No more good feelings

It seems I did a rather poor job of selling the excellence of War of the Lion’s new localization in last night’s post, so I apologize for my failure of language in praising someone else’s excellence therein. I guess it’s just one of those things you have to experience for yourself in the gestalt; an isolated bit of text from here or there doesn’t quite convey the point. Plus, most of the best-written dialogue takes place during battles and works as a complement to the on-screen action. But anyway, it’s good. Really. Still, I am a little sad to report that your FF Tactics characters no longer get a good feeling when reporting completed tasks. Instead they talk about how the stars were with them from the outset or some such.

Sometimes, less dopey isn’t better.

And speaking of dopey — or at least nerdy — here’s more on Tactics.

My playthrough has me in chapter two now, building up to Lionel Castle. And to one of the game’s three big choking points (along with Dorter Slums in chapter one and Riovanes Castle in chapter three). Yes, it’s that awful battle that pits Ramza one-on-one with Gaffgarion (the Fell Knight formerly known as Gafgarion). I’m determined to have Ramza take him out alone this time without relying on helpful black magic from the other side of the gate. My current plan is to go in as a monk with Equip Heavy Armor and Adrenaline (formerly Speed Save), with Mettle (formerly Guts) as his secondary skill set. That’ll let me use Focus to crank up my strength, which will boost the effectiveness of the monk’s Chakra and make it possible for me to recover from several turns’ worth of Night Sword (or whatever it’s called now) each time I use Chakra. Meanwhile, liberal use of Pummel (formerly Repeating Fist) should wear down Gaffgarion’s HP pretty quickly — hopefully.

The one shortcoming with this plan is that I can’t figure out how the hell Pummel’s damage is determined. It may give me an estimate of inflicting, say, 60 HP, but the outcome is rarely in line with the estimate. In one battle I experienced yesterday, the same character’s Pummel delivered 10 HP on one turn and 112 the next. So… anyone know what’s up? Or care to offer a better strategy? I’m all ears.

18 thoughts on “No more good feelings

  1. Have Ramza learn ‘Weapon Break’ or ‘Steal.’ If the former, make him an archer to gimp Gaffgarion from the get-go and for the latter just put him in a class with good speed and like Ninja or Thief and boost his movement. Once you remove Gaffgarion’s sword he’s pretty much worthless and a non-threat.

    Alternatively if you took the Blood Sword from Gaffgarion when he was in your party and have a decent attack you can nullify ‘Night Sword’ with your own attack (since the Blood Sword restores your health equal to damage dealt.)

  2. I believe pummel is a bit like a mace, and deals random damage…

    I usually either lob summons through the gate or use a black choco to get a 2nd character back there with Ramza. My strategy for Riovanes Castle was usually to use charge +2 ot +3 (just enough to still go before Weirgraf moved) in order to increase my damage, could work here too. Alternately abuse auto-potion.

  3. Unless they changed up the damage formulas, Repeating Fist’s damage is calculated thusly: (1..9) * (PA + [PA / 2]), where (1…9) is a random number from 1 to 9. Truly, GameFAQs is a wondrous place.

    If I recall from my playthrough, my Ramza was already an accomplished Dragoon so I just kinda fell on him from above. Since I spent most of my time in the air he rarely got a chance to hit me and I picked him off pretty fast. It wasn’t as hilariously one-sided as my Wiegraf fight (it was literally over in three turns), but it was close.

  4. In my experience, Pummel isn’t worth it. The range advantage of Wave Fist makes it a better choice.

    One of my favorite memories of FFT was having a flying Samurai at that battle. Oh, a big wall? No problem. Wheeee!

  5. It’s been so long since I’ve done Lionel Castle I don’t even remember any more.

    Monk is certainly the one class that comes to mind for me in a one-on-one fight. Speed Save? Not so much. I never really made use of the skill however, so I can’t vouch for it. I normally would stick with auto-potion, myself.

    As an alternative to… er, Mettle, you could steal or break his weapon, rendering him harmless. Only problem there is success rates, but if you pull it off you pretty much have him beat.

