I was browsing on the internet, looking for Final Fantasy Origins soundtrack and I noticed FF1 (NES version) review on particular FF fansite.
The review describes story as "complex and grabbing". Well, I have a problem understanding it. How is it so complex and grabbing? Maybe fellow MobyGamers can enlighten me because I don't get it.
??? Are you sure they haven't confused it with a later Final Fantasy game? They were really talking about the first one?
Don't think there's anything "complex and grabbing" there. It's just 4 nameless good guys against evil, no details. Even for its time, it wasn't that special. The first Phantasy Star had a better story.
This doesn't apply to FF2 (the real one, for NES), though. It had a really strong story for the time, including even morally ambiguous characters.
It was probably just a fanboy who reviewed it without playing it thinking that the story would automatically complex and grabbing because it was final fantasy. That's my guess anyway.
Keep in mind that he might be talking about the remakes, I know that they added background stories and character-related subquests... still it's the story of the four warriors of light or whatever grinding their way to the last dungeon, but who knows, anyone played the remakes?
I played the FF Origins remake, and it's the same old stuff story-wise. It's as primitive as it gets, really.
FF Origins is worth getting for FF2, it's a million times better game in every possible aspect. There are sacrifices, betrayals, morally ambiguous characters, in short, all the stuff that went extreme in later installments... and there's a cool gameplay system: you become stronger by executing same actions, not by leveling up... for example, get hit a lot and you'll gain stamina and HP, use an axe a lot and you'll gain proficiency with this weapon, etc... like in "Morrowind" :)
Full review: http://www.ffinsider.net/review/ff1.php
He pretty much glorifies it, don't you think?
No, I think the review is pretty accurate, except for the storyline part. He mentions the strong points, such as character classes and all.
Yeah, it was poorly implemented though. I remember the key to winning was just to have your party attack yourself. At least in the original, dunno if they fixed that for the remake.
Yes, there's a new difficulty level in the remake that makes the game much easier, so you don't have to hit yourself... but of course, if you do that, it'll be even easier :)
In a way, hitting yourself made a lot of sense. Imagine that you are a group of 4 warriors whose goal is to become stronger. What would you do? Train, of course! And "training" means sparring with each other, i.e. effectively "hitting yourself".
In real life, you wouldn't become stronger, more intelligent, and gain more health because you killed so and so many monsters. But you would certainly handle a weapon better if you have already used it many times. You would also be harder to hit if you've been hit a lot before, since you'd learn to anticipate the opponents' moves and to evade the blows.
What I loved about the game was the fact you didn't depend at all on experience gained from battles in order to become powerful. Theoretically, you could just take your time in the beginning, train, max out all your stats, and become almost invincible for the rest of the game. The final boss was still hard, though.
Also, the game world was open to you since the beginning, you could explore it the way you wanted, that is something that got more and more reduced, as FF games became more and more linear.
YID YANG Wrote:
Yes, but in reality when we want to spar, we don't have to find a group of bees and stand facing them. :)
Indeed, that's a load of bull man. And didn't the PSP remakes come out just now?? They are being launched as we speak I think... you already played them??
Talking about a Final Fantasy II remake doesn't imply the PSP version, since there's already been WonderSwan Color, PlayStation, and Game Boy Advance versions. I don't know how all their difficulties compare, but the GBA one was lightened up. Word from the first FF PSP release is that its difficulty was like that of the GBA version, so I imagine it will be that way for the second as well.
I don't think there was a better way to implement it in such an early console-based RPG. I think the system was very innovative and interesting.
YID YANG Wrote:
Just like to point out that the Tactics Ogre games did have a training mode exactly like this. The player pitted half their forces in a training battle with the other half... and all actions done in the fake battles counted towards real XP and ability improvements. Knight of Lodis especially uses the abilties, where a character has to put themselves in a risky situation often to get the "courage" award, which is required for a class change to Knight... thus all the characters can't help but grow in different ways, depending on how they're used on the battlefield.
Describing Final Fantasy's story as "complex and grabbing" seems silly, but in context of his review I see where it's coming from. He compares it to the common "Save the princess" stories that were more frequent at the time, and yeah, compared to Donkey Kong and Legend of Zelda there are definitely a lot more different events that take place between beginning and end.
However, when he suggests that a modern player should try it immediately for the story... not so much.
Personally I don't think any of the Final Fantasy's were amazingly grabbing or deep, but that's just my opinion. I guess different people get turned on by different stuff. Betrayals and sacrifices aren't something I find dramatic in video games.
The point is that the first FF didn't even have betrayals and sacrifices. The only twist it had that you rescue the princess very early in the game, and instead of ending, the game continues onto a cosmic battle against some twisted time-traveling evil.
Personally, I found the story of the first Phantasy Star, which came out roughly at the same time, much better in every aspect. It had real characters and a personal story based on revenge.
Of course, later Final Fantasies had much better stories than any Phantasy Star since then.