This game has excellent special effects. The battle system is innovative and fun but has an autopilot mode which kinda takes the necessity out of player interaction. In addition it is also real time and there are too many pauses in your character behaviors that give the enemies the drop on you. The music is nice although not always appropriate for what is going on. Game play is almost completely linear which is a serious departure from most of the series and allows for very little exploration until about 70 percent of the way through the story; at which point you likely have lost interest in the idea of leaving the beaten path. Level grinding, which is one of the key parts of any good RPG is essentially pointless since your strength is regulated by your progress through the story and you can only progress in strength once you pass key milestones in the story.  The largest problem with this game, however, is it's total lack of an enjoyable story or memorable characters. The story it does tell is downright pointless compared to some of the series' predecessors and the characters are by far some of the most aggravating and obnoxious ever to appear in a video game. All they do is whine and cry most of the time... How can you be behind a band of six heroes that spend half the adventure whining, crying, and threatening to kill each other? Only 2 of them are even conceivably likable and the others you simply wish would disappear.  I would give it a much higher rating if it had some semblance of an engaging story or a cast that you weren't wishing would perish in battle. So, basically, awful story, characters, and generic dialogue aside... It's an OK game and is entertaining if you can see beyond the painful lack of purpose behind it and the unrelenting aggravation that it's flaws will inevitably cause.