For all its pomp and grandeur, Final Fantasy is so often at its best when it’s being a little bit dumb. And it doesn’t really get much dumber than the Moogle Chocobo carnival that’s just launched as a free update to Final Fantasy 15. A standalone of sorts that’s unlocked once players have reached Altissia, the carnival repurposes the Venetian city as a colourful parade of mini-games that offer enough diversions to while away an hour or two.
Square Enix has certainly put the elbow grease in to make it worthwhile, and there’s a surprising amount to see and do here. Is any of it actually that good? I’m not wholly convinced – the Chocobo racing is cute but throwaway, a shooting range and Cactaur-themed game of whackamole are equally slight and the only activities that last more than a couple of minutes are extended treasure hunts that are as torturous as they are titillating – but I’ve had a lovely time in the carnival nevertheless.
As the owner of two moogle plushies and someone who’s constantly scouring Etsy for a moogle outfit for my nine month old daughter, I was always likely to be a pushover, but there’s a goofiness to the whole thing that I think anyone can get onboard with. Within seconds of entering the carnival I was dancing alongside a man in a moogle suit; shortly after, I was warping from point to point in pursuit of a child’s rogue balloons.