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Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of the Future

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A volume of all-new, character-driven stories expanding on the world of the hit video game Final Fantasy XV. This deluxe, hardcover edition includes full-color inserts featuring concept art and exclusive content. To oppose the gods or yield to fate? That is the question confronting each of the characters in The Dawn of the Future. Ardyn, having saved countless lives from the A volume of all-new, character-driven stories expanding on the world of the hit video game Final Fantasy XV. This deluxe, hardcover edition includes full-color inserts featuring concept art and exclusive content. To oppose the gods or yield to fate? That is the question confronting each of the characters in The Dawn of the Future. Ardyn, having saved countless lives from the Starscourge, means to become the Founder King of Lucis and instead is cast into tragic exile. On the day the Empire falls, as the imperial capital collapses around them, Commodore Aranea is entrusted with the life of a singular young girl. The Oracle Lunafreya, upon awakening from the slumber of death, discovers that her body has undergone an extraordinary transformation. And after gazing upon the eternal, Noctis, the True King, finally comes to terms with his destiny. Herein lie the stories of the dawning of a new world in Final Fantasy XV.


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A volume of all-new, character-driven stories expanding on the world of the hit video game Final Fantasy XV. This deluxe, hardcover edition includes full-color inserts featuring concept art and exclusive content. To oppose the gods or yield to fate? That is the question confronting each of the characters in The Dawn of the Future. Ardyn, having saved countless lives from the A volume of all-new, character-driven stories expanding on the world of the hit video game Final Fantasy XV. This deluxe, hardcover edition includes full-color inserts featuring concept art and exclusive content. To oppose the gods or yield to fate? That is the question confronting each of the characters in The Dawn of the Future. Ardyn, having saved countless lives from the Starscourge, means to become the Founder King of Lucis and instead is cast into tragic exile. On the day the Empire falls, as the imperial capital collapses around them, Commodore Aranea is entrusted with the life of a singular young girl. The Oracle Lunafreya, upon awakening from the slumber of death, discovers that her body has undergone an extraordinary transformation. And after gazing upon the eternal, Noctis, the True King, finally comes to terms with his destiny. Herein lie the stories of the dawning of a new world in Final Fantasy XV.

30 review for Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of the Future

  1. 5 out of 5

    Caleb M.

    I know that Final Fantasy XV is divided among fans of the series. But this game is extremely special. I loved it. I could fight and argue over the things you didn't like about it, which I don't mind doing in a respectful way, but no matter what this game will always be special to me. And this book in tandem is too. The last DLC to reach the game was episode Ardyn, with 3 more DLC's getting cancelled Square decided to release a book to give everything an....extended ending I guess you could call i I know that Final Fantasy XV is divided among fans of the series. But this game is extremely special. I loved it. I could fight and argue over the things you didn't like about it, which I don't mind doing in a respectful way, but no matter what this game will always be special to me. And this book in tandem is too. The last DLC to reach the game was episode Ardyn, with 3 more DLC's getting cancelled Square decided to release a book to give everything an....extended ending I guess you could call it. What was supposed to be Episode Aranea, Lunafreya, and Noctis has turned into this novel you see before you. And while many complained that it didn't release as DLC for the game, me being one of them, I am extremely happy that they at least got this out there for the fans of the game. Having played the game I could picture and imagine how the fight scenes in this book went down and it was oddly satisfying. A mixture of a well written book with the images from the game was a surprisingly nice compliment to my imagination. All 4 of the stories inside this book wife together extremely well and when I played Episode Ardyn I didn't realize that there was going to be a connecting thread throughout, and it was cool. Especially once you get to the Lunafreya episode you are hit smack in the face that all of these are intertwined. I could go on and on about this book and the game and how everything goes hand in hand, but I don't wanna do that here. I feel like it's not the place. But what I do want to say is that if you are a fan of the game then I highly recommend reading this book. It was so much fun jumping back into the world of Eos and I will be eternally sad that we (most likely) won't ever be going back for something new there. Which is such a shame because this is such a well thought out fully realized world that I just want more. I was hoping for a little more emotion from the ending, but having it down in written form and having played the rest in video game form, maybe it was more emotional and just my brain was confused putting the 2 together. But nevertheless I am still very satisfied. To reiterate briefly, if you've played the game and want more, read this. If you haven't played the game, it's probably not gonna set your world on fire. Fun fact: I named my dalmatian Lunafreya 😁

  2. 4 out of 5

    Bitchie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. THIS is what the end of the game should have been! I'm so upset that we got the rushed "ending" in game, and what seems to be the true ending canceled, and relegated to story only. It's been awhile since I played the game, so I have some confusion here and there. I know this consisted of Episodes Adryn, Aranea, Luna, and Noctis, and it finally gave Lunafreya some meaning to everything. We only saw her in bits and pieces in the game, and I was never sure if she and Noctis were really in love, or THIS is what the end of the game should have been! I'm so upset that we got the rushed "ending" in game, and what seems to be the true ending canceled, and relegated to story only. It's been awhile since I played the game, so I have some confusion here and there. I know this consisted of Episodes Adryn, Aranea, Luna, and Noctis, and it finally gave Lunafreya some meaning to everything. We only saw her in bits and pieces in the game, and I was never sure if she and Noctis were really in love, or were getting married out of duty, but this story shows that they really did love each other. It gives most everyone a happy ending, which I'm sure some people don't like, but it was nice for me, after flat out crying my eyes out after finishing the game. I was always left thinking "this is is?" and I suppose that wasn't it. THIS was it, I only wish I'd gotten to see it played out on my tv screen.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    Never enough The bane of being a final fantasy fan is that we always want more. I’m happy to leave the mechanics to the game developers, but the story has to be fantastic. I wish that the dlc for Luna had been released. I was satisfied with the ending provided to me originally, and now I want more. I adore that this story has been translated into English, and that the concept art is included in both the digital and physical format. The stories made me want more, wishing I had the ability to play Never enough The bane of being a final fantasy fan is that we always want more. I’m happy to leave the mechanics to the game developers, but the story has to be fantastic. I wish that the dlc for Luna had been released. I was satisfied with the ending provided to me originally, and now I want more. I adore that this story has been translated into English, and that the concept art is included in both the digital and physical format. The stories made me want more, wishing I had the ability to play through these sections of story as they were originally intended. The benefit of the written word, though, is that the things that need to be left unsaid can be told. No arguments can abound about what was inferred. Although I guess that’s half the fun of the fandom!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Xia ✻.

    5 broken heart stars "Yet in spite of this, I would remain with you all. To the very end.” Final Fantasy XV is not my favorite game of all time, but it has a very important place in my heart, if not the most important. I’ve been following the development of the game since 2006 when the first trailer came out, and it wasn’t called “Final Fantasy XV” yet. I waited, and waited, and when it finally released, I went straight to play it after many years of a game-slump. I remember the game having 5 broken heart stars "Yet in spite of this, I would remain with you all. To the very end.” Final Fantasy XV is not my favorite game of all time, but it has a very important place in my heart, if not the most important. I’ve been following the development of the game since 2006 when the first trailer came out, and it wasn’t called “Final Fantasy XV” yet. I waited, and waited, and when it finally released, I went straight to play it after many years of a game-slump. I remember the game having flaws, as well as the main story. A lot of things could have been done better, and still, I sobbed, laughed, got angry, and loved this tragic adventure with all my heart. So, when they cancelled the last three DLC, and this full length novel came out instead, I obviously had to read it. I went into the book thinking I was going to read just 4 short stories from different characters, and I couldn’t be more wrong. Everything is connected in a way that will leave you speechless, more if you played the game, which helped a lot with visualizing the breathtaking fights and scenarios. Reaching the final pages and seeing all the amazing concept art, left me a little sad and bitter about never seeing this in the game, but it was still satisfying. This basically contains and tells everything the game didn’t explain. A lot of missing clues, missing feelings, past stories, motivations from the characters, and the most important thing, (view spoiler)[ an ¿alternative? ending where everything ends as it should have been; happy, with Noctis, Luna, and everyone alive and laughing. (hide spoiler)] .

