Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Jorpho » Fri Aug 19, 2011 1:06 am UTC

Endless Mike wrote:Did Amarant have a character arc? It's been awhile since I played it, but I seem to recall him showing up and throwing out an occasional one-line and that's about it.
I can't quite remember. I think he did get a soupçon of backstory (whee) in Treno.

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Telchar » Fri Aug 19, 2011 5:22 am UTC

Snow was an absolute tool. The naivety was so overblown as to be ludicrous. His dialogue all sounds forced and his scripting is awful.

Hope is just as bad and for most of the same reasons.

Lightning was the best character and perhaps the best but she was surrounded by awful so it's tough to really judge her.

Sazh was okay sometimes but the little peep thing was annoying,as was the caricature they sometimes seemed to do with him.

Between the lackluster characters and the story on rails, it was awful. I still haven't finished it because I don't really care what happens.

I can see why some people didn't like the characters in 12. Vaan and Penelo are annoyingly cloying. At least everyone else except Balthier (who was a caricature but a pleasant one) act in rational ways and have reasonable adult conversations with other people. I think it helps that since I was free to explore as I wanted I didn't care as much about what the character's motivations were because they didn't matter as far as what my gameplay was doing and were sufficient or better as far as storyline/cutscenes went.

With a game on rails like ff13 you have to make the characters amazing such that what you are doing now is what you would be doing anyway. ff13 failed miserably in that regard.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby IcedT » Fri Aug 19, 2011 7:10 am UTC

Telchar wrote:Snow was an absolute tool. The naivety was so overblown as to be ludicrous. His dialogue all sounds forced and his scripting is awful.

Hope is just as bad and for most of the same reasons.

Lightning was the best character and perhaps the best but she was surrounded by awful so it's tough to really judge her.

Sazh was okay sometimes but the little peep thing was annoying,as was the caricature they sometimes seemed to do with him.

Between the lackluster characters and the story on rails, it was awful. I still haven't finished it because I don't really care what happens.

Snow was supposed to be a tool though, and Hope was supposed to be dumb and angsty, he's a kid. Snow's a dumb bro with good intentions, which is why Lightning doesn't think much of him at first but warms up to him gradually. Hope is a confused and angsty kid who grows up a bit and gets less confused and less angsty. I liked Sazh because he was really the only character who had a family and a regular job, the whole
Spoiler:
almost suicide
thing I thought was just lazy scripting because they needed a dramatic moment to bring in his eidolon, but other than that I thought he was a good contribution because he was the only one who had relatively normal concerns. Vanille was just a plot device, so it's kindof to be expected that she was a lousy character. She was just a catch-all character for filling in gaps in plot and character motivation (imagine Fang's character without there being a younger Pulsian for her to want to look after, she'd barely have done anything).

Also, I think a lot of the forced dialogue and situations just come from problems with translation and Japanese story conventions. They're jarring but there's really no way around them.

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Spambot5546 » Fri Aug 19, 2011 1:05 pm UTC

I didn't much care for most of the characters in XII, but I liked Balthier. Dude was dapper as fuck and his introduction, the big entrance followed by "Who are you?" "I play the leading man." is how I want to start introducing myself.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Dark567 » Fri Aug 19, 2011 3:04 pm UTC

IcedT wrote:Snow was supposed to be a tool though, and Hope was supposed to be dumb and angsty, he's a kid. Snow's a dumb bro with good intentions, which is why Lightning doesn't think much of him at first but warms up to him gradually. Hope is a confused and angsty kid who grows up a bit and gets less confused and less angsty.
I mean sometimes you have to think of characters like people in real life, am I amazingly annoyed by frat boys and angsty teenagers? Yes. Hence Snow and Hope.

Tangentially, many of my friends hate BSG because they can't stand the characters: Starbucks crazy, Roslin's a theocrat, Adama is trying to create a military dictatorship, Tigh is an alcoholic etc. Like sure all those things are true, but if characters are perfect, they are usually pretty bland. BSG would suck if Starbuck was just a calm pilot. If we don't give characters flaws we end up with XII over and over again, a set of non-offensive but bland characters. Hell that is something XIII does very well, it doesn't make perfect characters, even the favorite, Lightning is pretty flawed.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Cathode Ray Sunshine » Fri Aug 19, 2011 11:21 pm UTC

I've actually never finished a FF game before, and always heard about how awesome they were, so I simultaneously started both FF VI and VII. VII is actually better than I expected. VI is also pretty good, but hasn't really grabbed me, and although VII is also quite good, I don't find myself quite enjoying it as much as I thought I would.

