March 5th, 2010

happy

Final Fantasy Friday

Two bits of "news" this week. Most importantly, next week (tuesday the 9th) Final Fantasy 13 comes out.

Second, the Squenix CEO thinks the Final Fantasy team should "move on to create and generate some ‘next generation’ forms of play".

Needless to say this has caused a certain amount of consternation amongst the "particular audience they have now" who are concerned that they're not going to be "catered to."

So this dove-tails with a couple discussions i've had with people in past month or two about what exactly _is_ Final Fantasy?

I think most fans would agree that there is a certain character to the Final Fantasy series, and you couldn't just slap the name on a game from a different series and have people accept it as a legitimate entry. So how much can they actually change about the series and still have it be a "real" Final Fantasy?

So as best as I can tell, based on my own memories backed up by a little research from a couple different sources, this is what the Final Fantasy series has been, reduced to a simple chart format. (Note that i included FF13, but the information there is somewhat speculative. I suppose if you really don't want to know if Cid is going to be in FF13 and such, don't click the cut.)

Collapse )

Also note that i don't actually have a copy of the FF8 soundtrack, so i couldn't test the music for that one. I've heard it claimed however that the Prelude and Main Theme were in every numbered Final Fantasy game... up until FF13. FF13 is the one that hasn't included "one or both of these tracks."

And yes, i'm sure the new guy wants to make a name for himself, but the prelude and main theme are just two songs and there are it about 80 other tracks they get to do whatever they want with. It's sad to see those two iconic pieces go.

Amusingly however, in related news Sqenix is disbanding their entire music team. And guess who's handling the music for FF14? Uematsu!

We also came up with a more specific subset of traits, how exactly does character development work in each game? After a lot of discussion we narrowed the traits under consideration down to "uniqueness" and "transferability." I.e. how much does the choice of one character over another matter (aside from personality of course,) and can you switch defining attributes between characters?

Of course it can be hard to simplify some of the character systems to just those two elements. Is FF1 the ultimate in "uniqueness" because each class is entirely different? Or are they totally generic because you could have all four members be the same class if you wanted? I decided to compromise on that one, of course you can feel free to comment about it, or just draw up your own table (with blackjack! and hookers! In fact, forget the table!)

Collapse )

And now for the user participation part of the program, the poll!

Instead of listing each FF game as an option for every single question, i'm just going to do a text box. At least try to restrict yourself to one answer for each question. And for the sake of my own (and possibly others') sanity, please answer in the form of "FF7" or "FF8" rather than "FFVII" or "FFVIII". Roman numerals may look cutesy in the titles, but they're a lot harder to read at a quick glance.

Poll #1534226 Final Fantasy Poll

What elements do you think are important for future Final Fantasy games to contain?

Prelude
0(0.0%)
Main Theme
0(0.0%)
Victory Fanfare
0(0.0%)
Chocobo Theme
0(0.0%)
Chocobos
0(0.0%)
Moogles
0(0.0%)
Summons
0(0.0%)
Crystals
0(0.0%)
Airships
0(0.0%)
Cid
0(0.0%)
Jobs System
0(0.0%)
Silver Haired Pretty Boys
0(0.0%)
Bahamut
0(0.0%)
Multiple Party Members
0(0.0%)
Full Control of All Characters
0(0.0%)

What other important elements did I not list that are especially important to you?

In your opinion, which FF game had the best character development system?

Which FF game had the best battle system?

Which FF game had the best characterization?

Which FF game had the best story?

Which FF game had the best music?

Which FF game had the best art style?

Which FF game had the best graphics?

What category did I forget, and which FF game was the best at it?

What is the best possible set of names for the first Final Fantasy MMORPG and its sequel?

Final Fantasy Online & Final Fantasy Online 2
5(71.4%)
Final Fantasy World & Final Fantasy World 2
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Universe & Final Fantasy Universe 2
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Realms & Final Fantasy Realms 2
1(14.3%)
Final Fantasy 11 & Final Fantasy 14
1(14.3%)

How excited are you about FF13?

Very excited! I'm going to be getting it on the first day!
4(40.0%)
Definitely interested. I'll be picking it up sometime in the next couple weeks,
3(30.0%)
Not sure yet. I'll wait to see reviews.
2(20.0%)
I've gotten turned off the series. I'm not going to get it unless everyone raves about it, and maybeo not even then.
0(0.0%)
I've never liked Final Fantasy, and I have no idea why I'm filling out this poll.
1(10.0%)

Do you think it will live up to whatever your expectations are?

