Final Fantasy IV Soundtrack (Pixel Remaster), 2021, Nobuo Uematsu / Various
True, Square‘s Final Fantasy had been a milestone in RPG history, refining concepts introduced not long before by Dragon Quest. Sequels Final Fantasy II and III were among the best-selling RPGs of their generation, offering gameplay innovation (FFII) and what’s maybe the 8-bit era’s most polished, expansive role-playing game (FFIII). However, it was really with Final Fantasy IV that the franchise joined the ranks of gaming’s most hallowed and revered titles. Final Fantasy IV was a massive influence on the development of the entire RPG genre, particularly through its focus on dramatic storytelling and fleshed-out characters. The game’s legacy as a trailblazer seems secure – there’s a good reason why it keeps appearing on various “best games of all time” lists on both sides of the Pacific, clearly beloved by generations of gamers.