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16  Media / Game Journals / Re: Dice Plays FFIX on: June 26, 2015, 09:34:43 PM
@Natros I'm afraid I will have to, POLITELY, decline Enchant Arms with a "NAAAAAAW...s'ok".

^ *clicky!* ^ Track: Garnet's Theme (a nice Piano Version I found)

Part VI: Save the Queen!

Brief Synopsis: After finding the Black Mage Village (where Vivi learns his people are tragically short-lived), we head through Conde Petie after a and short-lived Honeymoon.  We find a little purple-headed brat named Eiko and she takes us to the Village of Summoners, Madain Sari, where Garnet remembers her childhood as a summoner!!  For reasons (I might have scrolled too fast), we go investigate the Iifa Tree and stop the source of all the Mist in the world that creates black mages and monsters and fuels all the wars.  We hit up Madain Sari again, have a romantic night, fight with Amarant, have Amarant join us, then head back to the Lifa Tree to see if Kuja is there.  He is and so is Brahne, we try to stop both, but Kuja commands Bahamut to kill the Queen instead. 
RIP Brahne and long live Queen Garnet!

= I fuck you not; I SPENT AN HOUR AND A HALF trying to steal from Hilgigars on the Conde Petie Mountain Path and STILL got only 2/3 of his wares (Meanwhile: I cooked, ate, and watched an episode of something while clicking "X" every so often). 
   This is some broken ass bullshit and a huge negative on an already lame battle system.  When I gave up I was able to kill the fuck within 5 minutes.  The game really should have thought this through better with a way better system for this.  I realize it's more of a 'bonus' if you can steal the goods, but c'mon... After THAT long the game should throw you a bone at some point for wasting precious life.

=  This part is also pretty shitty for handing you two white mages and a black mage party (and Zidane).  My party consisted of 3 people doing hardcore ethers.  I DO like that the Lifa Tree is basically an 'undead' focused dungeon... I somehow believe that was a conscious decision given the party.

= Are Zidane's (non-trance) skills like ever worth using? 

= Eiko! Welcome to the team.  I feel Eiko represents a different decade of how "young girls" were depicted in JRPGs.  She's less obnoxious...and whiney... Well, I mean she is those things, but umm, I guess what I mean I sense no "loli-ness" in her.  She's cute and silly, but she's not trying too hard either.  It's dumb, but her puppy love for Zidane reminds me of myself at her age (*facepalm*).

= Zidane is the cool "big brother" to Vivi.  Sometimes he encourages him when things are rough, and sometimes he just asks if Vivi's holding up okay.... But sometimes, you just gotta "let go of your problems" by pissing over the side of a cliff! (...poor Eiko)

= The whole Madain Sari sequence becomes a great way to introduce a quick arc for Eiko (who suffers from a bit of loneliness), but more importantly, it helps to bring things full-circle for Garnet.  Her woes aren't over but a lot of her backstory gets beautifully wrapped-up.  She discovers she's from Madain Sari after a finding a secret cave that felt 'familiar', she then remembers being a wee lass leaving the village with her mum just as it's destroyed.  Brutal, but cool.
    I like that Zidane remarks that now Garnet has lost two moms; Queen Brahne is "lost to greed" and her biological mum died at sea.  What I like more is that Zidane's comment is quickly followed up with Eiko's optimism; Garnet may have lost her parents, but she's found a new sister in Eiko!  Aww

= The added touch that 'summoner species' of Gaia having actual horns protruding from their forehead was absolutely perfect given Summoners in past FF titles 'mimic' this appearance with special headbands.

I also like the added complexity of Garnet as a summoner.  She feels like a part of her is 'missing' when the Eidolons were extracted from her, but at the same time she can't 'hear them' like Eiko can (since Garnet had her horn forcibly removed and that shit seems to work like an antenna of sorts).  It would have been great if a very faint scar could be seen on her forehead because of it...but oh well.  One thing I definitely don't like is they missed giving Garnet's mum a horn in the opening, whether because it was an oversight or a spoiler, but it WAS in her concept art.

= Alright...so...anyone else call it "Lifa Tree" instead of the "Iifa Tree"??   The sans-serif font makes it a lot harder to read the "I".  Ah well, I'm just gonna use them interchangeably.

= So Lani's out of the story as fast as she was in.  I do like Amarant though.  Welcome Amarant!!  He's cool and a deep thinker, and I like that, but I love how he over-thinks why Zidane decided to spare him after their duel (can't make him *completely* serious, this is FF9!).  I also like his refusal to do a "victory pose", it helps make him feel like he's still an outsider to the merry celebrations of our group.

