I can’t very well start up a new Let’s Play when I’ve already got LPs for FFVII, FFX and Revenant Wings hung up mid-game. In fact, arthritis as well as writing and Life have gotten in the way of my gaming for most of this year. But I’ve been having a rough month, and I wanted some mental thumb-sucking. KABOOOM in games is so cathartic.
So I downloaded Final Fantasy Record Keeper (it’s free, it’s fanservice). I quikcly discovered that random battles, retro graphics versions of old friends, and glimpses of all the games I’ve shared on this blog since 2013 hit the spot. It’s very satisfying to drop my favorite characters into different ‘verses, although I have to imagine and interpolate their snark and battle banter. But hey, I did that for my FFI playthrough, and that was a lot of fun, eh?
I’m not gonna write up a Let’s Play of this game, but I’ll share what few tips I’ve figured out at the end of this post.
[NOTE: If you’re playing FFRK already, recruit my Lulu RW with the friend code SuCW. If you haven’t played FFRK before, and want to try it, use my invite code to download it, and you’ll net me a piece of Mythril.]
I was very lucky that a “Go Go Gullwings” event was in progress (it expires in two days!) that let me pick up a half-dozen FFX and X-2 characters almost immediately, giving me a Team Gullwings and Big Blue Kitty party:
That’s actually the FFX-2 starter dungeon on Besaid where the Gullwings go to hunt down Wakka when he disappears looking for a sphere of his parents. It has the music from FFX-2, including the battle victory theme, which is surreal (but not unpleasant) with mostly FFX characters. Playing this game forcefully reminds me just how great a composer Nobuo Uematsu is; one can have fun bopping from dungeon to dungeon and hearing all his different themes.
The funny thing is that since I played that Event first and picked up Kimahri, I wound up with him fighting himself when I went to the “replay FFX boss battles” dungeon:
Look, it’s Kimahri vs. mini-Kimahri! “Sometimes we don’t really understand him either.”
You don’t have to have played all the old FFs to fully enjoy Record Keeper, but I’m enjoying all the “oh! I remember you!” nostalgia kicks when I run across a really old monster I’d forgotten from the early games. Oh look, it’s one of those crazy rats from… FFV? I forget, but it’s vintage.
Yes, I’ve picked up at least a few characters from other realms. Paine is such a badass that I haven’t used Cloud much yet.
There was some item I picked up that let me recruit any one character, and I chose Braska thinking he’d probably not show up as soon as Auron does. But no, FFRK is canny; it knows Auron is popular so it’s going to delay his appearance as long as possible! Sneaky sneaky.
I also drew Lulu’s Mog as my first rare relic. It is SWEET. To think, once upon a time I refused to acknowledge her dolls’ existence because I thought they detracted from her cranky badassitude, much like the fanservice outfit. (An essay for another time: intelligent, strong, and blunt female characters in Final Fantasy games are frequently dressed in fanservice outfits or softened in some other manner to make them less intimidating to guys.)
But I’m straying from my point. Here’s Mog, seen bashing the rat on the nose in the above screencap.
And here’s an example of the “Icy Smile”
overdrive Soul Break. Resistent or no, these puppies went down hard, and the damage was still several thousand HP x4 on every target.
For a video of this Soul Break, see my 5-minute demo of Team Gullwings & kitty powering through a Spectral Keeper type boss in the FFX-2 Zanarkand Ruins.
My meagre store of Final Fantasy Record Keeper Tips after playing all of 2 days:
- Entering battles takes Stamina. Looks like it recharges at a rate of 1 per three minutes, so set yourself a timer and get some work done when you’ve run out.
- Try to save Mythril for Relic Draws, as much as you can. Stamina recharges. If you have to, use 1 Mithryl to camp in a dungeon and heal your party before a boss battle.
- When you first click on a dungeon name to enter, be sure to click the “Boss” tab and study the boss’ weaknesses for strategy to help you decide which abilities to equip. They’re all based on how they appeared in the original games— red dragon vulnerable to fire, e.g.
- Hone abilities so that you can use them more often in each dungeon.
- [Upgrades & Inventory > Create Abilities] You use the Orbs you pick up as loot to create new abilities. Press and hold a spell or ability to see what orbs it requires. If you have orbs of the right kind but the wrong degree of power for a particular spell, you may be able to exchange larger orbs for smaller ones or vice versa in [Upgrades & Inventory > Orb Exchange] (it costs gil).
- [Upgrades & Inventory > Growth Eggs] Growth Eggs are look that lets you pour XP into your characters so they level up faster. Haven’t found any penalty to doing this so use them.
- Check the expiration dates of Events. If Stamina hasn’t regenerated, you can’t enter Event dungeons without burning up Mythril to restore your Stamina. Whereas the other dungeons will be there for you later.
- [Upgrades & Inventory > View/Sell Items ] Lock good items so you don’t accidentally consume them while upgrading weapons/armor (which can be done by burning up materials picked up in dungeons or by burning up pieces of equipment. All those common drops like knives are actually good for something!)
- Before doing a Relic Draw, check [Upgrades & Inventory > View/Sell Items] to make sure you have enough open slots. You can stash up to 10 items to free up slots, then click the “Vault/View” icon at upper right to access the ones you stashed.
- [Upgrades & Inventory > Break Level Cap] Characters are initially capped at level 50; you’ll find cap-breaking Memory Crystals as prizes in some dungeons.
- Just play around and don’t worry about the fact that the game throws a buttload of stuff at you. There will always be buttloads to do and play with.
- While waiting for Stamina to recharge, go to [The Annex > Library > Help] and read up on how everything works. Or just explore all the nooks and crannies of the game until it’s less of a bewildering maze of STUFF.
- Roaming Warriors unleash the Soul Breaks (i.e. overdrives) of other players’ best characters, which they’ve designated as their Roaming Warrior in their [Menu > Friends > Profile]. If you summon a Roaming Warrior in battle, it gives that player gil! So be sure to designate a Roaming Warrior (one of your characters; they’ll still be available for you) on your own profile.
- Add friends you know with their friend codes, which they’ll find on their profile. Mine is SuCW. If you haven’t played FFRK before, use my invite code and I think I’ll be added automatically (I’ve got a nice Icy Smile Soul Break for Lulu).
And now hopefully my stamina has recharged enough I can go back into…where was I? Oh, right, FFXI: Maze of Shakhrami.