What's so good about… FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES Remastered Edition?

From the fascinating world and incredible soundtrack, to the super-accessible multiplayer features, here are 10 reasons you don’t want to miss this new and improved RPG.
By Duncan Heaney

FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES is one of the most unique - and fondly remembered - games in the entire FINAL FANTASY series. Now, it’s back, enhanced and expanded with FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES Remastered Edition.

The new release takes the 2003 Gamecube original and updates it with beautiful HD visuals, online multiplayer, new voiceovers, improved audio options, and even entirely new content to play through. It’s going to get fans of the game very excited.

But those of you who missed the game the first time around might be wondering… what’s the big deal? What makes this game stand out so much from other FINAL FANTASY games?

Well allow us to shine a crystal’s light on the answer.

1. It’s a FINAL FANTASY game that’s designed to be played with others

FINAL FANTASY games typically feature parties of heroes who band together on a grand adventure. Think Cloud, Tifa, Barret and Aerith in FINAL FANTASY VII REMAKE, or Noctis and his chums in FINAL FANTASY XV. That feeling of camaraderie is amazing, but you’re still playing the game solo.

FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES is different. You’ll still be accompanied on your journey by allies, but in this game, they’re your actual, real life friends because this FINAL FANTASY game is designed from the ground up for co-operative multiplayer.

You create a character from one of four very different tribes, and join your pals as part of a caravan that travels the world in search of valuable artifacts and the mysterious substance known as Mrryh.

This world is dangerous - and every part of it forces you to work together. For example, one player needs to carry a special item called the Crystal Chalice to fend off the noxious miasma, but carrying this bulky tool makes you vulnerable to attack. You’ll have to rely on your team to keep that person safe. In other areas, you’ll encounter tough foes that can only be defeated by a precisely coordinated battle strategy.

In other words, it’s a genuinely co-operative experience - as the old saying goes: the team that works together doesn’t die a horrible, painful death due to hordes of vicious monsters or poison gas.

...well, it’s something like that.

2. …but it’s fun in single player, too

That said, if you are more of a solo adventurer, no problem – the journey is yours to take completely in single player mode.

In fact, the cooperative elements remain and are adjusted for solo play. The game has lots of features specifically for single player, including AI companions and slightly altered combat mechanics that ensure that the game remains a fun, memorable adventure however you play it.

3. The world - and its inhabitants - are fascinating to explore

FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES Remastered Edition takes place in a wonderfully intriguing setting.

It’s set in a world that’s been ravaged by a noxious gas called Miasma. These deadly fumes can kill any living thing unlucky enough to be caught in them - plus they probably smell pretty bad, too.

The cities are protected by crystal fragments, but they must be maintained with drops of Myrrh - a substance that is worryingly rare. Civilization’s only hope for survival lies with caravans of brave travelers who tour the world in search of this precious commodity.

It’s quite the setup, right? Things only get more interesting when you consider the diversity of this world. Society is made up of four very different (and playable) tribes:

  • Clavat: Skilled and reliable defenders who’ll bravely take on any foe.
  • Lilty - What these diminutive caravanners lack in stature, they more than make up for in strength.
  • Yuke: Masters of magic who conceal their faces with eye-catching armor.
  • Selkie: A fast and agile tribe that’s known for its carefree nature.

These four tribes each have their own strengths and weaknesses - they all complement each other in a fascinating way. Add in a menagerie of monsters and you have an incredibly memorable world that’s quite unlike anything else in the FINAL FANTASY series.

4. The combat system is fast, flashy and mechanically deep

One thing the world does have in common with other FINAL FANTASY games is that it’s full of creatures eager to chow down on an unsuspecting adventurer. Sooner or later, you’ll have to fight.

FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES uses an action-based battle system that combines timing, reflexes and strategy.

Everyone moves freely around in combat, and uses their attacks and spells in real time. Those spells are a particularly effective tool in the arsenal, but your character only has a fixed number of ability slots in which to assign them, so you’ll need to think about what to equip.

