Author Topic: Final Fantasy  (Read 15758 times)

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Offline PatMan33

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #60 on: July 31, 2015, 01:03:18 pm »
The chocobo breeding stuff was a great sidequest! Racing is a good diversion from the main game. Plus those rewards!!

The problem with Bravely Default (which I put over 100 hours into and fussed around with extensively) is pretty straightforward. Enemy variety and attack variety are very light. Additionally, the combat system does not appear to have been stress tested enough because it is not balanced at all with the job system. But what does that all mean?

Enemy variety is very slim, there just aren't a ton of different monsters out there. Furthermore, the enemies that can inflict status effects are few and far between so simply because of the numbers status effects don't happen very often. And because of this there is no need to train up jobs like Time Mage, Salve-Maker, or Arcanist (among others). The simpler path is to just kill the enemy before it inflicts a status effect, but most of the time the enemy you face can't even do that anyway. And that sucks a lot of the strategy out of the gameplay. My go-to example for this is the Monk class. It just so happens that Monk is my favorite class in these kinds of games, so I chose it early. Monk is absurdly overpowered and its bonuses put it beyond most other classes in terms of damage done. You can pummel nearly every non-boss enemy to death in the first turn such that enemies don't even have a chance to attack you before they die. This is also a larger problem with the game in that most random encounters can be solved by stacking all of your attack turns up and hammering the enemy into the ground with zero chance or retaliation.

The game itself is too easy. But it's easy for a very bad reason, a reason I consider structural. It's not enough to just give enemies more HP and say the game is more balanced because enemies don't seem to have a good grasp of the combat mechanics. RPGs are about optimizing your strategy, and in this case the strategy presents itself right at the start and never changes. It doesn't matter what skills you gain, what new jobs you unlock, or how you build your team. The strategy to win never changes because enemies never adjust. Maybe they will fix this in the sequel, but that is neither here nor there. Enemies are pushovers with the exception of some of the bosses, but even then the bosses are only more difficult because they can't be wiped on the first turn. An enemy will rarely put up defensive skills or try to otherwise diminish your ability to fight it and oftentimes (as mentioned above) they simply never have the chance to.

Bravely Default has a lot of great ideas there, but as a complete package it doesn't meld together. Square did a poor job balancing the mechanics of combat and leveling and it leads to a game that is pathetically easy and very unrewarding.

Not to mention the game is almost entirely linear and the story itself is completely asinine. Definitely in line with the caliber of story and characterization Final Fantasy has turned to in the recent decade. And that just sucks. Bravely Default had so much potential and unfortunately Square did not capitalize on it at all. But they made money with it and are making a sequel and calling it the rebirth of classic RPGs... which Bravely Default is not. They're selling an idea but not a product that can stand with the greats of old.

This is a shadow of what RPGs once were and this rebirth is very disheartening for me. These guys have games like Chrono Trigger, Final Fantasy IV, Final Fantasy VI, and Secret of Mana in their catalog. You'd think they would actually look to why these games were great, rather than constructing their RPG rebirth on the most shallow aspects of any one of them. And to a certain degree I have to blame the fans as well for letting so much of this slide. Yes, there are some very vocal people out there but their pleas get washed out by the sheer amount of idiots that think Lightning is the best thing to happen to characterization and who think FFX was the series' high point. I think a lot of the fans are latching onto aspects other than core game design. And I still play my games for the mechanics first. If the game doesn't have logical or at least serviceable systems, I'm going to have major problems with it because at the end of the day I am here to play a game. All else comes after the mechanics.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2015, 01:06:03 pm by PatMan33 »

Offline dndfreak

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #61 on: July 31, 2015, 01:24:19 pm »
Pat, Bravely Default wasn't developed by Squeenix. They were the publisher, nothing more. It's a really bad example for you to keep drawing on. Bravely Default was Silicon Studios, the company responsible for 3D Dot Game Heroes but mostly just builds graphics engines and other middleware. The gameplay found in Bravely Default was not a system designed nor developed by Square, and using it as a claim that Square can't make battle systems is a failure as an argument regardless of your stance on the game.

Offline PatMan33

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #62 on: July 31, 2015, 01:39:17 pm »
Huh! I guess you're right. I was wrong about the developer.

