Forum > Gaming Discussion > FFCC: The Crystal Bearers (Wii) Reviews coming in - from 5.5 to 8/10
FFCC: The Crystal Bearers (Wii) Reviews coming in - from 5.5 to 8/10
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Tue, 24 Nov 2009 03:34:56

Foolz said:

Dvader said:
Bebpo makes me not want to play this game.

Why so?

Short game, filled with tons of cutscenes. 10 battles, seriously.He says the gameplay is not really good. He describes a horrible game. No boss fights, wtf. The side stuff sounds good, but it needs a main story too.

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Tue, 24 Nov 2009 11:50:51


He did give it an 8.5 and said it was one of his favourite wii games. I know a few other guys who said it reminded them of Disaster, one of my personal faves. That's a good thing. I dont like how its open world yet not zelda i.e puzzles, dungeons etc with simplistic combat.

Anyhow, as ever I wait on reviews, if it gets lots of 8/10s I might bite but early next year is crammed with releases.

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Tue, 24 Nov 2009 14:28:32

Eurogamer hands on Crystal Bearers "Essentially Star Wars: The Force Unleashed but with more chocobos and less crap dialogue" EditDelete

There are certain things you expect from a Final Fantasy game: a reluctant hero with a devil-may-care attitude, a hot feisty love interest, men who look a bit like girls, and a creepy little-sister character you're not sure you're meant to fancy. Something you don't expect in a Final Fantasy game is chasing a ferret through a shopping centre.

It's quite near the start of The Crystal Bearers, and the chalky-toothed rodent has stolen our hero Layle's magical gem. He wants it back, for some so-far-unexplained reason. In order to do that, I'll have to train the Wiimote's on-screen pointer over the sexually dimorphic predator long enough to fill a circular bar, and once this is done I can use Layle's telekinesis powers to pick the rodent up. Except he got away again. And now Layle's accidentally picked up an innocent bystander and flung him into a wall, sending coins everywhere. What in the name of Moogles is going on?

"We wanted to make a Wii game, but we wanted it to be a non-traditional Final Fantasy game," smiles Akitoshi Kawazu, the game's producer, and Square Enix's senior veepee of software development. "Crystal Chronicles was always an action based-IP, so going back to that world seemed like the perfect fit for a casual gaming audience." Kawazu knows a thing or two about Final Fantasy: he wrote the original Final Fantasy game way back in 1987, and has subsequently made himself a career as the Red Adair of Square, specialising in shepherding games going through "difficult" gestation periods. He was heavily involved in the eventually phenomenal Final Fantasy XII, for example.

It's clear that Crystal Bearers is one such difficult project, because after its announcement in 2005 there was very little information on it for a good few years. The release date was pushed back to 2007, then 2008, then 2009, and now we won't see it till early 2010 in the UK. According to Kawazu, much of that time was spent trying to make it work: "Square Enix hasn't been big on action games traditionally, and we were struggling to convince ourselves that this could be a good game," he says. "Even when we believed it was good, it was a struggle to get other parts of the company to see its merit. So that took a long time. We had to make sure that the game would be very appealing, and that was painstaking."

'Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers' Screenshot 1

The physics engine is surprisingly robust.

With this in mind, Crystal Bearers seems remarkably cohesive. Essentially Star Wars: The Force Unleashed but with more chocobos and less crap dialogue, it starts off at the pace of a Michael Bay film, as set-piece after set-piece spools onto the screen. Even the usul, interminably long conversations are conducted while the speakers indulge in showy fighting and jumping through windows. The game opens with Layle and his androgynous friend Keiss acting as bodyguards for the airship Alexis. The ship is soon under attack, and impulsive Layle flings his gun into the air, then dives after it, beginning an aerial shooting gallery section that sees you moving your pointer over dragons to shoot them out of the sky.

After defending the ship, a mysterious Yuke called Amidatelion appears from a portal and fights with Layle. You're also introduced to Belle, a sexy young Selkie photojournalist who'll no doubt cause Layle to blush and rub the back of his neck at some point. Thanks to Amidatelion's destructive actions, the ship begins to fall from the sky, and quick-thinking Layle must pilot it through a canyon. "We wanted Layle to be a character who could face adversity without losing his mind," says Toshiyuki Itahana, the game's director. Using the nunchuk stick to control the ship's sluggish turning proves tricky. After a few horrendous wall scrapes, it seems unlikely that a career as an airship pilot beckons.

