Unceremoniously tucked away under the downloadable content option on the game's main menu, Final Fantasy XV: Comrades is a full co-op-based expansion that takes place near the end of Final Fantasy XV's story. Without spoiling anything, it details the events of the world's darkest period, where humanity struggles to survive in a land that has no light. It's essentially a post-apocalyptic setting, and it's your job to help rebuild by restoring power to various different outposts scattered across the map.
You play as your own custom character this time around, and the expansion's plot focuses on your involvement. However, this isn't your typical role-playing adventure. Comrades has a lot more in common with something like Monster Hunter or Toukiden, in the sense that everything is hub and mission-based. You start out by selecting a specific quest, you join up with other players -- or computer controlled allies, if you want to play alone -- and then you're off to slay some monsters. Finish up the mission, return to your hub, upgrade your equipment, and repeat.
As mentioned, there is an overarching story here, but don't go in expecting it to be particularly deep -- it's really just a backbone for the many quests that you'll undertake. The majority of said quests see you lay waste to beasts of all shapes and sizes as you work to complete an overall objective. You may have to defend a certain location from waves of foes, or you might be tasked with taking down groups of enemies until a boss appears.
Unfortunately, the quality of missions can vary. The more basic tasks tend to be the most enjoyable, since you're just whacking creatures with like-minded people, but escort quests and more nuanced missions -- like having to stop a particular enemy from reaching a destination -- just feel awkward and, at times, frustrating.
This issue is driven home by the fact that missions generally only last a few minutes or so. Depending on how efficient your allies are, the action can be over in a flash, and this is where Comrades' biggest problem enters the equation: the load times are terrible. Bite-sized quests aren't necessarily a flaw on their own, but you end up spending more time waiting for the expansion to load than you do actually mashing monsters.
The whole structure of Comrades is defined by loading screens, and it all just feels so disjointed as a result. Boot the expansion up, loading screen. Select a mission, loading screen. Find players, loading screen. Finish pre-mission preparations, loading screen. Complete mission, loading screen. Prepare post-mission meal, loading screen. Eat post-mission meal, loading screen. Then you end up back at your hub ready to do it all again.
It wouldn't be so bad if you could simply stick together with the same players, but for some baffling reason, you can't. Once the mission's over, you end up all the way back at your hub, and you've got no choice but to repeat the cycle. It seems like such a significant oversight, especially when you consider how much time you're already wasting just to get to the point where you're grouped up with other players.
And ultimately, it's a shame that Comrades isn't better constructed, because there's definite fun to be had in banding together and taking the fight to the game's intricately designed enemies. The expansion doesn't do much to iterate on Final Fantasy XV's combat system, but it's the additional elements of teamwork that make it click. Healing your buddies with a well-timed burst of curative magic can mean the difference between victory and defeat, while chaining together warp strikes with your allies to topple huge opponents feels great.
Having said all that, we're not entirely sure whether Final Fantasy XV's combat system is refined enough to prop up an entire expansion. In the main game, combat was just one part of the whole, and when coupled with some enjoyable exploration, its shortcomings could be stomached. But with Comrades, it's really the core of the experience, and its lack of depth starts to show when you're hitting the same enemies with the same combos over and over again.
Different weapon types do encourage experimentation, as do various offensive spells, but even then, fights can all too often descend into chaos as players simply spam the most effective abilities and attack combos, negating any real need for tactical thought.
Taking all of these criticisms into account, it makes you question whether the grind is worthwhile. Buying new weapons and using creature materials to upgrade them can be rewarding, and the same is true of supplying power to other areas of the map -- but it's hard to keep yourself motivated when the game's so keen on placing obstacles between you and the action.
Final Fantasy XV: Comrades ends up being a missed opportunity. The groundwork for a good co-op-based grind is here, but constant bouts of loading make the whole thing feel like a chore. The bite-sized missions are mostly enjoyable, but they're overshadowed by how long it takes to actually get into the action, and Final Fantasy XV's somewhat stunted combat system just isn't strong enough to support an entire expansion. With a few updates, Comrades could get better, but right now, it's too flawed to recommend to anyone other than hardcore fans of the main game.
Please let this turd die already
@ShogunRok So, how do you feel about the XV world? Do you still have interest in more from Noctis and the gang, or would you rather have a fully new FF?
The flashy looking but very basic combat was what put me off FFXV in the first place. Gimme gambits and turn based any day.
More disappointment. So glad I skipped this game. SE doesn't know how to make good FF games anymore.
@Kidfried I'm actually a big fan of FFXV's world. I think it's interesting and very unique, especially in the way that it combines realistic elements with fantastical stuff. I really enjoyed exploring it in FFXV, one of the highlights of the game in my opinion.
Part of me wants to see Square do more with the world, but at the same time, I think we may need to move on, so I'm a bit torn.
If it were up to me I think I'd probably go for a kind of FFXV-2 scenario, and make another full game set in FFXV's world, only more refined and better structured. That could be something special.
