Final Fantasy II, Beforeposted on 4 Feb 2020
In 1988, one year after the success of Final Fantasy, (then) Squaresoft gave us another game, a sequel to their blank-slate style D&D game: Final Fantasy II. This is one of the 2 Final Fantasy games I had completed, on the original NES no less (the other being Final Fantasy V). I played it on an emulator in my teens, using a patched version of the ROM. However, the first official version wouldn’t be released to the world until 2002, when Final Fantasy Origins was released. Origins was the edition used for Final Fantasy I, however, for Final Fantasy II, we will be using the 20th Anniversary Edition on the PSP, released in 2007.
“A long-lived peace…is at an end. The emperor of Palamecia has called forth monsters from the underworld… and has begun his campaign for world conquest. A rebel army arose in the Kingdom of Fynn to thwart the emperor’s plan. But the rebels’ castle fell to an all-out assault by the empire. Left with little choice, the rebels withdrew to the remote town of Altair. Four youths from Fynn also found themselves fleeing the imperial forces. They had lost their parents at the hands of the empire. But their escape wasn’t over…”
I genuinely do not remember anything of my first playthrough other than finding it a touch bland, but I for some reason believed this one was somehow connected to Final Fantasy III, which was why neither came out worldwide. Oh, the early days of web lore led me astray.
I never tried playing it again, just because the NES games never interested me all that much, the SNES Trilogy was where my heart lived. So with age-old memories, what were my expectations? Practically non-existent.
The only thing I had to look forward to were the countless criticisms of just how god awful this game would be due to its stats system. Truth be told that didn’t bug me. I enjoy the concept of an “experience by action” method, it honestly has always made the most sense to me. So I am looking to be frustrated by the rate of growth or arcane mechanics behind the scenes more than anything else.
The 20th Anniversary Edition of Final Fantasy II features the Arcane Labyrinth: a series of super dungeons with various bosses and items in it. The dungeons you can go through depending on the games ‘keyword’ system. I can say right out: I will not be doing this. End of game super bosses and extra dungeons rarely interest me mainly because of the broken logic. You struggle for the strongest weapon in the game to use on… no one. Everyone worthwhile has been defeated. Only a handful of super bosses have ever interested me and the awkwardness of these dungeons isn’t very interesting to me.
There is also a second story called Soul of Rebirth, which continues the story after the main game. This mode genuinely interests me, but I consider it more of a sequel than a part of the main game, so I might be compelled to do this as a donation incentive or as a bonus game if I finish on-time (or early). We’ll just have to see.