Gaming’s greatest ongoing misnomer

I posted a rather over-long and generally aimless Final Fantasy Tactics A2 preview today which I think paints the picture of a good (but not perfect) game. Yes: It is a critical preview, the sort of thing the Internet likes to complain that “no one ever writes.”

Now to sit back and wait for someone to complain because previews aren’t supposed to be so biased and how dare we.

I started work on a Chocobo’s Dungeon review playthrough today, too. Between these and Crystal Chronicles and Final Fantasy IV, I’ve apparently become the site’s Associate Editor of Final Fantasy. (An append to my main job as Senior Editor of Metal Gear.) I can certainly think of worse fates! Still, I wouldn’t mind playing a first-person shooter again, someday. I vaguely remember liking those, I think.

Finally, I shall conclude my Final Fantasy IV review project with a haiku:

Challenge fierce on Earth
But once whaleborne in night’s sky?

11 thoughts on “Gaming’s greatest ongoing misnomer

  1. I had to grind quite a bit before I could navigate the moon in the GBA version of FFIV. I can only imagine how much worse it is with the enhanced difficulty.

    I wouldn’t start wishing for a first-person shooter while covering Final Fantasy. You might be enticed to play Dirge of Cerebus.

  2. Hell, I had a hard time on the moon in the SNES version of FFIV.
    Granted, I was a kid and it was my second RPG ever, but between that, the Lunar Cry in FFVIII, and the moon in Majora’s Mask, I’ve always held an intense distrust of the moon.

  3. Beats Executive Pokemon Master, I guess. Which I will probably be. Doh. Pretty good preview. It tends to echo the reviews of the Japanese version that I’ve read (decent gameplay, lousy story). That’s a shame, because the original’s was quite underrated. Oh well, life goes on.

  4. I loved the first Tactics and played through it several times which is something I rarely have the patience to do. I couldn’t even bring myself to get halfway through FFTA. I didn’t mind the judges much (most of the time they didn’t effect me anyway) but the whole thing of learning abilities through the equipment is what broke me. It was just so artificial and obnoxious and took away what made the original fun to me. Which was the customization and the depth of combat abilities.

    I wonder if the story is worth trying to force another playthrough to the part where you say in your review that it turns somber.

  5. How is Chocobo’s Dungeon so far? Any first impressions?

    I’ll still buy it, regardless, though. The pains of Uncontrollable Fanboyism. I didn’t have high hopes for it originally, but thinking back, that Chocobo Tales game for DS was actually quite charming. Here’s hoping they at least keep that same spirit.

  6. My bump in the road for Final Fantasy Tactics Advance was when I removed an item from my inventory because I was overstocked. Normally, such a thing is not a big deal. I later found out from a FAQ that I could not advance to the extra missions after I completed the game. The reason? That item I chucked was one of five I needed for a mission and the mission to get more of those items would not reoccur. I didn’t have the heart to go back through the whole game just to get to the extra missions.

    The game did get me interested in tactical RPGs though, which is certainly a feather in its cap.

    P.S.- It looks like they recycled most of the sprites and some of the art. At the least the interface looks a little shinier.

  7. Yeah, I hope the interface is cleaned up – the FFTA’s was atrocious. Aside from the risky mission items thing, the inventory system was particularly frustrating.

  8. Yeah, the item requirements were obtuse and unintuitive. I locked myself out of a Red Mage Viera and her specialized equipment by tossing some cup or another.

    I liked the preview. While I’m still interested in the game, I’m aware of its potential shortcomings now, and I didn’t see any bias anywhere. AWhat I find amusing, in tactical terms, is the fact that you start with zero MP and it steadily fills up automatically. While FF12 works on roughly the same principle of “regenerating MP,” the concept, as it applies to FFTA2, sounds like it’s cribbing a page from Level-5.

    The “loot” system for crafting equipment, which you need to learn Abilities which you need to unlock Jobs, is a massive headache in the making. The Mission Items from FFTA were obtuse enough, thanks, and it was also bad enough that you’d only get the truly useful equipment (like Steal Weapon) near the endgame. Do you at least get an ingredient list or something to know what you can create, and what you need? Or do you mix stuff blind to see what you come up with?

  9. The MP filling up from 0 thing is an old Tactics Ogre thing, at least from the GBA version of that series.

  10. Sometimes I feel like the only person that really enjoyed FFTA. Not that it was as good as the original.

  11. Well, if you ever want to play some Halo *waves*.
    Enjoyed the preview, looking forward to the game, but worried because I’ve only played the first Tactics for about 2 hours {friend’s gba copy}, whether it’ll be too difficult for me..

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