Parking the ship at a nearby city, I finally get full control of Layle and see what he can do. Movement is on the nunchuk, while his Crystal Bearer telekinesis power is handled with the Wiimote pointer. Having a Final Fantasy character chucking bits of scenery around makes this one of the more immersive games in the series; rather than feeling like you're wandering through a series of exquisite paintings, you can actually affect the locations you're visiting, using your powers to rip the tops off fire hydrants or pull newspapers from people's hands. Almost anything or anyone can be moved, although they may not be happy about it.

Asked whether the idea for object manipulation came before or after the Wii's specifications were announced, Kawazu reveals that there were originally meant to be many different powers for the player to explore: "Some of the early characters could cause instant death, or putrification - one could toy with gravity, and the more we experimented, the more he seemed to suit the Wii the best." Soon after, you bump into the Lilty Princess Althea, and find yourself chasing after her naughty ferret, which in turn leads to a dramatic chocobo-back chase through the city's surrounding woodland.

If you're one of those gamers who make snide comments about the amount of waggle in Wii games, then start running for the hills, because it's everywhere. During the chocobo chase, for example, you'll mainly be targeting enemies and the interactive environmental hazards you can use against them (destroying bridge supports, causing landslides, etc), but if one of the pursuing Lilty guards gets too close to your cart you'll have to shake the controller as if your life depends on it - because it does, and failure will send you right back to the start of the sequence.

Those with a fondness for more obscure JRPG's may be thinking this all sounds distressingly familiar. Seiken Densetsu 4 (aka Dawn of Mana in the US) on PS2 used a similar object-manipulating mechanic for battling to miserable effect, and Crystal Bearers doesn't entirely improve on it. There's a slight delay before objects are picked up as you wait for the circular bar to fill. Presumably this is to give you time to cancel the action if you aim poorly, but it does seem to destroy the flow of the action considerably at this (admittedly early) stage of the game.

'Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers' Screenshot 2

How Aeris could have done with a gravity gun.

Crystal Bearers is a risky project that doesn't hesitate to do things differently - after the shooting gallery opening you get a giant score plastered across the screen, and, similarly, success at the canyon driving section offers you a completion time. It's the least Final Fantasy thing I've ever seen, and I haven't even mentioned the Awards (think Achievements) that are constantly flashing up on-screen. It's the ultimate feel-good 'press-button-get-bacon' mechanic, and it's instantly rewarding. According to Itahana it would take almost 60 hours to get every one, although the game's main story is a positively nippy (by JRPG standards anyway) 15 hours by comparison.

Kawazu says the game was developed at a difficult time for Square Enix, and that it took a while before he was convinced that the potentially lightweight Crystal Bearers could be a great game. While it's undoubtedly fresh for a Final Fantasy effort, the biggest challenge is yet to come, as the game lines up in one of the most packed first quarters in recent memory. Look out for our review closer to release.

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Wed, 25 Nov 2009 11:41:11
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Thu, 26 Nov 2009 11:02:38

http://wii.rpgsite.net/previews/155/174/the-crystal-bearers-import-impressions.html


rpgsite said:


The Crystal Bearers has been a bit of a staple for us at Square Enix events in the past few months. It was right at the front of Square Enix's E3 2009 booth, and also took pride of place at both GamesCom in Germany and this year's Tokyo Game Show.

Thanks to that it's slightly weird to be sitting down to play the game in a private situation. While The Crystal Bearers stood out at the shows, the charm and high production values really shine in a nice, dark room with the volume turned up.

For those of you who haven't read any of our previous Crystal Bearers coverage including a detailed preview and Interview with the Director, despite sporting the Final Fantasy: Crystal Chronicles moniker it's probably not what you might think.



The Crystal Bearers is a single-player, story-driven title rather than the multiplayer story-light affairs that have previously populated that series. It's also largely driven by action gameplay rather than RPG battle mechanics, and has a story that is unashamedly shorter than the average RPG.

The game's director described it to us as "Open, Free Action" at E3 2009, and the man actually has the feel of the Crystal Bearers down pretty well with that statement, though depending on how you play the game the 'open' aspect might not seem so true.

