Generally favorable reviews - based on 54 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 43 out of 54
  2. Negative: 2 out of 54
  1. Final Fantasy XIII at times doesn’t feel like a Final Fantasy game; what with its traditional mechanics streamlined down to next to nothing and not much outside the main scope of the game to get on with. If you can put that aside though and sit through a painfully slow beginning, then Final Fantasy XIII is as rewarding as any JRPG on the console.
  2. A good starting point for newcomers to the franchise - and indeed the genre; however fans and veterans may see it as an RPG in a strait jacket.
  3. 80
    Ultimately the lack of anything substantial to do beyond fleeing and fighting soon brings the game crashing back to earth, and even when the walls are lifted Final Fantasy XIII’s world can seem strangely lifeless.
  4. Those who don't check their preconceptions at the door are missing the point. Novices and veterans be warned; Final Fantasy XIII demands your complete and utter surrender. Those willing to comply will be rewarded with a unique and compelling gaming experience accompanied by visuals that can only be described as completely out of this world.
  5. Stir up a fast-paced, strategic battle system, some awe-inspiring sounds and visuals, and a unique story told through a frustratingly linear adventure, and you get Final Fantasy 13.
  6. It's still a game I would thoroughly recommend to people, especially those who, like me, are afraid to touch RPGs nowadays because they're afraid of the time investment.
  7. A beautiful adventure that you can’t put down for the first thirty hours. The second half isn’t as gripping as the first, though. It’s interesting that the game sways away from the previous games in the series, but not everyone will be pleased with the linear gameplay.
  8. Those looking for a traditional game may find the linearity restricting. [Issue#57, p.88]
  9. It’s a mixed bag and the game is nowhere near perfect. Stick through the linear and less gripping parts for the first few hours, and you’ll end up with a story and combat engine that’ll hold you hostage until completion.
  10. While Final Fantasy XIII is ultimately an enjoyable experience, the change in pace will throw off fans of turn-based battles or those who enjoyed the immediate grandeur of the twelfth installment.
  11. If you're looking for complex multi-layered characters and a thrilling storyline, I seriously doubt Final Fantasy XIII will give you the ride of your life.
  12. Final Fantasy seems to have fallen in a rut, but if you can put up with the linearity for long enough, there is an interesting story and game at its heart. That said, even hard-core Final Fantasy fans are going to struggle to find an A++ RPG here.
  13. It may feel a bit different from the Final Fantasy you're used to, but Final Fantasy XIII deserves the chance to branch out and develop on its own.
  14. It’s also worth noting that there’s a huge difference in visuals when playing this game on the Xbox 360. The game seems to have been made for Blu-Ray, and it’s only on one disc, making the PS3 version the more appealing one to buy.
  15. You have to hand it to Square Enix for trying to move things forward - better that than yet another rehash of the tried and tested Final Fantasy formula (the less said about Infinite Undiscovery the better). But it does so along a path so narrow and straight that you long for the days of old.
  16. High production values and charming characters make Final Fantasy XIII a good game. But an all too linear structure and a boring story keep it from being brilliant.
  17. By eliminating many of the factors that we've come to expect Square-Enix has delivered a Final Fantasy XIII that is different, but also desperately attempts to cling on to some elements of the past purely to maintain conventions. Unfortunately, the biggest criticism is the fact that you're left with a feeling of playing for the sake of it, rather than savoring it.
  18. 70
    It's a gigantic, beautiful game, but it's one that irreparably hurts itself with an unforgivably slow introduction.
  19. Too much streamlining has blunted FFXIII's hooks. This isn't epic, it's arduous. [May 2010, p.67]
  20. Taking way too long to become compelling, the game is among the most facetious RPGs on the market. It wants to play the part, but alas, it’s only playing one big practical joke on the gamer.
  21. Final Fantasy XIII just needed to be about half as long as it is, with tighter pacing and a faster ramp up to entertaining combat in its first half. But at least whether it's entertaining or boring you, it's unflinchingly gorgeous from one end to the other.
  22. Final Fantasy XIII shoves a handful of protagonists in your face that look like they were designed at a cosplay convention and asks you to care about them simply because they’re wearing a beanie, have a cool nickname or speak with a mysterious Australian accent.
  23. A game whose concept of player agency is so dull that you can conquer large portions by mashing one button. You don’t play FF13; you’re grudgingly invited to participate in it.
  24. 40
    With Final Fantasy XII being such a revolution to the series, creating the series’ best battle system in the process, Final Fantasy XIII feels like a massive backwards step.
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 501 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 68 out of 119
  2. Negative: 29 out of 119
  1. Aug 16, 2010
    Gamepro descriped this game best: "a long hallway toward an orange target symbol on your mini-map that triggers a cutscene, a boss fight, orGamepro descriped this game best: "a long hallway toward an orange target symbol on your mini-map that triggers a cutscene, a boss fight, or both. Frankly for the first six chapters I thought this game had longest tutorial ever, with total lack of towns, exploration or people to talk to. In short anything fun. There are some good points in the game of course. Story isn't horrible, it isn't anything to write home about either, and combat is much improved, however all together game is just bad even with all the improvements. If you want to play final fantasy I suggest you play any other number from I-XII, they are all better than this one. Full Review »
  2. Jul 15, 2012
    Final Fantasy XIII is a pretty game but it lacks all the elements that make a Final Fantasy game good. The characters are boring, unmemorableFinal Fantasy XIII is a pretty game but it lacks all the elements that make a Final Fantasy game good. The characters are boring, unmemorable and at some points even annoying. Lightning is a perfect female replica of Cloud if you take away all of the details that make Cloud interesting. The game is extremely linear and even when you reach Pulse. The battle system is extremely annoying because your party tends to randomly wander around the field and that causes problems during many boss battles when a boss is able to do damage over a specific piece of area. Leveling up is also annoying in the game because you have to use the crystal system. It's not the worst game I've ever played but it's nowhere near the excellence of the games 7 to 10 of the Final Fantasy series. Full Review »
  3. Sep 30, 2010
    Uttter **** the first 6 hours you constantly spam one button and run along a linear corridor, later in the game you can switch stances witchUttter **** the first 6 hours you constantly spam one button and run along a linear corridor, later in the game you can switch stances witch only is useful between the boss fights aka "hours of boring bull**** for some other bull****".

    The story is only good for weaaboos.
    Full Review »