Board 8 > Andy plays Final Fantasy VI

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Page List: 1, 2, 3, 4
andylt
12/29/20 2:28:21 PM
#1:


I - II - III - IV - (TAY) - V - Final Fantasy VI - VII - (VIIR - DoC - CC) - VIII - IX - X - (X-2) - XII - (RW) - XIII - (XIII-2 - LR) - XV - Tactics - (TCB)

*Progressive spoilers shall follow*

Between Xmas and my birthday I've gotten quite a few games these past few days, but instead of remaining paralysed by choice of which to play first I've decided to get back to my FF pilgrimage with VI Advance. The eBay guy I bought it from had his account deactivated so it's definitely a bootleg but V held up fine so fingers crossed!

Unlike V and Tactics I'm not 100% in the dark about VI, unfortunately thanks to it being much more famous there's a couple things I know. Namely Kefka being the big bad (this would be impossible to avoid tbf), and the fact that there's a World of Ruin in the back half, I'm guessing like a Light World/Dark World kinda thing. I know Terra is the main character (arguably?) and that she's pretty divisive here, and I've heard most of the cast's names here and there. That's about all though I think, so not too bad!

As always if there's anything I should know beforehand to do/not do or any major missable summon/sidequest/character etc please feel free to let me know. I'll try to keep my expectations in check as I know some people here don't really like this one but honestly I'm really looking forward to experiencing this supposed classic after being so impressed with V and Tactics!

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Slowly becoming a Final Fantasy aficionado. Next up: FFVI
Congrats to azuarc, Guru Champion 2020!
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LordoftheMorons
12/29/20 2:30:37 PM
#2:


Tag!

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Congrats to azuarc, GotD2 Guru champ!
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Murphiroth
12/29/20 2:30:54 PM
#3:


Tag for second best FF
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redrocket
12/29/20 2:49:28 PM
#4:


Tag

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It's like paying for bubble wrap. -transience on Final Fantasy: All the Bravest
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RaidenGarai
12/29/20 2:51:29 PM
#5:


Best game ever

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Epic Seven IGN ZeroThe13th
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Jakyl25
12/29/20 2:53:04 PM
#6:


Terra and Celes are co-mains

Their names are even thematically opposite for this reason
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Grand Kirby
12/29/20 2:55:37 PM
#7:


Incredible game. I can't wait

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Okay, I rolled a 14. What's that mean? Hsu
That you're a cheater. This is a 12-sided die. Chan
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mnkboy907
12/29/20 2:57:50 PM
#8:


There's often items to find if you check the clocks. It's something I imagine a lot of people never think to do.

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Change is weird.
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LordoftheMorons
12/29/20 2:58:28 PM
#9:


Jakyl25 posted...
Their names are even thematically opposite for this reason
I am feeling very dumb for never noticing this!

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Maniac64
12/29/20 3:03:22 PM
#10:


Man I never thought about how different 5 and 6 are as far as number of party members.

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"Hope is allowed to be stupid, unwise, and naive." ~Sir Chris
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pjbasis
12/29/20 3:05:37 PM
#11:


I mean the people who were actually in charge of crafting the themes of FFVI did not name her Terra though

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Leonhart4
12/29/20 3:50:02 PM
#12:


Oh hey, I can contribute to this one more.

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SeabassDebeste
12/29/20 4:39:48 PM
#13:


tag, one of my favorite games of all time
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yet all azuarc of all sorts are more or less capricious and unreliable - they live in the varying outer weather, and they inhale its fickleness
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WazzupGenius00
12/29/20 7:26:13 PM
#14:


Jakyl25 posted...
Terra and Celes are co-mains

Their names are even thematically opposite for this reason
Her name is Tina in Japan, so no

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Jakyl25
12/29/20 7:36:32 PM
#15:


Woolsey too clever then
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Metal_DK
12/29/20 8:05:53 PM
#16:


one of the best games ever made

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Casual Revolution 2007 - 2016
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MikeTavish
12/29/20 8:07:41 PM
#17:


Tag

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Formerly ff6man.
Azuarc won the guru! Congrats!
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mccheyne
12/29/20 8:50:19 PM
#18:


Tagging this. One of the best FFs, in my opinion!

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Not changing this sig until the Winnipeg Blue Bombers win the grey cup. Started Aug. 16/04
WINNIPEG BLUE BOMBERS 2019 GREY CUP CHAMPIONS!!
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MZero
12/29/20 9:24:47 PM
#19:


Tag

As a person of exquisite taste I'm sure you will enjoy it!

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MZero, to the extreme
I never saw azuarc coming, but he won the Guru!
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andylt
12/30/20 5:37:54 PM
#20:


...Could anyone truly be foolish enough to repeat that mistake?

