|Final Fantasy Record Keeper|
Poster art for Final Fantasy Record Keeper
Final Fantasy Record Keeper (Japanese: ファイナルファンタジーレコードキーパー Hepburn: Fainaru Fantajī Rekōdo Kīpā) is a free-to-play role-playing game developed and published by DeNA for iOS and Android. The game features characters, scenarios and battles from the mainline Final Fantasy series. It was released in Japan on September 24, 2014, and worldwide on March 26, 2015.
The player assembles a party of up to five members consisting of the main character Tyro as well as various named and generic Final Fantasy characters. With their party, the player visits various worlds from the Final Fantasy series, and progresses through the game by clearing the dungeons within "Realms", which are each based on its associated Final Fantasy game. While in a dungeon, the player may not change party members, equipment, or set abilities. Each dungeon consists of one or more locations, which have one or more Active Time Battles. Between locations, players change the Soul Breaks assigned to characters and move characters between the front and back rows.
Each location has a Stamina cost to challenge it. Used Stamina points regenerate at a rate of three minutes per point. The player's maximum Stamina starts out at 20 points, and can be increased by collecting Stamina Shards.
The battles in a location are fought consecutively, with some status effects from each battle carrying over to the next. Once all battles in a location are clear, the player is given a score for that location—"Novice", "Expert", or "Champion" (in Japanese: "Normal", "Good", or "Excellent")—based on time taken, damage received, number of player characters KO'd, and special scores for any bosses that were fought.
Damage taken, abilities used, and special move gauge all carry over from each location to the next. The player's overall performance in the dungeon is determined by the scores from each location, with higher scores required to master a dungeon. Rewards are given for both the first times that a dungeon is cleared and mastered, which can include Stamina Shards, mythril, equipment, abilities, orbs, new party members, and unlocking further worlds and dungeons. In addition, clearing a dungeon has a Gil reward given each time.
Players may revisit previously cleared dungeons at any time and clear them again, paying the associated Stamina cost each time, in order to level grind and farm items. Furthermore, mastering a dungeon unlocks a higher level version of the same dungeon known as an Elite Dungeon. Elite Dungeons have higher Stamina costs, but they yield higher level orbs and have their own separate clear and mastery rewards.
In addition to the normal realms that are always available, the game also has Events (イベント Ibento) which are only available for a limited time. Events usually reward players with characters or upgrades unavailable by other means at the time of the event, or which would require using limited resources to obtain. There is also a different "daily dungeon" for each day of the week.
While the game is free to play, there is a real money cash shop where Gems (in Japanese: Mog Coins (モグコイン mogu koin)) can be purchased. Gems may in turn be used to pay for anything that Mythril can be used for at various rates of exchange. Mythril may be used for the following:
- Resting in a realm between locations, restoring HP, status, and used abilities.
- Continuing in a realm when the party has been wiped out. This restores the party to full strength as resting does, gives them a random temporary stat bonus, and returns them to the beginning of the location to try again.
- Instantly regaining all Stamina.
- Relic Draws (装備召喚 Soubi Shoukan), a lottery that awards equipment of varying power and rarity.
- Increasing the inventory limit for equipment and the inventory limit for abilities, both of which start at 150.
Equipment and abilities
Each character has access to certain abilities and equipment, with only Tyro having access to all equipment and abilities. Equipment and abilities are grouped into families that determine if a character can use them. Examples include knives, bows, spears, and staves in the weapon families, robes, light armor, helmets, and bracers in armor families, and white mage, combat, celerity, and dragoon in the ability families. The abilities that characters can use are limited to specific rarity ceilings, whereas characters are granted access to weapons families that allow them to equip any rarity of weapon in the family.
Abilities, orbs, growth eggs, refining items, weapons, armor, and accessories are rated from one star ☆ to six stars ☆☆☆☆☆☆ (Weapons and armour can reach eight stars ☆☆☆☆☆☆☆☆ through combining and reforging). This functions as a power rating of sorts; Thunder is ☆ while the more powerful Thundaga is ☆☆☆, for example. Higher rarity items drop less frequently than lower rarity items off monsters of the same level. Equipment of higher rarity has higher stats than equipment of lower rarity, and may provide a more powerful Soul Break.
While employing the same scale, rarity behaves differently depending on the item associated with it: Abilities require orbs of the same rarity to synthesize, while growth eggs and refining items of a higher rarity bestow more XP for characters and equipment.
Each character may equip one weapon, one piece of armor, and one accessory at a time. Weapons and armor may be leveled up via a refinement process carried out by Cid. This costs gil and requires the sacrifice of another piece of equipment or an equipment refinement item. Once the item's level gauge is filled, it levels up and its stats improve. Filling the gauge requires more items at higher levels. The item's level limit is based on its rarity, with ☆ equipment having a maximum level of three and ☆☆☆☆☆ equipment having a maximum level of twenty. In addition to using up other pieces of equipment, players may also use Adamantite or Scarletite. Higher rarity equipment and materials add more to the item's leveling gauge.
