Tag Archives: Final Fantasy Dimensions

Bioshock Infinite and the Statute of Limitations

This hasn’t been a great year for me playing videogames. Been so busy, so many things going on (not least of which is Comparative Geeks…) that I have a number of games that are incomplete. I have mentioned my thoughts on Diablo 3, which Holly and I should beat here at some point soon on the console (which I have also reviewed). I wanted to get Dragon Age 2 beaten, but still have not moved past the decision point I wrote about before (plus, how much will my save game matter now?). I still need to beat Final Fantasy XIII-2, though like Dragon Age 2, I have seen the end because Holly beat it. I am close to beating Final Fantasy Dimensions, but still haven’t. KotOR I have reached the point where it’s more open-ended where I go… twice. Holly beat Portal 2 recently, and I still need to finish the single player for that.

Really just a lot on the table.

So what game have I been playing? I have finally been getting back to Bioshock Infinite and working on beating it, and the further I get, the harder it is to put down! I am glad I did pick it back up, because it is phenomenal. There’s so much to say about it!

Winner of over 80 awards... so it says on my preorder copy of the game. Those are awards they got before the game came out.

Winner of over 80 awards… so it says on my preorder copy of the game. Those are awards they got before the game came out.

And yet, I don’t feel like I can. Every time I see someone start a conversation about Bioshock Infinite, they cut themselves off. They’ve been respectful of spoilers. And so I feel like I need to be too – because the game experience, unspoiled, is fantastic. So spoilers not ahead for Bioshock Infinite! Continue reading

Five Great Parts of Final Fantasy VIII

My theory is that most people’s favorite Final Fantasy game is the first one they played. In a lot of ways, this makes sense. Because the series is so self-referential, when you play a later game, the nostalgia you feel takes you back to that first Final Fantasy game you played.

My first Final Fantasy game was Final Fantasy VIII. It was also one of my first console games, back on the PlayStation. So for me, a lot of my expectations of other RPGs, other console games, and other Final Fantasy games, all go back to Final Fantasy VIII.

Final Fantasy VIII is my favorite Final Fantasy game, but that’s something of a rare statement, and the game seems to get a bit of flak from gamers – or is simply ignored. But there are a lot of elements to this game which I love, and so I thought I would write a post in defense of Final Fantasy VIII. Rather than try to defend the plot or game system – which are the parts easiest to be emotionally attached to or turned off by – and instead look at some of the broader items that were interesting in the game.

So here’s my list of five great parts to Final Fantasy VIII!

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An Ode to the Folks who make Online Walkthroughs and Wikis for Video Games

After some heavy posts this week, Holly and I thought we would end our week on a lighter note. Her list yesterday of books she has not read made me think of doing something similar, but nah, let’s mix it up.

Instead, I wanted to say some things about online strategy guides.

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The Hero’s Progress

The damsel in distress – part 2

Now I get to oversimplify some plots a little bit, and provide a broad stroke for you of what I am calling The Hero’s Progress. I am naming this after the famous Eighteenth Century works, The Pilgrim’s Progress, the Harlot’s Progress, and the Rake’s Progress. I lack the artistic skills to make images for you to match them, however. Maybe one of you can do so.

  1. Something precious is taken (our Damsel, perhaps)
  2. Show up to save it, and find out you are outclassed by the Villain or situation
  3. Find a teacher or Master to train and lead you
  4. Journey around and train up against increasingly difficult situations
  5. The Master is lost or dies
  6. The Hero surpasses the master, kicks butt, and saves the day

So that’s my take on parts that we seem to see a lot in the Hero’s progression, in leveling up, in game story telling, in super hero stories, in a lot of things. It’s certainly the sort of overall story we see with a Damsel in Distress.

Holly argued yesterday about how the Damsel in Distress is problematic because it seems to always be a weak woman and strong man having to save her. From a feminist standpoint, this is absolutely the case. You have a female character who, in the story outline I have here in the Hero’s Progress, shows up basically towards the beginning and then right towards the end.

I am going to take a storytelling approach to the problems here, however. In terms of motivation, we have several problematic aspects to this Hero’s Progress, and ways that they do not match reality – meaning that this story progression ends up making us feel like this is how things should be, without them actually being this way. Like Holly said, if a woman sits around waiting to be rescued, or a man feels he is worthless if he is not the one making more money, we have a problem. And it doesn’t match the reality in front of you then.

So, I am going to mainly deal with the first two aspects of the Hero’s Progress, because that is where there is overlap the most with Holly’s argument – and, as you see from my points, it makes the later stuff kind of moot. Continue reading

RPG Recommendation – Final Fantasy Dimensions

So, I have all these fancy, not eight-bit-style games I could be playing. Like Dragon Age II, in which I still have not moved on. Like Diablo 3, which I’ve at least considered moving on in. Like the co-op games we got recently. Like Final Fantasy XIII-2, which I have still not actually beaten myself.

But no, I’ve been obsessed with Final Fantasy Dimensions. Over 60 hours now. I’ve talked about it before, mentioning it as a new game I had picked up. I’ve enjoyed the gameplay, as an RPG player. I think they did a great job of fitting in with the platform they are on, with mobile devices, and matching their sales model with it. And the story and writing are great – with references to such a point that I wonder if it was originally written in English, and not Japanese.

FFD arrow to the knee

I saw this, grabbed my phone, and took a picture of it. While laughing hysterically. That was when I realized I was totally going to write this post. It was only later I thought of the fact I could take screenshots rather than using an iPhone to photograph an iPad…

So let’s look a bit more about what I love, so you can think about whether it’s worth a little time and money for you! Continue reading