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Messages - WarpRattler

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Video Game Chat / Re: Final Fantasy
« on: August 14, 2015, 02:38:01 AM »
You don't need to be crazy to play NES FF1. Just patient.

The problem with the FF1 remakes is that by removing anything weird or different in the combat, you're left with an aggressively average game, something that could've been made as someone's first RPG Maker project. We'd complain if pretty much any other game had its guts ripped out in this fashion, so why is it okay for FF1?

Video Game Chat / Re: Final Fantasy
« on: August 12, 2015, 06:00:17 PM »
Square Enix's RPG catalogue outside of Final Fantasy contains some absolutely amazing, imaginative, and just plain cool games, far moreso than the Final Fantasy series itself could ever provide. Outside of the context of this thread, I'd recommend titles like Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together, several Dragon Quest games, EVO: The Search for Eden, Chrono Trigger, Parasite Eve, The 3rd Birthday, NieR, and The Last Remnant without a second thought.

Video Game Chat / Re: Final Fantasy
« on: August 12, 2015, 07:47:05 AM »
Final Fantasy XIII is a good JRPG that wouldn't have garnered nearly as much hate if it hadn't borne the Final Fantasy name. I don't recommend it as an entry point to the series, mainly because the story has relatively little in the way of traditional Final Fantasy concepts, but also because it has two direct sequels.

Final Fantasy XII is a really interesting game, but it doesn't get truly good unless you play Final Fantasy XII International: Zodiac Job System, which revamps several of the core gameplay systems, adds extra content, and most importantly, adds a job system in the form of additional license boards. This isn't available officially in English, of course, but if you can emulate PS2 games (shouldn't be too hard if you have an Intel processor made in the past five years or so) or have a modded or softmodded PS2, you can use a translation patch. I don't recommend this one as a starting point either; the gameplay is incredibly different from anything else in the series, and isn't a good indicator of whether or not you'd like Final Fantasy games. Also, as The Chef said, it's set in Ivalice, the world of Final Fantasy Tactics, and specifically set during the earlier part of the timeline with Final Fantasy Tactics Advance and Final Fantasy Tactics A2 (which features FF12 player characters Vaan and Penelo), so if you wanted the context of the world, you might want to play FFTA first, though it's certainly not necessary.

Final Fantasy X is a very easy starting point for the series and for JRPGs in general. The sphere grid's complexity builds slowly and eases you into full character customization, and the removal of the Active Time Battle system used throughout the SNES and PSX games means you have all the time in the world to figure out what you're going to do with its priority-based combat. The core plot is a love story between a traveling priestess and a time-traveling sportsball player, both of which are dealing with living up to the incredible legacies of their fathers, and the infamous laughing scene makes a lot more sense in context. It's also readily available on multiple platforms (all PlayStation, though), and not particularly expensive; you could pick up the PS3 version of Final Fantasy X|X-2 HD Remaster, which includes the game and its incredibly divisive sequel in their optimal International Version forms, on PSN this week for $15, and from what I've seen, used copies on PS2 tend to stay in the $10 range.

Final Fantasy IX is...a game I need to play more.

Final Fantasy VIII has weird combat and stats systems, a main character you seemingly aren't supposed to like, and a card game you can easily spend more time with than the actual game. Not recommended as a starting point.

Final Fantasy VII is massively overrated. It's also incredibly difficult to approach today, because early PSX graphics look like butt. If you can get past the visuals, it'll make a decent starting point, but it's certainly not the best game in the series by any means. (Also, while Final Fantasy VII is certainly the most milked Final Fantasy entry, it's mostly through cameo appearances in other games, like Ehrgeiz: God Bless the Ring.)

Final Fantasy VI is a game I don't care to play any time soon, and as such, I'm not qualified to speak on its qualities as a starting point for the series. I'd disregard the recommendation to play the SNES version, though! It's full of bugs that were fixed in later releases. The GBA version is probably your best bet.

Final Fantasy V is wonderful. In-depth job system, great cast, fun plot, and the introduction of recurring boss Gilgamesh - what's not to like?

Final Fantasy IV is a clear formative point for the series, and makes a great starting point as a result. I've cooled on it a bit, though, and don't recommend it as strongly as I might have if you asked me about it in 2012, when I first played it (via the stellar PSP remake, which I'd recommend over the DS remake).

