Games > Final Fantasy III
I'll not consider myself exaggerating, if I am to say this
game transformed me.
My life after knowing FF3 can be summed up by the antonym of a popular Sloan
In a word, I was OVERWHELMED.
FF3 was the closest thing to 'the game of my life', if it weren't because
of my obvious young age at the time I knew about it.
This fanfare of mine was probably due to the pretty graphics, like the skeptics
love to say, but pretty graphics aren't nothing without the incredibly sophisticated
and majestic storyline to keep me interested. Indeed, the story is astonishing.
I can't stress enough how well done the plots and the story were, and how
much that element of fantasy, that which has gradually diminished throughout
the latent releases of FFs, was as vibrant as the fire itself.
And then, the Job system that simply hooked me. It comes second to FF5 in
terms of addictivity. I can't quite explain what is it so fun when I can turn
my four personas from warriors (basic class) into Knights, and into Ninjas
again (which was the highest job, probably due to Japanese nationalism, but
I didn't care who claims to be the best). After changing a job, their equipable
weapons and armors, attack type, and pretty much everything else is set uniquely.
Do you know what SCHOLARS use for weapons? BOOKS: BIG BULKY
BOOKS. How about Vikings? and BARD? ... There was also a complicated
parameter-growth chart thingy, but I always seem to make out plans that I
forgot to carry out when I was at it.
I was a dedicated fan. As soon as I realized how good it was, I wanted to
get the most out of it (with the help of a thorough guidebook); I started
the game with characters of names I chose in a serious manner, and played
the game like a FF maniac - trying to figure out everything: read all the
seemingly useless rants of citizens (which sadly I couldn't understand), enjoyed
each and every event sequence and pondered their meanings, enjoyed the mood,
enjoyed the battles, thought hard about purchases, chilled all over about
secret areas I found ............. I was all over it.
When I was not playing the game, I read the aforementioned guidebook that
is made by local publishers. I bloodily read the guidebook, from
the beginning to the end, from the simple story descriptions, the levels,
the conversation translations (which was buggy and full of errors, but I didn't
know better)... to the item descriptions, to the extra-info pages, to the
credits. I read it over and over again. It was already badly torn when I got
my hands on it, and I was not surprised. The guidebook was by the way in Chinese.
(one of the privileges of being a Taiwanese young boy, but look at my glasses!)
My life philosophy changes. The idea of 4 brave warriors
saving the world, and the thought of having accomplished it (sort of with
my Big Brothers' help though) changed my ways of valuation. I nolonger think
I was a little boy, but A little boy that may as well save the world (hehe,
now I think). It gave me tremendous, what you call, self esteem, in a very
mature sense. Which was important for a little kid constantly threatened by
I acquired new habits. Humming songs was one of them. I remembered every melody,
every music in the game, from battles to dungeons, to details of each instruments
and how and when they're played, because I hum along all of them very too
often, sometimes in an effort to pretend I was playing the game on the bus,
and all the time trying to mimic it to the best I could. It was no wonder...
they were splendid. The musics in FF3 are still, after all these years, the
most (dare I say) divine ones in all FF, and if there comes a day when no
one agrees to me anymore(I highly doubt), I will still loudly declare this
No other game would ever produce the same result again, not even if they
do. Which is why I look down on most of the recent so-called RPG games
on the market; I'm sure those NES Dragon Quest gamers also felt this way;
intresting enough I had no similar feelings whatsoever for DQ series (even
though I did play some, with guidebook as well), and I guess it's the same
for them too.
Fine, you say, because Final Fantasy was a great series
to begin with, but maybe I must get on with it. Didn't I already? That's
why I automatically bought the astonishing FF4 and the addictive FF5, and
eventually, the spiritless FF6 and the average FF7.
Now, did I tell you my preferences in FF?
To the even earlier FFs (1 and 2), I must admit that I could not quite enjoy
them now even though I have access to them. I guess the age of introduction
is a major factor here. I thereby envy those who have had the opportunity
to enjoy FF1 and FF2, and I wonder how they would think of FF3.
Ray Chien, May 2001
slightly revised Sep. 2002
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