The 15 Best Games Like Final Fantasy
The Final Fantasy franchise was born out of the creative mind of Hironobu Sakaguchi in 1987. Since then, there have been 12 main titles, various remakes and spinoffs, and even theatrical films based on the series.
Not only are these games incredibly popular among many gamers, but they’re also rated highly by critics worldwide. So much so that Final Fantasy VII topped numerous ‘Best Video Games of All Time lists.
What other games are similar to Final Fantasy? What makes them alike? Here are 12 picks that may help you find your new favorite game. In my humble opinion, these are the 15 best games like Final Fantasy.
The Suikoden Series
Suikoden is what happens when Fantasy JRPGs meet Chinese History. The Suikoden video game franchise was developed by Yoshitaka Murayama. The Water Margin series of famous Chinese novels—known in Japan as Suikoden—is a loose inspiration for the game series.
Each Suikoden game seems to focus on politics, corruption, revolution, magical gems called True Runes, or the 108 Stars of Destiny. The so-called 108 Stars of Destiny are the protagonists of each story. They are recruitable characters who you can band with throughout the game.
It might sound like a lot, and it really is, but somehow they all seem to have an importance in each game. This is one of those things that make Suikoden a memorable series. The truth is, it is pretty different from most JRPGs of its time, even though it is a bit like Final Fantasy in some ways.
Even though the Suikoden games’ chronology is irregular, most of the series’ episodes take place in the same world amidst ongoing and overlapping narratives. Occasionally, a number of characters appear in different parts. Nevertheless, certain exceptions that don’t seem to fit the same world and storyline, such as the Tierkreis and Tsumugareshi Hyakunen no Toki.
The Wild Arms Series
Wild Arms was Media’s first role-playing video game project. The goal of the game was to take advantage of the expanding role-playing game market in the middle of the 1990s.
Since the objective was to advertise the recently announced PlayStation platform, the game fused 3D graphics with components of classic JRPGs. Wild Arms was one of the first JRPGs to use 3D fight scenes while still maintaining typical two-dimensional characters and backdrops.
The developers created a universe that reflects the modern fantasy setting found in related games by drawing inspiration from western-themed comics like Trigun. On top of all that, the developers added references to RPG components influenced by European fantasy to attract players to their game.
This is why you see things like castles, magic, dragons, and monsters in a game where characters use guns. In the end, this is precisely what made Wild Arms have such a strong identity. This was the game you’d go for if you wanted something like Final Fantasy but different.
The Breath of Fire Series
Do you want a Fantasy World with many games that share similar aspects but are not connected to one another? Much like Final Fantasy, that’s what Breath of Fire does.
A Breath of Fire game usually comes with a fantastical saga that tells the story and adventures of Ryu. He is usually one of the few remaining members of an ancestral race with the power to transform into powerful dragons.
Although the main character of each game is always called Ryu, they are all different Ryus in different games. Each game has different stories that don’t require you to know or have played other Breath of Fire games to understand. In fact, there is a Breath of Fire game that doesn’t even happen in the same world.
Though there are few exceptions, the Breath of Fire series often gives the player control of many characters in a group. In other words, you have a party like most old JRPGs. To deal with more formidable foes, the player will have to gain experience, get money, and do quests to acquire additional skills and weapons.
Since Breath of Fire games are JRPGs, most of the battle gameplay requires the player to choose things, talents, and upgrades from menus in a turn-based model. If you like turn-based games and are into old Final Fantasy titles, I am sure you will have a blast with Breath of Fire.
Tales of Berseria
In Tales of Berseria, players will embark on a journey of self-discovery as they take control of Velvet. She is a young woman whose good behavior has been replaced by anger and hatred after a traumatic experience three years before the events of Tales of Berseria began.
Velvet will join a crew of pirates as they sail the seas and visit the many islands that make up the sacred realm of Midgard.
Mutsumi Inomata, a well-known character designer, was the one who personally designed the character Velvet. On top of that, the famous Japanese animation studio Ufotable was responsible for the animation of the game’s incredible cinematics, resulting in a truly epic and gripping story thanks to its style.
As for how this game is similar to Final Fantasy, one must remember that the Final Fantasy series has over fifteen games. The early ones were very much Japanese interpretations of medieval fantasy. On top of that, games of both series usually start with a somewhat small problem and end up with a world-threatening catastrophe that must be stopped.
Chrono Trigger is a pixelated JRPG, much like old Final Fantasy games. It has an epic story, memorable characters, and a fun combat system. The game was developed by the Dream Team of Squaresoft, including Hironobu Sakaguchi, the creator of Final Fantasy.
Chrono Trigger is one of the best JRPGs on Steam, and for a good reason. It features an excellent story, unforgettable characters, and a combat system that is strategic but feels fast-paced.
