Backlog Report – March & April 2022

Is it over?

Hello all. I wasn’t planning on skipping a month from the blog, but April proved to be more of a beast than I was anticipating. Up until the final week, I didn’t have a day to myself where something wasn’t on my calendar of responsibilities and obligations. I haven’t been able to play much, but I have been able to write some things down here and there. My plan is to go over all the ramblings that I wrote and flesh them out to proper post. Hopefully those won’t take long to edit and I can start trying to post more regularly again.

One thing that is going to help me with that is to finally tackle some of the issues that I’ve been having. They are not easy to talk about since I’m still trying to figure it out as well. Long story short, I will be taking sessions soon to start tackling some of the anxiety and depression that I have. If you’ve noticed that I haven’t said anything about my 50/50 challenge lately, this is one of the reasons. One of my goals was to lose fifty pounds by August, but instead of losing weight I’ve been gaining even more. There is definitely a mental component to it all, so this is my first step to finally do something about it. If all goes well, I may still have time to reach my goal before the deadline. The “finishing games” component will definitely not get done due to the black hole that is Elden Ring.

In other news, I’ve started the painstaking task of taking inventory of all of my consoles and video game reference books. I’ve been meaning to do my consoles for a while ever since my brother got robbed last year. I had never thought about recording all of my other stuff, but having something like that happen makes you think twice about having a record of it all (plus it is just nice to have). I should have started my reference book list a long time ago before my collection exploded, but there is a certain joy of having a lot of stuff to catalog at once (I am a nerd for this kind of stuff so just leave me alone). My goal one day would be to get rid of the old excel sheets and have an online catalog where I could keep track of things a bit better. I recently discovered this one mobile app called Gameye and it has been great to use so far. The inclusion of a barcode scanner makes inventorying so much easier. It is hit and miss since it does go off what is stored in its database which is growing. What makes me like it even more is that I can include my own notes as well as a tracker if I’ve finished a game or how much I have finished it. The icing on the cake however is that you are able to export your data to a txt file or a .cvs file. The exports can be hit or miss since instead of leaving empty variables empty, it fills it with random text just to keep each cell full. Overall I am impressed with it. The designer is still constantly updating the app with the hopes one day launching a website where users can create an account and access their account on multiple devices. Not a paid ad, but I like it so far and wanted to spread the word.

Another fun thing that happened just last week was my friend Ben’s wedding. He is a silent third member of my group of friends who’s only gaming device was a Xbox 360. So to surprise him on his wedding, me and my other friend got him a PS4 to celebrate the occasion. He really liked playing Soul Calibur with us, so I’m practicing my character creation skills again to create even more questionable characters (maybe a sequel to one of my old post). I’m just happy that we get to include him in some of our gaming sessions online versus on occasion when we meet up. One of these days we will build him a PC.


Finished This Month

Xenoblade Chronicles 2

The big game that I finished this last month. I am surprised like all of you that it only took me 3 weeks to finish this game. Miracles can happen if you believe hard enough. Overall, I enjoyed the game minus the beginning parts. I won’t say that this was better than the first game, because that would be a lie and I don’t want to tell a lie. I will say that I wish I had the motivation to play this a second time via New Game+ and explore different routes with team composition that I didn’t think of. If you want to know my full thoughts on the game (plus a little lesson on tone), you can read the post I made about it a few weeks ago.

Trivia Pursuit Live! 2

Um. I don’t have much for this one. Kat and I enjoy playing the first Trivia Pursuit Live!, so getting a new one with updated questions and modes seemed like a good idea. While I do like having updated questions, I don’t particularly like this version of Trivia Pursuit. It somehow looks worse than the first game, and in some areas it feels cheaper. Outside of a new Twitch mode, this is the same game with new questions. There are new cosmetic options for your avatar and their primary color is not tied to your title anymore. Other than that, it doesn’t impress me. I won the first game we played so I count that as a win for finishing the game. On a side note, I am terrible at geography (I couldn’t tell you where to find anything on a globe…).

