Tag Archives: Final Fantasy

Currently Playing: “Final Fantasy XIII”

12 Sep

I’m just a few hours in so I can’t say much about the game. So far, I’m actually a bit confused about what’s going on because all kinds of strange terms are used – l’Cie,” “fal’Cie,” “Cie’th,” or “Gran Pulse” and I find it damn hard to remember what they mean.

Here’s what I think I know: the game is set in a world called Cocoon. It’s a gigantic sphere and outside its shell is some kind of netherworld known as Gran Pulse. Fal’Cie are otherworldly beings and there are two kinds: the Fal’Cie and the Pulse Fal’Cie. Pulse Fal’Cie are considered dangerous and people who come into contact with one are viewed as infected and called l’Cie. The game starts when government troops take care of a whole village whose people are suspected to be infected by a Pulse Fal’Cie. Some civilians resist because they suspect they face more than just an evacuation. That’s the grand scale.

Then there are the individual characters who make up your party and most of them have a more specific reason why they fight the government troops. For example, one of the l’Cie is the fiancée of one character and the sister of another and they try to save her.

First impressions: Final Fantasy XIII reminds me a bit of Final Fantasy VII (the design of the city, fighting against the government) and Final Fantasy X (the characters’ looks, personality). There’s a bit of romance. But the female character (the one that got infected) looks rather child-like when she’s standing beside her boyfriend, so I can’t bring myself to really care about them. Actually, all female characters so far look a bit on the anorexic side, IMO. The game also seems very linear so far. No exploring, just following the path the developers want you to take. Oh, and the battle system is fast and I think my best option is to just press one button. (Or maybe I just need to get the hang of it.)

In short: great graphics; a slightly confusing story and battle system (but both with potential); I miss the magic of some of the previous games a bit.

Here’s a trailer:

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"Playing" "Final Fantasy XII"

17 Feb

For the last weekends, I played Final Fantasy XII. I started with the extra stuff meaning getting all the monsters on the list, best weapons and armour, and so on. And it sucks. Really, FF XII might very well be the first Final Fantasy game I didn’t do all the extras. Maybe it’s just me maturing but I suspect it has much more to do with the chance-dependent game play that is used in the game.

This weekend, I spent nearly one hour trying to get an accessory which is in every Final Fantasy game (as far as I now) so it’s tradition to have it. According to the guide book (how else would I know about such things in this game?), my best shot at getting it is a treasure chest in a grassland area. Now my rant is this: every chest (or nearly) has been randomized in terms of drop rates. At the most elaborate (like “my” treasure chest from the weekend), it goes like this:

1. the chest has a certain amount of chance of appearing at all
2. if it appears, there’s a certain percentage of chance that I’ll get money from it (in my case higher) or an item
3. if it decided on an item, there’s a certain percentage of chance I’ll get an item I also could buy (in my case, very high) and there’s a small chance I get the item I’m looking for

Now, I didn’t compute the chance total to appear of the item I’m looking for (it would be to depressing to see it black on white) but I know that I spent 1 hour trying for it with no success.

This one hour went like this:
1. I load the save game
2. go to the area with the chest
3. flee from the monsters there to get to the spot where the chest is (killing them would take up time)
4. look if the chest is there
5a. when no – quit the game and load again
5b. when yes – try to open it while the monsters I fled from attact me
6. look what I got
7. quit the game and load again
Step 1 – 7 take around 1-2 minutes.

Guess I should be happy that the area with the chest is right next to an area with a save point, huh?

This randomized chance to appear / or drop / or steal is in place for nearly every thing in Final Fantasy XII. I spent over 30 minutes changing between two areas (takes under one minute) to get a rare monster with a 20% chance of appearance to appear. I have one character spent the whole fight against a rare monster stealing because it’s the only monster you can steal this item from meaning I fight only with two characters and I end up with a long-assed fight and no item.

That’s not fun!

And I’m fed up with this not-playing playing. I think the next weekend I’ll do the final dungeon and that’ll be the end for Final Fantasy XII for quite some time.

23 Feb

Today is the first day that Final Fantasy XII is available in stores in Germany. I didn’t buy it right away – I don’t really have the time to play it properly right now and that’s what would happen if I had it – but I admit drooling and being tempted and being jealous of others who had it in their shopping bag.

Instead, I got myself the guidebook. It’s gorgeous. 340 pages and hard cover. I’ll drool over that for a while.

Well, and I read repeatedly that the story in Final Finatsy XII isn’t as complex as in other games of this series. That was always one of the most important points in favour of this series for me so I can wait. Right?

On Romancing the Blog there was an interesting post by Sarah S. G. Frantz about literary criticism and romance novels: Why I Learned To Love Literary Criticism yesterday.

Finally, I ordered new books on Wednesday:

– Linnea Sinclair – Games of Command (yeah, finally!)
– Cheryl St. John – The Lawman’s Bride
– Robin D. Owens – Heartmate
– Karen Rose – I’m Watching You
– J. R. Wartd – Lover Revealed (what can I say?)

Film: "Final Fantasy VII – Advent Children"

15 Dec

I watched this film two times. The first time with the German synchronisation which is – who is surprised about it? – bad. Then the second time with the English one which is better. I also thought the film the second time better – because I picked up more things then.

I don’t think Advent Children is just pure eye candy. There are some nice (and subtle) things I only got the second time because a lot of things are only hinted at and easy, maybe inevitable, to miss the first time. So Advent Children is not just action without a plot. There is some if you look for it. But nevertheless, I really think of it as a looooooooong ending sequence to Final Fantasy VII (PS1 game) in which Cloud gets to solve his hang-ups with something that happened during the game. Of course, it also serves to bring back memories of the favourite (?) villain in the Final Fantasy universe.

There is a bonus feature on the DVD which tells the story of the game again with in-game sequences. In all honesty, I have to say that this was the first time I really got the story of Final Fantasy VII in the game because the German translation of the game is so bad most of the time I didn’t get what they were talking about, it was all jumbled and random. Of course, I might be that I was just to dense to get it. Anyway, I really had to struggle to keep me from starting the game.