War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius is a Polished Final Fantasy Tactics Successor for Mobile
War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius looks to be a fun, polished mobile game reminiscent of Final Fantasy Tactics.
Mobile games are typically looked down upon by hardcore gamers, and even Square Enix has had flubs in the past like Final Fantasy: All the Bravest. That being said, Final Fantasy Brave Exvius is one title that managed to stand out as something higher quality than many of its peers. Yes, it has some of the monetization models that frustrate people about mobile games, but it is also a fun turn-based strategy game that pays homage to earlier Final Fantasy games in both gameplay and style. As the Final Fantasy series has gone big and bombastic, it is nice to sometimes relax and play a game that seems more in tune with the series roots, even if it’s a mobile game. War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius does something similar with the long-ignored Final Fantasy Tactics, a series that fans have been clamoring for a return of.
While Final Fantasy Tactics fans may be disappointed that its successor is a mobile game, War of the Visions seems like it will be an engaging title with the same level of quality and polish applied to it as Final Fantasy Brave Exvius. I was able to see the game in action and learn more about it behind closed doors at E3 2019, and War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius has definitely cemented itself as my most anticipated mobile game for the foreseeable future.
War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius takes place in Lapis, the same world as Final Fantasy Brave Exvius. Like the world of Ivalice that Final Fantasy XII subtly shares with the Final Fantasy Tactics and Vagrant Story series, Square Enix is hoping to connect these mobile games and build a franchise by setting them in the same world. Unlike many mobile games, Square Enix is promising that War of the Visions will be story heavy.
“The story itself is tied to Final Fantasy Brave Exvius to a certain degree, but whereas Final Fantasy Brave Exvius was a traditional RPG story where you find a main character and follow him through his growth, [War of the Visions] is centered aroudn the theme of war where we’ll dig deep into human nature. It’s really an ensemble drama that unfolds throughout this game,” Executive Producer Kei Hirono told DualShockers.
As the title suggests, War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius takes place during a hard fought war on the continent Ardora as five factions are fighting: Leonis, Hourne, Fennes, Wezette, and Crystal Sanctum. Story heavy mobile games from major publishers tend to be rarity nowadays, but Hirono-san made it very clear that this story of war and the various themes that come with that will be a focal point of War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius.
Even though War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius is completely disconnected from the Final Fantasy Tactics series when it comes to its story, Hirono-san said it was the easiest comparison to draw when thinking about the gameplay. Having seen the game in action for myself, it is definitely a valid comparison. War of the Visions is 3D, and looks pretty decent for a mobile game at that, but it retains the strategic decision making and elevation elements make tactics games what they are.
The stage I saw in action simply had two factions fighting, though there will be levels with gimmicks in the final game. One example given to me was a scenario where players will have to activate switches in order to progress through a level and clear it out. I’m for simplistic mobile strategy games like Fire Emblem Heroes, but knowing that levels will have a bit of variety in mission makes me confident that War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius will do a good job at keeping things fresh for its players. The biggest hurdles this game will have to overcome if the Tactics community accepts the game are still being engaging in short bursts despite the story focus and not being an extreme battery drainer with its high fidelity graphics.
Of course, if you want to ignore the battles and just focus on the game’s upgrade system and Esper summons, players will be able to speed turns up or turn on auto mode. The developers also hope auto mode will make War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius more accessible to those not familiar with strategy games and allow players to get through more levels faster.
Some Final Fantasy Tactics fans may be angry that the first tactics game out of Square Enix in years is a free-to-play iOS and Android title, but from what I’ve seen in action War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius is a high quality mobile game. It is capitalizing and expanding on the interesting world of Lapis and the developers seem to be taking the story and gameplay design quite seriously. Barring any egregious monetization schemes or possible battery-draining performance at release, War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius is a mobile game I could see myself playing for a long time.
Both Japanese and global versions of the free-to-play War of the Visions: Final Fantasy Brave Exvius are currently in development for smartphones.