Final Fantasy III is a bad game. Don't bother. (I'll get some flak for saying that, but really, it's like playing the original Street Fighter instead of Super Street Fighter II Turbo. If you want job-based Final Fantasy, play Final Fantasy V instead.)

Final Fantasy II is BP's favorite. He can speak more for why it's a good game than I can.

By modern standards, the original Final Fantasy is weird and difficult, seemingly for all the wrong reasons, but its remakes commit a far greater sin by removing any personality from the gameplay, leaving an incredibly generic JRPG. If you're going to play this one (which is an argument I'm not going to get into), do it right by playing the NES version.

Overall I'd recommend Final Fantasy X or Final Fantasy IV as a straightforward starting point, or Final Fantasy V if you want something that shows a bit more of the experimental side of the series.

Final Fantasy spinoffs are a much stranger beast, and could fill their own thread.

Forum Games / Re: The Add-One-Word Story Returns
« on: August 07, 2015, 05:45:38 AM »

Latest News / Re: Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time released in USA
« on: July 16, 2015, 08:27:37 AM »
I have yet to hear a compelling case for non-linearity in games that aren't specifically about exploration. It's much easier to balance a linear game, both in terms of gameplay design and in terms of narrative pace. As a developer, you don't have the same opportunities to pad out a game's length when you're shoving the player forward at all times instead of giving them the opportunity to meander, and you can focus your limited resources on improving the content that needs to be there (fixing bugs, improving mechanics that might not actually be that fun, tightening up the graphics on level three, and so on) instead of spreading yourself thin. Additionally, most of the examples of "non-linear" games that come up for JRPGs in particular tend to be "linear games with a couple of side paths with hidden treasure chests," like Final Fantasy X, which tells me a lot of people don't actually understand the concept they're defending.

Mario Chat / Re: Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Bros. Edition
« on: July 03, 2015, 06:40:04 AM »
Are you seriously complaining that you get a much longer second game as a bonus in a retail release that already costs $10 less than usual?

General Chat / Re: The HOPEFUL thread: Be happy here!
« on: June 25, 2015, 07:03:04 PM »
Also in figures, but not in "time to wait in line forever" figures, my first figure pack for Krosmaster Arena, a physical tabletop game based on a digital tabletop game in French multimedia company Ankama's MMOs Dofus and Wakfu, arrived today! I started off with the Dofus: The Treasures of Kerub set, with four characters from the Dofus TV show. I'm getting the Wakfu TV set (six figures) next, and then I'm getting Krosmaster Junior, a less expensive variant with slightly simplified rules, four exclusive figures, and full compatibility with the full game. My girlfriend and I have been watching Dofus and Wakfu TV shows and playing Wakfu itself, and if we enjoy Krosmaster Junior as well, I'll go ahead and spend $60 for the full Krosmaster Arena base game.

Mario Chat / Re: Creeping Graphical Sameyness
« on: June 12, 2015, 12:02:43 PM »
There's a good bit of truth to what Sqrt2 says. From a game design standpoint, recognizable and consistent silhouettes are more important than the sort of "uniqueness" discussed in this thread. This is a big part of why alternate outfits in games like Street Fighter IV are a bad thing for competitive players; when you have costumes that completely change a character's silhouette and muddy up otherwise distinctive animations, it becomes much harder to visually read a character.

That said, there's no problem with having distinct designs within different Mario sub-series, especially since significantly different designs can function in different ways (compare biped and quadruped varieties of Dry Bones).

Video Game Chat / Re: You're a squid now (you're a kid now)
« on: May 30, 2015, 04:36:53 PM »

Video Game Chat / Re: Beyond Good & Evil HD?
« on: May 19, 2015, 08:24:21 PM »
Just play the PC version. The HD rerelease on XBLA and PSN has all the same technical issues of the older releases, and doesn't offer any advantages over the PC version that also happens to go on sale all the time.

Video Game Chat / Re: E3 Thread: 2015 Edition
« on: May 19, 2015, 07:16:50 AM »
Mario Kart 8 DLC, Smash Bros. DLC, Splatoon DLC, Yokai Watch, new Zelda trailer, Star Fox trailer (and maybe release date if it's still planned for 2015), Xenoblade X English trailer and release date, Fire Emblem if English trailer.

General Chat / Re: The HOPEFUL thread: Be happy here!
« on: April 09, 2015, 02:45:41 PM »
No, LEGO Skylanders.

General Chat / Re: The HOPEFUL thread: Be happy here!
« on: April 07, 2015, 10:59:30 AM »

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