Blogging Final Fantasy

Can two nerds do it? Take the most epic journey across the Final Fantasy Universe ever? Can they avoid being knocked down in I, find the first Chocobos in II, play the long, lost forgotten cousin III, cleanse their soul in IV, save the crystals in V, blabber on and on about how great VI is, and then go beyond, into the world of 3D, emo, and fantastically absurd hair? Read, and find out!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

December ??, 2008

...a date that shall live... in return....amy.

Edit: Sorry folks, the current political situation in Bangkok has mucked up Matola's trip -- specifically my return to the States. More on this as it develops

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Sorry for the delays, folks! We're coming back, though. I'm going to figure out how to make my PS2 play, and we're taking on that long haired bastard!

Lots of love,
Matty

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Light Warriors? Not anymore, mothafucka!

Hey, you guys! Isn't it great that Squaresoft has gotten all progressive with this game? They love the environment, they LOVE the gays (getting to that soon!), and... hey! Look! A black guy! And he's always there to make some sort of sassy, hip comment that is totally off the chain. Look, he knows how to tell it to the Shinra:




And why the %$#@! should he bother with that bitch Jenova? He's got bigger fish to fry.



Barret knows the value of some well-placed punctuation.







So we at Blogging Final Fantasy salute you, Barret. You have broken the Final Fantasy color barrier, if not the anime trope that one character per anime must have at least one mechanical limb.



We shall overcome, my friends. We shall overcome.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

If you tag it, they will come

I'm in the middle of midterms, so the FF7 playing has been a little bit slow. I'm in the middle of writing up another post for you guys, but I should be writing a paper about how there are salesmen in both "The Iceman Cometh" and (surprise!) "Death of a Salesman." I know, super profound, right?

So, in the meantime, here's something I found amusing. It's a list of all the various keywords that people have used to find our blog. I've highlighted my favorites-- those which are either the most hilarious, or the most revolting, or some combination of both..




3230.48%blogging final fantasy

76.67%final fantasy sex

32.86%final fantasy

32.86%blogging zelda

21.90%welcome to the town of assaram

21.90%oh my hero so far away now

10.95%terra orphanage ff6

10.95%conclusion of my hero

10.95%rosa final fantasy slutty

10.95%kefka

10.95%ff6 endings

10.95%final fantasy ladies

10.95%final fantasy vi shadow/relm

10.95%oh my hero so far away no

10.95%matola

10.95%wow to get dancer on ff11

10.95%10 sex hot

10.95%final fantasy x-death fucking tree

10.95%ff6a magicite list

10.95%oh my hero opera

10.95%final fantasy sex games

10.95%final fantasy vii cash cow

10.95%poopenschaft

10.95%final fantasy plots

10.95%final fantasy the journey continues fan

10.95%ff2j best black mage setup

10.95%blogging ff

10.95%intra species sex

10.95%bloggingdq

10.95%oh my hero

10.95%16 bit rpgs

10.95%final fantasy 7 hot sex

10.95%tecmo secret of the stars

10.95%conclusion about molest

10.95%ff4/ odin / snes

10.95%how to make leo on ff6a gba ff6

10.95%oh my hero, so far away now

10.95%oh my hero, so far away now.

10.95%opera ff3 song oh my hero

10.95%final fantasy rip game

10.95%ramza infp

10.95%ffvi opera oh my hero

10.95%ff6 secret gau scene

10.95%ff6 secret scenes

10.95%game plot

10.95%opera lyrics ffvi

10.95%sabin figaro girlfriend

10.95%hero so far away now smile

10.95%ff7 character list

10.95%j2e ff4 translation

10.95%fantasy ladies fi

10.95%ff7 restore

10.95%celes suicide snes

10.95%molestation fantasy

10.95%fantasy sheap

10.95%different endings for final fantasy 6

10.95%final fantasy 16 bit

10.95%final fantasy 2 translation errors

10.95%ff7 endi

10.95%ff7 added effect

10.95%ff7 added effect odin

10.95%sketch bug gau



You know what this means, guys! More suggestive tagging and titling of posts, from here on in. We've got to attract that coveted sheap fetishist demographic, after all.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Oh, FF7.

This game brings back memories. Did I tell you it's the first Final Fantasy that I ever played?




