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Old 18th September 2007, 11:49 PM   #1 (permalink)
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The Final Fantasy Series Thread

Okay, I said I would do it, to avoid hijacking other threads with my incessant Final Fantasy related babbling, so here it is. Here is a place where you can ramble to your hearts' content about anything you like connected to this hugely popular and successful RPG series. Which of the FF games have you played? Which was your favourite? What did you like, and what did you not like about them? Did you complete the games comprehensively (killing everything, including the optional bosses, getting all the best items and equipment)? How do you play the games, do you over-level yourself before moving on to the next section, or do you race through to the end in order to get the best challenge out of the final boss? Favourite characters? Favourite fights/bosses? FMV sequences? Any old battle stories (did I tell you about the first time I fought Ruby Weapon? ).

Anything else you'd care to mention?

Have you seen the movie Advent Children? Did you like it? Did you even think The Spirits Within was a 'proper' FF movie? Are you looking forward to the myriad forthcoming releases (about which Lenny can tell you more than me, I'm sure)?

I have played the following: FFVI; FFVII; FFVIII; FFIX; FFX; FFXII

My friend has got hold of the Anthology version of FFIV and FFV for PS, so I hope to have a go at them soon. Has anyone played them?

I have no desire to play FFX-II. Come on, is that really a FF game? Changing dresses? Am I just not in touch with my feminine side? I wouldn't mind having a go at the MMORPG, FFXI, but even if I could afford it, I think it would be a baad idea...

My favourite is FFVII, by a mile. IMO, it has an unbelievably good story, and it's structured to keep you absorbed through to the very end. In pure battle terms, though, FFX is my favourite. The Battle Arena fights, and the Dark Aeon fights, are the biggest challenge out of any of the games I have played.

The only thing I would ask is that you try and avoid story spoilers, since it wouldn't be fair to all those who haven't yet played all the games.

Is that it? Did I miss something? The thread is yours.
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Old 19th September 2007, 12:10 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

I'm glad there's a thread for all things Final Fantasy (being a big fan myself). I think I've just about played every FF game released on PSone and PS2 (including FFX-2, although it wasn't as good) - with the exception of the online one, and loved just about all of them. I'm with Sephiroth on this one, though, my favourite has to be FFVII.

I'm heavily biased, as it was one of the first games I ever bought for the original playstation (I still have the original game, too), but I just loved the story, the characters, the materia system (yes, I know I'm odd) and the music. I still think that this game has one of the best soundtracks of its day. I'll play it through occasionally on the PS2 for nostalgia every now and again, too.

Advent Children was a great follow up, and I was glad to see that they'd kept most of the original music for it, too. The Cloud-Kadaj fight has the original Jenova music, and as for One Winged Angel...Well, what can I say?

I played Dirge of Cerberus a little while ago, but whilst it was good to get the backstory to Vincent it took me a while to get used to the change in format (ie, standard RPG to FPS). I haven't unlocked all of the bonus features yet, probably because I keep getting sidetracked by other games. I'd love to play the other prequel games, too.

I guess my other favourite out of the FF series would be FFVI. I loved the amount of characters in the game, and the storyline was excellent, in my opinion. Mind you, I loved the challenge of Omega Weapon in FFVIII. Not quite the same level of satisfaction as beating Emerald or Ruby Weapon, but still pretty good.

That said, I've recently finished playing through FFXII, and it seems that the series is still going strong. I'm of two minds about a remake of FFVII for the PS3, though. The original has too much charm in those naive, blocky graphics. That's not to say that I wouldn't love to play it, though.
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Old 19th September 2007, 12:26 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

Talysia - I think your right about the FFVII remake. To many people just want a graphical update rather than new content, yet if it were made like that then fans would complain that there were no new additions. I think I would also be hard to add things that did not affect the story and yet not feel empty - like a new 100 level dungeon,
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Old 19th September 2007, 12:28 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

No, no, I loved the materia system too! Hated the junction system in VIII.

