This is it, Marty, this is the big one. The year 2017 marks the 30th anniversary of Final Fantasy, a series that certainly needs no introduction. Conveniently, it also coincides with the 20th anniversary of the founding of RPGFan (back when we were still LunarNET), but that's a story for another day...
Sometime during the summer months, we started talking about doing a feature to mark the anniversary of the biggest franchise in our beloved genre. The conversation and plans continued to grow and become more grand, until we had the seeds in place for what you're reading now: A huge collection of articles, short stories, and podcasts by as many RPGFan editors who wanted to contribute. We had little in the way of guidelines, and encouraged people to come up with their own articles. The result was a mix of articles that range from evaluation of certain Final Fantasy games to deeply personal tales and everything inbetween.
This collaborative nature is also how we arrived at the name. Despite the mixed success of Final Fantasy XIII's Fabula Nova Crystallis universe, it felt like the perfect name for our feature, as we needed a big umbrella term to put sometimes disperate articles and ideas under. And in a series with key and recurring terms like crystarium, L'Cie, magitek, chocobos, some guy named Cid, and countless other things that sound like utter nonsense to a non-gamer, how could we do better than Anniversaris?
The feature grew big enough that it was quickly apparent that we had to space out each part of it, so you can properly digest each portion, and nothing gets lost in the ether. The result is that we will be adding to this feature twice a week from now until the beginning of January 2018. I've perhaps never been as proud of our staff's ability to come together on a collaborative feature as I am on this one: It's by far the biggest feature in our history, and I can't wait for you to discover it over the coming weeks.
If you're just discovering this feature and want to move through it chronologically, below is the archived log of exactly which part was posted when.
Say what you want about Baby's First Final Fantasy, the soundtrack is packed with killer tunes. We also wrap up Fabula Nova Anniversaris definitively with artwork of one of Final Fantasy's most revered knights.
The perfect complement to Un-Tradition, one of our final Memoria entries covers one of the odder games to don the Final Fantasy moniker over the years. Especially since it isn't even an actual Final Fantasy game.
Our final analytic article of Fabula Nova Anniversaris, Robert Fenner delivers a critical hit of a piece, discussing why we will never see another Final Fantasy exactly like that one we loved years ago. And why that's not only important, but by design.
We covered all the mainline games already, but we couldn't let an opportunity to talk about Final Fantasy Tactics go by unrecognized.
One could fill a book with the amount of spin-off titles, merchandise, and music that exists outside of the main Final Fantasy games. We don't have a printing press, but still wanted to celebrate some of the series' key side stories.
And now the final curtain! In this finale to the series, Keegan covers the remaining single-player Final Fantasy games: FFX, XII, XIII, and XV.
Memoria is near the end, but there's still life in it! This time we look at the risen-from-the-dead-to-be-a-success Final Fantasy XIV and newest entry in the series which features a boy band.
Final Fantasy finally makes the jump to the seventh generation of consoles, but not without a hiccup or two. Final Fantasy XIII is not a fan favorite, but Peter Triezenberg certainly thinks it desrves more, and shares his fond memories here.
A sadly-small number of the current staff spent much time in Final Fantasy's first MMORPG, but thankfully, Derek is one of them, and shares his memories of Vana'diel. Oh, and there's stuff about Final Fantasy XII too.
Summons are an absolute must in a Final Fantasy game, but not every Eidolon makes the cut in every single game. Alana's here to give you an overview of some of her favourites, and some of the most overlooked creatures in the series.
Final Fantasy XV introduced its fair share of firsts for the series, and Nick discusses one of the most well-done and surprising of them all in this article.
Appearing in almost every mainline game, Cid is a Final Fantasy staple. Both Mikes and Alana talk about their favourite Cids, and discuss the impact they have in their own game.
We know: There's really nothing we could say about Tidus and Yuna's fight against Sin that pays proper tribute to Final Fantasy X compared to the efforts of some, but we do our best.
Distant Worlds is currently touring the world to celebrate the series' anniversary, but the concert tour also celebrates its 10th birthday. Alana went to see the the concert at London's very own Royal Albert Hall, and tears were shed.
In this entry, Keegan dives into the PSone trio of Final Fantasy titles, with looks at Final Fantasy VII, VIII, and IX.
One of these is often considered the best of the PSone era in gamers' hearts, and one has a salary system.
If there was ever a proper time for Retro Encounter to do a quick one-episode hit of the original Final Fantasy, this was the time. Join Robert Fenner and Michael Sollosi for a look at Final Fantasy's origin (but not Final Fantasy Origins).
Four RPGFan editors from all walks of Eorzean life come together to talk about our experiences in Final Fantasy XIV, where the game has been, and where it's going.
A dark knight, a bard and a geomancer walk into a bar and say "Hey, you're from that hugely popular Final Fantasy series too, right?" Keegan takes a look back at some of the most memorable additions to the series' job system.
It stands to reason Square Enix themselves would want to celebrate Final Fantasy as well, and part of their celebrations are a month-long art exhibit featuring artwork from all fifteen titles, and more.
We pulled former RPGFan Music Managing Editor Stephen Meyerink out of retirement for
one last job his insights on two things he knows better than many others: Ivalice, and localization.
Several RPGFan editors get together for this companion piece to our ongoing Memoria entries, to share even more insight to their experiences. Part 2 of 2.
Keegan's back to tell you more about his mammoth undertaking! In part II of this huge feature, Keegan treads the waters of the SNES-era, perhaps the series' most consistent period.
You'll never think of celery the same way again.
There may be no Final Fantasy nearly as divisive as Final Fantasy XIII — though Final Fantasy XV comes close at times — so Peter looks at the title's development history, that proves to be as convoluted as its plot.
It's easy to write off something like a TV show spin-off of a game as a cash grab, but Caitlin discusses why there's actually much more to Final Fantasy XIV: Dad of Light than one may expect.
Several RPGFan editors get together for this companion piece to our ongoing Memoria entries, to share even more insight to their experiences. Part 1 of 2.
Today we wrap up the 8-bit games with Final Fantasy III, and dive into the SNES era with the adventures of Cecil, Kain, and co.
What a time we live in, where there is not one, but two ongoing tours of musical performances for Final Fantasy. Hilary shares her experience at the "newer" tour, A New World.
Keegan has taken on the admirable task of completing every Final Fantasy game before this feature ends. He kicks things off with the NES trilogy, proving that age has not made these games any easier...
Sure, we all have our favorite protagonists, but Final Fantasy has brought us so many memorable villains, we have to highlight some of them.
If you ever doubted how far your RPGFan editors will go to provide you with both insight and entertainment, this episode is what you need. Mike, Keegan, and Peter watched three Final Fantasy films and discuss the
spirits tales within.
Alana discusses the concept of "purpose" and how several members of Final Fantasy IX's cast manages to find theirs.
Memoria is not the only part of our Final Fantasy 30th Anniversary celebrations, but it will serve as a consistent backbone throughout the coming weeks. We start things off today with Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy II.
Surprise! This episode was actually the precursor to our big feature, as the first of four consecutive Final Fantasy-themed episodes of Retro Encounter. Alana, Stephanie, and Keegan get together to talk about the beloved Final Fantasy IX.