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I played so much FF7 this weekend, but I don't actually have much to say. This entry goes up to the defeat of Diamond Weapon. Screencaps are from Caves of Narshe.

Icicle Inn

We head north on Sephiroth's tail and stop over at the snowy town of Icicle Inn, where Aerith was born. The only interesting thing about this town is Professor Gast's videos of Ifalna, which reveal how Hojo had Gast killed so that he could take Ifalna and Aerith. Eventually, Elena arrives, pissed that Tseng was injured and convinced it was our fault. I failed to dodge Elena's punch. That was fun. I'm really bad at snowboarding.

Great Glacier

BARRET: ...Seein' a place like this, makes you realize how awesome nature is. But, if anyone ever told me to live here, I'd tell them to...you know... I tell you one thing though, if I did have to live here I'd change things around 'n' make it better. I guess the total opposite of this would be...... Midgar. When you think of it that way, Shinra don't seem so bad... Uuuuuurrrrrgh!! What the hell am I sayin'!? The Shinra, not bad!?


See, Barret, you can't really argue with heat and electricity.

Whirlwind Maze



I wonder why you can only leave the Black Materia with either Red XIII or Barret. Did they just not write the scenes for everybody else?

I really hated that last whirlwind thing. I kept getting ganked by the lightning bolt. Ugh.

The party chats with Rufus and Hojo, and we take a visit into fake!Nibelheim. But oh dear!! Sephiroth shows us that Cloud wasn't in Nibelheim five years ago! Cloud is chill and A-OK because he knows it's a trick, but why is Tifa so nervous?



BECAUSE YOU WEREN'T IN NIBELHEIM FIVE YEARS AGO, CLOUD. But that's for later. This game wouldn't reveal its hand all at once.

Then Cloud goes crazy and walks upside-down. There's a scene here where Cloud flies closer to the camera and then far away again. When my sister was little, she didn't understand perspective, so she thought Cloud just got bigger and then smaller. To be far, it wasn't done extremely well.

RUFUS: Whatever I say is too little... too late...... We must evacuate. I want you all to come with me. There is still much more I want to hear.


But doesn't he order their execution after this? I guess we don't know what happened in the week that Tifa was unconscious.

I like how Tifa's flashback reveals that all this weirdness surrounding Cloud extends right up to the point when the game began, that she actually recruited Cloud because there was something weird about him, so that entire time on Disc One, when the player was aware something was a little weird but, for the most part, thought he or she knew Cloud or that he was the reliable protagonist, Tifa was right there keeping an eye on him because he was wrong.

Junon

Oh dang. Meteor is in the sky now, Weapon is rampaging, and I'm being executed. But that's okay because Barret and Tifa are my BroTP for this game, and Cid has reclaimed his AIRSHIP!!!!!!!!!!



That means it's SIDE QUEST TIME.

I tried to go to the Gold Saucer, but it was closed. But I wonder, why is North Corel still so poor if the only entrance to the Gold Saucer is through the town?

Wutai

YUFFIE: You get beaten once, and then that's it? What happened to the mighty Wutai I used to know?


I did both Wutai side quests at this point. I love Yuffie. She's so sassy and spirited, and she may be seeing Wutai's political situation from a childish perspective, especially considering she spent the war pulling pranks on Zack, but she has a point about not laying down just because you've been beaten. After all, before you've recruited her, if you defeat Yuffie in battle, she just gets back up and either threatens you some more or takes your money and runs away before trying again.

RENO: The correct answer was...

RUDE: ...because it's our job.


TURKS TURKS TURKS TURKS. ♥ Cue Turk music.



Both side quests were ridiculously easy because they were designed to be played around the time we head for the Temple of the Ancients. That's why I like the level scaling system in Final Fantasy VIII. Godo still posed a challenge, though.

Mideel



DOCTOR: He is literally miles away from us.


No, he isn't. He is literally like two feet away. Get a dictionary, you old fool.

I love Tifa's dedication to Cloud. Maybe it was just the romance of him being far away and joining (or trying to join) SOLDIER, or maybe it's the heroism he's shown since the start of the game, but at some point, she fell in love with him and is willing to stay beside him even when he is in this state.

