auronlu: Four warriors of light from Final Fantasy I (ffi)
So, Sev and Rina (see, I finally spotted your nickname, TOOK ME ABOUT TIME) have finished their glorious playthrough of Final Fantasy I on [community profile] moogle_university, and I should jot down my wobbly little thoughts about the game before I forget: about playing it, and about the story (is there one?)

Playing FF was a heck of a lot more enjoyable than I had anticipated, partly because I went all in, shamelessly importing four characters from the magical gamespace multiverse to flesh out the Warriors of Light. Through them, I could inject personality and commentary into a very simple game whose party was only as interesting as you imagined it to be. If I hadn't done that, the game would've been been flat like Zork, or like ... well, early Might & Magic, not that anyone here played that puppy.

I came into Final Fantasy I thinking, "Well, this is the first Final Fantasy, so I mustn't expect the complexities and story plotting and characters of the later games. It'll be simple and clunky and the game mechanics will probably drive me INSAAANE." By virtue of the fact that I was playing a remastered edition, I didn't have to deal with the arbitrary game mechanics of the original, so I could just sit back and play it. I don't feel any burning desire to play games on PROUD or HARD or ARTIFICIALLY DIFFICULT mode. I've done graduate school three times; that's enough for me.

I liked FFI. It really did have a certain charm, despite its stock fantasy simplicity; it did have many of the beloved game and story elements that have made Final Fantasy enduring. I could believe that this game hooked enough players to rescue Square from near-bankruptcy. Even odd little things like the iconic black mage with the Jawa eyes contributed to making it just...a little...different.

Of course, all the D&D flashbacks gave me the nostalgia factor I was missing by not coming to Final Fantasy until VII-VIII. So that helped.

So, some in-game stuff. Spoilers to the ending, such as it was.

Meta about Final Fantasy I )
auronlu: (joggerz)

Above: My 30-year-old hand-painted D&D figures face off against my Final Fantasy figures for the last remaining die from my basic D&D set.

([personal profile] heavenscalyx painted the woman in front center with the staff and hammer, my longtime fighter-cleric Moy Ruadh; to her left are a D&D Ranger (archer) whose name I've forgotten, a Magic User in blue named Gadrath the Unfortunate (Mom's main character), Dad's Haakon in full plate mail and shield at far left, and a bunch of fighters behind them including Gaon Birchlurcher the Elf in the blue cloak (my very first character), Raknar the Dwarf, my grog/retainer fighter Gregor Trueheart with the red-striped green shield, a couple halflings and a random fighter, and in the far back, my Aunt's thief Ralph Tharn beside my poor old cleric Brother Brussels (as in brussel sprout) with his vegetable coat of arms on his shield. Most of the better-painted figures were done by my mother — including Tharn, unfortunate shemagh and all — whereas the messy and garish monsters in the back are my feeble attempts.

Note: I've made a table of all the D&D monsters ported into original Final Fantasy bestiary. It's nearly everything except the bosses, and even some of those!
auronlu: Four warriors of light from Final Fantasy I (ffi)
Once again, thanks to [community profile] moogle_university for inspiring this recap!

Final Fantasy I Recap past episodes: Intro | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6
D&D roots of FF | Roleplay in Final Fantasy


Momo: Guys, I'd just like to remind our faithful readers of what we've been missing out on by not playing the original NES version:

~ (Source: Hardcoregaming original FF1 synopsis)
Rei: No comment.
Nina: "Erupts...from the FIEND' s...?"
Spoo: *sweatbeads*


Final Fantasy I Recap, Episode 7: "Let's do the timewarp again!"
On with the recap, already! )
auronlu: Four warriors of light from Final Fantasy I (ffi)
Once again, thanks [community profile] moogle_university to for inspiring this recap!

Final Fantasy I Playthrough past episodes: Intro | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5
D&D roots of FF | Roleplay in Final Fantasy


D&D Otygh (also NeoOtygh)
-- hheeeey, I never noticed before that "Ochu" is just a Japanese transliteration of this classic D&D monster! Also, "Flan" is called"Black Pudding" -- another original D&D monster -- in Final Fantasy I!)

