This game was not what I was expecting. I was expecting it to be, you know, good. Now, to be fair, I didn’t play the first Crystal Chronicles, so I was coming into this fresh. However, the first fifteen minutes of this game does not engender a lot of fun. It opens up with you flying through midair and shooting at flying dragon thingies, like a shooter. Not much like Final Fantasy. OK, whatever, I like shooting things. I can deal with that. Next, you fall on an airship and you have to try to fly it through a narrow, twisty canyon. This airship has the aerobatic capabilities of an anvil with a balloon attached. It’s fucking terrible. TURN WHEN I TURN THE GODDAMN WHEEL!
Then, after that harrowing experience, you wind up in town. Except nobody can talk. I pressed every button on the goddamn controller. All I could do was throw them around. Yes, I was running around throwing helpless women and children against floors and walls, and they didn’t seem to care. I could get on a train and manipulate the controls, giving me a reward while at the same time admonishing me for touching the controls. What?
Once you arrive from the train, you finally have someone to talk to – a moogle. He says one thing and then goes away, leaving me in a town of mutes once again. Then this dumb-ass girl with a ferret comes by and steals something from me, and I have to try to get it back. Except IT IS A GODDAMN PAIN IN THE ASS. See, you have to aim the cursor using the Wiimote at the target and hold down the B button for a determined period of time before you get a “lock.” This little ferret has such a small target and he kept running into other things that I kept grabbing on to stuff I didn’t want to. Worst of all, you have to repeat this SEVERAL TIMES and the fucker barely sits still. Jesus christ!
Finally, after all that is done, we’ve apparently pissed off the local army, and they decide to come fight us. Great! I’m ready for some fighting action. Except… we’re not really fighting them. We’re running away on a carriage, see. You’re stuck in the back of the carriage and need to dispatch the chocobo cavaliers by grabbing them with your magic powers and throwing them. This would be fine except IT’S RIDICULOUS. There’s a delay where you have to have them targeted for a second or so before you can actually grab them. The problem is that the targets are just not large enough. You have to be precisely on them, or it doesn’t count. There’s no “grab circle” that’s around them, for instance, and when you lock on if your cursor goes off even a pixel you lose the lock on. This is so frustrating that I wanted to throw the game into a wood chipper. The elevation changes and twists made it nearly impossible to grab the baddies with any consistency.
After getting through this Hellish nightmare, I wound up in a cave with annoying girl from the intro again. She’s kinda cute but quite irritating, as most early young Final Fantasy females are these days. In the cave, there’s some baddies. Cool, let’s fight them… except fighting consists of “grabbing rocks with poor controls and throwing them at the baddies.” Without a good freelook implementation, this was an excercise in frustration, and that’s where I called it quits. I very rarely have “Fuck this game” moments, but this was one of them. Perhaps it’s expectations, but I was expecting FINAL FANTASY and the tropes that go along with it, not this nonsense. It needed to give you more “help” with the cursor for grabbing things, like the new Bionic Commando did. That game had a lot of throwing/punching of various objects in your immediate vicinity and it was really quite easy to do thanks to its helpful lock on system. This… this was just frustrating because it was too precise and the freelook controls were just not all that good.
In short, fuck this game and the Gamefly wrapper it rode in on.