It's been a long time coming yet Final Fantasy XV is finally upon us. Now that I've finished the first three chapters, I figured it would be a good time to put together an article of my thoughts on the journey so far. Warning: there will be spoilers!
Prologue: Insomnia's Waking Nightmare
The first scene of Final Fantasy XV shows Noctis and pals in the future fending off a fiery demon. So, how did they get there? Jump to present day where we see Noctis and his father (the king of Lucis). The king reminds him that royal blood flows through his veins and mentions that Noctis can't return once he begins his journey. Along with his friends Ignis, Gladio, and Prompto; Noctis jumps into their trusty car (the Regalia) to begin their travels where he will meet his bride-to-be Luna. Well, that's certainly a delightful place to begin a story. Anyway, let's move on.
Chapter 1: Departure
As fate would have it, the Regalia broke down so the gang had to push it to a gas station while a contemporary rendition of "Stand by Me" played. I must admit, that made me laugh. Upon arriving at a station, they meet the large-breasted and annoyingly folksy mechanic Cindy and her grandfather Cid. After they help by completing a few side-quests, they journey to a port but find out that the boats aren't running. The next morning, Noctis learns that Insomnia (the capitol of Lucis) had been attacked by the evil empire of Niflheim and his dad was killed in the process. They journey to Insomnia to see the wreckage for themselves yet they find little hope remaining.
Chapter 2: No Turning Back
The group heads to a tomb where they meet Cor (one of the king's loyal chums). He tells Noctis that he must gather the souls of previous kings by visiting their tombs scattered across the land before he can become the true king. He takes this news like a kid who doesn't want to do his homework which I found to be rather pathetic. A JRPG with a reluctant hero? No way. This chapter concluded with a pretty epic battle in an enemy base where Cor helped us defeat a military official. Things just got real, son!
Chapter 3: The Open World
Noctis and his bros travel to meet Gladio's sister Iris. While chatting with her, we find out that we just missed Luna who was in town. Are these two star-crossed lovers ever going to get married? If they did, it would definitely help break up the almost constant sausage party. Anyway, Noctis obtains another soul conveniently placed behind a waterfall. After, they see Ardyn (a mysterious informant) who then showed them the way to their next destination where something quite interesting was awaiting them...
Starting off on the wrong foot
Honestly, I'm not that impressed with Final Fantasy XV so far. The world is gorgeous and huge and there are loads of quests to take on and places to explore. That's all wonderful, but the story is pretty weak at this point. I feel that it's a bit forced and could have definitely used a much longer prologue. As of right now, I don't really care about any of the characters. They've grown on me a little after playing through the first three chapters but I still wouldn't be too sad if anything happened to any of them. I know that sounds harsh yet very little is done to pull the player into these characters' lives other than showing them have awkward conversations about who Noctis would like Prompto to take more photos of. I did get to play a pretty nifty pinball game called Justice Monsters Five, though.
Although Final Fantasy XV has been a bit disappointing, I'm planning on playing through it while regularly writing play journals. Once I finish it, I'll put a review together. After all, that's when games should be reviewed. So, stay tuned for more impressions and my final review after I complete the whole thing. Also, leave a comment below and we can chat about the epically bromantic journey.