A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster is a pairing of two classic role-playing games that were originally released over a decade ago. These complex and lengthy games feature plenty of over-the-top fantasy combat involving magic and swords, but stop short of showing any blood or gore during battle. Their protagonists -- there are several in both games -- are complex characters dealing with difficult problems, and they rely on one another for guidance, support, and help. Note that many of the female characters in both games wear revealing clothing, and that one scene involves a lightly suggestive massage.
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What's it about?
FINAL FANTASY X/X-2 HD REMASTER puts two classic Japanese role-playing games -- Final Fantasy X and its direct narrative sequel Final Fantasy X-2 -- in a single package, adding a light coat of modern graphical gloss to make them shine a bit brighter when played on modern consoles and HD televisions. The first game establishes the world of Spira, a planet in perpetual fear of a towering menace known as Sin. Players control a handful of heroes who band together with the goal of becoming powerful enough to put an end to Sin once and for all. The sequel picks up two years after events in the first game, with a company of female protagonists -- including some familiar faces -- exploring a world slowly recovering from a millennium spent living in fear of Sin. Both games feature a traditional but intricate turn-based combat system that evolves and grows more complex over time, with players earning more powerful abilities as they develop their party. Lengthy stretches of battle are punctuated by animated and voice acted story sequences that flesh out character histories while setting the table for potential conflicts between various factions. Combined, the two games deliver well over 100 hours of fantasy action.
Is it any good?
Few works age well in the fast-paced, technology-driven medium of video games, but Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy X-2 are exceptions to the rule. Neither game is visually on par with more modern role-playing games, but they're by no means ugly. More importantly, their stories are just as compelling now as they were over a decade ago. From a sports star coming to terms with the lack of affection he received from his drunken father as a child to a young summoner shouldering the unbearable responsibility of being charged with saving the world, the games' characters earn our sympathy from the start and stay interesting throughout. But it's the battle system that's held up best over the years. Sophisticated and satisfying, it allows players to grow their characters as they like while forcing them to think strategically and make proper use of the many skills at their disposal -- especially during memorable boss fights. For players who've ever wondered what all the fuss is over Japanese role-playing games in general or Final Fantasy in particular, this is a great place to start.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the depiction of women in games. Many modern games take a more progressive view towards female characters than games from even a few years ago. What do you think prompted this? Is it because more women are making games, or that more female gamers are speaking out on the sort of characters they'd like to see?
Families can also discuss the impact of violence in media. Why do you think so many games attempt to entertain players with violence? Does excessive violence take away from or keep you from enjoying a game's story?
- Platforms: PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita
- Subjects: Hobbies: collecting
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: applying information, decision-making, strategy
- Price: $39.99
- Available online? Not available online
- Developer: Square Enix
- Release date: March 18, 2014
- Genre: Role Playing
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Friendship
- ESRB rating: T for Mild Blood, Mild Language, Suggestive Themes, Violence
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