The Shockingly Hard Best to Worst Ranked Final Fantasy Games

Hey. I've played pretty much* every Final Fantasy game. Which one is the best? Which is the worst? Why are you asking me? You're just going to disagree anywhere. But I'm game. Let's do this.
 
*I have not played anywhere near all the Final Fantasy games. Seriously. Have you seen how many of those Chronicles there are?

List items

  • Alright. I admit it. This game is pretty great in retrospect. At first I disliked the setting compared witht he more traditional fantasy of IV, but hey, I was a kid, and I was used to these games having a relatively steady world. The writing is only great if you compare it with the initial US translation of IV (II) and VII, though.

  • Yep, I do like the Final Fantasy VIIs. Sure, now I can realize that the plot made no sense whatsoever, and the translation was terrible. But the game looked great. The fights, summons, and character designs were all iconic in a way the series has been incapable of recreating since. And, hey, I got a pre-order of this to my 18th birthday, so there's not really any way others in the series can compare with that kind of positive nostalgia.

  • Speaking of nostalgia - this game knocked my 12 year old socks off with its incredible music and presentation. The script is even worse than VII's in the original 1991 release, but the game was damn fun. Great combat, fun characters, and a huge assortment of dungeons made this a relatively epic production for a console game.

  • I like XII. I like it quite a bit. Not that I can fully understand the Gambit system (it always seems like I could be doing so much more with it) but what I can grasp of it seems like a streamlined cross between X and XI. Plus a great world, excellent cinematics, and some of the best post-PS1 characters that the series offers.

  • Really VIII and IX should be a tie. Both excel in areas the opposite lacks. VIII's strengths are some excellent set-pieces, amazing environments, and a very, very strong opening disc. Its weaknesses? A meandering story, a levelling mechanic which can make it very possible to screw yourself over by the last disc, and a freakin' high school musical you have to put on. The draw system is unique, and matches well with the junctioning and summoning mechnanic. Shame you can't get Squall out of your party though.

  • On the other hand, IX starts off very slowly, and has an off-putting graphical style that the Crystal Chronicles series ran with. However, the characters aren't a bunch of whiny assholes, and the story gets progressively more interesting while always being completely comprehensible.

  • XIII is a tricky one to place. On the one hand, the combat is fantastic. On the other, several chapters are complete wastes of time. The story has some very moving moments, but then can sputter out for hours on end. Lightning and crew are mostly likeable, with Vanille being the only real standout cast member - Snow, Sazh, and Hope just squeak by as being tolerable. If only Lightning weren't so petulant and moody, she would have brought more to the game.

  • No one is moody in Final Fantasy X-2. I love this game, but I can never manage to play it more than for five or six hours. Not sure what keeps me from really diving into it... perhaps it's never finishing X?