Published on July 8th, 2012 | by Rusty4
Review: The Last Story
Developer: Mistwalker, AQ Interactive
Publisher: Nintendo, XSEED Games (NA)
Release Date: February 23, 2012 (AUS), February 24, 2012 (EU), August 14, 2012 (NA)
Throughout the game you play as Zael the main protagonist, as well at times his allies, a band of mercenaries trying to find fame and fortune, however ultimately, playing to help Zael of reaching his goal of becoming a Knight. The Last Story is not your typical RPG. It has you playing a thrilling tale of 43 chapters, or if you prefer something with a bit more action it also features Online Multiplayer, where you can decide to play online with/or against friends. The time for each chapter varies depending on the said chapter; some can be as quick as 10 minutes where as others could be up to 30-40 minutes long, especially the boss fights. This provides the player with a high level of customisation, in both items and character appearance. This is done by the many blacksmiths that exist throughout the game, enabling weapons upon upgrade to get new abilities; and buying dye from sellers, allowing a player to choose the colour scheme for characters and their equipment. The possibilities of character development become quite substantial, meaning that it is highly unlikely that another person would have the same as you.
The story is told like any true JRPG, through a variety of cut scenes, dialogue and player choices. For a game that is played on a console that has no HD, the designers (Hironobu Sakaguchi and
Takuya Matsumoto), as well as the main artist (Kimihiko Fujisaka) have done an amazing job. The cut scenes are smoothly transitioned; the voice acting/motion scenes are timed pretty well (with some obvious flaws). However, the voice acting can get on your nerves at times, but nowhere near as bad as that of Xenoblade Chronicles, for those that disliked it.
Throughout the game you have a huge amount of freedom to do things, whether it be to complete side quests (some of which count towards the chapters), do some fighting in the arena to level up characters or just engage in the people within the game (some of them tell funny stories).
The fight sequences are quite unique in The Last Story compared to the large amount of JRPG’s available. There is no need to use the typical ‘a button mash’ to execute attacks, as the game is inbuilt with an “auto-attack” feature. Meaning that all you have to do is walk up to your enemy and your character will attack it freely. Awesome right! However, this isn’t all there is to do. As the main protagonist, you command your party on what moves to make, how each fight will be played out, and most importantly, how to defeat those all powerful bosses (some of which can be a bit obnoxious to defeat).
The soundtrack is amazing! With lead composer being Nobuo Uematsu, the lead composer of the majority of the Final Fantasy including the very popular OSTs of Final Fantasy VII and Final Fantasy X, you can expect nothing less than exceptional. The music that has been created for the game ties in perfectly with the mood or setting that the player finds themselves in, whether it is intense battle music, a romantic serenade or just up-tempo town music, it’s all there.
Once the main story is complete there is nothing for you to do on that side of things. However, post-story, the online features open up considerably. However, throughout the story you have the option to re-fight hordes of enemies, meaning that you can level up your characters, get rare item drops, as well as other useful items for later on. There are two options to choose from in the Online Menu, the Co-op feature and the Competitive feature (not the real words, just easy for people to understand). The Co-op feature has you teaming up with up to 5 other people over Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection, where you take on dangerous and tough monsters. Reminiscent of Monster Hunter, for those that have played the series. The Competitive option has you selecting your favourite characters and pitting you against each other in a battle of skill, strategy and power, either individually or with other team mates.
Rating of 4.5/5. Highly recommended for those gamers who like to immerse themselves into a story, albeit a typical JRPG story, with some obvious twists and turns throughout. Will it be worth the price that it will be at upon release, I would say so. The game itself has a lot to offer, especially to RPG enthusiasts. There are some downsides to the game, such as the auto attack feature not enabling you to reach allies in battle at times, and the sometimes long loading times between cut scenes and chapter commencements may put people off, however it is definitely a game where the pros outweigh the cons. Story game play lasts about 20-30 hours depending on how hard you play the game, the repeated amount of battles you fight, as well as the side quests you wish to complete make for a thrilling game. This is a game that is well worth the money you paid for.
Have a look at the English trailer below, and check it out for yourself, what you could be in for.
Just a quick note to make before you guys read on, this is my first review of a game, so any feedback or input that you have to help me improve on my review making skills would be appreciated.