Final Fantasy II

Final Fantasy II[a] is a fantasy role-playing video game developed and published by Square (now Square Enix) in 1988 for the Family Computer as the second installment of the Final Fantasy series. The game has received numerous enhanced remakes for the WonderSwan Color, the PlayStation, the Game Boy Advance, the PlayStation Portable, and multiple mobile and smartphone types. As neither this game nor Final Fantasy III were initially released outside Japan, Final Fantasy IV was originally released in North America as Final Fantasy II, so as not to confuse players. The most recent releases of the game are enhanced versions for the iOS and Android, which were released worldwide in 2010 and 2012, respectively.

The game's story centers on four youths whose parents were killed during an army invasion by the empire of Palamecia, who are using hellspawn to conquer the world. Three of the four main characters join a rebellion against the empire, embarking on missions to gain new magic and weapons, destroy enemy superweapons, and rescue leading members of the resistance. The Game Boy Advance remake adds a bonus story after the game is completed.

Final Fantasy II introduced many elements that would later become staples of the Final Fantasy franchise, including chocobos and the recurring character Cid. It also eliminated the traditional experience point leveling system of the previous and later games in the series, instead introducing an activity-based progression system where the characters' statistics increase according to how they are used or acquired. Despite being a sequel to Final Fantasy, the game includes no characters or locations from the first game. Final Fantasy II received little attention at the time from non-Japanese reviewers, though its remakes have garnered favorable reviews.

Final Fantasy II
Ff2cover
Developer(s)Square
Publisher(s)Square
Director(s)Hironobu Sakaguchi
Producer(s)Masafumi Miyamoto
Designer(s)
Programmer(s)Nasir Gebelli
Artist(s)Yoshitaka Amano
Writer(s)
Composer(s)Nobuo Uematsu
SeriesFinal Fantasy
Platform(s)
Release
Genre(s)Role-playing
Mode(s)Single-player

Gameplay

Final Fantasy II features gameplay similar to that of its predecessor, Final Fantasy. The player can freely roam an overworld containing several towns and dungeons. A menu-based system allows the player to outfit each character with equipment and up to two—often disposable—items for battle. Magic spells are assigned to the character from the item menu, and certain spells, such as "Cure", can be used outside of battle.[3] The player can also save their progress on the overworld. Weapons, armor, items, and magic spells can be purchased at shops, and townspeople provide useful information for the player's progression through the game. One new feature is the "Word Memory" system: when in conversation with non-player characters (NPCs), the player can "ask" about and "memorize" special keywords or phrases, which can later be repeated to other NPCs to gain more information or unlock new actions. Similarly, there exist a handful of special items that can be shown to NPCs during conversation or used on certain objects, which have the same effect.[4] Characters and monsters are no longer separated into separate windows in the battle screen as they were in the first Final Fantasy, and players can see their current and total hit points below the battle. Players can also fight with less than four characters in their party, which was not possible in the first game. Final Fantasy II introduced the chocobo, the signature Final Fantasy mascot, which lets characters ride to a location at great speed without being attacked by enemies. The recurring character Cid was also introduced in II; a character of the same name has appeared in every main-series game since.[5]

Final Fantasy II JAP Battle
The ill-fated opening battle in the Famicom version

On the overworld and within dungeons, random encounters with enemies can be fought to improve each character's attributes.[6] Unlike the original Final Fantasy, players could not upgrade their characters' classes. The game is also one of the few games in the series to not use experience-based levels. Instead, each character participating in battle develops depending on what actions they take. For instance, characters who frequently use a particular type of weapon will become more adept at wielding a weapon of that type, and will also increase in physical strength and accuracy. Attributes include hit points, magic points, magic power, stamina, strength, spirit, agility, intelligence, and evasion. Players can also increase their ability to wield certain types of weapon, and repeated use in combat causes the ability to level up.[5][6] Hit points (HP) and magic points (MP) increase with their use; a character who takes a heavy amount of damage in a battle might earn an increase in maximum HP, while a character who uses a lot of MP during battle might increase their maximum MP.[6] This experience system had several unintended consequences that allowed characters to gain much more experience than intended, such as players having their characters attack each other and repeatedly cast spells, thus causing their HP and abilities to grow extensively.[5] Final Fantasy II uses the same turn-based battle system seen in the original Final Fantasy, with battle parties consisting of up to four characters at a time. The game introduces a "back row" in battle, within which characters or enemies are immune to most physical attacks, but can be harmed with bows and magical attacks.[3]

Plot

Characters

Final Fantasy II party
Yoshitaka Amano's artwork of the main characters Leon, Firion, Maria, and Guy

Final Fantasy II features four playable characters as well as several secondary characters who are only briefly controlled by the player. Primary characters include Firion (フリオニール Furionīru, "Frioniel" in the Japanese release and English NES prototype), a resident of the country of Fynn and the main protagonist; Maria (マリア), a soft-spoken archer and dedicated enemy of the Empire; Guy (ガイ Gai, "Gus" in the remake for the PlayStation), a simple monk who communicates with animals; and Leon (レオンハルト Reonharuto, "Leonhart" in the Japanese release and English NES prototype), a conflicted dark knight who is missing for most of the game.[5][7] Five playable characters temporarily join the party to assist Firion, Maria, and Guy in their missions for the rebellion. These are Gordon (ゴードン Gōdon), the prince of Kas'ion and a member of the rebellion; Josef (ヨーゼフ Yōzefu), a villager in the town of Salamand; Leila (レイラ Reira, "Reila" in the Japanese release and English NES prototype), a pirate; Minwu (ミンウ Min'u, "Mindu" in the PlayStation remake and "Ming-Wu" in the Japanese release and English NES prototype), who is a White Mage with the rebellion, and Ricard Highwind (リチャード・ハイウインド Richādo Haiuindo, "Gareth" in the PlayStation remake, Edward in the English NES prototype and "Richard" in the Japanese release), who is the first dragoon to appear in the series.[5]

