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Motto
Aug 3, 2013



I liked the gba ports of V and VI as a kid but I don't find the series generally interesting these days rip

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guts and bolts
May 16, 2015

Have you heard the Good News?

LITERALLY MY FETISH posted:

I don't think you guys really remember what ff7's combat was like, though, because it was pretty much the same poo poo.

The mechanical aspect of "choose an action from a menu" is always boring, but FF7's Materia system and the way it handles Limit Breaks makes the ATB system at least mildly more palatable, although it is actually still slightly faster barring Summon animations - things just happen quicker and there's less downtime overall. Battles get to the menu faster, they resolve faster, there's not five camera cuts when you cast a spell, etc.

ATB is ATB is ATB, which is part of my argument - the only way to make ATB "fun" is to give the player discretion over what options pop up in the menus for their characters, or make it so that sometimes the options change. FF7 does both of these with Materia and with Limits, so it's the best of the bunch.

Like, if you want a really good battle system mechanically, you're talking about poo poo like Legend of Dragoon's Additions system or if you like real-time you'd probably enjoy Star Ocean Till The End of Time. ATB is just always gonna be picking poo poo from menus, it's just that at least FF7 had the decency to try to make that fun.

raditts
Feb 21, 2001

The Kwanzaa Bot is here to protect me.

g0lbez posted:

what the gently caress do people see in 9 that game put me to sleep by disc 2

Seriously, I even liked 9 and I still think it was dull as dishwater. Definitely a product of that era of "more hours = better than" along with Dragon Quest 7.

Saint Freak
Apr 15, 2007



I died on fleek, and so am cursed to roam the Earth forever, eternally on fleek...


Buglord

Heaven Spacey posted:

Tifa tries to help, but she's almost as broken as he is, and can't really do much. She changes a lot too, though, and both she and Cloud become much stronger people by the end.

Tifa is a cool character that a lot of people (in this thread even) seem to reduce to 'love-interest' and 'tits'.

Like, someone who is hosed up themselves, but their friend is even MORE hosed up and PTSD-ridden and they have no idea how to deal with that or even broach the subject without possibly sending them over the edge is a loving real-rear end storyline to have in a genre/at a time where most of the other game's stories were "I am from the good kingdom, and I will defeat the bad kingdom!".





Also she suplexes houses and dragons and poo poo.

Saint Freak fucked around with this message at Nov 16, 2016 around 21:11

Coolguye
Jul 6, 2011

Required by his programming!


LITERALLY MY FETISH posted:

I know the pacing of the story gets weird, but no FF has decent story pacing. I don't think you guys really remember what ff7's combat was like, though, because it was pretty much the same poo poo. Combat didn't really get faster until X, and then they played around a lot with making everything faster in more ways that "faster animations" like ffx's swap function and especially ffxiii's stance swapping and AI control of other party members.

7 wasn't great in that respect and honestly the biggest design bit that i miss from the 16-bit days is harsh limitations on animations, you're right. you're also not wrong that some stuff in 7 was seriously overwrought (knights of the round got loving OLD after the first or second time you used it), but you can go back and time it - just the 'i'm casting' animations in 9 are over twice as long, many click the camera around an extra time or two when compared to 7, and there are many, many more enemies slinging spells and using casting animations.

7 is definitely guilty of this but 9 is like, double ultra super guilty.

well HECK Phil
Feb 25, 2010


Toilet Rascal

I've enjoyed the direction the Final Fantasy series has gone over the years. While I've not enjoyed all the titles in the franchise, overall I've liked what they've put out. I look forward to the 15th installment in this series and do hope, excluding the traditional tropes used, that it's something new and different from the previous titles. Also, Final Fantasy VI is a flawed game, but I still, to this day, enjoy it. I can overlook game faults and story holes if the entirety of the experience is focused on fun game play.

fivegears4reverse
Apr 4, 2007

by R. Guyovich


Jenner posted:

You make some really good points but I just... disagree.

I think the core issue with your argument that FF7 is the ruiner of the franchise is pretty much encapsulated by this sentence right here.

You're repeatedly given evidence as to why some of your assumptions and personal fanfiction about FF7 is off or incorrect in some way, and you basically disregard it as either not being "good enough" or not mattering anyway because it doesn't fit into your internalized narrative of What Brought Final Fantasy Down.

Like, read this bit of yours again:

Jenner posted:

Okay first of all no it's not. The game literally starts with you joining a terrorist organization to oppose an evil corporation to save the planet. And ultimately ends with you defeating the big bad (who I agree, does not come out of nowhere) to save the planet.

Second I fail to see how FF7 is more about something than FF4, which is about opposing an evil empire and seeking redemption from your sins before ultimately becoming about saving the world from a big bad that comes out of nowhere. Or FF5 where you are sent off right away to protect the orbs/crystals to keep the world safe ultimately leading to a battle with a big bad that came out of nowhere to save the planet. Literally the only difference between these two and FF7 is that you know who Sephiroth is before you fight him.

FF7 starts off with the conflict between a terrorist organization as an "evil corporation" only because this is how it is initially portrayed. FF7 spends more time in one central city than most FFs up to that point spent time on whole continents and townships found therein. From the start up until we actually leave Midgar, all Shinra ultimately appears to be is just a really nasty corporation in control of the city. You can't really rely on Barret or even Tifa to be telling you the truth about everything because our perspective, like Cloud's, is ultimately limited. Cloud himself is acting the part of Mercenary, and is trying to be above it all (and fails to pull this off almost immediately). Barret and Tifa are both TERRORISTS who are trying to coerce him into deeper involvement with their movement, after we see that when their first bomb goes off, it takes parts of other neighborhoods with it. We don't need to have an explicit cutscene to tell us that other people are being caught up in this, the brief glimpse of debris crushing homes near the first bombed reactor is enough.

