that somebody explains things then Lightning always seems to repeat what they said in her dialogue. She is basically a person who sums every statement up. Don't understand all the hatred.
  67. Feb 18, 2014
    8
    I don't understand why every negative review is "worst final fantasy game after x-2 0/10". I mean, X-2 was pretty damn awesome and so is this.

    Final Fantasy XIII was a fantastic story wrapped in mediocre gameplay unfortunately. Then came Final Fantasy XIII-2 which expanded well on the original battle system but at the same time basically pissed all over XIII's ending. Now Lightning
    I don't understand why every negative review is "worst final fantasy game after x-2 0/10". I mean, X-2 was pretty damn awesome and so is this.

    Final Fantasy XIII was a fantastic story wrapped in mediocre gameplay unfortunately. Then came Final Fantasy XIII-2 which expanded well on the original battle system but at the same time basically pissed all over XIII's ending. Now Lightning Returns is here and it's pretty good.

    Lightning Returns does a good job of using the Final Fantasy XIII mythos to justify what's happened between XIII, XIII-2 and Lightning Returns. The story itself is okay, but as with Final Fantasy X-2, Lightning Returns' story is just there as a vessel for innovative and enjoyable gameplay.

    Lightning Returns has arguably the best battle system in the entire Final Fantasy series so far. The Schema system is a well expanded version of Final Fantasy X-2's Dressphere system, which is probably why people are having PTSD flashbacks to a game they played for 5 minutes and hated because they thought it was too much like Charlie's Angels or something equally stupid. Anyway, the battle system is a nice evolution of Final Fantasy XIII. You continue to only control Lightning, but this time you're given three "Schema" (jobs) you can switch between during battle. Battles are far more action based and can be very intense. If you played the Requiem of the Goddess DLC for XIII-2, that's basically the battle system. Except Lightning Returns made it much much better because Requiem of the Goddess was pretty bad.

    All in all, if you like fun games and Final Fantasy XIII you'll enjoy this conclusion to the series. Alternatively if you hated Final Fantasy XIII and haven't even played the game, do you really think you should be posting a review?

    P.S. Final Fantasy X-2 is also awesome.
    Expand
  68. Feb 23, 2014
    8
    I'm about 40 hours in so far and really enjoying the game. The story line does fall short, as other people have mentioned, but the open world exploration, combat, and customization options make up for it. I haven't ran into the issue of being rushed due to the timer, that others have stated, and I'm playing on normal, not the recommended easy. I've managed to complete all side quests,I'm about 40 hours in so far and really enjoying the game. The story line does fall short, as other people have mentioned, but the open world exploration, combat, and customization options make up for it. I haven't ran into the issue of being rushed due to the timer, that others have stated, and I'm playing on normal, not the recommended easy. I've managed to complete all side quests, and main quests, and I'm only on day 7 out of 14. The key is optimizing your playthrough by doing side quests in a way that minimizes travel, as well as using the very helpful Chronostasis spell to freeze time. I am following a rough guideline, though, so that helps.

    The combat is easily my favorite part. Going in, I was afraid the 1-person combat would be overly simplified, but I was wrong. Combat is deep, thoughtful, and always fun. You don't level up from combat anymore, which at first seems bad, but it ended up working well. You are still incentivized to not avoid combat.

    40 hours in, I still have probably another 30 before I will have done everything I wanted, and I am excited to give NG+ a try. If you're looking for a good story, I don't know why you chose FF in the first place. We hold these old memories in our minds on high pedistals, and expectations run rampant for new games. We discourage innovations from the FF series, and chastise them for shaking up the formula. I for one, am happy they are moving forward with the franchise, instead of trying to relive the past. I remember FF7 and 10 having amazing stories when I was younger, but I honestly think today I am remembering them through rose-colored glasses. If you want a good story, go play Mass Effect, The Last of Us, or Gone Home. If you want a fun, open world, active-time combat system, with a deep customization system, play lightning returns.
    Expand
  69. May 16, 2014
    8
    When I bought this I genuinely expected this to be terrible based on other reviews , but from playing it myself I must say I thoroughly enjoyed it. The time element isn't as restrictive as people think at all , the graphics are gorgeous , the world is vast and beautiful and the gameplay is epic. Once you stop listening to reviews and stop comparing it to older FFs and The previous 2 gamesWhen I bought this I genuinely expected this to be terrible based on other reviews , but from playing it myself I must say I thoroughly enjoyed it. The time element isn't as restrictive as people think at all , the graphics are gorgeous , the world is vast and beautiful and the gameplay is epic. Once you stop listening to reviews and stop comparing it to older FFs and The previous 2 games , there's some serious fun to be had. It's not perfect but no FF ever was not even 6 and 7. People should definitely focus on the positive when it comes to this series rather than over exaggerating every little fault. Perfect end to an entertaining Trilogy. Expand
  70. Jun 16, 2014
    8
    A Nice surprise