Firion and the Emperor of Palamecia (パラメキア皇帝 Paramekia Kōtei) (named Mateus (マティウス Matiusu) in Kenji Terada's novelization of the game) are the respective hero and villain representing Final Fantasy II in Dissidia Final Fantasy, Dissidia 012 Final Fantasy and Dissidia Final Fantasy NT, fighting games featuring characters from across the series. Firion is voiced by Hikaru Midorikawa in the Japanese versions and by Johnny Yong Bosch in the English versions; Mateus is voiced by Kenyu Horiuchi in the Japanese versions and Christopher Corey Smith in the English versions. In the PlayStation's opening FMV of Final Fantasy II, Firion is also voiced by Yukimasa Obi, while Maria is played by Noriko Shitaya, Guy by Kenta Miyake, and Leon by Takayuki Yamaguchi.

Story

Final Fantasy II begins as Firion, Maria, Guy and Leon are attacked by Palamecian Black Knight soldiers and left for dead. Firion, Maria, and Guy are rescued by Princess Hilda, who has established a rebel base in the town of Altair after her kingdom of Fynn was invaded by the Emperor. Hilda denies their request to join the rebel army because they are too young and inexperienced. The three set off for Fynn in search of Leon; there they find a dying Prince Scott of Kas'ion, Hilda's fiancé, who informs them that a former nobleman of Kas'ion, Borghen, betrayed the rebellion and became a General in the Imperial army. The party returns to Altair to inform Hilda. She allows the group to join the rebellion and asks them to journey north to find mythril, a metal which could be used to create powerful weapons. The party makes its way north to the occupied village of Salamand, saves the villagers forced to work in the nearby mines, kills Borghen, and retrieves the mythril.

For their next mission, the party is sent to the city of Bafsk to prevent the construction of a large airship known as the Dreadnought; however, it takes off just as they arrive. After retrieving the Sunfire, a weapon which can blow up the Dreadnought, they watch helplessly as an airship with Hilda on board is captured by the Dreadnought. When the Dreadnought lands to stock up on supplies, the party rescues Hilda and throws the Sunfire into the airship's engine. Before escaping from the explosion, the party encounters a dark knight whom Maria thinks she recognizes as Leon.

On his deathbed, the King of Fynn tasks the party to seek the help of the seemingly extinct dragoons of Deist. In Deist, the party finds only a mother with her son, learning that all but one of the Dragoons are dead, partly as a result of Imperial poison. After placing an egg of the last wyvern in a cavern, the party returns to Altair and rescues Hilda from the Empire a second time, before successfully reclaiming Fynn from the Imperial forces. They then travel west in search of a powerful magic item, joining forces with the last surviving dragoon on the way. The party returns to Fynn and sees that many towns have been destroyed by a cyclone summoned by the Emperor. The party calls upon the newly born last wyvern to take them to a castle inside the cyclone, where they confront and kill the Emperor. Back at Fynn, everyone celebrates the Empire's defeat, but a mortally wounded Fynn soldier arrives and reveals that Leon has taken the throne and plans to destroy the Rebels with the Imperial army.

The party enters the castle of Palamecia and confronts Leon. However, the Emperor reappears in the throne room in a new demonic form, revealing he has returned from Hell with the intention of destroying the entire world. The party and Leon escape Palamecia Castle with the wyvern, as the castle is replaced with the palace of Hell, Pandaemonium. Leon agrees to help the group seal the Emperor away. The party travels to the Jade Passage, an underground passage to the underworld, and finds the portal to Pandaemonium, where they finally defeat the Emperor. Afterwards, Leon chooses to leave in response to the trouble he caused, though Firion assures him that he'll be welcomed back if and when he returns.

The Dawn of Souls remake of the game for the Game Boy Advance includes an additional mission that takes place after the game, called "Soul of Rebirth". The story of the bonus mission follows several characters who died during the story of the game as they travel through alternate versions of several locations in the game and defeat another version of the Emperor.