When we actually get to Shinra HQ itself, after many trials, we start to get the serious impression that Shinra isn't "just" a corporate entity with an oversized security force. It's an army, with walking tanks, attack helicopters, giant robots, genetically enhanced super soldiers. Throughout the Midgar portion of FF7, we are told that there is a greater part to this conflict, but ultimately we don't SEE it until we get to Shinra HQ, and even then its nothing compared to what we get after leaving Midgar.

When we leave Midgar, from that point forward we are shown almost location by location that Shinra IS the evil empire gone corporate. They have taken over a coastal city for the sole purpose of putting together the biggest artillery piece EVER just to bombard those NotJapanese Savages for not accepting the Shinra way. Fort Condor is under constant siege throughout the game, and if you fail them everyone in that place is killed.

Mining towns left desolate and decayed from Shinra abandoning them. Everywhere we go, we see the effects of Shinra's war (it was a war) on the entire world. Broken homes and dreams, many of which belong to the actual party members. Worse yet, it feels distinctly as though the war has already been lost. Despite setbacks by the end of the Midgar portion of the game, Shinra is still nominally in control of pretty much everything.

You're barely even the underground resistance after the war was lost by the rest of the world. Not only was it lost, most of the world has given up entirely on changing things. Its a struggle just to maintain the status quo that doesn't involve having Shinra nuke you with massive artillery or send a small army to clean house. Your quest doesn't even focus on these things for a long while because ultimately our Goal is Sephiroth/Jenova. It's not until Aeris is killed that we see the game heavily shift away from a fairly personal quest for some vaguely fulfilling vengeance. From that point on it does become clear over the course of the story that this is MUCH bigger than the personal wrongs that every person of the party has suffered from Shinra or Sephiroth.

I think that your claims about FF7 aren't coming from a particularly intellectual perspective specifically, because like most people have doing in this thread deliberately or sarcastically, you are overlooking, dismissing, and misinterpreting huge swaths of the game for the sake of presenting your own arguments, while also playing up events from the game you do love and countering any criticism of it with a perfunctory you're wrong. I know that this is peak goon school of internet debates here, but come on.

OneEightHundred
Feb 28, 2008

Soon, we will be unstoppable!


guts and bolts posted:

It's especially poignant given how things do not just fix themselves at the end. Cloud didn't get Nibelheim back. Aerith wasn't miraculously resurrected. Tifa doesn't really have her romantic shining knight - probably. Barret's home is still hosed and Dyne is still dead. Wutai is still a tourist trap and Lucretia is still frozen in a crystal. Sephiroth's dead and disaster is averted, but instead of solving your problems by eliminating them, FF7 forces the characters to deal with their problems by seeking closure and coping with them instead.
This is a good take, but it's also distinct in how personal all of the losses hit the characters. FF6's apocalyptic midpoint was much broader by comparison.

I think that the degree that FF7 focused on its individual characters was its greatest strength, in stark contrast to the convoluted politics and mythology of the Ivalice setting for example.

guts and bolts posted:

Necron is loving stupid.
FF9 is the only game I can think of where I could tell someone who knows nothing about the game who the final boss is and it wouldn't spoil anything.

Razakai
Sep 15, 2007

People are afraid
To merge on the freeway
Disappear here


XI had the most compelling plot of any game - the war of the original Japanese players reacting to the gaijin invaders by spamming 9/11 ASCII art and trying to murder you with overlevelled crabs.

Kawalimus
Jan 17, 2008

Better Living Through Birding And Pessimism


Playing the actual games doesn't interest me anymore since whatever attracted me to JRPGs went away some time ago. However I do enjoy the FFRK mobile game.

Coolguye
Jul 6, 2011

Required by his programming!


fivegears4reverse posted:

I know that this is peak goon school of internet debates here, but come on.
the entire focal point of the entire clusterfuck is how much individual characters relate to individual players. it's okay for people to take different things away from their experiences and trying to normalize all that to call specific things good and specific things bad is a fool's errand. the best thing you can do is just say hey this game/setting caused more and better reactions than this game/setting, but even that is a slippery slope because the culture keeps changing around these games/settings too. yeah 7 caused a huge stir but the available market for 7 simply doesn't compare to the available market for 6, in scope or demographic. so yeah you're gonna have stupid loving nerd fights because most of the nerds here aren't even talking about the same thing.

raditts
Feb 21, 2001

The Kwanzaa Bot is here to protect me.

g0lbez posted:

*BATTLE SWIRL*
Rockin guitar kicks in while you stare at a black screen for ten seconds!
A blank field appears!
Epic camera swooping across the battlefield!!

Compare that to like FF7 where you get a battle swirl and you're inputting commands no more than five seconds later

Let's not be ridiculous now. The best thing that can be said for ff7 battles is that they're maybe not quite as slow and boring as ff9 battles.