Yu-Gi-Oh! Master Duel

After thinking on it for a while, I think I am going to put this game in the finish pile. Originally I wanted to reach the highest ranking before calling it quits, but I’ve lost the motivation to do that. There’s just so much going on in the game now and I feel like I need to create specific decks to compete with the current meta. It’s not my favorite way to play the game, but I can appreciate how engaging it can be. I just hate that I keep running into the same decks and the lack of original playstyles that I’ve come across. It could just be the matches I get into, but it gets repetitive after a while. I will still pick this up and play it from time to time, but I have no interest in becoming the King of Games in this game.

Kirby and the Forgotten Land

Coming in at the end of the month is Kirby and the Forgotten Land. I don’t normally gravitate to Kirby games, but if one looks fun then I will give it a go. The game felt like HAL Labs looked at Super Mario Odyssey and said they could do the same thing with Kirby. It definitely has that Switch era, Nintendo first-party atmosphere to it where it is a familiar game with a fresh take to it. Everyone thought that this was going to be an open-world Kirby game like Mario and Zelda on the Switch, but it is a cozy linear-ish 3D Kirby game. I personally like that direction since it is what make Kirby games work in my opinion. Besides, if HAL Labs is going to make a open-world 3D Kirby game, it better be Kirby Air Ride 2. Overall, this was a fun and pleasant game to play as a secondary to Elden Ring.


New Additions

*This is a combination of games I got in both March and April

Beetle Adventure Racing

So why in the year 2022 did I purchase a game about racing Volkswagen Beetles? The one and only reason I can think of is nostalgia is one hell of a drug. This was a game that me and my older brother would frequently rent from our local video store from some strange reason. I remember us really liking this game for the arcade racing feeling that the game has. When I mentioned to my brother that I had found a copy, his face lit up and he got excited. That reaction must mean we had a good time playing it. Once I’m done being lazy about hooking up the N64, I will let those memories come rushing towards me like a 1998 Volkswagen Beetle with 2-wheel driving and other features like anti-theft alarm, four beverage holders, and a bud base on the dash (whatever that means).

F-Zero X

Speaking of racing games, F-Zero X was recently added to the Nintendo Switch Online Service. That’s neat, but I don’t have the updated version of NSO. I used my money wisely to buy a rather cheap copy for the N64. I know I’m missing out on online multiplayer with the NSO version, but knowing how the system handles online I think I’m good. I remember playing this game a lot at one of my cousin’s house. The fast pace action was a change of pace from Mario Kart. As I write this, I can vividly smell his house and the weird musk of three boys sharing one room. Nostalgia is a weird drug…

Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney – Spirit of Justice

To be honest, I completely forgot that I bought this game in March. If you forgot, the 3DS eshop is closing this year, so now is the time to purchase any last minute games (and DLC) off of it. Something that makes buying these games easier are all of the sales that are happening right now. Capcom and Atlus have been selling some of their best games on the 3DS for less than $10, so now is the best time to pick these games up before the physical versions skyrocket in price. What makes the Phoenix Wright games special on the 3DS is the fact that they are only available in digital format. So once purchasing has been disabled on the eShop, those games will be unavailable forever (until they get ported to current devices). Why pay for a premium now when when I could buy it now for only $5?

Star Fox Zero / Star Fox Guard

I knew I would have to get this game sooner or later. With the shop shutting down soon, now would be the best time before prices start to inflate. I don’t this game would have had a problem though, since I bought this at a second hand shop brand new (unopened) for only $16 USD. They even had it behind the counter with all the other expensive games. If that is a testament to how bad this game was received, then I don’t know what will. Star Fox 64 is one of my favorite games of all time, and I know Zero is just a glorified remake of that game. I consider myself a patient gamer, so getting used to the game’s unique controls will grow on me eventually (hopefully). Star Fox Guard was a nice extra bonus and from what I can tell is the better game out of the two. I hate bad mouthing games that I have not played yet, but with the reputation that this game has, it has clouded my judgement a bit.