  5. 5 out of 5

    Eric Allen

    This fills in a lot of the blanks in the Final Fantasy XV story, and goes through what the stories of the cancelled DLC packs were going to be. The problem is that it's not terribly well written. I think at least some of the blame for that can be placed on the translation. Japanese does not translate very well to English, or so I've heard. At the end of the day, though, I enjoyed it for what it is. Although, it should be noted that if you need a 5 episode anime series, a DLC pack in addition to This fills in a lot of the blanks in the Final Fantasy XV story, and goes through what the stories of the cancelled DLC packs were going to be. The problem is that it's not terribly well written. I think at least some of the blame for that can be placed on the translation. Japanese does not translate very well to English, or so I've heard. At the end of the day, though, I enjoyed it for what it is. Although, it should be noted that if you need a 5 episode anime series, a DLC pack in addition to the three that were blatantly cut from the main game to weasel a few more bucks out of the fans, another DLC pack that explains the villain's motivation and powers, and a freaking 450 page novel to make the story of the game make sense, maybe the people in charge of the game should not be in charge of any more games in the future. I'm looking at YOU, Nomura!!!! Not the poor sap they dropped it on when Nomura failed to deliver, who had to cobble a game together out of his leavings. If you enjoyed Final Fantasy XV, and were disappointed in the cancellation of the Luna, Noctis, and Aranea DLCs, or were pretty confused by the game's story and don't mind reading a companion novel to have it explained to you, I'd say definitely pick this one up. Just be aware that the quality of the writing isn't great. It's not terrible, it's just not what I would consider professional level.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jon

    A nice conclusion. *Spoiler alert* As a fan of the game, I liked how we got to see how the dlcs would have concluded the story. I personally am very satisfied with the ending, its much like ffvii remake in that fate can be changed. My only criticism is the emphasis on defying your faith, but which I think makes sense when you realize the head of hexatheon is the God of war. Regardless, spoiler alert, I'm happy some characters know love and have babies, even if its just fanservice. A nice conclusion. *Spoiler alert* As a fan of the game, I liked how we got to see how the dlcs would have concluded the story. I personally am very satisfied with the ending, its much like ffvii remake in that fate can be changed. My only criticism is the emphasis on defying your faith, but which I think makes sense when you realize the head of hexatheon is the God of war. Regardless, spoiler alert, I'm happy some characters know love and have babies, even if its just fanservice.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ailin

    If you’ve played Final Fantasy XV, and experienced the sudden and rather lacking end of it, I’d recommend reading this book. If not, there’s not much use. Dawn of the Future does FFXV the justice it should have been dealt, but ultimately never got. The book fills plenty of blanks, clears confusion and brings out the true moral of the story - unlike what it seems in the first encountered ending of the main game. It continues the story, presenting an alternate and ‘true’ ending. I’d call it a ‘good’ o If you’ve played Final Fantasy XV, and experienced the sudden and rather lacking end of it, I’d recommend reading this book. If not, there’s not much use. Dawn of the Future does FFXV the justice it should have been dealt, but ultimately never got. The book fills plenty of blanks, clears confusion and brings out the true moral of the story - unlike what it seems in the first encountered ending of the main game. It continues the story, presenting an alternate and ‘true’ ending. I’d call it a ‘good’ one too, and the one presented in the main game the ‘bad’ one, if comparing the two. (Episode Ignis perhaps a ‘neutral’ one?) Going a bit into each section, originally intended as DLC for each character: You get the story from Ardyn’s perspective, explaining his motivations as the game’s villain, as well as how and why the grand Prophecy driving the main game plot came to be. Perhaps most excitingly, you actually get to experience Luna’s character, which was practically non-existent in the main game, despite the supposed female lead(?) Funnily, she’s written to realise her lack of personal drive, confronting it. You also get to know Noctis’ development in the Crystal, and further character development. The only lacking part for me personally was that of Aranea’s part. Reading it was like playing through Episode Gladiolus, but if you had to read through every repetetive battle in there as words on a plain page instead of at least getting to mash buttons and see pretty colours. Very combat heavy, I definitely see the text as a blueprint for a video game, that’s for sure. Not much fun to read through, though. She’s still a cool gal, don’t get me wrong. Man the FFXV would have been awesome if they completed the story as intended here. Way more complete and justified, not to mention way less confusing. Shunning the initial message of hopelessness in inescapable great prophecies and inevitable tragic destiny, in favour of choosing free will and killing an unjust god in true JRPG fashion. If you felt sad and cheated by the rushing end of FFXV, left with the burning question “why?” - give this a read.

  8. 4 out of 5

    rachael ♡

    Necessary reading for all fans of this game. It’s perfect ✨

  9. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    I really was a huge Fan of the Final Fantasy XV universe. First I would not recommend reading this book if you have not played the Game Final Fantasy XV and its four DLC Episodes. The book is written really well, the Author captured the characters personalities on point. I have got nothing bad to say about the Authors writing style. But - like 80% of the time reading this book it felt like I was reading fanfiction. I must admit, that I feel kind of betrayed by Square Enix. The first part of the book I really was a huge Fan of the Final Fantasy XV universe. First I would not recommend reading this book if you have not played the Game Final Fantasy XV and its four DLC Episodes. The book is written really well, the Author captured the characters personalities on point. I have got nothing bad to say about the Authors writing style. But - like 80% of the time reading this book it felt like I was reading fanfiction. I must admit, that I feel kind of betrayed by Square Enix. The first part of the book (which kinda tells what happened in the Ardyn DLC) is a necessity to fully understand FFXVs Story, so in my opinion it is an insolence to bring this part of the story as DLC/Book. But I can recommend this book to any fan, who also maybe wants some closure to FFXV - to me it was kinda helpful finally letting the game go. (Sorry if my english lacks at some points, it is not my first language)

