Ultima Final Fantasy | The Ultimate Final Fantasy Podcast

This week, the guys review The Lifestream's presentation of On the Way to a Smile: Case of Yuffie. We discuss the storyline present, which is thus far the most interesting in the On the Way to a Smile series, as it deals with the Geostigma. We see the disease unfold, and talk about Wutai doing the right thing with quarantining the individuals who are sick. We then reevaluate the scene under the Highwind at the end of Disc 2 of Final Fantasy VII. Enjoy the Grind!

Direct download: UFF_136_EpisodeYuffie_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

It is complete! Join Kaleb and Joe as they discuss the ins and outs of Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings. They discuss the games story, unique gameplay, straight outta Final Fantasy XII soundtrack, and the games overall legacy. And, of course, second opinions. Enjoy the grind!

Direct download: UFF_135_Revenant_Wings_Redo_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Kaleb and Joe bring you a very special reading of the Final Fantasy XV Prologue Parting Ways. Join them for all the epic moments that we didn't see, as we find out what the Final Fantasy XV crew was up to during the events of Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV. Enjoy the grind!

 

Parting Ways:  http://cdn.sqexeu.com/files/ff15/main_site/public/novella/FFXV_Novel_ENG.pdf

Direct download: UFF_134_FXVPrologue_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Joe and Kaleb meet up with some fans of Final Fantasy at the Provo GameStop on release night. They interview fellow Final Fantasy fans about their interest in the series, and in Final Fantasy XV as a whole. They also dive into how underwhelming the midnight release was, and attribute much of it to the growing popularity of digital downloads. Kaleb Craig and a few other listeners then weigh in on their experience thus far in Final Fantasy XV. Enjoy the grind, and thanks again Troy!

Direct download: UFF_133_FFXVMidnightRelease_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

It's that time again! Our monthly dive into Final Fantasy Unlimited is here. Enjoy the anime grind!

Direct download: FFU_Commentary_12_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Joe and Kaleb discuss the plethora of Final Fantasy XV news and information. We discuss the day one patch, the interesting Amazon marketing plan, and the new trailer. We dive into our forums, where we theorize on the potential sales for Final Fantasy XV, discuss the recent Clueless Gamer segment, and even the oddities of filling notebooks full of Final Fantasy information. Thanks for listening, guys, and enjoy the grind.

Direct download: UFF_132_Justonemoreday_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we do a sendoff worthy of the MMORPG Final Fantasy XI. We bring on Aniero, Juxta, Nika, and Eskalia to discuss the ups and downs of the long running online role playing game. We laugh, we cry, we discuss things not even remotely connected. But most of all, we reminisce. We talk about how the game used to be compared to how it is now. We discuss our favorite expansions in Final Fantasy XI, and round things off with a slight twist to our Pin-Up Girl challenge. Enjoy the episode!

REMIXES:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s-TsPM9qwIs&index=29&list=PLA27D493141877186

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LTY3jO_98GI&list=PLA02E4F422FB9EF7F

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwylUtqA19o&index=9&list=PLA27D493141877186

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F2szjbY44Kg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qSUufDLAX8o

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HtI4XE7Pwr0

Direct download: UFF_131_FF11_goodbye_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we discuss the early days of our favorite game publisher/developer Square! And Enix. Enjoy!!

The History of Square-Enix - Part VII:

Game-Making Machine

7

Last time we talked about how Square Co. become an almost exclusive Playstation game publishing company. By 1998 they had a multi-game publishing deal with Sony, and with the success of Final Fantasy VII things were looking up for the now very profitable gaming company.

Enix, although keep in mind they were a publishing-only company and made no games in-house, weren’t nearly as successful in the mid-to-late 90’s as Square Co. was. However, games weren’t the only thing Enix was selling.

Since 1991, likely due to Enix’s relationship with Akira Toriyama (the artist behind Dragon Quest and Dragon Ball), Enix began publishing a weekly Manga magazine to compete with Shonen Magazine, Shonen Jump, and Shonen Sunday. Enix’s magazine would be called “Monthly Shonen Gangan” (by the way, “shonen” means a type of magazine aimed at young men and boys). It was so successful that they published another fantasy-only magazine in 1993 called “Monthly GFantasy”. Both of these monthly Manga Publications have been selling successfully all the way up to now around Japan. You may recognize some of these names: Fullmetal Alchemist, Soul Eater, Star Ocean and other spin-off manga has been published through these magazines for series later including Final Fantasy and Kingdom Hearts.

In 1991 Enix also and a couple of other gaming companies in Japan helped fund the Digital Entertainment Academy Co., which is a school for game development.