Trivia Pursuit Live! 2

I already talked about this game. Go back up four paragraphs in case you somehow skipped it. Or maybe you skipped it initially because you did not care about the game or what I finished this month. That’s okay. We all have things that we like to read in posts like this and ignore certain sections. I am not one to judge since I like to skim through some articles that I read. Read what makes you happy and don’t feel obligated to reading every single word in this post. …Okay where was I? I seem to have lose what direction I was going with this bit…

Kirby and the Forgotten Land

It’s Kirby again. I’ll talk more about it when I write a Backlog Tale on it.

Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards

This is my favorite Kirby game that I’ve never owned. Back in the glory days when you could rent games, my brother and I would always rent this game and play through it before we had to return it. To me, this has a lot of replay value thanks to being able to mix and match copy abilities. Mix fire and bombs and now Kirby is a firecracker! You thought Kirby becoming a vending machine was original in Forgotten Land? Wrong! He was doing that before in Kirby 64! I can’t wait to find the time to go through this game and get the true ending that I never got since I was a dumb kid.

Radiant Historia: Perfect Chronology

I played and finished the original Radiant Historia on the original DS. I thought the game was fun on its own, but could have used its time travel mechanic a little bit better. I originally wasn’t interested in the 3DS remake, but for around $10 I am more than willing to revisit this remake.

Shin Megami Tensei: Devil Survivor 2 Record Breaker

I completely forgot that I bought this along with Radiant Historia. Another game where I have played the original, only that I completely screwed myself towards the end and never went back to finish it. I mostly bought this to complete the collection of having all of the Shin Megami Tensei games for the 3DS. Once I “borrow” my brother’s copy of Soul Hackers, I will have them all.

Castlevania 64

This month should have been called the month of getting all the games I used to rent as a kid. Castlevania 64 earns the reward of the game I rented once or twice and never got far into it (since I didn’t have a controller pack to save). There was definitely a learning curve that my child brain could not understand, but that didn’t stop me from trying it. I also played the other Castlevania game for the N64, but obtaining a copy of that game is way out of my budget right now. I have played the first stage in this game, and I feel compelled to stream this one day…

Dark Cloud

Last weekend I went out of town to be a part of a friend’s wedding. Before I left the area, I found a really cool game store that was packed with games, collectables, arcade cabinets, and tables for card games. I talked with some of the guys who ran it, and I had a good time talking about games. The owner (I think) hooked me up with a copy of the Final Fantasy V Advance strategy guide that normally is sold for up towards $50 for only $30. If I lived in the area, I would probably frequent this store on a biweekly basis.

Oh yeah. As a souvenir I bought a copy of Dark Cloud since Kat owns the second game, but not the first. It was also my way of supporting their business for being real cool guys.

Snowboard Kids 2

The final game in my nostalgia filled ride. Snowboard Kids 2 is one of the best N64 games that not many people played. If we ever saw this game available to rent from the store, we would always get it. It is that good. If this game ever appears on the Nintendo Switch Online service, I will upgrade immediately and play this online with my friends. This game is just a snowboard game similar to Mario Kart, but this is way better in my opinion. Seeing how this was developed by Atlus, that may also be an indicator of why I like it. I will definitely write about this game soon, but for now I need to pay off the small loan that it took to buy this game.


