Final Fantasy V by Chris Kohler

$ 4.95

Release Date: October 24, 2017
176 pages
ISBN 13: 978-1-940535-18-0

When Final Fantasy V was released for the Japanese Super Famicom in 1992, the fantasy role-playing game was an instant hit, selling two million copies in the first two months alone. But the game was dubbed "too hardcore" for a Western audience and was not released outside Japan.

That didn't stop a teenage Chris Kohler from tracking down Final Fantasy V. The young RPG fan got a Japanese copy of the game, used it to teach himself Japanese, and with the help of some internet companions created the first-ever comprehensive English-language FAQ of the game.

Now the acclaimed author of Power-Up and an editor at Kotaku, Kohler is revisiting the game that started his career in games journalism. Based on new, original interviews with Final Fantasy V's director, Hironobu Sakaguchi, as well as previously untranslated interviews with the rest of the development team, Kohler's book weaves history and criticism to examine one of the Final Fantasy series's greatest and most overlooked titles.

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​Chris Kohler is the author of Power-Up: How Japanese Video Games Gave the World an Extra Life, and the founding editor of Game|Life, the Webby-nominated video game section of WIRED. He is currently Features Editor of Kotaku, and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.


"Superb. Worth reading for any JRPG fan." - Jason Schreier, author of Blood, Sweat, and Pixels

“Chris Kohler, one of the most recognizable names in the retro gaming scene, penned this fantastic dive into one of the best Final Fantasy games.” - IGN

"A fascinating look into what makes Final Fantasy V so special!" - Peter Tieryas, author of The United States of Japan

“A high-level treasure for JRPG fans, as well as anyone interested in how Japanese pop culture has been translated, localized, and interpreted by a global audience.” - Kathryn Hemmann, Japanese Lit

"An angle on Final Fantasy V and its legacy that really no one else could give. [...] The game is awesome and the book about its history and legacy is just as grand." - Nintendo World Report

"I highly recommend this book, because of the peculiar effect it has, for it describes Kohler’s personal and winding relationship with the game through the present in terms of change, a change in Final Fantasy, in people, in the world, and therefore this book has implications beyond an individual experience with a singular video game." - Final Fantasy Network

"Entertaining and relatable [...] packed with information even the most diehard FF fan will find eye-opening." - RF Generation

“FF partisans, proud otakus, and casual RPG fans alike will find much to reward their time with this excellent retrospective.” - The Well-Red Mage

"If you love Final Fantasy V, if you've never played FF5, if you're interested in FF5, try it, read it. I highly recommend it." - Super Nerd Pals

"[Kohler] digs into this complex subject with great enthusiasm, and explains to the reader through accessible, readable, enjoyable language that never waters itself down. It is apparent in every sentence that Kohler cares." - Ace of Geeks

Retronauts episode on Final Fantasy V, featuring Chris Kohler

Excerpt: Kotaku

More Reviews: Goodreads

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