Aside from maybe 1 or 2 games, I really don't have much experience with RPGs, and aside from Chrono Trigger (which is amazing), you could say that these are the first "true" RPGs that I've played. The thing that bothers me most is the random battles. I don't know if they are standard in every RPG, but it really bothers me that sometimes I'm trying to figure out where to go or what to do and I'm low on health and these enemies keep popping up. At least in CT I could see them coming and try to avoid them. On VII, I've yet to finish disc 1, and on VI I'm a bit after the part where you have to act in a play. My question is, should I continue playing because the best is yet to come, or should I be really into the game(s) at this point and if I'm not I shouldn't bother to keep playing?

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby EmptySet » Sat Aug 20, 2011 4:04 am UTC

Cathode Ray Sunshine wrote:Aside from maybe 1 or 2 games, I really don't have much experience with RPGs, and aside from Chrono Trigger (which is amazing), you could say that these are the first "true" RPGs that I've played. The thing that bothers me most is the random battles. I don't know if they are standard in every RPG, but it really bothers me that sometimes I'm trying to figure out where to go or what to do and I'm low on health and these enemies keep popping up.


The style of random battles you get in FF6 and 7 are mostly a feature of Japanese RPGs. Western RPGs don't normally have a separate "battle screen" like Final Fantasy does, and just let you see and fight enemies with the same interface you use for doing everything else. You may still get occasional random encounters for long-distance travel, setting up camp in an unsafe area, etc., but when you're just walking through a dungeon there would normally be enemies actually standing around, more like Chrono Trigger. Also, a lot of Western RPGs take place in real-time and are more like an action game, rather than having FF's menu system. In Fallout 3 you can spot and shoot enemies like you would in an FPS, for instance.

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Shivahn » Sat Aug 20, 2011 3:29 pm UTC

EmptySet wrote:
Cathode Ray Sunshine wrote:Aside from maybe 1 or 2 games, I really don't have much experience with RPGs, and aside from Chrono Trigger (which is amazing), you could say that these are the first "true" RPGs that I've played. The thing that bothers me most is the random battles. I don't know if they are standard in every RPG, but it really bothers me that sometimes I'm trying to figure out where to go or what to do and I'm low on health and these enemies keep popping up.


The style of random battles you get in FF6 and 7 are mostly a feature of Japanese RPGs. Western RPGs don't normally have a separate "battle screen" like Final Fantasy does, and just let you see and fight enemies with the same interface you use for doing everything else. You may still get occasional random encounters for long-distance travel, setting up camp in an unsafe area, etc., but when you're just walking through a dungeon there would normally be enemies actually standing around, more like Chrono Trigger. Also, a lot of Western RPGs take place in real-time and are more like an action game, rather than having FF's menu system. In Fallout 3 you can spot and shoot enemies like you would in an FPS, for instance.

Some Japanese RPGs do away with random battles.

The Tales series, in particular, has a pretty awesome battle system (well, some of the Tales games do.)

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby SecondTalon » Sun Aug 21, 2011 4:51 am UTC

Cathode Ray Sunshine wrote:I've actually never finished a FF game before, and always heard about how awesome they were, so I simultaneously started both FF VI and VII. VII is actually better than I expected. VI is also pretty good, but hasn't really grabbed me, and although VII is also quite good, I don't find myself quite enjoying it as much as I thought I would.

Aside from maybe 1 or 2 games, I really don't have much experience with RPGs, and aside from Chrono Trigger (which is amazing), you could say that these are the first "true" RPGs that I've played. The thing that bothers me most is the random battles. I don't know if they are standard in every RPG, but it really bothers me that sometimes I'm trying to figure out where to go or what to do and I'm low on health and these enemies keep popping up. At least in CT I could see them coming and try to avoid them. On VII, I've yet to finish disc 1, and on VI I'm a bit after the part where you have to act in a play. My question is, should I continue playing because the best is yet to come, or should I be really into the game(s) at this point and if I'm not I shouldn't bother to keep playing?
Speaking as someone who played FF7, got through the first disc and said "Alright, I'm not playing another goddamn second of this stupid fucking game and were I not borrowing it, I would break the CDs right now."... Play through the first disc. Just do it. It's a handy enough marker for your progress.

