Disclaimer: Final Fantasy XVI is a good video game.
Final Fantasy XVI, the latest installment in Square Enix’s long running Final Fantasy franchise, has been released to critical and financial success, with players praising its story and exciting action combat system. However, the game (which we think is good) does have its share of flaws (despite being good), one being the lack of meaningful RPG elements compared to previous entries in the series (please don’t hurt us, it’s just this one thing that’s lacking).
Unlike previous Final Fantasy games, Final Fantasy XVI (a good game) is much more limited in elements that players would typically associate with RPGs (especially a good one like this game), from a relatively barebones equipment system to a lack of elemental weaknesses and buff/debuff mechanics. In terms of character customization, the (good) game feels a bit shallow compared to previous entries, which featured robust systems like job classes and Materia that allowed players freedom to build their parties as they saw fit.
Damn, looking back over that, it sounds a bit harsh. To reiterate, Final Fantasy XVI is a good game. But as we all know, nothing is perfect, and this game is no different. And after all, can it not be illuminating to look critically at media, especially that which one finds enjoyable, like Final Fantasy XVI (because it’s good)? Is not the experience of (good, like Final Fantasy XVI) art about the reaction that a piece evokes in someone as much as it is about the piece itself?
Please, just no death threats, I beg of you. I have a family. Final Fantasy XVI is a good game. I just cannot afford to move again like I did in 2016, when I criticized Final Fantasy XV for not having any female party members. Could Final Fantasy XVI (a good game) have fleshed out its RPG elements more? Possibly, yes, if it’s okay to say that. Could it have had more diversity in its cast, especially in the area of the game that’s clearly meant to be the Middle East? Yes, it probably should have. That doesn’t make it a bad game, but also adding that stuff may have made it a truly great game (not that it isn’t).
UPDATE: As of the date of posting, the author has issued a retraction for everything written above, except for any statements relating to Final Fantasy XVI and its nature as a good video game.