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Final Fantasy V
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|Final Fantasy V|
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Final Fantasy V is the fifth installment of the main Final Fantasy series. It was originally released for the Super Famicom in 1992. An original video animation produced in 1994, Final Fantasy: Legend of the Crystals, serves as a sequel to the events in Final Fantasy V.
The game was ported to the PlayStation in 1998. This version had an opening FMV added, and it was the first version that was released outside of Japan (as part of Final Fantasy Anthology). In 2006, Final Fantasy V was ported to the Game Boy Advance under the title Final Fantasy V Advance. In 2011, the PlayStation version was ported to the PlayStation Network. The Game Boy Advance version was used as the basis for the iOS and Android versions, both released in 2013, and for the Steam version released in 2015. The original Super Famicom version was ported to the Virtual Console on Wii, Wii U, and New Nintendo 3DS, although only in Japan.
One day, the world's wind currents inexplicably begin to slow. Concerned, the king of Tycoon flies off on his wind drake, Hiryu, to the Wind Shrine which holds the Crystal of Wind, only to see it shatter into pieces upon his arrival. Meanwhile, a meteorite plunges to the planet's surface in the lands near Tycoon Castle. Resting with his chocobo Boko in the woods, the startled adventurer Bartz decides to investigate the meteor crash, where he comes across a young woman named Lenna under attack by goblins. He rescues her and they soon discover an old man in the wreckage unable to remember anything except his name: Galuf. Lenna explains that she is on her way to the Wind Shrine, where her father has gone to discover why the wind has suddenly ceased. Galuf, suddenly realizing that he needs to go there without knowing why, accompanies her. Bartz continues on his way, but is unable to get far before Boko forces him to return and rescue them from more goblins. The three then decide to travel together to the Wind Shrine. However, the path to Tule Village is blocked by the meteor's wreckage, leaving water as the only route. With the help of the pirate captain Faris, the group makes its way to the Wind Shrine, only to discover a missing King Tycoon and the shattered Wind Crystal. The shards, as well as the world's other three crystals, react to their presence. An image of King Tycoon appears and explains to the four of them that they are charged as the chosen warriors that must protect the Crystals to prevent an ancient evil from being revived and devastating their world.
They find that the four elemental crystals on the planet, the crystals of Wind, Earth, Fire, and Water, are actually the seal binding the warlock Exdeath, who was once bent on destroying their world. Each crystal is, unfortunately, being exploited for its powers, and this, accompanied with their pending destruction, is causing them stress that will eventually make the world uninhabitable. Bartz and his companions attempt to save each of the remaining crystals — the Crystal of Water at the tower of Walse, the Crystal of Fire at Karnak, and the Crystal of Earth at Gohn — but ultimately fail. As they attempt to save the last Crystal they meet Krile, Galuf's granddaughter, who helps restore Galuf's memory completely. He remembers that he is actually from a distant world, and with the help of the engineers Cid and Mid, whom they met at Karnak and the Library of Ancients, the group resolves to travel to Galuf's world, Exdeath's true target. He is already wreaking havoc when they arrive, battling armies of men on the Big Bridge, including Galuf. Bartz, Lenna, and Faris are ultimately captured. Galuf flies in on his wind drake to save them, defeating Gilgamesh, one of Exdeath's lieutenants, in the process. However, the warriors are blown to a distant continent when a barrier is activated during their escape. Thanks to Krile, her wind drake, and a group of moogles, they make their way to Bal Castle, a place in which Galuf is king.
During their journey to find Dragon Grass to heal their wind drake, the party meets Kelger, Galuf's companion and one of the four Warriors of Dawn, who reveals to Bartz that his father had a past of being one of the Warriors. Galuf and the others also seek help from Ghido, a sage who originally predicted the destruction of the Crystals on Bartz's world, but narrowly escape the island he inhabits before Exdeath causes it to sink. The warriors immediately join up with one of Galuf's companions, Xezat, who is leading a fleet against Exdeath. They infiltrate one of the towers powering the barrier around Exdeath's castle, but Xezat is forced to sacrifice his life in order to help them accomplish it. Making their way back to Ghido's sunken island, they meet the turtle sage, who explains Exdeath's origin as the mage Enuo, and the significance of the Moore Forest in which Exdeath was born. Upon their arrival at the forest, Exdeath begins to burn it down. They eventually reach the Guardian Tree and dispel the seals within it. However, Exdeath, having claimed the power of the Crystals, immobilizes them. Krile arrives on her wind drake to temporarily stop Exdeath, but the warlock imprisons her in a ring of fire. Galuf summons the strength to break his crystal, saves his granddaughter, and fights Exdeath until he collapses. Exdeath retreats, leaving Galuf to die of his wounds, despite the party's efforts to save him. As the four of them leave the Guardian Tree, Galuf's spirit imparts upon Krile all of his abilities.
