Final Fantasy IV Review
Final Fantasy IV box art
System: DS Review Rating Legend
Dev: Matrix Software 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Square Enix 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Jul. 21, 2008 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-2 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+ 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Content is not limited to the single-player story, though it does have the lion's share. After encountering a character called Fat Chocobo, players will have access to the Music Box, Event Theater, Training, and Wireless Battles. The Music Box allows you to listen to the original score (even with the DS lid closed), and the Event Theater allows you to relive unlocked cutscenes.

Final Fantasy IV screenshot

The Training mini-games are for improving the characteristics of your Summoner's Eidolon, Whyt (a small, white creature that can be summoned to fight automatically at great cost to magic points). Depending upon how well you score in the mini-games, Whyt's attributes (strength, speed, stamina, intellect, and spirit) will increase accordingly. In addition to improving abilities, players can also change the look of their Eidolon with the makeover editing tool. Not only will the improved Whyt help you in the single-player campaign, but he will also help you with the Wireless Battles.

These two-player duels require two cartridges. Each player gives their Eidolon a series of battle commands via the abilities menu. With these commands in their arsenal, the Eidolons will duke it out automatically until one of them is KO'd. Sadly, these additional game facets feel rather tacked-on. They certainly don't hamper the overall experience, but they don't add anything either.

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Presentation in FFIV has gotten a big boost over previous versions. The 3D dungeons and quirky character animations are a real boon to the overall quality of the title. Sadly, the CG movies and other cutscenes are far too pixelated for my liking. I think most people will still greatly enjoy them, but the blocky and unsaturated look is a bit unrefined. Thankfully, the chunkiness is easily set aside, and the functionality of the dual screen presentation is perfect for the title. So too is the expertly remixed and re-mastered music, which succinctly portrays the mood of the adventure and the feel of the story. The only tiny complaint with sound I have is with the voice over work. While I enjoyed the occasional conversations, I think the voice acting could have been a bit more polished. A mix of English accents would have more accurately captured the lofty prose.

Final Fantasy IV is a real gem of an RPG. The new DS version is definitely the best way to enjoy the title and should provide fans with hours of fun. However, if you are not intrigued by the world and basic mechanics of Final Fantasy, you still will not enjoy this title. For everyone else, even at $40, this is a must-buy RPG for the DS!

By Jonathan Marx
CCC Editor / News Director

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.9
Graphics
The visuals are almost great. I loved the detailed 3D dungeons, but the CG movies and other cutscenes are far too pixelated.
4.8
Control
Moving through the world, exploring dungeons, and initiating attacks during combat are as easy as can be. The only misstep to be found were negotiating the lengthy item lists while fighting.
4.4
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The music does a great job of portraying the adventure and feel of the story. While I enjoyed the occasional conversations, I think the voice acting could have been a bit better.
4.1

Play Value
The story is very entertaining, the game is full of great characters, and combat is far more engaging than it is in the title's predecessors. That said, this is a game for core RPG enthusiasts.

4.3
Overall Rating - Great
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Witness the dramatic and thrilling story of this mythical game world brought to life through astounding 3D graphics, gorgeous CG cutscenes, and top-notch voice acting.
  • Create a versatile party using the all-new Augment System - a dynamic system that allows the player to assign special abilities to characters.
  • Dive into the first RPG to incorporate the innovative Active Time Battle system, now further enhanced and refined for the Nintendo DS.
  • Listen to a beautifully remixed score by world-renowned composer Nobuo Uematsu that breathes new life into some of the most beloved FINAL FANTASY themes.
  • Navigate effortlessly through the game with Nintendo DS Touch Screen functionality and stylus-driven controls while receiving vital assistance via the dual-screen presentation.
  • Train and customize Whytkin by playing a variety of mini-games and challenge another player to head-to-head battle via local wireless connection.


  • Screenshots / Images
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