Part 1: Update One: The Water CrystalUpdate One: The Water Crystal
Hey there, everybody. We're going to be starting Final Fantasy IV today. Other than telling you that I'll be using the SNES portraits and that official dialog is in italics, my own additions in regular type, I don't have a lot to say here, so let's mosey.
One of their finest ventures, I believe. Plus, this game has my third-favorite Final Fantasy character of all time in it.
Anyways, we have to start a new game and we come to one of the most iconic openings of all time.
Plus, listen to that music. It's fantastic and it works really well in this scene. Back when this came out, it was hot shit for world scrolling like this.
The screen fades to white...
...And we come to the deck of the lead ship in the Red Wings and meet our protagonist for our journey, Cecil Harvey.
Oh, sorry, Captain Cecil Harvey.
Cecil is a Dark Knight and wears scary armor.
He appears troubled about something.
No shit, buddy. No wonder you get to be on the Captain's ship.
...Oh. Yeah, that'd probably put me in a down mood, too, no matter what kind of knight I was.
We get hit with a sepia filter, as it's flashback time.
Two black mages and a white mage; things look tense in this room, but it's seven soldiers and a Dark Knight versus them. This is going to be one hell of a fight.
They shy back as we approach. Maybe this isn't a fight after all.
In a single move, the black mages are destroyed.
This is not a fight.
It's a slaughter.
No, old man, don't do it!
Oh, sure, throw him across the room, but just horrifically murder the magic users in this room.
Man, look at that shiny. No wonder we're murdering these people.
Cecil takes the crystal, having completed his mission here.
However, on the way out, we see that Cecil immediately feels remorse over this.
Our flashback to ten minutes ago ends.
Cecil is done with his pity-party, though.
Yeah, he totally does. It's why he's looking all down, upset and sad about it, dipshit.
Cecil might have his own issues with what happened there, but he recognizes it as his Dark Knight duty.
: Crystals, posed a serious threat to our kingdom. For Baron to prosper, we need the Crystals. As soldiers of the Royal Air Force, we much achieve this by whatever means necessary.
Cecil isn't happy about it, but he's doing it for his country. I can't damn a man for that.
Ah, what better thing to snap someone out of a funk?
It's time to get our murder on.
I think this battle transition is neat as hell, too. I mean, it's no mosaic effect, but it's still pretty swank.
Our first fight is against these three Floating Eyeballs, which have a whole 20 HP a piece.
They hit about as hard as you expect. But, as you may not expect, this isn't a real fight. It's pretty much a cutscene, showing Cecil being awesome and stuff.
Cecil just throws an item.
Sweet Jesus, Cecil. I think you got 'em.
That attack actually did over 500 damage to all of them, when Cecil could have easily just used his sword and cut them to ribbons.
Somehow, one of the soldiers fell during the battle. I wonder if he got in the way of the Red Fang.
Or maybe he just tripped and now he's acting wounded to save face.
Never mind worrying about that guy, Cecil, there's more easily killed monsters!
A Zu is actually a pretty tough monster; it has 942 HP to its name.
But I don't think this is a true Zu.
The Blue Fang deals lightning elemental damage and it only does a bit over 500 to the Zu.
Yet, it still kills the Zu. It's probably a scripted battle, which I'm okay with, but I kinda liked the thought that Cecil was slaughtering much more powerful monsters than he should be able to.
Well, hey, alright, everyone looks okay.
This text box is weird as hell. I don't know why this box doesn't have Cecil's portrait.
Everyone is okay, which is good. But, there seems to be more monsters than usual, which is not good...
Higher education wasn't exactly part of the Dark Knight curriculum was it, Cecil?
Oop, never mind me calling Cecil an idiot, we're almost done.
We come back to the world scrolling view, passing by a small town.
We come to a castle and a town surrounding said castle. This is Baron Castle, where we'll be landing.
I don't quite get why Cecil has to use the front door here; wouldn't the airships land in some sort of hangar inside the castle? Or is the fleet just parked outside the castle, where all sorts of varmints and critters can get into it?
Next to the doors in here, there are those pull switches that you have to use to get inside. An utterly minor thing, but I think it's neat.
Baigan here is Captain of the Guard, so he's also an important cat in Baron.
Baigan is unimpressed at Cecil's "empathy" and his "morals".
He leads Cecil into the castle.
Just two rooms before the throne room. My only experience with castles is those in video games, so is it ever this easy to get to the throne room in a real castle?
