Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time

Review

posted 5/19/2009 by Cyril Lachel
other articles by Cyril Lachel
One Page Platforms: Wii
Sadly most of the problems seem to involve connection issues. When I played the game online with friends I found the lag to be more than I was willing to put up with. Even when playing with a Nintendo DS in the same room, I found that we would have regular connection issues. And then there's the matter of actually trying to play with anybody in the first place. Because you need to confirm friend codes, you can't just play the game online right out of the box. My friend and I had so many problems connecting that we eventually had sync the systems up locally just to get it to work. There's no reason I should have to jump through this many hoops just to play a game that is supposed to be all about multiplayer questing.

In case you haven't been paying attention to the development, Echoes of Time was originally set to be a Nintendo DS game. For whatever reason, Square Enix decided to port this portable game to the Wii. As you can imagine, porting a DS game to the Wii results in a number of problems, chief among them being the difference in graphics. Unfortunately this is a straight port, so the graphics haven't been improved at all. They are, for better or worse, blown up versions of the DS's two screens.

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That's right, two screens. In an inspired decision, Square Enix decided to allow you to see both screens simultaneously. Instead of one being on top of another, Echoes of Time features two screens side by side. You can increase and decrease the size by using the plus and minus buttons, but you can never get rid of one and go full screen on the other. This solution isn't perfect, it makes switching spells, equipping items and using the second screen a real chore. What's more, when your cursor is on the menu screen, you are unable to attack and use magic. Usually this isn't a problem, but from time to time I found myself accidentally going into menus when I really wanted to fight a boss. It's all very annoying and I find it hard to believe that Square Enix couldn't come up with a better solution to the two screen conundrum.

The rest of the game's presentation is equally bad. The music understandably sounds like it was pulled from a Nintendo DS game ... because it was. The voice acting is stiff and lifeless. The music repeats far too much. There's just nothing about the game's presentation that you will remember, and maybe that's a good thing.

Unfortunately what you will remember is all of the frustrating (and out of place) 3D platforming puzzles, the nonsensical storyline and the boring cinemas. The game is not so terrible that you curse ever putting it in your system, but it's also not good in any way. You will have forgotten large chunks of the game only minutes after turning it off for the last time. As much as I love the idea of a multiplayer Final Fantasy game, I demand more from my spin-offs.


C-
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time is more than a really long title, it's also a multiplayer game with a whole host of game breaking problems. It is a game with a small cast of unlikeable characters, a boring story, lame locations and did I mention the technical problems? Echoes in Time is as mediocre as you can get. Surely you can do better than this.


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