Currently Playing

Elden Ring continues to consume my life. I’m over 100 hours in and getting close to the end. I have just been taking my time having a panic attack if something new is going to kill me or not (more than likely I panic for no reason). With my friend’s help and guidance, I have created a pretty good build for myself. I hope I can finish this game soon, but a part of me doesn’t want the adventure to end just yet. I know I can carry everything over into New Game Plus, but I’m the type of person who tries to get the most done in a single go (especially if I really like the game). At the time of writing this, I have bested Malenia and Rykard and have claimed their Great Runes. Only Shardbearer Mohg is left and then I can cross the Shardbearers off my list. In the main story, I have reached Lyndell and have defeated the skin quintuplets. Before I defeat the “final” boss, I want to get some last minute sight seeing done. If I stay this diligent, I should have the game done next month. After that, I can no longer use it as an excuse for not finishing other games.

As much as I am enjoying Elden Ring, I do need to focus on games that I can finish this decade. I am somewhere in the middle of Final Fantasy V. If I’m being honest, it is kinda hard for me to stay motivated with it. If I had one big complaint with the game currently is that it is easy to get lost. I’m bringing up my bad luck with geography for the third time again, but the game likes to tell you where to go, but not how to get there. I’ve had to use a guide multiple times in order for me to figure out the next area I was supposed to go to, and that is something I don’t really like doing on a first playthrough. It could be a me issue, but when I send time in a cave convincing myself that there is a secret path somewhere when there isn’t, then I blame the game for not communicating that well. Everything else is fine. The job system makes me wish I was playing Bravely Default instead.

Even though I finished Kirby and the Forgotten Land, there are still Waddle Dee for me to save and the post game to do. I figured that it is a short and fun game that I should go the extra step to 100% complete the game. It’s not going to be my top priority, but a good palate cleanser if I need something cozy to play.

Blog Plans for This Month

Small goal will be to publish at least one of the things that I’ve been working on. A bigger accomplishment will be getting both things I have been working on out this month. I just want to keep my expectations low just in case I don’t get anything out. I do miss blogging and I miss talking with people online about things. With summer slowly approaching, I should have the time and mental stability to be more of myself. There are a ton of games that I need to write about along with some more stories from my gaming past. I also have these ideas that I’ve had that I need to sit and work through. I’m the type of guy who has lots of ideas, but needs to figure out what is realistic or not. I need to get the ball rolling on finishing more games so I can say that I finished half of my challenge.


Okay. That’s all the time I have for rambling. I need to go back to playing Elden Ring on my Nintendo 3DS. Until next time (soon, it will be much sooner)!

March 2021 Gaming Report

Time. There just doesn’t seem to be enough of it lately. Luckily my time spent this month was on the productive end, and I got to experience an emotion that I haven’t in a while, bliss. At the beginning of the month, I was highly productive and engaged in the games that I was playing to the point I would just mess around instead of focusing on finishing it. During the second half, I shifted my focus to things here on the blog and I now have a backlog of post that are close to finish or in the edit pool. I know all of this wonderful production is going to come crashing in April, but I’m going to endure and keep my eye on the prize in August.

Finished Games

What’s this? Danames found time to actually finish some games instead of building his collection for once? I hear the snark; and yes, I did find time to finish a couple of games this month. The first was thanks to Kim and Genni’s annual Love You Backlog event, where I finished Xenoblade Chronicles for the Nintendo Wii. I wrote a whole post about it, so you can read my thoughts there. I was still struggling to figure out if I enjoyed the game, or if the Wii’s limitations prevented me from enjoying it. I did have the definitive version for Switch ready to play whenever I finished the original, and ever since playing that I determined that it was the Wii’s fault for holding this game back. I do plan on finishing the definitive version since I’m enjoying it so much, and it is holding me over until the drought for physical copies of Xenoblade 2 exit the black market.

The second game I finished was supposed to be for last month’s Pokémon Creator’s Catch collab, but it was a struggle for me play constantly. That game was Pokémon Ultra Sun. As you can tell from my post, Sun and Moon rubbed me the wrong way when I finished the original. Ultra Sun is more of the same from the base game, but with extra content and a new postgame chapter. The post game looks interesting, but sadly this game has given me a really bad sunburn. I probably won’t touch it for a while, and the next Pokemon game I’ll play will probably be the Diamond and Pearl remakes (the redemption arc).