    I really didn't like XIII or Lightning to much, But she's won me over with this tittle. Wasn't expecting much actually really enjoyed it
  71. Jan 4, 2015
    8
    Lightning Returns is a great JRPG. I love rpg's but I usually put them down for days since they take so long and they tend to drag on. Not with this game. I had a lot of fun playing it. The story gets boring and so do the characters. The battle system and the game play however are great. I enjoyed them more then any other FF13 game. I did miss having party members but the clothing systemLightning Returns is a great JRPG. I love rpg's but I usually put them down for days since they take so long and they tend to drag on. Not with this game. I had a lot of fun playing it. The story gets boring and so do the characters. The battle system and the game play however are great. I enjoyed them more then any other FF13 game. I did miss having party members but the clothing system made up for most of that. I feel this game gets a lot of hate that it doesn't deserve. 0-4 reviews are not credible as those low scores should be saved for true horrible games. Games that are broken, don't have gameplay ect. Lightning Returns might not do plot and story very well but a lot of other things in the game make up for it. Lightnings sarcasm and wit through out the game make for good laughs. In my opinion it's the funnest FF13 game to play. The first might have had a better story but dragged on and was to much of a chore. The second lacked characters and a fun world to play in. The final one lacks story but the battle system and world make up for it. If you are on the fence get it. Don't trust reviews low then a 4 most chances are they are FF7 booty tickled fans. Expand
  72. Feb 19, 2014
    7
    it's so weird people are **** about 13 now and pretend it's a new thing. I remember way back when people were **** about FF8 and 9 cuz it wasn't FF7, then people complained FFX was just plain bad and they hated it and it was stupid, and now everyone's like FFX was epic and blabla. Honestly.... As for the FFXIII-3... It must be cuz I'm getting older, I don't get sucked into gamesit's so weird people are **** about 13 now and pretend it's a new thing. I remember way back when people were **** about FF8 and 9 cuz it wasn't FF7, then people complained FFX was just plain bad and they hated it and it was stupid, and now everyone's like FFX was epic and blabla. Honestly.... As for the FFXIII-3... It must be cuz I'm getting older, I don't get sucked into games (storywise) as much as I used to, same with this game. Personally I liked the first XIII the least of all 3 games, and it's actually rather nice they abadoned the auto attack thing from 1 and 2. Downsides are it's timed, I love free roaming and taking my time in places and I can't now unless I wanna use New Game + to no end, but then I gotta replay certain sections... I don't like the many conversations, for every side-quest you have to talk to someone, and at first that's fun a bit, but later on it really gets on my nerves. It's pretty Obvious to see this installment is like a cult-game almost. The graphics are far far below FF standards, and something feels very low-budget about it, like they've just wanted to end the series but don't really care for it anymore cuz customer whined too much about the previous ones. Then there are the very small maps (relatively), but unlike FF XIII this game isn't linear as much, you can pick your own order in which to do things. All in all, I find it an enjoyable game despite its faults. Expand
  73. Feb 26, 2014
    7
    Here we go again, this is a game where Final Fantasy purists are going in expecting a retread of FF7. This is an action rpg that actually reminded me a lot of another under appreciated Squeenix game 'Nier'. The opening hours are hard to choke down with some seriously bad writing, a convoluted and uninteresting storyline and some bland environments, but as the game opens itself out, there'sHere we go again, this is a game where Final Fantasy purists are going in expecting a retread of FF7. This is an action rpg that actually reminded me a lot of another under appreciated Squeenix game 'Nier'. The opening hours are hard to choke down with some seriously bad writing, a convoluted and uninteresting storyline and some bland environments, but as the game opens itself out, there's a ton of fun to be had and the story kind of pulls you in. Theres a deep, rich level of character customization and the few boss battles really leave a lot of room for players to tackle them from different angles.
    Listen, Im not blind to why players dislike this part of the Final Fantasy series, but think its just a case of misunderstanding what Square Enix is trying to achieve here. This isnt a deep dark Final Fantasy game; it's light hearted and playful, and very challenging if you sink enough hours into it and allow it to breathe.
    Expand
  74. Feb 24, 2014
    7
    I went into this game expecting it to be pretty damn cool (loved the demo) but either way, this game is bound to disappoint some. The combat is great and a new twist that imo, the Final Fantays series had been failing in for a good several years now and the free roaming exploration angle is nice too as are the gear, weapon and overall cosplay-angle customization but the story is reallyI went into this game expecting it to be pretty damn cool (loved the demo) but either way, this game is bound to disappoint some. The combat is great and a new twist that imo, the Final Fantays series had been failing in for a good several years now and the free roaming exploration angle is nice too as are the gear, weapon and overall cosplay-angle customization but the story is really bad, the graphics aren't impressive at all and some of the new features like the time cycle and the fact that you only level up through side quests and not by fighting enemies are unwelcome. I still don't consider it to be a bad game per se but it's definitely not a great one either. Expand