The party enters Exdeath's castle and defeats him, but the three remaining crystals shatter and the worlds are reunited. They learn that he seeks the power of the Void, which had been sealed in the dimensional interval called the Rift and kept sealed by dividing the worlds. Exdeath has acquired this power, and he uses it across the newly combined world, consuming entire towns and kingdoms. After having recombined an ancient book entailing the seals on the Tablets that hold the twelve legendary weapons within Kuza Castle, used against Enuo one millennium ago, Ghido proposes that the party collect them as quickly as possible.
Bartz and others seek out the Tablets and break the seals on the weapons, slaying several monsters from the Rift that Exdeath sends after them. The party eventually enters the Rift, where Exdeath has acquired the power of the Void and shows his true form - that of a tree, one that had been possessed by an evil spirit. With help from the original Four Warriors of Dawn and King Tycoon, the party survives the Void and begins a final battle with Exdeath. As he loses strength, Exdeath is overwhelmed by the Void and becomes Neo Exdeath, intent on destroying everything, even himself. The party destroys him, and, using the power of the Crystal shards within themselves, vanquish the Void and return form to the shattered Crystals of the original world.
The ending varies based on how many people are still alive at Neo Exdeath's defeat. Cid receives a letter from one member of the party talking about what will happen in the future. If everyone survives, Krile will visit the Guardian Tree to mourn for her grandfather, until Bartz, Lenna, and Faris arrive to comfort her and remind her of her duty to protect the Crystals. If anyone in the group dies during the battle, they will be unable to return home. The survivor or survivors will visit the Guardian Tree, and find that those who were lost in the battle have returned to life.
Final Fantasy V plays largely like the previous four titles of the Final Fantasy series. The party can traverse the world map either by foot, a chocobo named Boko, a wind drake, or airship depending on the position of the story. Random encounters with enemies occur in most areas except towns. Party members can defeat enemies for experience points and eventual level upgrades, and defeating tougher enemies usually results in higher upgrades. Towns usually have an inn, which party members can rest at to have all of their HP and MP restored, a few shops selling items, weapons, armor, or magic spells respectively, and non-playable characters whom the party can talk to for information. Like in previous titles, the menu screen allows the player to equip, heal, and change each character's selected job outside of battle.
The main feature of Final Fantasy V's gameplay is the Job System, originally present in a different form in Final Fantasy III. This system allows for all characters to gain special abilities and potentially master up to 22 unique jobs. Each character begins with a default Bare or Freelancer class, and as they travel to new Crystal locations, they acquire a new job with each elemental crystal shard. A separate form of experience entitled Ability Points (ABP) allows for the advancement of characters' job levels as they continue to earn experience points. As job levels increase while fighting, new skills become available for that character to use in a newly introduced streamlined method of multi-classing, allowing each character to learn job-specific abilities and carry one or two over when changing their job. Final Fantasy V introduced some job classes, notably Blue Mage.
The Active Time Battle (ATB) system returns from Final Fantasy IV, in which time flows continuously for both the player and enemies during combat. In Final Fantasy V, the player can see which playable character's turn is next in battle, in the form of a gauge, which fills each turn at a speed according to a character's Agility statistic. This allows the player to visually anticipate which character's turn is next. When the selected character's turn arises, the player can execute one of several commands, such as attacking the enemy with an equipped weapon, using a special ability or item, changing the character's row position, or having the entire party retreat.
Final Fantasy V is the first game in the series to contain timed events, in which certain tasks must be completed within a time limit that depletes both in and out of battle. In addition, two "super bosses" are present near the game's finale, namely Omega and Shinryu (Dragon Lord), both of which can rapidly wipe out the party, regardless of their stats, and special tactics are required to defeat them.