Speaking of games… The first game Enix published for the Playstation? “Bust a Groove” from 1998. It was a rhythm game developed by the now-defunct “Metro Graphics”. It was enough of a success a sequel in 2000 (Bust a Groove 2), and a more obscure third game on the PS2 called “Dance Summit 2001”, which even wikipedia didn’t even know existed.

Following up the successful “Star Ocean” from 1996, Enix released “Star Ocean: The Second Story”, which was the first in the sci-fi/fantasy series released outside of Japan, and proved to be a pretty successful game with 1.09 Million copies sold worldwide.

Although we listed the games on a previous episode, I’ll reiterate once again that Enix did experiment with publishing a couple games on both the N64 and the Sega Saturn, but middling sales from both of those systems is what probably led Enix to publish exclusively on the playstation after 1996.

Square Co. during this era was pumping out games like crazy in comparison to Enix. Although it didn’t make the game, Square did publish the famous, and ahead-of-its-time, fighting game called Bushido Blade in 1997, created by “Light Weight” Studios (to be fair, they would also end up making the Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon game which is neither famous or any good). Bushido Blade would be considered one of the greatest games of all time by many publications, and sell moderately well for a 1997 title with 388,000 copies sold in Japan.

Also in 1997, Square Co. would re-release Final Fantasy IV on the Playstation, release 2 games that I couldn’t find any info on, “Power Stakes” and “Digical League”, and publish the sequel to their first Playstation game, Tobal 2.

...And then they decided to shake up the Final Fantasy series with “Final Fantasy Tactics”. Written and Directed by Yasumi Matsuno (the director who stepped down in the middle of FF12), with gameplay designed by Hiroyuki Ito (we have an episode on him btw), Tactics would be one of the strangest departures from the Final Fantasy series, yet one of the most successful and beloved with over 2.4 million copies worldwide, almost all of which went to snobby hipsters who keep reminding people that FF7 is not the best FF game, but their super-rare-totally-not-Final-Fantasy Final Fantasy is.

I kid, I’ve never played it, so I don’t know yet.

Square would continue 1997 with another addition to the Saga series with “Saga Frontier”, a moderate critical success that sold just over a million copies. A very critically successful sequel to “Front Mission”, “Front Mission 2” would sell a moderate 500,000 copies and be considered one of the best Playstation games. And you’ll forgive me for rushing through the rest of 1997, where we had an “International Version” of FF7 (whatever that means), a little-known game called “Power Stakes Grade 1”, the disappointingly unsuccessful side-scroller 16 bit-like retro-shooter “Einhander”, the forgetful “Front Mission Alternative”, and “Chocobo no Fushigi na Dungeon”, which no, we’re not playing.

Final Fantasy VII must have lit a fire under Square’s ass or something, because they would make and publish even more games in 1998, many of which are classics. They would start the year mildly, publishing a little game called “Super Live Stadium”, but would make gaming history in February with the release of “Xenogears”.

Praised for its complex psychological plot, and interesting use of anime-style artwork, Xenogears was actually one of the early pitches for the plot for Final Fantasy VII and eventually became it’s own game. It sold over 1 million copies and fans have begged for a sequel ever since.

Not to be missed, “Bushido Blade 2” would follow, along with a Playstation port of FF5 in Japan, the unknown-to-wikipedia games “Hai-Shin 2” and “Power Stakes 2”. Now here comes another mega-game…

...Based on the popular horror book (gotta be one of the first games based on a popular modern book, right?), the survival-horror RPG game “Parasite Eve” would make quite the splash as a serious and cinematic game, praised for its storytelling, and selling almost 2 Million copies to date.

Not all things can be hits though, the critically-panned Sokaigi would follow, as well as some other not-too-noteworthy games like FF7’s Windows port, Brave Fencer Musashi (forgotten, but it sold ok), “Another Mind”, which is supposed to be really bizzarre game with still photos of actors and shit in a horror game…., yeah…., “Ehrgeize”, the apparently mediocre fighting game which is most notable for its inclusion of FF7 characters, “Chocobo Dungeon 2”, and “iS - Internal Section” which is a “tube shooter” game, like space invaders.

With the classics released in 1997 and 1998, Enix was doing pretty wall, but Square Co. was creating a fucking lagacy. And that legacy would only become more solidified in February 1999 with Final Fantasy VIII.

 

THE REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xoPLHBhCRqQ

Direct download: History_of_Square_Enix_Part_7_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Kaleb, Joe, and other Kaleb discuss another of the On the Way to a Smile mini episodes. This episode was brought to us by our friends over at thelifestream.net and we encourage each of you to check them out. We also discuss our situation in Final Fantasy XII: Revenant Wings, and Kaleb reveals that his difficulty with the game was due to him being too much of a Kant. Enjoy the grind!