Eej posted:

Bravely Default isn't a good game though so it's kind of a stretch to call it awesome

They're not, but "better than most of the Final Fantasys" is not a terribly high bar to clear, honestly.

raditts fucked around with this message at Nov 16, 2016 around 23:13

Chillgamesh
Jul 29, 2014




Jenner posted:


I don't think I ever mentioned true love in defense of Duane and Katarin though? Also I don't remember them getting killed. I'm pretty sure Terra defeats Humbaba and saves the town and then you defeat Kefka and they're still okay. I also don't think this was a particularly romantic portrayal of teen pregnancy. What makes you think it was?

And I'm not sure how romanticising teen pregnancy (or pregnancy in general tbh) objectifies women in the way you claim (by their virginity and beauty.) Pregnant women are no longer virgins but they do often remain beautiful. It is my opinion that the romanticising of pregnancy objectifies women in the way that it diminishes them, reducing them to having value and being respected solely for their ability to bear life.

First off, aaaa sorry I was thinking of the scene in FF6 where the lady and the esper spin around, shoot sparkles, and a baby appears.

Second, by romanticizing teen pregnancy I mean depicting it as something desirable. The beauty myth perpetuated by pretty much every culture basically states the most "valuable" women are those that are sexually attractive, youthful, and virginal - teenagers. But I guess the characters involved in this scene were minor NPCs anyway, so I feel like this can all go out the window!

I'M loving STOKED FOR FF15!

Razakai posted:

XI had the most compelling plot of any game - the war of the original Japanese players reacting to the gaijin invaders by spamming 9/11 ASCII art and trying to murder you with overlevelled crabs.

Honestly my favorite part about FFXI (other than dying over and over trying to get through Chains of Promathia back in the day) was how each server was large enough that you didn't know everyone on it, but small enough that everyone was interconnected. Even if you'd spoken to a player before, you'd see what linkshell they were in, and odds were you knew several people in that shell. The endgame community in particular was incredibly tight-knit and also steeped in teenage nerd drama.

Chillgamesh fucked around with this message at Nov 16, 2016 around 23:30

LITERALLY MY FETISH
Nov 11, 2010

Could people please stop fighting the avatar war over my avatar. I really appreciate people being nice about it but I'm feeling crappier that people are wasting money because someone is an asshole than I am about the avatar in the first place.


guts and bolts posted:

ATB is ATB is ATB, which is part of my argument - the only way to make ATB "fun" is to give the player discretion over what options pop up in the menus for their characters, or make it so that sometimes the options change. FF7 does both of these with Materia and with Limits, so it's the best of the bunch.

Like, if you want a really good battle system mechanically, you're talking about poo poo like Legend of Dragoon's Additions system or if you like real-time you'd probably enjoy Star Ocean Till The End of Time. ATB is just always gonna be picking poo poo from menus, it's just that at least FF7 had the decency to try to make that fun.

This part is why legend of legaia is one of my favorite jrpgs ever made. They really tried to make a turn based martial arts combat system, and it totally works. The rest of the game is kinda meh, but the combat system is one of the best turn based systems I've ever seen. The later FF games, especially 13 and x-2 do some really cool things with it, though.

Other people have already mentioned it, and so my final thoughts on ff9 being slow is "Yes, but so were all of the other ones with 3d graphics" which I think is a pretty nail on the head way of describing it. Like, go back and watch the random ff7 encounters. They're not much better, maybe a few seconds at best?

fivegears4reverse posted:

I think that your claims about FF7 aren't coming from a particularly intellectual perspective specifically, because like most people have doing in this thread deliberately or sarcastically, you are overlooking, dismissing, and misinterpreting huge swaths of the game for the sake of presenting your own arguments, while also playing up events from the game you do love and countering any criticism of it with a perfunctory you're wrong. I know that this is peak goon school of internet debates here, but come on.

I especially liked the part about "but I don't know what's going on in this story because we're just dumped out here and killing people," and how it entirely misses the point of that whole sequence. Like, does anyone even know what in media res means anymore? And show don't tell?

Also, just because this is what the thread is about : I didn't like 12 at all, but I just couldn't get to the real main character, from what my friend tells me, because Vaan is such a loving terrible boring character, and the combat felt too much like MMO combat for me to want to bother with it. People always talk up the gambits and making the AI, but that's a real poo poo reason to like it. I don't play a turn based RPG for it to play itself, because then I'm just sitting there running down a corridor and watching a game play itself for 100 hours.

Eej
Jun 17, 2007

HEAVYARMS


FF12 does have pretty great non-Vaan characters and the setting and visual design is awesome. Your appreciation of the plot is definitely dependent on how much you like the "our heroes are but tiny gnats stabbing the rear end cheeks of titanic empires clashing" style writing that Matsuno likes though.

HereComesEverybody
Mar 2, 2007

a commodius vicus of recirculation back to Howth Castle and Environs.



With my recent purchase of a Vita, it's been tempting to go back and play through the available Final Fantasy games that I never completed (I-III, V, VIII, and technically X but I got to the last boss and couldn't be bothered to grind it out one last time so I don't count it), but it seems like a dumb and arbitrary goal that I've put on myself. I've probably tried to play through FF1 half a dozen times on various platforms, and I pretty much always stall out after the Elf kingdom because holy moly it's a boring and dated mess. Dragon Quest 1 can at least be beaten in 5-6 hours, but the idea of chugging along for 20+ just to tick off some mental checkbox is...unappealing. Are II and III even any good?

