We return to our Marathon Look-Back for the PSX era and its continuations with our Top and Bottom 5 Moments. While a lot of these “moments” can be intentional parts of the stories or gameplay of their respective games, this is ultimately about the experience of playing, watching, or (in the case of Before Crisis) even reading about these products, which means they could also be things that happened organically as a result of the game, or in one case, even a faulty walkthrough! Have a look!(more…)
Well, it’s that time again: time to look back at a long period of gaming spanning several years in both development and playtime. The last time we did this, we were covering the NES, SNES and GB eras, plus their direct continuations. The games we’ll be covering this time are all the PSX-era RPGs and their continuations, basically everything we played after FFVI and up to the present day, including six Final Fantasy games (seven if you count Before Crisis), three Persona games, two Final Fantasy movies, and one Final Fantasy TV show. This is proximate to our last look-back in terms of products (our last Look-Back covered twelve Final Fantasy games, one OVA, and the undersized FFII Soul of Rebirth and FFIV Interlude), but represents way more blog posts overall. The Directory was really getting unwieldy. Admittedly, as Kyle comments in one of his reviews, all these spinoffs and sequels are going to make this something of a FFVII-centric post, but it’s how it’s gotta be.(more…)
So, during my most recent FFVIII post, I was discussing my least favourite dungeon in the entire Final Fantasy Marathon, D-District Prison. For point of reference, I also threw some shade on my previous least-favourite dungeon, the Ronka Ruins from FFV. But as I added in an edit after the fact, I actually replayed FFV not long after FFVIII, and realized I didn’t dislike the Ronka Ruins as much as I remembered. If you want to see my comments on those two dungeons, check out that post. In this post, I’m going to follow up those thoughts by trying to work out my new #2 least-favourite dungeon!
Now, some quick standards. Because not every FF game has “dungeons,” we’re going to be weighing whatever each game considers to be a distinct “unit of play.” That means dungeons in the traditional RPGs, any chapter/stage in the stage-based games, and any battle or fixed series of battles in FFT (spoiler: there are no FFT battles on this list, not even the duel with Wiegraf. But I thought it would be nice to have that rule in case we revisit this list after playing FFTA!). Also, this is only for games we’ve covered in the Final Fantasy Marathon at the time of writing (in the middle of FFVIII), and for Final Fantasy alone. If I had allowed Persona 1 dungeons, there’d be nothing else on the fucking list, so I am happy to dismiss it. No TV episodes or films either, both because they’re so different and because, like Persona 1, LotC and FFU would just dominate the list. With that out of the way, let’s take the the dungeons in Marathon order.(more…)
This time around, it’s not about the full games – it’s about specific moments, and our Top 5 Worst and Top 5 Best Moments of the Marathon. These can be moments built into the game or things that happened to Kyle and I while we were playing, a great blend of the personal and the well-designed. Enjoy!(more…)
Since we wrapped up the FFVI Journal last week, we decided to take the opportunity to do a celebration here at Marathon Recaps and look back over the past two eras of Final Fantasy: the 8-bit and 16-bit eras. And it won’t just be me because, for the first time you’ll be hearing Kyle’s thoughts directly from the source! With many of these games, it’s been years since we last played them, and we wondered if a good look back might have changed out opinions. So here’s the plan: this week, Kyle and I will alternate talking about each game, giving some time-aged insight into each. Next week, we’ll be back with two Top 5 lists each: our Top 5 Worst and Top 5 Best Moments in the Marathon! Be sure to be back for that!(more…)
One thing Kyle and I are constantly aware of in regards to the Marathon is that time is always creeping up on us. The Marathon’s chronological nature means that one day, we’ll catch up to the next game on the list only to discover that Something Has Gone Wrong. Something that would have worked on release no longer works today. Final Fantasy III DS lost its MogNet features to the Nintendo DS WiFi shutdown. Bravely Default’s unique demo allows only 30 plays a system. And if our shitty PSP TV Out cables drop dead or transform into snakes to physically throttle us, it would only be in line with their previous behaviour. But nothing is more vulnerable than server-driven smartphone games. Not only is every online server doomed to die before too long a life, but smartphone games often exist on no other platform. If Kyle and I were to rely on a Steam copy of Lightning Returns, we would still be able to turn to a hard copy if Lightning Returns were removed from Steam. But by the time Kyle and I get to Final Fantasy Dimensions’ slot in our playlist, just after the FFType-0, the game may no longer exist!
As a result, I made a point to get to all of the “vulnerable” games ahead of time, to get down my thoughts into the original Marathon journal blog as soon as possible. We’ve already lost a few games entirely! There was Tetra Master online, Ivalice-universe Flash game Dive II Hunt, and also Final Fantasy Airborne Brigade. Thankfully, I got to play Airborne Brigade just a few months before shutdown.(more…)