- Main article: List of characters in Final Fantasy V
There are five playable characters, chosen by the crystals and collectively referred to as the Warriors of Light.
- Bartz Klauser - A wanderer who is the son of Dorgann, one of the Dawn Warriors that sealed Exdeath thirty years ago.
- Lenna Charlotte Tycoon - A princess of the kingdom of Tycoon.
- Galuf Halm Baldesion - One of the Dawn Warriors. He has amnesia until he reunites with his granddaughter Krile. He is the king of Bal.
- Faris Scherwiz - A pirate captain. Her real name is "Sarisa" and she is the lost princess of Tycoon, and Lenna's older sister. She was found and raised by pirates after she was lost at sea.
- Krile Mayer Baldesion - Galuf's granddaughter. She replaces him in the party when Galuf sacrifices himself to protect his friends and Krile from Exdeath.
- Exdeath - The main antagonist of the game. He was sealed by the Dawn Warriors thirty years before the game, but his seal was broken. He seeks to merge the worlds back together so that he can destroy everything in the Void.
- Gilgamesh - Exdeath's "right-hand man" who is used as comic relief, and considers Bartz his rival.
- Alexander Highwind Tycoon - The king of Tycoon, and Lenna and Faris's father.
- Cid Previa - A genius inventor from Karnak.
- Mid Previa - Cid's grandson.
- Ghido - An ancient sage turtle.
- Main article: List of locations in Final Fantasy V
The game has three different worlds. Bartz, Faris, and Lenna hail from the first world (referred to as "Bartz's world" at one point in the game), while Galuf, Krile, and Exdeath hail from the second world (referred to as "Krile's world" at one point in the game). The third world is the world as it originally was, before it was split in two to seal the power of the Void.
- Castle Tycoon
- Desert of Shifting Sands
- Gohn Meteorite
- Island Shrine - Inaccessible until the worlds merge.
- Istory Falls - Inaccessible until the worlds merge.
- Karnak Castle
- Karnak Meteorite
- Library of the Ancients
- Lix - Bartz's hometown.
- North Mountain
- Pirates' Hideout
- Pyramid of Moore - Inaccessible until the worlds merge.
- Ronka Ruins
- Ship Graveyard
- Tycoon Meteorite
- Walse Meteorite
- Walse Tower
- Big Bridge
- Barrier Tower
- Castle Exdeath
- Castle of Bal
- Castle Surgate
- Fork Tower - Inaccessible until the worlds merge.
- Ghido's Cave
- Gil Cave
- Great Forest of Moore
- Great Sea Trench - Inaccessible until the worlds merge.
- Moogle Village
- Phoenix Tower - Inaccessible until the worlds merge.
- Sealed Castle
- Underground Waterway
The merged world consists of locations from the other two worlds, although many are inaccessible. A few previously inaccessible locations can now be accessed. A couple of new locations do exist, however.
Final Fantasy V was directed by series creator Hironobu Sakaguchi, and was the last main series title that he directed. The character, image, and title logo designs were done by Yoshitaka Amano, while the actual character sprites were designed by Kazuko Shibuya. The monsters were designed by Tetsuya Nomura, whose first major Final Fantasy-related involvement is with Final Fantasy V. The writing of the scenario text was a collaborative effort between Hironobu Sakaguchi and Yoshinori Kitase. Sakaguchi conceived the plot and was in charge of it, while Kitase tried to include more humor to lighten up the relatively serious story.
The Job System was designed by Hiroyuki Ito, who worked on the game as a battle planner alongside Akihiko Matsui. Tetsuya Nomura had a planning book in which he drafted some ideas for jobs that would be in Final Fantasy V. Two of the jobs that he had in mind were a "ninja with a dog" and a "gambler who fought with dice and cards." While these two jobs were not implemented in Final Fantasy V, the concepts were reused for two characters in the following game, Final Fantasy VI, Shadow and his dog Interceptor and Setzer Gabbiani respectively.
Mode 7 effects were used in the airship sequences, which moving in the airship would cause the planet to rotate on its axis. In total, Square employed a team of 45 people to create the game, and 16 Mbits of space were used to accommodate the sprites, animations, and detailed background.
In the May 1993 issue of GamePro, it is said that the Japanese authorities had asked Square not to release the game during a school day because schoolchildren would skip class to wait in line for the game.