= Not a big deal, but it confused me a lot as a kid that Amarant and Eiko's last name's are the exact same besides the vowels being flipped (Coral and Carol respectively). 
...I thought they were related.

= I don't have much reaction on the Iifa Tree.  It's really cool on the outside and ghastly on the inside; I'm pretty sure the design team was told to design a "Tree of Mana as if it was from an alien planet instead".  And I like that, if you're a conscious player, you'll note that the giant branches from the tree actually extend throughout the entire world map (See exhibits: A, B, and C
   Also, I never noticed this before, but the tree mechanisms/lifts ONLY activate when Zidane uses them... HMMMMMMmmm.

= *snicker*.  I'm 90% certain this was inspired by some hentai.

=  If you say there's a better Final Fantasy couple than Zidane and Garnet, you'd ---...well, you can probably make a good argument, but these two are pretty damn good!!! 
    It's actually a pretty basic affair though... It's basically Aladdin where a humble thief falls for the beautiful princess, and Zidane's motivation to follow Garnet aren't particular note-worthy, and his relentless pursuit of her only seems to put her off. 
    But the chemistry is indisputable, and try as she might to resist (and she does, quite easily and quite often), he seems to know what to say when she needs to hear it.  His street smarts and street savvy compliment her goals perfectly. 
    The boat scene in Madain Sari is short (take a cue from that TidusxYuna!!), but it says everything you need to know; romance doesn't always need to be a grand gesture or proclamation -- sometimes it's just saying the right thing.

Zidane: "I'm surprised you found this place. You got the talent to be a bandit!
        How 'bout you and me team up? We'll call ourselves 'The Betrothed.'"

Dagger: "My talent's up to snuff, but that name isn't."

Zidane: "Hehehe. You're really something these days."

Dagger: "If I am, I must've gotten it from you."


Dagger: "Why did you come with me?"

Zidane: "Hey, that's Ipsen's line."

Dagger: "Ipsen? Who's that?"

Zidane: "Ipsen is a character from a play, but he's a real-life adventurer.
        I think the play is based on his adventures. It kind of goes like
        this... Ipsen and his good friend Colin worked at a tavern in Treno.
        One day Ipsen got a letter. The letter was so wet from rain that
        most of the writing was illegible. The only part he could read said
        'Come back home.' Nowadays, we have airships and stuff, but back
        then, it was really hard to travel. He didn't know why he had to go
        back, but he got some time off, gathered his things, and set out on
        his journey home. He walked a thousand leagues through the Mist.
        Sometimes he was attacked by vicious monsters, but he made it,
        because his friend Colin was by his side. And then, after much time
        on the road... He had to ask Colin something. 'Why did you come with

Dagger: "And? What was Colin's answer?"

*panties drop*

It's easy to swoon over fantasy romances, I think Tidus and Yuna have a much more 'magical' love story where love-at-first-sight bonds them, a connection makes them inseparable, and then they share some smooches at Make Out Lake Under the Magical Moonlight.  But the exchanges between Garnet and Zidane feel natural and never really contrived.

= Kuja still isn't a very interesting villain, but I do like how things ended with Queen Brahne.  After getting Bahamut'd in the face, the Queen and her soldiers lay to waste on the beach as she shares her final words with Garnet.  It's sweet that Brahne sort of 'comes back to her senses' in her final moments, noting the last time she felt this 'free' was when she was with Garnet and her late husband going to see a play. ( ;_; ) 
    I think Vivi getting a small opportunity to narrate was effective and surprisingly appropriate.  He has a lot of issues to work because of Brahne and states that he *hates* Queen Brahne and was even *happy* she was about to die...  But instead, Vivi sees a daughter crying for her mother, and how the Princess was unable to save the Queen despite how hard she tried and even after all the problems she's caused, and it makes Vivi want to cry as well. 
   Vivi is definitely a character all too familiar with the subject of death.

^ *clicky!* ^ Track: Madain Sari
Till next time!

PS = Random funny I found (He also looks like my dad and that would be an accurate assessment)
17  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Final Fantasy VII Remake (updates in the 1st post) on: June 26, 2015, 09:10:26 PM
@Andrew: Keeping rubbing salt on the wound doesn't make the bitterness go away you know.

Made me giggle.