And like you, Talysia, FFVII was the first of the series I played, so it's not surprising that I totally agree with you. The music....I could go on all day about the music, I listen to the soundtrack all the time! Nobuo Uematsu is a genius, and I really think the games have lost something now that they're not using him (I found the music in FFXII to be very bland by comparison).

I'm hoping to pick up a copy of Dirge on the cheap soon. It will be strange, but I have to play it. What did you think of its story?

Omega Weapon was a cool fight, definitely. And all the work you had to do to get down to it...at the Deep Sea Deposit...

I also agree that VI has the best storyline after VII. I keep thinking how amazing that would look if it was made now, but like you, I think it would lose some of its charm if remade...

I have mixed feelings about FFXII; on one hand I really enjoyed playing it, and although I miss the old ATB battle system, the new one feels the same and its integration into the world is genius. On the other hand, I have a few gripes about it. My biggest issue was with the storyline, which, without saying anything specific, seemed very lightweight and rather short (when you subtract all the time you spent doing other stuff). I completed this game by accident. I just never even thought that I could be at the end already, and then suddenly it was over.

[edit] Overread, I have had the same thoughts regarding a remake. In some ways, I don't think I would like it. But I would play it.
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Old 19th September 2007, 08:13 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

I quite liked Dirge of Cerberus. The storyline drew me more to the game than the actual style/type of game (ordinarily, I don't play FPS. Old school/normal RPGs all the way) and even though it's a bit short it did keep me interested.

Without giving too much of the storyline away, it was good to see Vincent's story/history being told. The truth behind his past and his connection to Lucrecia and Hojo was revealed, as was the truth behind his transformations and Chaos. Interestingly enough, Omega weapon makes an appearance, too.

It was also good to see Reeve's new face and his having a bit more presence in the game (although you do get to play as Cait Sith on one occasion. Playing a FPS as a small mechanical cat is interesting). Some of the locations are new - one chapter is set in Edge city, for example - but some old favourites are there, too - the train graveyard and the Shinra mansion. The graphics are great, and the cutscenes are as good as some of the Advent Children scenes. It's not a game I could play over and over, but as a fan of the story I'm keeping hold of it.

I thought I was the only one who thought FFXII was a bit light on story. Half the time, it felt like I was doing so many subquests (well, it felt like they were) that the main gist of the story was lost until the end. I don't think Vayne rates much as a FF villain, either. Still, maybe another playthrough will reveal bits and pieces that I missed.

I'd love to see how they'd go about remaking VI, although I'm happy with the cgi and new scenes they added to the playstation version. For the first time, it looked like the artwork of Yoshitaka Amano had been used as a base for the actual cgi graphics in the game. (On a side note, I found a picture of Amano's concept art of Sephiroth - and it looks like they kept that one fairly accurate, too.)

Perhaps I'm just being old fashioned, but maybe they shouldn't remake the older games. Whilst I'm not against seeing them again, especially for a new generation, I think they should concentrate on making the next few releases in the series better. Graphically, they're at the top of their game, but if they could make a new game that could rival the early ones in story, then I think they'd have an even bigger success.

This thread has made me all nostalgic now! I might have to dig out the game and play it through again.
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Old 19th September 2007, 09:04 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

I've played the following:
FFI (not completed (NC))
FFII NC
FFIV NC (but I got very close to the end, was just highly underlevelled)
FFV (NC, as above)
FFVII C
FFVIII C
FFIX C
FFX C
FFX-2 C
FFXII C

FFI: plot not required. Basically there are 4 crystals, each carried by a good guy who wander around doing goodly deeds. That's the 'plot'. On the plus side, you get to choose what each character (I use the term loosely) will be from six classes, and their names. It's got a certain charm, and I got quite far into it. It's also surprisingly difficult, and money is very tight. The lack of any character development or coherent plot makes it less than great though.
3/10

