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    Feb 9th, 2007 at 04:22:16     -    Final Fantasy Tactics (PS)

    Gamelog entry for Friday, Febuary 06, Part 2

    I got up to Dorter this time, with most everyone well on their way to their chosen builds. Given that, it was a pretty easy fight. It's actually supposed to be rather hard. If you don't grind for a bit then all you'll have are Squires and Chemists, and you're up against Archers, Wizards, and a Knight. This is actually where I stopped playing the first time I played FFT, I just couldn't beat Dorter. I put the game down for three years until I finally figured out what to do.

    This time, I sent Vincent and Charlotte up to kill an Archer in a high place, while leaving St Germain and Dracula to take out the knight and first Wizard. Unfortunately, I wasn't paying attention and got Dracula killed, but not before he Bolt2'ed the pair. The Archers and other Wizard fell pretty quick (especially when an enemy Wizard took out one of his own guys to kill Algus. Not that I blame him.), even before Charlotte could get down to Raise Dracula. Don't mess with a Monk's fists of fury, man.

    FFT is one of the few RPGs to make battles actually fun, trying out new tactics and sometimes having the fail horribly. While it's not the most balanced game (some classes are definitely better than others), it fits together, and at least is more balanced than Disgaea.

    It's late. I'll add another entry tomorrow.

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    Feb 8th, 2007 at 23:58:09     -    Final Fantasy Tactics (PS)

    Gamelog for Friday, February 09, entry 1.5.

    This is just a quick thing where I can detail my plans for my characters. Given that so far they're mostly in chat logs spread across two operating systems, this seems like a good idea. And I like to talk about job classes and builds.

    -Dracula (Ramza)-

    Main Class: Summoner
    Secondary: Wizard
    Reaction: Dragon Spirit
    Support: Equip Sword
    Movement: Teleport

    Since Ramza gets a male unit's physical growth and a female unit's magical, he makes a good choice for either path. Since Dracula's main power is to summon and control monsters, Summon Magic was an obvious choice. And since he's a magician, Black Magic is a good secondary. He gets Dragon Spirit (gives Reraise status) because he always comes back from the dead and Teleport because the first form of Dracula's attack pattern has ALWAYS been to teleport around shooting fireballs at you. Equip Sword is because according Lament of Innocence he used to be a knight, so hey, sword. It's not the best idea for a caster unit, but I'm going for theme over power here.

    -St. Germain-

    Main class: Ninja
    Secondary: Geomancer/Time Mage
    Reaction: Abandon
    Support: Equip Shield
    Movement: Teleport

    The idea behind St. Germain is that he has incredible dodging abilities. With ninja as a primary class, Equip Shield for the Uber Shield, Abandon (raises Evade) and the best mantle, about the only things hitting him will be certain un-evadeable spells and very very lucky enemies. (before anyone says "Blade Grasp", I'm going for magic /and/ physical evade here) He teleports around through Curse of Darkness, so obviously he gets Teleport, and since one of his attacks as a boss fight is to raise vines from the ground, Geomancer is a good choice, since the most common attack is Hell Ivy. He also has control over time, so I'll substitute Time Magic in as I need it.

    -Leon-

    Main class: Knight
    Secondary: Ninja
    Reaction: Counter
    Support: Abandon
    Movement: Move+3

    Leon being a knight ingame, he gets to be a knight, especially since Belmonts for a long time tended to be slow, clunky creatures. Since Leon's one of the modern ones, with the decent movement, he also gets Abandon and Move+3. Counter is a good, fighter ability to have, and Throw is there because he throws his subweapons. Not much to see here.

    -Charlotte-

    Main class: White Mage
    Seconday: Wizard
    Reaction: Counter Magic
    Support: Magic AttackUP
    Movement: Fly

    Charlotte is pretty basic. Main and secondary classes can be switched around, depending on if I need speed or magic power; Magic AttackUP fits with her super mage image and is a good ability. Fly works since she can turn into an owl, but Reaction was harder. I eventually went with Counter Magic, if only because generally once you get hit with a spell in PoR, you'll be hitting back pretty quickly. I would've LIKED to give her MA Save, but that's a Bard-only ability, and Bards are male-only. But she works well enough.

    -Vincent-

    Main class: Thief
    Secondary class: Mediator
    Reaction: Gilgame Heart
    Support: Secret Hunt
    Movement: Move-Find Item

    Hahaha. Vincent's the merchant in PoR, so it's hard to say what his battle abilities are like (hint: non-existent), but I wanted a thief and with his prices, he definitely qualifies. As of such, his reaction is Gilgame Heart, which gives you Gil in an amount to how much you've been damaged, times ten, and his movement is Move-Find item, which finds you find items hidden in the ground. (and is how Germain is getting his nifty shield later) Secret Hunt lets me get Poach items and get cheaper items from fur shops. (and how Charlotte will become virtually immortal later, assuming I want to put in the effort) Second class is Mediator because uh...he talks to Charlotte and Johnathan about things? Yeah, it's a hard sell, but there really wasn't anything else. I just like Mediators.

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    Feb 8th, 2007 at 23:21:10     -    Final Fantasy Tactics (PS)

    Gamelog for assignment Friday, February 09, entry 1.

    Ah, FFT. Easily the best FF on the Playstation. (the SNES ports lose because of loading times) The sprites are high quality and still look gorgeous today, with an incredible range of expression. The music is mostly awesome, the story is deep, if poorly localized, and the gameplay is pure sweet (easily broken) SRPG goodness.