Development

During the development of the first installment in the series, Square's management decided to manufacture 400,000 copies of the game to make a sequel possible,[8] then the original NES version successfully shipped 520,000 copies in Japan.[9] As there were no concrete ideas for Final Fantasy II from the start, it was eventually taken in a new direction and included none of the previous game's characters or locations.[5][8] Hironobu Sakaguchi, who had previously served as the main planner for Final Fantasy, assumed the role of director to accommodate for the larger development team.[1] Using the experience gained from the first installment, which focused more on fitting story ideas into their new gameplay system and game world, the developers fully crafted the story of Final Fantasy II first. The gameplay was then built around the narrative.[10] The experience system was designed to be a more realistic advancement system than that of the first game. Several members of the original staff from the first game reprised their jobs for Final Fantasy II. Sakaguchi again created the plot for the title, with the actual scenario written by Kenji Terada.[1][11] Nobuo Uematsu composed the music, as he had for the first game, while Yoshitaka Amano was again the concept artist.[5] As with the original, Final Fantasy II was programmed by Nasir Gebelli.[12] Midway through the development of the game, Gebelli was forced to return to Sacramento, California from Japan due to an expired work visa. The rest of the development staff followed him to Sacramento with necessary materials and equipment and finished production of the game there.[13] The game was released one day less than a year after the first game came out.[5]

In April 1989, the game was novelized by its original scenario writer Kenji Terada under the title Final Fantasy II: Muma no Meikyū (lit. "The Labyrinth of Nightmares"). It was published in Japan exclusively by Kadokawa Shoten.[14]

Music

The music for Final Fantasy II was later arranged by Tsuyoshi Sekito for the WonderSwan Color, PlayStation, and Game Boy Advance remakes. Although the two soundtracks were composed separately, the soundtrack to II has only been released as a combined album with the soundtrack to Final Fantasy I. They were first released as All Sounds of Final Fantasy I•II in 1989, which was then republished in 1994.[15] An arranged album of music from the two soundtracks titled Symphonic Suite Final Fantasy was also released in 1989, while Final Fantasy & Final Fantasy II Original Soundtrack, a combined soundtrack album for the PlayStation versions of the games, was released in 2002 and re-released in 2004.[16][17] The music of Final Fantasy II has also appeared in various official concerts and live albums, such as 20020220 music from Final Fantasy, a live recording of an orchestra performing music from the series including several pieces from the games.[18] Additionally, several songs from the game were performed as part of a medley by the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra for the Distant Worlds – Music from Final Fantasy concert tour,[19] while a different medley of songs from the game were performed by the New Japan Philharmonic Orchestra in the Tour de Japon: Music from Final Fantasy concert series.[20]

Versions and re-releases

Final Fantasy has been remade several times for different platforms, and has frequently been packaged with Final Fantasy I in various collections. While all of these remakes retain the same basic story and battle mechanics, various tweaks have been made in different areas, including graphics, sound, and specific game elements.

Chronology of Final Fantasy versions and remakes
Title Release Country System Developer Publisher Notes
Final Fantasy II 1988 Japan Family Computer Square Square The original version
Final Fantasy I・II 1994 Japan Family Computer Square Square A few graphical updates
Final Fantasy II 2001 Japan WonderSwan Color Square Square Background images in battle scenes, re-drawn sprites
Final Fantasy Origins 2002
2003
2003
Japan
USA
EUR
PlayStation Tose Squaresoft All-new, more detailed graphics, remixed soundtrack, FMV sequences, art galleries, memo save function
Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls 2004 Japan
USA
EUR
Game Boy Advance Tose Nintendo Four additional dungeons, updated bestiary, a few tweaks
Final Fantasy II 2005 Japan Mobile phone Square Enix
Namco Bandai Games
Superior to the 8-bit original but less advanced than recent ports
Final Fantasy II 2007
2007
2008
Japan
USA
EUR
PlayStation Portable Tose Square Enix Higher-resolution 2D graphics, FMV sequences, remixed soundtrack,
bonus dungeons and script from Dawn of Souls
Final Fantasy II 2009 Japan Wii Virtual Console Square Enix Virtual Console release of the original Famicom version
Final Fantasy II 2009
2012
Japan
USA
PlayStation Store PSOne Classics Square Co. PlayStation version was released as PSOne Classics
Final Fantasy II 2010 worldwide iOS Square Enix Square Enix Based on the PSP version
Final Fantasy II 2011 Japan
EUR
PlayStation Store downloadable PSP games Square Enix PlayStation Portable version was released as downloadable PSP game
Final Fantasy II 2012 worldwide Android Matrix Software Square Enix Based on the iOS version
Final Fantasy II 2012 Japan Nintendo 3DS Virtual Console Square Enix Virtual Console release of the original Famicom version
Final Fantasy II 2013 Japan Wii U Virtual Console Square Enix Virtual Console release of the original Famicom version
Final Fantasy I & II Advance 2016 Japan Wii U Virtual Console Square Square Enix Virtual Console release of the GBA version.

Unreleased English version

Following the successful North American release of the original Final Fantasy by Nintendo in 1990, Square Soft, Square's North American subsidiary, began work on an English language localization of Final Fantasy II, to be called Final Fantasy II: Dark Shadow Over Palakia. Assigned to the project was Kaoru Moriyama, whose later work included script translations for Final Fantasy IV and Secret of Mana (known as Seiken Densetsu 2 in Japan). Although a beta version was produced, and the game was advertised in several Square Soft trade publications, the long development time, the age of the original Japanese game and the arrival of the Super Nintendo Entertainment System, the NES's successor console, led Square Soft to cancel work on the Final Fantasy II localization in favor of the recently released Final Fantasy IV (which, to avoid confusing North American players, was retitled Final Fantasy II).[5][21]