  10. 4 out of 5

    Juan Gallardo Ivanovic

    True King’s Legacy After trial and error, Square Enix (S-E) has provided a satisfying ending to FF XV story, not without of some controversies and game planning decisions that were cut from main game and forthcoming DLC’s. ----- COMMENTARY MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS----- Well, some people say that DLC are exactly what we don’t need in games, as much of a game content is now expanded by this way of working. Some companies (Ubisoft, EA, among others, mainly) use this method to also increase their revenues True King’s Legacy After trial and error, Square Enix (S-E) has provided a satisfying ending to FF XV story, not without of some controversies and game planning decisions that were cut from main game and forthcoming DLC’s. ----- COMMENTARY MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS----- Well, some people say that DLC are exactly what we don’t need in games, as much of a game content is now expanded by this way of working. Some companies (Ubisoft, EA, among others, mainly) use this method to also increase their revenues by cutting some of the ideas originally planned by game developers and dump them in a following downloable content for the sake of fans and mostly, money. So, why am I speaking about DLC on this review? Because, if you don’t know it (or want to be reminded), this book contains ideas that were supposed to be added content for Final Fantasy XV, a tale of a Prince travelling the world of Eos in order to fulfill his destiny and free mankind of an ancient scourge that is plaguing the planet ifself. The chapters here match the same episodes that were intended for the Dawn of the Future DLC’s. As S-E sales’ plans did not perform as expected on the first row of content, (episodes Gladious, Ignis and Prompto) development was stopped at Episode Ardyn and the other 3 episodes were re-estructured as the present book (adding to this read Episode Ardyn with a plot twist at its end). In First Chapter, we are witnesses of the Episode Ardyn account made into novella. This is the story a kind man that sacrifices himself in order to heal people. A young Ardyn intended to be King that is deceived and ultimately betrayed by his brother Somnus, who wants to be seated as the ruler of growing kingdom of Lucis. Then we see as the Accursed is imprisoned for 2,000 years and being rescued by Niflheim empire, reaching to the year that he met Noctis. So this part of the book is basically the same as Episode Ardyn, with some expansions and a subtle change in the end to be closer to next Chapters. All Ardyn account is easily a quick read, without putting many efforts is a fun and delivers a great story. Second, we have Aranea’s Highwind account that starts in a daemon attack inside the Imperial city of Gralea and most importantly the link between her and an important character for the story: Solara Aldercapt Antiquum (late’s emperor granddaughter). Aranea later adopts the child as his own daughter. Rash and Impulsive, Sol proves to be an interesting character and major game's loss for the sake of the plot. I had a hard time reading Aranea’s story, as I did not feel that her participation (aside of meeting Sol) was of big importance. Third, we have a roller coaster account of Lunafreya, joined by an older Sol that starts very slow and with the running of pages starts to get interesting. Luna awakes 10 years after her death in Altissia, just to run into Sol and find a new calling by the God of War, Bahamut. Later she finds that the Bladekeeper’s plan is catastrophic and outsmart herself to do something to prevent it. This chapter features a forging friendship between Sol and Luna (interesting, in Spanish those words are Sun and Moon respectively) meanwhile they explore a world in a permanent night. Interestingly enough, this chapter leads the story further and proves to be fun after the initial confusion. Lastly, there was planned another view of Noctis’ story in which he will change his mind after learning that Luna is alive and Bahamut’s plan. As thing are getting worse, Noctis’ is able to deliver another solution for freeing Eos of a never-ending night and severing the fetters of Mankind. This might be the greatest loss for all FFXV’s fans on the book, as this chapter features another set of events that are far more rewarding that current ones that are in the game. Bottom line, this read is good enough to be approach by players of the original game, most of it should be read by the ones that were engaged and captivated by FFXV world. As a result of cut DLC’s still has a lot of dependency of main game, so reading it without ending FFXV is not endorsed as a lot of places, names and events are referenced in the process of reading this book. In my opinion, this work has way too great ideas for FFXV but due to some decisions were cut, I felt frustrated that some of them never saw the light. This is something to ponder, as there was a lot of pressure that this game would meet all the expectations that were generated back at 2006. Furthermore, all changes on plans and re-structures threathened this project to go into a "development limbo". It is a remainder for doing a better planning and development of games and never overpromising the features of a work-in-progress software. Hope S-E gets a better understanding of it on their next work.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Charlotte

    I... surprisingly enjoyed this book! When I started reading Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of the Future, I went in feeling skeptical. My relationship with novels based from video game series' has been rough and bumpy over the years, so I had mild expectations. I am so glad I was wrong! Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of the Future, features four stories that were supposed to be included as additional playable DLC in Final Fantasy XV: Episode Ardyn, Episode Arenea, Episode Luna, and Episode Noctis. Unfortu I... surprisingly enjoyed this book! When I started reading Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of the Future, I went in feeling skeptical. My relationship with novels based from video game series' has been rough and bumpy over the years, so I had mild expectations. I am so glad I was wrong! Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of the Future, features four stories that were supposed to be included as additional playable DLC in Final Fantasy XV: Episode Ardyn, Episode Arenea, Episode Luna, and Episode Noctis. Unfortunately, further development in Final Fantasy XV halted early, and fans (including myself), never got to experience these DLC's in game form. As much as it is shame that the development team were unable to complete and release these stories into the game, I am still grateful to have been able to read them. Each story explored a few of the characters' in Final Fantasy XV's POVs. These stories answered a lot of questions I raised about the game's main storyline, as well as introducing some neat new concepts about the lore in the world of Final Fantasy XV. While I did enjoy all four stories, the Episode Luna and Episode Noctis stories are absolute standouts. I am especially grateful that Luna got more showtime in both of these stories. She really shone through, and after what happened to her in the game's base story, she deserves everything! Arenea is also a standout character in both the Episode Arenea and Episode Luna stories. I absolutely love how she develops as a character: Arenea's intelligent and caring sides of her personality are shown, revealing a more multilayered character than expected. I was also impressed by how well these stories were translated from Japanese to English. Kudos, to Stephen Kohler for the smooth translation! As much as I was impressed with how well this book was translated, a lot of the prose in the book used rather complex adjectives and adverbs. A lot of these words I had to search up on Google, as I had rarely or never read these words. It occasionally made for a slightly clunky reading experience. Not only did Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of the Future make me learn new words (yay!), it also made me feel a little inarticulate at times. Honestly, the amount of times I had to whip up my phone and look a lot of these descriptive words up, had me feeling like a bit of a dumbass. As much as I dealt with a lot of words making me scratch my head (A LOT), I still enjoyed, and am thankful, to the team at Square Enix for releasing this book. Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of the Future gave me great closure to a game that I adored, but unfortunately stayed unfinished.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Nathalie

    Final Fantasy XV was a game and franchise I was never really interested in, but I got the game gifted to me, after which I played it and fell in love with it anyway. The game itself went through development hell, and changed stories and concepts multiple times so much that the initial trailers have nothing to do with how the actual game turned out. The story therefore, lacks a bit in some places. I do however really love the character work which makes me more easily forgive those. The game had two Final Fantasy XV was a game and franchise I was never really interested in, but I got the game gifted to me, after which I played it and fell in love with it anyway. The game itself went through development hell, and changed stories and concepts multiple times so much that the initial trailers have nothing to do with how the actual game turned out. The story therefore, lacks a bit in some places. I do however really love the character work which makes me more easily forgive those. The game had two rounds of DLC, each consisting of four episodes. Unfortunately, the second round was cut short, and only Episode Ardyn made it. This book contains what they had planned for what they never got to make. (Though it also includes the Ardyn Episode). As a fan of the game, this was super interesting to read, and it was a joy to see that it really got the character's voices right. As this novel was originally Japanese, it could have been easy to just do a straight translation instead of making it fit the English version and characters of the game. And I gotta say, getting to read Noctis' thoughts during the final battle is very much a punch in the gut. As with Episode Ignis, the story here includes an alternative ending. Another cool thing: concept art! I had to load up the file on a computer to get to really look at it all in color and to read the little notes that the development team wrote. At the end of the book, there's an entire chapter filled with cool art of things they had planned to do or were ideas that they might have done. And then for some reason there's a bunch of designs for placemats and coasters :D Very recommended if you like the game!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Collin Greenwood

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. The good: Episode Ardyn was fantastic, and it was great to see Luna get some character development in her own episode. Sol was a decently interesting character. The bad: 1) Luna doesn't know what a cell phone is? Really? Despite them being in regular use at the time of her death? Despite Noctis having one? Seriously? 2) Forget about loving reunions. This book doesn't have any. Any chance for the characters to step back for a second to breathe or say "hey I missed you" is gone. Ten years apart? Le The good: Episode Ardyn was fantastic, and it was great to see Luna get some character development in her own episode. Sol was a decently interesting character. The bad: 1) Luna doesn't know what a cell phone is? Really? Despite them being in regular use at the time of her death? Despite Noctis having one? Seriously? 2) Forget about loving reunions. This book doesn't have any. Any chance for the characters to step back for a second to breathe or say "hey I missed you" is gone. Ten years apart? Let's just brush right past that. The Ugly: 1) So... what was Bahamut's motivation, exactly? We are led to believe he "planned everything". Okay. Why? What did he stand to gain? Why manipulate everyone into sacrificing themselves? And why decide to blow up the world if they don't? It's almost nonsensical when compared to FFXV's original ending. You sacrificed yourself? Cool. The world goes on. You didn't? Welp, guess it's time to press the reset button. Bahamut, as a character, makes zero sense. 2) What was with that "revelation" that Bahamut looks like Somnus? Was it just a twist for *gasp* shock factor? What was the point? What did it even mean? 3) All the gods died because Bahamut died. Which is just typical JRPG "we don't need gods" tripe. In summary: It was nice to hear Ardyn's backstory and get closure and answers to some untold story elements. But the ending was just awful. I didn't see the need to save everyone as an ending, because to me, the idea of "we won, but at what cost" is always more interesting than a simple "we won". FFXV's ending was good because it had an element of tragedy. This removed that, and as a result, was far less emotionally impactful. Am I glad I read it? Yes. Would I read it again? No.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Eitan

