Final Fantasy Adventure

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Final Fantasy Adventure
Final Fantasy Adventure box art.jpg
Developer Square
Publisher Square
Sunsoft (Game Boy re-release)
Platform(s) Game Boy, Softbank 3G, i-Mode, EZweb
Release date Game Boy:
Japan June 28, 1991
USA November 1991[1]
Europe 1993
USA April 1998[2]
Softbank 3G:
Japan August 16, 2006[3]
i-Mode:
Japan November 6, 2006[4]
EZweb:
Japan February 5, 2007[5]
Genre Action role-playing
Rating(s) N/A
Mode(s) Single player
Media
Game Boy:
Media GB icon.png Game Pak
Input
Game Boy:

Final Fantasy Adventure, titled Mystic Quest in Europe, is a spin-off title of the Final Fantasy franchise and the first title of the Mana franchise. It was originally released for the Game Boy in 1991 in Japan and North America and in Europe in 1993.

The story follows a protagonist hero and a young heroine as they attempt to thwart the Dark Lord of Glaive and his sorcerer assistant Julius Vandole from destroying the Tree of Mana and dooming their world. The game was met with generally positive reviews, noting its strong story but faulting its shaky dialogue in the English version.

Final Fantasy Adventure is the only Mana title to have a direct relation to the Final Fantasy franchise. Since the release of Secret of Mana, the Mana series has disconnected from the main Final Fantasy franchise. In 2003, Final Fantasy Adventure received a Game Boy Advance remake, titled Sword of Mana, which removes Final Fantasy elements in favor of mechanics from other Mana installments. In 2006, Final Fantasy Adventure was reissued for Japanese mobile phones on the Softbank 3G and i-Mode services and then for the EZweb service in February 2007. These versions reinstate the Final Fantasy elements while having graphics on par with Sword of Mana. In 2016, the game received a 3D remake titled Adventures of Mana, which was released for iOS, Android, and PlayStation Vita. Like the mobile version, Adventures of Mana also has the Final Fantasy-related elements intact.

Story[edit]

The Hero fighting the first boss, Jackal, at the start of the Game Boy version

The world is threatened by a Dark Lord who is on a quest for the power of Mana which will, once obtained, allow him to rule supreme over the land. At his side is a mysterious wizard named Julius Vandole. Sumo, a gladiator whose parents were killed by the Dark Lord, is imprisoned and forced to fight daily for the Dark Lord's personal entertainment. One day, Sumo escapes and by chance overhears the Dark Lord and Julius in their plans to seize the power of Mana. When they discover his escape, they chase him over a waterfall to what they think it is his death.

Having survived the fall, Sumo saves a mysterious young woman from monsters. She encourages him to help her find the magical objects needed to defeat the Dark Lord in his quest for the Tree of Mana. They first journey to the nearby town of Topple to gather information.

One of the last Gemma Knights, Bogard, is now living as a hermit in the mountains. Bogard tells the two to seek out Cibba in Wendel. The pair's journey to Wendel takes them through a swamp and to a mysterious house called Ketts. They spend the night there, but Fuji is captured by the master of the house, Mr. Lee. Sumo must find a magic mirror inside the Cave of Marsh, with the help of a Red Mage. With the mirror, he defeats the Ketts' doorman, enters the basement of the house, rescues Fuji and defeats Mr. Lee who turns out to be a vampire.

In Wendel, Cibba shows Fuji that she is descended from the keepers of the Tree of Mana, which the Gemma Knights protected. But then Dark Lord's forces attack Wendel. The Red Mage offers to take Fuji to safety, but he reveals himself to be Julius and rides away with her in his airship.

With the help of the dwarves, Sumo makes it through the Gaia Cave, meets up with Bogard and boards Julius' airship. They try to rescue Fuji, but Julius catches Sumo outside her cell window. He gets Fuji's pendant before Julius knocks him off the ship and down to the ground below.

Sumo lands in Menos, home to another former Dark Lord slave, Amanda. She steals the pendant and takes it to Jadd hoping she can barter it for her imprisoned brother Lester. Instead, Jadd's ruler Davias turns Lester into a parrot and forces Amanda to hunt for his mother, a Medusa whose tears can restore Lester. Sumo helps Amanda hunt down the Medusa. They are unable to get any tears after defeating Medusa, but Amanda turns into a Medusa from the battle, forcing him to kill her and take her tears. Once Lester is returned to normal, he helps Sumo avenge Amanda by defeating Davias. With his last breath, Davias says he gave the pendant to Julius' pet bird, Garuda.

Lester's music clears away the poison gas outside Jadd, opening the path back up the mountains and to Dark Lord's castle, where Sumo rescues Fuji and battles Dark Lord for the pendant. After defeating Dark Lord, it is revealed Julius has the real pendant. He admits that he is the last descendant from the old Vandole Empire, and he mesmerizes Fuji into chanting a spell that causes the Mana Falls to flow upward. Sumo falls off the mountain while Julius and Fuji ride up the waterfall.

Sumo is rescued by a chocobo in the Crystal Desert, which takes him to Ish. Bogard has been here since he fell from the airship. The chocobo's legs broke from carrying him, but the town veterinarian, Dr. Bowow, replaces them with mechanical legs, allowing it to walk on water. Bogard tells Sumo to find Cibba, who has gone to the mountain city of Lorim. Lorim has been frozen by the ice fiend Kary, freezing all the townspeople and trapping Cibba in his room. He travels to the Cave of the Snowfields and defeats Kary to break the spell and free everyone.

