I see people arguing over this online, and plenty say FF16 is good because it apes GOT unlike other FF which to people are not as good or bad. What made this game so palatable to western audiences. Is it truly just GOT light...Is the gameplay not being so rpg heavy the good thing. Is the voice acting more approachable. Are the western audiences just becoming more open to Japanese made rpgs. Let me know.
Is Final Fantasy 16 good because it's like Game of Thrones?
No. First, I would like to point out that GoT isn't even the best comp here because FFXVI's story and gameplay are like 85-90% the same as Tales of Arise, just done much worse.
However, if using Game of Thrones is the comparison points, then it seems all the devs took from it was "It's Dark(TM)". They didn't take the time to understand why that darkness worked for GoT.
The game continually makes the mistake of showing events that are "dark" without not putting in the necessary time to establish context or get the player to care. For example, when the Red Wedding happens in the GoT show, viewers have had nearly three full seasons to get attached to the characters. You understand what's happening, why, and also what the events mean for the larger story.
By comparison, FFXVI tries to pull a similar trick right off the bat, and it completely falls flat. Bad things are happening, but I have no emotional investment in any of the characters (I couldn't tell you most of their names at that point), don't have any grounding in the major factions, who's driving events, or why. It just ends up being contextless misery porn.
Similarly, they show all these big battles and it's mostly just incomprehensible. I usually have no idea where things are taking place because while the game is more than happy to flash a fantasy place name on screen, the map doesn't have any labels on it so I have no idea where events are happening in relation to anything else. I usually don't know who is involved because the game has a depressing habit of introducing characters it clearly things are super-important and then not having them show up again for 10+hours. As a result I don't even know why most of these things are happening, which makes it really hard to care.
As far as the gamplay goes. No. Just no. I honestly don't have a problem if FF wants to be an action franchise, but if that's the case, then make a good action game. This is very much not a good action game. The combat is mind-numbingly shallow and repetitive with very few avenues for self-expression, unique use of abilities, or any need to use anything beyond the same basic-ass combos over and over and over again.
I haven't played FFXVI so I have no opinion on its story. But the "dark fantasy with political intrigue" thing long predates the GoT show, even within Final Fantasy, going back to, say, Tactics on PS1. This is something that can be done well or poorly and should be judged on its own merits. Triangle Strategy did this pretty well, IMO. Dragon Age: Inquisition tried something similar and, by my measure, failed, because it tried to skip to the intrigue without giving you any reason to care about what was happening. I think for this kind of story to work, it needs to be primarily character-focused. The political scheming is not very interesting in its own right - it only becomes interesting because of how it affects the characters. The reason GoT was so successful was because of its well-realized characters, not just because of its plot.
@therealturk: To be fair, to your point of the lack of set up time for the story. I see that lately most stories be it film, tv, games, are running on the new pacing people expect. No longer is a hook good enough people are spoon-fed so much dopamine to keep them interested. It's like TikTok levels of quick thrills ruined people being used to set up and pacing that isn't just set piece to twist to so on. So it hurts but the way things are, I get why they rush to the big thrills. It sells way better be it on a stream than say going 3 hours to set up characters more deeply. Giantbomb usually bounces off the more slow set up games, but they love this one. I think i wanna see jeff G's opinion on it since he would be the big line in the sand of whom they're trying to appeal to now. Be it mass market, old fans, new fans, so on. Sadly he's not on GB to input lol. I also see where it's annoying to just go straight up action game, but I also know hey that's where the money is. It's like how stealth games never show well since they look like they play COD style when i wanna do the sneaking. But an e3 showing wouldn't work with that and normal gamers would be bored. I'll try to meet the game on their terms though and hope it's good. Thanks for your input. Hope you turn around on the game as well.
Huh? No. What? This is such a goofy question to me. Putting aside the fact that a game can't be good just because it's "like" some other medium, I find it unlikely that the average person is like "THIS IS SO COOL JUST LIKE GAME OF THRONES". Especially after the way that show ended.
Game of Thrones didn't invent fantasy politics. We can all stop saying anything grimdark fantasy with nations is so like George Arr Arr Martin any day now.
To be fair, that's how everything goes. The most popular normie thing gets all the accolades and examples. Harry potter wasn't the first wizard school story. Lord of the rings wasn't the first fantasy story. Star wars wasn't the first space opera. You may just not like Game of Thrones but like dark souls which people hate i know like all popular things...it made an example of a genre by being popular and striking a note. Blame all the other series like it that kept on their laurels and didn't sell millions. Everywhere everything all at once is lauded as the most original thing in years...people who hate it wil tell you so much crazier exist...guess what no one cares, they see a crazy film and lable it best. Zelda is now the best game due to mechanics that were in other games...it's not about being first it's about being the first to matter.
PS: the first automobile didn't look like a Lexus...i wonder which people think about more to get.
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