I've only completed 7, 8, and 9. Played a bit of 12, got bored pretty quickly and didn't care for the battle system, and I eventually got around to 6 a couple of years ago (via PSN), but couldn't bear trying to navigate that abysmal world map after about an hour in. It's also been quite a while since I've played the ones I have completed at that, but from my recollection, I always liked 9 the most.
The way I ranked them on my old FF5 blog was like this 6=7>8=9>10>4=5>13>1>12
This changes all the time though. Now it'd be like this 6=7>8=9>10>5>4>13=12>1
6 and 7 I can't pick between. I'd give a different answer depending on the day of the week. 8 and 9 I consider equal, but that's because 8 is inconsistent, the highs are better, the lows are worse. If I pretend that dumb plot twist didn't happen, 8 gets ranked up there with 6 and 7. My opinions about 10 and 5 fluctuate pretty wildly. They could easily switch spots. 4 I replayed earlier this year and like less than I used to. It's aged a bit poorly. The problems I have with 13 are well documented, the fact that it's equal with 12 now is not because I like 13 less, but because it's been a while since I played 12, and I always have to remind myself why I hate that one. Probably not fair to put 1 on the bottom, but ehh. Tactics is great too but I don't really consider it. If I were to add it to the equation it would probably tie with 8 and 9 up there.
Still need to play 2 and 3.
Oh and 13-2 would probably be tied with 4. 10-2 I need to replay, because I gamesharked the fuck out of that mess.
The first one I played between those ages isn't my favourite, nor the one I think is the best. 12 is my fave anyway.
A player's age and their favorite Final Fantasy are directly related. Whichever game came out when you were between the ages of 10 and 15 is the best Final Fantasy.
People always throw this around about games, and yes many of the games we play at that age stick with us real hard, but it's so far from a hard rule.
VIII would be the one I played between 10 and 15 but for me it goes like so:
Tactics > XII > IV > VIII = IX > VI > VII = X > V > III > II > I > XIII
There are a few things I wanted to say as well.
1) It's amazing how many of these polls I've answered in my lifetime.
2) You rarely see roman numerals so much anywhere, much less on the internet
I played my favorite Final Fantasy's when I was like 7. The ones I played for the first time between the ages of ten and fifteen were 10, 10-2, 11, and 12, and I hated all of them but 10, which I still didn't like very much at the time.
@turambar: Which is the worst mechanically then?
@alexw00d: @hunter5024: See for me, I technically played my favorite (Six) when I was 8, but I was 8 and I don't think I had ever really played an RPG before. Even if I had, FF games are teen fiction, I don't know if I would've enjoyed it, I was too busy loving Donkey Kong Country. Wasn't until I got older that I got my hands on it again and adored it.
@hunter5024: As much as I didn't like the lack of character-specific progression, there were elements to the junction system in 8 that I do like. It's less about how you build characters in that game, and more how you 'gear' them. Moving around stacks of Curaga between toons in the same way you would shuffle Mithril Armor around, looking at different combinations of GFs for the optimal configuration. The game lets you define each character's combat role to a way greater degree than you expected on consoles at the time. To that end, there's more gameplay possibilities, but that limits their characterization to a degree. Zell as a brutish boxer looks odd when I assign his best spells to magic.
Also drawing manually was like no fun whatsoever. And enemies levelling up with you would be fine if you could switch Squall out. He always ends up 8 levels higher than everyone else, which boosts the enemies but makes the other characters struggle.
VI by a wide margin. I also really loved IV.
IX would be close to the top of my list, but it really falls apart once you reach the third disc, I think it would have been a better game just ending at that point.
I don't understand the sudden praise for VIII from many. I thought it was still enjoyable, but it's vastly inferior to everything around it. Weak characters, nonsense plot (at least after a certain point, I actually enjoyed a lot of the garden stuff) and awkward gameplay mechanics that even young children found ways to abuse. I don't think it's as bad as the more recent games, but aside from Squall, Laguna and Seifer it really has terrible, terrible characters and literally no development for anyone besides those three (and the latter two are subtle and barely even in the game). Rinoa was especially awful.
It wasn't the first one that was in the home, since my brother had played previous ones prior to it, but the one that got me into it, and is probably my favorite if I had to choose, is FFX. I love the music and the atmosphere. There were quite a few people that disliked twelve, but that was superb to me. I didn't beat it; only got about fifteen hours in, but I really liked the atmosphere of that as well, and the music of Rabanastre is great to me because it fit the setting well. I also think it'd hold up really well with an HD remake. People disliked the story and the majority of the characters from what I remember, and though it may not be as good as the previous ones, I think it was more than adequate from all that I've played of it, and I think it would have only gotten better as I went on.
We've had this thread plenty of times already. I can split the series in half, between games that I'd be interested in playing and games that I'd be interested in mocking.
Final Fantasy V is my favorite, but I will fully acknowledge that VI is the better game. But let's be real: The best Final Fantasy game is the one with the J-Pop, magical costume changing and a complete lack of self-awareness.
I've mentioned this before in past threads asking this same question: The truth is that someone could make a compelling argument to me about pretty much any of the FF games being the best, with only a few exceptions, in my mind, and I'm pretty much open to any of those arguments depending on my mood and depending on the day. Yet, I can't see any kind of compelling argument that II, VIII, or XIII were the best, and I've never actually seen anyone seriously try.
But at least I've seen people defend II and XIII. I have never actually seen anyone give any kind of genuine and actually-truthful defense of VIII. Ever. I've only seen people exclaim at the top of their lungs it's the best Final Fantasy, but never any kind of explanation as to how it's not one of the most mechanically broken and tedious games in the main franchise line, or how the story isn't some sort of awful, incomprehensible hallucination, particularly after Disc 1. It also takes a lot of effort to be a bad love story even by video-game standards, but VIII managed it.
I think X is my favorite, though it took me a lot of time to come to that realization and explain to myself why, and I think if I were to call one of them the "best" it would be that one, as a great melding of old and new, with a story that, bad main character voice aside, actually makes sense and is consistent through and through, and has exceptional pacing. Linear, without taking away too much exploration. The battle system is well thought-out, with an upgrade system that allowed for customization without making all the characters feel virtually identical throughout a normal playthrough (unlike VI, VII, and VIII), and maintaining the depth and incredibly high number of abilities and spells that allowed for different approaches to most situations.
But it doesn't take anything away from many of the others. III is good, IV is good, VI is still very good, VII is still incredible to so many people and I would be foolish to not see why, X-2 is incredible goofy fun, XII is a wonderful experimentation that actually worked instead of being different for different's sake like VIII, XIII-2 actually had an alright story, etc. etc. I've yet to play V and IX, which I regret. I loved XI, and am enjoying playing XIV which I picked up on Black Friday. But.. II, VIII, and XIII. Fuck those games. There are very little redeeming qualities about any of them.