Games Added This Month

Ha ha…ha ha ha…

Let’s not talk about what was added to the collection this month. In my defense, most of them were free or donated to me (and due to blood oath, they will stay with me). Some come from the wake of digital store fronts closing and leaving some games inaccessible without a crime lord’s bank account. We are seeing this with the closing of the PlayStation Network Store for PS3, PSP, and Vita later this year. This sucks since these digital store fronts have been the cheaper option for playing older games without having to sell a kidney or three. More importantly, now that they are closing, I now have to go on a shopping spree to buy titles that I don’t have yet, creating this disgusting feeling of consumerism that I don’t like. At least games on these stores are cheap and can be redownloaded after the store closes; which was one of my biggest concerns.

Outside of that, Monster Hunter Rise came out and that will be the state that I’ll be in for a while. I would love to play this game online with people I know, so if you want to find a time to hunt together let me know please. Otherwise I will finish all of the village quest by next week and move on to the next game while playing this on the side. I will save all my thoughts on the full game at a later time.


Plans For Next Month

I think I have more blog post plan for next month more than games to play. As of writing this, I am listening to the Bravely Default soundtrack that was recently released on streaming services (the music is so good). This makes me want to start Bravely Default 2 since I keep hearing good things about it. I think my burnout from the first game is finally over, and maybe I will double dip by playing Bravely Second on the side (I doubt it). Other than that, I’m started planning out a road map on what I want to do next after I’m done with school in August. The more I draw the idea out, the more I’m looking forward to it since it will be the best thing for me and the accumulated that I’ve built up in the past 3 years. I’m looking forward to sharing it with all of you come August.


And that I all I have for this month. You would think that at this point I would know how to close these things out, but you know…I don’t.

Thanks for reading,

DanamesX

March 2020 Gaming Report

March. Oh March. I feel like this March will go down as the Marchess March of Marches. You’ve heard it all from everywhere, so I won’t repeat it all. Stay safe and hygenic.

The month started out strong, crumbled a bit, and then went upwards toward the end. I fell that my attitude towards gaming was improving at the beginning when I finally finished one of my favorite games. After that, I was lost on what to tackle next; and then things got chaotic in the world. You would think being forced to stay home would mean that I can play all the game I want, but nope. I have been stressed with the whole lifestyle change that my gaming time has felt reduced. The release of a certain game reinvigorated me, and now I’m slowly starting to de-stress.

Games Finished

I managed to finish something this month! I was able to finish Final Fantasy VI: Advance for #MaybeinMarch. I enjoyed my time with the game, and I was sad to finally see the credits roll. If you would like to read about my time throughout the game, I made two post about the setup and my overall thoughts on the game. I plan on going back and completing the Dragon’s Den.

Currently Playing

During my lump, I have attempted to play different games. I managed to find my way to the Four Kings boss in Dark Souls and slowly making my attempts to defeat them. I popped back into Nier: Automata briefly only for my computer to crap out on me. That’s what I get for keeping it on for work. Other than that, there are two games that I have been playing recently during my uplift.

The first one (surprise surprise) is Animal Crossing: New Horizons. Just like how Pokemon Sword helped me during my depression, Animal Crossing is doing a good job keeping me sane during these times. My brothers and I have been visiting each other’s islands; which has been a great way to stay in touch while isolated. I go back and forth on how I feel about this game. Eventually I will write a post on my feelings about this game, but right now I feel that the space has been heavily saturated with Animal Crossing.

The second game I’ve been replaying is Dynasty Warriors Gundam: Reborn. This is the fourth and last installment in the Dynasty Warriors Gundam games. I recently went back to it so that I could obtain all of the trophies in the game. This won’t be too hard since there are no annoying online achievements in this game (what prevents me from 100% the third game). I will say that I enjoyed the third game more than this one, but it is still mindless fun.