More relevant to the discussion at hand: it was definitely around FFX that the series started to lose favor with me. VII-IX didn't have particularly good writing (I will defend Ted Woolsey's translation of VI to my dying breath), but I think the advent of voice acting really let the awfulness start to shine through. And at this point the series has pretty well left me behind, but that's okay. FFXV does look kinda cool, so I'm pulling for a PC release, or I'll get it on the cheap when I inevitably crack and buy a PS4.

piL
Sep 20, 2007
(__|\\\\)

Drunk post incoming:

I think I saw the word 'profound' in a couple of places over the last five pages which made me chortle. I used to argue about /~the story man~/, but replaying stuff has forced me to conclude that these are weak stories that I thought were great because the methods of telling them were well developed for how I could receive them. These are juvenile tales told in supposedly interesting new ways that (mostly) involve trying to best configure a team for effective press x until the end of a battle.

Which actually puts 8 as my favorite Final Fantasy, not because I enjoyed playing it. It was painful and I identified with none of the characters between when I started playing it and when I quit somewhere on the second disc. I hated the characters, I hated how magic worked. Junctioning gtfo. Bad guys assaulting in squads of motorcycles were the high point, but now pretend you're the anti airborne motorcycle troops empire, so I hate the party even more. But! But, 8 was the game that taught me that the genre was stupid. It's the Snow Crash of Finalae Fantasae.

The story showed me what was wrong with JRPGs: the main character is a wet noodle and there's these themes of romance and lovely reading? I think I first read Nobakov and Phillip K Dick within a year of that game coming out. Why the hell did I care about this story?

The environments showed me what's wrong with JRPGs: this poo poo is absurdly and nonsensical juvenile. How so? It's a high-school for mercenaries culminating in a prom where despite having a gun that is also a sword, you still feel like the lame dork you are in real life.

The character design showed me what's wrong with JRPGs: Exhibit A) it's a gun and a sword so loving cool! That's some TMNT level parody. Exhibit B) nun chucks and Sun dresses is characterization! Exhibit C) you know you're fantasizing being a bunch of hosed up murder hobos, right? Here let me remind you. As soon as Cult Leader Charles Manson Squall leaves one of his cultists party members alone with a job to do, the enormity of ending a sentient life in cold blood (vice the fairly standard genocide you normally commit in these games) comes crashing down and ruins his plot.

The mechanics showed me what's wrong with JRPGs: bad guys match your level. If you grind your level up, the game becomes significantly more difficult (excluding boss battles). You want meaningless decisions that feel like strategy? Junctioning (clearly get 100 of everything. You'll feel like you're strategizing without having to do it).

FF8 was a far more spectacular send-off for a dying genre than people give it credit for.

This post was supposed to be about how much I like Final Fantasy settings, and how Final Fantasy VI is my legit actual fave. And how I'm really excited for Final Fantasy XV's setting whose modern fantasy can allow it to explore modern themes (that it totally won't log). Whoops!

Barudak
May 7, 2007



HereComesEverybody posted:

With my recent purchase of a Vita, it's been tempting to go back and play through the available Final Fantasy games that I never completed (I-III, V, VIII, and technically X but I got to the last boss and couldn't be bothered to grind it out one last time so I don't count it), but it seems like a dumb and arbitrary goal that I've put on myself. I've probably tried to play through FF1 half a dozen times on various platforms, and I pretty much always stall out after the Elf kingdom because holy moly it's a boring and dated mess. Dragon Quest 1 can at least be beaten in 5-6 hours, but the idea of chugging along for 20+ just to tick off some mental checkbox is...unappealing. Are II and III even any good?

More relevant to the discussion at hand: it was definitely around FFX that the series started to lose favor with me. VII-IX didn't have particularly good writing (I will defend Ted Woolsey's translation of VI to my dying breath), but I think the advent of voice acting really let the awfulness start to shine through. And at this point the series has pretty well left me behind, but that's okay. FFXV does look kinda cool, so I'm pulling for a PC release, or I'll get it on the cheap when I inevitably crack and buy a PS4.

2 is a complete mess in the original version and merely dull in the remake. 3 is extremely dated in its original version and in contention for the worst design decisions ever made in an RPG. Seriously, the remake is almost explicitly "this is the wrongest way to handle this"

No. 1 Apartheid Fan
Aug 20, 2005



Several of the FF games - 6, 7, and 10 among them - are good at being "about things" in an impressionistic, broad sort of way and at conveying a theme without necessarily having a good, nuanced, original, or even comprehensible plot.

The worst Final Fantasy is Final Fantasy 2.

Eej
Jun 17, 2007

HEAVYARMS


piL posted:

The environments showed me what's wrong with JRPGs: this poo poo is absurdly and nonsensical juvenile. How so? It's a high-school for mercenaries culminating in a prom where despite having a gun that is also a sword, you still feel like the lame dork you are in real life.

I said it before and I'll say it again, FFX has an awesome setting. Even Blitzball is cool because it's a dumb sport that exists to keep the people of Spira from dwelling on the fact that outside of it their world revolves around ever-present death.

Mrit SA
Nov 11, 2016

by Lowtax


well HECK Phil posted:

I've enjoyed the direction the Final Fantasy series has gone over the years. While I've not enjoyed all the titles in the franchise, overall I've liked what they've put out. I look forward to the 15th installment in this series and do hope, excluding the traditional tropes used, that it's something new and different from the previous titles. Also, Final Fantasy VI is a flawed game, but I still, to this day, enjoy it. I can overlook game faults and story holes if the entirety of the experience is focused on fun game play.

