lunedì 27 aprile 2009

Games that Deserve Sequels 4: Final fantasy Tactics

[my eternal frustration, and yet another square title]

I've been bitching about this subject for years, to the annoyance of my close friends. In fact its probably the reason behind this blog. Final fantasy tactics is a srpg for the psx that is nothing like its successors ffta and ffta2 for the gba and ds respectively fyi.
the original fft told a dark story of class struggle, the ties of family, honor, and deceptiveness of religious belief. Final fatasy tactics advanced noticeably started off with a snowball fight outside of an elementary school, see the difference?
let me say that final fantasy tactics was not perfect, but the team that made ogre battle made fft as good as strategy rpgs would ever get before Nippon Ichi Software came around. FFT also notably invented the squaresoft universe of Ivalice, where Vagrant Story, ffta, ffxii, and ffta2 also took place (although whether or not a continuity exists is a matter of heated nerd debates).
They did refurbish fft for the psp, which i never played. They added the main character from ffta2 (which debuted months afterward) and balthier from ffxii. I was satisfied with cloud (ff7 also came out after the original fft, maybe they thought of this as some kind of trend). To the variety of class selection they added Onion Knight and Dark knight (the dark knight was available in the original only as a gameshark exploit).
These are the main issues i have with Final fantasy tactics' further iterations:
-Child geared themes (which made the battles seem less than epic, hard to be avoided on the ds)
-the addition of extra races, the numou, bangaa, and other nonsense. i don't have a problem with the races specifically, but the fact that they created a supremely shit-tastic job system that was uselessly convoluted and created jobs that were insignificantly different from one of a different race's job library made the process of creating a diverse and effective army an annoying one.
-the loss of 3d environments, no movable camera
-cant ride(except for moogle chocobo knights)/raise chocobos, or have monster party members
-wtf happened to the chemist?
-the law system is iffy, it makes the battles interesting sometimes, sometimes just irritating, many times has no effect on how i play, and other times just pisses me off because it doesn't effect the enemy for some reason.

These are mostly problems with the first ffta, the second one actually had some features that i liked:
-great music (the DS has amazing sound quality)
-no more random battles (also a feature of ffta)
-A constant and extremely large collection of side quests
-the auction system
-material collection/item creation (surprisingly addictive)
-saving during battles

for me, a good sequel would have to consider these decent additions by ffta/2, a more substantial and satisfying job system, and a return to the dark medieval atmosphere of the original, with murder, kidnapping, and zodiac demons in tow. Maybe the ivalice alliance could take this chance to solidify the ivalice universe's story (like why it turned into a never-ending story type book for some kid to find, or how all of these lizard people popped up)

feels great to get that out.

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