I noticed exactly why Final Fantasy is a Legend in gaming and why this can be seen in the most successful series like uncharted,witcher, Nier(yes i consider this a cult classic)
Its not because of the story told, though that does have alot to contribute to it.
Its because the story and gameplay were one and the same, The experiences you had in the story was played in your hands giving variety in a game while telling you a story.
Because each FF story is differen't with differen't heroes, differen't hurdles it provided differen't experience...
no Final Fantasy ever Sucked as RPG/JRPG, FF13 didn't suck but it was one of the lesser exciting ones in the series. And this is because it lacked freedom/gameplay variety therefore relying HEAVILY on 2 aspects, Combat and Story. Since the combat changed(like every FF) at a very very slow pace people payed attention critically to something that changed.. the cutscenes, which is always a risky gamble.
FF has never been 100% relied on the the story/cutscenes, Yes the story is crucial but to constantly have that and no variety in gameplay support it? ofcourse people are going to see the wrong in these stories. Imagine having FF7's game be like FF13 but still retained its story(yeah not pretty right?) but because it had so much variety in gameplay moving along WITH the story we just played while the story played making it an amazing AND DIFFEREN'T experience.
FF13 had what? walking, battle, walking, cutscene, walking, battle...whats "unique" about this games gameplay in the FF genre??? why didn't we summon odin and ride odin as a mini game, why didn't we have sneaking sections aren't we fugitives. FFXV has sneaking into a niflheim base, battle a titan head on God of War way, Driving with the Regalia Dodging Explosions(E3 2016 trailer)., Warping from ship to ship, 3rd person shooting etc
Its not the story that makes FF special, its the Gameplay moving WITH that story of adventure that makes it so unique and special each entry, If FF13 had such variety in gameplay instead of walking FF13 would of been a GREAT FF entry because even if the story sucked at least you got a great and unique gameplay experience.
This is what Tabata means by "The story and gameplay being one and the same" your PLAYING and epic, your dodging debree with your comrades while a city crumbles, your sneaking into the base with your comrades to avoid detection, your warping to an airship to take it down with your comrades, your trying to sruvive while titan comes at you, your trying to fight that titan while an army intervenes....your PLAYING an epic not watching one.
Final Fantasy XV will be a massive success..why? because its bringing BACK that experience...and if you look at games LIKE uncharted 4 and Witcher 3 youll notice the variety in gameplay going along WITH that story.
Final Fantasy Is the only series that gave that constant difference in gameplay, story and worlds that each title is more conclusive then trilogies we have now.
It didn't help that FF13 also had a trilogy that spanned a whole console generation.
Some of you may agree, some disagree and thats fine...just wanted to say share with the forum fam.
THIS is why Final Fantasy is a legend in my eyes and why FFXV will be amazing, Can't wait for the day we all play this game:)