New Additions

Besides Animal Crossing, I have been rocking at not buying new games that I don’t have time to play. I picked up this party game called Screencheat, a competitive “shooter” where you have to look at each other’s screens in order to find them. I played it with my wife and brother and we had a good time playing it. I also re-bought Final Fantasy VII for the PS4 in an attempt to play through the game before the remastered came out. I played through it once, but never defeated Sephiroth at the end (if you know my luck with games you can guess why).

Plans For Next Month

My plans drastically changed from what I planned last month. I was suppose to go on a trip and that did not happen. I was also suppose to beat three games, and that did not happen. One would assume that with being stuck at home I would have all the time now to finish up some games. I am still working from home however, and I have been really good about not gaming during those hours. This may not always be the case once my duties start to dry up and my mentality goes out the window.

I still want to stream, but recently I’ve been getting this feeling of Impostor Syndrome. I’ve seen a lot of people starting to stream, and for some reason my brain makes me feel like I’m just jumping on the bandwagon like everyone else. I know it sounds dumb and I should do what I want, but the feeling is there nevertheless. Please fill free to tell me that I’m being ridiculous and that I should do it. Motivation from other people may help me break the mold.

Numbers

March 2020
Games Finished: 1
Games Added: 3
Finish Total: 191/676

Achievements Earned:
Steam: 9
PlayStation: 5

Most Played: Animal Crossing: New Horizons
Most Played Console: Switch

Current Games in Process:
Animal Crossing: New Horizons


*I am going to refocus all of the games I’ve started and figure out what I am actually playing.*

Thanks for reading,

DanamesX

Final Fantasy VI: Advance – #MaybeinMarch #EndingtheJourney

Hey you! This is a part two to a post that was posted along with this one. If you have not read part one about the history between me and this game, go over and give it a read! If you purposely skipped part one just to read my reflections on it then enjoy! I won’t be upset that you didn’t read the first part. There will be some spoilers mentioned in this post.

Final Fantasy VI: Advance is a Gameboy Advance port of the same name that was released on February 5, 2007. I don’t remember the exact date I got my copy, but it must have been soon after release since it was not difficult to find. Final Fantasy VI: Advance was the same game that players enjoyed the first time, but with an extra dungeon and a polished translation. The sprite work resembles the original and all the familiar sounds are there. I haven’t played the original SNES version of the game, but minus the names of spells and lack of multiplayer, this is still pretty much the same game.

Booting up this game always gives me a shiver. The dark ominous clouds with lightning dancing around them with the angelic 16-bit choir never fails to get me in the mood. From the very beginning, the games states it’s story and atmosphere and never lets up minus some humorous moments that come at appropriate times.

Who Are You People?!

The game has a total of 14 characters, not including four that you can control but are not permanent stays. While you quickly figure out who your favorites are, each character has their own strengths, weaknesses, and complete story arc. You start off with Terra who has been controlled her entire life and questions her free will when she can finally make her own decisions. This complicates things when she discovers she is half human and esper; and makes her question if she is able to live a life as a human or esper. Locke is a thief treasure hunter who has a habit of protecting any woman that he comes across. It is revealed later that his failure to protect someone close to him leads him to this bad habit. Edgar and Sabin are twin lords of the kingdom of Figaro. After the death of their father, Edgar succeeds the throne while Sabin leaves as he views everyone’s reaction as heartless. You soon find that both brothers never stopped caring for one another and each of done their part to help the other. Cyan is a samurai of Doma who loses everything during an attack on Doma. He continues to be plagued by the thought of not saving everyone including his wife and son. Cyan is one of the characters that is inspiring since despite all that he is going through, he still has the will to fight and carry on.