I never played 6, so I can't help you there.

Anyway, as people have kinda answered the other questions... you're talking about staples of the particular thing you're playing. It's.. a fairly large part of the Eastern CRPG experience - there will be random encounters. The exceptions are just that - exceptions. A Western CRPG may have random encounters, but they aren't going to be handled in the same way..... the entire evolution of the thing is fascinating, but pretty damn long and wordy - so just imagine that both Eastern and Western CRPGs started on the exact same page then evolved in completely different directions. Neither one is right, they're just different ways of doing more or less the same thing.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Dark567 » Sun Aug 21, 2011 4:14 pm UTC

On FF7, play until the part which is considered the single most important moment in video games*(you will probably know when you get there).

On random encounters, they are annoying as fuck, but they seem necessary. The two FF's that have done away with them, have been hurt pretty heavily by it in my opinion. I honestly think 12 and 13 would have been better had they had random encounters instead of their alternatives to it.



*
Spoiler:
Aeris death
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby SecondTalon » Sun Aug 21, 2011 9:02 pm UTC

Dark567 wrote:On FF7, play until the part which is considered the single most important moment in video games*

By people who've only played 2 or 3 video games ever?
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Box Boy » Sun Aug 21, 2011 9:10 pm UTC

I'm guessing that's hyperbole, ST.
although, if you're serious dark, I gotta ask: how do you figure it's so important?
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Dark567 » Sun Aug 21, 2011 9:27 pm UTC

It's a little hyperbole, but it is considered fairly important.
Spoiler:
Most games when they kill characters, often have ways to revive them, or alternatives where they don't die(i.e. Mass Effect), especially in '90's. I have always felt like this removes some of the emotional impact of a characters death, I can go play Mass Effect 2 again and no one dies, hooray. FF7 doesn't give you that option. She's dead. Everyone who plays through that game knows shes dead and had the same experience of seeing her die, akin to a movie. The suddenness of it also made it extremely breaking the mold of video game deaths, which usually had more foreshadowing.

http://www.gamepro.com/article/features ... ge-9-of-9/
http://www.gamespy.com/articles/798/798722p5.html
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Spambot5546 » Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:34 pm UTC

Really? You're looking for an example of a game where they give you a way out of having someone die and you go with Mass Effect? The game where
Spoiler:
no matter what you lose a teammate on Virmire?
Why not pick, like, Diablo? Nobody important dies in Diablo.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Dark567 » Sun Aug 21, 2011 10:44 pm UTC

Spambot5546 wrote:Really? You're looking for an example of a game where they give you a way out of having someone die and you go with Mass Effect? The game where
Spoiler:
no matter what you lose a teammate on Virmire?
Why not pick, like, Diablo? Nobody important dies in Diablo.
Eh. I was thinking more of Mass Effect 2.
Spoiler:
Still in Mass Effect 1, they foreshadow that moment a lot and I can always go back and have the other person live. That seems to lessen the emotional impact for me a little, although not lessened as much as ME2 where I feel nothing if Mordin or Legion dies. Although the Virmire sequence was another really great moment of gaming.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby SecondTalon » Mon Aug 22, 2011 12:52 am UTC

Ultima 7 Part 2. 1993.
Spoiler:
Dupre, one of your good friends for the past four games, dies in a "No, he's not coming back. Ever" way.

...


It's a shame they never made a 9th game.
Just saying.. they didn't do it first and it wasn't even unique when Ultima 7.5 did it. It also wasn't a "In a cutscene where everyone's holding the idiot ball" way, nor was it in a way that completely ignored what magic and items seem to be capable of doing way either.. which is exactly what the incident in FF7 was.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Dark567 » Mon Aug 22, 2011 1:06 am UTC

Hmm. Never ended up playing part 2 only part 1.

Plus had you played that 9th game, he was resurrected. That's the kinda shit I am talking about.

