Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age is out now on PC

Final Fantasy XII

Patience is a virtue, but sometimes, you need to be positively saintly to hold out for a PC release. It’s been a very long time since Final Fantasy XII‘s original debut on the Playstation 2, but the underrated (at the time) JRPG has finally found a new home on our humble, flexible platform. You can now buy Final Fantasy XII on PC, upgraded with a slew of enhancements from the recent console remaster of the game, and for 20% off the RRP thanks to a generous launch discount.

Originally dismissed by some at launch as effectively being a ‘single-player MMO’, I feel Final Fantasy XII is a game that people are only beginning to properly understand now. Granted, it has its flaws – most of which seem to stem from a rewrite of the story late in development – but the hands-off tactical combat that runs on basic AI scripts assembled by yourself is strangely compelling stuff, especially when paired with the fast-forward feature, allowing you to practically skip past grinding and travel times as you optimize your party.

In addition to the usual suite of PC-centric graphics options, the Zodiac Age edition of the game includes all the tweaking and tuning done for the Japanese second release of the game (including a whole new character class system), as well as a bunch more upgrades (mostly visual) from the remastering process. While some object to the visual ‘noisiness’ introduced by the new textures, I give them my stamp of approval simply because they made Vaan’s abs significantly less terrifying-looking.

We should hopefully have a full Wot I Think piece on the game in the near future, although my personal take is that it’s probably worth it if you don’t mind a slightly more experimental, MMO-ish RPG framework, paired with a story that clearly doesn’t revolve around the ostensible protagonist. Oh, and if you have a decent amount of free time. That always helps.

You can buy Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age now via Steam and Humble. It’ll set you back £28/€40/$40 right now, which includes the hefty 20% launch discount offered until February 8th.

19 Comments

  1. Jalan says:

    This is nice and all but the one Ivalice game I want to see released on PC is still Final Fantasy Tactics. The way things are going though, they’ll run out of main series titles to re-release and eventually HAVE to turn to the others, so I remain hopeful.

    • Dominic Tarason says:

      Not quite as good as a full native port, but I will say that PSP emulation is effectively beyond perfect these days. PPSSPP is a lovely piece of software.

      I recommend this mod, especially:
      link to ffhacktics.com
      A total rebalance/rework. Makes it all feel fresh again, rejigs most battles, but keeps difficulty roughly on par with the original release, and fixes some bugs like the slowdown on the PSP version.

      • Jokerme says:

        I second this. PPSSPP is a lot better option than any quick port job can be.

      • TheOx129 says:

        Is the PSP version the one with the pseudo-Shakespearean dialogue used in its localization? On the one hand, it’d be nice to get a last act that’s actually comprehensible (I recall the original FFT’s localization falling apart completely at that point), but the screenshots I’ve seen make the new dialogue seem pretty stilted. Unfortunately, it seems like a lot of folks seem to miss the fact that one of the bigger reasons Shakespeare is so lauded is that he had a fantastic ear for dialogue and knew that people of different social groups often speak differently.

        • SaintAn says:

          Yes, they speak in old English. That’s one of the reasons I love it so much. They also have incredible cinematics.
          Here’s the opening for example: link to youtu.be

          My only problem with it is they censor a line of dialogue because they’re afraid Christians will get angry since they can’t tell reality from fiction.

          I think it was this one:

          “All such tales of gods and their miracles are false. Those who would lead prefer that history suit their needs, and rewrite it to see that it does. And why shouldn’t they? The fault lies not with them. The reeking masses yearn for gods and miracles. It is their opiate, and they consume it greedily. The people do not endeavor towards greatness, but rather mire themselves in their petty strifes – shackles on the feet of man. Their leaders give them no more than that for which they clamor. It is history’s oldest and most oft-repeated tale. Do men exploit this weakness to dominate their fellows? Mayhap they do. But they succeed only because the people are eager to know such dominion. Gods are only illusions born of man’s fear. It is they who see this charade for what it is and join in the pageantry who are to blame.”

  2. arienette says:

    FF13 was about £12 when it came to PC, so it seems like quite a big ask for a much older game. Not that it isn’t worth it, just a curious pricing decision.