FFII was a bit dull, to be honest. I'll include my view for completeness, but I only played an hour or two. The story is ok, though stereotypical (evil empire overruns peaceful kingdom etc), and your job is to help the kingdom become free again. I couldn't get into it.
2/10

FFIV is great. The main character is properly developed, his best friend is properly developed, the little girl he rescues is a fully fledged character. The storyline is good bordering on great. Although the graphics (as for V) are clearly dated, they're still quite charming and you can see what's what. This may be my favourite FF... I really should go back and finish it. The only downside is combat. Turns are (I think) random, ATB not being introduced until V and skills are gained at preset levels.
9/10

FFV has perhaps the best system of skills I've come across in FF, with the fabled Job system. Basically, every character can choose a Job, and over time they learn skills specific to that Job (such as using axes if you're a berserker). They can then use one learnt skill whilst occupying a different Job (so a Knight could use axes if the player had learnt that skill). Simple, fun and allows for good strategy (combining white magic with a Knight or suchlike). A decent villain, a good storyline and great gameplay.
8/10

FFVII was great. Ok, so the characters look like the designer was on acid at the time, but that's one of the few gripes I have with it. Sephiroth was a great villain, the storyline was good (and relevant with its nuclear parallels), the gameplay was solid and the chocobo breeding sidequest was great fun. The ending was excellent.
9/10

FFVIII. I wish they'd thought more about the battle system. Using Draw 14 times to get enough spells to boost stats (meaning when you cast them your stats fall...) was just irritating, then infuriating. Interesting idea to go for a kind of love story, which I thought was done reasonably well. Seifer was a rubbish villain though, and Ultimecia's appearance seemed to come out of nowhere. I also found the Laguna episodes time-consuming for little return: why not just use cutscenes? However, the GF ability to refine items into other, better items, and Triple Triad was a cool game.
7/10

FFIX. I quite enjoyed this. The villainous transvestite should've been, well, better. Characters were either ok or good (Vivi in particular was excellent), and the Pandemonium harpsichord music was great. Gameplay was also very good, and the synthesis shops were (I think) the first time I'd come across the item-combining idea, used again in FFXII and Dragon Quest VIII.
8/10

FFX had great graphics, a decent storyline (though the 'boss' wasn't to my liking at all), nice gameplay and decent sidequests. However, Tidus voice drove me literally insane. After I recovered from total madness, I finished the game (ending could've been better). Pretty good, despite the sound of a seal pup being machine-gunned to death being used as the main character's voice.
8/10

FFX-2 is interesting...I just wish they hadn't made it so damn girly. With a slightly more traditional storyline and party it could've actually been a top rpg. As it is the storyline lets it down. The dress-spheres work pretty well with the combat system and gameplay's good. Using mandatory and voluntary missions to determine the ending is pretty innovative, and the learning skills through doing actions wearing a given sphere harks back to V. Rikku's hairstyle was better in FFX though.
7.5/10

XII was poorer than it should have been. The graphics (cutscenes aside) could've been better, voice-acting was generally good except for Vaan (who also had the most angular sixpack this side of a 16-bits). Character development was generally pants. I really liked the judges and that side of the storyline, but they should've had more of that.The battle system was very good, though perhaps the licence points were given away too easily. Most of the character seemed of little relevance or interest, particularly Vaan and Penelo. I did enjoy the Hunt sidequest though, even though Phantasy Star IV did it first, about 15 years ago.
8/10

From that, I reckon that old school games (excepting the earliest editions) generally had better plots, because they couldn't rely on swanky graphics or complex gameplay.
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Old 19th September 2007, 02:00 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

No one's mentioned Final Fantasy Tactics, has anyone played it and if so was it any good? This was a big missed opportunity for me (it wasn't released in Australia) as I always preferred that battle system having been a fan of the Shining Force series. Every now and again I think about picking up a PS1 or 2 now they are so much cheaper and FFT would be one of the biggest reasons why.