As for FF7, its been established in the series that either after a certain amount of time or due to a certain amount of damage the magic and items can't help revive people......okay, so maybe I am just looking for an excuse to suspend my disbelief. :-P
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby EmptySet » Mon Aug 22, 2011 4:25 am UTC

SecondTalon wrote:Just saying.. they didn't do it first and it wasn't even unique when Ultima 7.5 did it. It also wasn't a "In a cutscene where everyone's holding the idiot ball" way, nor was it in a way that completely ignored what magic and items seem to be capable of doing way either.. which is exactly what the incident in FF7 was.


Not to mention that it had been done in at least two previous Final Fantasy games. FF7 wasn't even the first game to do it in its own series.

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Drumheller769 » Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:03 pm UTC

In Phantasy Star 4, one of the main characters dies early..and they are dead, gone....I hope you didn't just buy all that new gear for them because too bad, nobody else will use that same kind of gear for a long time.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby mosc » Mon Aug 22, 2011 3:19 pm UTC

Nobody played PS4. Everyone thought it would be like PS1-3, which were annoying to play, and after later PS games shit on the brand nobody had nostalgia towards it anymore. PS4 was an awesome game though, best RPG on the genesis platform. It's also much more playable today than similar age RPGs due to it's macros, fast loading, and simplistic combat.

I think the whole death thing in FF7 was significant on an individual player basis. It's just a game that came out at the right time on a platform kids were pushing for. It was a game a lot of middleschoolers were talking about and being that young, it was their first exposure to a plot in something they cared about more complex than a boxcar kids book. That same age group went on to be the first widespread embracers of the internet and thus FF7's status was concrete. People born before and after will never quite get it even though the internet's age group has now widened.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby SecondTalon » Mon Aug 22, 2011 5:08 pm UTC

Dark567 wrote:Hmm. Never ended up playing part 2 only part 1.

Plus had you played that 9th game, he was resurrected. That's the kinda shit I am talking about.

It's a shame they never made a 9th game.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby mosc » Mon Aug 22, 2011 7:08 pm UTC

I think U9 was less of a corruption than PSO. You have to agree to that. Even though they both didn't exist...

PS4 has one of the highest rations of quality divided by number of people who played it ever. Fucking PSO
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby SecondTalon » Mon Aug 22, 2011 7:35 pm UTC

Sure, I guess. I never played PS0. Or 4. Or 1. Just 2 and 3. Though I think I have 4.... I should get on that.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Telchar » Tue Aug 23, 2011 2:52 pm UTC

Dark567 wrote:
IcedT wrote:Snow was supposed to be a tool though, and Hope was supposed to be dumb and angsty, he's a kid. Snow's a dumb bro with good intentions, which is why Lightning doesn't think much of him at first but warms up to him gradually. Hope is a confused and angsty kid who grows up a bit and gets less confused and less angsty.
I mean sometimes you have to think of characters like people in real life, am I amazingly annoyed by frat boys and angsty teenagers? Yes. Hence Snow and Hope.

Tangentially, many of my friends hate BSG because they can't stand the characters: Starbucks crazy, Roslin's a theocrat, Adama is trying to create a military dictatorship, Tigh is an alcoholic etc. Like sure all those things are true, but if characters are perfect, they are usually pretty bland. BSG would suck if Starbuck was just a calm pilot. If we don't give characters flaws we end up with XII over and over again, a set of non-offensive but bland characters. Hell that is something XIII does very well, it doesn't make perfect characters, even the favorite, Lightning is pretty flawed.


Right, but in BSG they weren't all fucking annoying and a cared about some of them. They also weren't stereotypical. Starbuck was a douche who I hate to this day but I can see why she was a douche. The ammount of syrupy and contrived angst and naivety they poured onto 13 could cover the worlds largest pancake with a few gallons left over.

The meaningless cutscenes without context were really awkward too. Overall, I like FF12 more because they story was better and I had more control over wtf I was doing. Games on rails have to have amazing stories or I grate at the lack of control and ff13 was probably the worst story since 8. Maybe worse than 8 but with less deus ex machina.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Dark567 » Tue Aug 23, 2011 4:38 pm UTC

FF8 is best game eva. So your comparison of 13 to it only serves to explain my liking to 13.