This is because The Crystal Bearers is packing a simple, linear story mode which is essentially a series of well directed and produced cutscenes strung together by a plethora of different challenges hero Layle will tackle, each often sporting unique control methods.

Some have taken to calling these mini games, but I'd prefer to refer to them as I did above as challenges. 'Mini-games' to me conjures images of Final Fantasy VIII's Triple Triad or Nintendo's Mario Party series, and the gameplay of The Crystal Bearers has little in common with either of those.

Challenges cover a variety of areas - some will have you platforming, while others will have you pointing and shooting at enemies using the Wii remote. Many will have you harassing the animals and people that inhabit the Crystal Chronicles world, using Layle's telekinesis to pick up and manipulate people and objects.



It's very difficult to describe or even critique the gameplay in The Crystal Bearers, as there's very little consistency in what you're actually doing. You spend little time directly fighting enemies, often solving problems via proxies such as using the weapons of enemies or the environment against them.

The storyline is refreshingly straightforward, with no padding or forced side-missions to stretch the length of the game, instead offering up a simple adventure that'll take you eight hours or so to complete. Cutscenes will constantly propel you forward and the game has a great sense of momentum with the storyline never running out of steam.

The game isn't short though - the game has a massive number of side quests, offering a great variety of extra stuff for those who enjoy the game enough to warrant longer gameplay. These aren't lazy side quests either, with some having their own unique gameplay twists to them despite being optional.

There's also a cool Medal system which unlocks rewards for completing various tasks, many of which will require side-quests to complete. Even with this The Crystal Bearers isn't a full 40-hour RPG, though it does offer a respectable 15+ hours for your cash.

There's other small, fun aspects to The Crystal Bearers, such as the interaction with NPCs which employs a Fable-like emotion system indicated by icons above the heads of NPCs. Characters will get angry if you abuse them and love you if you help them out - it's a simple but serviceable system. You can even use the emotion system to stop enemies from attacking you.



Underneath all this action and story-driven gameplay there are some traditional RPG elements. There's equipment to upgrade and statistics to pool over. There's also a cool item synthesis system, possibly a hold-over from FF9, which many of this game's team worked on.

Money, accessories and equipment don't matter here as much as they do in other RPGs, but it's nice to have them there - a familiar friend in a very differently styled Japanese RPG.

Despite extremely cool ideas, the gameplay of The Crystal Bearers can often be underwhelming and overly simplistic - how the game plays is never the star of the show.

That accolade goes to the presentation of the game. The game is by far and away the best looking title I have ever seen for the Nintendo Wii, and if Square Enix can be proud of anything about The Crystal Bearers it's about how wonderful it looks at every moment regardless of if you're inside a dark dungeon or out in the large, open wilderness.

The storyline is one of the most refreshingly simple, fun, and exciting elements of the game, with the direction in the cutscenes also impressive for the Wii. It's clear a lot of love went into this game, and I for one am hugely excited to see how the English localization comes out.



Some people may struggle with the 'channel flicking' mentality of the gameplay, constantly switching what's going on and how you do it - but I personally found it fun, and the switching didn't get old as the game's excellent story did a great job of driving me forward to the next fun challenge.

In short, Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers is a fairly fun Action RPG with multiple gameplay modes made into something much more worth your time thanks to stunning graphics and a really well executed storyline.

I'm definitely looking forward to enjoying it in my native tongue, and we'll bring you a full review closer to the English language release.

The Crystal Bearers is out in North America on December 26th, while it'll arrive in Europe on February 5th. You can pre-order it here.  

Hmmm, it does sound like Disaster Day of Crisis, but with great graphics.

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Thu, 03 Dec 2009 20:35:27
New Final Fantasy Crystal Bearers Trailer The fate of the lost Yuke tribe hangs in the balance. Find out more in this must-see story trailer.

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Mon, 14 Dec 2009 07:51:51

gamingeek said:

Impressions from Bebpo from GAF

Of the 9 hour main game, I would guess 5-6 hours are cutscenes. You just play the bits between.
WTF? LOL

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Tue, 15 Dec 2009 01:09:03

Ravenprose said:

gamingeek said:

Impressions from Bebpo from GAF

Of the 9 hour main game, I would guess 5-6 hours are cutscenes. You just play the bits between.
WTF? LOL

God damn, is that serious?