How can FFVI possibly be described as flawed? It had an amazing story, great visuals, good battle systems, etc.

Barudak
May 7, 2007



Mrit SA posted:

How can FFVI possibly be described as flawed? It had an amazing story, great visuals, good battle systems, etc.

From a purely mechanical standpoint there are lots of things that don't work right or are implemented in a poor manner. In addition, having a key part of the game's leveling mechanic gated behind considerable amounts of content is something that shouldn't happen. Finally, the World of Ruin portion of the game is fairly directionless and pacing nosedives as a clumsy more open world and sandbox game style takes over.

Khanstant
Apr 5, 2007


Final Fantasy Tactics Advanced is the only good one.

BlitzBlast
Jul 30, 2011

some people just wanna watch the world burn

Just because you didn't like a game doesn't mean it's the worst thing in existence that no true gamer could ever garner enjoyment from.

I enjoyed playing FFI because it was nice experiencing early RPG gaming.
I enjoyed playing FFII because it let me spam instant death spells and kill everything in the game with a party of naked people dual wielding shields.
I enjoyed playing FFIII because I liked being able to just swap up my party whenever and run silly gimmick teams. I did not enjoy FFIII DS, but I had fun commiserating about it with friends.
I enjoyed playing FFIV because it's like the most standard RPG experience imaginable, and sometimes I want to just go back to basics.
I enjoyed playing FFV because I loved the flexibility the Job system provides and the lighthearted tone of the story.
I enjoyed playing FFVI because I liked the theatre thing it had going on.
I enjoyed playing FFVII because it was a goofy rear end game. Also I like it when video game narratives take advantage of their medium.
I enjoyed playing FFVIII because there were so many ways to break the game difficulty right over your knee.
I enjoyed playing FFIX because I think the characters were charming and I liked the throwbacks to classic FF.
I enjoyed playing FFX because of how well fleshed out the setting was.
I enjoyed playing FFX-2 because of how positive the story was.
I enjoyed playing FFXI because I played it with friends. Then they quit so I did too.
I enjoyed playing FFXII because I like navigating the sprawling environments.

I did not play any of the games past FFXII, but I'm sure that if I did I would have found something to enjoy. Because they are video games, and though I like bitching about things as much as anyone else on the internet I'm not going to pretend that a video game needs to do more than just entertain me.

So if you want to know what happened to Final Fantasy, the answer is nothing at all. They are still games. They may have shifted away from the OP's tastes, but that is not a crime.

EDIT: I will say that I don't enjoy the FF fanbase though.

BlitzBlast fucked around with this message at Nov 17, 2016 around 05:38

8-Bit Scholar
Jan 23, 2016

by FactsAreUseless


World of Final Fantasy is actually very good, no matter which FF is your leastfavorite.

precision
May 7, 2006

Gonna have me some good friends around
Gonna have me some good times in town


I was a grown rear end adult (I mean, legally anyway) when I played FF7, at the time my favorite game of all time was a tie between FF4 and FF6, and I literally stayed up all night playing until I got out of Midgar after my friend, who had rented the game from Blockbuster, went to bed.

The nostalgia argument has never really done it for me. I'm really not sure it holds water in any case ever. When I was 14 I thought that Wizardry 5 and Sqoon were of equal quality level, yet for some mysterious reason I have never been like "Oh man, I gotta replay Sqoon, that game is my jam!"

I think the only way the nostalgia argument works is when you're working from a place of ignorance. If the only punk bands you've ever heard are Green Day and the Sex Pistols, then obviously those are gonna be your idea of "the best punk bands". So if, while growing up, you only ever played bad games, then sure, you'll think those bad games are good, but that's not causally related to your nostalgia at all, it's related to your ignorance.

Most of us probably grew up playing a broad spectrum of games from "poo poo" to "shine" though so I'd say if someone says they love FF7 it's probably true that they actually like it and not that they secretly hate it but nostalgia.

Cipher Pol 9
Oct 9, 2006


FFIX is my favorite FF and one of my favorite games period and even I hate Necron, but I don't fault the rest of the game for it because you can basically forget it even happens and the game doesn't change. The gameplay may be a bit slow, but that's a technical issue and I can't let those get me down in RPGs since it's not what I'm there for, the world and characters and story are all still entertaining and charming as gently caress.

This is also the reason I like FFXIV. I played WoW for four years and could not tell you a single character's name from the story, but FFXIV.2 is basically a new FF that you can keep playing with other people after you finish the story.

Kaptain K
Nov 2, 2007


I must admit, I am fond of you humans.

May you enjoy serendipity,

And may the Age of Fire perpetuate.


FFVIII is better than FFVII or FFIX

Nanomashoes
Aug 18, 2012



First they let the guy that made the good d&d inspired turn based fantasy games make a terrible movie and then they fired the guy that made the serious political dramas based on historical events and they wound up having to give directorship over to the fashion reject so he could make his game about a beautiful perfect pink haired woman who becomes real and marries him.

The problem with the latest FF games is the new directors have a very narrow range of interests that reads: Video Games, Fashion, Anime. The older guys had interests outside of games, Matsuno was big into medieval European history, Sakamoto liked tabletop games and mythology. Now the games are just so up their rear end in anime bullshit that nothing looks interesting or real or makes any sense anymore.