    • Deano2099 says:

      It makes a bit of sense if you know the background. 13 was a port of a PS3 game that was about 3 years old and mostly just moved across and given higher resolution options.

      This one is actually a port of the PS4 version of FF12, that came out about six months ago. With the upgraded graphics, reorchestrated soundtrack and gameplay tweaks.

      • Someoldguy says:

        But the PS4 Zodiac Age Limited Edition version of it is available for under £15

  3. Babbage says:

    I find it strange that this game is being remembered as ‘underrated’ when most gaming websites at the time rated it as 9/10 or 10/10. I remember it being a well received final fantasy at the time.

    • Jalan says:

      Strange indeed. I remember the original PS2 release getting significantly positive/glowing reviews, with some reviewers even going as far as mentioning to their readers that if they’d previously been put off by past titles in the series then they might find much to like in XII.

    • blankname says:

      Underrated by fans. It frequently shows up on peoples’ least favorite Final Fantasy game lists.

    • MisterFurious says:

      Most gaming websites give every game a 9/10 or a 10/10.

  4. Kalle says:

    I remember really enjoying the battle system and I wouldn’t mind going back. I just wish there was a way to skip the usual 10 hours of prologue/tutorials that Final Fantasy throws at you before you get to the actual meat of the game.

    • ReluctantlyHuman says:

      I don’t know how it works with FMV and the like, but there is a button to speed up the game by x2 and x4 I think.

  5. DantronLesotho says:

    Even though I think the end of the game’s story kind of falls flat, the gameplay and design of this game is so fantastic. Getting your team to operate like a well-oiled machine in tough battles feels so satisfying, and some of the toughest bosses in the game seem near unbeatable until you get your team in tip-top shape.

    It also has some of the best voice acting of any game, JRPG or otherwise.

  6. criskywalker says:

    It seems a bit expensive for a ten-year old game. I’ll play FF VII which I have, but have never played first.

    Then I’ll probably buy FF X/X-2 which is cheaper and many people consider better. Then I’ll buy this on sale. And after that I’ll get FF XV on sale. Jackpot!

    No running out of Final Fantasy on the PC for a long time to come. Now if only we could have Persona on the PC someday…

    • Jalan says:

      X was the full stop point for me as far as the main series was concerned. I was into the story, I even (sort of) liked the voice work (and other things) but some of the changes to how things previously worked in prior games just proved to frustrate me beyond measure (collecting the ultimate weapons in stages/phases being chief among them).

      Before that, IX (which everyone but myself seemed/seems to adore even to this day) just put me on the edge of boredom by the time I made it to the end of the first disc, so much so that I just never went back and continued on once I did the last save confirm. More recently I resolved to go back and give it another attempt, having a good span of years to mellow and adapt in terms of overall patience and what I enjoy, so I purchased the remaster on Steam and dove back in. While I can’t say both the passage of time and the efforts of the remaster have completely swept away the feeling of boredom I get from it, I do find myself warming to it a bit but sadly not to the degree that I was completely chained to seeing some of its predecessors (IV, VI and VIII, to be specific) through to the end.

  7. Torabayashi says:

    For those rankled by the high price, the current Green Man Gaming sale stacks with the launch discount, allowing you to knock the price down another 20% to a bit over $30.

    After putting in a few hours, the port feels solid. No performance issues, fast load times, and seamless switching between gamepad and mouse and keys. The speedup button is pretty handy, I mostly use it as a “sprint” toggle to cross the map quickly. (Cutscenes still play at normal speed, so you won’t accidentally be listening to chipmunks.)

  8. VeggyZ says:

    I bought this game back on PS2 and I hated it. I started playing the remaster and I love it.

    I think I was partially put off by the gameplay change the first time – and the stupid license grid, where everyone could do everything – never been a fan of that. I REALLY love being forced to pick a class now, it makes so much more sense this way… it adds the need to have a little gameplan if you don’t intend to use quickenings for every tough fight.

    Exploration is a lot more fun with the texture upgrade too. They’re far from perfect, but it’s definitely a big upgrade compared to the original pudding textures.