Celes is a former general of the imperial army. Her amazing scene at the beginning of the second act shows how desperate the situation has become. Up until this point, she has had trouble convincing everyone that she is on their side, but then becomes the one to reunite everyone at the end. Gau is a boy raised on the Veldt after being tossed out as a baby. There is a scene that I had never seen before when he reunites with his father that made me both laugh and get emotional in a quick span of time (just another good example of balancing humor and tragedy). Setzer is the gambler in the sky with his flying casino. Setzer felt like a plot point just to get his airship at the beginning, but his determination at the end to keep sailing the skies helps brings his character full circle. Shadow is an assassin who quickly became the most tragic of characters in the party. I won’t spoil his entire story (you have to go out of your way if you want his whole story), but resolution at the end made me happy and miserable. Strago and his granddaughter Relm live in the village of Thamasa and have the ability to use magic. While Strago felt like the less develop character in my opinion, Relm would have been a close second until you learn about her backstory. Both characters are good with magic, but were underused in my playthrough. Finally, there’s Mog, Gogo, and Umaro. They were there and I only used Mog at the end. Nice extra characters to have, however they just join you if you find them.

Final party and order for final boss

Just going to fight this boss….and they’re dead!

The game was easier than I remembered. It is surprising what happens when you fight every battle and not run away from everything (glaring at my younger self). The first part of the game was never an issue getting past, but I always dreaded going to Zozo. Zozo is a town of jerks and giants that pop up everywhere. Dealing with the enemies here was always a pain, but now that I am older and wiser, I teared through the town. From that point on, nothing felt like a challenge. Boss fights were never an issue since I knew what to expect and I could plan ahead. The few deaths that I did encounter were mistakes on my part. The floating continent was were I got my first game over in the game and quickly became my first trouble area. This is also the first site where I had to stop and grind for a bit. Grinding doesn’t fell necessary in this game, but is a fast and easy process if you go to the right areas.

A few other difficult spots I encountered was the fights with Leviathan and Gilgamesh. Leviathan took two attempts while Gilgamesh took about three tries. Out of all the esper (minus Diabolos whom I did not fight), these two were the hardest for some reason. Leviathan was easier when I switch out some characters and gear, but Gilgamesh had to be dealt with after a second grind session. The last area that I had a bit of difficulty was the Cultist’s Tower. You can only use magic in this area, so I had to change my play style a bit since I relied mostly on physical attacks to this point. It is much easier than I gave myself credit for with the right set up. Have your party equipped with Reflect Rings and have the spell Osmoses and you have a nearly indestructible team. I only wished I learned about that soon rather than when I was fighting the boss; or that you can cast Berserk on someone for them to use melee attacks.

Not even the eight dragons, which I thought was going to take a while, were a challenge. I purposely left them for last since the last two are found in the the final dungeon. Even the one in the Cultist’s Tower posed little threat to me. It might have had something to do with the set up I went with and how overpowered I was.

Customize To Perfection

Party stats are determined and influences by several factors. Each character’s individual stats give you a general idea on each character’s focus area (ie. Terra, Celes, and Relm have higher magic stats than most, while Sabin, Locke, and Cyan have high strength). The beauty of this game is that you can change the way characters improve stat wise if you choose so. That comes from the beauty of the magicite system. Magicite are espers in their pure form. Assigning magicite to characters allows them to learn magic. This makes it possible to have all your characters learn all magic and form a league of superhuman spell casters (if you so desire). Whats more, some magicite will increase a stat for each level that character gains. The stat increases cover HP, MP, Strength, Stamina, Magic, and Speed. Stronger espers will reward higher stat increases if you have them equipped. So if you are worried one character has less HP than the rest, equip them with an magicite that increases their HP when they level up. I enjoyed the magicite system since it is simple to understand and does not require any special gimmicks except you have to have it and equip it.

