Released In: 1990
The world is in a sorry state. The earth is rotting, the sea rages, the wind has stopped, and darkness covers the land. Prophecy foretells that four Light Warriors will one day come to save the world. You take on the role of those Light Warriors. To return order to the world, you must defeat the four Elemental Fiends and in doing so, relight the four ORBS that you carry. Then you must travel 2000 years back in time and defeat evil at its roots.
Syd Lexia: If you're going to play the original Final Fantasy, play it on the NES. The GBA remake, Dawn of Souls, is a complete piece of shit containing badly renamed enemies and a significantly lessened difficulty. The Marsh Cave, which was the first real challenge of the NES version and required you to stock up on pure potions and heal potions, was about as hard as murdering preschoolers in the GBA version and classic enemies like Wizard and Green Ogre now go by inferior names like Piscodemon and Ogre Chief. But forget about that. Instead, let's bask in the awesomeness of the original...
Valdronius: This game is the cornerstone of the greatest video game series of all time; that accolade alone warrants top honors. Even without the dozen or more Final Fantasy games that followed, the original is still a great game. Here you are presented with hours and hours of gameplay, leading a party of your own design, through battles and bosses and dungeons. You must restore the four elemental orbs and restore peace to the world. Square’s first installment in the Final Fantasy franchise has a huge map to explore, lots of weapons and armor to find, and tons of enemies to kill. It was not without shortcomings, however. Wasting attacks on creatures that were already dead was very annoying. Also, when I played through the game, I didn’t know how to upgrade my character classes, and it is never hinted at in the game. So I was stuck using second-rate weapons and armor, right up until the end of the game when I actually defeated Chaos. Despite these minor annoyances, Final Fantasy is still one of my all-time favorite video games.
Rycona: This is the first game I ever played and it taught me a lot about many things, directly and indirectly. If it weren't for this game, I might be a very different person today.
greeneyedzeke: This game harkens back to a more innocent time, when characters had short names and casting magic spells didn’t necessitate watching twenty-minute long CGI sequences. And there was no J-Pop to be found anywhere in the original Final Fantasy. Square may have mishandled the franchise in more recent times, but the original NES incarnation is still a classic.
Dr. Jeebus: The first RPG I ever played. This game seemed impossible at the time, and I don't think I ever wound up beating it until the days of emulation, probably because we never owned it.