So here we are at disc two. The last time we saw our hero Squall, he was being impaled in the chest by a 6 foot icicle and free-falling about 4 stories down to the floor, surely this means he must be dead, or perhaps in a very complicated coma, or worse maybe he... OH NEVERMIND HE JUST GOT BETTER.
Oct 19, 2011
Disc 2 is where all the plot holes in this game's story begin, and it's because it's where the game begins developing the story, which is a giant plothole in itself. For example, no reason is given for Squall's survival from this incident. He doesn't even have a scratch or a contusion, he's just fine and dandy in disc 2.
But anyway in disc 2 is where we get to know better another character named Laguna. Quite frankly he's the best this game has to offer in terms of character development. Laguna is a guy in the galbadian army and your party is constantly passing out and having dreams about him. He has two other friends, Ward and Kiros, who are with him in all his adventures.
Laguna is kind of a Forrest Gump in this game. You see his story through flashbacks, and he's also a complete idiot, but he's also likeable. He goes through a lot of tough stuff but is always optimistic about the future, and cares for those around him. It's no wonder why everyone thinks he's the best character in this game, he's got a decent story and is not an asshole like our friend Squall.
I'll go as far as to say this game SHOULD have been about laguna and not about the idiots from SeeD. Would've made for a better story with better characters and better emotional moments.
So in the recurring dreams you find that Laguna has moved to the quiet town of winhill and is kind of making a life there with his love interest Raine and a little girl called Ellone, while still having his dreams of adventure and of being a journalist. The moments you see in the dreams with him are very touching, But most of his story has nothing to do with the main story in the game so most of these dreams are filler and useless.
Anyways a lot of stuff happens in this disc to our dear group of dumbasses. They get thrown in jail, then escape, then their homes get bombarded by freakin' ICBMs! Love how this world is hi-tech but also full of monsters and magic weaving retards. You get your first "ship" which is the whole Garden you used to live, which is basically a town, that can lift off and fly using the power of... magic? technology? who knows, it's never explained.
What follows is one of the most infamous scenes from FF8, and the point where everyone (well, mostly those with a working brain) gives up on the story of this game and just says "welll fuck it im gonna finish this up anyways". Turns out all the characters in your party were together when they were kids, on the same orphanage, which was owned by sorceress edea herself, the same you're going after, but they don't remember any of it till now. This moment went down as the most ridiculous plot twist in gaming history and with good reason. Why can't they remember all that? well, MAGIC DID IT. Why? well who knows, maybe the GFs they use make them forget, nobody knows it's never explained clearly. Just like most of the important things in this game.
After you manage to get ahold of yourself after laughing histerically for ours on end by reading all the ridiculous dialog that happens in this scene, you notice our heroes have decided to go and kill what can be considered as their own mother. Well that's nice isn't it? So there we go! We fight Seifer, which is now the sorceress' Knight and is also a huge pushover through the entirety of the game, and then we fight the sorceress. After we beat those two, Rinoa falls unconscious into a coma, and it's the end of disc 2!
A lot of ridiculous stuff happens between all that, like a concert where your characters play instruments, and well Squall treats Rinoa like the whore she is all the time in this disc. This is important to know because what comes next is comedy golden. See you later for Disc 3!
Oct 16, 2011
I almost forgot to post about this but I got a new Remix published up at OCRemix. It's a megaman 9 Remix of the Concrete man theme, I did this remix for the Concrete Man EP, a sort of companion for the recently released Mega man 9 Album.
Oct 13, 2011
So after watching the AWESOME reviews of FF8 by Spoony I decided to revisit Final Fantasy 8 again and see if its as bad as I remember. Why you ask? well after playing through the horrible vomit-inducing shitfest and sorry excuse for an RPG called Final Fantasy 13 I realized that 8 would be a masterpiece now.
So Final Fantasy 8, the previous worse Final Fantasy in my book, actually had some stuff going for it. The graphics were amazing for its time, and the way they mixed CG Movies at key moments while you could control your character through the movie was pretty impressive. I also like the art direction in this game, it's pretty cohesive and the characters don't look too ridiculous. Also, Final Fantasy 8 had some amazing music in it. Some of the best songs in the whole series are in this game. The music just got worse from this one on.
aaand that's about it.
So here's my experience disc by disc. Today, Disc 1:
In the first disc you are introduced to one of the worst aspects of FF8, if not the worse. The Draw and Junction system. In previous Final Fantasies, you could obtain magic by buying it on a store, or from espers, by obtaining materia or simply learning it from different jobs. Here you obtain magic by "drawing" it from monsters. Which sounds interesting until you realize that you will spend hours on end just drawing magic from a monster to stock them.
