Impressions of Dissidia Duodecim Prologus
Despite its enormous name, PSP's Dissidia Final Fantasy Duodecim 012 Prologus is quite short, but it contains enough content to keep any Final Fantasy fan happy until they're ready to buy the main game.
The DLC, which was released and playable before the game, allows you to play “The Twelfth Cycle” within Chapter 0, titled “Treachery of the Gods”. This scenario has you play as a level 20 Lightning from Final Fantasy XIII, who is a newcomer to the Dissidia series, with the Warrior of Light as her assist character.
Lightning narrates the scenario’s cutscene before she joins Jecht and Kain under Cosmos, the Goddess of Harmony’s, summon. They’ve been chosen for Cosmos' fight against Chaos, the God of Discord, but the three don’t yet trust one another. This is an interesting new element – a big difference from the unconditional friendship of the characters in the first Dissidia game. The Warrior of Light arrives to tell the other three that the enemy is near and they confront Garland and the Emperor, who mock Cosmos’ warriors for waiting until attacked.
Lightning has a variety of moves from FFXIII, and can even Paradigm Shift by pressing R+L. Her magic attack changes when you switch between Commando, Ravager, or Medic mode, and she can even heal her bravery count when a medic. She’s fast and agile, but her HP damage doesn’t heal in the Prologus-only story mission.
Calling your assisting character is done by holding the L shoulder button and pressing O. It works much like a Marvel Vs. Capcom game: the character will show up, use a special, and disappear. They’re only available as a meter builds. Once used, the meter depletes and you’ll have to wait until they’re available again.
Being a prequel, Dissidia Final Fantasy Duodecim has Cosmos and Chaos’ teams set up differently than Dissidia, like Jecht being on the good guys’ side and Cloud on the same side as Sephiroth (though Cloud empathizes with Cosmos’ team because he cares about some of its members).
Prologus gives you four battles to fight in Story Mode: Garland & the Emperor, the Emperor & Ultimecia, Sephiroth & Cloud of Darkness, and Cloud & Golbez. There’s also an Arcade Mode that lets you play as any of these characters in a set of 5 battles on normal or 30 on hard.
This prequel to a prequel is essentially a paid demo, but for $2.99 you get a 30-60 minute extra story scenario, arcade mode, and you unlock Aeris as an assist character for the main game. I feel like I’ve gotten my money’s worth.