I have never played any Final Fantasy games and I have read mixed reviews about it. Can someone please explain to me what I would be getting myself into? My boyfriend, who swears by Zelda, can't stand Final Fantasy and thinks that I would hate it. I have played and fell IN LOVE with Puzzle Quest for the DS. I know that is a RPG, but what does a more in depth RPG like Final Fantasy have in store for me?
The good FF games bring about the combination of an excellent story with an ensemble cast, typically (but not always, e.g. FF VI) portrayed using cutting edge visual and audio technology, with a moderately difficult but enjoyable battle system requiring a thoughtful balance of things like abilities, items, weapons, armors, et cetera to create successful battle campaigns. A lot of people love this sort of game play, and a lot of people hate it. A game like Zelda involves puzzle solving. Final Fantasy games require an individual to create strategies in order to defeat difficult enemies in order to advance the story line. Typically, the battles blend into the story line quite smoothly. All that being said, some of the FF games are easier than others, and some of the games are better made than others. If you're interested in trying one out, look at the reviews and pick one that is highly rated by both the consumers and the critics.
Dreggor Gade gives a good answer, but I would also want to add that if you're considering getting one for the DS, then try FFIV first. The reason is that it's a more typical game for the series, and it's also widely considered one of the very best, not just in the series but of all console RPGs ever made. For the DS FFIV got a new engine to update it to be about the same technological quality of FFVII. The game, if you have the active battle system set to wait, is very easy (if it's turned to active and the time is set so the game goes very fast it can be exceedingly difficult) and that might be a good thing if you've never played a Final Fantasy game before.
The reason I have been a long time fan of the series (been following it since 1988) is because with the most advanced games (SNES generation and up which started with FFIV) it's almost like reading an interactive book. More recently it's a combination of reading an interactive book and watching movies. The game itself is enjoyable enough, but when you get great music, a strong story, as well as cool movies to watch during the more pivotal scenes in the game, it becomes a very unique media experience. FFIV:DS will give you a very strong and entertaining show of what the Final Fantasy series has to offer.
Personally, I do not care for the complete overhaul of these classic Final Fantasy games. Final Fantasy III-VI were not ment to be 3D games. (I know they will make V and VI in 3D as well) It is not the same game in my opinion. It's the same for the Dragon Quest games for the DS. If you want a true Final Fantasy experience and you have a PS1 or PS2 then I would highly recommend getting Final Fantasy Origins or Final Fantasy Chronicles. If you want a challenge then go for Chronicles. It has the hard version of Final Fantasy IV.