The Let's Play Archive

Final Fantasy VIII

by Cool Ghost

Part 52: Part Fifty-Two: drumfan1988 posted: Where's the drum?

Part Fifty-Two: drumfan1988 posted: Where's the drum?

I'd be bored too, if I spent an entire day lying in bed.

: (What's everybody doing?)

Having just been promoted to Garden Boss, Squall decides to hit the cafeteria after curfew.

What's the matter, didn't feel like breaking in this time?

The dress Rinoa is wearing here is the same one she wore to the SeeD graduation ball.

: (Ok, he's all yours.)

Hey, I can see you whispering.

Fine, fuck you guys!

I'm goin' back to bed!

If you look out the windows in this hallway, you can see trees and other greenery, and you might think "hey, aren't we at sea?" Well, this hallway doesn't really exist. When the Garden transforms, all the outer rooms collapse towards the core and the hallways disappear. This is the only time you'll see one for the rest of the game.

Oh, this is bullshit.

Squall, apparently.

: (Tired.)

My hero.

: You look so down?

You'd be upset too, if you weren't allowed to go to bed.

Wow, rude much?

: You're still a teenager. Why don't you act like one for once?

Squall is acting exactly like a teenager.

: (...Just tired.)

I mean, a teenager with narcolepsy, but still.

Oh, of course. The first day Squall gets to bunk off curfew, there's some shit to do anyway.

I like that the text for this one is "what," as in "what the hell concert are you talking about?"

: How come?
: I'd rather not talk about it.

You might not have heard the announcement, but Squall is The Man now. He can't go to concerts.

(If you pick the other option, Squall just agrees to go straight away.)

Hey, don't be rude to Squall!

: ...Ok, I'm sorry. I can understand why you wouldn't be in the mood. You're probably still thinking about what the headmaster said today. He put a lot on your shoulders. It all happened so fast.

: Who's we?
: Who else? Quistis, Selphie, Zell, Irvine, and, of course, me.

: There's no point if you don't show up.

Ah, I'm sure Selphie will have fun putting on the Garden Festival. And Irvine likes Selphie, so he'll enjoy it. Quistis doesn't like Squall anyway, and neither does Zell. See? They'll be fine.

She's not about to let him off the hook, of course.

: And I'm gonna keep chanting 'concert, concert, concert' and drive you nuts. Is that what you want?

This may not be what Squall wants, but Rinoa knows that it's what he needs. She wants Squall to open up, and Rinoa doesn't do things halfway.

Or you can just agree when she asks.

No matter what, Squall is going to that concert.

Oh shit, Irvine's here. Let's just go, okay?

I don't know where I put Squall at this point, but you can't leave the screen at this point.

You also can't talk to these other students, who are here because .

Hey, Selphie, stop hoggin' the stairs.

No, don't fix your boot, get off the stairs.

Jesus Christ, fine.

: (Looking good together.)

Yeah? Is it on the tiny platform or in the middle of the solar panels?

: (I left an old magazine there. You can thank me later.)

Can I thank you by sending you back to Galbadia?

: (Have fun. Just let it all out tonight.)

Squall's fun. This is a fun game.

: I might be there later with a special someone, too.

Then who's gonna be in the band, dipshit?

If we're gonna go to this concert, we have to actually go to the stage.

Maybe you should have thought about making a move to "off the stairs."

: What's up?

You're in the way of your own concert.

At this point, Selphie fucks off.

This is your own damn fault, buddy.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have some hell stairs to go down.

I love the fact that if Zell is on tap, he's just standing front and centre with no instrument.

: This is all for you! Congratulations! Enjoy the show!

I can already tell this concert is gonna suck.

: Rinoa, don't let him go all the way!

Squall is the type of person I'm sure we all knew/were in high school, who desperately wants this kind of teen movie stuff but will never admit it.

And so, the band launches into their song, which is not on the soundtrack (nor is it very good, this is the mixed-up band).

Bonus feature: you can change the camera angle so you can look at the band from behind. This serves the following purpose:

After a couple seconds, you get control over Squall back, and you can wander off-screen to find this magazine. Must be Irvine's special spot.

Seems to me like the view of the stage would be awful from here, but what do I know?

Also, because he couldn't be assed to dig up an old "Occult Fan" Irvine left us last month's "Guns and Racks."

Squall's not impressed.

: You wanted to talk about something, right?

Here's another fun fact about Irvine's special spot: they're facing away from the stage.

: Things are gonna get real tough for you, huh?

I'm gonna stop the action for a second here and just say Cid is an asshole. We'll get to why exactly as we go on, but just keep that in the back of your mind.

Squall doesn't really know how to deal with the promotion. This is the kind of thing he tries to avoid.

: Squall, I'm sure there'll be a lot of difficult things that you'll have to deal with from now on. We were talking about that, and saying how you'll probably try to handle everything on your own.
: (I probably will.)

This is not news to Squall.

Squall's not really a complicated guy.

Also, I have always remembered this line since I first played the game.

And I've also always remembered Rinoa rolling out of the way of Squall's swat there.

: I'm out of here.
: Oh come on! I'm sorry!

: You can't handle everything on your own.

And so she shoves him off the ledge.

Where he lands on one of my favourite backgrounds in the game. I like the colour blue.

Rinoa is now being even more direct.

Like I said, she knows what he needs.

This is an important scene.

First of all, Squall admits to himself (and confirms to the player/reader) that he is scared of losing people. It's obvious to everyone else, but you have to admit you have a problem before you can deal with it.

: (Nothing lasts in this world.)

This isn't wrong per se, but it's just an observation.