Although a prototype cartridge of the English NES Final Fantasy II was produced, the project was, by Moriyama's own admission, still far from complete; "We had so very limited memory capacity we could use for each game, and it was never really "translating" but chopping up the information and cramming them back in... [Additionally] our boss had no understanding in putting in extra work for the English version at that time."[21] In 2003, when the game was finally released to English-speaking audiences as part of Final Fantasy Origins, it was released with new graphics, music, and a brand new translation under the supervision of Akira Kashiwagi. A fan translation of the original game was also created prior to the release of Origins, and makes use of an original translation as the existence of the prototype cartridge was not common knowledge at the time.[21]

Re-releases

In addition to its original Famicom release, Final Fantasy II was re-released on the WonderSwan Color in 2001, and both singularly and as part of a collection with Final Fantasy I for the PlayStation in 2002. It was released on the Game Boy Advance in 2004 as part of Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls, on the PlayStation Portable in 2007, and for the Japanese Wii Virtual Console on June 16, 2009.[22]

The Final Fantasy I•II collection included the original game with only minor changes. The WonderSwan Color remake of the game was first released on May 3, 2001, and later included as a bundle with a special Final Fantasy II edition of the console.[23] It included completely redone graphics in the manner of the 16-bit generation Final Fantasy games and includes larger character sprites, remixed music by Tsuyoshi Sekito, and full graphical backgrounds in battle mode.[24] The PlayStation version featured even more graphical updates over the WonderSwan version, and the soundtrack was again remixed by Tsuyoshi Sekito to a higher quality so as to utilise the audio capabilities of the PlayStation. Sekito also composed a few new tracks to be used in the new cutscenes. It was published both individually (in Japan only) and alongside Final Fantasy I in a collection entitled Final Fantasy Origins (or Final Fantasy I+II Premium Collection in Japan); this was the first release of the game outside Japan.[25] On December 18, 2012 the port was re-released as part of the Final Fantasy 25th Anniversary Ultimate Box package.[26]

Final fantasy ii GBA
A typical battle scene from the Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls remake

Final Fantasy II was again released in a new format in 2004 for the Game Boy Advance as part of Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls. The primary change for this version was the addition of a bonus storyline entitled Soul of Rebirth accessible to the player after completing the game.[27] In 2004 and 2006, Square Enix released a version of Final Fantasy II for three Japanese mobile phone networks.[28] To celebrate the Final Fantasy series' 20th anniversary, the game was released in Japan for the PlayStation Portable in 2007.[29] The remake features improved graphics, the cutscenes and soundtrack from Final Fantasy Origins, and the bonus quest and dungeons from Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls. It additionally includes two new dungeons in which more character-specific equipment can be found, alongside powerful enemies and a new boss.[30] The release for the Japanese Virtual Console for the Wii on June 16, 2009, for the Wii U on December 11, 2013, and for the Nintendo 3DS on February 12, 2014, is identical to the original Famicom release, incorporating none of the updates of the later versions.[22] On February 25, 2010, Square Enix released a port of the PSP version modified with touchscreen controls for the iOS platform.[31] Following this, a touchscreen port was brought to Android in 2012 through the Google Play store.[32]

Reception

Reception
Aggregate scores
AggregatorScore
GameRankings81% (PS)[33]
80% (GBA)[34]
65% (PSP)[35]
75% (iOS)[36]
Metacritic79/100 (PS)[37]
79/100 (GBA)[38]
63/100 (PSP)[39]
73/100 (iOS)[40]
Review scores
PublicationScore
Famitsu35/40 (Famicom)[41]
30/40 (WonderSwan)[42]
27/40 (PlayStation)[43]
GameSpot6/10 (PSP)[44]
GameSpy3.5/5 stars (PSP)[45]
IGN6.1/10 (PSP)[46]
6.8/10 (iOS)[47]
TouchArcade4/5 stars (iOS)[48]
Award
PublicationAward
Famicom Tsūshin (1989)Best Scenario[49]

According to Square's publicity department, the original Famicom release sold 800,000 copies.[50] As of March 31, 2003, the game, including all re-releases at the time, had shipped 1.28 million copies worldwide, with 1.08 million of those copies being shipped in Japan and 200,000 abroad.[51] Despite having only been released in June of that year, as of September 2007 the PlayStation Portable version had shipped 90,000 copies in Japan and 70,000 in North America.[52] Despite these high sales, the game had sold the fewest copies of any of the first ten main games in the Final Fantasy series.[51]

Upon release, Famicom Tsūshin (now Famitsu) gave the original Famicom version a score of 35 out of 40, based on a panel of four reviewers giving it ratings of 9, 9, 9 and 8 out of 10. This made it one of their three highest-rated games of 1988, along with Dragon Quest III (which scored 38/40) and Super Mario Bros. 3 (which scored 35/40). It was also one of the magazine's five highest-rated games up until 1988, along with Dragon Quest II (which scored 38/40) and Zelda II: The Adventure of Link (which scored 36/40).[41] The 1989 "All Soft Catalog" issue of Famicom Tsūshin included Final Fantasy II in its list of the best games of all time, giving it the Best Scenario award.[49] Retrospectively, G4 described the stat-building system as an "Innovation", noting that "Computer RPGs took the “level” system wholesale from tabletop role-playing games and made it a genre staple, but FF2 eliminated levels altogether," but that what "sounds novel at first wound up being a huge mess".[53]