The official English translation of Final Fantasy V began shortly after the release of the Japanese Super Famicom version. The game was to be titled Final Fantasy III and was slated for a release in late 1994, but the project fell through. The title Final Fantasy III was given to the original Super Nintendo release of the following game, Final Fantasy VI, instead.
In a second attempt to localize Final Fantasy V, Square announced that because of Final Fantasy V's differing tone and much higher difficulty from the rest of the series, they would release it in North America as a standalone game with a yet-to-be-determined title rather than as part of the Final Fantasy series, but this would also be quickly abandoned.
In a 1994 interview with Super Play Magazine, Ted Woolsey mentioned a third attempt at localizing Final Fantasy V. He said that the game was planned for a western release in 1995 (the year after Final Fantasy VI had released) under the name Final Fantasy Extreme. In a 2007 interview on the Player One Podcast, Ted Woolsey stated that he had almost finished translating the text of Final Fantasy V, but the localization was scrapped in favor of creating a new title aimed at western markets, Final Fantasy Mystic Quest. He stated that he believed that the reasons for the cancellation were that the game was too complicated and not "mainstream" enough.
In 1997, video game studio Top Dog Software was hired by Square to port the original Super Famicom game to Microsoft Windows for a North American release. Although much of the game has been completed, it was ultimately communication problems between the Top Dog and Square's Japanese and American branches led to the project's demise.
Final Fantasy V became infamous for being canceled several times, angering fans of the Final Fantasy series. This added to the reason for others creating a fan translation for the game during the mid-1990s. In 1998, the fan translation project for Final Fantasy V was completed, and is cited as being the first RPG to receive a complete fan translation.
- Main article: List of Final Fantasy V staff
- Director — Hironobu Sakaguchi
- Image Design — Yoshitaka Amano
- Music Composer — Nobuo Uematsu
- Field Plan — Yoshinori Kitase and Ikuya Dobashi
- Battle Plan — Hiroyuki Itou and Akihiko Matsui
- Field Program — Ken Narita
- Battle Program — Kiyoshi Yoshii and Katsuhisa Higuchi
- Field Graphics — Tetsuya Takahashi and Hideo Minaba
- Object Graphics — Kasuko Shibuya and Hiromi Ito
- Battle Graphics — Masanori Hoshino, Tetsuya Nomura, Hiroshi Takai and Hirokatsu Sasaki
- Menu Program — Shinichi Tanaka
- Sound Program — Minoru Akao
- Visual Program — Keizo Kokubo
- Map Design — Kaori Tanaka, Yukiko Sasaki and Hidetoshi Kezuka
- Sound Effects — Kenji Ito, Yasunori Mitsuda and Yoshihito Maekawa
- Test Assistants — Akiyoshi Ohta, Nobuyuki Ikeda and Mami Kawai
- Executive Producer — Tetsuo Mizuno and Hitoshi Takemura
- Executive Producers — Hironobu Sakaguchi and Shinji Hashimoto
- Director — Katsuyoshi Kawahara
- Supervisor — Kazuhiko Aoki and Ken Narita
- Sound Supervisor — Minoru Akao
- Producer — Yusuke Hirata
- Publicity — Toshiyuki Inoue
- Porting — Tose Co. Ltd
- Quality Managers — Hiromi Masuda, Rei Komatsu and Yuko Yamamoto
- North American/European release:
- Localization Director — Kazuyoshi Tashiro
- Programmer — Yoshinori Uenishi
- Localisation Assistants — Mai Morofushi and Tomoko Sekii
- "Final Fantasy: Kitase's Inside Story from 1UP.com" (Wayback Machine, archive.is)
- "How Final Fantasy V Was A Turning Point In Tetsuya Nomura’s Career". Siliconera. Published March 13, 2014.
- Nintendo Power issue #56, page 66.
- Electronic Gaming Monthly issue 59 (June 1994), page 14.
- Legends of Localization: Interview: Ted Woolsey (Super Play Magazine, Sep. 1994) (published 24 May 2019; retrieved 24 May 2020)
- Transcript of Ted Woolsey interview - Episode Discussions - Player One Podcast (published 16 February 2007; retrieved 24 May 2020)
- "Final Fantasy V On Windows 95 (Interview). WarMECH's Domain (Wayback Machine).
- "Final Fantasy V on Romhacking.net.
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