Welp! Back in the “Let’s Play Final Fantasy” saddle after a real life “ack, the ‘rents are visiting!” hiatus.
(This chunk will be a bit short. You don’t mind, do you?)
As per Galuf’s last wishes, it’s time for us to launch his long-delayed assault on Castle ExDeath. I would pretend that this is the endgame, except that I’ve played FFV before, and cannot help but be aware that this is really the “Let’s go to Zanarkand / City of the Ancients / Lunatic Pandora / OOPS there’s more plot” dungeon. Still, here we are.
To recap our lighthearted romp through FFVland: three Crystals are kaput, our first ship has sunk, Faris is still the most glorious pirate, Lenna is a friend to everything with fur and scales, Galuf has regained at least some of his memories, and Butz is still a charming goofball. So, can our erstwhile Four Warriors of Light save the remaining Crystal?
As usual, I’d like to start my Let’s Play Final Fantasy with (1) a link to Moogle University’s FFV write-ups which inspired my own playthrough and (2) the opening FMV from the PS1 remaster (Final Fantasy Anthology, 2003, which is what hooked me on this game despite the flatter-than-Data’s-poetry localization):
Dear Squeenix, when you turn Amano’s concept art into 3D, you do not have to leave their skin the color of a piece of paper.
It’s amazing how quickly graphics look dated, isn’t it? But Uematsu’s music still soars.
I adore the outrageous spines and jewels sticking out of everything, especially that pirate ship.
Black trenchcoat? Check. Katana? Check. Bishie badassitude? Check. Sephiroth, you are a cheap imitation of the ORIGINAL appearance of this character design. Nyah nyah.
Now let’s start the iOS edition.
Okay! I’m not entirely happy with the stretched iOS redraws of the original character sprites. So, while I’m going to be screencapping from iOS FF5, I’ll be featuring some original-game sprites from videogamesprites.net for snark & commentary. Also, just to be even more confusing, the iOS version appends Amano’s original character portraits to speech boxes — concept art that the in-game sprite designers sometimes completely ignored!
Note: Boldface is actual game dialog, non-bold is my paraphrase, or…er…embellishments.
Now that we’ve had a taste of the current generation of graphics, here’s a quick glance at the 1991 original SNES graphics of Final Fantasy IV (released in English as FFII, since the previous two games weren’t):
I’m glad that old-school players were able to fall in love with FFIV despite the choppy translation. Then again, I adore FFV, even though my version is the uninspired PS1 translation.