Even though the battles are turn-based, the music and animations create some sense of movement and urgency in each combat encounter. This is a seriously impressive feature for a game from the 16-bit era.
Besides all that, the game’s art style is absolutely gorgeous, making it also one of the best pixel games on Steam. Chrono Trigger is definitely worth checking out if you’re looking for a game that will keep you hooked for hours on end.
The game was originally released for the Super Nintendo in 1995 and has been re-released on several platforms since. Chrono Trigger is often considered one of the best video games of all time. If you’re a fan of Final Fantasy, there’s a really good chance you will enjoy playing Chrono Trigger.
Resonance of Fate
In a hail of gunfire, the course of the planet is altered. Resonance of Fate tells a story about emotional connections and firearms set in a world that is coming to an end.
I seriously enjoyed and appreciated the blazing gun fights while flying through the skies in this beautifully designed game that takes place in a devastated universe. The complex plot revolves around the theme of fate as the end of humanity unfolds.
Unlike anything you’ve ever encountered, the fighting system blends fast-paced gun fights and strategical choices. On top of all that, each scene is greatly enhanced due to several amazing musical compositions by Kohei Tanaka and Motoi Sakuraba.
If you’re a fan of high-tech Final Fantasy games, there is a good chance you’ll enjoy playing through Resonance of Fate. After all, this is a JRPG with a character-driven story and an odd combat system. Plus, the setting is just as unique and exciting as anything you’ll find in a Final Fantasy game. This might be a good game to scratch that FF itch.
The Kingdom Hearts Series
The Kingdom Hearts series is one of the most popular games like Final Fantasy. The story follows the adventures of Sora as he travels to different Disney worlds to defeat the Heartless. The gameplay was a bit different from most JRPGs when it first came out, with a menu-based real-time battle system.
Sora’s quest is an Epic hero’s journey about friendship and saving many worlds from the darkness. These games have been loved by gamers for years because of the art style, beloved characters, and unapologetic fan service.
Like many JRPGs, Kingdom Hearts has an incredibly convoluted story. Still, Square Enix managed to put together an enjoyable and exciting game with plenty of twists and turns that’ll keep you hooked until the end.
This game might not be everyone’s cup of tea. However, if you like Disney movies, are looking for more games like Final Fantasy, or enjoy RPGs in general, this series is worth checking out.
Dragon Quest 11: Echoes of an Elusive Age
If you’re looking for a game with turn-based combat, an engaging story, and lovable characters, then you’ll want to check out Dragon Quest 11.
This game follows the story of the Luminary, a chosen one who must save the world from destruction. Along the way, you’ll meet a cast of colorful characters and battle some goofy and tough enemies.
The turn-based combat is simple to learn but difficult to master, making it perfect for those who enjoy a challenge. Plus, the game’s beautiful graphics will transport you to another world. Dragon Quest never fails to deliver a game that feels like an old classic, even if it has modern graphics.
The story is always epic and builds up from local issues to an overwhelming evil that must be stopped. On top of that, the art style is based on Akira Toriyama’s drawings, which grants this series an unmistakable identity.
Grandia 2 is a simple yet captivating JRPG. Its story revolves around the old formula of a battle between Good and Evil. The player takes on the role of the main character Ryudo, a mercenary who accepts a job that doesn’t go as expected as the situation. Since this is a Japanese RPG, the plot will end up in a world-threatening issue at some point.
The story progression is given in a linear way, with the group of characters visiting villages and receiving quests, which usually lead to some dungeon, which directs the group of characters to another location, and so on.
Though it was released on the Dreamcast in 2000, this game still holds up today. Grandia II features beautiful graphics, an excellent soundtrack, and interesting gameplay mechanics that make it feel unique.
I risk saying that Grandia II’s combat system is one of the best, if not the best, among the JRPGs of its era. It is the perfect mix between tactical turn-based and real-time combat. It places more emphasis on technique than on straight damage output and grinding levels, which makes it different from many other JRPGs in this regard.
Lost Odyssey was created by the renowned Final Fantasy series’ developer, Hironobu Sakaguchi. This might be one of the reasons why this game feels like a classic Final Fantasy game in many ways.
In this game, you take on the role of Kaim, a man with no recollection of his past despite having lived for a thousand years. Similar to early Final Fantasy editions, Lost Odyssey uses the conventional turn-based fighting system used in most JRPGs of that era. Although you don’t explore a lot of the world at first, the player is eventually given greater freedom to travel around.
Following common tropes, towns offer areas to save the game, shops where players can buy and trade items, and inns where the party’s health can be restored. On top of that, Lost Odyssey also has random combat encounters like most games of the genre back then. It is said that the developers maintained the gameplay very traditional so they could experiment with the story.
The planet where the game is set has undergone a Magic Industrial Revolution. Throughout the game, Kaimmust deal with the sorrow caused by the return of his memories as he tries to let go of his past.