Starting these playthroughs is always the hardest part, when I don't know the rhythm of the game yet or what to focus on etc. The first thing that strikes me here is how visually distinct the intro sequence is- it's all blacks and whites with a bit of brown for a while. Makes a big change from the friendly greens and blues we usually get. The spritework is also noticeably more advanced than V. The intro itself is good, the lore drop is easy to understand and not too heavy, I have actually seen the Magitek walking through snow thing before somewhere but it's still nice, strong presentation right from the start.

Biggs and Wedge (!) are imperial soldiers taking a puppet mage to awaken a frozen Esper in Narshe. The battle system seems pretty straightforward, notably we have Magitek attacks against the poor locals and the ATB seems slower than the others I've played lately, but the only notable gameplay addition here so far seems to be battles where you're surrounded on either side. After a very simple boss (see how they give the information on what not to do on the first boss in the correct order, VII?), our mage seems to have some connection with the Esper and Biggs and Wedge are disappeared from our plane.

Terra awakens in an old man's home (I really like the little character intro screens they're doing here), free of her mind control but without any memories, and I take an Elixir from the clock (thanks mnkboy!). She falls in a cave and has hazy memories of our soon to be main villain Kefka and Emperor Gestahl Sieg Heiling in front of a crowd. She's rescued by treasure hunter/thief Locke, who looks much buffer in his sprite than in his portrait, and a collection of 11 Moogles (do they have a collective noun?). It's a pretty simple minigame here but I appreciate the effort, and soon we're out of Narshe safely.

And then I go the wrong way and re-enter the town we're escaping from, oops. Thankfully I can exit anyway. There's a beginner's school I check out just in case there's new stuff in this game, and indeed there's a couple of new systems. Relics seem to be halfway between accessories and job abilities, and if I'm reading things right there seems to be a limit break system similar to VIII's. We head down to Figaro and meet inappropriately horny King Edgar, and run around to get some background info and a scene of his twin bro, Sabin. I'll try not to judge, Galuf was a bit flirty at first and I ended up really liking him, so hopefully Edgar won't be too tropey. There's also a wolfman in the dungeon, nice reference to V!

We get our proper introduction to Kefka, who claims that Terra is of no importance (probably shouldn't have sent the big guns to collect her if they wanted anyone to believe that), and Locke has a nice moment with Terra, who honestly responds to amnesia more realistically than most protagonists. Edgar feigns ignorance so Kefka orders the castle burned down, but tech whiz Edgar has presumably planned for this exact scenario and has the castle sink down into the sand. Pretty cool trick.

Kefka (who doesn't seem that smart so far!) orders us killed, and there is a very amusing exchange between Locke and Edgar when I have Terra use magic in battle. They're really driving it home how foreign magic is in this world, it's a great conceit. I like that she's the only one with MP, even. Controlling the chocobo is weird, I'm guessing it's in place of the dozens of airships V threw at the player right away. The V references continue with a turtle in a nearby healing spring, and in South Figaro we kinda sorta meet the amoral assassin Shadow. I buy some Sprint Shoes, and some guy won't talk to us unless we bring him cider but I don't seem to be able to pick up the bottle the other guy gives to him. Oh well.

Edgar gets signs of his brother in South Figaro and in a house up north, so we head east to find him. Auto-Crossbow seems to be very useful. We eventually meet not Sabin, but Vargas, the son of Master Duncan who murdered his own father out of jealousy. Neat to throw that backstory in for such a minor battle. The battle is still easy enough to not be worth noting, and Sabin jumps right out of a beat-em-up to help us out. It takes me a while to figure out Blitz, I was first pressing the inputs after clicking on Sabin (I know the game explicitly tells me not to do this but idk). Vargas dies and Terra admits she thought Sabin was a bear. Not the gay slang, an actual bear. How much damage did Kefka do to her brain?

We then meet Banon and the ragtag anti-imperial resistance group the Returners. Not a very catchy name, but ok. A nice quiet sequence ensues where Terra has to get serious and decide whether she wants to actively help out, chatting to everyone about their personal takes. Honestly I'm liking the whole cast here, Locke is probably my fav so far but Edgar has the best lines in letting her make her own mind up so as not to resemble the Empire. We actually get to make a decision, and I click yes figuring no will either loop us or head to a game over. We decide to head to Narshe, and word of attack on South Figaro forces our hand and we head down a rapids ride, sans Locke.

The crew here is untouchable: Sabin using Blitz, Edgar using Crossbow, Terra using Fire on all, and Banon Praying. We waltz through the ride and wind up meeting... Ultros. Oh god, I remember Ultros now from the B8 memes. And he actually is a rapey octopus, it wasn't just those high ground comics making him that way. Oh dear. He goes down after a bunch of dialogue, and Sabin jumps right in the ****ing river to try and finish him. Lol.

I then find out about another new gameplay mechanic, scenario selection! Oh this is cool, I love this kind of stuff. I save and leave it here but my plan is to go to Locke first (I'm assuming you get to do all 3), let me know if I definitely shouldn't or something. Before quitting I reload a hideout save to see what happens if I have Terra select no, and surprisingly the plot actually continues if you say no three times! I'm given the Genji Gloves (!) and honestly I might actually prefer the writing for this, Terra being a reluctant participant in the heroics is kinda more interesting! Really appreciate that they wrote this out.

Edit: Forgot to mention the music. I'm sure it'll come up many times but man it's all been great so far. Like, all of it. The boss theme is already stuck in my head.

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Slowly becoming a Final Fantasy aficionado. Currently playing: FFVI
Congrats to azuarc, Guru Champion 2020!
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BlackDra90n
12/30/20 5:52:39 PM
#21:


Tag. One of the best Final Fantasies.

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Grand Kirby
12/30/20 5:53:39 PM
#22:


andylt posted...
There's also a wolfman in the dungeon, nice reference to V!
Of course, for me (and a lot of others), it always feels like the other way around since it took so long for FFV to come out in English.

andylt posted...
Auto-Crossbow seems to be very useful.
Tools are like so ridiculously broken it's incredible. It one, of many, of the reasons Edgar is one of my favorite characters.

andylt posted...
t takes me a while to figure out Blitz, I was first pressing the inputs after clicking on Sabin
Nearly every single person has this problem, and you're playing the version where they didn't mess up the translation for the tutorial!

andylt posted...
I save and leave it here but my plan is to go to Locke first (I'm assuming you get to do all 3), let me know if I definitely shouldn't or something.
It doesn't really matter what order you do them in, although as far as length and how interesting the scenarios are: Terra's is the shortest and most unimportant, while Sabin's is the longest and, imo, most interesting.

andylt posted...
surprisingly the plot actually continues if you say no three times! I'm given the Genji Gloves (!) and honestly I might actually prefer the writing for this, Terra being a reluctant participant in the heroics is kinda more interesting! Really appreciate that they wrote this out.
There's lots of fun hidden stuff in the game like that. There's one random moment in this section where you can find a piece of paper and leave it lying around and Bannon will get ticked off at people not cleaning up their trash during his cutscene.

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Okay, I rolled a 14. What's that mean? Hsu
That you're a cheater. This is a 12-sided die. Chan
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mnkboy907
12/30/20 6:26:11 PM
#23:


I always do Terra last because I feel it segues best that way, but yeah it doesn't matter.

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Change is weird.
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redrocket
12/30/20 6:27:16 PM
#24:


andylt posted...
Edit: Forgot to mention the music. I'm sure it'll come up many times but man it's all been great so far. Like, all of it. The boss theme is already stuck in my head.

And the one definitive drawback to the GBA version is that the music is lower quality than the original.

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It's like paying for bubble wrap. -transience on Final Fantasy: All the Bravest
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Mr Crispy
12/30/20 6:34:09 PM
#25:


You might want to avoid leveling up somewhat, until you start getting good espers that give good bonuses when you level up. I mean the game isn't hard enough that you'd have to worry about min-maxing your stats, but it doesn't hurt to avoid going overboard on grinding. (Like there's an auto-leveling trick for the raft part since if you have battle cursor memory on it loops around until you select the other branch, but it doesn't really provide much benefit without the bonus from espers - well, I think Terra learns a couple spells naturally).

Anyway, missables.

uh let's see. I think you have to go out of your way to have Mog fight in the underwater battlefield background to learn one of his dances, because it becomes impossible to get later on. Not too important though.

One sidequest later on has you choose between a weapon and an esper. Looking up about the gba version quickly I guess there isn't any reason to not pick the esper now, since you can steal an infinite amount of the weapon version later on.

Another side quest has you "lose" an esper to get another esper.

It's possible to lose a certain character permanently iirc. Spoiler tagging this just in case but it should be relatively obvious what point I'm talking about when you get there.

When you're given the option to wait, wait until they show up. There's some more steps before they rejoin so it might not be obvious that you've did it right, but otherwise they will die.

oh yes before I forget. the X Zone spell can be used to kill some enemies that are normally immune to death like bosses, but you forfeit the drop. So you could potentially miss some unique boss drops if you go that route.

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The only certain death in the universe is Mother Hitton's Littul Kittons.
Not changing this line until I beat Seven Heroes (2/24/07) - Fulfilled 2/20/18
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redrocket
12/30/20 6:36:20 PM
#26:


Also, IIRC this is the first FF that had a soundtrack released in the US. A 3 disc set even! This shit was a fucking banger!

