final fantasy Archives

Whatever Happened To Square-Enix?

I kind of like this new post thread, as it’s been leading to some interesting conversations with all of you.

I have a terrible confession to make: I never got into Chrono Trigger back in the day.

Now before you cry “Heretic” and raise pitchforks in my direction, I was always a Final Fantasy and Phantasy Star sort of person, and I was getting ready for Playstation, so there’s my reason why. But I did love Squaresoft’s RPGs. Final Fantasy VI (our III) was incredible, and I thought Super Mario RPG was wonderful. The games that the first Playstation brought out were equally great, from the FF VII-IX, Parasite Eve, Chrono Cross…. And with Playstation 2, the mere thought of Kingdom Hearts was too much to truly comprehend at the time (The first Kingdom Hearts was actually the last Squaresoft game, by the way).

I loved Square so much, that I am likely one of the few who actually liked Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, and the merging of Square-Enix seemed like another dream come true (even though it was mostly done to save Square when The Spirits Within flopped as much as it did).

But initially, I was a little Read the rest of this entry

I picked up Final Fantasy XIII this last week for the 360. Overall, I’m enjoying it. The battle system is different, but still accessible, the graphics are beautiful, and I like the main characters, which is always a make or break situation with me when it comes to these titles. If I don’t like the cast, I usually don’t finish the game. I have a feeling that I’m going to see this one through to the end, and I look forward to when the game “opens up” like the reviews say, as I’m in a fairly linear part of the game.

One thing I don’t get, however, are the “PS3 Vs. 360” graphic debates. Such debates are not lost on me, having been there for the SNES and Genesis days. This is also the first multi-platform Final Fantasy main entry, so there is actually a basis of comparison.

Back in the 16-bit days, some titles were easy to spot for the “superior” version. The SNES version of Mortal Kombat II, for example, won out due to its better sound quality and more robust color palette. Going back ever farther, “Atari 2600 Vs. Intellivision” had some Read the rest of this entry

Valentine’s Day.

I’m still disappointed that Nintendo doesn’t use Valentine’s Day as an opportunity to hawk Pit from Kid Icarus out more. In my restarting games, I’m trying out the NES classic again, and while I had previously beat the game twice on the Wii, starting over with zero power-ups is a stern reminder about how unforgiving the difficulty initially is. Love the game, but it’s a brutal beast.

Hope the V-Day festivities have worked out for all. I got a 16GB SD card for my PSP, which finally allowed me to download Final Fantasy VII on the system. It’s funny how many people bash on that installment, calling it “overrated”. The polygon-based characters are a little archaic (as was just about any other 3D game during the 1990’s), but the art direction, backgrounds and music are still compelling. I felt that little tinge of magic in going through the first scenario, and it reminded me why I loved the game so much (and by proxy Advent Children and Crisis Core).

The odd thing about my PSP? My faceplate cracked. I’ve ordered a new one, but it’s not presenting a good indication of how carful I am Read the rest of this entry

Free Chocobo Avatar Toy.

I am all about the “free” of late. If you’d like a free Chocobo toy for your Avatar on XBLA, register here for a code download in December.

Here’s a little more info. on what the freebie is about via Kotaku.

And if I don’t get a chance to later, Happy Thanksgiving to all of my readers. I hope you enjoy your extended weekend starting, well, about now, actually.

Me? I’ll be cooking a turducken tomorrow morning.

Yes. A turducken.

Playstation 3.

As I went to pick up my copy of Final Fantasy III this evening for my DS, I couldn’t help but notice there were some kids already sitting out in line for Playstation 3 in hopes of getting one of the four released around America.

Maybe it’s just me, and I’m just less of a “hardcore” gamer than others, but I refuse to sit out two or more nights during Winter in the futile hopes of obtaining a system that is more difficult to get than one of Willy Wonka’s Golden Tickets. Again, I’m holding off on PS3 until the madness (and price) subsides.

I did play Excite Truck on the Wii, and as weird and little as the controller is, after just a few short moments, I was utilizing the controller like a steering wheel, and it felt just as natural as one. While the graphics didn’t make me scream “Oh my God” and wet myself, I did find the game remarkably fun, and the system itself is neat. I like the idea of the “Mii” avatar to play in games like Wii Sports. It’s nice to see a system include pack-in games again, even if it’s little Read the rest of this entry

That Old Square Magic.

Since October 31, Final Fantasy XII has pretty much owned my world. This is a fairly common practice for Square-Enix games. Kingdom Hearts II did the same earlier this year, and now this little slice of greatness is just….

I was worried about the “new” combat system, but in all actuality, it provides the “wolf in sheep’s clothing” adage. It doesn’t look or even come across as the same turn-based combat, but it stays true to the series roots. It feels right, which is vitally important for an old-school fan. Not to mention that the graphics are beautiful with typical jaw-dropping cinematics, and the story pulls you in instantly. It already is proving to be in depth and interesting, and is more fantasy based than some of the more sci-fi outings. I still have a long way to go in the game, but the initial impression and first few hours of the game have the makings of something truly special. I’m also glad they chose to make Vaan (the lead protagonist) an interesting character instead of a whiny and sullen loner. Cloud pulled it off, but some of the series other heroes didn’t.

In Read the rest of this entry

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