    Probably is one of the best books about videogames that I have the pleasure to read. The Dawn of the Future deserved five stars, but I won't give it that rating. Why? If the game would have this story, this pov (and everything from Dawn of the Future), Final Fantasy would have been a far better videogame. This is the way that it suppose to happen and end everything! I'm not gonna make spoilers, but it is so well written that I enjoy everything, even when sometimes it feels too slow, the book know Probably is one of the best books about videogames that I have the pleasure to read. The Dawn of the Future deserved five stars, but I won't give it that rating. Why? If the game would have this story, this pov (and everything from Dawn of the Future), Final Fantasy would have been a far better videogame. This is the way that it suppose to happen and end everything! I'm not gonna make spoilers, but it is so well written that I enjoy everything, even when sometimes it feels too slow, the book knows how to give the exact information you need to understand this universe. Who the hell is Ardyn and what are his reasons behind all of this? Why Aranea didn't have more relevance when SHES IS FUCKING COOL? What are exactly the roles of Lunafreya, the Oracle, the "summons", and Noctis? It answers all of that, something that the videogames fail somehow to do it. It works as a wonderful fantasy novel, I learn a few things that I would implement to my work. But most importantly, it gives you and inside of the "chosen one quest" or how, even when you are not meant to be important, you can still save the world. Final Fantasy XV has a special place in my heart and this book deserves all the love in the world <3

  15. 4 out of 5

    On the Same Page

    This book is a companion to the Final Fantasy XV game and is meant as a replacement for the additional downloadable content they were planning but ended up not releasing. While you can technically read this without playing the game (the book starts with a summary of the game's events to bring you up to speed), I can't imagine there'll be much emotional attachment to the characters without having that experience. The book has four parts and the focus is on a different character for each one. In pa This book is a companion to the Final Fantasy XV game and is meant as a replacement for the additional downloadable content they were planning but ended up not releasing. While you can technically read this without playing the game (the book starts with a summary of the game's events to bring you up to speed), I can't imagine there'll be much emotional attachment to the characters without having that experience. The book has four parts and the focus is on a different character for each one. In part one we follow Ardyn, and this is essentially a written version of the Ardyn DLC that was released. Part two follows Ariana and fills in a gap in the game from her perspective. Part three follows Luna and Sol, a new character introduced in the book, and part four follows Noctis. The timeline no longer follows the one in the game starting from the 3rd part; before that everything is pretty compliant. There are a lot of action scenes in the book and they're extremely well-executed. Reading it feels like playing it in the game would. While I wouldn't call the prose distinctly beautiful in any way, it was very nice to read, which isn't usually my experience with game-related books. Props to both the author and the translator. The storylines of part 3 and 4 especially are pretty interesting since they explore an alternate path instead of the ending you see in the games. I enjoyed following Luna, although I would have liked a bit less wishy washy behavior from her. Noctis in the book is still Noctis with all that entails. There's even a moment where Noct literally says, "Ignis, instructions!" which was first of all, so lame in written form, but also made me miss the game. At the end of the book there's some stunning concept art that I'd love to have as prints on my wall somewhere. A solid read and one I overall enjoyed, but I would've still preferred playing it instead.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Pamela Gudobba

    Is it well written? Not particularly, but the content it provides FAR outweighs that. Knowing that this is the *true* ending to FFXV is so painful. I wish they hadn’t given up on this game, because this DLC would have fixed all of the problems people had story-wise. I’m so upset we had to get this through a book rather than through the game as they had intended.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kai

    I love it! I love learning more about Ardyn, Aranea, and Lunafreya. The stories are so great and I love the ending. Overall I love it!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jaime