Some moves and spells can be charged and released at the perfect time for maximum effect. But if you’re playing with a team, you can unleash your spells at the same time as your compatriots to fuse them and increase their power. In that respect, it’s a good idea to co-ordinate your builds and attacks for maximum effectiveness in battle.

It’s a system that’s full of choice - not just what move or spell to use, but when to use it - and how to combine it with those of your party. And when create that perfect game plan for the fight - and nail the execution perfectly, it feels absolutely wonderful.

5. The Remastered Edition adds dungeons that will really test your mettle

The new version of FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES doesn’t just enhance what was already there - it adds new content into the game.

One particularly exciting addition is a range of new, super-challenging versions of dungeons. These are specifically designed to test everything you’ve learned about the game so far. Only players who have mastered the combat system, developed efficient strategies and learned to work as an effective team will have a chocobo’s chance of making it through these ultra-satisfying gauntlets unscathed.

6. There are new cosmetic options exclusive to the Remastered Edition

The Mimic feature is brand new to FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES Remastered Edition, and it allows for even more player expression that the original.

By collecting stamps and visiting Moogle Houses, or completing certain dungeons, you’ll earn special crystals (well, it is CRYSTAL CHRONICLES, right?). These let you change your character’s appearance to that of the many characters you’ll meet on your journey.

This gives you even more options on how to customize your character, and make your character stand out from your friends’!

7. Kumi Tanioka’s soundtrack is incredible

Another way FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES stands out from the mainline games in the series is its soundtrack.

Primarily composed by Kumi Tanioka, it uses the sounds of traditional instruments to create a vibe that’s almost medieval… and entirely its own. It’s extremely distinctive and memorable - listen to just a few seconds of one of the many tracks from the game, and you’ll know immediately where it comes from.

Don’t take our word for it though - you can listen to the original soundtrack now on streaming services like Spotify.

The new Remastered Edition sounds better than ever. Select tracks have been reworked, and some new tunes have even been added to the game, making what was already an audio feast even more fulfilling.

What’s more - shameless plug alert - if you want to hear the enhanced tracks that feature in the new Remastered Edition, you can pre-order the CD from the Square Enix Store:

8. It’s crossplay so anyone can play with anyone

The development team of FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES wanted to make it as straightforward as possible for players to team up with each other. That’s why they ensured that all versions support online crossplay.

The game’s available for PS4, Switch, iOS and Android devices, and whichever platform you have, you can play with the others.

For example, you could have one player on the Switch, another on PS4 and two smartphones users, and they could all form a caravan and go on an adventure together.

9. There’s a free Lite version available now

Speaking of no barriers to entry, there’s a Lite version of the game available that lets you play a substantial chunk of the game absolutely free (though please note that you’ll need the standard PlayStation Plus and Nintendo Online memberships to play those versions online).

Much more than a simple demo, it’s a hefty slice of the full game. It lets you play up through up to three dungeons in single player, or, if a friend with the full version of the game hosts you online, you can play through up to 13 dungeons. Not only that, but the progress you make is saved and can be transferred when you upgrade to the full game.

FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES Remastered Edition Lite is available to download now for PS4 and Switch. On mobile, the game is free to play as standard, with exactly the same features and functionality as the console Lite versions - you can upgrade to the full game via an in-app purchase.

10. One full game is all that’s needed for a team of four to play through 13 dungeons

If one player has the full game, they can invite up to three friends to play through the full 13 dungeons with them - even if those other players only have the Lite Edition.

All players’ progress will be saved too - so even if you haven’t got the full game, when you reconnect, you can continue where you left off. It’s another feature that highlights the team’s approach to the Remastered Edition - making it as easy and convenient as possible to get a multiplayer session going.

Do bear in mind though that if you want to continue your adventure without that player (or someone else with the full game), you’ll need to upgrade to the full version yourself.

Those were just 10 reasons we’re excited to play FINAL FANTASY CRYSTAL CHRONICLES Remastered Edition - available to download now for PS4, Switch, iOS and Android.

But what about you? What parts of the game are you most excited to experience? Share your thoughts with fellow fans and the team on social media: