Over the past couple of decades or however long it's been, Final Fantasy has always seemed to be a more noticed RPG. The reason for that, would definitely be for the level of quality these games possess. Even in games like Final Fantasy IV or VI, you the story, characters, music, and graphics seemed to captivate the audience. FFVII seemed to do that more than any other FF to that time. FFVIII was another masterpiece, but not everyone loved that game's system. FFIX was a good game, but the art style did appeal to everyone. FFX took the series up a notch, showing that the visuals can keep improving as well as the story(plus, it had voice acting). Then FFXI came along, which was a masterpiece...but the level of difficulty and cost of the game turned off a lot of players...and it was the first and only FF online. Now comes FFXII. The first thing you notice off the bat is the visuals are spectacular. The art style is the best to for any of the FF's. And it's based in the FF:Tactics world(sorta), and that was always a fan favorite. The next thing people notice is that the battle system has been given an overhall. This is really a love or hate thing. I personally love the battle system, it's very deep...but a lot of people don't like it because it isn't the same turn based game everyone remembers. It plays a little like FFXI, except you aren't online. You can control everyone's battle tactics manually, or can set up Gambits, which let you customize how the characters play for you. An example: You can have someone with a gambit where if someone's health gets below 50%, they can use a certain cure spell or item. And the amount of Gambits is insane. It really let's you be prepared for every situation. The overall difficulty of the game varies. If you're just playing this game for the story and have no intention of doing the side quests, the difficulty is average...but you'll still be playing for at least 50 hours here. But if you are the kind of person that wants to do EVERYTHING the game has to offer, then this game is rather difficult. An example of this: The story bosses can be challenging, but can be easily beat if you know the tactics and level up enough. But one of the secret bosses(won't spoil) has FIFTY MILLION HP, and the fight can take up to 5 or more hours even at high levels like 85 or up. To do everything in this game, it requires a lot of dedication. I've been playing for 130 hours so far, and still haven't finished everything. But i'm getting there. The story(i'm ready to go to the last dungeon in the game), is very different from the other FF's. Instead of a fight to save the planet, or some love story...it's all about politics. I found it very refreshing and think it's very good, and I can't wait to see how it ends. As for the characters, they all have their distinct personalities, but some of the characters don't get much development. Although the more prominent characters do(Ashe and Balthier). I can say without a doubt, that I think this is the best Final Fantasy to date. With exciting visuals, a phenomenal soundtrack, content that will keep you playing for hours upon end, great characters, a different but refreshing battle system, and a level of depth that isn't seen in much RPG's now a days, I can easily recommend this game to anyone who has a love of RPG's. Now go play it!!!!!