I also love Barret so much. I love that he doesn't give a shit that Cloud is the "hero"–nor should he given that Cloud has been shown not to exactly have his shit together. The rest of them are strong and resourceful and shouldn't wait for Cloud to get off his sorry catatonic ass. So he puts Cid in charge, haha. And I love that Cid sleeps through the whole leadership conversation and, when nominated, just says:



Fort Condor

Holy moley, I spent 20000 gil on that Fort Condor campaign. That was probably really unnecessary. Could have used that gil on Sylkis Greens or something.

Mideel

I SURVIVED ULTIMATE WEAPON. Ha-HAH!

I find the gunfire sound effect oddly comforting because it reminds me of Barret.



AGH CLOUD BRAIN. The most memorable part of this game for me because 1) REVELATIONS for both Cloud and Tifa and 2) it's just so damn weird. I love the zoom effect that leads from Cloud!brain into Tifa's room. I also find it really interesting that, despite what they keep saying about having grown up together, Tifa and Cloud weren't childhood friends. Cloud was this pompous loser who secretly wanted to be in Tifa's group, and Tifa never paid him much attention until after he left town. I like that twist on the "childhood friend" trope. It reflects human nature more realistically and contributes to this theme of Cloud having been a loser.

In fact, an inherent part of the story is that Cloud was a weak loser. If he hadn't been, the Jenova cells wouldn't have affected him, and he wouldn't be as central a part of this story. He would probably have died with Zack, or maybe both of them would have survived and stopped Hojo and Sephiroth ahead of time. If he weren't a loser, maybe he wouldn't have been so inspired by Sephiroth and tried so hard to join SOLDIER in the first place. But because he is weak, he sets off on this journey that ends of breaking down everything he knows about who he is and forces him to recreate himself and become a hero.

DAMN, BOY. DAMN.

Another interesting thing: Zack is barely mentioned in the Nibelheim story and now he has his own game.



He sure is! BUT THERE AIN'T NO GETTIN' OFFA THIS TRAIN WE ON.



I like to think that's Barret misquoting himself.

Underwater Reactor



Rocket Town

I feel a little bad for giving the Turks a bad name, but they should know not to stand against me.

CID: I don't give a rat's ass whether it's science or magical power. No, I guess if I had to choose, I'd rather put my money on the power of science. Humans who used to only roam around on the ground are able to fly now! And finally, we're about to go into outer space. Science is a "Power" created and developed by humans. And science just might be what saves this planet. I was able to earn my living thanks to science. So to me, there's nothing greater! Now quit your worrying 'bout what Shinra's gonna do! I don't want to regret not having done something later.


CID CID CID CID CID. CID'S SCIENCE SPEECH IS THE BEST SPEECH. HUMAN RACE, FUCK YEAH.

CLOUD: ...this is the end?

CID: Huh? What the hell're you sayin'? You're still young, and you give up that easily? I'm not gonna crash into Meteor. Just watch.


I LOVE YOU CID.



SHERA, YOUR PRESENCE MAY HAVE SAVED CID'S LIFE, BUT WHY ARE YOU SO STUPID.

OMG CID HAS ANOTHER EPIC SPEECH WHAT WHAT

CLOUD: I've... been thinking too. About the universe... planet... ocean. How wide and big... No matter where I go and what I do it won't change a thing.

CID: Maybe you're right. But I came up with something different. I always thought this planet was so huge. But lookin' at it from space, I realized it's so small. We're just floatin' in the dark. ......kind of makes you feel powerless. On top of that it's got Sephiroth festerin' inside it like a sickness. That's why I say this planet's still a kid. A little kid sick and trembling in the middle of this huge universe. Someone's gotta protect it. Ya follow me? That someone is us.


It's really sad when they all talk about Aerith. D; I feel like Tifa understands Aerith more than Cloud does, saying that she didn't want to die for the Planet and had all these plans for the future. Cid wanted to give her a ride in his airship. She used to pet Red XIII's nose. Elmyra cried with Cait Sith (Reeve) told her that Aerith had died. I neglected to talk to Yuffie. >____________>

Time to go to the Northern Crater to face Sephiroth. But I'm only on Disc Two! What will transpire from here?

THEN CAIT SITH CHEWS BARRET OUT OVER BOMBING THE REACTORS. YOU TELL 'IM, CAIT SITH.
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September 2016

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