Final Fantasy 15 Review

Final Fantasy 15: A Beautiful Fusion of Fantasy Meeting Reality

Short (Non-Spoilery) Synopsis of Final Fantasy 15

Final Fantasy 15 takes place in a world called Eos. You play as Prince Noctis, who is taking a road trip to meet-up with his long-time friend and future wife-to-be, Luna. Alongside his advisor Ignis, his personal guard Gladiolus, and his best friend Prompto, Noctis’s peaceful journey takes a wild turn when his hometown is attacked and his father murdered.

At this point things get a little spoilery. The condensed, mostly spoiler-free version? Noctis must rise and prove himself to be the ruler he was meant to become. The shady guy becomes purely evil and threatens Noctis’s position as King. The entire world becomes shrouded in darkness – literally – and Noctis must find a way to defeat the evil and bring light back to the world.

Want to see the game in action? Check out the "Final Fantasy XV Official Accolades Trailer"!

Overall Story – A New, but Familiar Departure

Final Fantasy 15 takes a departure from previous entries in the series by adding a thick layer of realism to the fantasy aspect. There are still familiar things to veterans of the series, such as summons and chocobos. There’s no direct connection to previous Final Fantasy entries though, making it a great starting game for anyone new to the series.

I personally found the overall story a little flat and predictable; I was also left with some unanswered questions and feelings of loose ends upon completion. Despite this, it is still a solid entry in the Final Fantasy series.

Beautiful Cinematics

It’s apparent that a lot of love and dedication went into creating the cinematics. They have a movie-esque quality to them – they are beautiful to watch, and do a solid job of moving the story forward.

Promotional material of Noctis and his friends getting into formation.


Final Fantasy games are known for their in-depth storylines and strongly-written characters, and the newest entry is no exception. The main storyline is pretty linear and requires you to go from point A to point B. There is an abundance of side quests though that help mix things up and allow you to really explore the vast world.

The adventure’s not only limited to fighting – each boy’s hobby plays a significant role as well. Their hobbies can improve stats, help gain better items after battle, and provide memories of the journey (as well as rake in tons of gil). 

The Quest System

There are hours upon hours of side quests in Final Fantasy 15 that are provided to expand the lore regarding Eos, and they are varying in nature. Some quests require pictures to be taken; others require item procurement for cooking. There are also the standard “Go Beat This Monster” types as well. The varying gameplay makes the game not feel stale.

The World of Eos

The world in Final Fantasy 15, named Eos, is huge. The open-world environment provides a variety of areas to discover and explore, ranging from huge cities to small establishments, or desert areas to dense forests. The main mode of transportation, the Regalia, can be customized to your own personal tastes and is a reliable vehicle as you trek around Eos. Every time you visit a new area, you also receive the option to ‘fast travel’ back to it later – this becomes extremely useful later on for completionists like me, who want to finish everything before moving onto the final battle.

Noctis fighting valiently against a ghostly samurai.

Engaging Combat System

The turn-based system is nowhere to be found in Final Fantasy 15. Instead, it uses something more akin to that found in the Kingdom Hearts series, called an Open Combat system. This allows players to move seamlessly in and out of combat, which makes for a more engaging playing experience. There are lots of ways to develop the boys to your preferred fighting style.

Previous Final Fantasy games gave the player the ability to summon at will. During the main story, you’ll be able to gain the classic summon ability as well. However, these powerful monsters, named “Astrals”, can be called to aid you in battle only after meeting certain battle conditions. This can be frustrating, since they might or might not show up when you need them most.

Realistic Dialogue and Sounds

The solid voice acting and dialogue choices helps bring out the personalities of all the characters. While the overall soundtrack isn’t quite as memorable as previous entries, there is an option to play music from these previous entries as you drive around Eos.

Protagonists, Villains, and Every NPC In-Between

One of the best things about Final Fantasy 15 is how easy it is to feel for the rest of the crew besides Noctis. Each one has a very distinct personality – Ignis is the responsible father-type figure, Gladiolus is the strong, tough-talking one, and Prompto is the kind, energetic newbie. There are a slew of other memorable characters as well, such as Sidney the mechanic, Aranea the almost-but-not-quite Dragoon, and Iris, Gladiolus’s cute, butt-kicking kid sister. 

The villain of Final Fantasy 15, Ardyn, ruins Noctis's road trip. But, he does have a pretty cool hat.

The villain, Ardyn, is a formidable foe with a surprising twist to his character. He goes from being chummy with Noctis and his pals to downright evil. He may not be on the same tier of the memorability scale as say Sephiroth, but he makes a great effort in trying, and it’s noticeable.

Finally, without giving too much away, I want to mention Luna. She is the catalyst of the story, and a very important character who I feel was severely underused. I wish we could have used her awesome abilities in battle. Maybe my wish will come true in a future DLC…

Graphics Courtesy of the Luminous Engine

Final Fantasy 15 uses the Luminous Engine which enables the CGI-rendered cutscenes to transition to regular gameplay without drastically effecting the graphics. It’s a true treat for the eyes.

Standard Price

The base game will set you back $60, the average price for a console game. For a more thorough experience, you’ll also need to either grab a season pass ($25), which will net you all of the current and future DLC, or you can choose to download extra DLC individually as it’s released (typically $5 apiece).

Final Score

Although a strong entry in the Final Fantasy series, there were parts that fell flat, and parts that didn’t really go anywhere at all. On a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the best, I give it an 8. 

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Don't blame the healer. You can call me Lexi. I enjoy playing video games - a lot. Now, I want to make my own! I've got a long journey ahead, but now, I don't have to do it alone.
Gamer Since: 1998
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Overwatch
Top 3 Favorite Games:Remember Me, Resident Evil 6, Mass Effect 2