Final Fantasy XIV

Stranger of Paradise – Final Fantasy Origin in the test: a curiosum

Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin does not believe us that there are the NiOH creators behind it.

It sounded so good! As a past year, the rumor came up, Team Ninja, the studio behind the fantastic Nioh games, make a kind of beginner Souls-Like with “Final Fantasy” license, we have painted a bit really cool in the head. Then Square Enix Stranger of Paradise announced: Final Fantasy Origin on the E3… and any enthusiasm was there. The first trailer presented a game that looked ugly, offering dialogues and intermediate sequences that would go through as a definition of “crop”, and even the fights – actually the great strength of team Ninja – did not make any good impression. Now the title has appeared and… Well, if so, it surprises that the finished product confirms that first imprint? After all, a year has not even passed since the announcement. What should change big in time? No, Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin has unfortunately become a rivet. You could have done something really great from the basic idea.

In the batch cool,…

Stranger of Paradise is not just any action role-playing game, which one overturned the “Final Fantasy” brand. It is a reinterpretation of the very first part of the legendary JRPG series. As shown in 1987 in Japan’s original, it’s about a fantasy world in which four crystals play an important role. Also, it’s about the prophecy of the four knights of light that the evil will conquer in the form of chaos.

However, a lot is weird. The four knights of the light are not four at the beginning, but only a trio and their crystals are totally dark. Something is right there. And then the main character is still Jack Garland, so wears the same last name as the antagonist of Final Fantasy 1! Yes, Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin is a prequel to the old game. What actually is a cool idea, this is nuclear that seemingly nobody knew in the developer team, how to tell and stages this story well.

The intermediate sequences are terrible. The camera does not stop even then if there is no reason for her to move. The animations of the characters are made of gray past and the dialogues only… because a character tells his tragic story about how he wanted to victim himself to give the world peace, and what makes Jack? He just says: “Bullshit!”, Bring a kind of smartphone from the pocket, makes rock music and leaves the room. And then the MUCKE only runs for a few seconds before the game breaks you abruptly.

Stranger of Paradise Final Fantasy Origin | The Definitive Review

… in practice a gray

The complete beginning of Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin is so strangely bad that we sat several times with open mouth in front of the screen because we could not believe what happens there. Since we first see a pretty chic advanced sequence, in which Garland (ie the rogue from Final Fantasy 1) kidnapped a princess. Then suddenly we find ourselves in a boss fight with Tiamat, a monster, the longtime “Final Fantasy” fans certainly know in a futuristic-looking environment – and without any context. After the scene, suddenly an intro begins, in which Jack is running over a wide meadow and in the background plays “My Way” by Frank Sinatra, but that blows out when the refrain begins. Ne, no time for the beautiful music, now the tutorial for the basic control has to start, which takes place on said meadow and very remembered NiOH: her activates orbs, whereupies always a text window follows with explanations and then a opponent spawns the theory puts into practice.

After the tutorial, Jack is trying through a portal and leaves at once before the walls of the capital of the Kingdom of Cornelia. Suddenly there are two types behind him, who apparently want something from Jack. The three look at, say no word first. Then, one gets out of his crystal, says that the stones feel each other, the other two grasp to their copies. You find out within three sets that they all have the mission to kill chaos, and from now on they are the best friends. “What to hell?!”, Was our logical reaction when we experienced the whole for the first time.

And it does not stop there yet: just following two textboards, which tell about it, that the trio actually wanted to go to the king, but was not faced and then hunted for weeks of monsters in the country to prove themselves and yet an audience obtain. 1. There is obviously a level that team Ninja has cut out for some reason. 2. The textboards (and the subsequent intermediate sequence on a ship) are still totally unnecessary because they do not contribute to history. These explanations that the heroes ultimately create in the throne hall of the king would not have been necessary – especially since it was already apparent to developers in advance, to create contexts for the individual scenes.

much known

Ok, for story fans is Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin before nothing, unless they are out to experience a trash firm. But honestly, NiOH games do not prove great narrative art. Can the title convince at least playfully? So just like Nioh? After all, he is obviously based on the same basic framework. The structure is the same as: Instead of a coherent game world, there are individual levels that you control over a world map. In addition to the main missions, you can play side quests that return to you in already well-known areas. The whole menus have about the same construction as in NiOH, many animations from those games has recycled team ninja. The Loot system is also identical. So there is a lot of prey and weapons as well as armor always have several bonuses that increase the many different values ​​of your characters.

