Geek Pull #1: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius

Sometimes, we geeks can be a fickle lot, putting all our time and attention into an endeavor, sucking it dry, and then moving on to something new. Geek Pull is all about chronicling something new that we just discovered and are obsessed with.  Hey,  it could be something you’d like to try out too!  For the first entry in this series, I’m going to talk about a mobile game that I have quickly become addicted to: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius.

 

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As mentioned above, Final Fantasy Brave Exvius is a mobile game, and it’s available on Apple and Android devices.  Unlike many mobile games, however, FFBE has a surprising amount of depth.  I’m used to playing mobile games that are simply distractions, like the quick-click dungeon crawlers that are all over the Apple and Google Play stores, or endless runners.  FFBE actually has a story to play through.  Is it groundbreaking?  No, but it does feature some likeable characters.  You’ll want to keep playing this not because it strings you along with daily log-in bonuses (which is does have), but because you’ll want to know what happens next.

You'll come across a lot of familiar faces as you unlock new characters.
You’ll come across a lot of familiar faces as you unlock new characters, such as Garnet and Vivi from FFIX.

Gameplay is very familiar–it’s almost like playing a Super Nintendo-era RPG.  Unlike Final Fantasy Record Keeper, where all you did was controll your characters in battle, FFBE has dungeons and cities to explore, secrets to find, and side quests to undertake.  Besides the main story and side quests, there are a lot of other things to do while playing.  There is a crafting element to the game, so you can create new weapons, armor, abilities, and helpful items; a Colosseum game mode that allows you to take your party through an increasingly difficult set of fights; and the Vortex, which are basically bonus maps you can unlock that lets you earn extra gil, experience, or items.  There are also daily quests to fulfill just based on participating, so if you get in on all of these extra gameplay elements, you’ll also be constantly unlocking bonuses.  And you better be participating in these extra modes, since these are where you’ll primarily get the extra items you need to upgrade your espers and characters.

Look familiar?
Look familiar?

Fighting is super intuitive–if you’ve ever played an RPG, you’ll fall right into the rhythm.  Pretty much all of the Final Fantasy staples are here: special abilities, magic, Limit Breaks, summons, etc.  Early battles require very little strategy, but as you advance in the story, you’ll need to start paying close attention to the evocation and limit break gauges.

There are some of the typical elements we’ve come to expect in mobile games, although they seem way less intrusive in FFBE.  Every time to undertake a mission, it will use up some of your Energy.  Run out of Energy, and you have to wait for it to recharge, or you can use “Lapis” to recharge it.  You get Lapis from completing quests, and (surprise!) you can also purchase it using actual money in the game’s shop.  I’ve been playing for over a week, and I have yet to run out of energy enough to consider any in-game purchases.

Pale crystals rarely have anything great in them.
Pale crystals rarely have anything great in them.

You’ll also get Summon Tickets as you complete missions, and you can use those to unlock new units.  Of course, you could always purchase more Lapis and buy new units that way too.  New units come in crystals, and you give the screen a tap to break it.  In order of increasing rarity, you can get a white, blue, gold, or diamond crystal.  Your best units are in the diamond ones, but it’s all random, although the do weekly drop bonuses.  At the time this is being written, one of the drop bonuses is for Lightning from Final Fantasy XIII.

To conclude, Final Fantasy Brave Exvius is a very fun and high-quality mobile game.  I really feel that Square Enix has raised the bar for mobile RPGs with this game’s many gameplay elements, nostalgic aesthetic, and the fact that the most infamous of mobile game elements (using energy and microtransations) are kept to a minimum.  Give it a shot!

Andrew is a Geekiverse writer/editor who can’t think of anything witty to say, so…snoochie bootchies?

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