'Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call' Sets A Whole New Stage For Square Enix Fans

September 22, 2014

Square Enix has an extensive reputation for creating some of the industry's best role-playing games that dates all the way back to the days of the Nintendo Entertainment System. From the intense gameplay to the meaningful stories, Square Enix has turned out one amazing RPG after another for decades, and no matter what, there's always one thing that is an unquestionable highlight: the music. From the blips and bloops of the 8 and 16-bit era, to the full orchestral pieces of the modern-day games, the music of the Final Fantasy series is second to none, and Square Enix knows it. A few years ago, they collected some of their greatest music pieces into a rhythm game that was structured as, what else, an RPG, and Theatrhythm Final Fantasy was born on the 3DS. In success, a sequel followed, a second act if you will, with the newly released Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call which brings a whole lot more game, with more songs, characters, and modes that Final Fantasy fans know and love.

Developer: insideszero Co., Ltd
Publisher: Square Enix

If you were paying attention, insidezero have worked on a handful of really great games over the last few years, including the original Theatrhythm Final Fantasy. Some of their past highlights have been on Nintendo's portable platforms, and include such notable games like Electroplankton, Retro Game Challenge and DualPenSports. More recently they have been credited with working on the museum tour guide application, Nintendo 3DS Guide: Louvre, and Nintendo's twisted retro compilations NES Remix and NES Remix 2. On the publisher side of the things, Square Enix have been pumping out Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy spin-offs for decades now, so their characters and music have been treated with the utmost respect in Curtain Call.

Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call blends the worlds of role-playing and touchscreen-based rhythm games together seamlessly. Square Enix have introduced a loose story that has players collecting Rhythm Points to help illuminate crystals to save the world. The story in Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call is less important than the gameplay, which falls very much in line with its predecessor. In the game's three different stage types (Field, Battle, and Event), players must tap (or button press) along with the notes as they scroll on the top screen. The better of a performance and the harder the song, the more crystals and experience are collected, and the faster your characters level up. The song library is culled from Final Fantasy's long history, as are the characters, both of which are unlocked along the way. With over 200 songs and 60 characters (not including DLC) Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call offers quite an extensive amount of gameplay, and even introduces some new modes for competitive play.

Much like the original Theatrhythm game, Curtain Call is a 3DS exclusive, for the time being. However, if history repeats itself, there's a good chance that Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call may end up making its way to iOS devices sometime in the future.

Like a good sequel, Theatrhythm Final Fantasy: Curtain Call is, for all intents and purposes, simply more Theatrhythm Final Fantasy. And, that's okay. By increasing the amount of content offered in the game (music, characters, modes, etc.), Square Enix has rounded out the Theatrhythm package, offering even the most casual Final Fantasy something that they connect with in this game. On the gameplay side of things, the rhythm mechanics are simple enough to learn, and build steadily throughout the game. After a few hours of game time, virtually anyone should feel right at home "battling" their way through Curtain Call's levels with the taps and swipes of their stylus. Bridging the gap between nostalgia and enticing gameplay, Curtain Call is a must for anyone that considers themselves a serious Square Enix fan.