  6. Man, this all makes me want to play FFT again. Do I really want to buy a PSP to do it, though?

  7. I tried the equipment-breaking strategy last time (now called “rending”) and it was a colossal flop. The Pummel approach also seems to be completely a matter of luck, but the important thing is that it doesn’t require additional training. The idea of having a Samurai with fly this early in the game speaks of hours of grinding, and I’ve a review to write.

  8. no more good feelings? they’ve stripped the soul out of the game.

    all these name changes are going to fuck me up, though i understand their rational.

  9. God, I can’t wait to see the fallout on GameFAQs about all the changes. When FF6A changed Doomgaze to Deathgaze, it prompted a series of three max-length posts by a guy who managed to reference Lord of the Rings, talk about his mom, and use the word “Dullsville” all together.

    I have to second the use of Earth and Wave Fist (or whatever they’re now called) for Monk. In early game, the Monk acts a lot like a poor man’s Orlandu, which is pretty rich all the same.

    Also, you’ll have to tell us if they nerfed the built-in Gameshark.

  10. I recently tried to beat gafgarion in that battle by making Ramza into a caster with equip shield and weapon guard then having him cast zombie on himself and nail gafgarion with spells. It didn’t really work too well since gafgarion switched from night sword (drain HP) to dark sword (drain MP) and finished with physical attacks. He took Ramza down to 0 HP but luckily zombie Ramza popped back up once his counter hit 0. I think self-zombie, concentrate, counter and a stick or staff might work better but I haven’t tried that yet.

  11. The easiest way to beat Gafgarion is to be a Monk with the Guts skillset as your secondary ability. Simply alternate between Yell-ing yourself to ten turns in a row and using Chakra when needed. I used this same basic technique during Ramza’s solo fight against what’s-his-fuck in Riovanes Castle and it worked like a charm, only this time I also used Accumulate until I could destroy him in two hits. This also worked great for the subsequent fight against him transformed, because your speed and attack power buffing carry over.

  12. Easiest way to deal with Riovanes Gate (or whatever it’s called now) is to set everyone’s movement skill to Teleport. You can then have Ramza join the rest of your team in slaughtering the grunts (Rubber Shoes nulls almost all of their offensive options), then have the entire gang warp over to beat up Gaffy.

    Alternatively you could build Ramza as a Wizard/Magic Attack Up/Summon Magic and probably kill Gaff in a single spell with neutral to better zodiac alignment, but I’d rather keep Gained JP-Up for that fight.

  13. I second the teleport strategy. The only drawback is if you get too greedy with how far you want to move, it makes you stay where you are. Also, you may consider it cheating. It comes in handy in any situation where your party is forcibly split up. A party of telporting summoners and monks is very effective.

  14. The slowdown during attacks makes me think that this game is actually emulating the PS1. I played FFT all the way through with my laptop and a gamepad (those $9 Saiteks have crosspads bettered only by the SNES) last year. I used the original disk, so no illegal stuff. I ran the game at 1280×800, an while the characters looked a bit pixelated, the environments looked pretty nice. It ran smoothly, but the summons and half the spells caused some pretty substantial slowdown. Since my laptop has onboard video, I thought it was a fill-rate issue. Now I am not so sure, since the PSP stretches the FFT image, and doesn’t upscale, right? It is too bad that they skimped on the technical side on a port of one of the best games ever, after going to the trouble of re-translating it.

    On the new translation: It reminds me of when Pioneer re-dubbed Akira a couple years ago. Though the new one is technically better written and acted, I find myself missing the goofy old one with the ninja turtle voices.

  15. I stole his sword. This pretty much left him offenseless for the rest of the battle. If I remember correctly, I spent the rest of the battle running in circles and having him fruitlessly chasing and trying to slap Ramza so that my party could kill all the underlings before I killed him.

  16. …So wait.

    They changed Repeating Fist to Pummel in the FFT remake…

    …and changed Pummel to Raging Fist in the FF6 remake?

  17. I played through FFT just a couple of days ago and I beat the crap out of both Gafgarion AND Wiegraf by making Ramza a lancer with auto potion.

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