World of Final Fantasy was my first real experience with the Final Fantasy series. I fell in love almost as soon as I saw it; everything about it was adorable, from the character design to the Pokémon-meets-Chiquita-Banana combat style.
It didn’t take me long at all to finish the main story. Which, by the way, broke my heart completely.
Today, World of Final Fantasy Maxima hits the shelves. It’s the first real update the game has gotten since its release in 2016—and it’s exciting for a few reasons!
This trailer does contain spoilers from the original game, so if you haven't finished it, brace yourself!
It’s expanding to the Nintendo Switch and Xbox One
Wait, why is that exciting?
Well, other than the fact that it opens up a lot of possibilities for folks without PlayStation products, it’s a big step forward for Square Enix in terms of its relationship with Nintendo.
See, the first Final Fantasy game was actually released in December 1987 for the NES as a last-ditch effort to rescue Square from impending bankruptcy.
Fun fact: That’s actually how the games got their name—they were the company’s last dream of success.
Obviously, the game was a huge success, and a total of six games came out for NES and SNES.
But then it all changed.
Originally, Final Fantasy VII was supposed to come out on the N64—but because Nintendo had chosen to stay with cartridges in the console’s design, it wasn’t going to be able to run the intense cinematic scenes the game developers wanted to make.
So Square switched to PlayStation and its CD-ROM set-up, forsaking Nintendo completely.
It wasn’t until XIII that Square Enix looked outside of PlayStation, expanding to the Xbox 360. It reverted back to PlayStation/PC for XIV, and released XV on Xbox One with its original release in 2016.
But this is the first time since VI that Square Enix has released a Final Fantasy game on Nintendo.
Sidebar, can I be that person for a second and point out that the Switch uses cartridges?
It’s getting new mirages
Mirages, the visions of critters from across the Final Fantasy universe, are the foundation of the game’s combat style. Basically, you run around, capture creatures, and stack ‘em on your head to do battle.
It’s so great.
There are hundreds to catch in the game, but Maxima is adding a few to the roster:
- Mel, an S-sized mirage with Thunderbolt
- Dramuth, an S-sized mirage with Petit Flare
- Shiva Ixion, an L-sized mirage with Icicle Turn
- Syldra, an L-sized mirage with Mega Thunder Storm
Mel and Dramuth will be familiar to those of you who played the mobile version, World of Final Fantasy Meli-Melo.
Champions are getting some changes, too
Throughout the story, Lann and Reynn have the ability to stand in for iconic Final Fantasy characters in battle, and unlock them as Champion summonings that work an awful lot like eikons in other Final Fantasy games.
There are two big changes happening here.
One, new champions are on the roster. The only one I could find details of was Noctis, who of course comes with his own fishing minigame, but I fully expect there’ll be others!
Two, you can now actually play as these champions.
Rather than just taking their place, it looks like Maxima will let you play through epic fights as characters like Lightning and Yuna (who is apparently also getting a big redesign for her upcoming X-2 reboot next year).
You can battle Enna Kros
She’s the mysterious lady who shows up to disrupt Lann and Reynn’s idyllic life at the beginning of the game, and she helps them through their entire journey to finding out who they really are.
Now, when you reach a certain point in the story, you’ll be able to challenge Enna Kros to battle at the coffee shop where it all began!
World of Final Fantasy Maxima is available for Nintendo Switch and Xbox One today. For those of you who, like me, have a version for PS4, Vita, and PC, it’s also being released as a paid DLC. Now pardon me while I go get lost in the world of Final Fantasy!