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Wednesday, January 3, 2024

Dissidia Final Fantasy NT

The third game in the Dissidia franchise overall and its first entry in HD, and like the previous two it's an arena combat game with a plethora of Final Fantasy characters and elements to utilize.  NT revamps the gameplay into a three-on-three free-to-play online combat experience; 'free-to-play' of course meaning "you can get a small handful of features at no cost but if you want to use most of the characters and weapon sets, you gotta pay up".  Thankfully there is a season pass available that grants you most of the game's content for around $30 (substantially less if you happen to buy while it's on sale) and a Deluxe Edition that includes all the characters, though there are also an awful lot of extra weapon packs and costumes available, making it easy to feel like you're being nickel-and-dimed. The core gameplay remains solid enough, based around juggling Brave and dealing HP damage and trying to be the first team to score three knockouts.  New additions include equippable Materia to cast spells, which have supportive effects like poisoning enemies or recovering some HP over time.  Summons replace the Assists from Duodecim; your team builds a meter by either landing blows, taking damage, charging via the touchpad or destroying Summoning Cores, and once the gauge is full you can pull off a summon, which can provide powerful buff effects on your team or deal heavy damage to the enemy.  Another game mode called 'Core Battle' is added to complement the multiplayer focus - somewhat similar to 'Capture the Flag', one must drive the enemy's teammates away from their core and destroy it before the same happens to theirs.  It's a pretty fun game if you have some friends to play with (and against), but the minimal single player experience and battles always involving teams of three may be a deal breaker to some longtime fans of Dissidia.

(Also dare I say Square Enix should get some tips on animating faces from Team Ninja?)

Developer: Team Ninja
Publisher: Square Enix
Released: 2015, 2018, 2019
Platforms: Arcade, Playstation 4, PC