5 Things We Loved About Final Fantasy XV: Episode Prompto

Final Fantasy XV and Episode Prompto spoilers ahead! You’ve been warned.
  • Playstation 4
  • Xbox One
  • Action
  • RPG
Episode Prompto
Episode Prompto Square Enix

Final Fantasy XV’s latest DLC, Episode Prompto, hit consoles yesterday (after some annoying delays for PlayStation Season Pass holders). If you weren’t too impressed by anything other than the abs on display in Episode Gladiolus, you’re in luck! Prompto’s mini-adventure is pretty darn fun, changing up the core gameplay of FFXV, adding snowy locales to explore and shedding new light on its starring character. Here's a few of our favorite things about the latest DLC -- SPOILERS AHEAD!

Young Prompto's salad horror
Young Prompto's salad horror Square Enix

Lots of chubby young Prompto!

The second episode of the Brotherhood anime focuses on Prompto’s adolescence in Insomnia, revealing another side to the upbeat and energetic guy we meet in FFXV. Shy and overweight, he seeks to befriend the aloof Prince Noctis, but falls flat on his face in the schoolyard introducing himself. So he resolves to drop some pounds before approaching the heir of Lucis again.

Episode Prompto reminds us that insecure boy remains an integral part of who Prompto is, through flashbacks and anxious flights of imagination featuring his younger self. As he says at one point in the DLC, his greatest fear is “One day, they’d find out who I really was, and they wouldn’t want me anymore.” Although players know differently, that’s basically what he assumes has happened to him as the DLC begins. Without becoming overdone or sappy, these glimpses into Prompto’s mind and past make it hard not to feel for the guy.

Aranea in Episode Prompto
Aranea in Episode Prompto Square Enix


We get more time with Aranea in Episode Prompto than we did with Cor in Episode Gladiolus, and putting this sweet n’ sour duo on a solo mission together was a twist we didn’t see coming. While her dialogue is mostly devoted to (gruffly) helping Prompto sort through his issues, we also get some insight into her motivations for defecting from the empire, which wasn’t entirely clear in the Tenebrae section of the main game.

Plus, Aranea proves extremely helpful in some of the more chaotic shootouts in this DLC. This is especially true if you suck at shooters (like me), and realize a little late that you’ve used too many of your healing items. She also, like Prompto, gets a very cool new outfit that makes me wish the FFXV crew spent more time in frostier climes.

Prompto took care of an injured Pryna in Brotherhood.
Prompto took care of an injured Pryna in Brotherhood. Square Enix

Pryna reappears!

Hey, it’s that other adorable dog that belongs to Luna! In Brotherhood, Chunkster Prompto looked after Pryna when he found the pup injured after school one day. Once Pryna returned to Tenebrae, the handkerchief wrapped around the healed wound led Luna and Gentiana to reach out to Prompto about Noctis, sparking a bromance for the ages.

Although Pryna basically just leads you from place to place to advance the story, it’s nice to see the FFXV creators haven’t completely forgotten about Luna’s other dog, because it never actually appears in the main game. It’s a small thing, but it bodes well for the team’s commitment to drawing threads between the different spokes of the FFXV universe that can sometimes feel a bit disconnected.

Ignis totally would have voted for Bernie
Ignis totally would have voted for Bernie Square Enix

Clever references and witty writing

One of the unexpected pleasures of Final Fantasy XV and its DLC thus far has been the wit and humor of its dialogue. As seen above, the post-release addition of Chapter 13 Verse 2 had a rather timely reference to “alternative facts” ( video via Eurogamer ), and while Episode Prompto doesn’t wade into contemporary politics, a few sharp moments stand out.

The scene where Prompto confronts Verstael in the Magitek Laboratory delivers a little fanservice for lovers of old school Final Fantasy games. The facility seems to be a spiffed-up version of Vector’s Magitek Research Facility in FFVI, and Prompto’s sort-of papa takes a page or two from FFVII’s villainous Dr. Hojo. He even calls Prompto “a failed experiment,” the same insult that sends Cloud over the edge.

When Prompto tries to burn off his barcode at the campfire, he says “out, damn’d spot!” This is a line from Macbeth, a literal reference to the difficulty of removing a bloodstain, as well as an allegory for the impossibility of getting rid of a stain upon one’s conscience or soul.

But Episode Prompto’s not all about woe and impostor syndrome. When you clear the DLC and unlock Prompto’s Tundra Attire to use in the main game, the description says, “Change into your new outfit and let the cold know it never bothered you anyway!” Of course Prompto would be a fan of Frozen.

Ardyn, up to no good, as ever.
Ardyn, up to no good, as ever. Square Enix

Judicious use of Ardyn

Given the events that led up to Episode Prompto, it seemed as though this entire DLC would focus on Prompto and Ardyn. While the villainous chancellor is, of course, lurking on the periphery and tugging the strings, he doesn’t get as much screentime here as one might expect.

This was a wise choice. After all, anyone who’s played through FFXV has already spent hours wandering around Gralea, alone and friendless, with Ardyn’s taunts ringing in their ears. While a DLC focusing on his past could be interesting, there’s little he could do in Episode Prompto that would show players another side of his character. Everything we knew to expect in this DLC -- namely, that Ardyn captures Prompto and imprisons him in Gralea -- happens at the tail end, even as the credits scroll. So instead, we get to spend more time on a snowmobile with best girl Aranea. Whee!

What did you think of Episode Prompto? What kind of FFXV DLC would you like to see in the future? Let us know in the comments!

FFXV Episode Prompto
Episode Prompto Confirms He's More Of A Bad-Ass Than Gladio
The first Final Fantasy XV DLC to ground us in a strong sense of character, the uncanny power of Prompto’s solo mechanics give us a whole new understanding of Noctis’ best pal.
  • Sheds light on confusing plot points from the main game
  • Fantastic music
  • Fun gameplay mechanics
  • Aiming various guns can be cumbersome
  • Prompto's special techniques don't do much
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