The Let's Play Archive

Final Fantasy VIII

by Cool Ghost

Part 67: Part Sixty-Seven: Clash of the Gardens

Part Sixty-Seven: Clash of the Gardens

Here we are on the Centra continent, looking for Edea's house and finding Galbadia Garden, which is parked here for whatever reason.

Let's ram it.

As soon as you get close, the scene cuts to the bridge of Balamb Garden.

Don't tell me what to do, Nida.

Please note that G-Garden was facing away in the world map screenshots. Apparently any vehicle Edea is in does a 180 for FMVs.

Squall zooms in on the Garden just to make sure.

Nida: What do you think?
: (They probably know we're here, too. If not, we'll make the first move.)

This is what it's all been building up to, no going back now.

Nida: The sorceress is with them, huh? So this is going to be the final battle?
: I hope so.

Squall's responsibilities have been ramping up ever since Timber, and this time he's fully in charge.

: (I have to try to keep it simple. If I give out too many orders, it could lead to chaos.)

Of course, he's not entirely sure of what to do. But, as usual, he's keeping that strictly internal.

And so, you're presented with a list of potential orders to give.

Which orders you give or don't doesn't really matter, but there's one on this list that's obviously more important than the others.

Anyway, we're just gonna look at all the orders, so imagine me going down that list one by one, pressing X on each one.

Once you're done picking orders, Nida reminds Squall to say them out loud.

: This is Squall speaking. This is an emergency so listen carefully. We're going into battle against Galbadia Garden.

At this point, he launches into a speech made up of mix-and-match bits based on which orders you chose.

If you say nothing, Squall decides to stun everyone with his leadership, like so:

: I'm not going to issue any orders. I trust that all of you will take the necessary steps to get through this. Good luck.

What a hero.

But, assuming you do issue orders, this is what comes up, top to bottom:

(My feelings on this):

: As you may all know, Seifer is with them. I plan to settle everything, once and for all, with this battle.

This makes it sound like a petty shit fight. "I'm gonna kick Seifer's ass, sorry if anyone dies."

(The Garden's course):

: The Garden will proceed straight ahead. Set speed at 50% in case we need to take evasive maneuvers.

Probably a good idea to tell Nida what to do.

(Prepare for the attack):

: 1st and 2nd Class Sabers, assemble in the parking lot. Those with MG rank of 3 or above, head for the 2nd floor deck and await instructions. Be sure to warm up.

Definitely a good idea to tell people who's leading the charge.

This sequence is the only one in the game where we get any kind of designation of Garden troops other than SeeD vs. Not SeeD.

(Prepare for our defense):

: The enemy will probably come aboard. We must concentrate our forces at the front gate and the quad. If your Student ID is even, report to the quad. If it's odd, report to the front gate.

Another good order to give. Defence will be key to not having everyone in the place die.

(Call my comrades):

: Quistis, Zell, Selphie. Come up to the bridge right away!

These guys almost definitely would have shown up anyways. Also, he forgot Irvine and Rinoa.

(What to do with the hot dogs):

: Cafeteria team, collect all the hot dogs and store everything in the secret shelter. Don't leave anything for the enemy.

It's extremely important that the Galbadians do not get their hands on the hot dogs.

(Take care of the junior classmen):

: Those who have Student ID numbers ending with an 8, take care of the junior classmen.

Remember, the junior classmen are literal children, so this is pretty important to tell people.

In fact, if you don't give this order, this happens:

Dr. Kadowaki: Students who have Student ID numbers ending with an 8, please take care of the junior classmen. Is that alright with you, Squall?

You cannot just abandon the children to their fates. It's gauche.

Nida has a line after you give your orders:

If you give too many, he gets mad. Joke's on him, though, 'cuz his cheque just got lost in the mail.

He also (fairly) chastises you if you don't give any orders.

This causes Squall to realise he's been a dumbass, and you get the bits about the attack and defence from above, plus Kadowaki telling people to protect the junior classmen.

If you give the right orders (attack, defence, call your comrades, protect the junior classmen), Nida just doesn't say anything.

Once Nida's finished, Irvine yells at you from downstairs. He says this if you don't call your comrades.

And he says this if you do.

Anyway, here we are, meeting up with, uh...most of everyone after we give the orders.

: Sorry about that.

It's an opportunity to chat, which is a responsible act at this time.

Selphie is fuckin' pumped for this.

But it's Quistis who moves things along.

It's always worked well for us in the past.

He what?

: Yeah, he said he hasn't slept at all lately.
: What...? Oh yeah.

Quistis seems a bit confused by this.

And Irvine just shrugs.

: What are you guys talking about?
: Nothing. It's our little secret.

It's clear that they're lying about Zell taking a nap, but this super isn't the time for this.

There's not time to stand around arguing about Zell, either, though. It's time to move.

By the way, Squall's ID number is odd, so he should be headed to the front gate.

Since it doesn't really matter who's in this party, and it's not going to last long anyway, I just picked randomly. It happened to be identical to the party I was using before.

: Alrighty!

Read: there are no random encounters in Garden at the moment.

: Alright, let's go to the quad.

Let's mosey.

Irvine will not talk to Squall here.

Also, if you leave the room and come back, he disappears.

And yet, when you get to the elevator, he comes running out, worried about Rinoa.

She'd slipped his mind earlier, I guess.

: You guys take care of her.

There's no room for Rinoa in Squall's party, but he can trust these guys.

Irvine gives a little wave, and the elevator descends.

At this point, the game cuts away to a nature documentary.

Galbadia Garden flies by and scares the deer away. What a bunch of assholes.