Weapons and armor at their maximum levels may be upgraded twice through the "Combine Equipment" function, gaining a star and a "+" after its name. For example, a max-level Battleaxe (☆) may be upgraded to a Battleaxe+ (☆☆), which can be further upgraded to a Battleaxe++ (☆☆☆). The process costs gil and an additional copy of the item to be upgraded. Equipment can be upgraded even further through the "Reforge Equipment" function, provided it has been combined twice and is at its level cap. The equipment can be upgraded to "+++" status and gain a third extra star, provided the player possesses the right amount of Gil and a rare equipment material called Dark Matter. There are 5 star ranks of Dark Matter, and the player must have a piece that matches the equipment's original star rating. For example, with a piece of Dark Matter (☆), the Battleaxe++ (☆☆☆) from the previous example can be Reforged into a Battleaxe+++ (☆☆☆☆).
Additionally, the player can upgrade a piece of equipment (regardless of star ranking or level) with a Rosetta Stone, a rare item that can add a point to a main stat of a relic (for example, defense for armor). The number of times this can be done for a piece of equipment depends on its initial star ranking, although some ☆☆☆☆☆ equipment can be augmented more if it carries a powerful Soul Break.
Ability Synthesis and Upgrades
Each character has slots to equip up to two abilities at a time. Orbs (オーブ ōbu) dropped from monsters are used to synthesize abilities. This synthesis is carried out by Cid for a fee in gil. Abilities have a limited number of uses per dungeon, which may be increased up to four times by Cid at a cost in orbs and gil.
Nightmare Dungeons have players tasked with facing extremely high difficulty bosses in order to unlock normally unobtainable abilities. Completing Nightmare Dungeons enable certain characters to use higher level abilities. Nightmare Dungeon battles focus on specific types of play styles, with characters that specialize in that play style (Black Magic, White Magic, etc.) receiving massive stat boosts when used.
When first obtained, most characters start at level 1 and can progress to level 50. Character-specific Memory Crystals must be used on characters that have reach the maximum level to allow them to reach level 65, level 80, and level 99.
In a kingdom that survives on the harmony between magic and art, stories have been passed through history and their records keep the kingdom prosperous and peaceful. The records of these events were sealed inside paintings, but one day they began to fade away, and the kingdom fell into darkness. Dr. Mog and his assistant Tyro work to restore the paintings and their power by entering them and expelling the darkness.
- Tyro (Japanese: Deshi) is Dr. Mog's best student who is tasked with diving into magic paintings and seeing stories and memories of different worlds.
- Dr. Mog: A Moogle professor.
- Elarra (Japanese: Urara) is a mysterious girl who was trapped in the Nightmare Dungeon; she is released when all the 12 enemies are defeated, and the guide for the Magicite Dungeon stage further inside the Nightmare Dungeon.
- Cid, a frequently seen Final Fantasy character, is also present.
Many other characters from across the Final Fantasy series are also included as "guest characters". These include protagonists, guest party members, and antagonists from Final Fantasy games, as well as crossover characters from related titles.
Battles use pixel art sprites against a 2D background, with sprites being taken from the 2D games in the series, reused from Final Fantasy All the Bravest, or being created fresh in a retro style for the game. Some enemy and summon sprites are animated, unlike in most 2D games in the series. In Record Dungeons, the player has limited control to direct the party to navigate environments.
Developer DeNA proposed doing a social RPG to Square Enix that would center around the Final Fantasy series. For the international release of the game, artwork from any remakes that had been done of earlier Final Fantasy games were used, as developers felt that American audiences connected more to later Final Fantasy games than earlier ones. Cutscenes were also looked at again and polished for the same reason. To draw in American audiences, the first world entered in the game is from Final Fantasy VII, and the next two are fan favorites in Japan: Final Fantasy IV and Final Fantasy VI.
On July 15, 2014, a teaser site appeared with a timer counting time for the game's actual reveal.
The game receives regular updates to the normal dungeons, which often increases the number of available stamina shards and adds characters or memory crystals.
More frequently, the game is updated with new Events. Many Events feature dungeons based around specific games from the Final Fantasy series, allowing players to unlock newly released characters, abilities, and relics, as well as character-specific costumes that provide a cosmetic change for existing characters. Other events provide an opportunity to get more orbs, refinement materials, or experience.
In the game's second year, a feature was added to allow up to four players to work together in specific Raid Battles. The battles are generally associated with the current Events. In this mode, players can bring up to two characters each, with one assigned to the front row and the other to the back row. Gameplay proceeds similarly to single player mode, except that stamina is only used upon successful completion of the dungeon.
IGN gave the game a 6.2 rating, or "Okay", citing the games use of nostalgia for previous Final Fantasy games and fun combat and customization, but criticized its lack of character interaction and shallow story making the game hard to hold players interest. Kotaku voiced a similar sentiment, calling the game a "fun time waster", but noting the presence of the "much loathed stamina scheme" used to entice players to pay for more play time.
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- Official website