Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age is a high-definition remake of Final Fantasy XII, which was originally released on the PlayStation 2 in 2006.
A great era of peace and prosperity is fading. The stability bestowed upon Ivalice in the founding days of the Dynast-King has been darkened by the likelihood of war between empires. Rozarria and Archadia seem destined to collide, crushing whatever stands between them.
Indeed, the Archadian push west toward Rozarria has already consumed Nabradia and its sibling sovereignty, the small, peaceful Kingdom of Dalmasca. FINAL FANTASY XII opens with a quick glimpse of the last throes of pre-Imperial Dalmasca and its desperate fight for freedom, followed by an equally desperate negotiation for peace. In the opening tutorial mission, you participate in a final, fateful attempt to deliver land and king from the clutches of Archadian domination.
Fast forward two years: In the Dalmascan capital city of Rabanastre, a new consul, Vayne Solidor, son of the Archadian emperor, arrives with a message of hope and renewal for the citizens of that subjugated land. However, his silver-tongued speech doesn’t fully convince Vaan, an orphaned street boy who sees the Empire as a thieving bully that has robbed his country of wealth and dignity.
Vaan dreams of escape, seeing his future in the skies as a sky pirate. First, though, he wants some measure of revenge. His bold attempt to infiltrate the Royal Palace during the consul’s inaugural fete to take back some of the treasure that belongs to Dalmasca leads Vaan straight into the clasp of a destiny none could foresee. It is a destiny that includes an exhilarating adventure in the company of sky pirates, a princess, and a great fallen Knight of the Order. As such, the tale begins.
- Zodiac Job System: In a huge change to the original game, there are now 12 jobs to choose from. Once a character selects a job, it can never be changed, but each character can also add a second job to further specialize or diversify their abilities.
- Controllable Guest Characters and Espers: Before, temporary allies (whether human or supernatural) were outside your control. You couldn't move them around, issue them commands, or alter their gambits. That's all changed. Now you can pilot guests and customize their gambits to your liking. The only thing you can't do is change their equipment. And in addition to being controllable, Espers now stick around much longer!
- Reshuffled Treasure Locations: Treasure chests are in many new locations, are more numerous, and more generous.
- Gambits Unleashed: Instead of receiving more and more gambits throughout the game, now you can simply buy every single gambit pretty early on. This means you can go ahead and make the gambits you want to make, rather than having to wait till much later in the game for the parameters and conditions your party needs.
- Some Item and Enemy Changes: While there aren't tons of changes, the stats and acquisition methods of some pieces of gear have changed. A handful of enemies also received minor stat or drop changes.
- Map Overlay: During exploration or combat, press L3 to view a map without needing to pause the action.
- Trial Mode: A lengthy gauntlet of 100 arena battles that uses your save info from the main game.
- New Game+ and New Game-: A challenging spin on New Game+ modes in which follow-up playthroughs can be made much easier, starting at level 90…or much harder, with EXP gain disabled, and characters forever stuck at their starting levels.
- Speed Mode: Play at 2x or 4x speed. Greatly reduce the amount of time it takes to traverse large areas, search for treasure, or build up big chains defeating foes.
- Remastered Graphics/Audio: 1080p graphics, modern visual effects, and a re-orchestrated score.
- Auto-save: The most recent zone transition becomes an automatic save point!
- 7.1 Surround Sound