Final Fantasy XV has been available since November, 2016 and now it has finally made the jump to PC after the initial console release. Known as Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition the game is the same in terms of the content to the recent release of the Royal Edition on consoles. With such a long wait for the title to come to PC has the wait been worth it and have Square Enix proven that they can in fact make good ports?
Let’s clear something up right away. Final Fantasy XV is a great game full of content that has a few problems here and there. The release on PC sees all the content from the season pass, along with the numerous free updates, all packaged into one single product. With that said the rest of this review won’t be a complete breakdown of each element nor the game base game, but rather the experience on PC. You can read the original review that was published for Final Fantasy XV here. Now, with that said let us continue to dive into Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition.
If you have played Final Fantasy XV on console then you know what to expect, if you are playing it for the first time on PC then you are in for a treat. Square Enix have, without a doubt, delivered the best port of any title they have ever released with Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition. Requiring a somewhat beefy machine in order to run the complete 4K experience, those with a midrange machine will still be able to enjoy the new visuals at a steady 60 FPS. Even low end machines will be able to handle the title, be it in a similar look and performance to that of the console counterparts. With a detailed set of options available to fine tune the visuals you should be able to find the ideal setup regardless of your machine.
Speaking of visuals, Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition is stunning. The new overhaul to the graphics brings the game up to the same standard as other beautiful PC titles on the market right now and with the option for 4K, it becomes even more beautiful. It is worth noting as well that the addition of features such as Nvidia Hairworks further enhance the experience making for a simply stunning title. If you are a fan of taking screenshots in games then you will have a field trip here. Again though, all the top end graphics running at 60 or 120 FPS comes at the price of needing a powerful machine but that is to be expected.
Playing on the PC is another matter. Simply put, don’t play with a keyboard and mouse, it is not fun. Thanks to Steam you can plug in nearly any controller and have a solid play experience all while sitting back. I personally went with the PlayStation 4 controller and had no problems apart from the usual issue of the jump button being the same as interacting with character, so you would now and again just jump in front of NPCs. Regardless, it feels responsive and fluid thanks to the new framerate and with the shorter loading times playing the title for long sessions feels less like a pain and more like a fun time.
One of the biggest benefits is that the DLC content, included in Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition, plays just as good as the base game now as well. With the online multiplayer mode Comrades is now actually enjoyable thanks to the huge reduction in loading times making it so much quicker to jump into the action. Each of the additional content packs that are included bring something new and exciting to the table and the visual updates and improvements to the performance ensure players, both new and old, can really play them as they were meant to be. Sadly though the content is still not part of the main game meaning you need to jump out and play them on their own to get the full experience which is the releases biggest issue.
You see, even with Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition bringing all the content together and being the best way to play the landmark RPG it is not a complete experience. Firstly, a number of DLC items are missing. Now these may only be a few small things but the Assassin’s Festival is nowhere to be found to name one, and given that Square Enix have confirmed another year of DLC episodes to expand the story, you can expect to have another ‘complete edition’ release in another year or so. This isn’t to say that Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition is bad, it is just a shame that PC players are still not able to enjoy the full Final Fantasy XV experience. This release even brought a number of end-game content to the title as well while highly enjoyable, it is still just another thing to have to add to the list.
So what do you end up with then with Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition? The end result is first and foremost the title being one of the best ports Square Enix have ever produced. PC players will be happy to know that they can really push their hardware to its limits with this title and get a true PC gaming experience. Secondly is the amount of content found within this one package, easily offering near thew 150 or 200 hour mark to really take in absolutely everything on offer in Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition. The negatives are of course that it is not a ‘complete’ experience and that for all the positives and brilliance of the title Final Fantasy XV still delivers a somewhat half-baked storyline. Of course, with such a fun combat system you can overlook the boring writing at places.
Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition is the best way to experience this huge RPG and all of its main content released to date. With stunning visuals, impressive performance and hours upon hours of content PC gamers cannot go wrong with this title being in their collection. It may have a few issues here and there that carry over from the initial release but nothing that takes away from the experience being a truly PC one.
Final Fantasy XV (Reviewed on Windows)
Excellent. Look out for this one.
Final Fantasy XV: Windows Edition is one of the best ports of a videogame to date. If you have yet to experience this landmark title then do so now.