Silicon Studio/Square Enix
Originally conceived as a sequel to Final Fantasy: The 4 Heroes of Light, Bravely Default is a wonderful game in its own right. Well written and beautiful, it’s also insanely fun. The plot follows Tiz, who, after his village is destroyed, teams up with a girl called Agnès who is attempting to save the Wind Crystal, which has been consumed by darkness. Joining them on their quest are an amnesiac who calls himself Ringabel, and Edea, a young female knight. Alongside the main quest is a minigame in which you can help rebuild Tiz’s village, as well as perform other miniquests to gather classes that your characters use to learn new skills. They provide fun distractions from the twists of the primary adventure. Though the end of the game runs a bit tedious, the battle system is fun, the characters are engaging, and I found myself caring deeply for the world and its inhabitants. The music is amazing and the art is fantastic, each character well realized and every town beautifully rendered. To get the full effect, stand still for a moment every time you enter a town as it zooms out to give you a stunning view of the world you are tasked with saving.