Dissidia Final Fantasy NT Review (PS4)on February 1, 2018 by Mitch Jay
The Dissidia games on PSP were a large part of my time with the beloved handheld, and I couldn’t get enough of them. I waited a long time to hear word of the series making its way to the current generation of consoles and, although it’s a bit different, it’s still very much Dissidia.
Set after the events of the previous Dissidia games, the warriors of Cosmos and Chaos are summoned again to fight in another war for light or dark. Materia, the Goddess of Protection, and Spiritus, the God of Destruction, are the ones who’ve summoned everybody, and they take on the roles of Cosmos and Chaos for this game. Each character remembers the events of the past games too which makes for some great conversations. Poor Noctis and Ace though, as they’re two of the only characters who are brand new to this game and so are not familiar with the rest of the cast.
Instead of being able to storm through the story as you might like, you need to fight to earn memoria which is used to unlock story segments. It sounds like a chore – and it looks like one too, at first – but it didn’t take very long until I had the entire grid unlocked. I played arcade mode and online a lot, so I ended up earning memoria at a healthy rate whilst naturally switching between the various modes offered.
If you’d like to blast through the story in one session then, sadly, you won’t be able to, but I recommend playing around with other modes too. Whilst this didn’t bother me, it does seem weird to lock it behind the memoria wall, especially as it’s so easy to obtain. I love seeing so many of my favourite characters interacting with each other, which has always been the big pull of Dissidia, and finding out the truth of why they’re being forced to fight once more. The narrative is more mysterious in this one, and I wasn’t quite sure how it would all pan out.
In action, its wonderfully simplistic mechanics thrive on reaction speed and knowing your characters.
Unlike the other Dissidia games which focused on 1v1 battles, Dissidia NT features 3v3 battles where you control one character in an attempt to beat the opposing team. You build bravery by attacking your opponents, and then you use the collected bravery to deal damage to your opponent’s health bar. It sounds a little weird, but in action, its wonderfully simplistic mechanics thrive on reaction speed and knowing your characters. Different moves are performed on ground and in the air, and moving the analog stick will change your attacks too.
Bravery attacks might not do any damage, but they’re necessary if you want to deal any meaningful damage during the match with your HP attacks. This system allows players to turn the tide of battle with one giant HP attack, but you’ll make a bigger target for yourself where you might find yourself ganged up on. Luckily, your teammates should be there to lend a helping hand, and you two skills in battle (with many to choose from when customising characters) that can keep danger at bay via buffs, debuffs, magical abilities and team-orientated abilities such as sharing bravery.
Dissidia may not have the depth that plenty of other fighters have, but that’s one of its appeals. It’s a chill fighter to play, and there’s certainly a difference between someone who knows what they’re doing and someone who doesn’t, and the roster consists of unique characters. Sure, you’ll likely pick your favourites, but the game’s various arcade routes and story challenges will force you to try a few characters who you might not have tried otherwise.
In story mode, you’ll find yourself fighting more than just other teams, because you need to prove your strength to various summons/eidolons to get them to join you on your adventure — you’ll unlock them randomly for use in other modes, though. These battles are hard, and you only have three lives per attempt. Most of their attacks are fatal, and learning its tells are vital to knowing when to avoid and when it’s safe to attack.
The game’s various arcade routes and story challenges will force you to try a few characters who you might not have tried otherwise.
You have to stagger them with bravery before being able to use your HP attacks, meaning you can’t tackle them in quite the same way that you might in a normal battle. I enjoy these battles, even though they can be frustrating, and they make for a nice change in pace. You can fight them one after the other in summon gauntlet too, once you’ve unlocked it — good luck!
There’s plenty to unlock including skins, weapons, avatars, titles and music tracks, and you also earn gil to buy these same items. I’ve unlocked a handful of skins already, mostly due to the games’ treasure system — which works similar to loot boxes — but there’re no microtransactions in sight. Treasure boxes are constantly earned, and it’s a great way of unlocking items which feels consistently rewarding.
Having participated in both of the betas, Dissidia NT has gotten better each time I’ve played it. It’s smooth, responsive and it feels like a Dissidia game — this might seem like an odd comment to you, but 3v3 is a far cry from 1v1! Character models and environments are gorgeous, with different skins and weapons for each character, and cutscenes are a joy to watch. The soundtrack, as expected, is outstanding with returning and arrangements of Final Fantasy songs from all the games included, as well as some entirely original songs.
Fans should pick this one up, and those looking for something a little different in the fighting scene might be pleasantly surprised by Dissidia Final Fantasy NT’s mechanics.
Dissidia Final Fantasy NT is a celebration of Final Fantasy, and it brings together many of the heroes and villains that we know and love. A mostly stable netcode, various arcade routes, and an entertaining story leave you with lots to play with. Its unique gameplay and emphasis on teamwork makes for great fun, although matchmaking sometimes leaves you with AI on your team against a full party, which is nothing short of extremely unfair — I’d rather it take longer, or not put me in a ranked game at all in that case.
I’d love to see more modes introduced for both online and offline, but Square Enix promise a steady stream of DLC characters to keep the game’s roster growing. Fans should pick this one up, and those looking for something a little different in the fighting scene might be pleasantly surprised by Dissidia Final Fantasy NT‘s mechanics.