PlayStation 2
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Platform: PS2 ESRB: Teen (Blood, Violence) Publisher: Squaresoft (now Square-Enix) Developer: Squaresoft Genre: Role Playing Game (RPG)

Final Fantasy X begins in the city of Zanarkand where a blitzball (basically a game of underwater soccer) game is taking place, and you are Tidus, the star player of the Zanarkand Abes. The crowd cheers as your team takes the first point, suddenly a giant monster comes up out of the ocean and starts destroying Zanarkand! The blitzball game comes to an abrupt stop as the sphere containing the water is destroyed. You end up surviving the ordeal, and meet a man named Auron who gives you a sword and together you begin to fight waves of creatures that came off the giant monster. After you vanquish the fiends (as Auron calls the monsters in the game) Auron takes you to the massive swirling cloud of evil, the giant monster called Sin. Any fears you might have had of facing the thing are immediately quenched as Auron lifts you up and thrusts you right into Sin! Sin instantly absorbs you and you find yourself in a very strange place, your story begins here.

Graphics

Unless you live a ways into the future, it is safe for me to tell you that the graphics in this game are quite good, and still hold up to some of the best the PS2 has to offer. The graphics have a few different levels of detail, the lower level of detail is used when you\'re in battle, or just walking around. The medium level of detail is used in the less important rendered cutscenes, and the higher is used in the more important rendered cutscenes, also there are some CG cutscenes that look as good as or better than Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within. The past Final Fantasy games have used alot of pre-rendered backgrounds, this time around they have cut back quite a bit on those, in fact most of the environments you see are in full 3D (and that\'s a good thing)! Also, battles are very cinematic, and include some awesome visual effects.

Sound

The other Final Fantasy games had so much content they had no room for voiceovers and still had to be put on multiple discs. This time there are voiceovers, and its not because of a lack of content, it\'s because of the dvd drive built in to the PS2, now they can fit about 6 cd\'s on one DVD! The sound effects, and music are better than ever. Thats about all there is to say about the sound.

Gameplay

Recent Final Fantasy games have used a time based battle system, this time they have decided to go for the turn based approach. You can also switch characters in the middle of a battle. The way you level up has also changed, instead of a pre-set path of abilities, you get to choose your own path through a nifty new interface called the sphere-grid. While you should probably keep your characters in their own areas of the spere-grid, you can branch off into the other character's areas. So your power hitter could learn to use white magic, or you could teach your long range guy to use items against enemies. You can also summon massive creatures called aeons to do huge amounts of damage to your enemies. Every character, and aeon has an overdrive meter which can be set to go up when they take damage, when they do damage to monsters, and various other things, when the meter reaches the top that character gets to do an extremely powerful move, cast spells multiple times, do damage to multiple enemies, and a few other usefull things. Also every character\'s overdrives are unique, and are earned as you go throughout the game. During the course of the game you will encounter quite a few side quests and extra things you can do, these include capturing monsters, learning another language, and of course chocobo riding!

Appropriateness

This game suffers from the usual RPG problems, you can use magic, and there is a god called yevon in the game. While this can be looked at in a symbolic sense throughout most of the game, near the end you find out that if it was symbolic, it was so in a bad way. Also, some of the female characters, one of the bosses, and one of the summons, could do with a bit more clothing. There are a few swear words in the game as well, but nothing too major.

Overall

This is an awesome game, and it has just become a greatest hit! So if you've got no other RPG's to spend 60 hours of your life on, head out to your local Wal-mart and pick this one up! In conclusion, Final Fantasy X is an epic RPG that should not be missed (with some shortcomings in the appropriateness aspect)! There is one problem however, once you beat this game, you will be a slave to the Final Fantasy RPG series for a while. I'm still trying to force myself to play another RPG!

Final Ratings

Graphics: A+ Sound: A- Gameplay: A+ Appropriateness: C+

Overall: 92%

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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