The third Final Fantasy game was released for the Nintendo Famicom in Japan in 1990. It wasn’t officially translated into English until many years after its initial release, so a variety of fan translations exist online, and their quality varies wildly. The TransTeam translation I found to be pretty good although the font and text alignment isn’t perfect.
The game starts with you naming four characters, and these form the basis of your party. Combat begins almost immediately and is turn-based. Thankfully it’s easy to get to grips with, if a little slow, and is quite challenging from the get-go.
One really cool thing about Final Fantasy III is that you can change the “jobs” of your party members. Choose between Fighter, Monk, Black Wizard, White Wizard, Red Wizard, and general purpose “Onion Kid” (don’t ask me…). You can change jobs at any time although you have to unequip everything you’re carrying to do it, because certain jobs can only use certain equipment. There’s a thoughtful “Remove All” option in the menu, but it’s still a pain to do.
Final Fantasy III reminds me of the classic Final Fantasy Legend on the black and white Game Boy, with its limited dialogue, ‘chibi’ character style and sentimental, warbley music. Except this time it’s in colour. And it looks and sounds lovely even to this day.
Final Fantasy III was the last of the Famicom Final Fantasy games – the baton was then taken by the Super Nintendo for the next three releases.