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Kefkas-Domain-Final-Fantasy-III-3-Disc-CD-Set-1994-Squaresoft-RARE/124454550995?hash=item1cfa11bdd3:g:wkgAAOSwkEJfvB66

TFW when the soundtrack to a SNES cart came on 3 CDs. LOL

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It's like paying for bubble wrap. -transience on Final Fantasy: All the Bravest
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mnkboy907
12/30/20 9:15:20 PM
#28:


Mr Crispy posted...
uh let's see. I think you have to go out of your way to have Mog fight in the underwater battlefield background to learn one of his dances, because it becomes impossible to get later on. Not too important though.

One of the new GBA boss fights gives you a second chance at getting this later on.

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Fiop
12/30/20 9:37:51 PM
#29:


andylt posted...
there seems to be a limit break system similar to VIII's
Technically, there are limit-like attacks called desperation attacks but its very rare for it to actually happen and its easy to go the entire game without seeing one. A character has to do a regular attack at critical health and then theres a small percentage chance of the desperation attack coming out. The desperation attack is usually just a stronger version of the characters attack, and not worth trying to get or anything.

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"Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude." - 1 Cor 13:4-5
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Grand Kirby
12/30/20 9:41:47 PM
#30:


Correction, it's easy to go through multiple playthroughs without ever seeing one.

I remember I got one by accident on like my fifth replay and was like "What the fuck is that? ...Oh yeah, there's limits in this game".

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Okay, I rolled a 14. What's that mean? Hsu
That you're a cheater. This is a 12-sided die. Chan
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SeabassDebeste
12/30/20 9:56:17 PM
#31:


you're really blasting through this game, wow! i love this intro segment of ffvi so much.

Grand Kirby posted...
I remember I got one by accident on like my fifth replay and was like "What the fuck is that? ...Oh yeah, there's limits in this game".

my friend and i had our mind blown when we finally saw TIGER CLAW

anyway yeah, i think this is my favorite soundtrack of all time. boss battle and terra's theme and kefka's theme are major highlights.

do sabin's route last and the other two in any order.
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yet all azuarc of all sorts are more or less capricious and unreliable - they live in the varying outer weather, and they inhale its fickleness
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andylt
12/30/20 10:04:31 PM
#32:


I don't like living dangerously, so I wouldn't be going for those desperations anyway.

Grand Kirby posted...
Tools are like so ridiculously broken it's incredible. It's one, of many, of the reasons why Edgar is one of my favorite characters.
Lol the first time I used it I figured it must be a consumable for how much damage it did. Before this post I was still wondering if it was using some meter I hadn't found yet, figured it couldn't just be that strong for an unlimited attack. Cool!

Nearly every single person has this problem, and you're playing the version where they didn't mess up the translation for the tutorial!
Good, I feel much better about misunderstanding the very simple directions for children now >_>

There's lots of fun hidden stuff in the game like that. There's one random moment in this section where you can find a piece of paper and leave it lying around and Bannon will get ticked off at people not cleaning up their trash during his cutscene.
Oh man I always love that kinda stuff in games, I often make a ton of saves just to experience as many variations of dialogue stuff as possible so I'll have to be creative with just 3 slots!

Also
Bannon
Bannon-banned

Mr Crispy posted...
...
Thanks for the tips about avoiding leveling, I'll try not to grind for a while. I'll also try to keep those vague missables in the back of my mind! I still somehow missed a summon in the V playthrough lol.

SeabassDebeste posted...
you're really blasting through this game, wow! i love this intro segment of ffvi so much.
Lol I like to get a big chunk done the first time I play RPGs so I can get into the mood of the world. It can become a problem, these playthrough topics actually help slow me down a bit sometimes as I think about how much I'll have to write about each session.

I can already tell the OST will be great, I liked V's a lot even with the GBA limitations. I think it helps that I take out headphones and just play it on the console speakers so I don't really notice whatever messiness they've got going on and just get the general vibe of the tunes.

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Slowly becoming a Final Fantasy aficionado. Currently playing: FFVI
Congrats to azuarc, Guru Champion 2020!
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A worlds envy
12/31/20 4:49:32 PM
#33:


Tag.

Glad you like it so far.

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"I am your guru lord and master! Kneel before me!"-Advokaiser
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andylt
01/01/21 4:05:48 PM
#34:


SeabassDebeste posted...
do sabin's route last and the other two in any order.
Whoops, missed this line before >_>

We start with a stealth quest of sorts in South Figaro. Locke has been busy hindering the imperials... somehow, I don't think we're told what he actually did, and now it's time to leave. This mainly involves stripping a bunch of innocent people and wandering around town. It's a fun sequence, I like when these games break up the fighting with stuff like this. The first time I inadvertently stole the merchant's clothes made me lol. The bits of lore placed around town are almost entirely to help us progress through the quest, I don't talk to the soldiers as a merchant or Locke out of fear of screwing the whole thing up. We do get told about a lady general who turned traitor and is locked away in this town somewhere though. Intriguing!