    As a fan of the game, this book was absolutely amazing! A different ending of the game made the book unpredictable and introduced a couple of new characters that would've been introduced through the DLC's that were cancelled. Just loved it. I would recommend this for every Final Fantasy XV fan!! As a fan of the game, this book was absolutely amazing! A different ending of the game made the book unpredictable and introduced a couple of new characters that would've been introduced through the DLC's that were cancelled. Just loved it. I would recommend this for every Final Fantasy XV fan!!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    Hi, my name is Jessica, and I’m a FFXV-obsessed fangirl. I’d wager a guess that you’re also a fan – maybe even a super-fan – if you’re interested enough to read this review. Either that, or you’re a friend who clicked the link in partial disbelief, just to confirm that I have, in fact, come out of my self-imposed Goodreads hibernation. Hi. That title I gave myself at the start – FFXV-obsessed fangirl – is one I embrace, and wear with pride. Games, books, sound tracks, movies, animated episodes…I ha Hi, my name is Jessica, and I’m a FFXV-obsessed fangirl. I’d wager a guess that you’re also a fan – maybe even a super-fan – if you’re interested enough to read this review. Either that, or you’re a friend who clicked the link in partial disbelief, just to confirm that I have, in fact, come out of my self-imposed Goodreads hibernation. Hi. That title I gave myself at the start – FFXV-obsessed fangirl – is one I embrace, and wear with pride. Games, books, sound tracks, movies, animated episodes…I have pins and stickers and keychains and even a replica reusable Ebony can, for crying out loud. Yeah, I’m pretty far gone. So, a few things to lay out before getting into my thoughts on the episodes. First, I’m working on the assumption that anyone reading this review has played through the game at least once. That being the case, I won’t hide any plot points or references to the main game in the reviews below. I will bury any references to existing DLC, or information given outside of the games themselves, and will of course suppress spoilers to the episodes in this book. The second thing I want to say is, if you’re a fan, and are contemplating buying this book, I have two things to say. a) DO IT, you won’t be disappointed; and 2) definitely splurge on the hard cover version. I’ve heard all kinds of nonsense about the artwork not translating correctly to the e-book, and trust me, you want to be able to see the gorgeous drawings and concept art in all its lustrous, beautiful glory. Now that that’s out of the way, if you’re here for the episode reviews, feel free to skip the background, and scroll to the first title “A Savior Lost”, bolded so it’s easier to find. If you’re interested in extra background, well…don’t say you weren’t warned. I’m well over 400 hours into this world in total, and that number is still rising: watching my husband’s one and only playthrough; my own 4.5 playthroughs (one on normal, of course; my first NewGame+ was interrupted just over halfway through by the arrival of our PS5; my next real NewGame+, capping the guys at 120; and my current run, starting over from scratch). I’ve played 4 of the 5 available DLC’s, getting completionist on Ignis and Ardyn, eyeballing Gladiolus, passing on Prompto (I’m just not a shooter.) And I’ve bawled my eyes out over the course of each of those playthroughs; it was a stunned sob on my husband’s run, an I-knew-this-was-coming-but-still-how-COULD-YOU? cry on my first run, and finally a this-feels-like-my-soul’s-been-torn-out-through-my-nostrils cry on my next one. I feel for the characters, and love everything about the world, from Ardyn to Zegnautus Keep. Hell, I can honestly say that sometimes I preferred the boys to my own brothers. (Sometimes, I still do…) And yes, this book did make me cry – two of the four stories, at least. I may have slammed the book, crossed my arms, pouted a bit, and pushed the book further away from me a couple times on repeat, as well. I’m emotionfullTM, what can I say? Anyway…review! A Savior Lost (Episode Ardyn) I actually read this story before playing Episode Ardyn, the only DLC episode that was birthed into the world. It was bittersweet, because the story was so beautifully told, and the game itself was about 98% true to these pages. (view spoiler)[Except for that ending, which took me so by surprise I actually audibly gasped and twitched, and felt my eyes grow as wide as they can. (hide spoiler)] My feelings for Ardyn – already so complicated as to make me shy away from trying to define them – were sent reeling after reading this story. (view spoiler)[and after playing the episode. I can’t tell you how long it took me to ease into playing as Ardyn, fighting the Crownsguard and the Kingsglaive on the streets of Insomnia. But, once I got over that, I realized: Ardyn was bad ass and so fun to play! (hide spoiler)] You get much of his history from his own lips and the whispers of the Crystal throughout the main story, but this episode dove right into the chain of events that led to creating the Ardyn Izunia we know and sometimes love, most times hate. Add to that the concept art the production team used as inspiration – ties to the Lucius line, defining differences between Ardyn and family, introducing the Oracle lineage, and Ardyn in exile – and the effect is astounding. Just, breathtakingly astounding. And that’s only the first episode. I won’t dawdle too long on this one – it is, after all, DLC that anyone can get and play, but the other three…ah, the other three. The Beginning of the End (Episode Aranea) Fan-girl disclosure: Aranea was one of my most favorite characters – top 3, at least – and I’m not ashamed to admit that I love, love, love everything about her. If I wasn’t such a cheapskate, I’d have an Aranea action figure on my desk right now (alas, it’s hard for me to justify that kind of money on something I’d just moon over…though, I guess I could argue that that’s exactly the point of an action figure, innit?) At any rate, this was the Aranea history I didn’t know I needed, and am so happy to have. Her story – and that of Biggs and Wedge, which tickled me to no end – picks up on the heels of the events at Altissia, and plunges the reader into the aftermath of a war and the principles that drove Lady A to give up her post as Commodore of Niflheim’s Third Army Corps’ 87th Airborne Division. nerd alert The story also offers insight into Aranea’s childhood, as well as her unbreakable bonds with Biggs and Wedge (providing, along the way, surprising and fun tidbits about their personalities, and why they work so well as a team.) It also cements her strength of character and mind, as well as her incredible bravery and unyielding devotion to her country and her men. This is the shortest of the four episodes, with an abrupt ending. One minute you’re zipping along the streets of Gralea, trading verbal barbs and punches (view spoiler)[with Ardyn, who in this instant is an a-hole (hide spoiler)] , and the next you realize a great deal of time has passed, but that you won’t be privy to anything that’s changed, at least, not yet. The story does introduce a new character, who’s dropped into Aranea’s lap at the hands of a main story side character that you either loathed or tolerated (view spoiler)[I was team loathe, honestly. Loqi was just too randomly obsessed with Cor, and he’d pop up, cause a ruckus, get his ass handed to him, then slink off to lick his wounds before popping up in the oddest of places again and again…he just seemed forced on the reader. At any rate, I did find him annoying in this story, but at least he gave his life for Aranea and Sol to escape…? (hide spoiler)] , causing a few changes in the personalities and responsibilities of Aranea, Biggs and Wedge. Choosing Freedom (Episode Lunafreya) Having played the game, I can almost hear your question: How, exactly, does Luna have an episode? Well, here there be spoilers. But, for those curious, this is where the disparate storylines really start to line up and make sense. (view spoiler)[Especially the gasp-inducing ending of Episode Ardyn (hide spoiler)] (view spoiler)[We catch up with Luna ten years after Altissia, ten years after Noct is sucked into the Crystal, ten years after darkness engulfed Eos and the daemons took over. Poor Luna is ripped from her warm, semi-conscious slumber, reanimated, and unceremoniously awakened in the tomb – her “final resting place” – with no help, no light, and no clue as to what’s going on, much less why or how she was brought back. Enter the daemon who chases her from the tomb, up a hill, down a ravine, and right into the path of Sol, the child taken in by Aranea, Biggs and Wedge ten years prior. “Child” no longer, Sol is proving her worth with the Hunters, and just happens to drive a motorcycle with a side car. She also just lied to A, B and W about her whereabouts, so nobody knows where she is or that she’s been separated from her hunting group. Luna and Sol forge an uneasy – at first – alliance, with Sol filling Luna in on the last ten years, and the fate of Noct (though at that point, she can only say that he’s been missing the last ten years.) Along the way, we discover that Luna’s Oracle powers have been replaced by something far less pretty – the power to remove the Scourge from others, sucking the darkness into oneself. Sounds familiar, no? This, of course, kicks off a whole new set of doubts and fears in Sol, though she has the presence of mind to ask Cindy to let Gladio, Ignis and Prompto know that someone claiming to be the Oracle returned is in her custody. The girls build a mutual trust and respect while travelling together, which isn’t surprising. What is surprising is when we finally find out about the circumstances behind Luna’s revival and powers. Bahamut, the Draconian. We hate that guy. Turns out the Draconian has been manipulating everyone for millennia, from poor Ardyn and Aera, right on down to the newly re-animated Luna. Gentiana is able to warn Luna of the Draconian’s plans, which lights a fire in Luna’s soul – the desire to help Ardyn (say what?) and stop Bahamut on her own (I ask again, say what?) One of the more touching moments came towards the end of the story, after Luna saved Aranea from turning into a daemon herself, absorbing the Scourge and losing that much more of her human self. Sol is just barely able to restrain Aranea, stopping her from killing Luna. We’re treated to snippets of conversation between Cor, Gladio, Ignis and Aranea before Sol (and Aranea, tangentially) bust Luna out of her cell to give her a chance to finish her mission. And can I just say how much I loved seeing Umbra show up when Luna most needed him? We do not deserve dogs. (hide spoiler)] The Final Glaive (Episode Noctis) Again, having played the game, I can hear your two prevailing questions: a) How, exactly, does Noct have an episode?; and 2) wasn’t the entire Final Fantasy XV game essentially an “Episode Noctis”? I had the same questions, but now understand what the developers were doing (in addition to tearing my heart out of my chest, shoving it back in, stitching me up, then savagely re-ripping my heart out again, and again, and…well, you get the idea…) This is the story of Noct’s time in the Crystal, of him coming into the Power of Kings, and of his understanding and coming to terms with sacrifice. (view spoiler)[This is also the ending that my heart so desperately needed – the ending that lets me confidently proclaim, “I reject your reality and insert my own!” whenever my husband and I talk about the game. (hide spoiler)] We see and understand it all, from his first meeting with Bahamut, to his revelations about Ardyn’s past and own losses. It’s richly detailed and beautifully presented, allowing the reader to feel Noct’s own doubts, fears and uncertainties, and to experience his struggles with him. You see him mature into the leader he is upon exiting the Crystal, and I, at least, appreciated that transformation so much more for having been privy to his mind. Remember that book-slamming-arm-crossing-pouting moment I referred to at the beginning? (view spoiler)[This totally happened after Noct encountered Regis in the Crystal. Brutal, man. Beautiful, but still brutal. (hide spoiler)] Noct’s return to Eos in this story follows much of the path that he takes in the game, with one major exception that I personally take…well, exception…to. (view spoiler)[By inserting Sol into the game, the developers completely removed the young adult Talcott, effectively scrubbing him and his role – and his eventual confession moment with Noct – from the shared history. I adored Talcott – as both a precocious young lad and the mature young man – and hate that we lost him so that Sol could have a place in the world. (hide spoiler)] Things diverge from there, though, as this story treads a different path than what’s forced on us via the game. I don’t want to have to bury more of this under the spoilers tag, so I won’t go into too much detail, but the long-awaited reunions with Ignis, Gladio and Prompto are perfectly timed and feel comfortable, and the events leading up to and culminating in “the final battle” would have been incredible to play. I mean – it would have been tough and unrelenting, and I’m sure I would’ve cursed a few times through, but this? This is the end FFXV fans deserve. Overall impressions Happy as I am to have these stories – well-written, engaging and detailed – I am truly sad that they’ll never come to fans as DLC. Playing as Ardyn was fun for many reasons – he really was quite powerful – but more than his story and his mission, I loved romping down the streets of Insomnia, before the fall. Streets unblemished by war and daemons, streets I vaguely knew from end game. How fantastic would it be to have these stories brought to life by the original team? I know it’s not meant to be, but a fan girl can dream. Like any good “proper” story, these episodes had me laughing, crying, questioning my own sanity and left me wanting more.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Michele Reinhart

