I just got a chance to play another ~45 minutes or so in Final Fantasy VI, and wanted to give everyone an update on my thoughts. Judging from the comments when I last talked about the game, a lot of you are interested in (and currently are!) playing along with the game, too, and want to discuss what’s going on. Awesome!
So here are the ground rules when we here on vgconvos talk about a game we are playing and want to hear feedback from you all while still going into spoilers (which I guess we’ll just call “Video Game Club”). Note that these rules are subject to change, and probably will change as we figure out what the heck we’re doing.
(1) All in-depth talk / spoilers will be put behind a “read more” cut.
(2) The age of the game is irrelevant; we will respect spoilers in all games.
(3) Before the cut, we will describe the general area of where we are in the game, and where appropriate, the current play-time.
(4) You can’t hold us responsible for ruining games for you!
With that out of the way… I’m about 11 hours into Final Fantasy VI. If the town of “Vector” and a research facility don’t sound familiar to you yet, do not…
As I hinted at in episode four of the podcast, there have been a few hints of things here and there that lead me to believe I’m eventually going to get some sort of emotional attachment to some of the characters and impact from the overall game. Right now, though, these are all just hints… I simply don’t feel anything substantial yet.
One of those hints was Locke’s scene in Kohlingen in the basement of the building where “Rachel” is “sleeping” (dead?). It was certainly something good to toss into the mix, and helps develop his character slightly. I don’t really think it was enough, though. I’m hoping there will be more to this story later on, but at the same time, it doesn’t seem like it actually needs any more. Hints were left, and I should probably just read between the lines on my own and stop expecting it to spell it all out for me.
I have definitely been enjoying the Locke x Celes stuff going on, though. It’s been nice to have a little tension between characters while Terra is gone for a while. The blushing during the entire opera saga was definitely cute, and the awkward conversations and exclamations back and forth were wonderful, humorous touches to that tension.
This all culminated for me today with the scene in the Magitek Research Facility where Celes teleported(?) herself, Kefka, and the underlings away from the team (mine’s Locke / Edgar / Gau) and Cid. Her spoken desire to actually save Locke for once had just enough subtlety, but wasn’t too over-dramatic.
I’m also having a bit of a problem understanding the Esper system in the game. I can’t really tell which is equipped to which character and what it’s really doing for me. Am I just going to figure it out as the game goes on and I fart around with it more, or do you also feel that it’s not all that well integrated into the menu system?
So far I am definitely enjoying the game, and appreciate the layers that are being woven together as I move along in the story. I was hoping it would start moving a little faster, and I think it is. Then again, that just may be my inability to play too much of the game lately, which will continue up and through the wedding and honeymoon. I also spent about 30-60 minutes of play-time previous to Vector going up and down the continent just doing a little grinding, which takes you out of the story far too much. The flights coming up will give me plenty of time to sit in one place and play a ton of the game, though!
Hey Mike, don’t worry too much about your lack of attachment to the characters yet. There will be quite a few more moments that are gonna make them shine!
I too bought the game kind of late (ca. 2001) and had to get used to it but after a few days I completely fell in love with it and it’s now one of my favorites!
Sadly I haven’t been playing for a while, so I can’t help you out with the Esper system.
Keep playing. It’s really worth it!
(PS: Thanks to you guys I recently replayed Link’s Awakening. It’s still awesome!)
Yeah, I’m much farther, but this is where the game took off for me. I had heard so much about the opera scene and it absolutely delivered! That one scene makes me want to give Uematsu lots of money.
And the esper system reminds me of the FFVIII junction system and FFIX’s equipment system. Equipping an esper lets you learn stuff, in FFVI’s case, magic. My only real complaint with it is the fact that there isn’t much room for the characters to be truly unique. And the only characters worth using magic for are Terra and Celes. Everyone else *needs* a cure spell of some sort, but everything else is just there if you want it.
To conclude, this is currently my favorite Final Fantasy game in terms of story. It only goes up from where you’re at, Mike!
The save on the copy I bought on eBay was broken, so I had to return it. I have since then boughten a new copy, but it just came in earlier this week and I haven’t started it yet. Hopefully I’ll get to play it at some point over the weekend.