But I totally understand that some people just want to have FFXV over and done with, and at this point, I can't really blame them.
I'll be labelled a hater like always (FFXV was my GOTY for 2016, remember!) but I don't think any of this additional stuff has been very good. Character episodes have been wack, and the free updates have done nothing for me personally.
I still have yet to even finish the campaign despite buying this game Day One!I got to chapter 8 and then heard they were going to change the ending for the better so thought I would wait...but now I just can't be bothered as there are so much better games to get on with.
This dlc did kind of catch my interest but after this review I'm very not interested..
Ah well,still looking forward to that FFXV VR fishing game though
i personally think this one has high potential. this 1.00 just still not fully developed yet (also bugs occured often).
in future they can add new interface, exploring mission.
Basicly the loading times is the same as if you load a savegame in main game, so, like, they loads the whole world.
while in-game mission itself actually an open world, but the game limits the area you can explore.
as for other thing, if you a fan of Monster Hunter game, for now this expansion very similiar to it, but with different weapon upgrade system.
the stats, skills and magic implementationin weapon upgrades for me quite good.
with more slots available , it will be highly customizable than any FF game ever, which is nice.
Yes, I agree about this one thing that wore me off.
so, i do grind and farm materials while reading books, watching some movie, eating, etc.
hope they will improvise things to be more seamless.
and of course, adds dungeon missions, exploration, random generated area and even link attack like in the main game.
judging by so many gameplay inside one disc (or digital download), it's not imposiible to add more and more things in FFXV.
Its a beautiful world.
but not everyone like it.
just like real world.
FFXV lovers should give more chance and help it grow.
for haters, there's still lots of new game for you guys to play, please go away, your harsh opinion meaninglessly not needed since you guys not play this game anyway
oh, well, i go back farm some behemoth horn or something for now...
FF15 was awesome in its quirky oddness. I'll take a weird game like that over Uncharted: "Polished to Perfection" Drakes Trousers any day.
But it only really worked for me as a stand alone experience - I dedicated two weeks to this game and enjoyed it completely, warts n all. The DLC isn't necessarily worse than anything in the base game, I don't know, I have not tried any of it. But it's just not a world I want to return to, despite the fun I had there the first time round. That's just how it is with some games really.
@ShogunRok Thanks for the response! Love hearing your perspective on RPGs everytime.
You know what? I'd totally play this if it was it's own quality, well polished game. But I'm done with XV forever at this point.
Half baked like the main game.
It could've been excellent.
Ah well, I'll just stick to the main game.
Still better than Battlefront 2! xD
@kyleforrester87 totally with you. Great comment.
Nice review @ShogunRok the fighting is one of the weaker elements off FF15. Its crazy to think they they have only just released this when the main game was out a year ago. Do we know if many people are still playing it?
Everyone so happy and eager to dismiss this based on the review.
Like, did Mr. Final Fantasy come at your house and killed the dog or something?
That said, i don't know what is considered an unacceptable loading time, but i'm pretty sure i didn't see ANY in Comrades, besides the initial one.
The combat is chaotic and doesn't encourage elaborated strategies, but it can be fun.
Not talking about the fact there is always something to unlock, like new clothes, missions, weapons, locations etc.?
You can log in, do a couple hunts, unlock some new features and log out in less than half an hour.
This is not an expansion meant to lure new people in, it is meant for those who already like the game and want to spend more time within its world and lore.
And it does just that.
I'm not saying it deserved an 8, but it sure as hell doesn't deserve 5.
Too many words spent in bashing on loading times and nothing said about the features of the expansion, too.
Alas, i knew this was coming.
I'd say it's definitely worth a try. The combat is actually better than in the original game, as you can customize your character to play as a specific class. My character is basically a paladin, I create large barriers to shield allies and counter enemy attacks I have a passive ability that makes these require less mana, I have a large hp pool, decent elemental resistances and can cast healing spells.
I could choose to make a dragoon-eske character and sacrifice my barriers for increased aerial damage and swap my shield, mace and katana for a aerial weapons like a spear and shuriken.
The boon of Comrades is that you're playing as an individual with other people who can cover your weaknesses ... and can hopefully anticipate counter or evade enemy attacks unlike the way your party does in the original game. You also don't have overpowered enemies that you can easily fell with an (I win button) magic spell. As far as combat goes, this is a better take than the original game.
I don't disagree with this article ... the loading scenes become a bit obnoxious, you should be able to keep your party between missions. The player should also be able to choose when they'd like to eat, just to save empty mission time. There are bugs, easy cheats and a few stages that don't always work properly. These things hopefully will be addressed soon. But still Comrades isn't a miss. ... It's alright. It's fun and there's a lot more here than I expected to find in this expansion.
... It also needs a plot. But the original game takes place over few weeks. This game takes place over a period of 10 years, I haven't gotten far enough to know if they've included something to make it more involving.