IDK where I was supposed to find the real password, but after the guy forgot what it was and clicking around that room didn't illuminate me any, I just guessed from the three options. It was the last one I guessed, of course. After a bit more running around we are introduced to Celes, a name I recognise. I am immediately intrigued by her, a turncoat general from the empire is not what I would've expected and honestly female playable FF characters don't usually get given this kind of backstory. Also intriguing is that I quickly learn she is a mage. Locke doesn't react in the slightest, guess he's used to it now. Their brief lines together are cool (she reminds Locke of someone), and I am looking forward to learning more about her. Best line option here: Stealing is wrong! I didn't pick it but lol at the idea of Locke choosing this, guess he really isn't a thief.

I forget to equip the two and scrape through our first battle, oops, but after that it's smooth sailing. We rest up in the bed I guess Sabin was using (I like that you can just sleep in strangers' beds), and not knowing where to go I try east to head back to the hideout. The mountains are blocked off by imperials (apparently they count as a town), so we head back west through the noisier tunnels now and eventually face Tunnel Knight. I was planning to ask what on earth Runic does but the game gives me a perfect tutorial here, it honestly seems pretty OP if you can spam it every turn to negate magic damage to almost zero!

Next up I pick Sabin. He meets up with Shadow, who is much more friendly than he was with Terra and co. There's an aged man and a very speedy chocobo merchant around here, but other than that not much. It seems that Shadow's dog sometimes counterattacks in battle for a lot of damage, Angelo eat your heart out. There goes yet another mechanic I thought VIII came up with!

In the imperial camp we are introduced to friendly "ethical" imperial general Leo (he seems nice but he's still on board with whatever Gestahl is doing...) and see more of Kefka's kefkaness. I'm glad they're not hiding that Kefka is clearly the central antagonist here, he has his own theme and we barely see the others, guess I wasn't spoiled after all. In Doma Castle we get our latest party member Cyan, a noble foreign retainer with a weird Bushido system. Kefka poisons the water supply (honestly a pretty savvy move), and I guess it's super poison cos everybody there dies immediately except Cyan and one guard he's with (do they just not drink water?). The King dies, but it's Cyan's presumable wife and young son dying that catch me off guard. Oof. Poor guy! This game really wants to have everyone be alone with no family, I am worried for the Figaro bros. Also very annoyed that Cyan doesn't open the chest in his room >_>

Cyan goes berserk mode and slaughters a bunch of imperials (literally, we can't control him in battle for a while) and eventually calms down and joins our group. Shadow and Cyan didn't take much convincing to come along with Sabin, really. There's no EXP gained in this sequence at all, and we get another brief time of annihilating people with Magitek armour. Onto the world map (Have I mentioned that I love the world map theme? It's so so good, maybe even better than VII's first) we head to Narshe via Phantom Forest. I leave it here for now. Monk + Assassin + Samurai, I guess this is the cool kid's club.

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Slowly becoming a Final Fantasy aficionado. Currently playing: FFVI
Congrats to azuarc, Guru Champion 2020!
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Grand Kirby
01/01/21 4:24:09 PM
#35:


In the original version the soldiers beat Celes while she was held captive. It was censored out in the re-release.

I pretty much never use Runic for whatever reason. Probably because Celes can cancel the spells your party does as well. In retrospect, there are probably a few battles where it's really useful I just never bothered.

andylt posted...
The first time I inadvertently stole the merchant's clothes made me lol.
"It's a little tight, but the price was right" is a favorite line.

Same with "'Wait' he says... do I look like a waiter?"

Also, in the next dungeon be sure to use Sabin's Meteor Strike move against the boss. No real reason, just because it's fun.

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Okay, I rolled a 14. What's that mean? Hsu
That you're a cheater. This is a 12-sided die. Chan
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LordoftheMorons
01/01/21 5:14:47 PM
#36:


I was gonna ask if you meant Suplex, but I guess they renamed it Meteor Strike? I dont remember that at all!

But yes, definitely do that!

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Grand Kirby
01/01/21 5:16:41 PM
#37:


Yeah. I said Meteor Strike to avoid any confusion since it's the GBA version.

But it will always be Suplex in my heart.

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Okay, I rolled a 14. What's that mean? Hsu
That you're a cheater. This is a 12-sided die. Chan
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colliding
01/01/21 7:03:08 PM
#38:


best game and the gba version is the way to go

the snes translation will always be my favorite but gba has a lot of cool things about it

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while you slept, the world changed
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andylt
01/02/21 5:20:09 PM
#39:


The Phantom Forest has a cool aesthetic, and a camera angle that isn't completely top down! One of the most surprising things about this game so far is how far the graphics advanced since V. Anyway the forest is a short Lost Woods-esque location, but soon we arrive at the true dungeon, the Phantom Train. This place is cool, I am always a fan of train sequences in video games (and they had quite a run of trains with FF6-7-8 it seems!). This train is the equivalent of a ferry ride across the River Styx, taking souls to their final destination. It's a cool creepy setting, in theory more than practice.