The game's re-releases have been more heavily reviewed. Famitsu magazine scored the WonderSwan version of the game a 30 out of 40,[42] and GameSpot noted the Dawn of Souls' mostly outdated graphics but praised its length and bonus content.[54] IGN noted the great improvement in the translation of the story over Final Fantasy I and the addition of later Final Fantasy features, such as being able to save anywhere in the overworld map without a tent or cabin.[55] The Dawn of Souls release was named the IGN Game Boy "Game of the Month" for March 2004, and the package was rated 76th in Nintendo Power's Top 200 Games list.[56][57] The dialogue system was thought to be time consuming and stilted, but was still a milestone for interactivity. The story was considered to be much more involved and deep than the first Final Fantasy, as it involved romance and the death of characters. The game's plot was thought by some reviewers to mirror elements of Star Wars: A New Hope in its use of an orphan joining a rebellion against an empire that was building a massive ship, with a captive princess inside.[5] GameSpy praised the addition of the ability to save the game at any time, calling the feature crucial for a game on a handheld game console, and in contrast to GameSpot, praised the graphics, saying that while they were primitive, they were "well-suited" to the Game Boy Advance.[58]

The PSP version was met with generally average reviews. GameSpot described the "more intriguing" story and "key words" system as "notable" in "the evolution of the series and genre" but called the level up system "chaotic" and noted that unlike previous versions, this was shipped without a version of Final Fantasy I.[44] IGN described the "dialogue and story" as "much more interesting than" its predecessor and the "proficiency system not unlike what's found in The Elder Scrolls" as a "semi-innovation" for its time, but also complained about the gameplay, saying, "If you're the type of player who puts a higher emphasis on more satisfying gameplay experiences [...] then FF2 definitely isn't the upgrade it appears to be."[46] Both sources praised the graphics, however.[44][46] GameSpy, however, while echoing similar complaints about the "quirky and sometimes confusing" leveling system and praises for the graphics, also applauded the supposed decrease in difficulty of the game, which in the reviewers' opinion eliminated the necessity to abuse the leveling system in order to progress in the game as the player had to do in the original game.[45]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Final Fantasy II (ファイナルファンタジーII Fainaru Fantajī Tsū)

References

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External links

1991 in video gaming

1991 has seen many sequels and prequels in video games and several new titles such as Mega Man 4, The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past and Sonic the Hedgehog.

Chocobo

The Chocobo (Japanese: チョコボ, Hepburn: Chokobo) is a fictional species from the Final Fantasy video game series made by Square and Square Enix (since 1988). The creature is generally a flightless bird, though certain highly specialized breeds in some titles retain the ability to fly. It bears a resemblance to casuariiformes and ratites, capable of being ridden and otherwise used by player characters during gameplay. Chocobos first appeared in Final Fantasy II and have been featured in almost all subsequent Final Fantasy games, as well as making cameo appearances in numerous other games. A spin-off Chocobo series featuring chocobos has also been created.

Evil empire

An evil empire is a speculative fiction trope in which a major antagonist of the story is a technologically advanced nation, typically ruled by an evil emperor or empress, that aims to control the world or conquer some specific group. They are opposed by a hero from more common origins who uses their guile or the help of an underground resistance to fight them. Well-known examples are the Galactic Empire in Star Wars, which forms upon the collapse of the more benevolent Galactic Republic and is opposed by Luke Skywalker, as well as the Galactic Empire in Dune, whose Emperor plots the downfall of House Atreides, and is opposed by Paul Atreides. The theme also often appears in video games, such as the Final Fantasy series, starting with Final Fantasy II, which was inspired by Star Wars, and becoming a major part of Final Fantasy VI in the form of the Gestahl Empire.

Experience point

An experience point (often abbreviated to exp or XP) is a unit of measurement used in tabletop role-playing games (RPGs) and role-playing video games to quantify a player character's progression through the game. Experience points are generally awarded for the completion of missions, overcoming obstacles and opponents, and for successful role-playing.In many RPGs, characters start as fairly weak and untrained. When a sufficient amount of experience is obtained, the character "levels up", achieving the next stage of character development. Such an event usually increases the character's statistics, such as maximum health, magic and strength, and may permit the character to acquire abilities or improve existing ones. Leveling up may also give the character access to more areas or items.

In some role-playing games, particularly those derived from Dungeons & Dragons, experience points are used to improve characters in discrete experience levels; in other games, such as GURPS and the World of Darkness games, experience points are spent on specific abilities or attributes chosen by the player.

In most games, as the difficulty of the challenge increases, the experience rewarded for overcoming it also increases. As players gain more experience points, the amount of experience needed to gain abilities typically increases. Alternatively, games keep the amount of experience points per level constant, but progressively lower the experience gained for the same tasks as the character's level increases. Thus, as the player character strengthens from gaining experience, they are encouraged to accept tasks that are commensurate with their improved abilities in order to advance.