Been playing this all day, and definitely don't think its 5/10, should be 8/10 at least
I think at this point, reviews are just biased.
@Bliquid If you didn't notice the load times I don't know what to tell you. The only way I could stomach playing this for as long as I did was to have a stream or something on in the background that I could constantly turn to when it was busy loading the next thing. It's a bloody mess.
@DASchenk If I wanted to be biased I wouldn't review it at all.
Months later I’ve returned to playing FFXV and Comrades isn’t too shabby as a side game. The character creation is a blast in Comrades. I actually prefer playing the main game—seeing all the dungeons and finishing every hunt possible is still a treat. Even at Level 87, some creatures are hard to kill off. Maybe playing Zodiac Age made me like FFXV again.
@ShogunRok : i see other people, here in the comments, that liked the expansion while noticing the long loading times, so i guess the "results may vary" in that department.
But you are denying all the things it does good because of a single highly subjective fault.
I read elsewhere you don't review based on the price itself and, to a degree, it's a commendable approach.
But i payed 25 € for the season pass, and for that amount of money i'm getting an impressive amount of content ( counting all the expansions, ofc) that i find more than enjoyable.
Another highly subjective point of view, i'll admit.
But you gave Comrades an insufficiency, and that's not fair to all the stuff there is in it.
Awesome graphics, awesome music, lots of customization, lots of things to do and bits of story and lore to discover.
Then yes, you have caothic combat and (arguably) long loading times.
Again, is this a 8 expansion? A Witcher level expansion? No.
It's not a 5 expansion either, though.
If only, because it has no loot boxes
Guess, I'll wait to see if SE makes any improvement to it. Are there a lot of gears you can earn from missions?
@themcnoisy Well, I assume people who bought the Season Pass will be playing it and let's not forget there are also new players who had only just got the game.
@shogunrok Hey, i'm sorry, but it really feels that way to me
Load times aren't even anywhere near as bad as you're making them sound. 9/10 times, i find a group extremely quickly, loading into the actual mission doesn't even take a minute, unless I get a version 1.0 style glitch. And from the Camp scene, i usually end up actually in the mission in about 30 seconds, which is nothing. going back to Lestallum is usually worst, but it no worse than any other game
i tried putting something on while i played, but found that i usually never had enough time to pay attention to it.
And it really doesn't make any sense to call the other modes awkward or frustrating, i never had any of that. In both Escorts and Defense, you can just warp to your escort target and wait, or to higher ground to see where the next round of enemies are coming from.
I get that the battle system isn't for everybody, but i have plenty of fun with it, and do think it requires me to pay attention.
By all accounts, this is just like most online multiplayer, which get patched and improved as time goes
i like Comrades but i do agree it has some issues, the frequent load times, the repetitive quests and the way the party system works so as it stands a 5 or a 6 out of 10 sounds about right but i think once (or IF) Square add more to it and refine it to make it quicker and easier to use i can see it going up to a 8 out of 10 IF Square can get it up to it's full potential
@Bliquid I'm not denying anything, though. I never try to go into minute details about progression and weapon upgrades in a review because then it starts to read like a fact sheet. Besides, I don't think any of that stuff is particularly great anyway. You can unlock some stylish outfits, for sure, but other than that...
I do agree on the season pass price, however. If you really like FFXV and happen to really like the DLC you're getting quite a lot of bang for your buck.
Sadly none of the add-ons have clicked with me. I think if Square can patch Comrades up and make it more streamlined then it'd be far better, and I'd probably go back to it. Like the review says, the potential is here, I just find its issues too hard to ignore.
@DASchenk No, the load times aren't massive (barring a couple) but they're incredibly frequent. You can barely move from one part of the game to the next without it cutting to black and loading something. Compared to the two to five minutes you spend actually fighting monsters in a mission, it's ridiculous.
I realised just how bad it was when I was grinding for specific materials. The quest was even above my level, and I was spending roughly four minutes actually getting into the mission, and then it'd be over in about two and a half. I just don't think it's good enough for what should be a quick and easy co-op mode.
But if you enjoy it, fair enough. I'd just prefer not to be called biased. Like I say, if I really was biased, I wouldn't have reviewed it — the only reason I took it on was because I was genuinely looking forward to Comrades because I love good co-op.
At the end of the day I'd like nothing more than to praise all of FFXV's DLC because I really did enjoy playing the main game, but just don't think any of the add-ons have been particularly good.
lol, I'm actually enjoying this more than the main FFXV game. Everything is weakened by the leveling structure though, it could use less quest grinding and more enemy variety. Kinda hope they expand on this a lot more, connecting the glaives from Kingsglaive to the hunters we meet in FFXV is a fun idea and hopefully not thrown away.
I'm playing on a OneS though, loading times were about the same as using the fast travel button in the singleplayer portion. Could likely experience longer load times the more I play though.
Enjoying this a lot on my part, the Kw based map thing is very addicting. It could be even better if they expand on it ...
If you play solo do you pick who your comrades are?
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