Hokuto
Jul 21, 2002




Soiled Meat

Jenner posted:

But, despite being not that good, FF7 was a commercial success. And because of FF7's massive popularity and profitability Square, along with almost the entire video game industry, embraced the trend of prioritizing graphics over actual substance with frankly depressing results.

Did you ever play Wild Arms 1 for PS1 back in the day? It came out before FF7 did, and it had a similar style of superdeformed 3D combat graphics. I bring this up because your argument that it was FF7 that singlehandedly ruined the aesthetics of every game to come after it is flawed on its face. Developers were already using 3D for combat graphics in PS1 RPGs well before FF7 came out.

For that matter, what's this about emphasis on graphics being some kind of new trend brought about in the late 90s by one single popular RPG? Did you see the quality of the graphic art in FF6? They utilized the SNES's graphical capabilities to create something visually impressive that couldn't have been done on its predecessor system, the NES. Why shouldn't they try to improve their quality when they move to a new medium with higher display capabilities and storage capacity? If you want to blame something, how about blaming the PS1 for ever existing as a disc-based media system?

I'm not sure what your gripe is, exactly. Do you want more sprite-based games? Do you want every game to have a story like FF6's?

I'll come at this from the other perspective. Growing up, I played every FF game that came out in the US, in order. I enjoyed all of them. When I got FF7 at launch, I also enjoyed that game, possibly even more than all the ones that had come before it. Yet every time I want to have a discussion in a public environment about this game which I liked 20 years ago, I get people like you interjecting and informing me that FF6 was better, as if they could demonstrate their superior intellect/taste and show me the error of my ways. Whenever FF7 (or 8) comes up in a discussion, for some reason, people feel either obligated or entitled to inform others why the game being discussed is bad, regardless of what the discussion is about or whether the opinion was asked for. This only happens with FF games, by the way - Nobody (at least in my experience) does this with Dragon Quest or Suikoden or Wild Arms, despite each series having one or more very obvious stinkers in it. It's like the phrase FF7 flips some switch in the heads of 30-somethings that immediately removes any filters or manners they may have had before.

Basically, there's no answer to your questions that will ever satisfy you.

Hokuto fucked around with this message at Nov 17, 2016 around 06:47

Nanomashoes
Aug 18, 2012



For FF 13 the developers had no outline of the game and the artists spent years cranking out thousands of art assets that were hastily thrown together a month before launch with the barest amount effort spent to make enemies match the environments that they are found in. The plot was cobbled together and rewritten to match the levels that they had made that worked. Nobody had any idea what the battle system would actually be until like a year before launch. All of this is from the developer's own words and I can assure you any enjoyment people got out of that game was completely accidental.

I heard 13-2 and 13-3 were OK but man, 13 was such a massive pile of poo poo that it turned me off the series forever after Matsuno's dismissal.

precision
May 7, 2006

Gonna have me some good friends around
Gonna have me some good times in town


Actually, FF13 is extremely enjoyable, though it's definitely true that 13-2 and especially LR are way better.

Clarste
Apr 15, 2013

Just how many mistakes have you suffered on the way here?

An uncountable number, to be sure.


It doesn't take more than a year to design a good battle system or write a good plot. Most of development time would be spent on the art assets. I can imagine it might be weird to work under the limitation of trying to connect existing CGI setpieces, but I don't think that alone makes the game fundamentally terrible.

chumbler
Mar 28, 2010



Switchblade Switcharoo

Lightning Returns is easily the best of the three, but honestly I think 13-1 is better than 13-2.

Though 13-2 has the best ending in all of video games.

No. 1 Apartheid Fan
Aug 20, 2005



Nanomashoes posted:

I heard 13-2 and 13-3 were OK but man, 13 was such a massive pile of poo poo that it turned me off the series forever after Matsuno's dismissal.

13-2 has some issues with things like difficulty curve, but it's way more of an RPG than 13 was in terms of like... stuff to find, systems to experiment with, and options. The core gameplay is nearly identical. If your biggest problem with 13 was that it felt like a series of hallways intermittently broken up by cutscenes, it may be worth playing.

Lightning Returns is pretty much its own animal entirely, and is the best game of the three. You should try it.

The story stuff in both is absolutely wackadoo batshit insanity that makes 13 look restrained and well-considered by comparison.

Nanomashoes
Aug 18, 2012



wizard on a water slide posted:

13-2 has some issues with things like difficulty curve, but it's way more of an RPG than 13 was in terms of like... stuff to find, systems to experiment with, and options. The core gameplay is nearly identical. If your biggest problem with 13 was that it felt like a series of hallways intermittently broken up by cutscenes, it may be worth playing.

Lightning Returns is pretty much its own animal entirely, and is the best game of the three. You should try it.

The story stuff in both is absolutely wackadoo batshit insanity that makes 13 look restrained and well-considered by comparison.

I'm not going to buy them. I got older and the series isn't for me anymore. Instead of writing a million paragraphs about that I'm just going to accept it.

But man, I still have no idea how people got any enjoyment out of FF13. 90% of it was boring corridors with incomprehensible cutscenes. Even the level up system was a corridor. There were normal battles in that game that took 15 minutes for a 5-star time with absolutely no tactical decision making in them once you figured them out. It was just so awful.

Alris
Apr 20, 2007

Welcome to the Fantasy Zone!

Get ready!


