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Final Fantasy Tactics (series)

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The Final Fantasy Tactics series is a series of tactical role-playing games developed by Square Co., now Square Enix. It consists of four titles, Final Fantasy Tactics, its remake Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions, Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, and the sequel to Advance, Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift. The games are set in the Ivalice setting of the Final Fantasy series.

The first title, Final Fantasy Tactics was released for the Sony PlayStation in 1997 (Japan) and in 1998 (United States), and then remade and enhanced as Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions, released in 2007 (worldwide) for the Sony PlayStation Portable. The second title, Final Fantasy Tactics Advance was released on the Nintendo Gameboy Advance in 2003 (worldwide), and had a sequel Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift released on the Nintendo DS in 2007 (Japan) and in 2008 (United States, Europe).

Setting

Ivalice, the setting of the series, was first shown in Final Fantasy Tactics as a fictional kingdom. Its geography features ranging landscapes, from plains to mountains ranges to deserts and forests. It is heavily populated by human beings, although intelligent monsters can be found living in less populated areas. Magic is predominant in the land, although ruins and artifacts indicated that past populace had relied on machinery, such as airships and robots.[1] The setting was created as a medieval-like world where magic and machine exist together; with usual elements of Final Fantasy; such as Chocobos, Crystals and magic spells, blended into its setting.

In Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, the protagonist lives in a land called St. Ivalice. Following the characters' discovery of the book called the Gran Grimoire, St. Ivalice was transformed into a "mirror" of the "real" kingdom of Ivalice.[2] The races seen in the world of Tactics Advance—Bangaa, Moogle, Viera and Nu Mou—reappear in the game Final Fantasy XII, the setting of which has come to represent the "real" Ivalice.[3] The sequel to the game, Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift, also takes place in both St. Ivalice and the Ivalice of Final Fantasy XII.[4]

Besides the Final Fantasy Tactics series, Ivalice has appeared as the setting to Vagrant Story and Final Fantasy XII.

Music

The music of the Final Fantasy Tactics series, was primarily composed by Hitoshi Sakimoto, assisted by Masaharu Iwata, Nobuo Uematsu, Kaori Ohkoshi, and Ayako Saso. The Final Fantasy Tactics Original Soundtrack, a compilation of almost all of the music in the original game, was released by DigiCube in 1997, and re-released by Square Enix in 2006. As of 2008, no separate soundtrack has been released for Final Fantasy Tactics: The War of the Lions. The soundtrack was well received by critics, who found it to be astounding and one of the best video game music soundtracks in existence at the time of its release.

The Final Fantasy Tactics Advance Original Soundtrack, a compilation of almost all of the music in the Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, was released by DigiCube in 2003. This soundtrack was well received by critics, who praised the album's composition. A new age arrangement album entitled White: Melodies of Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, a selection of musical tracks from the game arranged by Yo Yamazaki, Akira Sasaki, and Satoshi Henmi, was released by SME Visual Works in 2003. However, critics did not react as well to this album, finding it to be a mediocre with poor arrangements.

The music for Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift was also composed by Hitoshi Sakimoto, this time with the assistance of composers from his company Basiscape. The music was released as Final Fantasy Tactics A2: Grimoire of the Rift Original Soundtrack by Square Enix in 2007. It was enjoyed by reviewers, who found it to be pleasant and rewarding.

References

  1. Agrias: I hear a 'lost civilization' is hidden under Goug.... When St. Ajora was alive, airships were in the sky, and human robots in town. But time passed, technology was lost, and no one knows if it ever really existed. Squaresoft. Final Fantasy Tactics (in English). (Square Co.). PlayStation. (1997-06-20)
  2. Square Enix. Final Fantasy Tactics Advance. (Square Enix). GameBoy Advance. (2006-10-31)
  3. Studio BentStuff, ed (2006) (in Japanese). Final Fantasy XII Ultimania Omega. Square Enix. p. 146. ISBN 4-7575-1821-8. 
  4. Harris, Craig (2007-05-16). Interview: Final Fantasy Tactics A2. Retrieved on 2007-07-14.

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