We get a ghost pal in our party who can 'possess' (kill) enemies and then disappear. Cool. There's also a guy named Siegfried who claims to be a great swordsman, but I guess he accidentally picked up Excalipoor because he does single digit damage. He takes some treasure and flees, and I don't see him again. Hopefully I didn't miss another encounter with him on this train. We do have a difficult fight with an Apparition, who casts pretty strong spells in rapid succession. We barely take him down because I'm a fool and forget that undead enemies are vulnerable to Phoenix Downs in literally every game. Guessing that's what I was supposed to do there because there's two Phoenix Downs in nearby chests >_>

The ghosts start getting creepier, multiplying in number and chanting No Escape among other things as they surround us. Now this is more like it! Sabin jumps a few carriages ahead (I guess he was carrying the other two?) and we eventually flee them and have a nice meal. Actually four nice meals, I swap the party around to see the different dialogue. Shadow feeds Interceptor and our ghost pal remains silent but seems to enjoy its food.

At the front we stop the sentient train and have a boss fight on our hands. I use Meteor Strike as recommended and Sabin lifts the train into the air and slams it down for massive damage. Lol. I vaguely recall memes about this now that are making more sense to me. Sabin is living up to the lovable brute archetype pretty nicely! The train isn't actually a problem, and after punching it a bit it lets us off. We then have a pretty haunting scene of Cyan's wife and son boarding the train to the afterlife, giving him a bit of closure but in a pretty horrendous way. Oof. I lost our ghost pal before the boss fight so I don't know what would happen with him if he was still around.

Shadow leaves the party at the nearby waterfall :( but Cyan sticks with Sabin as we leap over the edge. Sabin just has no fear, huh. We wash up in Veldt, with a different overworld theme and tougher monsters. The boy who rescues us, Gau, appears in random battles hungry but feeding him the Green Cherries I have does nothing. The town nearby gives us some Dried Meat, new equipment and we send a letter to Maranda on behalf of an injured soldier. Gau accepts the meat and has a pretty lol sequence bouncing around with Sabin, and bonding with Sir Thou. Kappa shows up to teach me how to give Gau new abilities, but honestly he seems to have a pretty decent amount already. Is this our equivalent of a Blue Mage in this game? Pretty neat way to do it, imo! And more than a few Ayla vibes on this kid.

We find the diving helmet treasure Gau wants to give us after he messes with Sabin a little, and, yes, it's time to jump off another cliff into some water. Is 'Sabin jumping off of cliffs into water' the new 'Lenna poisoning herself to heal Wind Drakes'? We shall see. If this game ever gets remade in live action I hope they keep the utterly bonkers death-defying bouncing around everybody does. Anyway we travel underwater (sharing the helmet I guess), head through a cave, and wind up in a town I forgot to write down the name of. We get supplies, somebody gives us some lore about the aged man in the cabin- we did get some lore back in Veldt, but this time it's bigger. He threw out his baby he saw as a monster after his wife died in childbirth some 13 years ago. Was Gau the kid? Time shall tell!

This time we take a ship, I guess there was no river to jump into that would take us to South Figaro, and so ends this pretty lengthy fun scenario. I wanted to get through both today but this took longer than I thought, so Terra and co will have to wait! We've met like 9 proper party members according to the equip screen in the shops but there's still several empty spaces, this game is packed full of people huh.

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Slowly becoming a Final Fantasy aficionado. Currently playing: FFVI
Congrats to azuarc, Guru Champion 2020!
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MalcolmMasher
01/02/21 5:41:41 PM
#40:


If you try to keep the recruitable ghost around, it'll leave your party before you reach the locomotive. I usually have mine Possess the monster-in-a-box, 'cause Phoenix Downs feel unsporting. (Also, if you don't have Shadow, you can recruit a second filler ghost with even worse stats.)

You haven't missed anything involving Siegfried.

Gau doesn't have a clear equivalent, but I'd call him more of a Beastmaster than a Blue Mage.
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I don't like this duchy. Now, it's an adventurer.
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Lord Bob Bree
01/02/21 5:44:44 PM
#41:


Gau can be really powerful, but his randomness and the time needed to get him his best Rages keeps him from being broken.

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Congrats to azuarc for winning the 2020 GotD Contest
"I like goldfish." Godric
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SeabassDebeste
01/02/21 5:59:59 PM
#42:


this entire split party part is so good! i really like cyan's backstory segment. gau isn't really my cup of tea, but i also didn't get into rages
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yet all azuarc of all sorts are more or less capricious and unreliable - they live in the varying outer weather, and they inhale its fickleness
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Grand Kirby
01/02/21 9:04:52 PM
#43:




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Okay, I rolled a 14. What's that mean? Hsu
That you're a cheater. This is a 12-sided die. Chan
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LeonhartFour
01/03/21 12:29:12 AM
#44:


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pjbasis
01/03/21 12:40:42 AM
#45:


I love the Sabin arc, wish Locke's was as beefy, but it's fine.