And we're back with Squall. Even though we're going to the ground floor, he decided to stop on the second for whatever reason.

There are some people milling about here.

Trainee: Indirect magic operative, level 2, sir.
: You're a 1st class MG. Report to the deck immediately!
1st Class MG: Yes, sir!

And so, he runs off.

These guys over here have also decided to practise loitering, apparently.

: What about you guys?

These guys' whole job is to cast Fire.

She's a medic.

: You two head for the deck. Medic, report to the defense team.

We have now completed the important task of telling people their smoke break is over.

If you enter the hallway during this scene, this girl yells this and runs past.

Why are there so many people in the hallway right now?

The kid is always running through the hallway, so you don't have to worry about missing this because he left the screen.

: You're supposed to be in the classroom.

Again, though.

While we're here, we can also see that the classroom has a special camera during this sequence.

This girl wants to be a SeeD. She's a known Garden personage.

Over here, a kid is getting a pep talk from a friendly SeeD. You might notice that this is the first SeeD we've seen around the place. Most of Balamb's troops are students.

And finally, we have a child who has been taught to use powerful magic.

: Pay attention, or you're going to burn yourself.

This is good advice.

Now, look at that kid. He's maybe 11 or 12. It's never stated exactly when people start training with GFs or Para-Magic, but they start 'em young.

That's all for the second floor right now.

It's much busier downstairs. Messengers are running around all over, and you can see groups massing up for the defence.

Some of these people even have lines.

Forward Defense Captain: Our morale is soaring because of your leadership.

Quad Reserve Personnel: I'll be there later. Good luck!

Everyone is glad to be fighting alongside Squall.

There are some more folks to talk to on this screen.

There's also a save point, set up especially for this battle.

We'll just take a minute to waylay these people.

And now, let's hit the quad.

As soon as you enter, you can hear Zell instructing the troops.

You can also see him running off here.

: This is the big one, guys! We gotta win, no matter what!

There he is, addressing the quad defenders. Again, notice that they're all cadets.

"S'up," he says.

: I thought you were sleeping?
: Oh...! Yeah, y-your announcement woke me up! My student ID is even, so I'm supposed to be here, right?

I'll give Zell credit: he at least left the beer pong tournament to do his job.

He takes Squall aside to talk privately.

No, it's probably not.

: (...What is it?)

Squall is sceptical about the importance of this conversation.

He's right to be.

: I won't lose it or anything. C'mon, what do you say?
: Why do you need it?

Oh, well in that case.

: C'mon, just give it to me. You can trust me.

A persuasive argument.

By the way, Squall being a dork about jewellery is a small sub-plot during this sequence.

Persuaded by Zell's arguments, Squall removes his ring. Interestingly, he doesn't take his glove off first, which means that he must wear the ring outside of the glove.

Zell is fuckin' psyched to get Squall's ring.

: I didn't think you were gonna give it to me. Rinoa is gonna be so happy!
: Rinoa?
: Alright, Squall! Leave this place up to me!

Yeah, sure. Good luck.

On the way out...

For whatever reason, Irvine doesn't show up until after his line.

Rinoa is also a little late to the scene.

: I hope this is the last time we have to fight in our home.

This is just Zell's line if you talk to him here.

: Then we definitely can't give up this place.

Yeah, so don't lose.

Over here, we get a chance to talk to Rinoa.

Once you do, she runs over to join the troops.

There she is, right at the front.

Shit's about to get started.

: Zell, I'm counting on you. Good luck, everyone.

No, Zell, that can wait.

Meanwhile, on the bridge, Nida is telling Squall to look at stuff again. Dude loves to look at stuff.

Galbadia Garden is getting closer and closer.

And there's Seifer, paralleling Squall's position.

Nida: Seifer is in charge over there. They're heading right for us!
: Just keep going.

And so, Nida jams on the gas.

Then we cut over to Galbadia Garden's bridge.

Nice stance, Seifer.

He doesn't say anything, just waving his arm to give the order to attack. And how is Galbadia going to attack, you ask?

By ramping motorbikes with jetpacks at us, of course!

This goes better for them than it probably should, with the cyclists reaching the Garden.

And, inside the place, all hell breaks loose.

Nida: We're gonna crash!!! (This line is only on-screen very briefly.)

: Go right!

Going right.

And now, we're gonna be Zell for a bit.

As you can see, there are Galbadians on motorcycles driving through the quad now. Touching them affects nothing, they're just set-dressing.

Good advice, Zell. Thanks.

If you were wondering, by the way. I don't know why it waits until the hallway to stop you leaving.

Now, let's go meet 'em.

Or, uh, stop dead.

Zell stops the action at this point to give Rinoa Squall's ring.

: I got it from Squall. Like I said, I'll make you one just like it. 'Til then, hold on to it for me, will ya?

I guess that's why he wanted it.

: What did you say to him?
: I just told him to hand it over.

Stop trying to sound cool, Zell.

Rinoa puts the ring on, then takes a moment to admire it on her hand.

: It looks cool, but it's too big.

Irvine has a point. We've got more pressing matters to attend to.

As soon as we emerge into the open area, Galbadia Garden goes in to ram us.

This shakes the place up a bit.

And there are some small ground-related problems.

Zell manages to jump away.

Rinoa, uh...

It's not lookin' great for Ms. Heartilly at the moment.


She's probably regretting that decision to fight right now.

Oh yeah?

: Let's find something to pull her up!

Yeah, that's probably a good idea!


I don't think she's about to go anywhere, Zell.

...Nobody has ever been as fired as these two are right now.