I'm grateful that FF13's OSTs exist if that's enough.
18  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: New 3DS Fire Emblem Fates on: June 26, 2015, 12:17:10 PM
only 9 speed at L1/1? Worst pegasus knight ever. Enjoy not having parents, loser!
I LOL'd. :P
Me too xD
19  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Today's News on: June 26, 2015, 12:14:46 PM

That is fucked.  I'm glad they're trying to rectify mistakes but I guess that only does a certain amount of good for people who have suffered so much because of it.

Also, congratulations to the USA, GAY MARRIAGE IS LEGAL ALL OVER (I'm sure this has made everyone even the south very happy)!

Hopefully this puts such a silly and minor issue to focus on other important things (I mean at least compared to things like war, poverty, disease, wealth distribution, environment, resource strain, racism, and other things fucking everything up, I feel gay marriage should have been a 'no brainer').
20  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Tales of Berseria on: June 25, 2015, 07:12:05 PM
The seasons may change but that outfit remains the same!

It's okay, you can change that for only $3.99!
21  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Tales of Berseria on: June 25, 2015, 05:56:58 PM

Screenshots and information!

Looks like the Tales team is trying to really diversify the world through climate this time.  The north is getting colder and it's spreading (#GoTwinteriscoming), pirates taking up safe passages, and seasons a-r-r-r-r-r-e changing (haha see what I did there haha).
22  Media / Game Journals / Re: A Game Journal Reborn on: June 25, 2015, 03:16:35 PM

23  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Persona 5 on: June 25, 2015, 12:50:06 PM
Here's the lyrics video for P4DAN Dance! (or as I incorrectly red: "Dancel") (and it's old so you've probably already heard it)

But here's the swank as hell opening video for it: https://youtu.be/-VBmx2V9GFU
(besides some difficulty animated Chie's jacket)
24  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Recently Viewed Movies Episode 2: The Vampire Bites Back on: June 25, 2015, 01:01:29 AM
^ I kinda like it for that unresolved aspect.  I normally don't, I'm with you right there, but I do think it's a fun/depressing look at popular media too and how it can fuck perspectives up.

Inside Out!

IMDB synopsis:
After young Riley is uprooted from her Midwest life and moved to San Francisco, her emotions - Joy, Fear, Anger, Disgust and Sadness - conflict on how best to navigate a new city, house and school.

...It's good.

It's cute, but...hell, even somewhat formulaic for Pixar.  It is super sweet and very creative, Pixar is totally masters of the craft in this department with really ringing out all ideas and being knowledgable about the topic they work with, so there's a ton of TLC put into the world they fashion.  

But don't be fooled --- it may star a girl and her core innermost emotions (joy, sadness, disgust, anger, and fear), but this boils down way too hard on being an opposites attract "buddy flick" between Joy and Sadness working out their differences while trying to reunite with the main group; basically something the three Toy Story flicks have already done.  The core problem is incredibly realistic, and I can imagine this story really impacting someone who has moved cities in their lifetime; there's a ton of small details in the main girl's life the works on many levels.  And despite the hard focus on the five emotions working out these 'feelings' during a big move, the family is well developed and aren't just peripheral to the plot.

I think the film is a lot of fun and very interesting on an emotional level (in fact I doubt it'll resonate with children as much as it will with adults).  And while I think it's a very good film, I can't say any part of it necessarily made my jaw drop with any of the action or any of the comedy (of course, to be fair, Up and Wall-e set a really high bar for that in comparison).  It felt more like a creative exploration to a very real and difficult part of growing up, a think piece that works more than being this big huge thrilling experience.


I'm happy to say it's better than that crapfest called Maleficent.  It's good too; but the comparison has to be made: It's not as good as the 1950 animated version, basically it's a tawdry retelling of it complete with a more glamorous dress and Helena Bonham Carter acting like Helena Bonham Carter.  It's nice that these adaption try at more of a backstory than the original Disney versions ever intended (The Prince actually has a name and is more than just eye-candy), but oddly they seem to be even cheesier than their musical originals.

What the worst thing has to be however is that the stakes just weren't the same.  
Lady Tremaine in the film was absolutely frightening, devious, and you were scared what she would do every time she showed on screen because she was that much of a bitch to Cinderella.  Cate Blanchet does a fine job but is not nearly written to be anywhere near as menacing.

https://youtu.be/I6SdCDpvTnw  I mean, WATCH THIS SCENE.  It's fast, it's cruel, it takes Cinderella from being the belle of the ball and humiliating her as they rip her dress to rags, the poor girl runs off crying after.  
In 2015 Cinderella, I kid you not, Lady Tremaine rips a small part of the top of Ella's dress... and that's about it.