Cibba says him that he must find the legendary sword Excalibur. In the floatrocks region to the northeast, Sumo finds a cave that takes him to an island in the southwest (though he first must get past the water fiend Kraken). In the island cave, the fire fiend Iflyte has what appears to be the legendary sword, but it is all rusty.

After beating Iflyte and getting the Rusty Sword. Cibba tells him to raise the Dime Tower in the Crystal Desert. Dr. Bowow directs him to the Cave of Ruins, where he must defeat the earth fiend Lich for the Nuke spell. The spell helps open another cave near the desert shore. At the very bottom of the cave, an altar causes the Dime Tower to rise when Sumo holds the Rusty Sword.

Inside the tower is a robot named Marcie, who helps him reach the top of the tower. At the very top, they must defeat Garuda, but the tower begins to fall after the battle. Marcie throws him from the tower to safety, going down with the tower. Sumo is now back at Dark Lord's castle and takes the waterfall up to the Temple of Mana.

At the end of the Temple of Mana is the Mana Forest, where the spirit of Fuji's mother turns the Rusty Sword into Excalibur. At the top of the mountain in the forest is the Tree of Mana, but Julius has succeeded in tapping into the tree's power. Julius first splits himself into three images and then transforms into two different monsters before Sumo can finally defeat him for good. Defeating Julius causes the Tree of Mana to die. Fuji sacrifices herself to become the Tree of Mana and preserve the world. Sumo then becomes her Gemma Knight and guardian.

Gameplay[edit]

The Hero talking to his Chocobo in the mobile version

The gameplay is similar to the Nintendo Entertainment System title The Legend of Zelda: the world is viewed from a top-down camera angle and is comprised of single screens that take up the entire viewing area. Saving is possible at any point in the game. As is standard in RPGs, the player must interact with individuals within towns to gather information and buy or sell items and equipment.

The hero progresses through a number of different regions, with a different goal in each region. The beginning area is a grassland. There is also a swamp, a rocky coast, a forest, a crystal field, and a mountainous region. The hero is allowed to progress from area to area either by obtaining a key that opens the way or by finding the weapon that will allow him to destroy whatever is blocking the path.

Enemies can be battled in the fields and dungeons to gain experience, GP, or randomly dropped items. Within dungeon areas a number of puzzles may be required to be solved in order for the player to advance. The player starts with a sword and eventually gains a whip, an axe, a spear, and a morning star mace. Each of these weapons can be used to destroy certain features of the environment, e.g. the axe can cut down trees and open up new paths for the hero.

The main character possesses several statistics, including hit points, power, and stamina, which can all increase upon gaining an experience level. Magic spells, which expend the character's MP, can be used to heal oneself or damage enemies. These spells can only be found in certain locations or obtained from other characters at specific plot intervals. In addition the protagonist has a power gauge that affects his attack strength – the higher the gauge, the stronger his attack will be. The speed at which it fills is directly affected by the character's will level. The gauge will slowly fill up over time but once the main character attacks the gauge is emptied. When the gauge is completely filled up and the main character attacks with a weapon he will perform a special attack. This system is used in many other later Mana titles.

Characters[edit]

Main article: List of Final Fantasy Adventure characters

The story follows a hero named Sumo as he tries to save a young woman named Fuji from the sorcerer Julius Vandole and the Dark Lord of Glaive. The hero is joined during certain sections of the game by secondary characters who provide essential assistance however the player cannot control any of the secondary characters.

The main antagonist of the story, Julius Vandole, the last survivor of the Vandole Empire, seeks to obtain the power of the Tree of Mana and restore the Vandole Empire to its former glory.

Music[edit]

The Seiken Densetsu Original Sound Version was released in Japan alongside the game. Most of the tracks were composed by Kenji Itō, while track 16, "Chocobo Tanjou (Chocobo's Birth)", is credited to noted Squaresoft composer Nobuo Uematsu. Seiken Densetsu: Omoi wa Shirabe ni Nosete (Let Thoughts Ride On Knowledge), a set of arranged tracks was also released the same year. Both albums were compiled into Seiken Densetsu: Sound Collections, originally released in 1995.

Development[edit]

Square Co., Ltd. trademarked the title Seiken Densetsu: The Emergence of Excalibur in 1987, intending to use it for a game project led by Kazuhiko Aoki for the Famicom Disk System. According to early advertisements, the game would consist of an unprecedented five floppy disks, making it one of the largest titles developed for the Famicom up until that point. Although Square solicited pre-orders for the game, Kaoru Moriyama, a former Square employee, affirmed that management canceled the ambitious project before it advanced beyond the early planning stages, possibly due to the company's close proximity to bankruptcy.

In October 1987, customers who had placed orders were sent a letter informing them of the cancellation and had their purchases refunded. The letter also suggested to consider placing an order on another upcoming Square role-playing game in a similar vein: Final Fantasy.

Four years later, in 1991, Squaresoft developed a Game Boy game under the working title Gemma Knights, and then revived the name they had trademarked back in 1987 and released the game as Seiken Densetsu: Final Fantasy Gaiden, fusing the concepts of both games together. It was later released in Europe as Mystic Quest and Final Fantasy Adventure in North America.

In 1998, Sunsoft obtained the license for the game and re-released it along with the Final Fantasy Legend series.

Revealed during Square Enix's E3 2006 press conference, the game received an additional port for mobile phones in Japan. The gameplay of the port is said to be more like the original version of the game, but featuring updated graphics and sound, as well as an improved World Map and other minor changes.

Gallery[edit]

For this subject's image gallery, see Gallery:Final Fantasy Adventure.

External links[edit]

References[edit]

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