....and I only even every played the inferior PC one.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Decker » Tue Aug 23, 2011 4:41 pm UTC

I'm starting to think that I need to try eight again. Maybe I was Doing It Wrong(TM).
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby ProZac » Tue Aug 23, 2011 5:05 pm UTC

8 is definitely not a system for everyone. As noted, you find yourself using "Draw" a lot, and characters are useless without constant GF swapping, which is annoying. Nonetheless, I still say it has the best characters of any FF, and the story is interesting,

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Telchar » Tue Aug 23, 2011 9:08 pm UTC

Actually I was thinking of 10 but typed 8. My bad.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby capefeather » Tue Aug 23, 2011 9:15 pm UTC

Most games when they kill characters, often have ways to revive them, or alternatives where they don't die(i.e. Mass Effect), especially in '90's. I have always felt like this removes some of the emotional impact of a characters death, I can go play Mass Effect 2 again and no one dies, hooray. FF7 doesn't give you that option. She's dead. Everyone who plays through that game knows shes dead and had the same experience of seeing her die, akin to a movie. The suddenness of it also made it extremely breaking the mold of video game deaths, which usually had more foreshadowing.


All of the previous FFs other than 1 do that, too. 2 and 3 in particular do it several times each, and due to technical limitations, they often leave the impact to context. A lot of the deaths are pretty hard to see coming, too. FF7 doesn't actually break very many molds as far as JRPGs are concerned, other than maybe being a "huge" 3D JRPG that tricks you into thinking you've only experienced a small fraction of the game by beating Sephiroth.

I don't even think the death is the high point of the game, either...

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Lostdreams » Wed Aug 24, 2011 1:27 pm UTC

FF4 Tellah dies. He's old and makes the decision that causes his death so I guess that is a bit different. Edge's parents though, that was the standard for me for a long time. They die after being horrificly mutated and regain sentience right before their deaths, it was pretty terrible.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Spambot5546 » Wed Aug 24, 2011 1:38 pm UTC

Speaking of IV, I always felt that Palom and Porom's deaths were the most poignant of any Final Fantasy. Far more so than Aeris's, though the fact that I really disliked Aeris and was happy to see her go may have unduly influenced my opinion.

I choose to ignore the fact that they get revived in the game end cutscene, because that really ruins what was one of my favorite parts of the game.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Lostdreams » Wed Aug 24, 2011 1:42 pm UTC

Yeah the list from that game would have been longer if the non-deaths would have been included.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby mosc » Wed Aug 24, 2011 4:36 pm UTC

I love FF4A because of all the non-deaths making sense. They let you go recruit all the characters again (save Tellah who actually died) and let you then choose your party members. Best part is they give you awesome things to DO with said party members as well. I still hold, and few have even played the content to dispute me, that the "extra" 10 hours or so tacked onto the GBA version of FF4 is the greatest content in any FF game ever.

Especially if you're a FF4 fan, you really aught to check out that version. It still pisses me off that none of the added content made it to the DS FF4.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby setzer777 » Wed Aug 24, 2011 6:48 pm UTC

I've played FF 6, 7, and 10. 10 was my favorite, but with all of them I got annoyed by the relative lack of strategy required. Unless you really go out of your way to under-level yourself, you almost never have to use any strategy more complicated than choosing one of the following:

1.Attack
2.Use strongest spell
3.Use elemental weakness

or occasionally

4. Use status effect in the one contrived battle where it's actually useful
5. Buy 99 phoenix downs (which are pretty cheap) and use one whenever party member dies

I remember 10 did have a few battles that were actually challenging (such as Seymour 2 and Yunalesca), and 6 maybe a couple (only one I remember was tentacle monster holding Figaro engine). But for the most part there's just not enough strategy and too many of the options are useless (like most status effects).

Oh, and from my name you should know who the most awesome FF character is...

Edit: Actually, I'll give 6 a little more credit. The floating continent was also pretty challenging.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby ProZac » Wed Aug 24, 2011 6:54 pm UTC

Well, I don't think FF really wants the main game to be challenging. They're targeted to a mass audience, with no difficulty levels, so they need to be completable by everyone. They all of sidequests (generally at the end) that are more challenging for those that want it. For example, some of the hunts in 12/13 are absurd.

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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Dark567 » Wed Aug 24, 2011 7:03 pm UTC

setzer777 wrote:I've played FF 6, 7, and 10. 10 was my favorite, but with all of them I got annoyed by the relative lack of strategy required.
I just always try to play them under-leveled. Also in 8 due to levelscaling, the difficulty was always pretty consistent.