Anyways, watch this movie for your little cousin, niece, or daughter.  It's for them, not us grouchy adults. :P

Fun fact is that this seems to be a fun reunion of sorts: Two of the main girls are from Downton Abbey, two of the main guys were in Game of Thrones (lol,I said "were"), and director Kenneth Branagh got to work with Helena Bonham Carter again.  That's pretty cool I guess.

EDIT: Here's an anime version of the story spoken in Arabic.  https://youtu.be/0ox308ziFM4
25  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Re: Final Fantasy VII Remake (updates in the 1st post) on: June 24, 2015, 10:08:07 PM
From the editorial:
We want snowboarding mini-games. We want Barrett and Cloud on the Ferris Wheel. We want slapping mini-games, we want Barrett pounding his chest and Cid launching into "$&%*@!" moments

If there was ever a reason to risk making an M-rated game it's so that Cid and Barret could keep the [mother fucking] colourful language in.  Felt realistic...and reminds me of my dad who similarly 'loses it' in similar situations (big or small).

One of my favorite moments where this is utilized is when you visit Aeris in the City of the Ancients (yes, just before her death) when Cloud is 'possesed' and goes to kill her himself (which, by the way, is really well done on a gameplay-level that has the player trying to regain Cloud's movements).  Cloud's about to swipe down, but the party members call out to him, if you bring Cid he goes, "You dumb @#$%!" while Tifa or whatever are just like "What are you doing?!" or something similar.


Also...man, I hated the slap mini-game.  Tifa is a fighter, I think her suplexing Scarlet would have been about 1,000 times more satisfying than making her cheek turn a little red.
26  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Random and Amazing Pictures, Please! on: June 24, 2015, 08:38:02 PM
This one hits home =(

Yeeep.  :/
*floofs down on bed*

My brother of all people starts giving me the speeches.  When are you moving out? What's the plan?  And I really don't need it: It's on my mind at least once an hour of every day.

A little late, but awesome:
27  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: What's the haps? on: June 24, 2015, 07:25:45 PM
Awkward moment when you walk in on your ex and his new boyfriend doing it :D :D :D D:

Duuuuude you shoulda had just ONE ZINGER as you went by or like held up those score cards that olympic judges use:
28  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Re: Recently watched Episodes of TELEVISION BOX offerings! on: June 24, 2015, 07:20:14 PM
And because girl's privates parts have cooties Airplane security won't go there the second we say "it's that time o' the month".  BAM.

Oh speaking of Broad City, the girls had a cameo for Inside Amy Schumer's "Universe" skit on top of an awesome cameo from Bill Nye where he actually drops a glorious "F-bomb".
29  Media / Game Journals / Re: Dice Plays FFIX on: June 24, 2015, 06:28:22 PM
Also agreed.
We come to this section for journals, not CliffsNotes. I haven't commented in this thread ('til now) because I haven't played this game in about 15 years, and barely remember any of it. Still a great read, though. Keep it up.

Appreciate the insight from all of you. :D
I just got worried no one was reading it, so a small reminder (even if it's like "that's good" or one of these:

is pretty swell every so rarely). 
But yeah i guess the topic views don't lie.  I'm happy to do it and I'm slowly deciding my next game (it won't be Final Fantasy).

Natros would it help if I kind add small synopses to major plot points I'm trying to discuss or try to work in the context?
30  Media / Game Journals / Re: Sun, Sun, Mr. Golden Sun on: June 24, 2015, 06:25:14 PM
Thanks for commenting! Also, thanks for reminding me where I've seen the Camelot logo before.

I like the music in this game as well. I do feel that some of the tracks are recycled quite a bit more than necessary, though. I also agree about the mind reading/Psynergy aspect. They were definitely creative with it. It's just a little annoying that in order to use it on the map/in town, you  have to go through the menus each damn time. Being able to hot button it in some way would have been great (unless it is actually possible, and I'm too ignorant to figure it out).

YEAH, iirc they had that figured out for the NDS game.  They gave you two slots...but like y'know, there's like 4 you use a lot. :S

I think I might pick this game up again though.  It was fun.  I remember sitting on the toilet with my GBA (shut up we've all done it) playing this game in the Summer it came out absolutely floored by the graphics and 'advanced' old school RPG feel.  And them summons.
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