  75. Feb 11, 2014
    7
    Okay, so listen up guys. This game will either be, in my opinion, a 6 or a 9 for you. If you didn't like the other two entries, chances are that you will find the story and the characters really dull, boring and confusing. The gameplay, music and art direction could keep you playing though, (though the textures had gone worse) However, If you did like the other two entries of the series,Okay, so listen up guys. This game will either be, in my opinion, a 6 or a 9 for you. If you didn't like the other two entries, chances are that you will find the story and the characters really dull, boring and confusing. The gameplay, music and art direction could keep you playing though, (though the textures had gone worse) However, If you did like the other two entries of the series, chances are that you will thoroughly enjoy this game. The conclusion of the saga is a hit or miss, personally I'm satisfied of how it ended and how I got to say good bye to everyone.
    Now let's all, fans and haters, unite in waiting for FFXV!
    Expand
  76. Feb 22, 2014
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Lightning returns brings nothing big to the table, using an outdated engine. Its a disappointing experience in many ways, filled with fetch quests and it manages to bring in all the characters that you may have loved in the previous instalments and destroys them more or less. Its very far away from being a satisfying end to ff13. Although it does bring some fun into the experience which depending on who you are you might be able to play the game once or twice, the new style of gameplay is fun the new scenery introduced is beautiful and they give enough reason to play the new game + Expand
  77. Feb 24, 2014
    7
    I personally enjoyed this game more than the previous two titles but the story isn't really easy to get and the funniest characters have become sad and gloomy, it really makes me lose my love for the characters except lightning and fang cuz both of them are still hot. I also think the time limit in the game is just alright and it kind of makes me want to play the game even more.
  78. Feb 26, 2014
    7
    There is a lot of complain on this ff trilogy (apparently, every game that comes out is just worse). I didnt get a chance to play ff xiii, but I do own ff xiii-2 and LR. In online reviews everything has been subject to complain: Story, characters,"open world" system, music, battle system, etc. I finished the game and here´s my review:
    Story: Its a Little bit confusing how each game of
    There is a lot of complain on this ff trilogy (apparently, every game that comes out is just worse). I didnt get a chance to play ff xiii, but I do own ff xiii-2 and LR. In online reviews everything has been subject to complain: Story, characters,"open world" system, music, battle system, etc. I finished the game and here´s my review:
    Story: Its a Little bit confusing how each game of this trilogy drastically changes its main plot: first, fal cie´s ruling everything and then were trying to save a floating world. Second, time traveling all around the place to find lightning. Third, the world is about to go rotten in 13 days, deal with it. I believe LR story does make sense, but it could have been much more expanded. Only 5 main quests and wait for day 13, and thats it. A Little frustrating.
    Characters: I enjoyed playing with just one character, didnt find anything wrong about it. They greatly took out the annoying and cheesy predecessor references (which ff xiii-2 was full of) without leaving new players in the dark and we got a chance to see a couple of old characters with fresher eyes.
    World system: This is complicated. Putting a countdown on an RPG game,specially FF, is dubious. FF fans love free, open world exploration. Get every single detail in the game. The main problem about this is that besides a couple of towns, there is no "big world exploration", not that you have time for it either. I beat this game in about 35 hours, when ff fans are used to a 55-60 world exploration-monster finding-item collecting system. Once you get to the countdown and beat the game, there´s actually nothing more left. I started to play new game+, a couple of changes once you start on hard mode, but nothing drastic. And they could have improved the garbs a Little bit, in some garbs lightning just looks slutty.
    Music: SE got rid of (most of) the annoying pop from ff xiii-2. And I just love the Luxerion-at-night feel provided by the music!
    Battle system: The battle system is fresh. Implemented a much quicker schemata-changing control. Battles are quite entertaining. But there is no optional super boss in this game, not that i have seen. And its quite annoying if youre a person that likes to test limits with super bosses.
    Conclusion: A nice game, quite refreshing, not an entirely original FF production, the game could have been a Little deeper, idk maybe a 21 day limit or something like that? But worth playing if you want to pass the time
    Expand
  79. Feb 27, 2014
    7
    Compared to other games in the Final Fantasy series this game was a major let down. Square had the chance here to cap off a grand finale of a trilogy, Mass Effect style, but instead this game took all that was great about the previous two and changed them for the sake of changing them. Apart from FF12, which is by far and away the worst in the series!!!! FF13LR is disappointing.

