Fantasy is one of the most renowned gaming franchises of all time. As it enters
its thirtieth year of existence, it is nigh-on impossible to keep track of how
many games bear its name given how many releases supplement the development of
the 'main series' of numbered titles, the most recent of which was last year's
Final Fantasy XV.
Since their 2004 merger with Enix, developers Square have focused increasingly on the release of sequels, something that once seemed unthinkable. Perhaps the most well-known of these are Final Fantasy X-2 and the two follow-ons to Final Fantasy XIII, XIII-2 and Lightning Returns. A number of older titles have also been revisited, most notably with Final Fantasy IV: The After Years and the extensive compilation of Final Fantasy VII.
This focus seems to have ceased for the time being given that there are no plans for any sequels to Final Fantasy XV, though that is instead being expanded upon with sizable swathes of downloadable content.
Hidden amongst the more popular sequels are several others that have largely been forgotten - many of them for good reason.
6. Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings
Ten years after its initial release in Europe, Final Fantasy XII has once again hit the shelves in the form of the Zodiac Age, a high definition remaster of the original game. Given XII's status as one of the most divisive titles in the series (a result of its countless deviations from the traditional Final Fantasy formula), time will tell if it will be as successful as the previous re-releases of Final Fantasy X and its sequel Final Fantasy X-2.
The obscurity of Revenant Wings, the 2007 Nintendo DS sequel to XII, is epitomised by its omission from this release, even though the trio of Kingdom Hearts remasters has proven that Square Enix can and will rework their handheld titles into home console ones.
There are a number of reasons why Revenant Wings has been lost to the mists of time. In retrospect, predominantly gearing it around the characters of Vaan and Penelo was a mistake given their blandness in comparison to Basch, Ashe, Balthier and Fran. Another mistake was following up one of the darkest Final Fantasies with a game targeted at a much younger audience. This was probably forced as much by the young average age of the DS' user-base as it was by the developers but it nevertheless created quite a disconnect.
Despite these mistakes the game is actually far from terrible, succeeding as an enjoyable real time strategy experience throughout. Square Enix's seeming unwillingness to acknowledge it alongside its forebear seems certain to keep it consigned as a mere footnote in their back catalogue, however.