Final Fantasy III

   One of two Final Fantasies never released outside of Japan, Final Fantasy III receives little attention, and its intricacies remain unknown to all but the most devoted fans. With RPG standards vastly changed nearly a decade later, can a remake of FF III still lure in fans?

   Gamers desiring a challenge will certainly want to give FF III a try. The title is infamous for its grueling dungeons, magically reproducing monsters, and strict inventory limits. But a high difficulty level is not FF III's only distinguishing characteristic; it also features two world maps, a wide selection of vehicles, and the last appearance of the Final Fantasy level-based magic system.

Fithos Lusec Wecos Vinosec
Kurse all SeeDs! [NES screenshot]

   Final Fantasy III is significant from a historical standpoint from as well, as many of the series' traditions got their start in the third installment. FF III was the first Final Fantasy to include summon spells, with the now-standard roster of Ifrit, Shiva, Ramuh, Bahamut, Leviathan, Odin, and others at summoners' disposal. The cute, lovable, and marketable Moogles also debuted in FF III, as well as Debu Chocobo. And how do you make Debu Chocobo appear? Why, you offer him one of the vegetables you purchased in the town of Gisahl, of course! Even a pre-FF VIII Hyne puts in an appearance as a boss.

A town called Tifa
Wow! It's VIVI in FF3! Wait, that's just a generic black mage

   As in Final Fantasy I, your party members are generic characters with assigned jobs (classes). In this game, however, they can switch jobs at any time -- a necessary tactic, since you only start off with one job and gain the rest at certain points in the story. In addition to the aforementioned summoner, many other new jobs debut in FF III: magic swordsman, geomancer, hunter, dragoon, and bard. While many jobs grant unique special commands, those skills aren't permanent. Unlike FF V or Tactics, FF III offers no way to equip the abilities of one job on another.

   Like the other WonderSwan remakes, Final Fantasy III will feature enhanced graphics and a new Amano-designed logo. Even enhanced as it is, its chances of coming to North America are slim -- but fans of the series may want to keep their fingers crossed anyway.

Preview by Fritz Fraundorf, GIA.
Final Fantasy III
Developer Square
Publisher Square
Genre Traditional RPG
Medium Cartridge
Platform WonderSwan Color
Release Date  Unknown
Final Fantasy I, II, III Wonderswan-bound
2 comparison screenshots