    The
    Compared to other games in the Final Fantasy series this game was a major let down. Square had the chance here to cap off a grand finale of a trilogy, Mass Effect style, but instead this game took all that was great about the previous two and changed them for the sake of changing them. Apart from FF12, which is by far and away the worst in the series!!!! FF13LR is disappointing.

    The combat system in this game was more button mash than any logical thought out plan. If i want to play hack and slash i will play a series that is known for making hack and slash titles. Final fantasy is built on it's turn based battle system, yes they have and successfully played around with this mechanic before but this is the second time they have veered directly away from turn based and for a second time made something that is just clunky and annoying. I don't feel in control of my character during combat OR in the storyline, i feel like a camera man just watching as she goes about the motions. SE, PLEASE, PLEASE stick to turn based combat!!!

    This storyline, i get that side quests are a vital part of the storyline in FF13LR, but they just feel like they were added to fill in for the fact that the main storyline quests are so quick. AND, on top of that they are also then dragged out needlessly. SE had a great chance here to make an epic storyline, what we end up with instead is disjointed storytelling slung together. It felt at times like i was playing an MMORPG, go here, get that, kill 20 of these. So many fetch quests!!!!!

    I still give this game a 7, as it is a great game, apart from the obvious flaws above, compared to much of the same crap that is out there. However compared to the previous iterations in FF13, and other FF titles (Apart from 12 which if you know anything about FF is junk), this game is a massive let down.
    Expand
  80. Feb 28, 2014
    7
    I'm going to give this the score I think it deserves even though I agree with the people who are giving 10's to counter act the other people that are giving excessively low scores.

    I think this is being unfairly rated based on comparing it to other final fantasy games. While I understand the rational for this, it creates sort of a weird paradox where if you compare this to other games
    I'm going to give this the score I think it deserves even though I agree with the people who are giving 10's to counter act the other people that are giving excessively low scores.

    I think this is being unfairly rated based on comparing it to other final fantasy games. While I understand the rational for this, it creates sort of a weird paradox where if you compare this to other games with a 5.6 score and the quality of this game is magnitudes higher.

    That being said this game has 2 major faults that I see.
    1) Chronostasis
    Now the concept behind this isn't necessarily inherently flawed but the execution was poor. As it is executed this feature acts as a major immersion killer. You are constantly having to micromanage this and it is disruptive to game play. You have to go 2 menu's deep to activate something that you basically have to do every 4th battle and not only that but the graphics and sound are very poorly executed. Activating is like a a flash grenade on your screen, you can't see for a few seconds immediately after activation. The sound that it does when it wears off sounds way too similar to the sound of an enemy spawning and is easily missed. In Summary it's a completely game disruptive and immersion disruptive feature due to execution. An easy fix in my mind was to increase the resources and duration of the effect and of course change the graphics and sounds.
    2) Sandbox Execution
    I understand that players have very much been demanding more of a sand box like gamestyle where you can explore and choose your own path. Past Final Fantasy games have been criticized for being too linear. This motivated the developers to try and create this atmosphere and naturally they tried to innovate on it. The end result was something that technically is a sand box but doesn't feel like it to the player. You are in a mediocre sized sand box and you have to replay it over and over again. Now to be fair the experience alters slightly on each iteration but the overall feeling of a sandbox game is completely lost.

    So I want to talk about Pros to the game:
    1) Graphics
    As usual the graphics and cut scenes are outstandingly crafted, additional cool features include being able to customize your look for the cut scenes. I don't see this game as really lacking in any way from past installments in terms of graphics.
    2) Combat System
    I for one am a fan of the combat system, so much so in fact that it is the driving reason I have played all of the FF13 games. I love the way they have balanced the needs for the different roles, nothing feels useless and nothing feels like it's so overpowered that you shouldn't use anything else. In contrast Bravely Default which I also enjoy uses the more historical combat setting and it is extremely unbalanced. The customization for your schemata in FF13LR is amazing, you can put a magic move in each scheme and switch between them while continuing a combo, or you can put all your magic on one scheme, all your physical in another and min max your stats for it. There's just so many possibilities and I have been using some for awhile then I go online and find people who are using something fundamentally different and being just as successful. It's a lot faster paced and skill dependent as well. Additionally it's not all about damage anymore, you can be successful while focusing on staggering and then turning on the damage for short bursts or you can just try to do it the traditional way and put out consistent damage (poison is helpful for this). I feel the combat system receives the most unfair criticism, people don't like it purely because it's different and they don't judge it based on it's own merits.
    3) Story
    I have to say that I am not a huge fan of the story, not necessarily because of the themes or the plot but just the character execution, motivations, metaphors etc... I'm not going to judge it harshly because I know a lot of people that enjoy these types of stories, but it is not my cup of tea. The biggest flaw I see in not just this story but other similar japanese inspired storylines are the excessive use of metaphors and lack of realism. To clarify I'm not talking realism like dragons and magic I'm talking realism like people's personalities and decision making. I would use metal gear solid franchise as another example of this.
    4) Overall Gameplay
    I rated this as a 7 as you can see, I love the combat, don't love the repetitiveness and micromanagement. Graphics and sound are great, story was so so.

