You missed FInal Fantasy Legend for the GBC, which was a funny as hell because it was so crap I couldn't play it for longer than 2 minutes, and that's altogether, not how much at a time.
Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children only came about because the game was so popular, and it's overrated because it was the first Final Fantasy game most people played, including me, so yah, FFVII-great music and epic storyline.
I don't see how people can't know about the spere grid. I mean "Recieved 8 Power Spheres" along with all those tutorials and the number of times you go into the menu (even to check items/use cure outside of battle) gives it away.
Before I say anything I have played every game since Final Fantasy VII, apart from FFXI
I personally dislike Final Fantasy XII and I might as well right why.
The new battle system seems repetitive. You just whatch the same command over and over, with cure or esuna every now and again. You can't even run from enemies anymore. The stupid "elementals" are annoying too. Someone told me they weren't agressive, and one started attacking me because I cast cura!
Tactics seemed to be a major part of the battles in erlier Final Fantasy games (when at low levels), but that seems to have gone here, partly because you are forced to do a lot of leveling up just to get enough Gil and LP to equip better weapons/
The ATB style was great in the older Final Fantasy Games (although I didn't like the ATB style in FFX-2, I would have preffered a CTB style in that). Tales of Symphonia (GameCube) is still the game with the greatest battle system for me.
Customization & Licenses
I'm sure you've all had a time in the game when you've got a really powerful new weapon, get ready to equip it, and find that you can't because you haven't got the right "licence", it sounded like a good idea at the time, but with 1LP per enemy, it's not that helpful. Also, with the licences, everyone can do everything. You could make Basch a deidcated healer for example. I miss the old Final Fantasies like IX and VII. In IX, the way everyone had certain skills that only they could learn was really good. Even the way of being able to use certain weapons to activate certain skills (sorta like KHII) until you gain enough AP for the was good. At first I thought that getting only AP for bosses was stupid, but now it all makes sense. One of the things that really annoys me is how people say the Soul Cage (disk 2, near the end) is the hardest boss in the game. It has zombie status, so use life or a pheonix down on it. In Final Fantasy VII, while anyone could do most things, only certain people could weild the weapon types (unlike XII), and certain people were suited to magic, while others were suited to physical attacks.
The epic tales of Final Fantasy VII and VIII are gone from this game, (IX was okay, but doesn't match the standards of VII and VIII). The characters seem to hav almost no reason to go trying to stop a war. Vann's only reason is Reks, and that's only touched upon slightly towards the beginning. He even, forgives Basch right away near enough. Panelo doesn't even have a reason from what I can see. The characters also seem to have no storyline involvement at all, nor does there seem to be much character devlopment. Compare that to Final Fantasy VII where a main character dies, then a whole load (okay 4 isin't a load but...) of massive monsters created by the planet threaten the planet (ironic huh?) and over all that there is a threat that a giant metor will hit the planet and wipe everyone out. They save the whoole planet! Cloud's progression is good too, how he talks with his Jenova cells in his dreams (that's how I saw it) and Sephiroth's control over him is quite cool too. In Final Fantasy XII I just thought, "oh, running an erand for yet another person, great".
The only real sidequest in Final Fantasy XII (to me) is the hunts. Which adds to the battle system I hate so much. It's also annoying that you can't even find the petitioner sometimes. In Final Fantasy VII, there was a wider range of sidequests, from chocobo breeding/racing to digging for burried treasure. Of course there were sidequests that involved fights too, but I enjoed the challenge of them fights in Final Fantasy VII.
What happened to Nobuo? Owning the "Final Fantasy VII Original Sound Track", I'm quite a fan of Nobuo's music, I know the tune from every location in Final Fantasy VII, and most of them by name. From "Tifa's Theme", and "Final Fantasy VII's Main Theme" (FFVII) to "You're not Alone" (FFIX), I have remembered pretty much every tune in Final Fantasy. None of the songs in Final Fantasy XII are memorable, I'm trying to remember the music for the Sandsea now, and all I can think of is the Hyrule Field music for The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess.
The only thing I do like about the game. Although I do slightly miss the sprites in older Final Fantasy Games, I can say that this is the nicest looking Final Fantasy ever. When I first played Final Fantasy X (three years after release) they really impresssed me, and still do today, along with Zelda and Final Fantasy XII. But, graphics mean nothing if they forget to put a game on the disk.
Anyway, if the Final Fantasy series keeps up like this, Square Enix are going to loose a fan. Unless the keep up the good work with Kingdom Hearts and make another kick-*** storyline like the one in Final Fantasy VII or VIII.
Thanks for reading my rants. I would like to see other peoples opinions on Final Fantasy XII.