When Square-Enix’s Final Fantasy XV released in Late 2016, the game also offered a Season Pass to gamers. With the promise of filling story gaps of the main cast as well as a significant amount of side content for the main game. Episode Prompto is the second of three story driven pieces being released, but is it worth the time spent?
Final Fantasy XV was well received by gamers. Or even their fates. The storyline, while offering an interesting premise, offered very little explanation as to why certain events were unfolding…unless you were willing to view the additional CGI movie and mini-series. For all the critique the biggest positive was the relationship of the main 4 characters. Noctis, Prompto, Ignis and Gladiolus shared a journey that was perfectly described by Square Enix as a road trip. 4 buddies in one car almost in over their heads. The banter between the 4 felt realistic in this fantasy adventure. Teasing each other, getting on each other’s nerves and backing each other up when in tough spots.
Episode Prompto offers a small but satisfying glimpse regarding the whereabouts of…you guess it, Prompto. Taking place concurrently with 15’s storyline Prompto is on his own aside from a few cameos from 15’s cast of characters. The DLC shows what happened to him during a key scene of separation from the cast in the latter half of the main storyline. Left to his own device, Prompto comes to a realization of his past and questions his own existence.
Game-play wise Final Fantasy XV: Episode Prompto’s adventure plays like a third person shooter. Gears of War this is not however, with enemy a.i. making poor decisions trying to avoid your shots and at times feeling more like a firing range and less like intense cover based shooter. Shooting an enemy in the head doesn’t feel rewarding and the melee combat pales in comparison to Noctis’s in 15’s main quest.
Final Fantasy XV’s game begins with the line “For Final Fantasy fans and first timers” and Episode Prompto feels very much in that wheelhouse. Feeling more like an attempt to mix classic Final Fantasy tropes with modern takes on shooters. It’s not terrible however and given how shorts the DLC, taking me about 2 and a half hours.it neve r over stays it’s welcome or feels like a chore.
Being made available with Final Fantasy 15’s off road update, Episode Prompto provides a snow mobile to get through the new snow filled setting. While not ground breaking the new vehicle and setting provided a welcome change to the main games forests, deserts and clearings, with snow settings being very limited in the main quest. Extra outfits and weapons can be found and carried over to the main quest as well.
By the episode’s end, I was pretty happy with the experience. As a fan of Final Fantasy XV I found the experience enjoyable and have been eager for more story content within the universe. That being said – the entire experience leans heavily on Prompto. If you found his presence in Final Fantasy XV grating, this might not be the experience for you. For the rest of us though, it’s a nice addition to the Final Fantasy XV experience