FF2

FF2 may refer to:

Final Fantasy II, a 1988 console role-playing game for the Family Computer

Final Fantasy IV, retitled Final Fantasy II in North America, a 1992 console role-playing game for the Super NES

Fatal Fury 2, a 1992 competitive fighting game for the Neo-Geo

Fatal Frame II, a 2003 horror adventure game for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox

Final Fight 2, a 1993 side-scrolling action game for the Super NES

Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer, the sequel to the 2005 Fantastic Four film

2 Fast 2 Furious, a 2003 film

Mozilla Firefox 2, a web browser released in 2006

Freak Fortress 2, a game mode/mini-community for the game, "Team Fortress 2"

FFII

FFII may refer to:

Final Fantasy II, a 1988 video game

Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butterfly, a 2003 video game

Foundation for a Free Information Infrastructure, a non-profit organisation dedicated to establishing a free market in information technology

Final Fantasy

Final Fantasy is a Japanese science fantasy media franchise created by Hironobu Sakaguchi, and developed and owned by Square Enix (formerly Square). The franchise centers on a series of fantasy and science fantasy role-playing video games (RPGs/JRPGs). The first game in the series was released in 1987, with 14 other main-numbered entries being released since then. The franchise has since branched into other video game genres such as tactical role-playing, action role-playing, massively multiplayer online role-playing, racing, third-person shooter, fighting, and rhythm, as well as branching into other media, including CGI films, anime, manga, and novels.

Final Fantasy installments are generally stand-alone stories, each with different settings, plots and main characters, however, as a corpus they feature some identical elements that help to define the franchise. These recurring elements include plot themes, character names, and game mechanics. Each plot centers on a particular group of heroes who are battling a great evil, but also explores the characters' internal struggles and relationships. Character names are frequently derived from the history, languages, pop culture, and mythologies of cultures worldwide. The mechanics of each game involve similar battle systems and maps.

The Final Fantasy video game series has been both critically and commercially successful, selling more than 142 million games worldwide, making it one of the best-selling video game franchises of all time. The series is well known for its innovation, visuals, and music, such as the inclusion of full-motion videos (FMVs), photorealistic character models, and music by Nobuo Uematsu. It has been a driving force in the video game industry, and the series has affected Square Enix's business practices and its relationships with other video game developers. It has popularized many features now common in role-playing games, also popularizing the genre as a whole in markets outside Japan.

Final Fantasy (video game)

Final Fantasy is a fantasy role-playing video game developed and published by Square in 1987. It is the first game in Square's Final Fantasy series, created by Hironobu Sakaguchi. Originally released for the NES, Final Fantasy was remade for several video game consoles and is frequently packaged with Final Fantasy II in video game collections. The story follows four youths called the Light Warriors, who each carry one of their world's four elemental orbs which have been darkened by the four Elemental Fiends. Together, they quest to defeat these evil forces, restore light to the orbs, and save their world.

Final Fantasy was originally conceived under the working title Fighting Fantasy, but trademark issues and dire circumstances surrounding Square as well as Sakaguchi himself prompted the name to be changed. The game was a great commercial success, received generally positive reviews, and spawned many successful sequels and supplementary titles in the form of the Final Fantasy series. The original is now regarded as one of the most influential and successful role-playing games on the Nintendo Entertainment System, playing a major role in popularizing the genre. Critical praise focused on the game's graphics, while criticism targeted the time spent wandering in search of random battle encounters to raise the player's experience level. By March 2003, all versions of the Final Fantasy had sold a combined total of two million copies worldwide.

Final Fantasy IV

Final Fantasy IV, known as Final Fantasy II for its initial North American release, is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square (now Square Enix) for the Super Nintendo Entertainment System. Released in 1991, it is the fourth main installment of the Final Fantasy series. The game's story follows Cecil, a dark knight, as he tries to prevent the sorcerer Golbez from seizing powerful crystals and destroying the world. He is joined on this quest by a frequently changing group of allies. Final Fantasy IV introduced innovations that became staples of the Final Fantasy series and role-playing games in general. Its "Active Time Battle" system was used in five subsequent Final Fantasy games, and unlike prior games in the series, IV gave each character their own unchangeable character class.

Final Fantasy IV has been ported to several other platforms with varying differences. An enhanced remake, also called Final Fantasy IV, with 3D graphics was released for the Nintendo DS in 2007 and 2008. The game was re-titled Final Fantasy II during its initial release outside Japan as the original Final Fantasy II and Final Fantasy III had not been released outside Japan at the time. All later localizations, which began to appear after Final Fantasy VII (released worldwide under that title), used the original title.

With its character-driven plot, use of new technologies, and critically acclaimed score by Nobuo Uematsu, Final Fantasy IV is regarded as a landmark of the series and of the role-playing genre. Due to this, it is considered to be one of the greatest video games of all time and one of the most important and influential games in the role-playing genre. The various incarnations of the game have sold more than four million copies worldwide. A sequel, Final Fantasy IV: The After Years, was released for Japanese mobile phones in 2008, and worldwide via the Wii Shop Channel on June 1, 2009. In 2011, both Final Fantasy IV and The After Years were released for the PlayStation Portable as part of the compilation Final Fantasy IV: The Complete Collection, which also included a new game, set between the two; Final Fantasy IV: Interlude. Ports of the Nintendo DS remake were released for iOS in 2012, for Android in 2013 and for Windows in 2014.

Final Fantasy IV (2007 video game)

Final Fantasy IV (ファイナルファンタジーIV, Fainaru Fantajī Fō) is a Nintendo DS role-playing video game and an enhanced remake of the 1991 SNES game, Final Fantasy IV, also known as Final Fantasy II in America for the SNES. It was released as part of the Final Fantasy series 20th anniversary celebrations on December 20, 2007 in Japan, on July 22, 2008 in North America, and on September 5, 2008 in Europe.

