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Like most RPGs, the Final Fantasy installments use an experience level system for character advancement, in which experience points are accumulated by killing enemies. Character classes, specific jobs that enable unique abilities for characters, are another recurring theme. Introduced in the first game, character classes have been used differently in each game. Some restrict a character to a single job to integrate it into the story, while other games feature dynamic job systems that allow the player to choose from multiple classes and switch throughout the game. Though used heavily in many games, such systems have become less prevalent in favor of characters that are more versatile; characters still match an archetype, but are able to learn skills outside their class.
Many Final Fantasy games have been included in various lists of top games. Several games have been listed on multiple IGN "Top Games" lists. Eleven games were listed on Famitsu's 2006 "Top 100 Favorite Games of All Time", four of which were in the top ten, with Final Fantasy X and Final Fantasy VII coming first and second, respectively. The series holds seven Guinness World Records in the Guinness World Records Gamer's Edition 2008, which include the "Most Games in an RPG Series" (13 main games, seven enhanced games, and 32 spin-off games), the "Longest Development Period" (the production of Final Fantasy XII took five years), and the "Fastest-Selling Console RPG in a Single Day" (Final Fantasy X). The 2009 edition listed two games from the series among the top 50 consoles games: Final Fantasy XII at number 8 and Final Fantasy VII at number 20.
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I tried Board Game Bento one month just as a present to myself. Honestly, I could have purchased all the games for cheaper from "that big online store." And there was one game I never would have purchased for myself, ever. It is a theme I just don't care for. The other 2 games I haven't played yet. Honestly I don't know if they are any good. I've never heard of either of them. There were a couple mini surprises in the box (which was nice), but it wasn't overwhelming.
Planet Surprise by Notre Game is a scratch and play, disposable game, much like scratch-off lottery tickets. I love playing scratch-off tickets, so I was intrigued, however, this one fell flat for me. Gianna and I tried this one and we both felt the same - it’s an interesting concept, but we didn’t feel it had any strategy involved or any real benefit to playing it against other people.
Board Game Bento, today’s sponsor, has a different theme each month, and they guarantee at least $80 worth of games and accessories in each box. A monthly subscription (with no commitment and the ability to cancel anytime) will set you back $50 + s/h. Committing to a six-month subscription reduces that price a bit. So it’s pricier than the comic book version (and many other monthly subscription boxes), which obviously means you’re taking more of a risk.
As I said, they guarantee at least an $80 value, and they also promise at least three different games in each box (or two games and an expansion). Some boxes also include accessories, such as dice or other ephemera, so your mileage may vary from month to month. However, a one-month subscription would make a great gift idea for any gamers you know. Because let’s be honest: who doesn’t love opening a mystery box?
So what’s inside? Well, recent boxes have been themed to party games, food, and investigations. Some of the goodies inside have been Dixit, Boss Monster 2, Hoity Toity, Once Upon a Time, and Sushi Go!, so if you’re already a gamer and have a collection, you obviously run the risk of getting a game you already own. But that’s the risk with any blind box service, to be honest.
Magic is another common RPG element in the series. The method by which characters gain magic varies between installments, but is generally divided into classes organized by color: "White magic", which focuses on spells that assist teammates; "Black magic", which focuses on harming enemies; "Red magic", which is a combination of white and black magic, "Blue magic", which mimics enemy attacks; and "Green magic" which focuses on applying status effects to either allies or enemies. Other types of magic frequently appear such as "Time magic", focusing on the themes of time, space, and gravity; and "Summoning magic", which evokes legendary creatures to aid in battle and is a feature that has persisted since Final Fantasy III. Summoned creatures are often referred to by names like "Espers" or "Eidolons" and have been inspired by mythologies from Arabic, Hindu, Norse, and Greek cultures.
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