The Final Fantasy 1-3 Pixel Remasters released on Steam last week, and fans have already found several ways to fix the game’s … unappealing font.
The first three Pixel Remasters – new versions of the first Final Fantasy games, released on Steam – immediately sparked controversy for their choice of font. While the games retain the pixel art style of the originals, the typeface used is much more modern and weirdly condensed. Fortunately, the fan community is stepping in to help in a number of ways.
As Aeana pointed out on Twitter (below), it’s a straightforward process to swap the in-game font for another – many praising the pixel-based font from Final Fantasy Mystic Quest. The mod, which can be downloaded directly here, is much more pleasing to the eye and a more natural typeface suited to the games in question.
For people who want a pixelated font, there is now one based on the Mystic Quest font. https://t.co/K0fCDGXx29 pic.twitter.com/FHR5Di74Xx
– Aeana (@Aeana) August 1, 2021
Once the mod is downloaded, it is relatively easy to install. The downloaded zip folder contains two fonts, one in English (font_en) and another in Japanese (font_ja). To install them, you’ll first need to navigate to the in-game directory for the specific Pixel Remaster you want to install the mod on. Once there, you can search for the font file you want to change and then simply replace it with your downloaded copy. It may be useful to make a backup of the font file before overwriting it, just for added security.
Alternatively, fans have found a way to fix the font issue that doesn’t require you to download files at all. As reported by the RPG site, it is possible to resolve the issue by disabling the Japanese and English font files in the game. The Japanese language option for the game uses a much more readable font than its English counterpart. Changing these folders essentially means that you are forcing the game’s English subtitles to use the game’s preinstalled Japanese font type (which includes a full set of Latin characters).
To exchange the font files, you must first log into Steam and access the local files for the copy of the game you are modifying. This can be found by right clicking on the game in your library, selecting properties, followed by local files, and browsing.
From there you’ll need to look under FINAL FANTASY_Data, then StreamingAssets – this is the folder where each of the font files you’ll need to access are stored. Within that folder, you are looking for four files: font-en.bundle, font_en.manifest, font-ja.bundle, and font_ja.manifest. Cut and paste the font_en.bundle and font_en.manifest files elsewhere on your computer where they can serve as a backup – we recommend an easily marked folder or your desktop for easy access.
Copy the font_ja.bundle and font_ja.manifest files before pasting them into the folder with your other backups. At this point, it is important to follow the instructions carefully because an error could prevent the game from loading. In the StreamingAssets folder, rename font_ja.bundle and font_ja.manifest by replacing the “ja” in each line with “en” for them. two file names. Then copy and paste the original backup copies of font_ja.bundle and font_ja.manifest from your backup folder to the StreamingAssets folder. After that you should then be able to change the language settings in the game menu to English and the font will be significantly better.
Screenshots from the Final Fantasy Pixel Remaster series
Of course, this is only a fix for the PC version of the game, as the currently released mobile versions cannot be changed. Square Enix has said that remasters could arrive on other platforms with sufficient demand, but there probably won’t be any way to change that font either – we’ll have to hope the developers hear that demand as well.
If you’re currently playing Final Fantasy Pixel Remasters, why not check out this article detailing 7 Things You (Probably) Didn’t Know About Final Fantasy 1-3.
Jared Moore is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow it on Twitter.
This story originally stated that the mobile versions had not yet been released and had been updated.