Lightning Returns opens with some beautiful cutscenes. Square still knows how to make some gorgeous pre-rendered stuff.
After that the game almost immediately becomes incomprehensible. Throwing around a bunch of terms that don't have any relevance to a new player. Final Fantasy XIII had this problem too, but in different ways. Lightning Returns uses words that we know but in ways that are obvious different in the game. God, Chaos, Ark, Savior. They're used in a specific way in-game that doesn't actually map to the real-world terms.
I actually hate that they're using these characters from FFXIII but they aren't actually the same characters at all. They've changed so much that they might as well have been wiped clean and replaced with all new characters. Snow is a king or something. Lightning calls herself a savior un-ironically. Hope is here too but he's some kind of coordinator for Lightning's adventures and he's young again... even though he was older in FFXIII-2. It's all just kind of weird.
The battle system is the most interesting part of the game. It falls somewhere between the Dress Sphere's of FFX-2 and the Paradigms of FFXIII. You can have multiple sets of equipment that you change between in the middle of battle. They are essentially different classes. The cool part is that each set has it's own ATB bar that charges up while you're using the other sets. Battles consist of constantly switching sets and choosing from the abilities within those sets. It's fast and really fun.
With a new set of characters and a different story I think I could have bought into this game. I like the battle system, the gear system, and the idea of an open world exploratory Final Fantasy game. But at this point I can't deal with these characters and storyline from FFXIII anymore. They jumped the shark after the first game and it's just been incomprehensible since then.
I'm done with Lightning Returns after only a few hours. I'm glad I tried it and got to see it's redeeming features but I won't be coming back to it.