The Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters provide a nostalgic update to some of gaming’s most important JRPGs, but not every change is for the better.
Final Fantasy games have seen a wide variety of remakes and rereleases over the years, but the Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters are a bit different. Each one features completely remade 2D graphics, along with a host of other changes.
The first Pixel Remaster collection features Final Fantasy 1-3, although each can be purchased separately as well. These deliver both an aesthetic face lift and various quality-of-life updates, making the classic games more approachable. Square Enix is also releasing Pixel Remaster versions of Final Fantasy 4-6 in 2021, presumably with the same kinds of changes.
While the Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters are great remasters of some of the most prolific JRPGs out there, a few issues keep them from being the undisputed definitive versions of their respective games. Here are some the best and worst changes in the Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters.
FF Pixel Remasters’ Best Changes – New Pixel Art
The most obvious change in the Pixel Remasters is the graphical update. Each sprite feels handcrafted for a more modern look, but the pixel style still gives the games a nostalgic vibe. It’s particularly notable in the case of Final Fantasy 3; this is the first time the “original” 2D version has been released in English, as only the 3D Nintendo DS remake and its ports were available before.
FF Pixel Remasters’ Best Changes – Remixed Soundtrack
Probably the best addition to the Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters is the gorgeous, remade soundtracks. Every track in all three games has been retooled with an orchestral rendition, oftentimes mixed with elements of rock. These are arguably the definitive versions of these soundtracks, and the music alone is a strong reason to play the Pixel Remasters.
FF Pixel Remasters’ Best Changes – Quick Save Options
They may seem like small adjustments, but the new save options are a needed quality-of-life change, especially since the Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters are on mobile platforms. Players can save anytime on the world map, in all three games, but even more useful is the quick save feature. Quick saving is hugely helpful when exploring dungeons, letting players create a save point they can easily go back to as insurance when going up against tough bosses.
FF Pixel Remasters’ Worst Changes – Terrible Font
The most baffling change in the Pixel Remasters is the English font, which is downright unreadable at times. Square Enix went with a non-pixilated, sans-serif font that bunches up the letters, making them difficult to read. Even worse is that the game doesn’t have an option to change font type. There are unofficial workarounds to fix the Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters’ font, involving swapping around a few files to use the English font from the Japanese-language versions.
FF Pixel Remasters’ Worst Changes – Skips Content Added In Earlier Ports
Unfortunately, the Pixel Remasters don’t contain any changes or additions from previous rereleases the games, such as Final Fantasy I & II: Dawn of Souls or the Final Fantasy 3 DS remake. Dawn of Souls added four brand-new dungeons to the first Final Fantasy and one to Final Fantasy 2, none of which are featured in the Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters. On top of that, none of these older versions’ gameplay tweaks are present.
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