Parent's Guide: Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII - Age rating, mature content and difficulty

Parents Guide Lightning Returns Final Fantasy XIII Age rating mature content and difficulty
11th April, 2014 By Kate Appleby
Game Info // Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII
Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII Boxart
Publisher: Square Enix
Developer: Square Enix
Players: 1
Subtitles: Full
Available On: PS3
Genre: Role Playing Game (Real Time Battles)
Everybody Plays Ability Level
Reading Required
Content Rating
Violence and Gore: Moderate
Bad Language: Mild
Sexual Content: None
Parent's Guide

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII is a role playing game, and the third and final entry in the Final Fantasy XIII trilogy, which follows the story of titular character, the red haired Lightning, who is tasked with saving souls in a world on the brink of apocalypse. Along the way, Lightning must defeat various monsters and complete quests in order to get stronger, develop her skillset, earn new items/abilities and save as much of humanity as possible before the impending end of the world - and she's got 13 days to pull it off.

Lightning Returns is a strictly single player game, which takes place in a very dark, brooding world devoid of hope. Monsters roam the streets and the people live in perpetual fear despite having been immortal for the past 500 years. With a reworked battle system, this is a game with a focus on "real time" (more button mashing) battles, with timing of your button presses playing a more crucial role than strategy and planning - especially when it comes to blocking foes attacks.

When you're not fending off countless monsters, however, Lightning can concentrate on her proper job - saving the world, and its somewhat useless citizens. Giving you a number of quests to complete, you'll have to gather up their stuff, go to battle with some monsters, and tie up any loose ends the people may have, in order to "save" their souls.

However, it's worth bearing in mind that this can actually be quite unforgiving. With a strict time-limit of 13 in-game days (with one in game hour being equivalent to one real life minute), you have a pretty tough schedule to work to, especially as you'll often find yourself being chucked back to a home base at the end of each day, even if you were mid-quest. With further time-related barriers getting in your way (doors that only open after a certain amount of in-game time has passed, etc), it can be quite tricky to know where you're meant to be going next, and why. It's worth mentioning here that the in-game time only passes when you're actually playing the game, too - there's no need to turn your console on at 2 in the morning to complete a certain quest.

Other than the time system, the only real obstacle is the general lack of any decent explanation. While the game features plenty of tutorials, they're all usually rather wordy (and as they aren't voiced), yet they don't actually do that good a job of explaining how the game works. While experienced role playing veterans will be at home here, newer players may need a few pointers to get them going in the right direction.

Mature Content

Battles against both monsters and people feature blood spattering across the player's screen, but on-screen characters themselves don't seem to suffer any visible physical injuries other than staggering or collapsing. A strong reading ability is absolutely necessary, with countless complex written tutorial lessons thrust at the player from the very beginning, with a lack of prompts otherwise as to how to play the game and what to do next. A reasonable level of maturity is recommended as per the main character's often skimpy, revealing clothing (however, there is no direct nudity) and infrequent, mildly foul mouth (with characters using words such as "ass" and "b**tard")

Age Ratings

We Say
Violence and Gore:
Bad Language:
Sexual Content:
Moderate Mature Content

Format Reviewed: Playstation 3

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