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andylt
01/03/21 5:27:33 PM
#46:


I forgot that recruiting Shadow was even optional, I wonder why.

Well the Terra+Edgar+Banon scenario is indeed incredibly short, a quick rapids ride and they just wander into Narshe the same way Terra and Locke left before. In fact they don't even accomplish anything here, the townspeople don't believe them and it's only Locke and Celes who know that the Empire plans to attack. And it's not like that knowledge does any good because Kefka shows up right now anyway! Ah well, the gang is back together, with some new additions.

There are some conflicts and intriguing relationships brewing here- apparently Terra and Celes have known each other before, and Celes was injected with magic at a young age. Terra also asks her out of nowhere if it's possible for her to love anyone. Odd. Cyan does not take kindly to Celes's presence here, and the group has a brief debate about the Empire. Edgar claims that though the Empire is evil, not all of its citizens are. ...That's true, but Celes was a general! A high ranking officer who apparently laid waste to Maranda of her own free will! Seems a little inaccurate to equate her to a random civilian, or indeed to Terra, who was brainwashed and made a puppet of. I'm sure there'll be a whole journey/backstory to Celes, but as it stands I don't exactly blame Cyan for not trusting the lady who like 5 minutes ago was apparently working with Kefka and Gestahl.

Locke also defends Celes, but for the same reason that he is protective of Terra. Still hung up on some promise he must've made to a woman in the past that I guess he didn't manage to keep. Edgar warns Celes of this pretty much but she makes it clear she is no love-starved twit (good!). We then have a series of battles to get to Kefka before his team reaches Banon, and this is much harder than the first version of this kind of fight we had back in the mines. I'm not sure if I split the group wisely- my teams were Sabin/Celes, Terra/Locke, and the other three. I kept the mages apart, and we laid waste to several dozen enemies before I remembered that we have to actively move south to end it. Oops! The music here is a nice remix of the terrific overworld theme. There's also been a slower version of that theme played earlier so I'm guessing it's the equivalent of this game's main theme.

Unfortunately I use up a lot of healing items and have some very bad luck in Kefka (who actually fights us this time) casting Blizzara moments before Celes casts Runic. I fail on him a few times and have to eventually restart the mission. Second time round I just rush right to the bottom with Sabin and Celes, wasting everyone in our path. This is a surprisingly effective tactic, and the Hell's Raiser doesn't halt us much. Against Kefka I get into a routine of Raging Fist with Sabin and Runic with Celes, and we're pretty much untouchable. He runs away eventually and the rest disappear.

Reaching the Esper Terra first knocks Locke, then the rest of the party over the side of a cliff, and seems compelled to interact with the Esper against her will. She turns into a... something, as Celes aptly states it, and flies around the world, apparently heading west. Huh, didn't see that coming. Everybody decides to go look for her, so now it's time to properly decide on a party. I am not used to this after IV and V had set parties the whole games lol. I never know whether to put people I already like into the party or pick new ones so I can warm to them more. I have tentatively put in Sabin, Celes, Locke and Edgar but I'm open to changing it.

I get some new gear, rest in the Elder's bed for free (up yours, 200 Gil Inn), and see a weird yeti like creature taunt me from within the mine. I don't seem to be able to reach it inside so that's something to make a note of for later. There's also a locked chest, gotta remember that too. Leaving it here for today, it was a short one but we made some progress.

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Slowly becoming a Final Fantasy aficionado. Currently playing: FFVI
Congrats to azuarc, Guru Champion 2020!
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Team Rocket Elite
01/03/21 5:42:15 PM
#47:


For the Narshe fight you can put your 4 strongest characters with your best equipment on one team and have them rush Kefka. The other teams never need to fight anything so it doesn't matter if they are balanced or not.
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My bracket looked like random picks compared to his.
Congrats to azuarc for winning the GotD 2020 Guru Contest!
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Grand Kirby
01/03/21 6:06:38 PM
#48:


Shadow is a bit unique in that he has a random chance to leave your party after every battle. So it's possible for him to straight up ditch you when he feels like it.

Incidentally, you'll have another chance to bring Shadow in your party soon, but you'll need to leave an empty space in your party to do so. It's not really worth it though, because he can still just randomly leave at any time. BUT, if you sleep at an inn with him in your party, you have a random chance of seeing into his dreams...

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Okay, I rolled a 14. What's that mean? Hsu
That you're a cheater. This is a 12-sided die. Chan
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colliding
01/03/21 6:11:01 PM
#49:


splitting the party up through the first narshe fight is formative jrpg storytelling for me. every other game where something like this happens is always compared to this in my mind. ffvi has SO MANY scenes that I use to judge other jrpg's it's ridiculous.