You want to stock magic because you can "junction" it to your stats. By Junctioning magic to stats you make the stats grow, so you want to have a lot of different types of magic, all stacked to 100, to get the most out of it. for at least 3 characters. Believe me, thats A LOT of drawing. Lots of hours just drawing and drawing from monsters. It's tedious as hell. (please watch this. That gentlemen, is final fantasy 8 in a nutshell. You can stop reading this and just watch that video)
After you get all the magic you want, you just save it there and never spend it. Yep that's right, you don't want to spend your magic because it will reduce your stats, which makes the point of obtaining it pretty useless. This game also has another fatal flaw, the monsters level as you do, so in this game, you DON'T WANT TO LEVEL UP. That's pretty backwards to everything we know about FF, right?
Since I know all the exploits you can do to this system, I can get amazingly powerful (which I did) without even ever fighting. Since I can obtain an ability that nullifies random encounters, the only fights I do are the mandatory bosses. I'm actually on the 4th disc right now, and I'm only level 18.
No other final fantasy allows this kind of bullshit. This is the most broken system of ANY RPG I've ever played. It's completely retarded that the best way to get powerful in this game is through a card minigame called triple triad than by fighting. That you want to AVOID fighting at all costs to maximize your returns.
Let me empathize this: the best way to play final fantasy 8, is by NOT FIGHTING, instead it's best to play a completely retarded card game to obtain the magic you need. Also, NEVER use the magic you obtain. Just limit break or attack the mobs all the time. It's useless to level up because the monsters will just level up with you.
You also get GFs which are the usual summons from Final Fantasy, but again, you don't want to use them except for special cases because you do more damage by just using your normal attacks anyway. The serve more as a meatshield than as a powerful attack.
Anyways that is all I have to say about the drawing/junctioning system but if you are still not convinced, please watch spoony's review. He explains in detail how broken this system is.
I got sidetracked, lets go back to Disc 1:
So after a rather impressive intro where we are led to think that Squall is actually a kickass character, we are introduced to two of the main Characters, Squall, the hero of the story, and Quistis, who has the hots for Squall and is also her instructor in this mercenary complex which is more like a japanese high school from the future.
Disc 1 is basically about introducing the main characters of the story. These are:
Squall, as I previously mentioned, the hero of the story, and one of the precursors of the emo movement. Seriously this guy is beyond annoying, but I gotta say that after replaying this shitfest my opinion on Squall has changed and I don't hate it that much now, because I realized that the poor guy is surrounded by idiots and a whore. I can now relate to him not caring about his teammates, and ignoring the huge whore that is Rinoa all the time. I would be pissed off if I was surrounded by dimwits and dumbasses.
Actually Squall isn't that much of an emo, he's more of an asshole, and yes he gets pretty emo at several points, but as I said he's more of an asshole most of the time, which I can relate.
Rinoa oh by all hells I hate this skank. This woman is a complete whore. Picture this: you are in a party minding your business and a girl you're obviously not attracted to comes to talk to you and the first thing she says is that she has the hots for you. Not only that but she forces you to dance with her. That my friends is what we call a whore.
Most annoying is that for some explainable reason all the dumbasses Squall has to hang out with are trying to force him to be with her. He even says so in a scene. Yeah, not to mention this girl is devoid of any personality other than wanting to bang Squall. Did I mention she had the hots for Squall and for another guy named Seifer at the same time? yeah... whore.
Quistis is Squall's instructor. At first she wanted to fuck with Squall REAL BAD. But then after Rinoa appeared and she saw she couldn't compete with that level of whoriness she just called it quits. We get almost no backstory on her so we don't care for her most of the time. I do pick her as a party member because well, compared to the rest, this is the less annoying character in the game and the only one that doesn't make me want to stab babies.
Zell.... oh Zell you little rascal. I so hate this idiot. This guy acts like a child and is ALSO devoid of any personality. If you ask me to describe this guy, all i can tell is that he wears silly shorts, likes to punch things and has the mind of an 8 year old kid.
Selphie is this final fantasy's mandatory jailbait. Contrary to all the other supporting cast, she does have a personality, and an annoying one at that.
Irvine what can I say about this guy. He's a cowboy stereotype, a complete pussy and always find new ways to dishonor the gun-wielders in final fantasy history. Also devoid of personality.
I guess the makers of this game wanted to focus on Squall and Rinoa's "Love Story" (I just laughed out loud at that concept) and thats why the supporting cast of this game feel like cardboard cutouts. I'm going to hell for this but hell, even Final Fantasy 13 at least TRIED to develop all their characters. Oh well.
So Disc one is about getting accustomed to the systems of this game, and meeting your team and the main villian, the sorceress. For some reason she wants to destroy the world (oh my what a surprise) and you are sent on a mission to stop her. She also has allied with Squall's school rival, Seifer, which also gets laid with Rinoa. more on that later.
Anyways in the mission Irvine pussies out, Quistis' almost fucks up her part and everything goes to shit. In the end Squall has to face the sorceress, and he gets STABBED IN THE CHEST BY A GIANT ICICLE. and we are left at that cliffhanger until Disc 2.
A lot of unimportant things happen, between the beginning of the story and that, but again, it's just filler. Except for the recurring dreams your party has about a guy named Laguna. And Laguna is the saving grace of this game.
More on that the next time, where I talk about my experience with disc 2.
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