Yes, characters. Plural. Although you only control Jack, but always have two Ki colleagues on your side, unless you play in the online coal. At the beginning are the Jed and Ash, the two instant friends mentioned above, later join even more group members. This is cool, especially in conjunction with the job system (for that we still come), but also a problem: Already in NiOH, the many Loot can sometimes nerves because you are constantly busy to go to the inventory and items to compare. Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin offers this again to a greater extent, because you can just equip your teammates. Although there is the possibility to automatically create the items considered as the best possible items with a keystroke, stupidly concerns all the figures. So there is no way to manually determine Jack’s equipment while doing the work only with his companions of the software.

No job shortage

The job system, actually the greatest strength of the game, contributes again to its part that the Loot progression is rather nervous instead of motivating. It’s like that: you will release over 20 classes in the gameplay. Jack starts as a normal sword fighter, but that does not have to stay over all the time if you do not want that. You can also just go to the magician, fist fighter, Ninja Mönch or what you want for your desire. Stranger of Paradise allows you to always switch to the push of a button between two jobs. And these two you can exchange memory points against others. The problem: If your new equipment finds, you check for Jack two sets, just one per job, so you cost the process again more time. Less loose would definitely have been more here.

Each class in Stranger of Paradise is released separately, making your job points that you invest in new active skills and passive bonuses. Every job has its own, quite clear talent tree, so the complexity for each individual is limited – right, otherwise the system would probably be overbound. We also like that the classes are beautifully different. For each there is a separate weapon category with special attacks. Cool is also that you yourself with what keyboard shortcuts you triggers which special attacks – even if it can be annoying, with each newly unlocked skill to change your own configuration again. In the case of your Ki colleagues you do not have to set yourself which skills you should use, it can not do it. But we find that completely ok. To determine what job you should have, we are completely sufficient as strategic decisions.

Who wants mana, must break will

All the skills consume mana points (MP). Although you have always a fixed stock, but can at least temporarily increase by their opponents until their will and then take the soul to. And no, this is not a paraphrase for mere slaughter of monsters. Each character, even Jack, has a will-bar. Who hit conceded, decreases its will. If the bar of an adversary completely empty, you can perform on it a soul crusher. With a simple push of a button you done it, thereby regaining mana and increases your maximum mana. But the latter is just not a permanent upgrade. Decreases your stock back below the maximum, whom you have from home, the bonus is g1. Also, this is a cool system because it encourages you to use skills that dish out a high will damage. Those who focus only on reducing the life energy of the enemies, rare Soulbreaker can use and then gets sometimes in the predicament that you have no more mana for special attacks.

If Jack will bar the way, is used up, you can check out for a short time do not move, similar to the Soul Borne games and other Souls-likes if you do not have more stamina. But will is in Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin not be equated with endurance. It costs you nothing to perform normal attacks or dodge. Only when you yourself just plugging damage, employing the soul sign, the bar decreases. With the latter makes her enemy attacks and how the Soulbreaker their regenerated while mana and increases its maximum. but you can also normal with your weapon or your shield block. However, your will recharges more slowly when you attack or dodge and when blocking the beam stops. The whole is dominated by a nice twist within the Souls-like genre, where otherwise the classic endurance system.

No impact

The systems of Stranger of Paradise are therefore mostly designed well. Why it playfully is then not a hit? Well, very simple: to play it, just does not have much fun. Jack controls Although very similar to the protagonists of the NIOH series, but the fights feel much worse, because the hit feedback unconvinced. It does not really strikes us as our blows would meet the enemy physically. It just lacks that certain “Impact” that a Elden ring and also has NIOH.

