A few months ago, I did a special on the first half of the Final Fantasy series, where I briefly touched upon this iteration of the series. With Final Fantasy IV hitting the Nintendo DS shortly (as evidenced by aDam’s video review of it below), hardcore FF fans will want to check out its predecessor as soon as possible. This remake is the first and only international release of Final Fantasy 3. It blends together what made the original version of the game unique with some new innovations that help keep it fresh for today’s gaming audience.

As you know, this is a re-imagining of the original NES game. The plot is similar, as four orphans set out to save the world by finding the four crystals. The game if famous for introducing the job system. The job system allows players to customize their party by assigning characters a job, such as black mage, warrior, monk, and red mage. You can change a character’s job at any time, and each job has its own advantages and disadvantages. You start out with a few jobs to select from in the beginning of the game, but as you progress, you’ll gain more. The job system shows up again in various forms throughout the series, particularly FFV and FFXI.

This version of the game sees a number of changes to make it fit for the DS. First of all, the four youths are given their own names and backstories. Secondly Square-Enix updated the visuals to give the game a 3-d polygonal look, reminiscent of FF IX. While the visual quality is less than that of a PS1 FF game, the visuals push the Nintendo DS to its limit, and allow for zooming in and out of the camera. There are even some pre-rendered FMV cinematics. There is also Wi-fi connectivity, as you can send and exchange messages with friends via Mognet. You can even unlock new jobs this way.

Be warned, despite the updates, this game is as old school as it gets, meaning that random encounters are all too frequent, enemies tend to be more cheap than they need to be, you need to spend a lot of time leveling up, and there are times when the plot seems as though it was scripted by fifth graders. Even so, this game stands the test of time and remains every bit ass innovative as it was when it was first released. Any fan of Final Fantasy, as well as any fan of old school RPGS will want to add this to their collection.