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Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin – Zero Punctuation

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This week in Zero Punctuation, Yahtzee reviews Stranger of Paradise: Final Fantasy Origin.

For more major games Yahtz has reviewed lately, check out Tiny Tina’s Wonderlands, Ghostwire: Tokyo, Babylon’s Fall, Horizon Forbidden West, and Elden Ring.

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I’ve mentioned before I like to go into a game knowing very little about it. That was easy this week ‘cos I can still barely remember the fucking title of Stranger of Paradise. Even now I’m gonna have to look that up to double check it wasn’t Stranger In Paradise or Stranger To Paradise lest I earn the wrath of the Preposition Police. But anyway, the review code came down and I said “Ooh what’s this game?” and then two hours later I said it again with a different inflection: “Eurgh, what IS this game?” The sort of tone of voice a doctor would use if they were looking at your endoscopy video and saw something with rudimentary legs and bat wings. The second half of the title might fill in some blanks: Final Fantasy Origin. The implication being that this game depicts the starting point for everything that the Final Fantasy series has done and been over the years. And you know something, viewer, if that is the case then it would fucking explain a lot. In defiance of that, however, it’s not a turn based RPG or even one of those hybrid systems I always hate because they’re like trying to kick a giant scorpion to death while programming the microwave, but a hack and slash dungeon crawler that’s a little bit soulslike. Ooh, you were late for this bandwagon, Final Fantasy. You’re gonna have to sit at the back with the tambourine players.

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Yahtzee Croshaw
Yahtzee is the Escapist’s longest standing talent, having been writing and producing its award winning flagship series, Zero Punctuation, since 2007. Before that he had a smattering of writing credits on various sites and print magazines, and has almost two decades of experience in game journalism as well as a lifelong interest in video games as an artistic medium, especially narrative-focused. He also has a foot in solo game development - he was a big figure in the indie adventure game scene in the early 2000s - and writes novels. He has six novels published at time of writing with a seventh on the way, all in the genres of comedic sci-fi and urban fantasy. He was born in the UK, emigrated to Australia in 2003, and emigrated again to California in 2016, where he lives with his wife and daughters. His hobbies include walking the dog and emigrating to places.