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Final Fantasy III - updated hands-on

We're in the middle of an old-school Final Fantasy renaissance. This time last year FFIV appeared on the Game Boy Advance, and this very week we'll see FFV make its GBA debut - but next week, the only Fantasy to never make the leap across the Pacific arrives with a totally new look, sound and presentation.

Originally released on the Famicom in 1990 (that's the Japanese NES, just so you know), FFIII comes to DS with completely redone graphics that put in on par with Final Fantasy VII - maybe better.

All the classic, bleepy blorpy tunes have been remastered into solid arrangements that'll be stuck in your head for weeks. If there's an aesthetic aspect to consider reshaping, this Fantasy has it covered.

What hasn't changed, however, is the unforgiving gameplay. This has more in common with the first NES title than it does the plot-heavy, character-driven games we've seen over the past 10 years. Battles are the random, turn-based variety and there's not a lot of depth to them - fighters swing away, mages hurl spells and that's about it. Caves and dungeons are dangerous areas that offer no save spots or ways to restore your hit and magic points - those have to be done in town at inns and special reviving ponds.

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