    A good ending to the Final Fantasy XV story. This really should have been the dlc that it was meant to be but this is still a really good ending to the story.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kenra

    Final Fantasy XV: Dawn of the Future is a post-game release to the video game: Final Fantasy XV that was released in 2016. So I would advise to anyone who has not played the game to do that first before reading the book. Not only because it will provide better context for the book, but also because it's just an amazing video game that I'm totally biased towards. The game's original ending was one of tragedy, and the Development Team had plans to release additional content episodically that would Final Fantasy XV: Dawn of the Future is a post-game release to the video game: Final Fantasy XV that was released in 2016. So I would advise to anyone who has not played the game to do that first before reading the book. Not only because it will provide better context for the book, but also because it's just an amazing video game that I'm totally biased towards. The game's original ending was one of tragedy, and the Development Team had plans to release additional content episodically that would ultimately lead to an alternate, possibly happier ending for our heroes. However in 2018, Square Enix announced the game director would be leaving the project and three of the episodes slated to be released were cancelled. It goes without saying that many (if not all) of the fans of Final Fantasy XV were devastated by the news - it was especially a blow for those who also waited the ten years for this game to even release (which is another story entirely). As consolation, Square Enix announced that they would release a novelization of the alternate ending, written by a member of the Development Team. It was released in Japan in 2019, but did not come to America until this very month, July 2020. I've read a small number of other novels from the Final Fantasy franchise, and I have found that many leave a lot to be desired. The writing was usually pretty basic, the stories never went into much detail. It felt like they barely delved beyond a summation of their story. It was always disappointing to read because it felt like a cheap knock-off to something that I really loved. So I was pleasantly surprised when I received Dawn of the Future and saw and felt how hefty the book was. The design itself is beautiful - the cover honestly makes me melt every time I see Noctis and Luna together (and King Regis and Ravus on the back looking after their family? Immediate tears). The writing was surprisingly good. The first part covers Episode Ardyn, where the antagonist's backstory is revealed). It is tragic and I felt the best writing occurred in this particular segment. The second part covers Episode Aranea - a side character who works for the Empire and finds a young girl in the wreckage of the Empire falling. This section was my least favorite, but it was a great segue into the next part which was Episode Luna. Luna is revived to stop the evil that is happening in the world and she meets a new companion to help her along her journey. In the film, Luna came off as self-sufficient, and confident. In the game, she was given very little screen time and appeared far more docile and soft than she did in the film. The book was more accurate to the game version of Luna, but it still felt stiff at times. She definitely grew on me more over time. The final episode is Episode Noctis - where the story concludes with he and his friends fighting to defy their destines and banish the darkness from their world. Personally, when I compare the original ending and this alternate ending, I find both endings to be beautiful. One written with the purpose of Noctis growing up and sacrificing himself as the True King of Lucis for the salvation of his world; and the other ending allowing Noctis to fight for what he believes, staving off the expectations and fates that were placed upon him and remaining alongside the people he loves. Overall, I was pleased with the book. The writing was more carefully put together and I felt like I was given the ending that we all wanted for our favorite characters - except Ravus (but that's also a conversation for another time). I definitely teared up when he, Gladio, Ignis and Prompto were reunited, and also on the final page with the closing words from Regis. A piece of advice to any readers: it was a lot more fun when I read it to the soundtrack from the video game. The music that plays at the end of the game during Noctic's battle with Ardyn and beyond still felt powerful and poignant as I was reading the new ending in the book. It was an interesting experiment that really paid off.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Craig

    I've been a bit of a Final Fantasy fan since I was young. I've played most of the games now, including FFXV. I enjoyed the game, and was disappointed when the remaining DLC was cancelled. When I found out it was being turned into a novel, I was pleased to finally see how it ended. I wasn't disappointed! It's been translated from Japanese, but it isn't incredibly obvious which is the sign of a good translation. The story was interesting, and has me even more disappointed that the DLC was cancelled I've been a bit of a Final Fantasy fan since I was young. I've played most of the games now, including FFXV. I enjoyed the game, and was disappointed when the remaining DLC was cancelled. When I found out it was being turned into a novel, I was pleased to finally see how it ended. I wasn't disappointed! It's been translated from Japanese, but it isn't incredibly obvious which is the sign of a good translation. The story was interesting, and has me even more disappointed that the DLC was cancelled, but they sound like they would've been fun! They also expanded some of the characters nicely, and gave the game a better ending. If you've played FFXV and didn't think the ending was absolutely perfect, I'd highly recommend reading this. If you haven't played it, or if you thought the ending was perfect and shouldn't be touched, then this book isn't really for you.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Alger Law

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. This is a book I highly recommend for people who've played FFXV and found themselves incredibly underwhelmed by its narrative and ending. Outside of the final two chapters being an alternate ending to the latest entry in the franchise as of the posting of this review, I could actually see the Aranea's chapter actually being solidified into canon, especially with the introduction of Sol. That being said, I still found some issues with the way the last chapter was written. I personally, enjoyed the This is a book I highly recommend for people who've played FFXV and found themselves incredibly underwhelmed by its narrative and ending. Outside of the final two chapters being an alternate ending to the latest entry in the franchise as of the posting of this review, I could actually see the Aranea's chapter actually being solidified into canon, especially with the introduction of Sol. That being said, I still found some issues with the way the last chapter was written. I personally, enjoyed the canonical end of XV to the alternative of the Dawn of the Future. Because it brought greater meaning to the two running themes of XV, Sacrifice and Brotherhood. *SPOILERS AHEAD* The whole idea how Lunafreyawas used as a sort of catalyst for Bahamut's evil scheme seemed and its descriptions of her turning into some Deus Ex Machina conduit for Teraflare seemed incredibly out of character for XV. The way the Kingsglaive and the hunters decided on how to deal with Luna's sudden appearance and her daemonic appearance seemed incredibly out of character, especially with the 3 'brothers' of Noctis. Ardyn was written incredibly well in this book, although I wished there was less flamboyance and sarcasm in his dialogue and more emotion displayed at the final chapter. It would have been a great way to show Ardyn's humanity that continues to struggle against he scourge. *END OF SPOILERS* Aside of the mentioned grievances I've had with the story, I genuinely loved it overall. A great way to expand on previously lackluster yet potentially incredible characters like Ardyn, Aranea and Lunafreya.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Zac Clark