In addition, the matter comes with the difficulty. Stranger of Paradise would be like a Souls-like, but actually it is not. Although opponents respawn when you snap to save points and you also have a limited number of healing potions, which always fills up the catches, but you will not lose any experience points when you die. Furthermore, the struggles against common opponents not this tension that we know of Souls-likes and the originals of From Software have. They look more like normal action role-playing games in which you schnetzelt you quickly through groups of enemies – except that her on the two higher of the three levels of difficulty inserting more damage than in other titles of the kind.

Yes, you read that right: Stranger of Paradise offers several difficulty levels and the lowest named “Story” makes it really a fairly simple action RPG. He even offers again an additional “without danger” option, which makes the experience even more relaxing. So the game is also suitable for absolute beginners and casual players. However, we do not know why anyone Stranger of Paradise: should buy Final Fantasy Origin to make it play out in “Story” mode, since neither the story are still the staging or the feel of a good level.

The famous difficulty tips

Who wants to be, however, a bit challenged and therefore plays on the medium difficulty ( “Action”), will be annoyed at the half-baked balance. Which makes itself directly in the first level noticeable. While the standard enemies are not big challenge there, we have dozens of attempts needed for the first boss – and between which sometimes turned off the game in frustration. Unlike Margit, the first right main story boss in Elden ring, but we saw the error is not with us, but with the game. So it wants the one that we use special attacks to break the will of the enemy, but we are hardly large enough time window where we can even perform such an attack without even while damage to cash. We were about to lower the level of difficulty, but that would spontaneously anyway does not work because it requires a restart of the mission was necessary.

And if we did not want one, then re-playing that level – or any job in Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin. The environments are all optically without any highlights, very linear structured and without any exploratory stimuli, although you always stumbles over treasure crates. In many cases, even the problem exists that every course of a level looks the same and we had to look after a fight again, from which direction we actually come and where it goes on. Yes, the levels in NiOH 1 and 2 do not have the high level of fromSoftware worlds, but they look neat and it’s fun to explore them. In Stranger of Paradise you just want to go through quickly.

Which year do we have?

Where we look at the topic: What please went to Team Ninja, that Stranger of Paradise is so absurd ugly? No, even Nioh 2 is not a beauty, but looks more like a game from the late PS3 era. But this time, the Japanese have made a journey through time, which continued in the past. Stranger of Paradise is full of washed textures, the character models are outdated and flicker edges everywhere. A small service tip: If your Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin, as we play on the PS5, changes by default in the graphics mode. In that, the game also runs absolutely fluid, is still no beauty, but at least the resolution is not so low that you feel that all the picture flees at any time.

What you can hear in turn instead of seeing, at least partially well suited. We have nothing to enter against the orchestral soundtrack. He is so epic as it is used by Final Fantasy – nothing special, maybe even a little generic, but it sounds good. This is the English language output (German setting does not exist) quite moderate. Granted, the poorly written dialogues would also focus on the best speakers to deliver a good performance.


Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin is so strangely oblique, like his first trailer. So you can not accuse the creators to have promised too much at that time. But it is so incredibly strange, like a game that Fantal Fantasy carries in the name and was financed by Square Enix, clearly inferior than the NiOH parts. Stranger of Paradise makes everything worse: the fights, the presentation, the graphic, the leveldesign and just the Loot progression. While we can not deny that the story and their staging are so bad that they could be referred to as Trash gold, but if the gameplay is not convinced, the entertainment value remains on the way. Then just look at the curious moments on YouTube so that you do not have to play Stranger of Paradise myself. Nothing benefits that the job system and the mechanics are well done for will and mana, if the fighting does not have fun.

Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin


Great job system

Mana and will system well thought out

Epic soundtrack

Entertaining Trash factor,…


… because of lousy narrative and presentation

Bad leveldesign

Weak combat system

Technically grossly outdated

Too much equipment management

2/5 stars

Now Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin buy!