I loved FF7 though funnily enough I've never played any of the games afterwards (I think I had played some of the earlier ones but I might be confusing rpgs), after the PS1 my next console was the xbox which although its a great console, was a mistake for me. Alot of the games I've wanted over the years have been PS only.

Vincent was definitely a favourite character, was there a point at which you couldn't get him to join the party? I seem to remember having to restart the game, cursing all the while that he had better be worth it, his limit breaks alone meant that of course he was. I never played with Red XIII only because before I started playing FF7 I had spent lots of time watching a friend play it, Red XIII was his favourite and so I wanted to see different characters.

If we're being careful of spoilers I'll just say that that part annoyed the hell out of me at the time, an early favourite and I never saw it coming at all. Brilliant for the storyline and personally it's gotta be up there as one of the best moments in gaming.

I'm almost sure the first time I fought one of the final battles it ended in one turn! I'm not sure if it was Sephiroth or Jenova but without meaning to I entered the fight with Cloud maxed out for his last limit break which I had just gained, everything seemed to click and that was pretty much that. Was a bit disapointing so I went back and did it all again.

The graphics at the time were simply amazing and it was such a huge risk trying to match all 3? versions of the characters (battle / town exploration / cut scenes?) and not just have people be able to recognise each one but be able to feel for the characters and story as a whole. That for me was probably their biggest achievement.

I wonder how many years have been spent worldwide trying to breed the perfect chocobo
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Old 19th September 2007, 02:18 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Quokka View Post
If we're being careful of spoilers I'll just say that that part annoyed the hell out of me at the time, an early favourite and I never saw it coming at all.
To be honest I think most peole know of this even if they haven't played the game - such a pivital moment - and it never happened again

On the tactics front - there is a new release of the game on the PSP currently (I haven't played) and another realease which appears to be an updated version of the GBA tactics, to be released at some point on the DS - which I will be playing when it comes out in the UK _ so the rest of the world better not spoil it for me in the extra months that I have to wait!

"No, no, I loved the materia system too! Hated the junction system in VIII. "
The only problem I found was that I used GFs to kill everything and never used the characters - consequently when I met bosses I sometimes had to go back to level up my characters as they would get killed before the GFs could summon - as a point why have we seen Q (I wont even try to spell) the flying lightning bird-my favourite GF.

Just out of interest, has anyone played the FFIII game on the DS? It a good game, though reveiwers whined about it not using the duel screen well, but I consider that to be trivial - most DS games use it just to show a map or extra details that after a few hours play you don't need to see. The other complaint they had was that the game was hard - - - not sure what they're moning about there I prefer a game that is a challenge to play - otherwise they might as well just make a short film.
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Old 19th September 2007, 02:52 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

Ignoramus me!

What is The One Winged Angel? Sephiroth himself? A video? A section of the game?

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Old 19th September 2007, 04:28 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Quokka View Post
I wonder how many years have been spent worldwide trying to breed the perfect chocobo
I cheated a bit, I have to say. With the help of the player's guide.

(Mind you, there was always the option of beating Ruby Weapon. I did it the other way round - bred the gold chocobo, got Knights of the Round, and then beat Ruby. Then I had two gold chocobos. Seemed a bit pointless, really.)

Giovanna, Sephiroth is the One Winged Angel, and it's also the title of his theme in the game. That has to be one of the best pieces of music in any game, in my opinion.
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Old 19th September 2007, 05:44 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

There's also an orchestral version of the One Winged Angel, about half the length of the in-game music (4 mins roughly). It's excellent. You used to be able to get tons of FF and other game music from a site called Galbadia Hotel, but I think they've cut back on a lot of their available downloads.
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Old 19th September 2007, 05:48 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

Awww. Now we have no excuse for hijacking!!

---

Mind if I fan the flames of pure, unadulterated rumour a little more?

