In which FFVIII ruins my life

the melancholy of ff8

I was too naive…

Even though my attempt at analyzing Final Fantasy VIII didn’t go anywhere, my game continued all the way to the end….and into its immediate successor, IX.

It feels as if all the hangups regarding JRPGs which I’ve voiced elsewhere on this blog have all been silenced, and that I’m 12 years old again. But not in the same way – my childhood self was content to merely coast through these things; my adult self wants to break things open and understand the mechanics a bit more by looking up things on the internet. There goes what little remains of my life.

Specifically: I complained earlier that the sort of character-development gameplay offered by the RPG genre is boring in its essentials, and requires extensive tweaking or streamlining to become fun. For whatever reason, I no longer feel that way.

Final Fantasy IX is a case in point. Compared to VIII’s Junction system shenanigans, IX is a simple, almost by-the-books affair. Combat unfolds at a glacial pace, and there is very little that is new. Indeed, IX represents a downright conservative 180 on VIII’s experimentalism. Yet I am finding my current game in it (my first serious crack at it in almost a decade) to be just as engaging as the previous entry. Something clicked back into place.

Part of this is because IX is a uniquely charming game. And I am becoming convinced that, nostalgia aside, the Playstation 1 era FFs are masterpieces in their own right (well, my opinion on VII is still in suspense). IX should merit a post here when I am further along in my game. One post, mind you. Not a whole series.

I guess this means I am a JRPG fanboy again. What have I done…

About Josh W

Scribbler and doodler
This entry was posted in Our Allies in Nippon, pop culture and its discontents and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to In which FFVIII ruins my life

  1. Julian Barkin says:

    Sorry Joshua, but I’m on Team Squall. FFVIII ALL THE WAY!!!!

  2. tickledtk says:

    The PlayStation era as definitely the best for Final Fantasy. As far as I’m concerned, 6 – 10 were the best games. Since 10, things have gone a bit south.

    • Josh W says:

      I seem to be in the minority opinion of thinking that XII is one of the better games, and I’d definitely include the SNES years as part of the golden era, but yeah, I mark X as the beginning of the end.

      • tickledtk says:

        I actually did like 12, though it could have been much better. I think they tried something really different in terms of story and pace. It may not have been the best thing in the world, but at least they took a chance. I just consider X as the last great one because X-2 followed. I wish that game never existed (but I’ll probably play it once I’m done with X HD. I’m too obsessed with the franchise to skip one willy nilly)

  3. Julian Barkin says:

    Joshua. This was one of the most epic games I ever played in my youth. Everything was so awesome about it! Squall’s character and his introversion until the beautiful Rinoa brings him out of his shell into love, the colour full world, the Espers becoming powerful nukes in the game once again (oh main the insanity to get Bahamut and Eden!!!), Cid cameo (lol.) … this was my childhood or teenhood.

    … oh man this post is a year old??? Ugh.

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