If you're into the Final Fantasy role-playing game series, you can't do much better for mobile-original games than Final Fantasy Record Keeper. The free-to-play game from DeNA and Square Enix is basically a "Final Fantasy All-Stars," which characters from nearly every numbered Final Fantasy teaming up to battle against enemies and bosses from all across the series – complete with authentic sprites and music from the various games. It's seriously great!
After publishing Record Keeper's first major update in June, DeNA has just released the game's second big update. This one includes welcome character balance improvements, plus some extremely handy tweaks like enemy health bars, a "Remove all" equipment option, and more. Read on for full impressions of Final Fantasy Record Keeper's latest update!
Record Keeper features one or more characters from every numbered Final Fantasy except for the MMOs XI and XIV. Those characters are coming though! Any game with so many characters to juggle is bound to have balance issues, which this update aims to improve. The following characters have been upgraded:
Celes (Final Fantasy VI)
- Raised usable Black Magic abilities from level 2 to level 3
- Can now use level 3 Combat abilities
- Hit Points, Attack, and Degense upgraded
Cyan (Final Fantasy VI)
- Can now equip regular armor
- Increased Attack
Squall (Final Fantasy VIII)
- Raised usable Spellblade abilities from level 3 to level 4
- Can now use level 3 Celerity abilities
Snow (Final Fantasy XIII)
- Increased Attack
Vanille (Final Fantasy XIII)
- Can now use Level 3 Summon abilities (a major improvement to an already powerful character)
- Enemy Hit Points displayed
- Soul Break Mastery : Characters can now "master" unique Soul Breaks from equipment and retain them when changing equipment.
- Bring 4 Soul Breaks into battle : Characters can equip to four Soul Breaks to use during battle.
- Remove All option
- Increased Inventory : Inventory limit can now be expanded up to a maximum of 500 (this costs Mithril or premium currency)
- Character Skip Settings : Choose between two different ways to skip between characters' turns in battle
- Toggle Auto Battle Always On
The most important of these changes is the enemy HP bar display. At long last, players can tell how much health enemies and bosses have. Some bosses become more aggressive or gain new abilities at low health, and the new HP bars will allow players to strategize around that low-health behavior. Besides, it's always good to know how close you are to the finish line during long battles!
The new 'Remove All' option lets players unequip items from either their current team or everyone in their roster. This greatly speeds up the process of swapping team members and equipment around – especially with Record Keeper's regrettably slow menus.
The Soul Break tweaks are also a fairly big deal. Soul breaks are super moves that characters can use after completing enough actions during battle. Characters can now equip up to four Soul breaks instead of just one, which greatly expands their strategic choices. Just tap the "Select Soul Break" button when your character is ready and you can unleash the Soul break that best fits the current situation.
NeoGAF user Falk has discovered two extra tweaks that aren't listed in the official update notes.
The first hidden change relates to Record Material, the unlockable passive abilities that level 50+ characters can equip.
When visiting the Record Materia equipping screen, players can now tap the 'Record Materia' button at the top of the screen to view a list of all Record Materia in the game. It even displays the unlock conditions for each Record Materia. This makes collecting these important abilities much more convenient than before.
Finally, the limited-time Event dungeons now display difficulty levels on the dungeon select screen. No more jumping into an event dungeon that's way too tough for your party, thank goodness.
Final Fantasy Record Keeper is a combat-focused role-playing game with dozens of characters and countless items to collect. Although the high-level premium relic draw rate is still unfairly weighted against players, it's quite possible to fully enjoy Record Keeper even without buying premium currency.
Give the game a try, play a lot, and read the official Wiki and other resources to formulate good strategies against the super tough event bosses. Final Fantasy fans who learn the mechanics will have a blast!