Final Fantasy Adventure

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North American box art.

Final Fantasy Adventure is an action adventure role-playing video game developed and published by Square for the Game Boy on 1991-06-28. Despite the title associating it to the Final Fantasy series, the game is entirely unrelated and actually the first game in the Mana series.


After becoming a huge fan of Secret of Mana in the mid 1990s, I learned it was actually a sequel to this game. Not owning a Game Boy, I never played this game while it was still popular. I ended up playing it through on an emulator in 2016. It was a fun game, but nothing compared to the sequel.


I have beat the game while primarily focusing on power.


  • Overall: 5/10
  • Best Version: Game Boy

— This section contains spoilers! —


  • Over all, I enjoyed the game, I just found it a little too long.
  • Kazuko Shibuya's graphics are wonderful for a Game Boy game, and the designers created a lot of the monster templates that would later be used in Secret of Mana and future games in the series. Having played Secret of Mana first, it was fun to see so many monsters and bosses that I recognized.
  • Kenji Ito's music is hummable and fitting for the game's theme.
  • I kind of like the idea of letting the player choose which direction they want to take their stats during a level-up, allowing them to focus on a particular stats over others. This gives the game more replay because you can try again going just power, or just magic, etc.
  • The experience points are doled out enough to ensure the player raises levels at a constant rate provided they continue to progress along the story line.


  • Squaresoft should be ashamed at using the dishonest tactic of naming a game after an unrelated, but popular, franchise in order to increase sales.
  • While the monsters change graphically, there appears to only be a handful of AIs used for all of them.
  • While the overworld has nice unique sections, the dungeon graphics are very homogeneous throughout the entire game making it repetitive.
  • Some of the dungeon puzzles were very unintuitive and required me to check a FAQ. One switch near the end required you to have the rusty sword equipped before you could activate it, without any hint that it was necessary. And, since the rust sword is such a weak weapon, it is unlikely you would ever be using it.
  • I find the inventory system to be too limited. Sure, it's necessary to prevent the player from amassing 10,000 cures, but I would have preferred a simple cap on each item like Secret of Mana, rather than limit the slots. You end up running out of keys and mattocks requiring you to backtrack too often. And if you fill up on them, you get the "can't carry" message too often from chests.
  • The hit detection is a little off, so you get hit by enemies when it doesn't seem like they should be able to hit you. It also seemed like my attacks often shot out in the wrong direction every so often when I was close to an enemy.
  • It would have been nice if the programmers didn't make you consume items when you can't use them. I accidentally wasted a lot of items because of this.
  • Despite the game being about a legendary sword, the sword is actually one of the worst weapons throughout the game.
  • Some of the weapons were too similar. The spear is just like the whip, but with less reach, the sickle is just a weaker morning star, the axe is a better sword, etc.
  • Gold was pretty useless. My first time through I had maxed out my gold before reaching the end of the game. This was probably due to me having to backtrack a few times because I didn't know the map all that well, but it would have been nice to be able to do something with all that gold.


  • The fact that you interact with NPCs and objects by walking into them was a terrible design choice that causes no end of frustration throughout the game. NPCs routinely get in the way, treasure chests block your path, etc. Even with the limited buttons of the Game Boy, there is no reason a button shouldn't have been used for talking and opening chests.


Box Art

None of the boxes have impressive art or even give you much of an idea of what the game will be about. They're just the logo with a sword.







Although the game doesn't contain credits, its popularity over the years has led to many fans to dig around and figure out who was involved in creating the game. I'm still amazed that such an amazing game was created with such a limited staff.

Roles Staff
Director Koichi Ishii
Lead Programmer Satoru Yoshieda
Programmer Masaaki Saito
Music and Sound Kenji Ito
Lead Artist Kazuko Shibuya
Assistant Artist Hiromi Ito
Writer Yoshinori Kitase
Map Designer Goro Ohashi
English Translator Kaoru Moriyama
French Translator Sylvie Bomstein (as Sylvia Bomstein)
German Translators Wolfgang Ebert, Susanne Pohlmann


Language Native Transliteration Translation
English (America) Final Fantasy Adventure
English (Europe) Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest
Japanese 聖剣伝説 ~ファイナルファンタジー外伝~ Seiken Densetsu ~Fainaru Fantaji Gaiden~ Holy Sword Legend ~Final Fantasy Side Story~


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