I enjoy asking people who liked FFX but hated FFXIII how a game all about running down a single corridor for 40 hours with painfully unlikeable characters and shitawful side content is good while another game dedicated to running down a single corridor for 40 hours with painfully unlikeable characters and barely any side content is bad just to see their flustered justification. XIII is everything bad about X concentrated to its purest form. Both games suck, and X's only saving grace is it gave us X-2 which revelled in its stupidity and let you beat the poo poo out of a Tidus lookalike (and didn't have the OG model until the very end anyway).

Both games are still better than anything with the words "Kingdom Hearts" in the title.

e: and if Xenoblade Chronicles had chocobos, changed the Nopon race to be called Moogles, had a name change to Final Fantasy XV and a Square-Enix logo on startup, it would have sold way more and been hailed as revolutionary and a return to form. Goddamn that was an amazing game.

Jenner
Jun 5, 2011
Lowtax banned me because he thought I was trolling by acting really stupid. I wasn't acting.


guts and bolts posted:

FF9 sucks because its fans are pretentious insufferable twats, its characters are bad, and its story formulaic.

Wowzers. I don't know what to do about your negative view of fans of the game. I like to believe that people like a thing genuinely and for good reason. I don't presume they feign affection for something for some kind of status. But they might? I don't know, I'm okay with people liking and defending most things I don't like. I'll disagree with them and give my reasons but ultimately media is superficial and subjective.

As such, I don't judge or begrudge the people who like FF7 and FF13 because they usually have good reasons like, Sephiroth is cool and gosh I sure do love corridors. ()

So you're just as welcome to disagree and dissent with my assessment of why FF9 is actually quite good:

First off, Final Fantasy has a formula that they seem to follow: There is always the heroes, there is usually a princess or other female royalty/VIP (often named Sara), there's often orbs or crystals, there's often an evil empire/corporation, and either the world is in danger of conquest/destruction and only you can save the world or humanity is in danger of extinction/enslavement and only you can save humanity.

Most FFs stick to the formula. As such, FF stories are rarely complex or grandiose. They are not high literature. They're meant to be entertaining and usually are.

So FF9's story of a princess' uncle hiring a group of thieves masquerading as a theater troop to kidnap his niece so that her mother doesn't suck all the summons out of her to use as WMDs to conquer the world is not exceptional. But it's not bad.

The fact that the mother turbo fucks Burmicia, Cleyra and Lindblum and that poo poo sticks is pretty great.

The fact that the villain is an arms trader is pretty neat.

The fact that the man behind the man is trying to save his world at the cost of yours is a good twist.

The twist that Zidane and Kuja are members of the same manufactured race? Eh okay.

The end boss out of nowhere? Silly.

Regarding the characters? I like them. Only Quina and Amarant stood out as being unexceptional. Eiko was obnoxious but she has a good arc.

Vivi and Steiner are the best. Freya is good too!

And FF9 was a really pretty game.

It's music is the best.

FF9 was good, drat it.

quote:

Tiers

6 > Tactics > 9 > 5 > 4 > 10 = 12 > 8 > 7 > 13
The rest are not even worth listing.

guts and bolts posted:

You give up on FF9 because the game is mechanically lifeless and has nothing fun about it whatsoever except watching Vivi turn colors in Trance mode

Nah, but the combat does take too long.

quote:

FF7 is special because all the characters are suffering.

So am I playing this lovely game, lol.

But seriously, having all the PCs with you because life is pain or whatever is all well and good (look at Planescape Torment!) But I like characters that care so that I can care. That's why I like Barrett, Tifa, Red 13, and Aeris. They care. They often seem like the only ones that care.

quote:

DREAMS ARE DEAD AND EVERYTHING SUCKS

*glances about uncertainly* If you say so....

If I wanted to experience a reality where everything is poo poo and nothing matters I'd just live my loving life. I play video games to have fun, enjoy myself, and escape that.

But there is a certain value to reminding and telling people that everything is suffering.

The truth is I'm just not seeing it. I'm just not seeing how suffering and failure and broken dreams is driving every character.
Vincent? Definitely.
Tifa? I mean, I saw it more as, "when I was a child I wanted this childish thing. But I'm grown up now and I'm gonna save myself."
Red 13? His big issue seems to be that he thinks his dad was a coward who betrayed his people. It doesn't have anything to do with him. What dreams of his are shattered?
Cid? Awful human being, just wants to go to space, sure I'll accept that as a broken dream.
Barrett? Wanted something else, didn't get it, scarred by it and making the best of it. He's haunted and agonized though so sure suffering and shattered dreams here too.
Cait Sith? I still have no idea what this guy wanted and why he was here. As far as I can tell he literally exists just to betray you. What the gently caress is his broken dream?
Yuffie? You mean to tell me that Yuffie is sad because her country is a tourist trap hell hole? It has ALWAYS been that way. Her dream was to fix it? How? By stealing all your materia and being a brat? I'm not buying it.
Aeris? What was her broken dream? She seemed to just love the planet and take her responsibility as a Cetra seriously.
Cloud? Was Cloud's dream to be awesome SOLDIER man McCool? And so he faked it until he maked it? But it's not real and so broken dreams? Feh alright.

So... I see Cloud, Barrett, Cid, Vincent for sure. Maybe Tifa but I am skeptical. The rest are real slim. 4-5/9, that's not bad. It's not all of them though. Help me out here?

quote:

I don't know how to summarize this without being disrespectful because you appear to be saying that FF7 has a deeper layer than what's on the tin and the character arcs deeply influence the game and that FF4 does not and is only about Cecil's search for redemption. This isn't true.