Offline Ultimatum

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #63 on: July 31, 2015, 01:41:24 pm »
I just checked the wiki page and lt lists Square as developers alongside the other studio,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bravely_Default  <-----

Offline PatMan33

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #64 on: July 31, 2015, 01:47:08 pm »
Either way I don't think it changes any of my complaints. Except for the bit at the end where I went into my personal thoughts about Square, which I fought with myself about including. Usually because my personal thoughts are what gets ripped up in stuff like this and then everyone ignores my actual argument. Case in point...

Next time I won't include my personal thoughts. Gotta go with the gut on that one every time. I don't know why I ignore it.

Cue the start of ten weeks of me kicking myself for including it. GAD sucks. Uggggggh...

Offline PatMan33

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #65 on: July 31, 2015, 01:56:36 pm »
So anyway, back on topic. Bravely Default sucks.

You can respond to that now because my argument is in no way invalid. I just look like the idiot retard that I am thanks to captain buzzkill up there.

Offline Kaizer

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #66 on: July 31, 2015, 02:02:24 pm »
Ok pat, I'm not a good at writing out rebuttals, but here's my 2 cents


Materia isn't as amazing a system as you think it to be, it was basically just a dumbed down job/magicite system from the prior games and even then the more unique attributes of the system were more of a hassle, such as forcing you to now link ALL materia to even make most spells useful for the purpose of clearing trash fights. Sure you could swap around the elemental attributes and stuff for weapons and armor, but as far as I remember you can't swap materia mid fight, and I highly doubt you'd have the hindsight while playing your first time to swap in that thunder materia to do some extra damage against that suprise mecha boss about to come up in the next room. The same goes for giving yourself resistances, its a total moot point when everyone in your party can learn Esuna/Cure and most status debuffs aren't horribly crippling that you can't just continue to swing your sword at the enemies until they die.

Then there's ATB, I don't hate it nor do I enjoy it, personally I prefer turn based to plan out my order of attacks and know whose going when, with ATB you have generally zero idea of when your opponent will attack and it can leave you in some annoying situations where you queued up that cure 3 to save a team mates life only to have them die because the monster got to attack just as you finish and makes you waste that heal entirely.

What i'm trying to say is that ff-7 is just the mentally challenged offspring of ff-6, which should have been remade instead of 7 clearly

Offline PatMan33

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #67 on: July 31, 2015, 02:22:00 pm »
Nah that was a fine response!

I'm not sure though that the magicite system and the materia system can be compared in that fashion. Magicite (FFVI, right?) worked in that it would grant a character an ability and once you trained that ability up, you could keep it on a character even after the associated magicite was removed. But then it would cost you the use of that magicite's esper as well. On the other hand, materia grants abilities so long as you keep that materia on a character and removing it also removes the ability no matter how much you've trained it.

I did not include it in my post, I think. Wait, let me check. No, I didn't say anything about it but to your point about hindsight and knowing what to expect, you are right. A player wouldn't know how to use so-and-so materia on this boss versus that boss. That only comes with multiple playthroughs. (which I recommend!) Though for random encounters you can definitely infer what types of creatures you will be up against because FFVII (unlike Bravely Default) has lots of enemy variety and each "level" represents some kind of elemental affinity that can be cleaned from two or three random encounters in a specific area.

On your point about Esuna, while the Heal materia can be picked up early (after you leave Midgar/turorial zone), accruing the amount of AP required to learn Esuna takes a long while and you'll be leveling up your other materia as well, though once you do get it, Esuna is very useful. FFVII does also have some completely broken abilities in the form of the Enemy Skill materia. Big Guard comes to mind. So broken.

But I would contend that while the materia system isn't perfect and can absolutely be gamed or manipulated, it works together more coherently with the other systems in place, where a game like BD has systems that do not mesh at all. Part of the fun of the materia system is that it is broken - that's also why I praise FFVI so much and even like it more... because it's more broken. But you have to earn that brokenness, if that makes any sense. You still have to toil away and learn the system before you can figure out how to manipulate aspects of the system.

Make no mistake, I have no problem with games that end up being broken after a certain point, in fact I prefer that type of game. If you can make your characters into gods or "the walking apocalypse" as my one buddy calls it, that is awesome. That's exactly what I look for in RPGs. And I think part of my issue with BD was that it breaks far too early, like... level 10. That's nuts. I wanna put in at least a couple dozen hours and get to level 50, 60, or 70 before the game's mechanics start to wobble and break. It should feel earned, rather than simply poor design.

As for your complaints about ATB, I agree and can feel your pain. Lining up attacks in ATB is especially difficult when you have the system set to "active" rather than "wait". And even with "wait" mode enabled you can't depend on attacks having the desired effect. Which is why I usually just go "active" because **** it haha!!

