Sunday, February 10, 2013

Tempest Plays Final Fantasy XIII: Still Stuck in the World's Longest Tutorial

Finished chapter three Tuesday night, and this continues to be the longest tutorial in the history of man. Yes, I realize there's quite some time between the tutorials, but I assume that's because they want you to become familiar with your previous tactics before forcing another one on you. I view that space between learning a new technique as practice time, which isn't really a downfall per se since I have been known to gripe that I don't get enough time to get a feel for a technique introduced in games before I'm having to learn something new. I retain the information given better this way. 

I wouldn't have a problem with the tutorial being rather lengthy, but the problem here is the cutscenes interrupting my groove every three seconds. Granted, I haven't had as many progressing through chapter four as I did before. For a moment there at the start of this chapter, I thought the endless cutscene interruptions were going to be a thing as usual. There was a cutscene at the beginning, and afterwards I took control of Sazh who I walked to a path just to get another cutscene of the path being destroyed before switching to Lightning and Hope. 

I’m still not caring much for my teammates, which is a shame since I can’t truly appreciate the story right now because there are so many interruptions with the cutscenes that I’m still not completely sure what’s going on right now. I'm feeling a bit lost listening to all this l'Cie talk. I plan to spend a little time reading my datalog soon. Something that I confess I haven’t been going, which is highly unusual of me since I can spend hours in these type of games reading the codex. 

The only two teammates who aren’t getting on my nerves 100% of the time are Sahz and Vanille. I still don’t have Fang at this point, but I have met her after Snow’s eidolon battle. I don’t want to base my first impression of her on that initial meeting with Snow because I’m sure there is some ulterior motive there, but it’s not looking too positive for me liking her either right now. That could change once she becomes an actual teammate, though. If I could just care about some of these characters a little more, this would improve my feelings toward the game greatly. 

I’m just about done with this whole “I’m a soldier, peasant, and I have to hide my feelings behind needless snark” act that I’m getting from Lightning. I’m also tired of hearing how much Snow fails at life, love, and everything else, and I just wish he’d tell her off one good time. Snow annoys me equally as much with his whole “big damn hero” complex. I think his intent is very honorable, but his ideas about heroism are a bit unrealistic. That hero song and dance was old before the end of the first chapter. But that falls in line with my feeling that emotions and situations in the Final Fantasy series are over romanticized. And Hope... ugh, what did I do to deserve this? I wish he’d just spit out what he has to say and stop being useless. Granted, I can now use him in a synergist role. So, the whining may not stop right now, but at least he’s contributing something to the team now.

I got to play around with the paradigm shift system a little more, but I’m still largely underwhelmed by the abilities in this game. I guess there’s just not enough variety for me right now. However, I do like the paradigm system. I've been trying different combinations to see what's effective. I like the idea of changing your focus in order to succeed in a fight. I guess I just wish I had more abilities. Even though I know I’m doing a significant deal of damage, all my powers on Lightning feel so “soft,” for lack of better term. I like to be flashy, okay? Don’t judge me. Maybe more powers are something I’ll see more of in the future, though, because as I said I'm still stuck in the world's longest tutorial. 

I’ve picked up my first two eidolons--Shiva for Snow and Odin for Lightning. At first, I was a bit confused about what I needed to do exactly to gain them. It took me about two tries with Snow to figure out exactly what I needed to do to gain Shiva. I kept running game out of time. Lightning's summon Odin, though? That battle was a bit tougher than I imagined. When Lightning acquired her medic role, I scoffed a little, asking myself why would I ever make her a medic. She's a soldier, and I expected to keep her in that role in some capacity... until the battle with Odin where I found it to be very useful. It took me about three tries to get that battle right. Odin didn't outright kill Lightning (he did get Hope once), but I ran out of time trying to fill the gestalt meter. It's a fine balance of attacking and non-attacks that you have to work through. 

Allowing the characters to assume more than one combat role is quite refreshing. Characters aren't limited to one element, and a couple are all around elemental utilitarians. Eidolons seem to take on a much more integral part of the story, which I like. I want to say that Squeenix went a step forward with the summons and paired them with characters whose personalities and instinctive roles align with the eidolon, making the connection between the characters and their eidolons seem more personal. I could be looking into that way harder than most people, but these summons seem to have more of a connection with the characters who wield them like another representation of who they are. 

Little things like that fascinates me and show the potential that this game has. I'm hoping to play more today. I had a Mass Effect withdrawal yesterday and spent nearly the whole day playing my first play through on Xbox (and nearly completing it). I'm trying not to repeat that today.


This blog is a mishmash of thoughts, pictures, and rantings among other things about games I've played, games I will play, and games I am currently playing. From time to time, I may post book reviews that I've written that are about different games and/or game worlds. Feel free to recommend games or add me on the platforms I've listed. I don't do competitive multiplayer much anymore, but I'm always down for some co-op these days. I'm usually DigitalTempest everywhere unless otherwise specified.



PSN: DigitalTempest | XBL: DigitalTempest | Steam: DigitalTempest | Raptr: DigitalTempest

2016 Reading Challenge

2016 Reading Challenge
Tiara has read 6 books toward her goal of 52 books.

Tiara's bookshelf: currently-reading

The Elfstones Of Shannara
tagged: upcoming-reads, currently-reading, 2016-audiobook-challenge, classi...
Gardens of the Moon
tagged: currently-reading, fantasy, z-narrator-ralph-lister, 2016-audiobook...

Tiara's bookshelf: read

really liked it
Review to come.
tagged: 2016-star-wars-reading-challenge and 2016-audiobook-challenge
The Girl from the Well
liked it
More reviews @ The Bibliosanctum TL;DR Review 2.5 to 3 stars. Not badly written… I’m just disappointed by the squandered potential. I’m going to reread Anna Dressed in Blood to make myself feel better about this Longer Review: T...
tagged: 2016-women-of-genre-fiction-reading, horror, and young-adult
Thirteen Reasons Why
I don't think this quite captures the complexity of bullying and suicide, and some of the issues that Hannah started facing toward the end of the novel really seemed to detract even more from the feelings she was going through by having ...
tagged: young-adult, popsugar-2016-reading-challenge, 2016-audiobook-challe...
Star Wars: The Force Awakens
liked it
Spoiler free review to come.
tagged: 2016-star-wars-reading-challenge
The Phantom of the Opera
really liked it
tagged: classic-horror, classics, audiobook, 2016-audiobook-challenge, horr...

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