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Mixed or average reviews - based on 21 Critics What's this?

User Score
6.6

Mixed or average reviews- based on 171 Ratings

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  • Summary: A direct sequel to the unhelpfully titled Final Fantasy XIII-2, Lightning Returns is another action-RPG, this time with a retooled gameplay system and a story that picks up a mere 500 years later, concluding the FFXIII saga.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 7 out of 21
  2. Negative: 0 out of 21
  1. Feb 23, 2014
    85
    Never boring and full of brilliant open environments, Lightning Returns tells a great story coupled with a new and very effective combat system. Square Enix could have done something more on the technical side, but the great artistic design manages to make us turn a blind eye on some of the problems.
  2. Feb 11, 2014
    80
    From its dazzling battle system to its overarching temporal puzzle, this is the best of the set - even if it's dragged down by an exhaustingly impenetrable plot that its creators will no doubt be pleased to be done with.
  3. Feb 11, 2014
    80
    While those that disliked XIII and its sequel might not find anything here to convert them – or at least not allow themselves to be converted by a strong action-RPG due to its cast or past – fans will find an entertaining and surprisingly innovative full stop to this chapter of the Final Fantasy franchise.
  4. 70
    Thanks to its engaging combat and spectacle, Lightning Returns manages to distract somewhat from its overarching design issues. As a game, it's notably flawed but has its moments. [March 2014, p.76]
  5. Feb 11, 2014
    70
    On the one hand it’s very well-made and it shows: the visuals are great and the familiar hallmarks are all present and correct. But on the other hand, there’s something undeniably missing from the formula, an element of fun that remains absent despite the unique battle system and the returning cast.
  6. Feb 24, 2014
    65
    There is a lot wrong in this last installment for FFXIII. Fans of the franchise will need to play it to enjoy all the nods to past characters, yet it is not worth playing for those who aren't already huge FF or JRPG fans.
  7. Feb 11, 2014
    50
    It's a collection of ideas and concepts that don't come together in a coherent way, led by a character who has shown no identifiable growth since her first appearance four years ago.

See all 21 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 38
  2. Negative: 13 out of 38
  1. Mar 15, 2014
    10
    A fantastic game that brings a great trilogy to a close. Don't understand why it gets so much hate the story is excellent as is the game play a must play. Expand
  2. Feb 15, 2014
    10
    It's a good game, no matter what they say. What I don't understand is that Nier has the SAME (almost) score than Lightning returns, when obviously Nier is worse.
    Too many haters/spoiled fan boys.
    Expand
  3. Feb 12, 2014
    10
    Lightning Returns improves upon everything its predecessors brought to the table tenfold. Having the same feel as the previous two games but improving upon the battle system, exploration, and customization are only some of many multitudes of improvements found in Lightning Returns. Another big feature is the timed mechanic not unlike those found in Deadrising and Majora's Mask, which makes the game more hectic and fast paced. All in all it is a terrific game that get's an incredibly high recommendation. Expand
  4. May 29, 2014
    7
    I can't believe how much fun I had with this game. The battlesystem is really good and challenging, the visuals are nice, but can be ugly as well at some parts. And there is a **** of content. Character are meh this time around. Even Caius, one of the best villains in every Final Fantasy isn't that good. The story is now hitting **** but can be understand after reading into the lore, I said can not will.
    Overall, the gameplay is fun, but story and characters dissapointing. For me I had **** of fun, but I have to give it a fair score for it's flaws. 7/10
    Expand
  5. Mar 11, 2014
    5
    The pressure of having a deducting time system bearing down on on open world RPG is just stressful, things are going to be rushed if youre not careful.

    The stagger system is good but for such a limited amount of ATB on the gauge you can hardly reach stagger points on certain enemies (such as the Gertrudes!!) and the battle just drags on and on until by chance you get a stagger and then have to change schemata to wail into the enemy. And as for the guard thing? That's **** annoying!! specifically when you know you have pressed it on time and you still get knocked on your ass

    Aside from all that I give the game a 5 out of 10.
    Expand
  6. Feb 22, 2014
    3
    I enjoyed FF13, the story was good and the combat was decent, but everything has went downhill since the first entry to this series. I gave Lightning Returns an honest try, but the story was just terrible. They completely abandon everything that has happened so far to make Lightning the savior of a previously unmentioned god? And you have to save souls which make a tree grow which somehow extends the amount of time you have? Whatever, I could just ignore the story if the gameplay was good, but that is not the case. The combat is too simplified and stale, which has been the case with the other entries in the series, but at least they had a decent story and more than one character you could control. This game just isn't worth your time, just wait for the FFX remaster, or FFXV to come out. Expand
  7. Feb 19, 2014
    0
    In a word: "shovelware." Extremely disjointed and obtuse story elements compound the many problems of an already poorly written plotline; rather, a poorly localized plotline, marred by inconsistencies, contradictions and apparent fanservice that goes awry the minute the models start moving. Technical issues abound including many npcs clipping through each other to an increasingly staggering framerate likely due to a possible memory leak, poor lighting and poor collision only heighten the disjointed presentation.
    Square-Enix plastered "IT ALL ENDS HERE" on the back of the XBOX box for Lightning's return. . . .
    -Let's hope so! :(
    Expand

See all 38 User Reviews