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Tue, 15 Dec 2009 12:19:41

Foolz said:

Ravenprose said:

gamingeek said:

Impressions from Bebpo from GAF

Of the 9 hour main game, I would guess 5-6 hours are cutscenes. You just play the bits between.
WTF? LOL

God damn, is that serious?

The producer says it will take you 30+ hours to do everything in the game.

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Wed, 16 Dec 2009 01:16:08

gamingeek said:

Foolz said:

Ravenprose said:

gamingeek said:

Impressions from Bebpo from GAF

Of the 9 hour main game, I would guess 5-6 hours are cutscenes. You just play the bits between.
WTF? LOL

God damn, is that serious?

The producer says it will take you 30+ hours to do everything in the game.

Like watch ALL the custcenes? Nyaa

Seriously, though, TP is meant to be 100 hours long.

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Wed, 16 Dec 2009 10:18:36

Foolz said:

gamingeek said:

Foolz said:

Ravenprose said:

gamingeek said:

Impressions from Bebpo from GAF

Of the 9 hour main game, I would guess 5-6 hours are cutscenes. You just play the bits between.
WTF? LOL

God damn, is that serious?

The producer says it will take you 30+ hours to do everything in the game.

Like watch ALL the custcenes? Nyaa

Seriously, though, TP is meant to be 100 hours long.

No it's not. They said something like 50-60 hrs. And yes I spent over 60 hrs first time through doing everything.

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Wed, 16 Dec 2009 18:09:30
gamingeek said:
Foolz said: 

Like watch ALL the custcenes? Nyaa

Seriously, though, TP is meant to be 100 hours long.

No it's not. They said something like 50-60 hrs. And yes I spent over 60 hrs first time through doing everything.

http://www.joystiq.com/2005/11/17/twilight-princess-to-feature-100-hours-of-gameplay/

Edited: Wed, 16 Dec 2009 18:09:46

---

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Wed, 16 Dec 2009 18:14:29

Yodariquo said:
gamingeek said:
Foolz said:

Like watch ALL the custcenes? Nyaa

Seriously, though, TP is meant to be 100 hours long.

No it's not. They said something like 50-60 hrs. And yes I spent over 60 hrs first time through doing everything.

http://www.joystiq.com/2005/11/17/twilight-princess-to-feature-100-hours-of-gameplay/

Different PR guys give different responses, this one says 70 hrs

http://www.gamepro.com/article/news/85328/gamepro-q-a-nintendos-harrison-on-zelda/

Other's I've seen have said anything from 50-70.

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Wed, 16 Dec 2009 18:28:05

Foolz said:

Like watch ALL the custcenes? Nyaa.

LOL

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Thu, 17 Dec 2009 13:23:55

Gamesradar review Crystal Bearers 7/10 EditDelete

The game also makes motion controls a main attraction as players steer the third person action adventure entirely with the Wii Remote and Nunchuk.  But before you can mutter “waggle fest,” you’ll find Crystal Bearers is just too pretty to tear your eyes from even long enough to roll them. That and it’s pretty fun, too.

Players take the role of Layle – a Crystal Bearer who hires himself out as an escort to various airship parties. At the beginning of the story, he and his friend Keiss have a run-in with a bizarre creature that looks like a metal rooster with a cape. Within the first three hours of exposition and tutorials, we learn that the four races on the planet are in peril unless Layle can find all three pieces of a missing crystal and avoid the clutches of a treacherous military man. Along for the ride are Keiss, the metal rooster, an annoying thief and a princess with pinkish hair.

Layle’s status as a Crystal Bearer gives him telekinetic abilities and a weird splotch on his face that looks a little bit too much like semen. While moving him around the broad, rich world map either on foot, Chocobo, train or warp point using the analog stick on the Nunchuk, you can aim a targeting reticule at just about anything using the Wii Remote. With a simple button press, Layle can grab items, enemies or non-playable characters. With a well-timed flick of the remote, he can fling them, shake them or bring them toward himself to throw or set down. Layle can also deflect projectiles and dodge using variations on the grab-and-flick controls.

