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Saturday, February 15, 2014

More on Final Fantasy X-2 HD (Part Three)

I really am an extremely patient game player. Very few would have bought a game in another language and tried to play it through using various walkthroughs (without any patches). It is, trust me, an elaborate process. But I've now done it with Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core (okay, I played it blind with this one), Final Fantasy Type-0 and, now, Final Fantasy X-2 the remark. These Japanese games just look so good to be missed! 

So I've now reached the fifth and final chapter of FF X-2 and I AM enjoying it a lot. As said before, I love the job system ... the thing is cos it's in Japanese I just have to memorise the positions of useful attacks. Admittedly, some fun is lost there, somewhere, but the whole (turn-based) experience is still sufficiently engaging to keep me interested. And touch wood, I think I've managed to do all the necessary steps (meet all the necessary requirements) to get my hands on the "ultimate" weapons/accessories. 

Yuna as Festival goer
I  have so far found accs like Ribbon and Minerva's Plate (yumm!) In fact, I'm obsessed with getting the unique stuff in games (god, the time and effort I spent on Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together!). But this is only a small part of the game. I think I'm only scratching the surface of the overall gameplay. Playing the story, I'm simply trying to get all necessary weapons (in the form of "dresspheres", "garment grinds" and accs in this game) before I attempt the hard bosses: the Mega Tonberry is just indestructible! So, the completion of the storyline is mere one part of this vast game; after that (perhaps in New Game +) I will be using all the stuff I unlocked to, well, strategically apply them in the more challenging battles (which is the part I think I will enjoy the most). To be honest, I am not getting much out of the storyline anyway cos I have no idea what the characters are saying (in Japanese) ... using the various walkthroughs, I'm just following other players and experiencing what they experienced -- which is fine, at least I know I'm not missing the missables(!) Besides, FF X-2 is NOT known for its fantastic story (unlike, Final Fantasy IV, which I have - in English - but haven't completed yet ... it is far more difficult and unforgiving game than FF X-2!!) 

I found below from "Brain Weasel" ( and I totally agree with him/her: "Is the game good? I didn't really think so the first time I completed the game, one eye on the screen, a 100% completion FAQ up on my laptop, a LEGO sculpture holding controller buttons down for me while my AP slowly earned themselves. But while I had some unflattering things to say about the game in the course of this LP, I also discovered that I was playing it wrong. I'm starting to realize that this question is as dependent on the player as it is on the game design. Having a secret ending with bullshit completion requirements was a poor choice on the developer's side, but insisting on seeing that ending was a choice I made and stuck with even though I wasn't having any fun doing it. I lost sight of the journey while focused on the destination.

"Suppose I had played through the game without a FAQ. It's a weird concept for a modern RPG, but it's how games used to be played, right? I probably would have seen the standard ending, and deemed it to be a perfectly reasonable and serviceable one. After a while, I probably would have picked the game up again and done some more exploring, and eventually went to a guide for the last few things I never would have found on my own. That, I think, I would have called a good game experience. But it's not what I thought to do, and so the game and I were a poor match. But I also don't have the twitch gaming reflexes to play, say, Painkiller, and it's wouldn't be fair to call it a bad game for that reason. Badness is objective, but goodness is subjective, I guess is what I'm getting at. And Final Fantasy X-2 is nothing if not subjective."

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