I have mixed feelings about Square Enix gradually re-releasing all of its titles for iPhone and iPad devices; on the one hand, these are generally great titles that I really enjoy playing again. But at the same time, I’ve bought many of them over and over, and will probably do so again on Android somewhere down the line. In the greater balance of things, though, news of a Final Fantasy IV iOS release, set for December 20 with a $20 price tag, warms the cockles of my heart.
Final Fantasy IV (originally the second in the series here in the west) made its original debut back in 1991, for the Super Nintendo. It got a remake in 2008 for Nintendo DS, with updated 3D graphics, at which time I bought it again. I also have it as part of the PSP Final Fantasy IV complete collection, and on Nintendo’s Wii Virtual Console. I managed to avoid picking it up for the Game Boy Advance by some miracle. Final Fantasy IV is often lauded as among the best in the series, thanks to awesome storytelling and gameplay mechanics that helped shape and define the future of the RPG genre, and it’s definitely a game that stands the test of time.
The fact that it’s the 3D version of the game that will appear on mobile platforms (including Android at a later date sometime in early 2013) may disappoint some users who were hoping for the updated, but still 2D retro look of the PSP collection version. Also, pricing of $20, while in keeping with Square Enix’s mobile platform pricing, could be hard to swallow for users used to picking up Angry Birds-esque casual fare for $2 or less. But Square Enix’s announcement also comes with good new for the flinty: its other existing titles are on sale from early December through the new year.
Final Fantasy I and II on iOS and Android get price reductions from $8.99 to $3.99 for one week from Dec. 7- 14, and Final Fantasy III is nearly half price on iPhone and iPad, at $8.99 and $9.99 respectively during the same period. Final Fantasy Dimensions is $16.99, from the normally very high $28.99, and other titles are also on sale from Dec. 12 through January 7. If you were waiting to jump on board the Final Fantasy mobile nostalgia train, but balked at Square Enix’s relatively high prices, now is the time to snag these, because the company is fairly reserved when it comes to sales and discounts.