I Am Setsuna
I Am Setsuna is a Japanese role-playing game that was released in 2016. The game follows the story of Setsuna, a young woman who has been chosen to be sacrificed to a demon in order to save her village.
The game is similar to Final Fantasy in the way the story is presented and the tone of the story. However, I Am Setsuna is unique in its setting and atmosphere. I Am Setsuna is a great game for players who desire a game with similar plot elements to Final Fantasy 10.
This game is often described as a fusion of Chrono Trigger’s gameplay and Final Fantasy 10’s. This is due to how combat feels and because it has a similar storyline about sacrifice and a mysterious, world-threatening entity.
Although it was developed by Tokyo RPG Factory, this game is also distributed by Square Enix. It seems to have been made by fans of old square games since that’s the overall style and feel of I Am Setsuna.
The Legend of Dragoon
The Legend of Dragoon looks, sounds, and plays like a PS1 Final Fantasy game. However, it isn’t. It was actually referred to as the FF killer when it first came out. It wasn’t the case, but this was a decent game nonetheless.
The game’s cinematics and visuals, which are recognized as its main selling factors, were praised when The Legend of Dragoon originally came out. However, quick-time events were criticized for needing too much accuracy. It seems that Dart’s transformation was also considered underwhelming since it wasn’t way less important to the gameplay than it appeared to be at first.
This RPG was created by Japan Studio and released for the PlayStation in 1999. The game follows a squad of warriors commanded by the protagonist, Dart, as they try to prevent the end of the world in the high fantasy fictitious world known as Endiness.
By looking at this game from a distance, it is pretty easy to mistake it for Final Fantasy 7 or 8. When it comes to gameplay, The Legend of Dragoon was very close to the two mentioned titles.
Valkyrie Profile 2: Silmeria
The sequel to the Valkyrie Profile series, Valkyrie Profile 2: Silmeria, was created by tri-Ace and released by Square Enix. Japan, North America, Australia, and Europe received the PlayStation 2 version in 2006, while Europe and Japan received it in 2007. Eventually, it was released once again as a Square Enix “Ultimate Release.”
The tale, which is set hundreds of years before the events of the first game, centers on Silmeria and Alicia, two individuals who share a body. The two protagonists cooperate to avert a disaster that may spark a war between the gods and the humans. The game was praised for its similarities to the original Valkyrie Profile game and its stunning visuals.
The game’s story is divided into chapters. Unlike in its predecessor, players may take their time exploring the towns and dungeons throughout the game. The exploration of dungeons is done on a 2D side-scrolling platform.
I genuinely believe that this was one of the most innovative games of the PlayStation 2 era and by far one of the best RPGs I’ve ever played. Everything about the world of Valkyrie Profile is impressive, from the locations to the characters. If you like a good epic fantasy, I’m sure you will love Valkyrie Profile 2: Silmeria.
Square Enix has an unmistakable style, which is why all their RPGs feel the most like Final Fantasy. In the case of Octopath Traveler, it very much feels like it follows the same design philosophy of the later Final Fantasy games released on the SNES.
The name of this game is very suggestive, considering the fact it is about eight travelers. You have eight journeys to experience as you explore the vast and fantastic realm of Orsterra. In Octopath Traveler, you will have to choose from eight distinct characters to play as, each with a unique tale.
Players follow the whole adventure of each character as you explore the eight areas of the magical and hazardous land of Orsterra. Take part in the simple yet complex turn-based fighting system and overcome foes’ defenses by figuring out their weak points.
The way this game was put together is brilliant. The scenarios are 3D, but the texture is made of pixel art. This odd combination makes Octopath Traveler feel both nostalgic and high-quality at the same time. If you like JRPGs from the SNES era, especially Final Fantasy games released on that console, I’m sure you will enjoy Octopath Traveler.
The Last Remnant
The Last Remnant looks and feels like a Final Fantasy game. It is a Square Enix game that feels like an experimental project. Still, it is a very celebrated game, and it even got a PS4 Remaster that looks gorgeous.
The most innovative thing in Last Remnant is its combat system. In this game, you have many allies, but you control squads instead of individuals. Not only that, you get to choose formations and decide how characters will evolve.
All those details make a difference during more challenging combats. You will have to care about positioning and initiative during each fight. Paying attention to where each of your squads is and which enemy squad is more advantageous to attack is very important, especially during boss battles. This game is a hardcore JRPG with one of the genre’s most complex and enjoyable battle systems.
You take the role of Rush Sykes, a young man who ends in the middle of a worldwide conflict while looking for his sister. Along the way, you’ll meet dozens of characters with different motivations.
The game takes place in a fantasy world with various city-states and four distinct species. It centers on a young warrior, ruler of the proud city of Athlum, David Nassau. You get to follow their quest to put an end to the worldwide conflict.