Final Fantasy IV for the Nintendo DS is a complete remake of the original version of the game originally released for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. The DS version was rebuilt from the ground up using the engine originally created by Matrix Software for the DS remake of Final Fantasy III. The game follows the same storyline as that of the original version, but is retold with an all-new translation, 3D graphics and FMV cinematics, and voice acting during cutscenes.
Unlike the SNES version of Final Fantasy IV, there is no "Easy Type" edition of the game. The DS version was released in all regions with the same content and level of difficulty.
The story of Final Fantasy IV on the DS is unchanged from previous versions of the game. To learn about the plot, read the Story section of the original Final Fantasy IV page.
Much of the gameplay is similar to Final Fantasy IV. Read the Gameplay section of the original Final Fantasy IV page for more details. However, there are also some significant changes made for the DS version, and these include:
Though difficult to specifically catalog, Final Fantasy IV on DS sports notably more difficult battles than the previous versions. Enemies seem to hit harder, drop less gold, and offer fewer experience points. Certain creatures have also developed new habits that render them more difficult to fight, such as the Antlion, who sports a new, vicious counter-attack on top of its standard counter.
While in previous versions, a large number of abilities were exclusive to one particular character, the DS remake allows abilities to be learnt by any character through augments. Augments can be collected through story-based events, by revisiting an old dungeon or town, by completing sidequests, or by other means. Characters can learn as many augments as the player gives them, though only four abilities can be active in battle at any one time per character, not including the auto-battle feature. The fifth slot goes to items.
Namingway no longer has the ability to change character names. Instead, he is now the focus of a new series of sidequests, in which the player must hunt him down in various locations as the game progresses. The player is rewarded with a few augments. His appearance has also been changed to that of a rabbit.
Rydia gains a new Eidolon named Whyt. This Eidolon is unique in that he fights in Rydia's place, and that his stats and abilities can be improved by performing well in a collection of new minigames. The player can also customize Whyt's face by drawing him a new one with the stylus. Whyt's family lives in the Feymarch, the land of the Eidolons.
While exploring dungeons, the bottom DS screen typically displays an empty map that automatically fills in as the player wanders around unexplored areas of the floor. When the map for the floor is complete, the player receives a small reward. Uncovering each map of each dungeon in the entire game will yield the Treasure Hunter augment.
The Fat Chocobo is no longer used to store excess items. Instead, the player may summon him in certain areas to access the game's bestiary, listen to the game's soundtrack, or view previously seen cutscenes.
New Game Plus
A New Game Plus option is available upon completion of the game, allowing the player to start a new playthrough but with several things carrying over and the offer of fighting two new special bosses. The following are carried over from the previous playthrough:
- Rare items: These include dark matter, tails, armor from tails, and any unused apples and soma drops.
- Augments: Unused augments will remain in the inventory (this includes the Limit Break augment given as a reward for finishing the game); used ones will remain applied to all of the characters.
- Namingway sidequests: Any progress made on the Namingway sidequests is saved.
- Map completion: Map completion statistics are retained.
- Fat Chocobo statistics: The bestiary and minigame scores are all retained.
- Item drop summons: Summons dropped by enemies are kept.
Everything else is not carried over. This includes gil, levels, and every other inventory item. Because the Namingway sidequests and map completion stats are saved, this means that rewards and augments from these can only be obtained once. However, the player can collect every other augment again.
There are two "superboss" fights available in a New Game Plus playthrough: Geryon and Proto-Babil. Geryon can only be fought after defeating the four archfiends in the Giant of Babil. To confront the boss, either examine the space where the archfiends were in the Giant of Babil or the tombstone in the summit of Mount Ordeals.
The second boss, Proto-Babil, requires dark matter - an item only obtained by stealing from the final boss - to be used on the face-like rock on the moon's surface.
Final Fantasy IV on the DS presents key events of its story in a significantly different way by showing fully rendered cutscenes with voice acting. These events include:
Warning: This list contains major spoilers.
- Cecil's return from Mysidia
- Cecil and Rosa's conversation before Mist
- Cecil and Kain arriving at Mist
- Inside Damcyan Castle
- Edward in Kaipo at night
- Meeting Yang on the way to Fabul
- Fabul's Crystal chamber
- Leviathan's appearance
- Cecil becoming a paladin
- Palom and Porom saving Cecil's party
- Kain proposing an exchange
- Golbez's second encounter
- Yang destroying the cannons
- The escape from the underworld
- Edge confronting Rubicante
- The Lunar Whale appearing
- Entering the Giant of Babil
- Confronting the four archfiends
- The Golbez revelation
- Traveling to the moon the final time
- Fighting Zemus
- The aftermath of killing Zeromus