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. If you’re reading this you’re probably aware that FFXV has had it’s fair share of criticism, and that it’s story “could have been better, but showed a lot of promise”. I agree with that, but I also adored FFXV for what it was and had an absolute blast with it. However, I didn’t really touch the game after beating it initially. To this day I haven’t played Episode Gladio, Prompto, Ignis, or Ardyn, but I know jist of each, and I’d like to get back to XV one day. At the time of finishing the game tho If you’re reading this you’re probably aware that FFXV has had it’s fair share of criticism, and that it’s story “could have been better, but showed a lot of promise”. I agree with that, but I also adored FFXV for what it was and had an absolute blast with it. However, I didn’t really touch the game after beating it initially. To this day I haven’t played Episode Gladio, Prompto, Ignis, or Ardyn, but I know jist of each, and I’d like to get back to XV one day. At the time of finishing the game though I just couldn’t stop thinking about how I wanted more from this game, which seemed to have so much more to offer. This book? This is more. This is the ending we all really wanted, and I’m glad that even though the dlc was ultimately canceled Square Enix found some way to offer it to fans. I do have some criticisms though: - It would have been more interesting to see Luna & Noctis interpret the history they were able to see as caused by an ultimately incompetent god and choose to combat him because of that instead of it being as simple as “omg he’s going to destroy us all so we have to fight him”. - I wish Aranea had a larger role in the “Final Glauber” (as I was lead to believe she would by the concept art at the front of the book). The entire time I couldn’t help but think how useful a dragoon would be in an aerial fight against dragon beings, but alas. Overall this book is worth checking out if you enjoyed FFXV and want a happier ending than what was given in the vanilla release.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Venesa

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Major spoiler alert This book is so well made and gorgeous ngl and I was so excited to read it but honestly I was let down with the story. They really slapped us with "they got married and lived happily ever after" bullshit like really... I literally love this game so much because the ending is so unexpected. I always say I hate the ending cause noct deserved better and he did... And he got that good ending in the dlc secret ending. What was the point of this book... For luna?! Don't get me wrong Major spoiler alert This book is so well made and gorgeous ngl and I was so excited to read it but honestly I was let down with the story. They really slapped us with "they got married and lived happily ever after" bullshit like really... I literally love this game so much because the ending is so unexpected. I always say I hate the ending cause noct deserved better and he did... And he got that good ending in the dlc secret ending. What was the point of this book... For luna?! Don't get me wrong I love Luna and yes she deserved better too and l love her interactions with the new character Sol în this phew. Sol and luna be girlfriends fr fr. But I'm so disappointed they kept pushing the "Luna and noct are in love despite only playing as children and haven't seen each other since" bullshit. There's no chemistry at all. Whenever they call each other beloved I roll my eyes like yooo AND DONT GET ME STARTED on how they literally cut out nocts reunion with the bros... THE WHOLE GAME IS ABOUT THE BROMANCE AND THE BEST PART OF IT IS THEIR RELATIONSHIP AND U HAD SUCH A GOOD OPPORTUNITY TO HAVE THE BROOOOS SAVE NOCT BUT NOOOOOOO they're barely in it!!! Absolutely crap I've seen fanfics write better alternative endings. Luna and noct should have a sibling relationship that's it. Instead this book was boooorrring next

  26. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Bartoszek

    I was so disappointed when Episodes Aranea, Lunafreya, and Noctis were cancelled. But this book has provided the stories in their stead, and is worth the read. The stories are each well-written and descriptive. They are full of information, answering many questions that were never directly explained in the actual game. It also draws on many references within the game itself, including features players may have overlooked or forgotten, until you see it in the book and go 'oh yeah!' Obviously Episod I was so disappointed when Episodes Aranea, Lunafreya, and Noctis were cancelled. But this book has provided the stories in their stead, and is worth the read. The stories are each well-written and descriptive. They are full of information, answering many questions that were never directly explained in the actual game. It also draws on many references within the game itself, including features players may have overlooked or forgotten, until you see it in the book and go 'oh yeah!' Obviously Episode Ardyn was made, but with the remaining short stories you can see just how the game devs had planned for the DLC to go. Not just in the storytelling, but in how the characters fought and developed, down to the penultimate fights that conclude the stories. The characterisation was spot on and you could hear the character's voices and personalities behind each of their words. The stories were so well-written that I would have loved to have the other episodes, or even the game itself, in book form to read. Definitely a must if you loved the game and want to know what the untold stories are like!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Deanna Troy

    Oh My God. I went into this book with high expectations. Everything I've read this year has disappointed me in some way -- The Rise of Skywalker novelisation turned out to be a bland transcript of the film, my uni books read like I was chewing on cardboard. I've been waiting for The Dawn of the Future to come out since its English release was announced. And then it was delayed, and delayed again. Part of me started to lose hope. But then... it finally arrived in the mail. (Because, you know, COVI Oh My God. I went into this book with high expectations. Everything I've read this year has disappointed me in some way -- The Rise of Skywalker novelisation turned out to be a bland transcript of the film, my uni books read like I was chewing on cardboard. I've been waiting for The Dawn of the Future to come out since its English release was announced. And then it was delayed, and delayed again. Part of me started to lose hope. But then... it finally arrived in the mail. (Because, you know, COVID-19 happened to be a thing.) Final Fantasy XV: The Dawn of the Future does not disappoint. In fact, I was so over the moon, I finished this book in three days. It's not what I expected it to be; I'd been hoping for more involvement with the game's supporting main characters. But what I got instead was magical. So damn magical. The more I read, the more I experienced the DLCs that gamers missed out on -- because that's what this book was meant to be: DLCs, that were cancelled. If you haven't read this book, you're missing out. Read it. Please. I beg of you.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kristin

    As much as I love FFXV, after reading this I have to agree with the majority of the gamer community that if you need this much DLC, plus an anime, and extra books to explain everything and try to patch holes and fix your story, then you should probably stop and rethink your entire storyline...instead of trying to milk it for a cash grab. The very last story should have been in the original game as the canon ending. There was no reason to break it up into so many different DLC (then short stories As much as I love FFXV, after reading this I have to agree with the majority of the gamer community that if you need this much DLC, plus an anime, and extra books to explain everything and try to patch holes and fix your story, then you should probably stop and rethink your entire storyline...instead of trying to milk it for a cash grab. The very last story should have been in the original game as the canon ending. There was no reason to break it up into so many different DLC (then short stories when the DLC was canceled), most of this could easily have been added to the original game or even explained away with a few extra paragraphs of lines from the characters involved explaining what they were doing. It really didn't need an entire $15-$20 episode dedicated to it. Loved the last two stories. Which again should have been the original game and the original ending.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Pamela Kalimukwa