    In closing I wish some of these people that rated it 0-4 would go play a game deserving of the rating and then come back and rate this properly. There are some truly terrible games out there, this game has issues but it is not one of them.
    Expand
  81. Apr 19, 2014
    7
    Enjoyed the game. People complained about time limit, but if you run out of time you just start over with all your upgrades and keep trying. Graphics are good, battle is enjoyable, a lot better than the FFX/X-2 remake.
  82. May 10, 2014
    7
    la historia es enigmática, te va metiendo cada vez mas, pero se alejo demasiado de la formula de los final fantasy y merecía terminar mucho mejor la saga... el final de verdad pudo ser mejor. dudo que sea la ultima vez que vemos a ligthning
  83. May 16, 2014
    7
    This game is good, I know that as a FF game the fans really want to enjoy a game like in the past, with an awesome plot, combat, exploration and characters. I played this game twice and I must say it is good, I enjoy the combat system, traveling and doing some quest was really fun and enjoyable. This is not a perfect game and I wanted more things like summons and more characters, MisionsThis game is good, I know that as a FF game the fans really want to enjoy a game like in the past, with an awesome plot, combat, exploration and characters. I played this game twice and I must say it is good, I enjoy the combat system, traveling and doing some quest was really fun and enjoyable. This is not a perfect game and I wanted more things like summons and more characters, Misions where you can get an awesome weapon or power. In my opinion this is a good game, it is replayable also. Expand
  84. Apr 15, 2015
    7
    Its not the best but it is good with Lighting returning and a decent storyline, i liked the combat system a lot but it was really different from the other games and the last two games of this trilogy were bad but this one is just able to impress me and make me enjoy it.
  85. Feb 29, 2016
    7
    So you will know what type of gamer is writing this review, I'll list three of my favorite games.
    Atelier Totori
    Fire emblem Danganronpa   IN DEPTH REVIEW: Lightning Returns had its good points and it's bad points. The opening cg and the ending cg was awesome as expected from a Final Fantasy but some of the in game graphics were sad. I believe I seen a picture of an actual roasted
    So you will know what type of gamer is writing this review, I'll list three of my favorite games.
    Atelier Totori
    Fire emblem
    Danganronpa
     
    IN DEPTH REVIEW:

    Lightning Returns had its good points and it's bad points. The opening cg and the ending cg was awesome as expected from a Final Fantasy but some of the in game graphics were sad. I believe I seen a picture of an actual roasted turkey cut and pasted onto a plate in the game. The trees looked like paper. Some of the costumes didn't look so great when Lightning ran or jumped. One was a dress, and when she ran up hill, her legs had robotic movement. You will see repeated npcs with only slight changes, such as hair style and voice. Other than these things, the rest of the game looked ok.

    The gameplay was interesting enough. It was challenging on normal mode. I died at least 10 times throughout the game. The boss fights were the real challenge in this game. Don't be surprised if you find yourself surfing the Internet looking for strategies to get past some bosses. You do not level up Lightning in this game, instead you upgrade abilities, buy better equipement, and complete quest to better your stats. You assign an outfit with its own unique stats or auto ability, equip 2 accessories with their own stat boost or auto ability, and then equip the equipment and abilities of your liking. Plenty of customization there. You also can equip an adornment for cosmetic reasons. They do not improve Lightning's stats in any way but are purely cosmetic. Not really any complaints about the gameplay but it didn't pull me in personally. 

    I just felt that this game wasn't given much thought and was rushed out, with the sex up l
    Lightning thing to guarantee sales. I'm not saying this is a bad thing but this game could've been so much more if more care had been put into the making of this game. 
    I would recommend this game for about a 20 dollar price tag, which it is now. Slightly disappointing Final Fantasy title but it concludes the story of the previous two games so it is worth playing in my opinion.

    That wraps this review up, hope it helps.
    Expand
  86. Aug 5, 2015
    7
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I liked this game a little better than XIII-2 for a few reasons.
    The battle system changed again and this time I thought it was for the better.
    I could control Lightning again and while her stoicism does make her less likable than in the first two games, I found that her sarcastic attitude pretty funny at some points.
    The freedom given in this game is extraordinary considering how the first game started.
    The ending was pretty lackluster but at least it HAD an ending (I'm looking at you XIII-2).
    The graphics were once again turned down with the shrinking budget but it still looked presentable.

    All in all, Lightning returns did all it could to improve a franchise with what it had to go on but sequels are often never as good as the original.
    Expand
  87. Mar 11, 2016
    7
    Kinda missing a proper final challenge by giving NG+ a possibility for another higher difficulty when it comes to high end optimization, except few bosses regular monsters should be a bit more threadful and much tougher than they are on hard mode. Also the missing possibility to upgrade weaved in garb abilities makes many garbs useless near to the end of the game.

    The battle mechanics
    Kinda missing a proper final challenge by giving NG+ a possibility for another higher difficulty when it comes to high end optimization, except few bosses regular monsters should be a bit more threadful and much tougher than they are on hard mode. Also the missing possibility to upgrade weaved in garb abilities makes many garbs useless near to the end of the game.

