Farewell my easytype

I’m still working my way through Final Fantasy IV — I’ve made it as far as the Tower of Zot — and I have come to a realization:

When you see a victory pose in this game, it is because you have bloody well earned it.

The original U.S. release of this game was a sort of brain-dead dumbing down of the Japanese version, but the DS remake is exactly the opposite: I would say its difficulty over the SFC original version is roughly equivalent to how much easier the U.S. Final Fantasy II was. In my first battle in Zot, the bad guys managed to kill off my fully rested and healed party in two moves. That’s not two rounds — two moves. And it wasn’t the first time I’ve stepped into a new territory only to be wiped out within seconds. I’m starting to wonder if this game has some sort of counter that tracks whether or not you’ve ever been to a given dungeon or map region, and if not promptly grinds you to paste.

Seriously, though, wow. I’ve been on a masochistic RPG kick this year with the likes of Shiren and the Etrian Odysseys, but FFIV is making me question my will to live.

25 thoughts on “Farewell my easytype

  1. I approve of this. I hope they can give FFVI the same ramp in difficulty when its inevitable remake comes.

  2. The only ramping up of difficulty in FF5 I can approve of is making the Omega Weapon a rare, random encounter in the Wind Shrine.

    Just to mess with your head.

  3. I’m not sure I approve of masochistic RPGs where the answer is inevitably ‘grind more’.

  4. You can’t really grind easily, because the differences in experience doled out in different areas is too great. Your best solution is to make a few tentative, halting steps into a new area, collect some of the new gear, and warp the hell out to recover and make another go at it. The second time around the new levels and new equipment greatly improve your survivability.

    Plus, many areas have a kick-you-in-the-pants-difficult enemy group that’ll trip you up if you stick around long enough.

  5. The only point of the game that I did any grinding was at the beginning when you get Rydia because she starts out beyond useless. I found the encounter rate to be low but just high enough that if you fight every battle you should be OK to move on.
    PRO TIP-Steel Golems drop Giant Gauntlets which raises your attack and defense through the roof. I picked up a bunch without meaning to and let me tell you, they make all the difference.

  6. Staring at that screen from my vantage point (roughly six inches from eye to monitor) gives the uncanny impression that Van Gogh had something to do with this game. Who’s to say? Could be that if I retreat a few meters, I might see a majestic unicorn jumping over a sail boat.

  7. That is a great hat for Edward…but no wonder you’re losing, he’s too busy staring at Cecil’s bottom. Ugh.

  8. Guys, Edward is the best support character in the first quarter of the game now. ‘Struth.

  9. Edward was one of the better characters in FFIVA, too. Who could’ve guessed that one day Edward would actually be useful in not one, but two forms of FFIV?

    Then again, who would have guessed that there would be more than one form of FFIV?

  10. I can’t really give you any advice except to keep grinding. And grinding. And watch out for bosses – a lot of them have some new and/or improved tricks up their sleeves.

    I think I was on level 88 or 90 when I beat the game, and [the last boss] was STILL tough enough to take me down the first time I fought him!

  11. Was FF V particularly hard? I just played the GBA version and I didn’t have too much trouble with it. Was the Super Famicom version different?

  12. Argh. On the one hand, I have plenty of desire for expanded FFIV back-story and mechanics. On the other hand, I have less than zero desire for being kicked in the pants by my RPGs. Conflict.

  13. There’s really not much back story added. There’s at least one significant cutscene added regarding Golbez, but very little else, unless I missed something. Still, it’s a decent remake, and it’s a cool for a new spin on an old classic. It IS difficult though – right in the first area, there are birds that used to do nothing, now they can regularly turn Kain/Cecil into stone if you’re not careful.

    FFV is relatively difficult compared to IV and VI (and most FFs thereafter), but if you’ve got a grasp on the job system, it’s not TOO bad.

  14. Gah, and FFIV was hard enough on the Super Famicom.

    I thought FFV was cake if you learned Gil Toss(samurai) and/or the 4x hit move(ranger).

  15. Played through the FF Chronicles version of FF4 recently and it very nearly lead to a broken controller. I’ll give this a shot but I don’t know if I can take a version of FF4 harder than that. Had to grind like 30 levels to BARELY scrape by Zeromus.

  16. Congrats, you’ve successfully sold me a copy of this game just by mentioning “extreme difficulty”. At least it’ll be more pleasant than some other crap I’ve seen lately.

  17. It’s true that I played FF V immediately after the Chronicles version of FF IV, maybe that set the bar high enough in terms of difficulty that I didn’t feel the bump. And now I’m playing The Answer in Persona 3 and I just started Etrian Odyssey – I guess all of a sudden I like hard RPGs? Doesn’t change the fact that I hated FF III on the DS.

  18. And here I thought it was going to be too easy, after watching one of those YouTube videos where the party takes out Proto Babil in five turns.

  19. As far as I am aware, success against Proto-Babil requires replaying the game several times and distributing “decant” abilities in strange, counter-intuitive ways. That video is roughly the equivalent of one-shotting Omega in FFV.

  20. t’s hard, all right, but I was able to avoid grinding entirely until I was at the last save point in the game. I never messed with any of the post-game stuff like Proto-Babil, though–on principle. Any New Game + where you don’t even get to keep your levels from the previous run is no New Game + at all.

  21. You know, given the instant split of opinions as to whether it’s good or bad whenever someone mentions a game is easy or hard, I really wonder why almost every game doesn’t just come with a set of difficulty switches running from “stupid easy” to “destroy you hard”. I mean sure, it’s more balancing work, but if you really don’t have the time just put in a well-balanced medium and crank the enemy power and endurance up or down; it’d keep most people happy, I imagine.

  22. That’s what cheat devices are for. I think anyone who sucks at video games should own one. If you’re not willing to grind grind grind they’re well worth the money.

Comments are closed.