Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time Review
Wii | DS
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time box art
System: Wii, DS Review Rating Legend
Dev: Square Enix 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: Square Enix 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Mar. 24, 2009 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1; 2-4 online 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+ 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

As you can see, this game is full of awesome features! However, as mentioned previously, it is plagued by two problems that make it often unplayable on Wii: the graphics and controls. For starters, the graphics were made for the DS. As such, Wii players will have to suffer with a dual screen presentation that is quite disconcerting. Additionally, the lowest common denominator principle was put into place in order to make the game compatible between Wii and DS. Consequently, despite the vibrant colors, this is one jaggy title, devoid of details and polish.

Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time screenshot

As bad as the graphics are, they almost seem pleasant when compared to the nearly broken Wii controls. Though the controls are directly aped from FFCC: Ring of Fates, they are appallingly implemented on the Wii. In fact, the use of the Wii Remote and Nunchuk in Echoes of Time is the worst I’ve ever seen. Using melee via the A button and laying down magic with C is awkward though passable, but trying to platform is an utter sham. That’s because the analog stick on the Nunchuk is poorly configured and thus terribly inaccurate. Also, jump commands often never register. These problems are exponentially worsened when you hop online with friends. Once you add the slight amount of lag to the mix, jumping from platform to platform becomes an absolute nightmare. Truly, I had to use my gaming partner, Amanda Kondolojy (who was using a DS, thank goodness) to get through all jumping sequences. She would have to pick up my character and proceed to jump from platform to platform just to allow us to advance. The fact that the piggyback jumping mechanic was allowed to occur tells me that the devs knew about the problem and left it in as a work around. To me, that’s inexcusable. Considering the amount of platforming to be found in the game, the game is practically ruined whilst online.

Another thing that really bugged me was the inability to efficiently quit out of multiplayer parties. If you get stuck with the wrong bunch, good luck trying to get away from them in a timely fashion – the reset button will be your best friend. And that’s another thing; why can’t I change the options within the game? There is no in-game options menu, and it is impossible to get to the title screen once you fire the game up. Again, the reset button on your Wii is the only resort. That is a terrible oversight by the devs. Also mediocre is the poor and repetitive musical effort. Again, I’m sure everything sounds fine on the DS, but it all comes off as amateurish on the Wii.

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There are a number of other features the game sports (like scratch cards, A.I. settings, status ailments, and hero chronicles), but I’ve gone on far too long already. The take away from this entire review should be to avoid this game like the plague when it comes to the Wii. I wouldn’t be surprised if this game was a ton of fun on DS, but it is a doomed effort on the handheld’s big brother.

By Jonathan Marx
CCC Editor / News Director

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
2.0
Graphics
The vibrant, cutesy visuals aren’t enough to save this title from the dual screen presentation and absolute lack of detail.
1.8
Control
Though stacking magic is slow, it works well enough. Melee combat is wonky but passable. However, platforming on the Wii is an abomination, making this title nearly unplayable during multiplayer without a little help from a DS-toting friend.
2.5
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
A standard effort from Square Enix; the repetition and unoriginality is unfortunate.
4.0

Play Value
This title has a lot of great gameplay, from fun mini-games to excellent, puzzle-filled dungeons. It’s a real shame the game is so deeply handicapped by the archaic visuals and half-broken controls. Pick this one up on DS and have a blast!

2.2
Overall Rating - Poor
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Play anytime, anywhere with anyone! Multiplayer connectivity reaches new heights in Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Echoes of Time, where players can team up or compete with friends and players around the world.
  • The intuitive control scheme introduced in Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: Ring of Fates returns, now adapted to Wii for double the action.
  • Players can switch between single and multiplayer modes within the gameworld itself, giving them two great gaming options in one integrated experience.
  • A personalized hero can be generated from a choice of the four familiar races of the series; Clavats, Lilties, Selkies or Yukes.
  • Create and customize materials, armor, and equipment for characters with tailored appearances and abilities - no two heroes will be the same.
  • A vast selection of quests provides hours of fun, even after completion of the main adventure.


  • Screenshots / Images
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