We’re starting the Let’s Review series of Let’s Play reviews off with a bang! Up first is Mega64’s very own Final Fantasy III Screenshot Let’s Play. The Final Fantasy franchise is pretty famous in the gaming world. For many, the franchise is regarded as one of the best Japanese Role-Playing Game series ever made. In particular, Final Fantasy VII is often considered the peak of the series. It was this title that made Final Fantasy a big name here in the west, but what about the titles before it?
Well, this is where the number ordering becomes slightly more convoluted. Final Fantasy IV was known as Final Fantasy II in the west, and likewise Final Fantasy VI was known as Final Fantasy III in the west. This isn’t helped when the follow up to III in the west happened to be VII. Essentially, this means Final Fantasy III may refer to either the third or the sixth title.
At this stage, every numbered Final Fantasy game has been, eventually, released in English multiple times, with one exception. The original Final Fantasy III has only ever re-surfaced once, on the Nintendo DS. For many fans of the NES version, the DS remake was just lacking. Between the slow pacing of the battles, the ultimate classes becoming crippled, and one of the most memorable moments in the game losing most of it’s impact, Final Fantasy III for the DS was pretty shitty. So what about the original “superior” edition? That remained forever unreleased in English – at least officially. Fortunately, many fan translations of the original do exist on the internet.
In Mega64’s Let’s Play, the gaming experience is expressed fairly well. This was my own first experience with the original title, and I experienced a sense of wonder in the previously referenced scene – even in a Screenshot Let’s Play – through the Let’s Player’s portrayal. On top of sharing a rare game that, frankly, deserves far more attention that it gets instead of being forgotten in time, the Let’s Play is filled with moments of sheer comedy gold.
Before Mega64 began the Let’s Play, the users of the Something Awful forums were asked for the names of the characters. This resulted in Stalin being the hero of the tale, accompanied by the ghosts of his predecessors. And so begins Stalin’s journey in his fight against capitalism, as he fights corrupt monarchy after corrupt monarchy.
The Let’s Play also gives players a glimpse into the mechanics running in the background as he explains, in a little more depth than the game manual itself, the class system. Particularly the hidden aspect of how a character’s growth is calculated. Mega64 explains strategies fairly well, as well as expressing the reasons of his failure whenever he dies. However, unlike the most terrible kind of Let’s Player, Mega64 edits out the deaths unless they add substance to his work. Usually, the Mega64 would passively explain whether he died before, how many times he died and why, while carrying on with the dungeon in the successful run. And can I stress again just how humorous the entire Let’s Play is?
It’s honestly a brilliant Let’s Play, and anyone who has yet to experience Final Fantasy III in it’s original form should read through this. It’s an absolute classic.