All in all, the motion controls work well for the game. They let you explore the environment, cause all kinds of civil unrest on public transit and lend themselves well to a series of minigames like cherry-picking and Chocobo racing. The biggest challenge is mastering advanced combat – because grabbing enemies and bouncing them around doesn’t do quite as much damage as one might hope. Instead, you’ve got to master the art of snapping into third person while holding an object overhead so that Layle can target and throw – that’ll make combat a snap.

The only glaring problem with the controls is the camera. You can take control of it to pan around or snap it directly behind Layle with a button hold or press. However, you can’t really spare your fingers during jumping puzzles or minigames – so if the camera defaults to an awkward perspective that makes it impossible for you to see the next jump point or the goal in a minigame, you’re pretty much screwed unless you grow a sixth and seventh finger on each hand

The gameplay in Crystal Bearers is easily upstaged by its visuals. Aside from being just plain beautiful between sweeping vistas and intricate backgrounds, the art direction creates appealing character and environmental designs that suck you into the story even if you don’t quite understand the plot or resent the fact that some areas are more linear than your average RPG. You’ll stare at costumes with elaborate jewelry and realistic-looking chainmail, examine the patterns on everything from grapevines to lampposts and get a real kick out of staring at the capital city as you whiz by on an air trolley with picture windows.

Sightseeing becomes a problem only once you’ve opened up more than a third of the world map. This happens well before you gain the ability to use warp points, so you’ve got to go everywhere either on foot or by riding a Chocobo. There are street signs posted throughout the world at every convenient angle – but it’s just so hard to know where you’re going sometimes that you’ll find yourself checking and re-checking the map and desperately looking for the one Moogle who seems to know where everything is.

The absolute best part of the game is all of the stuff you can do besides the main plot. Not that the main plot isn’t fun – it’s just that the minigames are limited to chases, jumping puzzles and the occasional weirdness like ballroom dancing. There’s so much more to do besides that, like fishing and grape-gathering and endless quests for treasure chests and synthesis materials. Stopping the main plot to synthesis grind is definitely worth your while in Crystal Bearers; you can increase Layle’s typical stats as well as buff cool stuff like the range of his telekinesis.

The one thing that will ruin Crystal Bearers for you is if you can’t take the waggle. The game isn’t asking you to throw your rotator cuff out to complete it – but the temptation to grab-and-fling everything that isn’t nailed down is pretty strong. So maybe you should invest in some Icy Hot if you think you can’t resist.

P.S. Cutest. Moogles. Evar.


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Thu, 17 Dec 2009 13:52:26

Well that's an interesting review.

Mainly because it reads like an impressions post on a board.

So the camera is sucky and its hard to know where you are going. Otherwise good.

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Thu, 17 Dec 2009 13:59:08

gamingeek said:

P.S. Cutest. Moogles. Evar.

WTF is a Moogle? That weird flying thing in that pic? It reminds me of these:


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Thu, 17 Dec 2009 14:06:09

Ravenprose said:

gamingeek said:

P.S. Cutest. Moogles. Evar.

WTF is a Moogle? That weird flying thing in that pic? It reminds me of these:


There is so much wrong with you it's hard to take. Nyaa

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Thu, 17 Dec 2009 14:40:45
Kupo!
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Thu, 17 Dec 2009 14:49:08

SteelAttack said:
Kupo!

Is it sad that I had to Google that word to find out what it was?

Urban Dictionary

1. Kupo

(1)
'Kupo' - The word that is uttered at the end of sentance by the creature Moogle. The meaning of this word is unknown.

'Unkupo' - This word's meaning is in a range of definitions, (Bad, Not Good, Horrible, etc.)

'Kupopo' - Is sometimes uttered at the beggining of a sentance, exact meaning is not certain but is sometimes said with questionable tone before asking a question or ending... But could also be uttered in normal sentances.

(2)
Kupo is a vocabulary word that is said by small winged creatures called, Moogles. The meaning of Kupo is not very clear at the moment but is used only by Moogles.
"How are you, Kupo?" -
"This is creepy, Kupo..."
"Hey, Kupo!"
"Kupopo? Are you sure, Kupo?"
"ARE YOU NUTS, KUPO!"
"That was unkupo..."
"WTF, Kupo?" LOL
Edited: Thu, 17 Dec 2009 14:51:24

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