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Final Fantasy Type-0 HD Review

Square Enix have been mining their back catalogue of late, brining together some of the more well remembered Final Fantasy titles and trying to remind us that they used to make some great games and for the majority these HD updates have been impressive. Final Fantasy Type-0 HD is all together different though as many gamers over on this side of the world would not have played it, with it only being released back in 2011 for the Japanese PSP market.

With the hype for Final Fantasy XV slowly building there is still a while to wait so this updated instalment is the ideal remedy to quash those Chocobo blues; but this far from being your normal Final Fantasy experience, yes we have long running cutscenes, lush visuals and the summoning of godlike creatures, but the gameplay itself is something I have not come across in a Final Fantasy game before, and I quite like it. 

The world of Orience has been ravaged by war, the lands split into four cultures, each protecting a crystal that grants their people great knowledge and power. The Militesi Empire however has brought war to the lands, taking over the various cities and that is where we join the story, with the Dominion of Rubrum under attack, the crystal that grants the citizens magical powers has been blocked by the Militesi, leaving them powerless and massacred by the invading war machines. In classic Final Fantasy style we are taken though some emotional and harrowing cutscenes, setting the game up to be one of the more darker tales from the series.

All is not lost however as a group of fresh faced youngsters known as Class Zero are somehow still able to use their magical powers, turning the tide of this battle to their favour and saving the city and thanks to their brave actions, the rulers of the Dominion of Rebrum have placed them on the front lines, the spearhead of this brutal war that the Militesi Empire brought to them.

Even though ready for battle your class are still students and so quite a bit of your time will be spent at the Vermillion Peristylium (academy), where the powerful crystal resides and what is essentially Class Zero's school where they are expected to get in more training in preparation for the many battles ahead with lessons taught in the classroom or the training arena.

Final Fantasy Type-0 HD is split into two main segments, downtime and the mission days themselves. In-between missions you are allotted a certain amount of downtime that allows you to wander freely around the Peristylium and the surrounding buildings, chatting to the inhabitants, taking school lessons, capturing and breeding Chocobos, shopping for new items, organising your class mates and taking part in mini-events which reduce the time left to the next main mission but also adding a little more depth to the world and plus they grant you extra items or stat bonuses. As a whole the Peristylium is initially an overwhelming and interesting place for you to take in however the feeling of awe soon wears off as you waste far too much game time just wandering around the halls trying to find the next event.

Once you have carried out all of the side events during your downtime the mission day is then announced and this is when the real action begins. With a whole class of pupils to choose from there is a wealth of characters to play as, each one having their own unique weapons and special moves and though this seems like a lot at first, each one is so well designed that they all have a purpose. Before heading out to battle there are a few decisions to make, selecting your team of three for the field and picking their support if one falls in battle. Here you can go for your personal favourites like Ace and his playing cards, Sice and her huge scythe, Nine and his lance or Seven and her whip. With only three to play as initially this can be a hard choice if not for the game also "suggesting" a team by grouping together characters and boosting their powers if in battle together.

As mentioned earlier, the action in Final Fantasy Type-0 HD is quite far removed from any Final Fantasy games I have played in the past; gone are the turn based mechanics, now replaced with fierce third person combat with you being able to switch between your three characters and utilise each of their powers. With an assortment of offensive and defensive powers and easy to use lock-on and dodging manoeuvres this part of the game is a blast to play, especially when you can also sacrifice a character to summon and even control an Eidolon, a huge war god that will allow you decimate everything around you.

The mission days are not just all out beat-em-up style action as Final Fantasy Type-0 HD also adds a little light tactical warfare into the mix, with certain missions requiring you to assist in sieges of enemy strongholds. Here there will be a constant barrage of your troops flowing out of friendly encampments with your job being to direct them to the correct target, assisting wave after wave of troops until they break the enemies defences, surrounding their controlled city and allowing you to take on whatever boss lurks within.

Being a HD update of a PSP title the team behind this version have done a sterling job in bringing the graphics and cut scenes up to a high standard and adding some beautiful touches like when in battle the camera focuses on the enemy you target, putting everything else slightly out of focus; however there are a few areas that let it down, with the characters looking a bit rigid at times, their facial expressions set in stone. The biggest issue is the motion blur, as even though a new camera system has been implemented, when you move it around the background just feels off, a blur of colours that makes it hard just not to throw up.

Apart the pacing issues during the downtime this game had me hooked with its steady unlocking of new powers and abilities to play with those ever impressive Eidolon summons. Final Fantasy Type-0 HD is a great title for both followers of the Square Enix games and action game fans that have yet to try a Final Fantasy game.

Word by Ash Buchanan.

(Version Tested: PS4)


+ HD update of a Japan only PSP game.
+ Third person action.
+ Loads of powers to use and upgrade.
+ Get to play as summoned War Gods.


- Motion blur is vomit inducing.

Edited On 24 Mar, 2015

( 2 )
Turniplord's avatar
Turniplord 2 years ago
**(Version Tested: PC)** - should that be PS4? :P I was thinking of buying this but I don't know i I have time to play it. Looks like a very long in-depth game and I've barely touched DA because I can't devote time to it :/
Kaysar's avatar
Kaysar 2 years ago
From what I've read, it requires at least two play through's to complete everything. However, you can bump up the difficulty by 30 levels so as to keep the challenge. I've enjoyed what little I've played of it and I think, until FF15 comes out, it'll be my long slow played RPG for this year

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