FF4's characters each had character development that had a prominent role in the story beyond just Cecil's redemption. And their plot lines weren't all about failure, suffering, and the death of dreams (which I see as a good thing, I like a little diversity.)

Almost every Final Fantasy character has a back story that you address in the game and that influences the game. The stuff going down with the characters is prominent in the games. Every games' characters are motivated by that back story. Suffering as the universal binder is not so special. But It's neat and I approve.

In regards to FF4 being just what you see on the tin and no layers whereas FF7 is different? I'm not so sure. I'm just not seeing FF7 as any more complex than FF4. I've been replaying the game off and on all day and this deep profound misery you talk of seems really understated so far. Again, I'm not sure what I want or need from this game to get this message that you are saying it has. All the characters endlessly agonizing and moaning and groaning over their traumas sounds like a really lovely not fun game. I guess the occasional, "Ugh, this sucks, what can I do about it?" Or "Ugh, this sucks, I'm gonna do something about it!" Would be nice. Barrett seems to be the only character like this.

FF4 is about doing terrible things, turning traitor, seeking redemption, getting betrayed, with dwarves, a revolving door of friends getting killed, a hunt for vengeance and fighting a boss out of nowhere after going to the moon (at least Cecil gets into space, eat poo poo Cid!) So it's not a complicated game. Neither is FF7. Which is about joining a terrorist organization, sticking it to the man, a friend getting killed, a hunt for revenge, getting betrayed, being a loving liar, having a meltdown and saving the world from a known enemy.

I guess in the way that the FF7 protagonist is an unreliable narrator who succumbs to the angst and has to be pulled out of the void whereas other FF protagonists largely remain stalwart and hopeful in the face of adversity kind of sets it apart. (But I remind you, Celes tries to kill herself in the WoR. The difference is you can't stop Cloud from breaking down, but you can prevent Celes' breakdown.) So I'll give you that. It is kinda cool to see someone just give in to the suck and be resolved by good support and friendship. The power of friendship, corny and hamfisted as it is, is one of my favorite things about anime and JRPGs.

It's all just so subjective, though. I'm really not seeing anything that makes FF7 qualitatively better than FF6 (I'm not so sure about where it stands in relation to FF4 now though so congratulations.) To me, there is just no comparison. FF6's characters actively suffer, struggle, and agonize. They convey it better to me than FF7's characters. The FF6 characters lose hope, doubt themselves and they bounce back just like the FF7 characters. If we just reduce it down which characters are better FF6 features nobody particularly objectionable but FF7 features a character that emotionally and physically abuses his romantic partner and no one calls him out on it so... yeah.

quote:

Cloud is an interesting protagonist.

When?
Seriously when is Cloud an interesting protagonist?

So again, I am playing back through the game right now. We are currently climbing up the stairs in the Shinra building because it's funnier than the other option. I'm enjoying hearing the characters quip and chat to each other. I am actually seeing a bit of personality from Cloud as he commiserates with his friends. If this keeps up and he keeps engaging I'll drop this argument but I don't remember that being the case (we shall see.)

Still, I have to say that this is the most fun I have had in this game so far and I am literally just climbing stairs and listening to Tifa and Barrett complain. (Maybe FF13 was right about the corridors!)

quote:

FF7 good because the plot is pretty good, the characters are good, the Materia system is amazing, and Limit Breaks are good. Good narrative elements + great mechanical elements = a good game, generally, but 7 also has a really good score and had, at the time, groundbreaking graphics. It's a Good Game™

Plot good? Nah. Kinda wonky, fed to you in chunks, isn't terrible. I don't think it's good.
Characters good? 4 of them are (one dies.) And I really don't like one character.
Materia system good? Yes. Needing the all materia is bunk though.
Limit breaks good? Yes. You have no idea how much I love shooting a dog at people.
Narrative elements good? I recall being mologued at by Hojo, Rufus, and Sephiroth. Lectured by Aeris and her mom (and Bugenhagen.) Big heaps of plot dumped down on me from nowhere. But I'm playing the game again so we'll see.
Mechanical elements good? They're not bad!
Music good? Music great!
Graphics good? For their era? Most definitely.

You don't need my permission but it's okay, it's okay that you like this thing. There are many good things about it. I just don't think it's as good as you think it is. I'm not seeing what you've seen but that's all on me. I'll keep looking for it.

I'm not sure you'll change my mind but I'm giving FF7 a chance. I'm not sure if I'm trying to change your mind. My intent is only to disagree and show why I don't like it and think it's crap. I don't think I'm trying to convince you to not like it and think it's crap. If it seems like that, I'm sorry.

It's okay. We can like our trash garbage anime games for children.

No. 1 Apartheid Fan
Aug 20, 2005



Aside from the completely different (arguably totally opposite) battle system, X really is a prototype of XIII. I didn't notice or remember that until I replayed X on the HD remake, and I saw exactly what you were talking about.

Also it has the worst combination of unskippable cutscenes and bad cutscene checkpoints in the franchise. Don't die to Yunalesca.

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chumbler
Mar 28, 2010



Switchblade Switcharoo

How is Sazh an unlikable character?

Also it feels like the side quest writers for Lightning Returns were totally different from the main quest writer (and they probably were). The side quests actually often deal with the whole theme of the last days before the end of the world and everyone being undying, and they are often interesting, while the main quest is just lunacy.

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