When it comes to Final Fantasy games in the Google Play store, there’s certainly no shortage. This is doubly the case in Japan, where a number of free-to-play Square Enix titles have released over the years with only a handful ever making their way to other markets. One of these F2P titles is Mobius Final Fantasy and, ahead of its international launch, we had the opportunity to try it out for ourselves.
I’ll start by saying that this is clearly a mobile game through-and-through, played in the portrait mode and with all character movement pretty much relegated to hitting a button to start a new mission and then watching your character automatically walk to the next battle. Not quite the full console experience by any means, but for what it is, I admit that the roughly two hours I spent playing with it so far were a lot of fun.
For a mobile free-to-play title, there’s actually quite a bit of polish here, with excellent graphics, well executed menus, and reasonably decent voice acting in the cutscenes. All this is likely thanks to the involvement of some pretty big talent including Yoshinori Kitase, of FF6 and Chrono Trigger fame, and Kazushige Nojima, of FF7 and Kingdom Hearts fame. As for the story, it’s pretty “RPG cliche” in my opinion. In the introduction to chapter 1 we learn that your character has forgotten who he is and a mysterious voice is guiding him. He’s also not alone, there are a ton of other would be “Heroes of light” and it’s up to you to train yourself and rise to the title.
So what exactly is Mobius Final Fantasy all about, beyond just the story? Mobius Final Fantasy is a social RPG that lets you meet and follow other real players, as well as “rent” their cards to use along your journey. Cards are a central part of the gameplay here, with you gathering new cards using a special currency, fusing them together to raise levels, and more. There’s also a job system, where you can unlock new jobs and switch between them during each mission. The idea is that certain jobs are better for one mission than the other, and it’s a nice little touch that adds a bit of variety to the gameplay.
As for the battle system, each mission is separated into a number of battles each with a set of monsters that need defeated. The combat is turn based and tapping on an enemy does a basic attack, but keep tapping and it’ll turn into a combo. There’s also a variety of spells that can be casted by collected elements released by enemies. Just like in Final Fantasy 13, there’s also a break gauge that will make the enemy super weak for a limited time.
The only downside to the battles themselves is, at least as far into the game as I’ve gotten, I’ve found the experience to be just a tad too easy and often the auto battle mode is more than capable of handling all the bad guys on its own — indicating just how little planning these battles take. Thankfully things are a little better when it comes to the boss fights.
Overall, Mobius Final Fantasy looks to be pretty fun and we look forward to its official release, which by the way is just around the corner, August 3rd to be exact. Is it perfect? No, but as long as Square continues to support this one with new content, it’s pretty easy to recommend for any Square Enix fan out there. Just keep in mind that in addition to being free to play, with in-app purchases to boot, it also requires you to constantly check in online — so you’ll need to be near Wi-Fi or use mobile data when firing this one up.
We’ll be checking this one out in even more detail once the final version arrives this August. What do you think based on what you know so far, excited for this one or not?