Final Fantasy X / X-2 HD Remaster (PS4) Review

Jae Lee

Revisiting a classic.

When we talk about the various entries in the Final Fantasy series, we often speak of IV and VI (my favorite) as the best in the classic generation.

Of course, the fan favorite VII is always brought up as a monumental departure in storytelling through the use of FMVs, and then we have XIII which is in contention for being one of the most polarizing Final Fantasy games of all time.

However, it’s odd to me that no one really talks too much about X and its importance in the annals of JRPG history for its liberal use of voice acting.

I still remember to this date, something from more than ten years ago. Watching all those in-game cut scenes and being enamored by the importance of voice in portraying the personalities of the characters.

Still, I’m fully aware of what nostalgia can do to our past perceptions.

So when I decided to revisit this classic once more after all these years, I was worried that it might not have passed the harsh test of time.

Luckily, it turns out I was worried over nothing.

The visual upgrades from the original PS2 version is immediately noticeable.

The visual upgrades from the original PS2 version is immediately noticeable.

MSRP: $49.99(PS4)
Platforms: PS3, PS4, PSV
Voice Acting: ENG Only
Played: 20~ hours

FFX was an exceptionally good looking game when it first debuted in 2001. The HD remaster took the visuals of the original and went above and beyond the standard “upping the resolution”.

They reworked the UI, created brand new character models, and background assets- even made all the SD FMVs into beautiful HD widescreen videos. When it comes to visuals, I have no complaints as I feel they did an excellent job in making the game look like a true “HD” title.

FFX also includes an arranged soundtrack which puts a heavier emphasis on the use of real instruments instead of synthesizers and unlike the PS3 version, it can be toggled back and forth from the original/arranged at any time.

While I appreciate the ability to switch between the two types on the fly, it seemed to have introduced a bug where the background music would start from the very beginning whenever combat is initiated.

Given how good a lot of the songs are in the X ost, this is quite the shame and I hope it will be patched at a later date.

There is also the “RNG Bug” that had the FF community foaming at the mouth, but I personally don’t find to be that big of a deal. The thought that if I loaded a previous save, I would get the same enemy encounter/attack pattern doesn’t really faze me too much and honestly, I never would have realized it because I’ve never died and had to replay a section of the game after playing more than 20 hours.

There are some interesting implications to the set RNG in very specific scenarios like for speedrunning and etc, but for a casual play through, it will have nearly zero impact on your experience.

What does impact the experience of loading up a previous save and playing through the same part of the game again is the fact that there is still no way to skip cut scenes. When I lost that story blitzball match and loaded up my last save to see if I could win it, I quit halfway because I grew bored of sitting through the cut scenes I had just seen minutes before.

It feels like obvious addition to fit with what’s expected of RPGs in the modern era, and it’s sorely missed.

The combat engine for both games still feel nuanced with depth to spare.

The combat engine for both games still feel nuanced with depth to spare.

Both FFX and X-2 have aged quite well in terms of storytelling and its cast of characters (well, not as much in FFX-2 or as I like to call it, “Tidus’s Angels: Lets Play Dress Up, Girls!”) and even though the voice acting is quite rough in some parts, I was genuinely impressed with the overall quality all the same.

Amongst all the controversy on the possible oversaturation of HD remasters in the gaming industry, I feel this is one that deserved the treatment and more importantly, was executed competently.

Fun Tidbit: There’s also the inclusion of a mini story FMV that links FFX and X-2 together and the standalone tower climbing mini game for FFX-2 along with a credits/audio drama.

Review copy of game provided by publisher.

Good

  • Still the same enjoyable games
  • Clean visuals that run at steady framerates
  • Ability to switch from arranged/original OST on the fly in FFX

Bad

  • RNG and background music bug
  • No skipping cutscenes
8.5

Great

Jae Lee
Jae has been a gamer ever since he got a Nintendo when he was just a child. He has a passion for games and enjoys writing. While he worries about the direction gaming as a medium might be headed, he's too busy playing games to do anything about it.
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