The game was developed by Matrix Software, the same team responsible for the 3D Final Fantasy III remake, and was supervised by members of the original development team: Takashi Tokita served as executive producer and director, Tomoya Asano as producer, and Hiroyuki Ito as battle designer. Animator Yoshinori Kanada wrote the new cutscenes.

The game was well received by critics and fans alike; it was praised for being sufficiently faithful to the original while expanding on many gameplay and story elements.In 2012, the game was released for iOS on the App Store, for Android in 2013 and for Microsoft Windows in 2014.

Koichi Ishii

Koichi Ishii (石井 浩一, Ishii Kōichi, born July 9, 1964), sometimes credited as Kouichi Ishii, is a video game designer perhaps best known for creating the Mana series (known as Seiken Densetsu in Japan). He joined Square (now Square Enix) in 1987, where he has directed or produced every game released in the Mana series (as of 2006). He has also contributed to several games in Square Enix's SaGa and Final Fantasy series, and created the well-known chocobo and moogle characters.

List of Chocobo media

The Chocobo series is a collection of video games published by Square, and later by Square Enix, featuring a recurring creature from the Final Fantasy series, the Chocobo, as the protagonist. The creature is a large and normally flightless bird which first appeared in Final Fantasy II and has been featured in almost all subsequent Final Fantasy games, as well as making cameo appearances in numerous other games. The Chocobo series of video games contains over 20 titles for video game consoles, mobile phones, and online platforms. These games include installments of the Mystery Dungeon series of roguelike video games, racing games, adventure games, and minigame collections. Although the various games of the series have different game styles and are generally unrelated except by their inclusion of a Chocobo as the main character, Square Enix considers them to be a distinct series.The first game in the series, Chocobo no Fushigina Dungeon, is a Mystery Dungeon game released in 1997, while the latest is Chocobo no Chocotto Nouen, a 2012 farming game for the GREE mobile platform. Another game in the series, Chocobo Racing 3D, was cancelled in 2013. A new game, Chocobo's Mystery Dungeon Every Buddy, is planned for release in early 2019. In addition to Square and Square Enix, the games have been developed by several other companies, including h.a.n.d., Bottle Cube, and Smile-Lab. Eight albums of music from Chocobo games have been produced and published by Square Enix, DigiCube, and Toshiba EMI, and an additional album of Chocobo-related music from both the Chocobo and Final Fantasy series, Compi de Chocobo, was released in 2013.

List of Final Fantasy media

Final Fantasy is a series of role-playing video games developed and published by Square Enix (formerly Square). Its first game premiered in Japan in 1987, and Final Fantasy games have subsequently been localized for markets in North America, Europe and Australia, on nearly every video game console since its debut on the Nintendo Entertainment System. Final Fantasy is Square Enix's most successful franchise, having sold over 97 million units worldwide to date. In addition to traditional role-playing games, the series includes tactical role-playing games, portable games, massively multiplayer online role-playing games, and games for mobile phones. Its popularity has placed it as the sixth-best-selling video game franchise, and the series has won multiple awards over the years.In addition to the 15 games released as part of the main (numbered) series and their many spin-offs and related titles, the Final Fantasy series has spawned many works in other media including anime, movies, novels and manga, and radio dramas. Final Fantasy: Unlimited, originally a stand-alone anime series, now has its own sub-franchise which includes video games. Many games, particularly the main series, have soundtrack album releases featuring their music in different arrangements. Square Enix has also consistently released companion books for its games which provide additional backstory and plot information, as well as detailed walkthroughs for the game. Since the announcement of Compilation of Final Fantasy VII, Square Enix has focused on "polymorphic content", expanding each game world with material on many video game platforms, as well as other forms of media.

List of Final Fantasy video games

Final Fantasy is a video game series developed and published by Square Enix (formerly Square). The first title in the series, the eponymous Final Fantasy, premiered in Japan in 1987, and Final Fantasy games have been released almost every single year since. Fifteen games have been released as part of the main (numbered) series. Sequels, prequels, spin-offs, and related video games have been published, as well as numerous titles in other media forms. Each game in the main series takes place in a different fictional universe rather than serve as direct sequels to prior games, although some titles have received sequels, or prequels, set in the same universe.

Most of the games have been re-released for several different platforms, many of which have been included in bundled releases. The series as a whole is primarily composed of role-playing video games, but also includes massively multiplayer online role-playing games, third-person shooters, tower defense games, and tactical role-playing games. Final Fantasy games have been released on over a dozen video game consoles beginning with the Nintendo Entertainment System, as well as for personal computers and mobile phones. The series is Square Enix's most successful franchise, having sold over 100 million units worldwide as of June 2011, across both the main series and its spin-offs. Final Fantasy's popularity has placed it as one of the best-selling video game franchises.

List of Square Enix compilation albums

Square Enix is a Japanese video game developer and publisher formed from the merger on April 1, 2003 of video game developer Square and publisher Enix. The company is best known for its role-playing video game franchises, which include the Final Fantasy series, the Dragon Quest series, and the action-RPG Kingdom Hearts series. For many of its games, Square Enix has produced albums of music containing songs from those games or arrangements of those songs. In addition to those albums, it has produced several compilation albums containing music from multiple games or series made by the company. These albums include music directly from the games, as well as arrangements covering a variety of styles, such as orchestral, piano, vocal, and techno. This list includes albums produced by Square, Enix, or Square Enix which contain music from multiple games in the companies' catalog which are not a part of a single series. The first of these was Personal Computer Music by Enix in 1987. Dozens of albums have been published since, primarily through Square Enix's own record label.