    The battle mechanics are unlike a RPG usually is, but it's still interesting enough to make it fun to play, just another way we know from the FF series.
    Expand
  88. Feb 13, 2017
    7
    Started with a 7 time ago, then raised to 8 but now again I lower the score down to 7. At times it's a great experice but at others is very frustrating, no matter what you do or how good you are or what kind of schemas you use and perfectionate. Specialy the very final boss gets very frustrating. My recommendation would be your first gameplay to play on "easy mode" (don't get fooled by theStarted with a 7 time ago, then raised to 8 but now again I lower the score down to 7. At times it's a great experice but at others is very frustrating, no matter what you do or how good you are or what kind of schemas you use and perfectionate. Specialy the very final boss gets very frustrating. My recommendation would be your first gameplay to play on "easy mode" (don't get fooled by the difficulty's name, "normal" means hard lol). FF XIII-2 I enjoyed it more than XIII, but not sure if LR:FF XIII is better or not, sometimes yes sometimes not. On the other hand, don't get scared by the whole time thing, you'll sort it our soon. Expand
  89. Feb 11, 2014
    6
    Contrary to the popular belief that the FFXIII series is garbage and no one likes it, I actually love it. I know the characters can be over the top at times but that's true of most anime you watch and just part of the culture from where the game originated. I enjoyed the entire series.
  90. Feb 11, 2014
    6
    I'm sorry but this is the worst FF game I've ever played. And I love FF from VII-XII and VI Advance (main series only; didn't care for any sequels, spin-offs or online). After the disappointing XIII and XIII-2, why do they bother with this game instead of XV. I stuck by Square Enix when they said that they wanted to address the issues that their previous game had by making a sequel to it.I'm sorry but this is the worst FF game I've ever played. And I love FF from VII-XII and VI Advance (main series only; didn't care for any sequels, spin-offs or online). After the disappointing XIII and XIII-2, why do they bother with this game instead of XV. I stuck by Square Enix when they said that they wanted to address the issues that their previous game had by making a sequel to it. It's clear to me now that that was just an excuse to cash in the FF XIII trilogy. Much like The Matrix Trilogy, it got worse and worse. The only thing that's good about this game (and pretty much the previous two games) is the battle system. It's more action-oriented and fast-paced battle system makes battles more thrilling but sadly, you can no longer gain experience from battles. For some reason, the graphics is worse and the countdown is completely pointless. It diverts you from freely exploring the open world of the game, I would've love to spend more time looking around (as FF is known for designing one of the best looking environments) but I didn't want the timer to run out, even if you extend it, so I just tried to complete the game as fast as possible. The FF XIII series is weak in storytelling but sadly, it's the same thing here. The story is inconsistent, many of the characters lacked development and the attempt at humor is very typical in Japanese storytelling. I've lost all respect I had for Square Enix but even though this gen's FF is very disappointing, I still have high hopes for the franchise. They may release another crap FF game but if the franchise came to an end, there would be no chance of having another great FF game with the high quality standard of PS1 and 2's FF games. Lightning Returns isn't entirely terrible but it's average and disappointing, only hardcore fans can make the most out of this game. For everyone else, look away from JPRGs. There hasn't been any great JRPG games this gen (except for Xenoblade Chronicles for Wii) so I hope Square Enix can pick up the franchise again for the eighth generation, hopefully that will be FF XV. Expand
  91. Feb 19, 2014
    6
    Much less than i was specting , poor game interaction , you just talk , upgrade gear , battlebattlebattle and battle , just annoying for me , really..., and you gotta really be a fan of FF series to like and understand this game(story) , to like its mechanics and to play with "enjoyment", just another game that make me want my money back( I DONT RECCOMMEND IT if you never played finalMuch less than i was specting , poor game interaction , you just talk , upgrade gear , battlebattlebattle and battle , just annoying for me , really..., and you gotta really be a fan of FF series to like and understand this game(story) , to like its mechanics and to play with "enjoyment", just another game that make me want my money back( I DONT RECCOMMEND IT if you never played final fantasy before) Expand
  92. Nov 10, 2014
    6
    Game isn't boring, but man has this series gone downhill in terms of story. It's funny how even the characters, especially Hop,e point out how the story doesn't make sense. Always found that funny. The fighting, which has always been excellent in FFXIII returns and is as good as ever. The only downside is the story, which is kinda lame. Final Fantasy used to have such epic storyGame isn't boring, but man has this series gone downhill in terms of story. It's funny how even the characters, especially Hop,e point out how the story doesn't make sense. Always found that funny. The fighting, which has always been excellent in FFXIII returns and is as good as ever. The only downside is the story, which is kinda lame. Final Fantasy used to have such epic story telling, but that has changed. Let's hope Square Enix can redeem themselves when FFXV comes out! Expand
  93. Feb 12, 2014
    5
    Frustrating, this word resume what I think about this opus. Great battle system, customization, exploration, technically sound but sooooo frustrating. The story is bad, but I can go past this. No the problem is the timer : you just don't have time to really do what you want, to explore every single part of the world, to develop your character. You must go quickly from one quest to another,Frustrating, this word resume what I think about this opus. Great battle system, customization, exploration, technically sound but sooooo frustrating. The story is bad, but I can go past this. No the problem is the timer : you just don't have time to really do what you want, to explore every single part of the world, to develop your character. You must go quickly from one quest to another, always rushing and never spent time doing anything else if you want to finish the story. Add to this that it is nearly impossible to do without game over and go in some kind of New game + : you keep your character as develop as she was, but have to redo everything...... Soooo frustrating. Expand
  94. Jan 25, 2015
    5
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. This is not your Final Fantasy

