10. Final Fantasy VIII
The awkward middle child of the Final Fantasy family, Final Fantasy VIII tries to be a lot things at once: a political drama, a coming-of-age tale, a love story, and a worthy successor to Final Fantasy VII. While it stumbles a few times in its ambitious efforts, what it does right, it does right, and that's worth more than a participation trophy.
First off, one would be hard-pressed to deny how good the game looks. The graphical improvements between FFVII and FFVIII are downright stunning, and FFVIII features gorgeous cinematic sequences and shockingly realistic modeling given the PS1 hardware. These are used to great effect in fleshing out a colorful world, but even when the graphics shift for regular ol' exploration, the world is nonetheless enthralling to explore. In terms of gameplay, the Junction system can be hit or miss, but it allows for a vast range of customizations and dynamic strategy. While perhaps FFVIII wasn't what everyone was expecting, in the end, the game that wasn't FFVII-2 turned out to be pretty good all on its own.
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