Another helpful tool are relics. Each character can equip two relics. The abilities of relics come in a wide range from the Hermes Sandals that increase your movement speed to Ribbons that negate all status effects. Simple relics can be bought in relic stores, but the more game breaking ones can only be found in dungeons. There are even relics that certain characters can only equip that changes their commands, stats, or grant buffs. For example, equipping the Brigand’s Glove to Locke will change his Steal command to Mug. With the combination of weapons, magicite, and relics, the player is able to create interesting and devastating teams.

Here are some examples of the setups I would employ:

Sabin: Tigerfang – Dragon Claws (Holy) + Genji Glove (Equip weapon in both hands) – Gigas Glove (increase physical attack by 25%) + Raiden/Gilgamesh (Strength +2)

Shadow: Ichigeki (occasional one-hit kill) – Kageuni (can cast Stop) + Genji Glove – Master Scroll (allows person to attack 4 times; with Genji Glove equipped, person will attack 8 times) + Raiden/Cactuar(Speed +2)

Terra: Zantetsuken + Ribbon – Gale Hairpin (reduce MP cost by half) + Valigarmanda (Magic +2)/ Crusader (+50% MP)

Locke: Gladius + Thief’s Bracer – Brigand’s Glove + Cactuar/Lakshmi (Stamina +2)

Everyone else I mixed and matched to fit needs during the final dungeon. Celes and Relm mimic Terra a lot when I was switching them out. The sheer power of Sabin and Shadow carried the team when I was grinding everyone to level 50 and when I had to split the group into three teams. Shadow’s multi hit set up helped with quick dispatching of enemies. The downside was that his attacks were weaker due to the multiple hit, but once he hit level 60 he was hitting for around 1,500 per hit. Due to Sabin’s set up, he was hitting around 6000-8000 per hit. This made leveling up the rest of the team a breeze.

“There is a reason why oppose rhymes with dispose”

I’ve talked this entire time about the game and never mentioned Kefka! Okay real quick. Kefka is one of the most evil, twisted villains in video games. He destroys the world just because dislikes life and hope in the world. No grand scheme or mommy issues, just pure chaos. Not even Chaos from Final Fantasy I was this chaotic and his name is freaking Chaos! The closest that come to him made are the Cloud of Darkness and Exdeath since they wanted to return the world to the void. While they planned and schemed, Kefka was just like “Imma destroy everything because why not.” I know that it is not the full reason why and it could have been because of his mental stability due to the magical experiments done on him. Since he was the first one to undergo the magical experiments, his humanity was shattered due to the process being incomplete. Even with that tidbit of knowledge, you never feel bad for him and the player’s feelings toward him remains constant throughout the game. Maybe they wanted to create a villain with no redeeming qualities to add to the bleakness of the narrative. His final boss fight and music accompaniment are works of art. Dancing Mad will never cease to be amazing.

Kefka’s Pecking Order

Final Fantasy VI is an amazing game that’s only challenge is how prepared you are. I had the advantage of playing this game over and over to know what I was expecting and how to deal with it. For newcomers, the choices that you can make can feel overwhelming due to the number of characters at your disposal. Every character counts since you need to use 12 out of the 14 for the final boss fight. Every playthrough is never quite the same since the player has the ability to main different characters and utilize different strategies. That is one of the main reasons why this game is regarded as a favorite among the fans. To wrap this really long reflection post, I was going to leave a video of me fighting the final boss, but the audio got unsync during recording. I’m still debating if I will put this game over Final Fantasy IX, but for the time being they will both share that number one spot.

Final Fantasy VI: Advance

Developer:
TOSE

Publisher:
Nintendo

Genre:
JRPG

System:
Gameboy Advance

Date Started: 2/15/2020
Date Ended: 3/5/2020
Total Playtime: 50 Hours
Difficulty: Normal
Number of Game Overs: 8
Magicite Obtained: 30/31
Dragon’s Defeated: 8/8
Friends Reunited: 14/14
Items Accidentally Bought at the Auction Because I Fell Asleep: 2

My Personal Rating: S

Thanks for reading!

DanamesX