Rei: Hey, guys! Lookit what Bibi gave me -- a list of all the name changes between NES and PSX versions of this game.
Momo: MADPONY? Catman? Mancat? Oh, gosh, the NES translations are so goofy!
Nina: *looks pointedly at "Spoo"*
Spoo: *looks at how many monsters were ported straight from 1st ed D&D Monster Manual list*


Final Fantasy I Recap, Episode 6: "Much in the Way That Bricks Don't"

On with the playthrough! )
auronlu: (CeilingCloud)
One huge change in Final Fantasy games is that characters became more and more complex, with preset backstories, lines of dialogue and character development within the game. Increasingly, we become observers, puppetmasters, and/or passive participants, discovering what makes characters tick as individuals and coming to know them as fictional characters while (at the same time) seeing their worlds and acting out their adventures in their shoes.


Somewhat incoherent ramble about preset characters and Roleplaying... )


auronlu: Four warriors of light from Final Fantasy I (ffi)
Once again, thanks to [community profile] moogle_university for inspiring this recap!

Final Fantasy I Playthrough past episodes: Intro | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4
D&D roots of FF



Final Fantasy I Playthrough, Episode 5: "Ninja Wizards"

On with the playthrough, already! )
auronlu: Four warriors of light from Final Fantasy I (ffi)
Back to Part 3

Once again, thanks to [community profile] moogle_university for inspiring this playthrough/recap!


Momo: So, hey, guys, I hotwired my orb crystal thingie with a couple Light Curtains and an Ether to show a video...

(Opening FMV from PS1 Final Fantasy I & II Remastered Edition)

Rei: The heck is this?
Nina: Spoo looks very heroic, to be sure...but...well... shouldn't there be four Warriors of Light?
Momo: Well, see, I thought that if the Prince of Elfheim saw this, then maybe he'd be bowled over by Spoo's bishie awesomeness!
Spoo: ...
Rei: So you edited out us clowns and tried to make him look epic?
Momo: Yep. And let's start calling him "Warrior of Light" in front of the prince. It sounds a lot more noble than "Spoo," don't you think?
Nina: That's... very thoughtful, Momo.
Spoo: *blushing furiously*

Final Fantasy I Playthrough, Episode 4: "Of Tea and Airships"
auronlu: Four warriors of light from Final Fantasy I (ffi)
Again, I wanna thank Seventhe and Lassarina for inspiring this mega Final Fantasy marathon. I really, really needed a brain break after relatives and holiday stress. Playing Final Fantasy I has been just the cure. (My early caveats about it being old and a bit rudimentary have fallen's great fun!)

While playing these first few days, I've had many thinky thoughts. So. FINAL FANTASY META. SPOILER FREE. You do not have to have been following my silly playthrough to read these comments.

Final Fantasy I box art (note enclosures)
More Rulebooks 1st Edition, Great looking rulebooks just have some scuffing on front
AD&D manuals (same set I owned)
Topic the First: How vintage Dungeons & Dragons shaped Final Fantasy I, and how FF games immediately began to pull away from their D&D roots.

auronlu: (joggerz)
[Back to Part 2]

Once again: since the Four Warriors of Light in Final Fantasy have zero personality, I've borrowed characters from another very old game. (Whose main character's default name, "Ryu," I played as "Spoo.")


Rei: Hey, guys. Hold up. We need to talk.
Nina: What's up, Rei?
Rei: Well, it's like this. You've got some healing magic now, and Momo's got her artillery--
Spoo: *sweatbeads*
Rei: Right. And Spoo's buff and all, so he don't need magic. But I'm a Thief. And a thief's got needs.
Nina: Haven't we found enough treasure in the last dungeon crawl to keep you happy?
Rei: Well, sure, if you consider weapons we already bought in the last Elfheim garage sale to be worth an hour of slogging through undead crap. But I've got a job to do.
Momo: Steal stuff.
Nina: Okay, okay. But this is one of those early Final Fantasy games. We don't start unlocking the good skills until we restore the first Crystal.
Rei: Good skills? You mean like 'turn all undead to powder'?
Nina: *prim* Would you rather I left them to you and Spoo?
Spoo: *dives for cover*
Rei: I'm just sayin'.
Nina: Patience, Rei. We've got to be getting close to the first Crystal. We're out of the kiddie pool part of the map. I'm sure you'll acquire a Steal ability soon.
Rei: Hope you're right, princess.