    I am torn over how I feel about this book, I both love it and hate it. We'll start with the love, I think the story, or the concept of it, is really good. I wouldn't call it well thought through though. (view spoiler)[The twist with Ardyn's refusal of his destiny was an interesting one, though I don't feel it should have carried the weight it did. Bahamut could have still left things as they were and I believe Noctis would still have defeated Ardyn, there was no reason to believe Noctis was now i I am torn over how I feel about this book, I both love it and hate it. We'll start with the love, I think the story, or the concept of it, is really good. I wouldn't call it well thought through though. (view spoiler)[The twist with Ardyn's refusal of his destiny was an interesting one, though I don't feel it should have carried the weight it did. Bahamut could have still left things as they were and I believe Noctis would still have defeated Ardyn, there was no reason to believe Noctis was now incapable of fulfilling his life's calling i.e. sacrificing himself to defeat the Accursed. Which brings us to the next issue, the twist on making Bahamut the true villain both makes sense and doesn't make sense. On one hand we've fought Bahamut before, felling gods is nothing new to Final Fantasy, and we all know Ardyn isn't exactly the big bad we thought he was, after learning of his past in the anime and in Episode Ardyn we discover he really is just another victim, so if he isn't the villain who else but Bahamut? But on the other hand in FFXV the main game Bahamut was never portrayed as anything but an all knowing divine God, mightiest of the six, who had stirred events from time foretold to drive events to the ultimate culmination of the chosen True King eliminating the scourge that plagued the star. It's what we laboured for for hours in the game, its what the other 4 (Ifrit being indisposed) of the gods helped us achieve throughout, it's what the game concluded on, its what we were made to believe. So to turn that on its head the way they did, suddenly talking of how Bahamut had intended to destroy the world during the War of Old, was honestly weird and misplaced. I've read backstory on FFXV, watched the anime(s), played the whole game, watched the movie, played all the DLC's and never did I ever hear such a thing mentioned. It was simply dropped into the book over 200 pages in. I can accept Bahamut being the villain but not like this, it came out of nowhere, like an after thought. It so clearly was not the intended plan. (hide spoiler)] All that said I do like the direction, just not the execution. I think the story portrayed in Dawn of the Future could possibly be better than the main games actual ending (maybe?). With this information the main game basically becomes an ending where the bad guys get away with everything, glorified as good (Somnus and Bahamut) while the victim of their machinations is painted as evil and banished (Ardyn). Though I am not entirely sure because the book is so poorly written. It relies far too heavily on prior knowledge to pretty much the entire world of Eos and story of FFXV, and beyond that the writing, grammar, sentence construction is not great, descriptions are next to non existent. I pity anyone who tries to read this book without having experienced all the other aspects of the story. Perhaps if it had actually been made into a game it would have turned out better, especially that final battle would have benefited greatly from the flashy scenes we've grown to expect from final fantasy games, but Square really should just stick to their day job and keep making games, books are not their forte. All in all the book has delivered on 2 things that I have always loved about FFXV, first being a world that is so detailed you can almost think it happened, with strong characters like Noctis and his bros, Ardyn who I have grown to love, and even Lunafreya was fleshed out better in this book than in the game. I wanna say we didn't get enough of Ignis, Gladio and Prompto and I was urked that they skipped the reunion and Noctis went straight for Insomnia, but we got so much bro love in the game I honestly feel no need to complain, I love these guys so much and with all the love in the main game I don't really feel cheated. And secondly the characters got the ending I think they deserved, the game ending always left me feeling a bit empty. (view spoiler)[ Especially Ardyn's end, ultimately he died in both endings but this time it was his choice and I think he deserved that much. And the fact that Noctis didn't die at all. (hide spoiler)] To me this is the true ending of Final Fantasy XV, the ending we all deserved, but we deserved it in game. There are some questions that none of the installments have successfully answered. 1. Where exactly did the Starscourge come from? At one point it was mentioned that it came from a meteor from Ifrit, but Ifrit himself was infected by it and controlled so that's kind of out? And sometimes it seems to be some kind of divine punishment from Bahamut, the fact that he can give people the gift to control it and he used it to charge Teraflare just confuses things all the more. People seem to have just settled that it's an alien parasite. 2. Why did the Gods choose Ardyn only for the crystal to reject him? Didn't they know? Did they just find it funny? Getting their shits and giggles from it? Its never made sense to me. In conclusion, it feels like an incomplete project that Square keep throwing to us in little scraps and convoluted pieces that don't always fit well together. As much as I love getting more content, I agree with people who say if you need a whole game, 2 anime, a movie, 4 DLCs and a whole novel to tell a story properly then you are doing something wrong. (view spoiler)[ PS was Ravus the only character they didn't think deserved a happier ending? He was barely mentioned and I assume still died and became a deamon like the original? Poor Ravus. (hide spoiler)]

  30. 5 out of 5

    Rebeca F.

    It's so hard to write a review about Dawn of the future, because it's very much like the game, so I think it's impossible to review it merely considering its literary merits, specially if you are a fan of the game. So first I have to say I am, a fan of the game, in spite of the bumpy road, the shattered expectations and the endless wait with messy results, overall, I think Final Fantasy XV is a wonderful creation, and I mean this considering everything that was released to mend the original game It's so hard to write a review about Dawn of the future, because it's very much like the game, so I think it's impossible to review it merely considering its literary merits, specially if you are a fan of the game. So first I have to say I am, a fan of the game, in spite of the bumpy road, the shattered expectations and the endless wait with messy results, overall, I think Final Fantasy XV is a wonderful creation, and I mean this considering everything that was released to mend the original game's lacks; if you saw the movie, OVAs, played the side games, the original game, watched the animated shorts and played every DLC, then the whole universe and story is amazing. If you just played the main game, well, you're missing on a lot and you'll obviously feel the story's a mess and won't even understand what's really going on. You'll probably still feel attached to it, because of how long it is, not the main story, of course, but the open world with all the side quests, endless dungeons and so on and on. I think it took me over a year to finish it and I played it exclusively during that time, all my focus on it. But the thing is, FFXV is a very tragic game. The main game's ending was really sad and devastating, it felt quite hopeless, even if at the end we see dawn again. I thought it was beautiful and powerful anyway, I'm one of the few that actually loved that ending, in spite of how sad it was. However, my feelings changed when I played Episode Ardyn, which I adored wholeheartedly but unavoidably made me feel utterly frustrated and conflicted about the ending and the whole "real mastermind" plot behind the game. I loved Ardyn even on the main game, but after learning all his story and how tragic it was and how he's the worst victim of the whole plot yet couldn't even attempt to defy the fate bestowed on him, I felt really upset. I mean, even a battle with the "real antagonist" on episode Ardyn would've sufficed to release some of the anger, but we didn't even get a chance, no matter how futile it might have been. I had that thorn on my side since then, thus Dawn of the future was deeply satisfying because we did manage to see that resistance against the destiny bestowed by the god and we actually got that final battle. Dawn of the future was also satisfying regarding Luna. This was a character that really interested me in the main game and it was so sad that we never really got any character development or background story about her and couldn't even play as her at all, it's like she was only an idealized image on Noctis' mind. And we always saw her through him. Now finally Dawn of the future shows us the real Lunafreya. What bothers me, as it probably does anyone who played the game, is that the book totally changes the ending, so it's kind of a weird experience. I thought they might somehow merge both endings, make it work somehow, but nope. So, Dawn of the future focuses on Episode Ardyn (which we already played) and the other DLC's that were cancelled: Aranea, Luna and Noctis. It's a gorgeous book with original art and since some of the images are said to be the inspiration since the team started planning the game, it hints at the fact that this was supposed to be, not just the content of the episodes, but the original plot and ending of the main game, which they somehow altered totally along the way. And that's just weird. The first chapter was a bit repetitive, as it's Episode Ardyn and that was the latests release, and my favorite, so it was still pretty fresh on my mind. Then we get Aranea during the fall of Gralea and are even introduced to a new character that didn't even make it to the game. Then Luna, who wakes up just shortly before Noctis returns after missing for 10 years. And at this point I still thought they might merge the story with the one in the game, because maybe Luna did get to the Citadel to Ardyn before Noct in the game and we just didn't see it, I don't really know what I was thinking... But then Noctis returns after being trapped in the crystal for 10 years, same as the game, but he's not picked up by the kiddo who liked the cactuar figures (just can't remember the name now) all grown up, but by that new character that never showed up in the game. He doesn't meet his friends in Hammerhead and just goes straight to face Ardyn and search for Luna and from then on it's quite a satisfactory ending, but completely different from the game, and although it was really cool to see the fall of the real antagonist, which I'd been craving so bad since Episode Ardyn, it lacked the tragic depth of the original. Still, it was an awesome ride and I'm sure any fan of the game will love it. Be prepared though, because now you'll feel so frustrated about those DLCs that were cancelled because it would've been so amazing to get this as playable content instead, or at least besides, the book.

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