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while you slept, the world changed
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andylt
01/04/21 5:06:54 PM
#50:


colliding posted...
ffvi has SO MANY scenes that I use to judge other jrpg's it's ridiculous.
I am excited for more of this stuff!

(Page break)

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Slowly becoming a Final Fantasy aficionado. Currently playing: FFVI
Congrats to azuarc, Guru Champion 2020!
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andylt
01/04/21 5:10:16 PM
#51:


We get some backstory for Sabin at Figaro Castle, and the brothers comfort each other. The scene is decent if a bit standard, I wonder how this would play out if I hadn't brought Edgar with me. The castle buries itself under the sand and moves to the other side of the mountains, where we find the town of Kohlingen. This time it's Locke's turn for backstory (Hey I was lucky picking the right team members!) and indeed there's a woman in his life who he believes he failed to save. But it is a bit more complicated than that, as she is apparently dead but still being... preserved in some way by some herbs, and there's a treasure somewhere (apparently in the Imperial capital of Vector) that could send Rachel's soul back to her body. We see a few flashbacks here and Celes has a brief moment thinking about Locke, again I wonder if that's just cut out if I don't have her with me.

Apparently Terra has been here and burned someone's house but then flew south, so I head north to a little cabin whose owner wants to build a coliseum. So there must be some kind of timeskip or something here. We trek all the way down to Jidoor, a posh town of posh people who are nonetheless still split into their own sort of caste system. Lol. We get told about an opera house, and I have to say I think this is the first time in a JRPG that I've seen opera be featured. I am remembering hearing about a famous opera scene in this game, now that I think about it. Our party gets told we look like the famous opera singer Maria (I'm guessing he was talking to Celes, not party leader Locke) and up in the fancy part of fancy town there's a bunch of paintings we don't seem to be able to do anything with, including one of a lady and one of an Ultros.

The poor people from Jidoor have been pushed out and moved north to the funkily named Zozo, where we head next as the Opera House is closed :( . I get so tempted here to ride back to Narshe and swap out team members to see if there's different dialogue options/backstory scenes with Cyan/Gau/Shadow, but I don't do so.

Zozo is a cool looking rundown town with threatening looking monsters and just generally a pretty urban and modern look for a town compared to the more medieval vibes of Jidoor and the rest. I soon realise our goal here, to find the correct inputs for a clock in the Inn. It takes me a bit to realise/remember that literally everybody lies here, and we end up wandering the whole town looking for info, fighting an awful lot of battles along the way. There's some fun dialogue with all the lies around, at one point a string of villagers run up each telling us a different time on the clock. Thankfully my note-taking for this topic helps me keep track of what isn't true, and we eventually get enough info.

Turns out that's not the main plot here though, because traveling up and across the buildings we find a friendly villager who claims to be weak and will let us pass, lol. Great intro for a boss fight. The fight itself isn't very hard, Sabin's Aura Cannon hits like a truck and with Locke's Mug and Edgar's many Tools we make short work of him. Our reward is finding Terra, still unconscious, and Ramuh! The Esper gives us plenty of exposition and important lore, seems like summons are gonna be very very important in this narrative. Notably Terra herself is not quite an Esper, but something else. Ramuh pretty much dies and converts himself to Magicite, and we gain him and his three compatriots Siren, Cait Sith (!) and Kirin. Surprisingly no Ifrit or Shiva just yet, they're normally early!

Terra does not come with us, our next goal is to head to the Imperial continent and rescue some other Espers that should help Terra come to terms with her identity. It's time for a new party (I swap out Sabin for Cyan, for now), and we get an intro to how Espers work in this game. It seems very cool, kind of a proto-junction system from VIII, and everybody now has MP and access to spells and summons. Guess I'm allowed to grind now, hopefully! With this new mechanic it feels like I'm properly out of the 'intro' now and into the main game, I'm very happy about this development.

Before leaving I solve the clock puzzle and get a Chainsaw! A powerful tool that seems like it can insta-kill some enemies. Fun! Back at Jidoor it is confirmed to us that Celes is indeed a lookalike of Maria, and as luck would have it Maria has an admirer who possesses the only airship in the world. An airship we need to reach the Imperial Continent down south. The biggest twist in this game so far is that this guy is not in fact named Cid, but Setzer. I would've bet money on that! Setzer is 'free from society's narrow views of morality', which could swing either way depending on how you look at it, given that he plans to kidnap Maria he seems like a shady dude but the text intro implies he's gonna be in our party so who knows.

I'm really getting into things now that we have the Esper system in play, and I'm very much looking forward to heading to the Opera House next time!

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Slowly becoming a Final Fantasy aficionado. Currently playing: FFVI
Congrats to azuarc, Guru Champion 2020!
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