This is the easiest conclusion to reach based on the premise that nothing lasts forever. It's also the least satisfying.

Concerning Squall as a character, this is the most interesting part of the monologue: "again." Squall hasn't said that before.

Up until this point, everything is the same no matter what you do with the band. At this point, though, the scene changes. This is the scene when the scores are mixed up.

: (Huh? What? Oh me?)

Squall thinks Rinoa means she doesn't understand him.

: ...I don't need you to understand me.

: Huh!? What did you say?

Squall didn't say any of his monologue out loud, Rinoa's just been listening to the music.

He says, lyingly.

: What? Oh! No, no, no. I wasn't talking about you. I was talking about the music.

: Geez, what are they doing?

Squall doesn't really know what to do here. Like I said, he wants the teen movie scene, but he's feeling rejected because Rinoa is listening to the music.

And Rinoa wants to talk to him, but she comes on a little strong here.

: (Answer for what...? Oh...)

He says, unconvincingly.

: Ok?

...And the whole thing turns into a fight.

: Are you mad or something? Tell me you are, because this really can't be you!

The problem isn't that he's lying, it's that he's not telling the whole truth.

But she's mad at him now. Squall's whole extreme passivity thing is very frustrating to her.

Yelling at him, of course, is not conducive to what she's trying to do.

So she runs away, leaving him alone.

...And he goes right back to his old ways, where he's just lying about being better off this way. And again, when he says he thinks he was honest, he's not wrong, but it wasn't the whole truth and that's the problem.

That's the end of that scene, but let's take a quick step back. This is another save, with an actual proper band. This one is playing a slow jam that's a remix of one of the game's main themes, but this version isn't on the soundtrack. However, thanks to Hobgoblin2099, here it is for your listening pleasure:

As I mentioned, everything is the same up until the end of Squall's internal monologue. The spirit of the line is the same, but the text is different.

That's actually what most of the changes in this version of the scene are like.

: (Oh me?) Sorry about that. So...are we finished here?
: What? No, I didn't mean you. I was talking about the music. I love this piece but it's been terrible for the last few minutes. Geez, what's wrong with them?

I wish the scene had more differences here. It feels a bit cheap to me that you still get a "bad ending" for this sequence with this score. Because, unfortunately, that's all that changes, is the wording in a couple of lines. After this, it's the same as the last one, and there's no indication that one of the pieces is worse than the other when you're putting the band together, and it especially doesn't make sense when the music you get is a remix of a major theme. It's fine to have the bad version of the scene if the player fucks up the puzzle, but here we solved it and we still get the bad ending. It's frustrating.

Moving on, let's step back again. This is the band with 3 of the instruments in the slow jam, and Zell on tap.

In this situation, Rinoa just finds the music irritating.

: (Huh!? What? Oh me?) Sorry about that.
: What? Oh! No, no, no. I wasn't talking about you. I was talking about the music.

Squall thinks she means he's annoying, she means the music, we've seen this bit before.

This time, though, Squall just decides to leave.

Essentially, this is the "Squall being an asshole" version of the scene.

: I wanna talk more.
: I'll talk about what I want, when I want, to whom I want.

Rinoa's not starting a fight this time, Squall's just blowing her off.

: I just wanna hear you talk. You don't wanna talk right now?
: I thought you didn't want to talk with this annoying music in the background.
: I never said that.

And then he starts the fight.

: Come on, I'm not good enough for you?
: It's not you. I just don't feel like it.

: Fine... I understand.

But, as in the preceding scenes, she ends up running off.

And leaves Squall with this.

This is a pretty straightforward scene: Squall feels insulted and bites back, ending up pushing people away when they want to get closer to him. It's similar to the scene with Quistis in the secret area like that. What's confusing, though, is the trigger. You have to mix three of the instruments from the second score with one of the first. It doesn't trigger if you mix it 3/1 the other way (you just get the first scene I showed), and it's got more difference in the text and mood than just having the first score all together. It's kind of like how Zell's scene after beating NORG takes precedence over Quistis's. I don't know if it was planned that way or what, but there you go.

Anyway, one more step back. This time, the band is playing an irish jig, which is apparently a remix of the Final Fantasy V town theme. And again, thanks to Hobgoblin2099, you can listen to it:

This time, though, she's not distracted by the music. This is the "good ending."

: Not only is he good-looking. He's the sweetest guy...a great listener. Right now, he's seriously thinking about what I said. He's shy and doesn't say anything, but I know.

It's very important that Rinoa says this out loud. Not saying things doesn't solve the problem of not saying things.

He still doesn't know what to do, though.

: Just think about this. This might be the only time we'll all be together.

The irony being that he thinks about that all the time.

And they come to very different conclusions on it.

The pessimistic conclusion here is the easy one to reach.

: There are no guarantees in the future. That's why TODAY, the time we have now, is important.

This is a major theme of Final Fantasy VIII, put into words for easy digestion.

He's still being stubborn about things, but she's taking a softer approach this time.

And says something very important, very plainly. This is what Squall needs, things explained to him like a child.

Because he's really goddamn bad at accepting them.

: Call on us whenever you need to. We'll be waiting.

Of course, it's hard to believe this sometimes. Having faith in people can be very difficult, especially when you've been left behind before.

But nothing will ever change if you don't try to change it.

Squall, of course, tries to live in the moment by sheer passivity.

: That's something I'd rather not talk about.

I get the feeling like he's embarrassed by this, rather than blowing her off.

: What about you?
: ...I don't know. I guess I'd rather not talk about the future, either.

These two have a lot in common.

Unlike Squall, though, instead of living in the moment by merit of passivity, Rinoa actively embraces it.

And the band plays on.