    Ok let me say that I truly am a fan the Final Fantasy series, this game is about saving the world within a

    limited period of time,Square-Enix could have a made a great setting around that, instead you are left to

    do meaningless and painful questing,a story that makes no sense whatsoever ,it is filled with a bunch of recycled soundtrack of the previous FFXIII-2 , even if you are in for the battles like I was ,not today my

    friend, it is barely enough to make you reach the end , the game lets you think you are making progress ,

    dont stay till the end and do yourself a favor and save spend your money on a good rpg .Honestly, I

    finished the game after 15 hours, it left a bad taste in my mouth.

    My final score 5/10
    Expand
  95. Feb 12, 2014
    5
    I'm still in the beginning of the game and as of right now I'm rating it between 5-6. I absolutely love Final Fantasy. I liked FFXIII, it's definitely not the best in the series, but it's good in my opinion, FFXIII-2 was meh for me. The story was boring and I didn't care for the new battle system. When Lightning Returns was announced I wasn't excited about it, but I was not not excitedI'm still in the beginning of the game and as of right now I'm rating it between 5-6. I absolutely love Final Fantasy. I liked FFXIII, it's definitely not the best in the series, but it's good in my opinion, FFXIII-2 was meh for me. The story was boring and I didn't care for the new battle system. When Lightning Returns was announced I wasn't excited about it, but I was not not excited about it either it was something I could patiently wait for. Now that it's here it's aggravating the hell out of me. Idk about everyone else, but for some reason I cannot grasp the synchronization concept i think it's so confusing to the point where I don't even want to do it, I don't like the new Stagger mechanic I prefer the old one, so far the story is boring as hell, and the biggest thing that makes me angry with this game is the TIMER. I can't take my time and explore the world. I have to rush around and go from quest to quest before I'm forced to return to the Ark at 6am. I was never the one to complain about this, but I'm getting tired of these characters. I know I don't have to play it, but since I finished the first two I figured I'd get this one to see how it all ends, hopefully. I have almost no interest in this game when I turn it on i just feel like "ugh, I don't feel like playing this! But I need to see how it ends!". I'm pretty much trying to force myself through it. I appreciate SE continuing the FF franchise, but I want these characters to be done and over with. I want FFXV already plus more. Can we please move on already? Expand
  96. Feb 11, 2014
    5
    From the amount I've played into this game so far, I have to say that while it makes up for the XIII saga in some aspects, it lacks in others.

    First, the combat system is a huge improvement over the one offered in XIII and XIII-2. Square finally seems to have broken the shell over this series and allowed us to customize to our play styles. The branching paths, and tension you feel as
    From the amount I've played into this game so far, I have to say that while it makes up for the XIII saga in some aspects, it lacks in others.

    First, the combat system is a huge improvement over the one offered in XIII and XIII-2. Square finally seems to have broken the shell over this series and allowed us to customize to our play styles. The branching paths, and tension you feel as you play through the game are palpable.

    The graphics, while good, are starting to show their age a little. The score is subpar, especially compared to the score of previous FF's (including XIII itself). But overall the presentation of the game is passable.

    The largest detraction I can label on this game is its story. I'm one of the few that actually got drawn in by the story of XIII. While it certainly wasn't amazing, I found it to be interesting enough for me to warrant exploring (the little you could) the world to learn more about it. XIII-2 was a marked downturn in this, as the world merely grew more convoluted and the characters grew seemingly less important. This downturn has hit the depths with Lightning Returns. I don't want to give any spoilers, but suffice to say that the payoff to those who have been loyal to the XIII saga does not seem like it will be worth it.

    I say check it out if you're a rabid fan of FF, or if the only major problem you had with the previous games was the combat system. Otherwise stay away.
    Expand
  97. Feb 11, 2014
    5
    Quality game= Good music, Good graphic, good game-play
    Bad story = It's BORING/BAD/HORRIBLE/It feels FORCED.
    Lightning is WAY too Mary sue-ish and in all honesty, the story seems like a poorly written fan fiction. Making her all powerful doesn't make her EPIC. It just makes her OP. I could play underrated games like Sengoku Basara for HOURS compared to LR:FFXIII. By the way, the
    Quality game= Good music, Good graphic, good game-play
    Bad story = It's BORING/BAD/HORRIBLE/It feels FORCED.