Several of the albums have sold well, placing on the Japanese Oricon Albums Chart. Drammatica: The Very Best of Yoko Shimomura reached position 179, as did SQ Chips. SQ Chips 2 reached position 102, Love SQ reached 176, Chill SQ reached 236, Symphonic Fantasies reached 102, More SQ reached 107, Cafe SQ reached 134, Battle SQ reached 72, and Beer SQ reached position 81. The music on the compilation albums was originally composed by numerous composers. Among those well-represented are Nobuo Uematsu, long-time composer of the Final Fantasy series; Masashi Hamauzu, composer of various Final Fantasy, Chocobo, and SaGa games; Yasunori Mitsuda, composer for the Chrono series and Xenogears; Kenji Ito, who composed for several SaGa and Mana games, and Yoko Shimomura, composer for the Kingdom Hearts series.

List of Square video games

Square was a Japanese video game development and publishing company founded in September 1986 by Masashi Miyamoto. It began as a computer game software division of Den-Yu-Sha, a power line construction company owned by Miyamoto's father. Square's first titles were The Death Trap and its sequel Will: The Death Trap II; they sold over 100,000 copies, a major success for the time. In September 1986, Square spun off from Den-Yu-Sha and became an independent company officially named Square Co., Ltd. While its next few games sold poorly, 1987's Final Fantasy sold over 500,000 copies, sparking the company's flagship series.Square was best known for its role-playing video game franchises, which include the Final Fantasy series. Of its properties, this franchise is the best-selling, with total worldwide sales of over 100 million units. During its existence, the company developed or published dozens of titles in various video game franchises on numerous gaming systems. On April 1, 2003, Square merged with video game publisher Enix to form Square Enix. This list includes retail games developed or published by Square during its existence.

Music of Final Fantasy I and II

The music of the video games Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II was composed by regular series composer Nobuo Uematsu, who would go on to be the exclusive composer for the next seven Final Fantasy games. Although they were composed separately, music from the two games has only been released together. All Sounds of Final Fantasy I•II, a compilation of almost all of the music in the games, was released by DataM/Polystar in 1989, and subsequently re-released by NTT Publishing in 1994. Symphonic Suite Final Fantasy, an arranged album of music from the two games by Katsuhisa Hattori and his son Takayuki Hattori was released by DataM in 1989, and re-released by NTT Publishing/Polystar in 1994. Final Fantasy & Final Fantasy II Original Soundtrack, another arranged album, this time by Nobuo Uematsu and Tsuyoshi Sekito, was released in 2002 by DigiCube and again in 2004 by Square Enix.

The music was well received by critics; reviewers have praised the quality and power of the original pieces, and reacted favorably to the arranged soundtracks. Several tracks, especially "Opening Theme", "Main Theme" and "Matoya's Cave", remain popular today, and have been performed numerous times in orchestral concert series, as well as having been published in arranged and compilation albums by Square Enix and outside groups.

Nasir Gebelli

Nasir Gebelli (Persian: ناصر جبلی‎, also Nasser Gebelli, born 1957) is an Iranian-American programmer and video game designer usually credited in his games as simply Nasir. Gebelli co-founded Sirius Software, created his own company Gebelli Software, and worked for Squaresoft (now Square Enix). He became known in the early 1980s for producing the first fast action games for the Apple II computer, including 3D shooters, launching the Apple II as a gaming machine. This established him as one of the pioneers of computer gaming, and one of the greatest Apple II game designers. From the late 1980s to the early 1990s, he became known for his home console work at Squaresoft, where he was part of Square's A-Team, programming the first three Final Fantasy games, the Famicom 3D System titles 3-D WorldRunner and Rad Racer, and Secret of Mana.

Recurring elements in the Final Fantasy series

Final Fantasy is a media franchise created by Hironobu Sakaguchi, and developed and owned by Square Enix (formerly Square). The franchise centers on a series of fantasy and science fantasy role-playing video games (RPGs). The eponymous first game in the series, published in 1987, was conceived by Sakaguchi as his last-ditch effort in the game industry; the title was a success and spawned sequels. While most entries in the series are separate from each other, they have recurring elements carrying over between entries: these include plot themes and motifs, gameplay mechanics such as the Active Time Battle (ATB) system, and signature character designs from the likes of Yoshitaka Amano and Tetsuya Nomura.

The artwork for the series has been associated with multiple artists: the three most prominent being Amano, Nomura and Akihiko Yoshida: Amano designed characters up to Final Fantasy VI, Nomura has designed characters for multiple games since Final Fantasy VII, and Yoshida has been involved in Final Fantasy XII, XIV and titles associated with the fictional world of Ivalice. The original gameplay created by Akitoshi Kawazu was based around Dungeons & Dragons and Wizardry. Starting with Final Fantasy IV, the Hiroyuki Ito-designed ATB system took prevalence: variations of the ATB system have been used in multiple entries since then. These various aspects have been positively received by critics over the series' lifetime, contributing to its overall worldwide success.

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