Forum Overview :: Reviews
Four Swords by Daverd 10/07/2004, 1:11pm PDT
With Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles, Square promised us all an awesome four-player simultaneous cooperative RPG. Then it sucked. Meanwhile, Nintendo got to work on a new Zelda game. It is everything that FF:CC should have been.

Summary of the plot as revealed in the first 5 minutes of gameplay:
Some sort of monster has been sealed inside a legendary sword known as the Four Sword. This sword is said to split its bearer into four copies of himself. It's rumored that if the sword is ever wielded again, the huge monster sealed inside will become free. Oh no! Princess Zelda was captured! You see a sword in front of you. Will you pull it out of the ground? [yes/no]

A quick comparison of FF:CC to Four Swords ensues.

FF:CC claims: Doesn't break the action by putting all of the menu-related things onto the player's GBA.
FF:CC reality: If you are doing things on your GBA, you will likely get killed (combat area) or slow the rest of the party down (town area).
Four Swords: There are no significant menus in the game to slow it down. Action and exploration are constant.

FF:CC claims: Offers a whole new level of cooperative play.
FF:CC reality: Most of the cooperation just involves healing each other when you're low on life.
Four Swords: The level of group coordination required is wonderful. Without offering any specific spoilers, I'll just say that the color of the Link that you control is important, and whenever color comes into play, all four Links are necessary to advance. These situations usually involve combat so things get pretty hectic. Lots of yelling (in the good way). Each Link can only hold one special item, and these are usually required to advance, (sometimes you need more than one at a time), so having the right Link in the right place is important.

FF:CC claims: Fun real time combat!
FF:CC reality: Fun for about the first 20 minutes. Then you realize you're never going to see any new weapons or spells.
Four Swords: Combat tends to hold your interest. Each level offers a new item or two and lets you come up with cool ways to mix it in with what you already have. For example, when my party got bombs for the first time, we found that we could have one Link place a bomb and then another Link could shoot it with an arrow to carry it over a distance into a monster. Things don't get old.

FF:CC claims: The use of the GBA adds a whole new dimension of gameplay.
FF:CC reality: The GBA is only used for tedious menus.
Four Swords: The GBA allows a much greater degree of independence from the party. Unlike with the bucket in FF:CC where everybody has to stay within 5 feet of each other, you can pretty much wander where ever you want in Four Swords (within some limitation.) The main area is displayed on the TV. If you enter a building or a cave, your gameplay shifts to the GBA where you can walk around there. Lots of "Hey guys, come here! I found something important!" moments. The limitation to how far you can wander usually involves needing another Link or three to help you push a block that's too big for you alone.

FF:CC claims: Mixes competition with cooperation.
FF:CC reality: Does a pretty good job of this.
Four Swords: I actually prefer the way FF:CC handled the competitive aspect. In Four Swords, the competitive aspect rests entirely in who can collect the most "force gems" by the end of the level. However, you have absolutely nothing to gain by winning this. In addition, you can hurt your team mates with certain items like bombs, and this causes them to drop force gems which you can then collect. This breaks down into lots of revenge and taking them back, and it generally just slows the game down for no reason because THEY AREN'T EVEN WORTH ANYTHING DAMMIT! I think I'm still pissed at the petty, overly competitive people in my party last time I played. God damn. One cool thing is that at the end of the level, you can secretly vote using your GBA on who you thought was the most helpful and the most annoying in the party. Again, doesn't affect the game at all, but still fun.

Here's my conclusion. FF:CC gets a 4/10 for being pretty and good in concept, but not very fun overall. Four Swords gets a 9/10 for doing everything better than FF:CC did.
Four Swords by Daverd 10/07/2004, 1:11pm PDT NEW
    Quick addition by Daverd 10/07/2004, 1:13pm PDT NEW
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