So with this in mind I always wonder, when ranking the games in the series why does this game get so little love considering what it stands for?
This is answered after playing the game for a while. It is boring, repetitive, lacks any character development, but the biggest achilles heel is the lack of story. The story is as basic as possible, and feels like it was written by first grader. And as most rpgs make there bread and butter on story in this day and age, especially highly touted games like FF7, FF1 just looks really hagard and sloppy. Basically, we gamers have been feeding out of gold and platnium wares for so long, we just can't go back to the brass and silver.
So think to yourself now, whats a FF game without a story, you guessed it leveling up and then leveling up some more. With nothing to motivate you, this routine quickly becomes tired. In addition, the games is sparse on sidequests, although on a positive note FF does feature the first appearance of the beloved optional boss in the form of death machine/war mech.
Although, to end on a positive note, the graphics have been revamped quite a bit. Comparing this to the NES version is like comparing heaven to hell, and in general FF1 Origins version can holds its own with its 2d counterparts. And this is the first introduction to jobs, you can pick your classes.
If you like RPGs/FF series then of course this game is a must buy; however, I would not recommend to this game to somebody just dabbling their feet into the world of RPGs.
FF2 is a hogpodge, with a near fatal flaw, however in the end it comes out as quite a charming game, and what I would perhaps call the first sembalance of a FF game.
First off, let me start with the flaw of this game, and what perhaps trips up people the most, the leveling system. Oh wait, it doesnt exist, exp, never heard of it. The leveling system of FF2 is like communism, eh, sounds good in theory, but not in practice. Basically, the goal was that you would gain stats as you would in reality, as you progress using spells upgrades your spells, get severly wounded and surviving nets you hp and so on. Problem is that this generally leaves you underdeveloped for the most part, and ends up screwing you in others. For example, lets say I am in a boss battle and win, but loss 3/4 of my hp. I get my hp doubled, ha, sounds good, oh crap im still in the dungeon and I wont see that Hp till i heal. So you can imagine the dilemma. And then of course comes the double edge sword to the developers, sometimes gamers are just a little smarter than you are. Thats right manipulating stats is as simple as attacking yourself, squandering your magic supply, or the old "attack, confirm, cancel" trick. Essentially, you can manipulate your stats in such a way that the entire game is a cakewalk, or dont and face hell on earth. (I will just note, for anyone using the former, dont stay too long on the first floor of the last dungeon; an enemy called a death rider will wipe you out no matter how strong your group is if they appear in fours)
That aside, FF2 is the first game that has a real story, granted its rather simple, but this is the first game that you play and really feel like its a FF game. The characters are fairly likeable, and there is a plethora of them as well. This is the first game, where your able to use more than just the standard four characters you begin with. And perhaps the thing that makes this game interesting the most is the rather dark tone of this game, that comes out of nowhere. I wont say what happens, otherwise it would ruin parts of the story, but if you enjoy a more serious or darker story you will enjoy this game.
Another thing that I personally like in this game, is that although you have actual named characters, you are basically free to customize them how you want. Anyone, can be good at magic, and anyone can be good at fighting. You can fight with multiple weapons and do more damage at the cost of defense, or fight with the classical sword and shield style. In addition, characters are not preconditioned to work with one weapon or armour, they can basically use anything at any point. As you use a weapon type, you develop that skill, so it is recommended that you stick with one type of weapon per character.
Overall, despite its flaws, Origins is a must buy for anyone who likes rpgs, but if this is your first foray into the field I suggest looking elsewhere unless you have the patience of a saint.
Collectability: 5-7/10 (depending on the release)