Famitsu hints at Final Fantasy VII remake :: PlayStation Universe (PSU)

Of course, one must remember that this is PURE RUMOUR.

But I must say, I do like the look of this sentence:

Quote:
Also, according to rumor, the Square Enix-developed project is being fully funded by Sony Computer Entertainment.
If Squenix do make a remake, then not only will it be graphically superior to everything out there, but I reckon Squenix might add extra content. Maybe package the game as Final Fantasy VII: Final Mix like they've been doing with the extended Kingdom Hearts games.

---

Anyway, Final Fantasy. FFXIII!!!!!!!!!!!!

It's the Squenix Conference at TGS tomorrow, I think, and one of the games that is being given time, if only in video form, is FFXIII. So far what we've seen is pre-rendered CGI, although it has been hotly argued by some that a variety of scenes were actually in-game renders, not from cutscenes but from the fighting system.
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Old 19th September 2007, 05:53 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

From what I understand, the source of the Final Fantasy VII remake is Sony's re-rendering of a FFVII cut scene at a industry conference to demonstrate the Playstation 3's capabilities.

But you never know....if there is a large fan reaction to the idea of a FFVII remake, it may be more than enough incentive for SquareEnix to cash in.
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Old 19th September 2007, 06:19 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

More than just a large fan reaction, and that's even with Squenix having said, various times, that it's not happening.

The re-rendering was done by Squenix as a Tech Demo for Sony's E3 2005 Press Conference, where they officially announced the PS3. For those who want to see it: Gametrailers.com - Final Fantasy VII, Sony Press Conference

Recently, this was discovered: Final Fantasy VII remake confirmed in Crisis Core? :: PlayStation Universe (PSU)

At the end of FFVII: Crisis Core, after beating the game for a second time, a similar video to the Tech Demo above is played (it contains a couple of extra things). At the end of the trailer is the image:



The Famistu rumour I posted above is a couple of days old. There was also news, a day or two ago, of a new FFVII game (most probably a spin-off) called Endless Crisis: Final Fantasy VII.

Endless Crisis: Final Fantasy VII to be announced at TGS? :: PlayStation Universe (PSU)

Should be interesting to see what exactly comes from the Squenix Conference tomorrow.
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Old 20th September 2007, 01:01 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: The Final Fantasy Series Thread

Talysia, you've made me want to play Dirge even more. I don't mind FPS, I'll play anything if it's good. I agree that FFXII was all subquests and not much story. It was really disappointing that Vayne was all there was.

What you say about the story is the crux of it for me. They can make it look and feel as ultra-realistic as they want, but we play it for the story, and with the standards they set in the past, we have high expectations now.

thaddeus, great comments, many good points made. The one about Tidus' voice was perhaps my favourite - it drove me crazy, too! Vaan and Penelo's slack Californian in XII wasn't brilliant, either. I agree with pretty much everything you said about the ones I've played, and it's interesting to hear what you thought of the others.

Quokka, I'm not sure if there's a point beyond which you couldn't go back and get Vincent, but from what you're saying it sounds like it. I always got him when I first reached Nibelheim, although I didn't like his limit breaks since you lost control of him for the rest of the fight. He is definitely one of the coolest, but not one of my favourites for battle.

It sounds like the fight you are describing at the end of VII is the Jenova-SYNTHESIS fight. With Cloud's omnislash that would certainly be a one-hit fight! I had this problem at the end of FFX. Once I had beaten Nemesis and Penance, the end was just ridiculously easy.

Overread, Quetzalcoatl was a nice-looking GF, named after the feathered serpent god of the Aztecs. One problem with junctioning for me (apart from the incessant, boring drawing of magic) was that it decreased the incentive to level up, especially once you had powerful spells like Ultima.

I don't know much about the Tactics games at all. Anyone? Haven't played FFIII on the DS yet, either, but I know someone who has.......

Lenny, thanks for the links. Let us know what happens tomorrow!

Speaking of Ultima, favourite spells, anyone?
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