    Lightning is WAY too Mary sue-ish and in all honesty, the story seems like a poorly written fan fiction.
    Making her all powerful doesn't make her EPIC. It just makes her OP.

    I could play underrated games like Sengoku Basara for HOURS compared to LR:FFXIII.
    By the way, the FFXIII trilogy ISN'T underrated! FFXII, NOW that's a FF that is underrated.
    FFXIII's story was horrid and people don't like it.

    Not only was it bad, there are games that SE was suppose to bring and they didn't: Chrono Breaker, FF Agito that became Type-0 and Versus was delayed as **** Not only that, all I see is FF everywhere. I want more variety from SE.
    Expand
  98. Nov 24, 2014
    4
    I am a long time Final Fantasy gamer, but this game feels absolutely nothing like games that should be credited with that name. It's so far removed from what people love about the franchise that you have to stop and wonder what the hell is wrong with them. I actually beat it, that in itself is a feat of patience. This game is awful, time limit, the stories, the quests... you have to be aI am a long time Final Fantasy gamer, but this game feels absolutely nothing like games that should be credited with that name. It's so far removed from what people love about the franchise that you have to stop and wonder what the hell is wrong with them. I actually beat it, that in itself is a feat of patience. This game is awful, time limit, the stories, the quests... you have to be a very biased fan of the series to really support this game. Expand
  99. Apr 25, 2014
    4
    I play Final Fantasy games since the NES era, so I know what I am talking about. Additionally, I have played them ALL, with the exception of 11, as I was never into MMOs anyway. Even the last entries (13 and 13-2 had great moments and I had a lot of fun with them - I have actually finished 13 twice). I think Lightning is a great character and truly represents the new generation of FF and,I play Final Fantasy games since the NES era, so I know what I am talking about. Additionally, I have played them ALL, with the exception of 11, as I was never into MMOs anyway. Even the last entries (13 and 13-2 had great moments and I had a lot of fun with them - I have actually finished 13 twice). I think Lightning is a great character and truly represents the new generation of FF and, in my honest opinion, she is a very badass heroine. I simply love her. Lightning Returns finally converts her into the war-horse she is, making her a one-woman army. The gameplay/combat is SICK, original and a lot of fun. But that is all, I'm afraid. The rest of the game is a complete mess... and, seriously, why, WHY make a countdown in an open-world game? Why make a countdown that punishes you for wanting to explore and see all those cool settings and cities? Why make battles that don't give experience? It just does not make sense and gives me a feeling that the game is broken. I feel sad for hating this game, I really wanted to love it. But even for a true fan of the series, it is impossible. Lightning Returns is probably the worst game in the franchise and a shame that the trilogy has to end in such a sad, mediocre note. Expand
  100. Jun 7, 2014
    4
    Algunos dicen que es el mejor de los tres sólo porque ya no es lineal. Y es que vale, mejora un problema muy grande que tuvo XIII, pero también es verdad que se carga lo mucho bueno que brilló en este primer capítulo. Y es que, ¿dónde ha ido la épica, la historia y los grandes personajes de antaño?, esto más bien es un simulador de recados a personajes frikazos, en plan busca mi peluche,Algunos dicen que es el mejor de los tres sólo porque ya no es lineal. Y es que vale, mejora un problema muy grande que tuvo XIII, pero también es verdad que se carga lo mucho bueno que brilló en este primer capítulo. Y es que, ¿dónde ha ido la épica, la historia y los grandes personajes de antaño?, esto más bien es un simulador de recados a personajes frikazos, en plan busca mi peluche, traeme esto, mata treinta monstruos, busca números, etc, en fin, una jugabilidad muy divertida para ofrecer en el 2014. Encima con prisas porque va contrareloj. Vamos, que parece un batiburrillo de ideas extrambóticas que no terminan de funcionar ni cuajar bien. Sigue así Square enix, otro Final Fantasy del montón y van unos cuantos... Expand
Metascore
66

Mixed or average reviews - based on 62 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 16 out of 62
  2. Negative: 3 out of 62
  1. Pelit (Finland)
    May 11, 2014
    70
    Lightning Returns shows us a flashy new wardrobe but looks still rule over personality. Sadly Lightnings chance of clothes does nothing for the lack of her personality. Overall it is enjoyable, but messy story and flimsy characters don't do it any favours. [March 2014]
  2. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Apr 7, 2014
    60
    Beautiful world and solid gameplay, countered by a boring story and not very likeable characters. [Issue #240]
  3. CD-Action
    Apr 2, 2014
    70
    I spent 25 hours with Lightning Returns and most of them were pleasant, but it was mainly entertainment for my eyes and fingers rather than my brain. I reckon it to be the best game of the XIII trilogy, but it’s far behind those really outstanding Final Fantasies. [04/2014, p.60]