I'm sure it will be better than I can possibly imagine!
0(0.0%)
I think I've probably got my expectations about right.
5(62.5%)
I'll probably be a little disappointed.
3(37.5%)
My soul will be crushed by the despair of confronting reality.
0(0.0%)

Which system will you by buying it for?

PS3
7(70.0%)
XBox
2(20.0%)
Both!
0(0.0%)
Neither!
1(10.0%)
Games: FF Crystal

Damn it!

The original plan was that i would take a nap on sunday to catch up on sleep, then go to Wumpskate monday night, then soak up a fairly large amount of sleep dep so i could get up earlyish on tuesday, head home from work at a reasonable time, and pick up FF13 at whatever store isn't being brain dead about ordering sufficient quantities.

Then i found out that some stores are going to be doing midnight releases for FF13 monday night! =P

Wumpskate only happens once a month. Wumpskate runs from 9 pm to 1 am. It's conceivable that i could show up promptly at 9 and leave in time to make it to a local store by midnight. However isn't half the fun of a midnight release supposed to be hanging out with the people who are just as geeky as you while waiting in line? Of course i kinda suck at socialization, so it's entirely possible that i'd just stand in line playing DS or whatever and not actually talk to anyone at all. Even so it's an experience that i'd only have the chance for every four or five years (judging by the releases for FF10 and FF12.)

There's clearly no way i could do the midnight release and _then_ go to Wumpskate.

Clearly this calls for a (second) friday fun poll.

Also, before i get into the poll, there's an article claiming that Squenix screwed up the XBox port of PS3. Although i think "screwed up" is probably a relative term. I couldn't tell a lot of difference between the comparison screenshots. However i have to admit that i was looking at them on my Nexus One, which may have a great screen but it's still pretty tiny. And also because i was reading the article on my cellphone there was no way to view the FMV clips which they say show some pretty serious problems in the 360 version.

Poll: (Of course you should feel free to only fill out one half of the questions if you don't have an opinion on the other half.)

Poll #1534307 What should i do?

Wumpskate or FF13 Midnight Release?

Wumpskate! It only happens once a month, and it's not like you'd talk to anyone at the midnight release anyways!
1(16.7%)
FF13 Midnight Release! A real Final Fantasy only gets released every four or five years!
1(16.7%)
Wumpskate and then the Release! Since you probably wouldn't talk to anyone in line anyways...
3(50.0%)
Neither! I hate you and don't think you should have any fun!
1(16.7%)

Which nights should i stay up late playing it once i've got it?

Go to the Midnight Release and stay up really late monday night!
0(0.0%)
Stay up late tuesday night!
1(16.7%)
Who needs sleep?
2(33.3%)
You need sleep! Don't stay up late any night!
1(16.7%)

What FF games have you played? (Bonus non sequitor question, because i forgot to put it in the last poll =P)

Final Fantasy 1
1(11.1%)
Final Fantasy 2
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 3
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 4
1(11.1%)
Final Fantasy 5
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 6
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 7
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 8
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 9
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 10
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 10-2
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 11
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 12
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 13 (I got an import copy!)
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 13 (I've got connections!)
0(0.0%)

Part 2 (Ran out of space for options)

Final Fantasy Tactics
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Tactics Advance
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Tactics Advance 2
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Mystic Quest
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Adventure
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Legend
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Legend 2
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Legend 3
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 12 Revenant Wings
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 4 The After Years
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 7 Crisis Core
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy 7 Dirge of Cerberus
0(0.0%)

Part 3 (Why oh why did i think this would be a good idea?)

Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles: The Crystal Bearers
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy CC: My Life as a King
0(0.0%)
Final Fantasy CC: My Life as a Darklord
0(0.0%)
Crystal Defenders
0(0.0%)
Ehrgeiz
0(0.0%)
Dissidia
0(0.0%)
Kingdom Hearts
0(0.0%)
Kingdom Hearts 2
0(0.0%)
Kingdom Hearts Chain of Memories
0(0.0%)
Kingdom Hearts 358/2
0(0.0%)


I know a couple of those don't really fit (FF Adventure, FF Legends, and KH 358/2 has no FF characters except Moogles) and i'm sure that despite the massive list it's possible i missed a couple. Feel free to complain about that in the comments ;)

Edit: Also note, this means played, not necessarily completed. I'll leave it up to you to decide how much is necessary to qualify. If you're the kind of person who tends to watch other people play games rather than playing them yourself you can count that i guess. Personally i don't think just watching Let's Play videos ought to count, but you can disagree i suppose :)