GameSpite 11.2: Snuggling the classics

Final Fantasy V
In keeping with this month’s theme of love and thanksgiving, I’ve finally wrapped up the Final Fantasy V retrospective I’ve been telling the other contributors I’d be writing since…uh, well, basically all year long. Love takes time, guys, and I do love this game. There may be objectively better Final Fantasies, but none so fun to play through as V. Roll on DS remake.
Sonic the Hedgehog CD
Sonic CD has enjoyed a mixed reputation over the years. For the longest time, it was regarded as the holy grail of the series, largely because no one had played it, because what sane person owned a CD? Then it became available on collections and people were down on it. Now it seems to be developing a sort of cachet again. The lesson here: nerds are a bunch of fickle, fickle people.

25 thoughts on “GameSpite 11.2: Snuggling the classics

  1. All that talk about FFV being a tongue-in-cheek parody of FFIV and no mention of Ex-Death’s greatest moment: when he had a Dragon Ball Z-esque battle with a turtle?

  2. Parish, I noticed that one of your screen shots shows the new jobs for the GBA version. I felt that they (well, the first three, anyway) broke the main game if you chose to get them, but were absolutely necessary for some of the post-game content. Your thoughts?

  3. I think FFV is my favorite, and it’s nice knowing that others have a soft spot for it too. Particularly ones that play more games than me!

    As one of the rare people who only spent serious time with FFVI after multiple playthroughs of FFV, it really surprised me how much VI give you flexibility and variety by way of the different characters, gear, and Espers. Not as much as FFV perhaps, but I never felt the game wasn’t giving me enough options.

    I still like FFV better though, for the lush greens, subtly rich musical arrangements, bizarre story twists, and “class parties”.

  4. I can’t help but feel that FFV suffers from having come to us in the states after FF Tactics, which does everything FFV wants to do, but better. Once i topped out all the classes in FFV, it just lost its luster, and i had no real impetus to keep going.

  5. Yeah, actually, that’s not a flaw in the game, you know? Any game stops being fun if you break it by playing it obsessively, and a decade after it was released at that. “I didn’t think Mario 3 was very good because once I had maxed out my lives by jumping on Goombas in 1-3 for five hours straight it seemed pretty boring.”

  6. I liked the write up on FFV, but I’ve just never been able to get into the game. I have it both for PSX and GBA, but only got ten or so hours into it each time. While I like the class system, I find the characters painful and the world shallow. While VI doesn’t give me the same awesome classes, there is enough variety along with good characters and a deep world that I keep coming back to that one.

    I really enjoyed Sonic CD, not as much as Sonic 2 or 3, but still quite a bit. I’m not much for speed runs, but the option was nice to have.

  7. i’m with nicholai.

    it’s a game i fully see why people love it so, but i simply cannot make it more than halfway through without losing interest. i really do want to like it since the job system is truly phenomenal, and fun.

    also, shivam, why would you ever max all the classes? sure, flexibility is nice, but it’s kind of like going for all of the ultimate weapons in Final Fantasy X. by the time you get them all, your party is typically so maxed out that any challenge those weapons would alleviate is long gone.

  8. I maxed all but a handful of the jobs in the GBA version of FFV just because I could sit there and grind while watching TV or something. Someday I should go back and finish that extra content…

  9. When I first played the fan translation of FFV, I thought, eh. I played all the way through, even beating Omega and Shinryu, but it didn’t particularly wow me at any point. I came to appreciate it more when I played through the GBA version, but I’m still fairly lukewarm on it. I just don’t find the class system all that deep or interesting, and when you combine that with an uninteresting story, a forgettable world (or rather THREE forgettable worlds!…yay?), and only one out of five characters (Galuf) being at all interesting or appealing…well, I can’t get too excited. Maybe if I’d had a chance to play it when it first came out I would love it to death today. But I’m skeptical.

  10. Sadly, Final Fantasy V stands with III stands as the only two mainline FF games I haven’t finished (well, XII too, but I haven’t played XII). The furthest I’ve gotten has been the second world. I liked it well enough, but I just sort of drifted away.

    I will return though! Maybe when I get home, I’ll buy the GBA version…

  11. Sonic CD is probably my second favorite of the old Sonic games, after S3+K. As was pointed out in the articles, there’s wonderful stage design and even the bosses are pretty creative. The level where you do nothing but race Metal Sonic is easily the highlight of the entire game.

  12. why would i max all the classes? because i hate more than anything being potentially in a situation where i don’t have the answers. And rather than try to figure out which character to focus on what, if i have bartz as a mage, i can have the little girl as a fighter, until bartz maxes out. and then, like a farmer, i rotate my crops.

  13. Sonic CD is the only Sonic game I ever bothered to speedrun and that’s definitely because it’s the only Sonic game that bothers recording your times (and because it’s how you unlock things). For a series with such a big focus on speed it feels like a huge design oversight that none of the other games at the time did this.

  14. Shivam, FFV doesn’t put you into a series of non-escapable boss battles like FFT does. And like Parish said, as long as you don’t skip entire sections of the game and leave characters as one job well after they’ve maxed it, you are almost certain to have a tool in your arsenal for nearly any situation. The fork tower? Guess what – you know exactly what you’re getting into the moment you walk in the door. It’s not a trap sprung on you after climbing to the top. If you’re not prepared, leave, get your magic or phys up, and go back.

    tl;dr: you did it wrong.

  15. I think another way FFV subverted FFIV was that the lead character, Butz (or Bartz, or whatever), is a bit of a putz sometimes. Not to mention that Krile, a little girl no less, is a complete Mary Sue.

    And since it bears repeating, the Samurai’s Iainuki is made of win.

  16. I’ve never quite been able to convince myself that FFV is the best Final Fantasy, but I think it’s easily the most fun. The job system has just the right mix of open customization and careful boundaries to make it really satisfying to play with your party makeup, I think. Say, does anyone know how FFX-2 compares? I’ve been itching for a take on the job system that I haven’t already played a bunch of times, and it seems like the best candidate.

  17. “Hey, that’s Square Enix for you: two steps forward, one step back, followed by a swift knife right to the heart of its biggest fans.”

    It’s depressing how true this is, especially if you play FFXI. Well, if you played XI in 2005-2006. Now aday’s Square’s policy is less ‘Ignore them gaijin’ and more ‘Oh we like subscriptions we’ll listen now’.

  18. Kevin: By all means, play FFX-2. It’s actually a pretty good game that offers a lot of freedom and some pretty entertaining sequences. The job system is especially open, with all sorts of abilities and special equipment to tinker around with.

  19. I love FFX-2 specifically for its job system. Some of the costumes are a little.. iffy.. but the mechanics are absolutely solid.

  20. Final Fantasy fanfiction is one thing — but a cookbook on all the delicious ways to prepare a chocobo is something entirely more mouthwatering.

  21. You can’t beat the job system in FFV or FFT. I gripe about just about every RPG that doesn’t have them.

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