This must be the Royal Waiting Room or something; the throne room is just beyond here, and this seems like a good spot to make people wait before they can see the king.
Uh, alright, Baigan, but we're the ones with the Crystal...
"He felt bad about murdering innocent people!"
"What!? That asshole, how dare he feel bad about those things!"
Baigan doesn't even step out into the hall to get Cecil. It's like when your mom asks you to get your dad, and you just scream his name as loud as you can.
I don't see what else Cecil is going to do with it.
Couldn't that box have said, "Baigan took the Water Crystal." instead or something? I mean, in the original that was "Hand over the Water Crystal", which was awkward, but this still feels rather awkward to me.
That's it, Your Majesty? What about that whole thing where Cecil seemed to be disobedient?
Eh, whatever. I'm sure it's unimportant now.
Uh-oh. Cecil is feeling down again.
Cecil, I don't think you should yell at the king...
Both of them snap over to Cecil; it's kind of funny.
I can only imagine this line spoken as that one host did in the Simpsons.
Y'know, the "Nyeeeeeeeeeeeeess?" guy. This guy.
: My men are confused and displeased.
: No! I only ask...
I hereby relieve you of your command of the Red Wings.
That seems a touch harsh, King. I mean, the guy is only having, y'know, a conscience here.
: This is bullshit!
These two approach and push Cecil back.
Slay the phantom beast that infests Mist Valley and deliver this Bomb Ring to the village of Mist. You leave tomorrow, at first light.
Cecil tries to get around these guys, but they move in front of him.
Over here, too. I don't know why he thinks arguing with the king closer is going to help, but hey, I'm not the Dark Knight here.
But, hey, here's our Dragoon buddy Kain to help!
Yeah, you tell him!
Hey, wait a minute!
Well, that pretty much fucks up Kain's day, too...
What the hell does this ring even look like? Right now, I can just imagine a Bob-Omb that slides around your finger.
Cecil's final words are not heard, as he and Kain are just shoved out of the room.
Out in the hall, they confer together.
You probably should be, Cecil. Kain tried to stick up for you, and now his ass is in trouble.
Kain has a bit more hope than I do about this situation.
Wait, Kain, you're part of the Red Wings? Which ship were you on?
With that, Kain takes his leave.
And we finally get control! Sure, it's been like ten minutes, but still, it feels like a lot longer. All of these options do just about what you expect them to; Item lets you look at and use items, Magic shows a person's magic (for those that can use it), Equipment is, well, what people equip.
Status shows their stats and how much experience until level-up, Order is the position in which the character is on the battle screen, Row is whether they're front or back row (back row people receive half-damage from physicals, but also give half-damage from their physicals), Config lets us, uh, config stuff, Quicksave lets us make a save and put the game down for a while, with the save being deleted when you pick the game back up, and Save lets you make a real save.
Status is about the only interesting one, though. Cecil is level 10, so he's got some experience under his belt, and his stats aren't too terrible. He hits hard and takes a hit well, but that's about it.
Pressing "A" lets us look at what he has equipped, and surprise! It's a whole bunch of Dark related shit.
Config lets you do this. For the most part, I'm keeping things at the default, except window color.
There we go, that's better.
Anyways, even though we just finished talking to him, let's go chat Kain up again.
: My actions are my own.
: Baron, not to plunder.
: Surely the king has his reasons.
: I envy you, Kain. I envy the path you chose.
: I suppose I could have attained a higher rank, had I become a Dark Knight. My father, who passed away when I was still young, was a dragoon. I felt that I could keep some sort of connection with him if I became a Dragoon as well.
Well, don't appear too interested in this bit of Kain character development, Cecil.
Even so, Kain is just, "What the fuck ever, man."
He's got murder on the brain. I like this guy.
: I don't want to be the only one doing his part.
: We should get some rest. We rise early tomorrow.
And so, we should! Let's scoot on up to bed.
Though, hang on, what about those treasure chests?
Press the switch on the wall to open the door.
Ta-da! The wall opens and we can access the chests now.
An Ether? Neither of our guys can use magic! Dammit, game.
The other treasures are a Tent, which will restore HP/MP when used on the World Map, and 480 gil. Gil is the unit of currency in this game, so having lots of it is cool.
There's a run feature in this game, which is awesome and a definite improvement over the original.
And Cecil books ass when running. In this recording session, I actually ran past a few doors I meant to enter, Cecil moves so fast.
On our way to Cecil's room, we get to cross over here and get a little outside view of Baron Castle.
