I could agree to a certain extend, but then again who decides what the core elements are? Remember, FF was early on criticised for leaving it's roots. Also the later games are, after all, sequels to their predecessors. The experience from FF1 brought FF2 and so on. By this standard, FF1 may as well be the best. Imagine FF1 developed for the first time today: Give it some plot polish and production quality and voila! I think FF2 would be pretty different from FF1. If you polish them enough. No, I consider each game a part of that time. Even if you do it like this, you have to bring a great deal of imagination to the table, which tends to be biased. Your favs are your favs. I agree FF13 falls short in many ways, but I don't think we need those lenses to see it.
Who decides? Nobody. If I ask you what the core elements of a novel is, is that something somebody can redefine as they please at this point in time? Is it subjective? In a way, but at the same time, not at all it. Core elements by definition refers to the larger aspects that define the concept in question, which in this case is FF.
Nobody is saying the core elements of FF "should" be what they where back in the days - People are saying those core elements are better than the ones they use now. I happen to agree with that.
Your point is nitpicking on your part, and IMO, disingenuous when you consider the general nature of every FF game from 1 to 9(in part 10).
All these games, while making minor changes to the magic and battle system and slowly adding content, where in terms of the general formula, more or less exactly the same.
Sepparate battle and exploration screen, random encounters, world-map, full control of several party memember during battle,
and a "town/dungeon/world-map" exploration pattern broken up by minigame-like gameplay aspects, is basically a summary of the entire FF formula up to from 1-9.
Only with Tactics and 10 did they actually start to deviate from this.
If you consider this, FF1 and FF2 will not be much different no matter how much polish you give them. The only difference between these games lie in amount of content, battle tweaks and story.
Calling early FF games majorly different is as meaningless as saying Modern Warfare 1 and 2 are very different.
That's also where the biggest difference between the new and the old ones lie - While the old ones are sepparated by tweaks and amount of content, the new ones are sepparated from the old by simply removing large parts of the old gameplay elements, and content, and pushing more focus on presentation instead.
6 and 7 too. The steps just gets bigger for each entry. FF have always re-invented itself. It's the nature of FF.
People like to say this, but that isn't really true. The first time FF really reinvented itself is with the release of Tactics.
Before that, all they did was tweak the same old formula. People only blow this out of proportions because most people seemed to find it so amazing and original to have a series where each game was story- and setting-wise completely irrelevant to the next.
If some sh*tty aspects like sh*tty minigames are cut out, and not replaced by something else, I personally don't consider it a bad thing. A game should be judged on what it is, and/or what it strives to be, not what it never intended to be. Try to imagine what the developers want the gamers to experience.
That's fine, but and rpg is an rpg. FF13 has cut out of basically everything except for the battle-system and the presentation of the story. No matter how you twist or turn it, that is a step backwards in terms of production regardless of what type of art we're talking about.
And we're judging it on what it is - A Final Fantasy game, and rpg, a story-telling device and a piece of art, which is released in the wake of tons of other similar pieces. Trying to judge a game completely devoid of context isn't only probably impossible, but not a good thing because it would ruin any sense of standard, and hence any basis for judging something to begin with.
FF13, lacks large amounts of gameplay and content compared to earlier titles. That's a fact. Some might find those lacks to be a pluss. Most people don't. This is easily demonstrated. Maybe SE wants to produce interactive movies, with little to no gameplay. Maybe that's what they want us to experience. Unfortunately, I'm not willing to pay for that, or "play" it.
And to try to argue that such a piece is better, or a step in a good direction from a perspective where you take into acount things like genre, background, and what games are to begin with, just doesn't float.
I dunno, but I think 13 had several sequels in mind. Didn't the lead FF squeeny guy say it would continue for 10 years?
FF10 and FF7 were certainly not developed with a sequel in mind.
Maybe it was - maybe it wasn't. I doubt it was when it was on the drawboard - which is what makes the entire difference.
And, what's your point? Appart from the battle system, FF10-2 was a steaming pile of garbage IMO, and the same applies to every spin-off related to FF7. This just reiterates my point, that you shouldn't create spin-off, sequals or prequels to stories that weren't designed with that idea to begin with.
I have to disagree with you there. As you may have noticed FFVII has worked on a similar principal and as far as i am concerned it was pretty epic. I enjoyed pretty much almost everything of DoC and of Crisis Core. (Not to mention the movies which were awesome too ^^ )
As you're entitled to. I enjoyed the 90s show about Sinbad the sailor, I still know that it was, in terms of quality, completely horrible.
People need to divorce the emotion "like", from the concept we call "quality". The two are not necessarily inter-related.
DoC was a mediocre/poor 3rd person shooter(compare it to any other high-ranking game in the genre), Crisis Core bastardized the original story of FF7, and AC was, except for the animation quality(which still completely breaks with the original vision of the art), as completely "B" in every sense of the term.
I though AC and CC was great fun too though. Same goes for FF13 - But seriously, taking into account the times for which each FF game was released, and the progression between each game, I have a very hard time taking seriously anyone who thinks FF13 is a step forward in the series in any way at all, except for in its presentation.