I"m not very far into the game so I have not gotten access to everything yet. One of the things I do like is the "level up" system (I call it that since there are no levels per say). After each battle you get CP points which are used to move yourself along your ability grid. It looks sort of like the sphere grid in FFX, but functions more like the AP points in FFXII (IMO). I say this because unlike the s-level system in FFX where you have to fight a bunch of enemy just to get 1 S-level, you just accumulate CP and use it to learn what you want on the grid (i like the AP system in FFXII). Sorry if that isn't making much sense, thats the best way I can explain the "level up" system.
In terms of the battle system, fights can be very frantic and fast paced. If you do not setup your party correctly you can get beaten by bosses pretty fast. At the current time I cannot change party members and have to used whichever characters are assigned to the party (this is basically due to them being required by the story). You are only in control of your leader and your other 2 characters are AI controlled. If your leader dies, its an instant game over, which I found kind of disappointing since I had 2 perfectly good characters still alive.
I have had access to 4 different optima's you can make your characters. Attacker, Blaster, Defender, and Healer. Attacker makes your character commands/attacks physical. If you are set to Blaster, your character's commands are magic spells basically (fire, thunder etc). Defender basically makes that character just stand in a defensive stance, they take less damage and I could be mistaken, but I think the enemy focus their attack on that person in that stance (basically they are a tank). and healer speaks for itself.
Graphically the game is beautiful. I can't describe it any other way.
That's my brief take on the game based on how much I've played so far. Hopefully I'll get to beat it this week since after work tomorrow I am off the rest of the week yay.
Thanks for this. Just one question, it sounds like the levelling system is based on the s-grid in FFX but allows for far more customisation and freedom in the abilities you can choose for each character. So I could decide to specialise a random character in healing for example, or do they have a set pre-determined range of abilities for each character?