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The Heroes of Final Fantasy Week 1 [Game Overview]
Jan 26th, 2010 by Dan

One of the first major features on this blog was a Villains of Final Fantasy series that ran for 13 weeks covering the main enemies of every numbered Final Fantasy game from I to XII including X-2. With Final Fantasy XIII launching in the states in just over a month, I figured it’s high time to give some recognition to the teams who are actually responsible for bringing those villains to justice and saving the world. I bring you the Heroes of Final Fantasy.

Not to kill the momentum of this first iteration of the series, but the first Final Fantasy was too traditional RPG to actually have any characters. Instead you just pick classes and name your four characters and that’s that. I’ll do something a little different (how can it be different when it’s the first time?) this week and just show all of the classes that comprise the Four Warriors of Light.

Warrior

The original Warrior

He looks so cute, but he's also scowling. Mixed messages there.

A generic, beefy tank class who relies on expensive equipment to be effective. The Warrior is not exciting, but it’s not his job to be. Surprisingly enough, this boring dude was selected as the representative for Dissidia. My guess: they had an unused 3D model of him floating around and decided to finally put it to use.

Monk

Final Fantasy I Monk

Kind of reminds me of Ryu

Known as Black Belt in the original translation to avoid religious connotations, the monk fights with his fists and wears light to no armor.

Thief

Final Fantasy I Thief

Really reminds me of Link. It's almost theft.

Surprisingly unable to steal anything in this first iteration of the series, the Thief’s main skill is being able to run away easily and reliably. He also has high agility.

Black Mage

Final Fantasy I Black Mage

The most famous of the bunch. I bet it's because he has no face.

With an iconic design that has held from Final Fantasy I all the way to throwbacks in modern iterations, the Black Mage casts black magic, AKA offensive spells.

White Mage

Final Fantasy I White Mage

Typically portrayed as a woman.

Another design that has remained relatively unchanged, the White Mage and his/her iconic white robe casts white magic, which is mostly curative, but also holy.

Red Mage

Final Fantasy I Red Mage

Looks more like a rogue-ish character than a mage.

A jack-of-all-mages class that can cast white and black magic spells, but specializes in neither. The top level spells are unavailable to him, but he is versatile.

Coolness:

Lame. These guys are all ciphers. No personality, no motivation, and no story. My pet rock has more personality.

1/10

Hero Quotient:

Saving the world is kind of the status quo for these heroic parties, so they won’t be getting bonus points for that. Eliminating the guardians of all the elements and deciphering the nonsensical plot centered around a time paradox does earn them some bonus points in their score.

3/10

As a bonus, you can check out Brian Clevinger’s webcomic, 8-Bit Theater, to see the personalities that he feels these heroes should have.

The Villains of Final Fantasy Week 10 [Game Overview]
Mar 6th, 2009 by Dan

Insert another credit, because it’s time for your weekly video game news and you’ve just hit the Game Overview screen.

With every Final Fantasy game there exists great (and not so great) teams of heroes bent on saving the world from some sort of evil force. While we could take a look at those heroes, let’s instead take a look at the evils that motivate these heroes to do what they do.

It should be noted that this feature will be full of spoilers.

Week 1 – Garland
Week 2 – Emperor Mateus of Palamecia
Week 3 – The Cloud of Darkness
Week 4 – Zeromus
Week 5 – Exdeath
Week 6 – Kefka
Week 7 – Sephiroth
Week 8 – Ultimecia
Week 9 – Necron

It’s time for the next generation, the next technological leap of Final Fantasy to its most recent platform, the PS2. With Final Fantasy X we finally achieved the cinematic storytelling goals Sakaguchi had been chasing so long thanks to one major innovation: voice acting. I’m not sure how well the Japanese vocal track worked, but let’s just say that some of the English voices, namely Tidus, Yuna, Lulu, and Khimari are just not that great.

Even with the voice acting of some of the principal characters being amateurish, the story really excelled. In fact, it’s the first Final Fantasy story I enjoyed post Final Fantasy VI. The basic gist of it is that Tidus has appeared in a new world called Spira where he accompanies Yuna on a pilgrimage to expel an ancient evil called Sin. Along the way Tidus learns that at the end of her quest, Yuna will have to die to complete the ritual, but that will only result in halting Sin until the next outbreak. What’s more, it seems that the person who silences Sin will become Sin after death.

There’s a lot more to it than that, namely with respect to where Tidus and his father, Jecht, come from, but it turns out that Jecht sacrificed himself to become Sin as part of Lord Braska’s ritual. This ultimately leads to a very dramatic confrontation between Tidus and his real bastard of a father during the final few bosses.

The actual final boss is Yu Yevon, the force that’s keeping Jecht in its thrall. All of this constitutes Sin, an ancient evil that terrorizes villages haphazardly, but it is not a conscious evil, it simply is and it simply destroys. The fact that the very people who have to stop Sin over and over eventually become Sin is what impresses me so much about this boss.

Evil Rating:

It does some major, major killing, but it really doesn’t know what it’s doing. It gets points for destruction, but avoids more points by being ignorant of it.

4/10

Cool Rating:

It does look like a slug that flies, but its also the reincarnated souls of the very people who stop it. Way cool.

7/10

Images and Video:

200px-yu_yevon

dissidiajechta

ffx-fayth_jecht

Game Overview: The Villains of Final Fantasy Week 1
Sep 19th, 2008 by Dan

Insert another credit, because it’s time for your weekly video game news and you’ve just hit the Game Overview screen.

With every Final Fantasy game there exists great (and not so great) teams of heroes bent on saving the world from some sort of evil force. While we could take a look at those heroes, let’s instead take a look at the evils that motivate these heroes to do what they do.

It should be noted that this feature will be full of spoilers.

Starting at the beginning, we have Garland/Chaos. After the Light Warriors defeated him in the present, he had the fiends send him 2000 years in the past where he became Chaos and sent the fiends to the present. Yes, it’s a confusing time loop, but this is what Sakaguchi wrote for his first RPG epic.

Unfortunately, that’s about the extent of the villain’s development, it being a rather primitive Final Fantasy game. Garland was supposedly a corrupted good knight too, but that’s about it.

Is he a good villain? Naw, not really. You see the guy twice in the game, once at the start, where he’s a tool that’s easily dispatched, and then once at the end of the game, where he transforms into Chaos and you kill him. He has much more of a presence and personality in Brian Clevinger’s 8-Bit Theater.

There’s not much to say about this one-dimensional villain, but without Garland, we wouldn’t have the other bosses of the future. We thank you Garland, for paving the way.

Images:

PSP Remake Sprite
Dissidia Concept Art
8-Bit Theater Garland
Chaos PSP Sprite

Battle Footage:

Garland

Chaos

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