Starting up this game, the thing you immediately notice is how incredibly vast and immersive the world seems. I mean, many of the earlier games have large and detailed worlds, too. But Squaresoft uses this opening sequence to whack you across the face, grab you by the hair, and shove you headlong into the grungy, polygon-peopled, and vaguely 80s-inspired universe of FF7, in a way that, frankly, wasn't possible for the non-3D games to accomplish.




Let's take a look, shall we? This is the opening of FF6. (A fan translation, but similar enough.)







It certainly sets a mood. As you may recall, that mood was a vast departure from that of FF5. It's something darker, something with a tad more of the emo to it. But this intro is a real 16-bit device, from the days when graphics could ony tell so much, and the entire story had to fit into a single game cartridge.




Listen, nobody loves FF6 as much as I do. But let's be honest. This is an exposition-fest. Sure, it's a very ominous exposition-fest, and the graphics are gorgeous in their own way. (Which is to say, in a different way than FF7's.) But you, the player, are the observer here. As much as I hate to say it, you have to put a little bit of effort into immersing yourself in the gameworld of FF6. That probably accounts for the big ideological gap between the nerds who favor FF6, and those who favor FF7.




You'll notice the difference in this movie. You start out with the stars, right? That's because stars are in space. You know what else is in space? The Planet. You'll be hearing a lot about this over the course of the game.







Anyway, so the stars are swirling around, and stuff. When all of a sudden, you realize they're not stars, but the embers of some bizarre, green furnace, and they are illuminating the face of a lovely young polygonal woman with enormous, anime-shaped eyes. "Dee doo dee," goes the music, "Dee doo dee doo." Oh hey, the bundle of polygons in a pink dress is being cut off by a motorcycle, and then another one, and there are a bunch of people around! That's because we're in the bustling, futuristic, dystopian metropolis of Midgar! A city with plenty of attractions, like a billboard for "Loveless," the latest fragrance from Elizabeth Taylor. Or the "Goblin's Bar," where presumably the city's ethnic minority of D&D characters meet up to join parties and plan adventures.




When the camera zooms all the way out, to focus on a wide shot of Midgar with the Final Fantasy logo superimposed over it, you get a huge sense of how vast this world is. The people have disappeared entirely. Then the zoomy camera, because it's not done screwing with you yet, zooms in AGAIN, this time on a slightly different zone in the city, to focus on the incoming train that is bearing Our Hero and his cadre of lovable eco-terrorist pals.




You'll notice that this approach really underlines the differences between FF6 and FF7. In the former game, you are actively discouraged from taking on the role of a particular character, with any PC able to assume the party's lead position, and the narrative emphasis shifting from Terra, to Locke, to Celes, or to any amount of side characters during the optional quests in the game's second half. In FF7, you play as Cloud, and the game really emphasizes this. You choose many of his dialogue options; side-characters compliment his manly skills (or his feminine beauty, as we will soon see.) But since Cloud is "our" guy, we tend to believe that what he tells people about himself is true, even when his story is strange or hard to understand. After all, Crono would never lie to us! The crux of the game's plot hinges on the player's identification with Cloud.




That's why opinion on FF7 tends to be polarized-- your enjoyment of the game will largely depend on how well you tolerate the distant, chill, sometimes rude, almost alwys emo antihero at the center of the game. Not everybody loves FF6 the way that Matty and I do, but only rarely will you find somebody that really hates the game. (More often, you will find people that have never played it, because they are n00bs and won't play 2D games.) That's because they will usually find at least one character who they can identify with, out of the main cast, and they will never have to play very much as a character that they can't stand.





Anyway, enough blabbing about the intro. Let's get started! There are always new things about FF7 that I discover each time I play. For instance, did you know that Texas exists in FF7? It's true. They make beer there.









Aww, and look who has her own little liquor license. It's Marlene, you guys! How cute.






One thing that I remembered all too well was this goddamn whore of a minigame. You call this fun, Hironobu?!









SUCK IT.









Or, as the characters in this game are so fond of saying, $%#^@&! you, you &^%$#@*&^ (*&@#$)!~@#(*&%!.




Love,
Kammy

PS: I'm back, you guys!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

I love you guys!