13 also pretty much no matter what requires a good strategy due to its well created battle system.(Granted you don't get to use the whole thing until the end)

XII was also very difficult for me.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby setzer777 » Wed Aug 24, 2011 7:15 pm UTC

Oh! I did play (but not finish) 12, and I'll agree that it was challenging. Haven't tried 13, though I might soon (I did hear that it's very simple for the beginning hours of the game).

I actually don't have a problem with easy games, many of them are quite enjoyable. But I feel like the only way to make a menu-based game fun is to introduce a sufficient number of tactical decisions that have to be made on a case-by-case basis, and FF tends to lack that (even with bonus bosses it seems more about the grind and equipment than any in-battle decisions).

In general it seems difficult to make strategically interesting gameplay with the JRPG "each side lines up and takes turns attacking any target they want" system. Introducing movement and location into battles does add a lot of possible variety and strategy.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Xanthir » Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:28 pm UTC

setzer777 wrote:Haven't tried 13, though I might soon (I did hear that it's very simple for the beginning hours of the game).

The game hides nearly all of the combat complexity at first, and very slowly trickles it out. You don't have enough for battles to be non-trivial until 8-10 hours in. You don't have enough for battles to be "fun" until at least 20 hours in. It only, *finally*, becomes roughly complete around the third disc.

Once you do reach that point, though, battles are indeed fun and challenging if you don't over-level yourself. They took the fairly interesting route of making a party wipe just reset you to immediately before the battle, so they didn't need to pull any punches - several enemies throw down really powerful attacks that will destroy you if you're not ready. The eidolon battles are interesting set-pieces, too - they have a strict time-limit and non-traditional win conditions, so figuring out how to reach a win before time is up and before the (very powerful) eidolon wipes you is a challenge.

The degree of control you have over battle is somewhat different than previous games, and jarring if you don't realize what's going on and where your actual control sits. You only control one party member; the other two are AI. Further, if you have the game on normal setting, it's generally too fast to actually make intelligent decisions for the member you do control; most of the time you just let the AI choose your attacks as well. The strategy lies in (a) choosing your target well (your party members will usually attack the same thing you do), and (b) MANAGING YOUR PARADIGMS. Each character runs a single paradigm at a time, which only grants you a targetted subset of your abilities. Only a Medic can heal, only a Synergist can buff, only a Ravager can throw down elemental magic, etc. You choose, outside of battle, up to 6 sets of paradigms for your characters, and switch between them in battle. This is the strategy part where you have control and your human input is needed - understanding when you should press the attack (with a Commando/Rav/Rav paradigm), pull back to a mildly defensive position (Com/Rav/Med), go full-on defense (Sentinel/Med/Med), hold enemies steady while you regroup (Com/Med/Syn), or use some other paradigm set entirely is very important.

In other words, I like the game a lot now that I've reached the point where I'm actually playing the game, and not being hand-held through a purposely simplified form of combat. It's worth your time, but I think they still made a few giant strategic mistakes that I hope they don't repeat.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby mosc » Thu Aug 25, 2011 2:12 pm UTC

That's all true... after you've beaten the game and unlocked more than 3 paradigms for each character. FF13 would have been a much better game if they gave access to the actual system before you'd actually beaten it.

Fighting a turtle even with a fairly close to max party is not trivial and the switching and forethought involved is fun. There's really none of that before you beat the game though. Most of your time before you beat the game will be flopping between something like sen/com/med and com/rav/rav and even then, you won't flop very often. You'll actually be giving less commands per second than you would in a traditional FF game and have far far FAR less to choose from. FF13's game system sucks until after you beat it. I agree it can be awesome switching between sen/sen/sen and rav/rav/rav timing your opponents attacks away like it was a fighting game but that's totally impossible before you beat the game.
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Re: Final Fantasy Omnithread - All FF, all the time.

Postby Xanthir » Thu Aug 25, 2011 7:35 pm UTC

I don't disagree. The game gets more fun as it progresses. I thought it was sufficiently complex to be "fun" around the third disk, when you unlock level 8 of the crystarium. It would have been a much better game if they'd pulled this functionality into earlier in the game.
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