But on your final point I disagree entirely. Though maybe it is more of a technical type of disagreement. I would consider FFVI and FFIX to be similar types of games mechanically speaking (IX is the one that treats accessory equips like magicite in VI). I wouldn't put FFVII in that same category in terms of VII's combat and equip mechanics. Now, in terms of story, characters, and pacing? I'd say FFVI is absolutely superior to FFVII and that VII frankly rips off a lot of what VI did well and amps it up to 11. Which isn't really doing anything new, different, or better. It's just making a caricature of what came before.

Dude great response! I love it. Keep responding, don't be timid, man. You play all these games so you have valid input to add. It gets us talking which is hard to find anymore on the net in snippets longer than two sentences. :D

Offline Krakow Sam

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #68 on: July 31, 2015, 02:28:24 pm »
Lurk, Pat if I might interject?

Final fantasy is bad because their swords are too big.

Check mate.

Four years on and none of you have managed to find an answer to this ultimate move.
Sam is basically right, he's just cranky.

Offline Kaizer

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #69 on: July 31, 2015, 02:31:29 pm »
I agree with you on Bravely Default, not sure if you played it on the hardest difficulty or not but it was a bit more challenging but even at everything capped out you had to use cheese strategies for most of the big end-game fights since bosses would basically one shot you without stacked resistance, but hasten world + super jump was so silly to watch as oroboros sat there unable to do anything to 4 kids playing leap frog with his head.


I'm personally excited for the remake since 7 was still a fun game. Unfortunately I highly expect Cloud will be his dull emo self that square made him into. That and honeybee inn will get cut....

Offline PatMan33

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #70 on: July 31, 2015, 02:35:40 pm »
The reason I didn't want them to mess with the mechanics too much was because at least if they left them the same, there'd still be something fun for me to play between listening to Cloud bitch with full voice acting in 7.1 surround. But if they start fussing with those mechanics... maaaan. I dunno, the word "cinematic" keeps flashing in my mind and that's no good. That's just no good at all.

Because Square is the kind of company that would use all their "innovations" from the last few Final Fantasy games in this remake. Part of the fun of the characters in the older FF games was what was implied or left unsaid. New FF has all the subtly of a brick through the window. :P


(been looking for a chance to use this one for a while and I think this is as close as I'll get)

Offline dndfreak

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #71 on: July 31, 2015, 02:36:41 pm »
I just checked the wiki page and lt lists Square as developers alongside the other studio,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bravely_Default  <-----

It says that with no source, and on the entire page the only party mentioned as having hand in development was Silicon. I actually checked the Bravely Default wikia, which lists only Silicon as developer. http://finalfantasy.wikia.com/wiki/Bravely_Default

Anyways...

On the topic of JRPG strategy, I will say the only one I've actually played that takes more than auto attacks, having a white mage and making numbers bigger has been Golden Sun (though the DS one is much easier than the original two). Golden Sun has what's called the Djinn system, which is comparable to Materia except that you get a million more and rather than equipment having a set number of slots, each weapon had it's own special attack and experience as well. Djinn that are equipped (Set) each have four elements, and the number and combination of each element on a character determines every aspect of their stats, not to mention their entire list of available spells.

In addition to normal spells, each Djinn also has a unique active which could be anything from buffs or debuffs to damage to a full party revive to all manner of status ailments in all combinations. Using a Djinn for their active changes them from Set to Standby, meaning that when a character uses these abilities their stats and spell list both start to decrease.

Any character can spend up to six standby Djinn at a time, no matter who put them there, to invoke a summon of any of a large list of possible element combinations. The more elements the lower the raw damage, but it becomes hybridized and pushes past defenses easier. Each invoked summon also gives the character which summoned them a buff to damage of the elements used for the rest of the battle, and after a couple turns, the Djinn are returned as Set to their original owners. What this means is that if the character which does the summoning has all their Djinn still set, their numbers will be higher and the Summon's damage will be higher, but if they invoke summons not of their element the buff will be useless. The more Djinn you have on standby the bigger summons you can make and the more efficient your turns, but having too few Djinn set leaves your defenses crippled and your party open to attack. There are some crucial Djinn actives that are situational, such as a max revive for a single character, and you will have to decide for each ability you use if it's worth making yourself more fragile as a whole and if you can afford to not have that ability for another four or five rounds of combat. The more aggressively you Summon the faster you get your Djinn back, but the damage each deals and the buff they grant is drastically weaker as well.