Final Fantasy I, Episode III: "Well, 6hit."
With thanks to [community profile] moogle_university for inspiring this playthrough.

auronlu: (n00b)
...with borrowed Breath of Fire III characters adding personality to the generic Four Warriors of Light.

[Back to Part I]


Comparison of 1990 FFI on NES (first English edition of Final Fantasy) vs. the 20th Anniversary Edition ported to iOS, which is what I'm playing.

Here's the start of the original NES version of Final Fantasy (skip to 1:25 for beginning of real gameplay, 3:38 for throne room):

Here's the start of iOS Final Fantasy (skip to 1:49 for beginning of real gameplay, 1:55 for throne room):

Phoenix Downs and Ethers make it MUCH easier than the original, but I am old and Don't Care.

Final Fantasy I Playthrough, Episode II: Astos Makes Asses Of Us
Thanks to [community profile] moogle_university, which inspired this playthrough

auronlu: (Date With Cloud)
Final Fantasy I, Episode I: MAKE MY GODDAMN TEA
With thanks to [community profile] moogle_university for inspiring this playthrough

[[Above: the Item Shop and Items are symbolized by a teapot. I approve of a universe where all restoratives are supplied by tea infusions.]]

To help me deal with the cardboard cutout protagonists of the original FFI, I borrowed names/personalities from an old favorite, Breath of Fire III. (In that game, one could name only the main character. I'm afraid my naming habits were a bit Monty Pythonesque in those days). So apologies for the peanut gallery commentary from characters you probably don't know, but they're fairly self-explanatory:


Rei, Thief (M) -- Rogue with a heart of gold
Nina, White Mage (F) -- Bossy princess Leia
Momo, Black Mage (F) -- Mad scientist bookworm (rendered rather madder and more destructive in my take on her)
Spoo, Fighter (M) -- Shy prettyboy, ostensibly the main character, but he never speaks out loud (also a were-dragon in BoF, but nevermind)


The world lies shrouded in darkness...

"So, the Four Elements have gone plotz-- OMFG LOOKIT THE 8 BIT GRAPHICS! (Only not really; it's iPad retro trying to look 8bit). Prophecy, check, four Warriors of Light, check. Cue cute tinkly Uematsu MIDI music. This is gonna be great..."

After a long journey, four young travelers did at last appear...
...and in the hand of each was clutched a crystal.

Rei: Why the heck do I have a crystal? Can I sell it?
Nina: It's an FF game. We gots to have crystals.
Spoo: ...

Cut for spoilerz, LONG POST IS LONG and image spam... )
auronlu: (FF5)
[community profile] moogle_university is starting a ten month replay of Final Fantasy games up through X, at least, with commentary, liveblogging, and gamer geeking. I want to join them. I don't know if I'll have time, but it's too fun an opportunity to miss.

So, ganking their introductory post, here's my pre-playthrough answers for Final Fantasy I:

Have you ever played this game before? If so, what versions?
Nope. Utter tabula rasa. All I know is that there's probably going to be four Warriors of Light, crystals, and a buttload of level grinding and random encounters.

What version are you playing this time?
FInal Fantasy [I] for iPad. I've already forgotten which remake this is, but I'm guessing it's the Origins 20th annivesary version.

Do you have a fannish history with this game? If so, what?
Nada. See above.

What are your expectations for this playthrough? (Things you've heard from other fans you want to look for, things you want to prove/disprove, etc.)
I'm just hoping I'll have the patience to finish. I know the first game didn't have much story, and I prefer more story. But mindless level grinding can be fun. I expect some personal flashbacks to the original Might & Magic, which I adored, Rogue, and maybe even Temple of Apshai (I am dating myself, but that was my first real computer game RPG on my old Apple ][+, and I still remember the fake old English shopkeeper and the dorky ant men.)

Okay! So, time to head to the app store and buy it. Cue the retro gamer nostalgia!

EDIT: Click here to read the first session of my FFI playthrough...with silly commentary and screenshots!

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