The NES may have been where Final Fantasy made its initial debut, but it wasn’t until the SNES days that the series would really start to blossom. However, many fans would argue that the series didn’t explode until the PS1 thanks to Final Fantasy VII. Including that game, there were twelve core titles and spinoffs released for the console, though there are two other games worth mentioning before moving on.


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Ehrgeiz: God Bless the Ring and Vagrant Story are technically related to the Final Fantasy franchise. Ehrgeiz is a wrestling game that had Final Fantasy VII characters like Cloud and Sephiroth in cameo roles. Vagrant Story didn’t launch as part of the Ivalice series but was later retconned into it. Those examples may make things sound confusing but the rest of the PS1 Final Fantasy games are a lot more straightforward.

Updated September 9, 2022, by Tom Bowen: Many will argue that the golden age of RPGs came in the early nineties, with the SNES boasting some of the genre’s very best games. While this may be true to a certain degree though, it wasn’t until the PS1 era and the release of Final Fantasy VII that role-playing games really started to find mainstream success in the west. Following the success of Final Fantasy VII, Sony’s little gray box would play host to plenty of other great JRPGs and also receive ports of most of the earlier Final Fantasy games. In fact, western audiences would end up being able to play all but the series’ third installment on the PS1, which is somewhat ironic given that Final Fantasy VI was originally sold as Final Fantasy III when it first made its way west. There were plenty of great Final Fantasy spin-offs available on the console too, making the list of Final Fantasy games on the PS1 a fairly long one.

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12 Chocobo Stallion

Chocobo Stallion was released in 1999, though only in Japan. It was a simulation game themed around raising and racing Chocobo with a heavy focus being placed on the former. It sold reasonably well, but, sadly, not quite well enough to warrant a North American or PAL release.

Unlike Final Fantasy VII, which it seems like this game took a lot of its inspiration from, players took an offhand approach to the racing segments. That’s okay, though, as raising Chocobo has its own perks which can be quite relaxing in certain situations.

11 Dice De Chocobo

Dice de Chocobo was also released in 1999 as a Japan exclusive. It did get a GBA port in 2002 but this was also a Japanese exclusive, making it very difficult for western players to get their hands on a physical copy of the game.

For those wondering, the game is a lot like an RPG version of Monopoly. There’s a whole series like this in Japan called Itadaki Street, which, like Dice de Chocobo, has never really been given a chance in the west, aside from Fortune Street for the Wii.

10 Chocobo No Fushigi Na Dungeon

Chocobo no Fushigi na Dungeon was released in 1996 and is yet another Japan-only Chocobo-themed adventure. It has a special place in history though, being the first Final Fantasy spinoff to the Mystery Dungeon series of dungeon crawler roguelikes.

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It’s a little harder than the Pokemon Mystery Dungeon games but it’s not a million miles away in terms of user-friendliness. This is a good roguelike for beginners looking to expand on their love of Final Fantasy and an interesting piece of video game history in its own right.

9 Final Fantasy Chronicles

Final Fantasy Chronicles was released in North America in 2001. It was a combo pack that included ROM ports of Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy IV. For whatever reason, the compilation was never released in PAL regions, though Europeans did eventually get a port of Final Fantasy IV as part of the Final Fantasy Anthology pack the following year.

However, that these ports were burned onto discs was not great because the load times were infamously bad, which, understandably, perhaps, could be incredibly frustrating for players. The added cutscenes were a nice touch, but this is arguably the worst way to play either game.

8 Final Fantasy Anthology

Final Fantasy Anthology was a similar combo pack to Final Fantasy Chronicles and was released a couple of years earlier in 1999 for the North American market. It included ports of Final Fantasy VI and, for the first time outside of Japan, Final Fantasy V.

The latter was originally a Japan-only SNES game released in 1992, meaning that it took nearly eight years to make its way west. Interestingly, PAL regions were treated to a standalone release of Final Fantasy VI, with their version of Final Fantasy Anthology instead containing the series’ fourth and fifth installments.

7 Chocobo’s Dungeon 2

Chocobo’s Dungeon 2 is the first game that North America got from the long-running Chocobo’s Dungeon spinoff franchise. It’s very similar to the first title in terms of gameplay and doesn’t seem like much was added to differentiate the two games from one another.

On the plus side, fans of the Final Fantasy series were still happy to see the game make its way west. It was around this time that the series was really starting to become popular outside of Japan, making the decision to localize the game for a western audience a bit of a no-brainer.

6 Chocobo Racing

Chocobo Racing, unlike Chocobo Stallion, did allow players to manually race their feathered friends. It’s still a very different experience to the one found in Final Fantasy VII though, with the game serving as Squaresoft’s attempt at a Mario Kart clone.

Besides the titular Chocobo and other Final Fantasy-based monsters and classes, the game also has some secret characters from the series in it like Cloud. It’s nowhere near as good as some of the other great kart racing games available on the PS1, but can still be fun in small doses.

5 Final Fantasy Origins

Final Fantasy Origins was one of the last games released for the original PlayStation, arriving in North America in early 2003. For those wondering, this was already three years into the PS2’s lifecycle. However, the pack did launch at the $20 price point, which was a very nice incentive for prospective buyers.

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The compilation pack collected the first two games in the series, meaning that it marked the debut of Final Fantasy II in the west. For whatever reason, both games were actually based on the WonderSwan Color remakes from 2000 rather than the original NES versions, though the differences were fairly minimal.

4 Final Fantasy VIII

Final Fantasy VIII had some pretty big shoes to fill after the resounding success of Final Fantasy VII. These lofty expectations may be why the reaction to the game was so split when it launched, as some just didn’t feel like it carried the series forward quite as much as it should have.

It’s now seen as one of several black sheep of the family and is very different from any other entry. That said, it’s still a great RPG that pushed the PS1 to its limits every bit as much as its predecessor and is well worth checking out for those who haven’t already.

3 Final Fantasy IX

Final Fantasy IX was a sendoff to the classic Final Fantasy medieval settings which had punctuated so many of the series’ earlier installments. In many ways though, it’s exactly what the series and the PS1 needed at the time.

Perhaps one day the proper games will go back to this more fantastical setting and get away from the more futuristic motifs and ideas found throughout most of the more recent mainline games. Final Fantasy XVI looks like it may come pretty close, but time will tell.

2 Final Fantasy Tactics

Final Fantasy Tactics was the first entry in this tactical RPG spinoff and one of the very best. It was successful enough of an idea that Square Enix to decided to use it for its world, Ivalice, to create a sprawling universe that connected spinoffs and mainline entries alike.

At the time of writing, there are only six games in the Ivalice sub-series so far, but that number is likely to grow in the future. Even if it doesn’t, Final Fantasy Tactics remains one of the best tactical RPGs ever made and is a must-play for fans of this fantastic sub-genre.

1 Final Fantasy VII

Final Fantasy VII was the first 3D mainline Final Fantasy game ever made and the culmination of the series up to that point in time. It really upped the ante in terms of visuals, storytelling, and gameplay when compared to its NES and SNES predecessors and helped the franchise to really take off in the west.

The PS1 had some hits prior to this, but this is one of the games that made the system so popular. Such was the hype, even non-RPG fans jumped onto the Final Fantasy bandwagon with millions of copies of the game being sold. The game was so popular that it spawned its own sub-series, which includes multiple spin-off games and a feature-length anime movie.

MORE: Things We Miss From Early Final Fantasy Games (& Things We Don’t)



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