Essentially what I'm saying is that if you think Materia maakes FFVII an in-depth customizable JRPG, you probably haven't played enough Golden Sun and you should go do that.

Realistically speaking, the fact is that FFVII's ATB system actually relied on pure hardware time, and was built to handle impossibly low framerates only (which is part of the reason why the PC port was infamously unplayable back in the day). The battle system needed to be re-written anyways in order to support modern hardware and cross-platforming, so I see no real harm in tweaking a few things here and there. Keep in mind that the article you linked does NOT say anything about mechanics changes, only visual, and using the artistic direction and style of Advent Children for reference. I took it to mean largely a cosmetic style change, which probably involves the same changes made with FFX where there was a dynamic camera and characters moved fluidly back and forth to attack. Even better, they may go a step beyond and we'll have the equivalent of a 3D rendered Chrono Trigger, if they're using the fluidity of AC as their frame of reference.

Even if they do change up something, sure, it could be worse, but that doesn't mean VII is perfect and untouchable either. I doubt it would ever near the level of depth Golden Sun added to Materia, but maybe a bit more toward Chrono Trigger in terms of in-game action and team coordination can't be a bad thing.

Offline PatMan33

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #72 on: July 31, 2015, 02:38:13 pm »
I just checked the wiki page and lt lists Square as developers alongside the other studio,

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bravely_Default  <-----

It says that with no source, and on the entire page the only party mentioned as having hand in development was Silicon. I actually checked the Bravely Default wikia, which lists only Silicon as developer. http://finalfantasy.wikia.com/wiki/Bravely_Default

Wanted to respond to this real quick before I get to the meat of your post, dnd. I was looking around at lots of older reviews in the last ten or twenty minutes and it seems to be a very common mistake, which I guess is unsurprising since games media sucks. But lots of reviews are also saying Square made it. I suppose Square having an interest in publishing more reinforces that, though the point still stands that Square did not make the game.

Offline dndfreak

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #73 on: July 31, 2015, 02:45:12 pm »
I just remember the tidbit about BD because it was around the same time Theaterythm launched and I'd seen an interview with the devs of that game, who wasn't Square either. They were basically just fans of the franchise who got the idea for the FF offshoot and Square said go ahead, and better yet, we'll publish it. The BD team had a similar story where it was guys who were big fans of early Final Fantasy titles who just wanted to make something more in that vein and they reached out to Square. Wish I still had it somewhere, but it's lost to the internet somewhere by now.

Offline PatMan33

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Re: Final Fantasy
« Reply #74 on: July 31, 2015, 02:48:46 pm »
Funny that you mention Golden Sun. I was supposed to borrow it from a friend of mine in 2002. Never did and he moved away, so I never got to play it.

I've been told I should play Grandia I and II. But Golden Sun is on the list before them because I also want to play Golden Sun 2. I emulated it once but never played past the first ten minutes. Emulation isn't the same. Though more to your later point, I would agree that FFVII is in no way deeply customizable. Its got basic customization, but I really like the way it all works together. It makes a nice, complete package.

Funny though that you mention the PC version of FFVII being unplayable back in the day. I never owned a PS1 (or a PS2 until a couple years ago) and originally played (and replayed many many times) FFVII on PC. I've still got my old discs and that wonky box it all came in. Never encountered many issues with FFVII PC until operating systems started to evolve, and mostly then it was just a crash at the chocobo races. But maybe I was lucky and my experience was atypical. I also wouldn't worry too much about having to rewrite the ATB system for newer hardware because if it really is tied to framerates, they can just scrap that and bind it to a character's speed statistic.

Sorry, fans of Square Enix's Active Time Battle system, but it sounds like the Final Fantasy 7 Remake is going a different direction for its combat.

Sorry, fans of Square Enix's Active Time Battle system, but it sounds like the Final Fantasy 7 Remake is going a different direction for its combat. Speaking to Official PlayStation Magazine, game director Tetsuya Nomura said that the team will be making "dramatic changes" to the game's fights. "And of course, that being said we want to clarify: We’re not going to be changing it into a shooter or something like that. We are going to be bringing dramatic changes, but we want to make sure it’s still recognizable."

Though I do read that as "they are changing the mechanics"... so I disagree with you there.

On Theatrhythm. Theatrhythm is awesome! The first game is excellent!! The second game is okay. It has lots more songs, which is cool. But they tweaked the mechanics in Theatrhythm 2 and it's both easier and less-reliable. Which disappoints me.