And through this hall, in which a blonde woman stops us.
This is Rosa, Cecil's girlfriend.
And that's true; there's no bullshit between these two during the game. They're a couple, they love each other, they know it and we know it.
Cecil tries to walk away, but Rosa is having none of that.
: I'll visit you later, okay?
Rosa walks away, and I think she understands Cecil wants to be alone right now.
However, she gives him one last look before departing entirely.
Anyways, back to getting to Cecil's room.
This tower is where we need to go, but we're stopped again.
But it's okay, as look at this fucker's beard and that crazy-ass look. Meet Cid, the best fucking character in this entire game.
No, he's not leaping off the tower to come talk to us, but he totally would.
He actually came out of that door he's next to.
Cid has a lot of love for Cecil and Rosa, as I think he's making abundantly clear.
Hurr somethingawfulandgoons hurr
Cid's the castle mechanic or whatever, by the way. He built the airships.
He loves the Red Wings, and likes the airships, too.
: use to slaughter people! Everyone's worried about His Majesty...
I'd be concerned about the monarch, too, if he wanted airships for the express purpose of slaughtering people.
But, enough of those concerns about king and country; Cid's gotta get home.
Bye, Cid, we love you!
Alright, now let's get Cecil to bed.
His room is at the top of the tower.
And he has his own chamber-maid lady.
She departs and Cecil goes into his room.
Cecil sleeps in his armor, which can't be uncomfortable at all.
I can't imagine what it's like to sleep with 75 pounds of metal armor on. It was bad enough when I had a plaster cast on my leg and one arm...
: possessed. And he'll resort to any means to get them. Nevertheless, I can't defy him. How could I cross the man who raised Kain and me like his very own? The chivalrous knight whom I've adored and admired since childhood? I will not betray him. I can't.
Cecil is one of my favorite protagonists, and it's because of things like this; he's an actual human being, doing his job, but he still has morals and compunctions about it. He feels guilty about what he did, and he's angsty about it, but it's justified angst.
As she promised, Rosa comes to visit Cecil.
Stop yelling, Rosa, it's the middle of the night!
Cecil turns away from her, still caught up in his thoughts. It's gotta be bad when you're ignoring your girlfriend.
: to battle this phantom beast? You're acting very strange.
Oh, Cecil, trying to keep her in the dark.
But, Rosa knows that Cecil is full of shit and calls him on it.
This is the first time Rosa hears this; until this, she had no idea that Cecil had done that.
She could very easily turn away from him and leave him alone. It'd be hard to blame her for it, too.
But, she loves him. She's going to support him any way she can.
I don't know if I'd say you're a coward, Cecil. I mean, the man did raise you, give you a home, leads your country...
Rosa is having none of that, though. Her Cecil isn't a whiny baby. Her Cecil is a Goddamned man!
It's enough to get Cecil to roll back over.
: I'll be fine. Trust me.
: Though as a Dark Knight, you know we can never be together...
Okay, maybe I lied about her being his girlfriend. But, still, it's close enough.
One last sigh for the road. Alright, Cecil, get to bed.
The next morning, Cecil comes down the stairs, ready for his mission.
He and Kain meet in the hallway, almost like they rehearsed this.
: Lead the way.
And so, the Dark Knight Cecil was stripped of his command as the captain of the Red Wings. He and the master Dragoon Kain head toward the dark valley for the village of Mist.
The advent of the airship marked the realization of Baron's dreams, but also the birth of its militarism. With its Royal Air Force Red Wings, Baron soon reigned supreme. Now, as monsters multiply and stir unrest, Baron only exploits its power to collect the world's Crystals.
The Crystals silently shed their light...
Alright, before we end this update, there is one thing I have to do real quick. The city of Baron is around the castle.
The Inn and item shop are just inside the city.
And there's the Weapon/Armor shop, and we're next to Rosa's house right now.
The Weapon/Armor shop is also locked, so it may as well not exist right now.
This building, though, is what I'm looking for.
Not the Devil's Road. I'll explain that later. It's the basement here I'm interested in.
This is the training room, which gives you a tutorial on stuff in the game. I'm here, so we won't need that, but see that goofy looking guy on the right side?
This is Namingway. He can change a character's name. He's also supposed to be a rabbit, but I have trouble seeing it.
I still can't really see it there, either. Anyways, I'm changing Kain's name.
And so now, we're done with the first update.
Next time, on Final Fantasy IV, Cecil and Bowser are going to slay a dragon. Stay tuned!