And I haven't forgotten you.... but my laptop broke! That's why I haven't been playing FF7/posting amazing pix. Thankfully, I've just got a temporary setup going with a monitor hooked up to my laptop, so there is light at the end of the tunnel of non-postingness.

So, you know, I'm not dead or anything.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

We're back in one week!


So, loyal readers, since Kamarile needs time to get back to college so she can actually play too, and with my fears of getting too far ahead of her, we'll be back in a week so she can start the journey with me!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

FF7: Sticking to traditions

So, one of the great things about FF7, to me, at least, is how it sticks to the classic traditions that came before it.    Take yourself back to FF6, and the battle with Whelk.   FF7 starts you out battling a Scorpio-bot, with an identical battle mechanic.   Attack when it's <blank>in, and it'll <blank> ur <blank>z.

But it doesn't just stop with repeating battle mechanics.   In the proud tradition of Final Fantasy...
3 - WhelkPt1 4 - Whelkpt2

7 - hoyay There's hoyay.

And, wow.  I'd forgotten just how hoyay this game is.   I know that we (perhaps over-)use this tag a lot, but you have to admit, when you can take the time in the middle of the heist to comment to one of the womenfolk in your team of loveable terrorists that she looks hot, just like a dude would?

Hmm.

I've commented in the past that every time I play these games, I learn something new.   One thing I learned was that after having recently watched the entire season of Firefly (and Serenity), is that I can't resist referring to our wacky hijinks on the rail as 'The Train Job' while sing-songingly reminding myself that there's no place I can't be, since I found Serenity.

...erm, yes.  Anyhoo, back to the game.

 

I mean, FF7 is pretty awesome, if for nothing more than how immature the script will allow you to be, sometimes, and all the things that seem 'risky' and 'edgy' after the prior games.  

What other game will let you call a female love interest a 'slum drunk'?
What other game will let you play the part of a terrorist faction that blows up power plants?

I'm actually vaguely of the opinion that, were someone to try to pitch this game now, that it wouldn't make it, what with the whole interactive terrorist module. 

And, just in closing -- I do have a 'Cloud, you set the bomb.' screenshot.  I'll abuse a lot of memes, but that's one that I'll respectfully decline to touch.

Kamarile will probably be all over it, though.
9 - SlumDrunk

Thursday, January 3, 2008

FF7: It Starts

So, not too long after my original post, I've swapped out my laptop with one from the office, and I've taken my PS2 and stood it on its edge, so that it stands proud and tall, like a... proud... tall... thing.  Both of my problems are momentarily resolved.

0103191035 Now, back to Final Fantasy VII.   Welcome to splash screens that are relevant to the plot in some way, shape, or form.   And you get two of them, for the price of one.   There's the classic, black screen, and then there's the actual, in game screen, which shows how gorgeous the game is.

And it actually looks a lot prettier than I remember, but that might be because I'm playing it on a quarter of a tiny 12" laptop screen, instead of a massive 32" screen.

Oh well.
 0103191242

The game hasn't changed much from the classic formula, really.   You're a character with a mysterious past (this time called 'Ex-SOLDIER' instead of ????????).   You'll travel in a party of no more than three, and you'll notice that everyone looks vaguely more people-like, and that the game is probably one of the prettiest you'll see, considering the time that it came out.

The things we'll sacrifice?   People are a bit less expressive.    Everyone's very polygonal, (though I don't know if you'll notice that in the screenshots), so a lot of how feelings and emotions are conveyed are through music, which, of course, you don't have, as this is a blog of pictures and words.   This is really unfortunate, considering how expressive sprites could be in FF6, which was enhanced by appropriate music.

FF7 is really a bit of a mixed bag in those terms.   It gains a lot from new technology, but it loses a lot because of it.   That'll probably be the theme of the blog for this game, at least for me.   It's a great game, but is it really better than any other Final Fantasy?

Stay tuned.
0103191418

Seven Years (is unkind on a PS2)

So, I go to launch my PS2 to play a little FF7 and start the blog for it, and notice two things:

1)  The Gamebridge I bought doesn't show up right on my PC, which makes screenies difficult.

2)  ...Disc.  Read.  Error.

With almost every game I put in, too.   Sad, sad tidings.   I'm going to take it apart and try to clean the lens, more on this as it develops.

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