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  • Yep, Theatrhythm got me all nostalgic. So nostalgic, in fact, that I had to select a

  • Final Fantasy from that collection youve doubtless seen pictured on the twits or the

  • bookface or what have you, and get my classic JRPGing on. Only I did nothing of the sort.

  • Instead, I grabbed Final Fantasy XII Revenant Wings, a curveball so weird it leaves the

  • PS2 original entirely, pulls a hard left, and ends up as a DS real-time strategy game.

  • That’s right, it swung so hard back through the admittedly Tactics-influenced source material

  • that it became a unit-grouping, target-designating, tech-researching, reinforcement-building RTS.

  • When we last left our heroes... well, I don’t want to spoil XII itself for you so let’s

  • just say everything’s hunky dory and Vaan and Penelo are trying their hand at being

  • super awesome sky pirates... just like Fran and Balthier over there. While investigating

  • (read: stealing) the Glabados Cache, they accidentally trigger a landslide, what swallows

  • up Vaan’s brand-new airship and really puts a damper on his plans for sky piracy. So Balthier

  • and Fran go off and continue to be awesome while Mr. Who Let Me Be A Protagonist Anyway

  • slinks back to the Rabanastre slums, until he hears tell of a massive, ancient, abandoned

  • airship that docked itself nearby. Being the most interesting thing to happen in milliseconds,

  • Vaan grabs a couple nearby accomplices and sets to the task of investigating (again read:

  • stealing) the derelict. And all this is done through the use of point-and-click RTS controls,

  • which actually feel quite comfortable in the hand. The primary resource throughout the

  • game is summoning portals, which can be turned to your side and used to produce henchmen

  • to serve under and fight alongside your up-to-five lead characters. These summoned creatures

  • are separated into tiers, with tier 1 being the cheapest peons, tier 2 being your Tonberry-level

  • hitters, and tier 3 being your familiar Final Fantasy summons.

  • It seems a strange, strange concept, but there’s enough RPG in this RTS to make it comfortable

  • to fans of the series, while RTS fans will find the game fairly challenging (if a bit

  • rudimentary). The tech trees (read: the progression of pacts you buy to obtain new espers to summon)

  • are rather shallow, though the Flying-Ranged-Melee balance of power means that youve got several

  • options in each of the four elements (as well as neutral and healing units). There’s a

  • healthy game here, especially near the end where youre getting five and six Grand

  • Malboros thrown at you at regular intervals. But youll keep pressing on, trying to unravel

  • the fate of this mysterious floating continent, and whether or not Balthier has beaten you

  • to the good spoils. Because, let’s face it, Balthier is the Gary Oak of Final Fantasy.

  • Just check the sign welcoming you to Nalbina. Do it.

Yep, Theatrhythm got me all nostalgic. So nostalgic, in fact, that I had to select a

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