Square Enix began as two separate companies: Squaresoft and Enix in Japan. They both specialized in similar offerings, such as the Final Fantasy series on Square’s side and Dragon Quest on Enix’s side. Their merger in 2003 cemented the publisher Square Enix as one of the most incredible in the world, especially considering the best Square Enix games.
No other company makes RPGs and immersive worlds like Square Enix does. The best Square Enix games of all time ranked below showcase only the finest of their releases over the last several decades in gaming and what every fan should check out. This best Square Enix games list only includes one version of each game.
1. Final Fantasy XIV
If players ignore the incredible success story and comeback this MMORPG had, they will find one of the best games of all time, not just in Square Enix’s repertoire. While it features thousands of players in a world at once together, it also works so well for solo players.
Its brilliant sense of freedom lets players create whatever they want and play as any class anytime. It also includes terrific dungeons, boss battles in the form of trials, the best crafting in a game ever, and so much endless customization.
But above all else, it somehow even features the best story in Square Enix’s history, which the publisher already reigns supreme in. The Shadowbringers expansion, in particular, offers a near-masterpiece level of quality from start to finish, but others also do pretty well.
2. Final Fantasy VI
Final Fantasy VI represents the cream of the crop when it comes to traditional, single-player JRPGs. It features an unbelievable cast, only matched by the next game in the series, shocking twists, a gorgeous world, and one of the most recognizable villains in gaming history.
3. Chrono Trigger
This game alone spawned entire fans of Square Enix, and for a good reason. It features some of the most dramatic and tactical turn-based combat in the franchise. The adventure through time, space, and various eras feels more comprehensive than almost any other game in existence.
4. Final Fantasy 7 Remake
This remake took only a single slice of one of the greatest games of all time and made it into an entire game. It surprises around every corner and features some of the most memorable characters in gaming, like Cloud and Aerith. All the while, it finds the right balance between turn-based and action combat.
5. Final Fantasy 12: The Zodiac Age
Final Fantasy 12 feels like the execution of what a game in this series means. It has everything from the Moogles to Chocobos to a political storyline, but its strongest point remains its exceptional world, which feels only matched by the best Square Enix games on this list.
6. Dragon Quest XI S
Every game in the Dragon Quest franchise to come after this one has a lot to live up to. It may be the most recent in the series, but it also represents the strongest iteration yet. Its 3D art style ages so well and matches with the over-the-top characters and turn-based action.
Despite its release on the original PlayStation, this unforgettable turn-based Square Enix game boasted beautiful 2D characters from a bygone era. It features one of the most extensive and surprising stories in Square’s history, and it needs a return in the near future.
8. Final Fantasy IV
The fourth release from this beloved franchise took the series in its proper direction. It showcased some of the most colorful and intriguing worlds on the SNES. The game also proved the fantastic potential of storytelling in games with its redemptive tale of Cecil.
9. Star Ocean: The Second Story R
This unique remake of the already best game in the sci-fi JRPG series made it even better. Its rendition of the classic HD-2D art style from the Octopath series looks fantastic against the 3D backgrounds. Its quality-of-life features raise the bar for Square Enix action games.
10. Octopath Traveler 2
Players have the chance to pick one of eight protagonists to play at the start of this game. They then get to explore a massive and stunning world with the best visual style out of any Square Enix title and check out a massive experience that spans eight surprising and heart-breaking storylines.
11. Nier: Automata
This sequel expanded upon everything its underrated predecessor did and brought it to new heights in terms of popularity worldwide. The story of Androids 9S and 2B throughout their parallel realities pairs so well with the flashy and speedy hack-and-slash gameplay.
12. Star Ocean: Till the End of Time
Developer tri-Ace took this star exploration franchise to great heights with its PS2 release. The full 3D graphics and the massive game allowed for numerous worlds to explore, each with its own rich styles and cities. But it also excelled in the story department.
13. Dragon Quest 8
The switch to 3D on the PlayStation 2 for this series boosted it through the ranks quite well. This eighth mainline game features a timeless cel-shaded style and gameplay only beaten by one other game in the entire series.
14. Kingdom Hearts 2
Disney and Square Enix came together to create one of the most unforgettable action RPGs in the history of gaming. The tale of Sora, Riku, and Kairi has its best moments, both in story and gameplay, throughout this lengthy adventure.
Its gorgeous graphics show its versatility in the player’s journeys to brilliant Disney properties like Hercules, The Lion King, and Aladdin.
15. Dragon Quest V
The fifth mainline entry in Enix’s genre-defining franchise stands out as the strongest of the old-school releases. It perfects the turn-based combat and offers a unique storyline in which players have the chance to shape their future.
16. Super Mario RPG
Square developed a turn-based Mario RPG spin-off game for the SNES. This monumental game paved the way for an entire sub-series in Nintendo’s history, but the original pays homage to the franchise and its selection of lovable characters.
17. Chrono Cross: The Radical Dreamers Edition
This pseudo-sequel always felt overshadowed by its predecessor, Chrono Trigger. Even still, it has some excellent turn-based combat and one of the largest casts of intriguing characters in Square’s history. This version represents the best way to experience it with its helpful quality-of-life features.
No matter which version of this game players check out, they will find one of the most gut-wrenching and immersive post-apocalyptic fantasy worlds. Its rich storyline and deep action combat paved the way for its successor, but it still reigns supreme in its series for writing.
Square Enix showed its creativity with this game, which blends elements of farming simulation games like Story of Seasons and Stardew Valley with Final Fantasy-style action combat and story. While it masters none of these aspects, it doesn’t need to since it does them all well.
20. Infinite Undiscovery
This underrated Xbox 360-exclusive JRPG from Square Enix features solid action gameplay and a breadth of party members. But its true success comes from one of the finest storylines in the publisher’s storied career, which later games like Final Fantasy XVI copied.
21. Final Fantasy
It all started here for Squaresoft and eventually Square Enix as a whole. Though other games released from the company before this one, Final Fantasy set the publisher on a path to success and away from possible failure. It also represents one of the most straightforward journeys in the JRPG behemoth franchise.
22. Paranormasight: The Seven Mysteries of Honjo
Square Enix delved into the visual novel and adventure genre with this surprising game. It features some of the spookiest and scariest environments and moments players will find in a video game. It couples this with an excellent storyline full of intense twists and turns.
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Experience: Cody Perez started his career as a journalist and creative writer in the tech and gaming spaces in 2011 while in the middle of high school. Since then, he has produced thousands of high-quality, researched articles for some of the largest entertainment websites in the world, including IGN, Destructoid, Siliconera, Digital Trends, DotEsports, and many more. He also was the lead editor at GameRevolution, growing the site to reach its consistent, historical peak of 8 million MUV the entire time he worked there. Cody also helped launch various successful sites, such as VGR (2 million MUV in a year), POKUniverse, and RPGInformer.
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