Paige FTW: A Little Dissidia Goes A Long Way

It’s a strange world when a mobile tie-in title feels more fun to play than its full-length big brother, but such as it is with Dissidia Final Fantasy: Opera Omnia.

While Dissidia is characterized by its wildly chaotic 3-D battles, Opera Omnia simplifies things — dramatically. We’re back to the 2-D, turn-based traditional Final Fantasy set up, albeit with the Bravery-HP mechanic determining how damage is dealt.

Surprisingly, it translates very well. It adds a subtle layer of strategy to the classic affair: Is it worth hoarding Bravery to unleash a single, deadly HP blow, or is it better to whittle away at both, maintaining parity?

Each character — and there are plenty, including a few cameos from the Crystal Chronicles subseries as well as the main titles — has unique skills representative of their roles in their original games (Vivi is a physically fragile black mage who can cast Fire, for instance). Characters further come with weapons that can be enhanced through gameplay.

It’s a free-to-play title, so yes, there are lootboxes — though luckily the game is generous with gems early on and these nefarious crates contain only weapons, not characters. So far, I haven’t felt too put out about it (this is no Fire Emblem Heroes situation). But that, as with all such titles, will likely change in time.

The game’s biggest downside is its nigh-constant updates. Open a menu, download an update, start a mission, download an update, open a character profile, download an update… This game can really drain your battery and data plan. 

I’m also not a fan of the half-hearted chibi art design… Rather than appearing cute, characters just seem oddly disproportionate with oversized heads and, strangely, hands. But hey, I give credit that there’s even a unique art style in this game to begin with.

I feel good about Opera Omnia — better than I do about its PS4 counterpart, honestly. Time will tell if it lives up to its early potential.