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Final Fantasy III review

So old-school it hurts... but it hurts so good

Final Fantasy III's battle system, arguably the most important part of any RPG, has more in common with the first game than its followers. Here, you input commands for all four characters at once, they all execute those attacks and then you input the next set - any Fantasy you've played past number four unfolds quite a bit differently. With the active time battle system (introduced in IV), commands are constantly being entered and enemies continue to attack even while you're choosing your next move. Since FFIII battles lack the ATB, there's no way to layer attacks or perform complicated assaults - it's an NES-era RPG , after all.

You'd think things like agility and strength would dictate who lives and dies in a battle, but the conventions of modern RPGs don't seem to apply. After one random battle, our thief and white mage stood tall while the knight and dragoon were dead. Why is that? And why would the thief, with speed that outclasses everything else, not always move first? Such discrepancies make it doubly hard to construct a solid battle plan for the nail-biting boss fights.

More Info

GenreRole Playing
DescriptionThe series' last retro classic makes its way west. It's the first with the popular Job System that lets you change classes
Franchise nameFinal Fantasy
UK franchise nameFinal Fantasy
PlatformDS, iPhone, PSP
US censor ratingEveryone 10+
Alternative namesFF III, Final Fantasy 3, Final Fantasy 3
Release date14 November 2006 (US), 1 January 1970 (UK)