    I've played the game before, ending with a hideously overpowered team consisting of a Wizard/Summoner with Short Charge, a Priest with Math Skill, two Ninja, one being Agrias, and Dragoon Ramza with the best spear and shield in the game. The game stopped being hard around the middle of the first chapter. I even took down Wiegraf in under two turns. This time, I decided to break the game /slightly/ less.

    I tried to do this before with a Ninja Single Class Challenge (everyone's a ninja, and ONLY a ninja), but I got bored with trying to grind everyone up the job tree to ninja before Dorter, the third story battle in the game. (ninja is one of the last classes you can get, so that's a lot of grinding) I'll come back to that someday, but for right now I'm going with a Castlevania-themed game. By limiting my options to things that resemble Castlevania character's powers I can't steamroll over everything without trying, but I should have a varied enough team that it won't be as hard as a full SSC. And I can build characters up at my own pace.

    The first few battles in the game are mostly tutorial battles with a pre-made team. The very first one even consists entirely of AI characters (besides Ramza), so you only have to worry about yourself. It's slightly annoying, because it's mostly watching the game play itself, but it does give you some idea of how the game works without letting you get yourself wiped out. They save that for the NEXT battle, where they give you a small team of cadets and tell you to kill some other low-level punks. It's actually not too hard, since you get AI character Delita on your side, who will happily absorb some hits and smack people around for you. I got lucky and had a good team, so it wasn't too hard to wipe them out. After that I stripped and ditched every single one of them.

    Using the money gained from selling all their equipment, I bought myself three male and one female squire. Two of the males had good Brave, and the other two hirelings had good Faith, which fit my plans perfectly. I changed the girl into a Chemist and set off to the next battle, where you gt the best reward possible: Ten extra Brave for abandoning Algus. This translates into two permanent brave, so it's a little annoying I accidentally left one of my physical boys at home while accidentally taking along the guy destined for Move-Finding (which is based on 100 minus your Brave, so lower is better). I did manage to kill Algus, though, so good for me.

    After that it was mostly just grinding enough to get my Chemist Charlotte to Priest and Dracula Beoluve to Wizard. Everyone has Gained JP Up to make things easier, and I should be moving along to knights and monks soon, possibly before Dorter. Money is tight, but I'm making it. My first knights will probably still be mostly naked, though.

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    Feb 4th, 2007 at 06:26:47     -    Phantasy Star (SMS)

    I finally picked this back up again, after forgetting about it a for a few weeks. I had just picked up my third party member, Odin the strongman, and since he had a Compass stashed in a chest all the way across the dungeon from him, obviously we had to go to that village in the directionless forest that guy in town had mentioned. Oh 8-bit RPGs.

    Once there we fought Bat Men (sadly, more like vampires than dark knights) until we had enough money to get him a gun and a Bronze Shield. And since I spent all that time fighting and getting a gun, I suppose I should talk about the battle system now.

    Phantasy Star fights are first-person, a lot like Dragon Quest. In fact, they're pretty much the same. Now, normally while attacking your characters will randomly hit a creature for some amount of damage. This can get pretty annoying (NO DAMNIT TAKE OUT THE WOUNDED ONE), but generally works all right. Guns, on the other hand, hit every creature for a set amount of HP and never miss. The trick is, they do really low amount of damage. The gun I just picked up, the Needle Gun, does five damage per hit. In comparison, Alis with her Ceramic Sword does anywhere from ten to twenty-five damage per hit, depending on the monster. And the weakest monster in the game has 8 HP, which means it takes Odin two shots to kill stuff Alis was one-shotting five levels and three swords ago. But they're great against crowds and chipping enemies down to where Alis and Mayu can take them out in one hit.

    After grabbing a gun and finding out where the Elder of the village had hidden the dungeon key (in the first dungeon of the game. We didn't see this earlier how?), we set off on quite possibly the goofiest quest in the game. See, we have to see the Governor-general of Motavia to get his blessings in the fight against Lassic, and so he can hook us up with our final party member, Noah the magician. Problem is, the Governor-general needs to be bribed with something sweet before he'll see us. Well, at the bottom of a dungeon you'd never think to look at unless you were wandering around the world map in desperation, there's a cake shop that will sell you some world-famous shortcake.

    Yeah, even the shopkeeper admits it's a lousy location.

    So after fighting my way through bloodthirsty monsters for half an hour (WITH a map), I grabbed the cake and finally managed to see the Governor-general of Motavia, who nicely gave me a letter to convince Noah to join us. Too bad he lives in a cave full of monsters across a dessert full of monsters and pissed-off Motavians who don't like a bunch of stupid Palmans running around on their planet. (actually, you can talk with the Motavians, who will mostly turn out to be friendly and give you some townsperson advice before wandering off. Not all encounters have to end in violence!) I made it to his cave, but since it was pitch-black and I forgot to grab a flashlight in town I just saved outside his cave and gave up for the night. Another nice thing Phantasy Star had, the ability to save anywhere.

    No matter how often I play this game, I always find myself amazed at how incredibly ahead of it's time it was. This game came out literally a few days after the first Final Fantasy in Japan and is larger, prettier, better-put together, and has a plot that actually makes a lick of sense. About the only thing FF has on it is choice of characters in the beginning and the ability to choose your targets, neither of which give it of a leg up. It's a pity we don't have a true Phantasy Star V by now, I'd love to see it.

    This entry has been edited 1 time. It was last edited on Feb 4th, 2007 at 06:28:43.

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