Episode Barrett: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_bmzGIdRQWU

Direct download: UFF_129_EpisodeBarr_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

We've done it! Final Fantasy XI is over, and we have three small scenarios to talk about. Special thank you to Mog's Mixtape for the remix!

Shantoto Ascension

SHantotto starts beign up to no good and trys to open up a new dimension as an experiment, but she makes a mistake in her calculations and a giant explosion goes off.

Enter Domina Shantotto. She's like the evil half of shantotto, who brings along Tarutaru clones to take over Vanadiel.

Forming a new Shantotto empire, Nooborious is sent on a quest to power up 6 protocrystals accross the land. After the quest he's sent to assassinate Aldo. After a fight with Aldo, Nooborious explains the situation and Aldo gets to work.

They find out Shantotto is being held in Ro'Mave, and when they reach her find her to be an unusually kind Shantotto. Appearently in the accident Shantotto was split in two. One being the nice shantotto and the other being Domina.

Much like Agent Smith, Domina Shantotto's next move is to make everyone in Vanadiel her clone. Even after Nooborious defeats her, she lets out the curse. What happens then makes little sense, but the real Shantotto comes back after going to an alternate Vanadiel, and the two become huge Kaiju Shantottos and have an epic fight, which results in the real Shantotto lifting the curse.

 

A Moogle Kupo D'etat

The adventurer's moogle (the one in Nooborious's Moogle house) runs into some moogle mafia troubles when he's informed that he's been kicked out of the Mog House Management Union. Following an investigation, Mog gets trapped in a rent-a-room in Jueno, and Nooborious has to get ingredients together to give to Shantotto in order to free him.

Dom Kupeliaure, the Moogle "Union" boss, informs Moogle that he has to pay a large fee. Desperate, Mog asks Nooborious to find his "secret savings". But even that turns out not to be enough money, due to some bullshit interrest.

It gets even worse when they kidnap his girlfreind for ransom (which makes Moogle loose his property to goblins), and when a cat burgler, Nanaa Mihgo, is sent to "teach him a lesson", Nooborious has to swoop in to protect him.

Moogle at last is once again decieved when he is invited to Castle Zvahl to be taken care of. It turns out another Moogle named Riko is in on a scheme with Dom to bulldose the moogle properties to make way for luxury apartments. Nooborious fights his way through the entanglement, defeating Riko and his henchmen, and knocking an evil gem from Dom's belly that was appearently making him do bad things.

Moogle goes home, and all is well.

 

A Crystaline Prophecy

When a giant Crystal randomly appears in the sky over Vanadiel everyone begins to hear the song of legend. When is subsequently dissapears though, only Aldo, Verena, and Nooborious have any rememberence of the event at all.

Suddenly a young boy named aldo (yes, the same name as the other aldo) freezes time and informs Nooborious that the crystal has chosen him for something, and Nooborious then sets off to gather a bunch of shit to the crystal at Quifim island.

It turns out that the Crystal is really there to destroy the world with its song and is growing more and more powerful. The real Aldo, Big Aldo finds out that there's a counter-verse that can be sung (still don't know if figurative or litteral), that can make the crystal lose its power.

Fucking with the will of the crystal pissess off some orthodox Mandragoras, and you have to fight them off.

So it turns out that Young Aldo is the son of Big Aldo's sister, Emiline (the girl in the openning video), and Aldo is hell-bent on saving her from the ill-will of the Crystal.

Nooborious and Big Aldo go on a quest to find her, and the siblings are momentarily reunited, but all is not as it seems. Soon Emiline dissapears due to the seed crystal, and Young Aldo informs them that he and his mother were both dreams by Emiline so powerful they that appeared to be real....... Anyway, Nooborious and Aldo have to go up Delfucks tower, gather the necessary Seed Crystal peices, and then stop the Seed Crystal once and for all.

In the end it turns out that despite the visions of people he witnessed, the real Emiline is alive and will somwhere in Vanadiel, going by the name Mathilde. And that's good enough for him.

 

 

Mog's Mixtape:

Loudr: http://ldr.fm/MxHHW

iTunes: http://apple.co/2dJVm6Y

Spotify: http://spoti.fi/2e85lpw

Google Play: http://bit.ly/2dOvyG0

 

 

 

Direct download: UFF_128_CrystalineProfessybyShantottoofakupodeita_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Join us for another sexual episode of Final Fantasy Unlimited. Will the chocobo horde stomp the life out of our friends? Will the Magun thaw? Find out!

Direct download: Commentary_FFU_Ep11_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This time, we review the newest of the Final Fantasy XV films; Kingsglaive Final Fantasy XV.

Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV

 

 

Development History

 

Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV is a 2016 computer animated fantasy anime film directed by Takeshi Nozue, written by Takashi Hasegawa, and produced by good ole Hajime Tabata. The film was developed by Visual Works, Square Enix’s CGI studio. The film is obviously connected to the Fabula Nova Crystallis subseries, and is meant to get everyone ready for Final Fantasy XV. Kingsglaive was created as part of the multimedia rollout of Final Fantasy XV. The film began production in 2014 by the same team that brought us Advent Children. Kingsglaive uses discarded stuff from the original story, while creating a separate experience and plot. Square Enix brought in multiple external studios into complete the project in time.

 

Plot/Setting

 

The story takes place on the world of Eos. This planet is divided into multiple nations that each once held magical crystals. Sound familiar?! The kingdom of Lucis is currently the only nation that still has a crystal. They use it to defend themselves via a gigantic magic barrier. The crystal holds special powers, ie magic, and is only accessible through the Ring of the Lucii, which is passed down from monarch to monarch. Recently, the militaristic empire of Niflheim has been conquering nearby nations, and is currently at war with Lucis. Lucis is protected by the Kingsglaive, an elite unit that uses the royal family’s magic powers. Kingsglaive starts out with King Regis accepting terms of peace from Niflheam. Regis must cede the territories around the crown city Insomnia to Niflheim, and marry prince Noctis to Lunafreya, the former princess of Tenebrae. Another place that we have no context of… lol.

 

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dsPNQQQSVKc

Direct download: Kingsglaive_Final_Fantasy_XV_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Joe teaches us about Genji. Who was this man, and what is his significance in the series? We also discuss the recently announced Stormblood expansion to Final Fantasy XIV. We discuss our thoughts on the trailer, and discuss what a Red mage would do in the game. We also discuss a little about our upcoming games, and announce that we have stopped the Shantottification. Enjoy the Grind!

Direct download: UFF_126_Genji_Equipment_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

We've done it! We finished Rhapsodies of Vana'diel, and will be putting FF XI behind us..... Or will we?!?!?!!? Find out soon!

Rhapsodies of Vana’diel

Rhapsodies of Vana’diel is the final expansion/add on for Final Fantasy XI. It was released in thirds: part one in May 2015, part two in August 2015, and part three in November of 2015. The game was designed by producer Akihko Matsui, and the extremely memorable final themesong was composed by longtime FFXI mixmaster Naoshi Mizuta. Rhapsodies was meant to be a sending off for Final Fantasy XI, as well as a big thank you to players for their years of service within the game.

 

Story

Rhapsodies begins with our heroine, Iroha, visiting the great crystal and voicing her need to visit Reisenjima to warn her master… We then meet up with captain Gilgamesh, who claims that he found a woman on a rowboat who cried out Elhusk. Since, at this point, Elhusk was in a relationship with Lion, he had no choice but to investigate. This is where we formally meet Iroha, who claims to be our future scullion or something, and wants to stop the Emptiness from consuming Vana’diel. Iroha dissolves, and the Reisen Shrine orb we’re holding brings us to the mothercrystals Holla, Dem, and Mea.

A vortex appears, and a monster with it, in Quifim Island. We impale the beast, and enter the vortex. And then we see him. The masked man…. Dun Dun DUNNN!!! We enter an alternate Zi’Tah where the Emptiness totally won, and swallowed life. Lions spirit takes form, and she adds herself to the Reisen Shrine orb. Once the shadow lord is defeated in the original storyline, we are able to go through Reisenjima’s gates.

About a year later, when we finally jumped back into the game, we meet up with the man in the mask, who has Siren fight Elhusk. Elhusk, being the stout warrior that he is, defeats siren while barely taking damage. Siren is released from the masked man’s thrall, and let’s us know that Iroha will reappear again. Then we have a bit of a world tour, getting Tenzen and Prishe to add their powers to the Reisen Shrine Orb. We then move to visit another past girlfriend, Nashmeria, who informs us of the masked man using power from the future to open these portals. The masked man breaks into the Walahra temple, and tries to siphon the Astral Candescence’s power, but is stopped. We head to the Alzadaal Undersea Ruins.

Phoenix reaches out to Alexander, requesting some of his power to help sustain Iroha’s existence. He obliges, and we then head to meet up with Cait Sith, who confirms that the future we saw earlier where the emptiness had consumed everything wasn’t a forbidden one, thus Atomos cannot consume it. Cait Sith then suggests we get in touch with Altana to protect Iroha.

We then meet up with yet another past sweetheart, Lilisette. She heard that Elhusk had become a god, so she adds her light to the Reisen Shrine orb, and vows to find a way to contact Altana. The masked man stole away Atomos’ power, and took off. We then meet up with Iroha, who is a complete BEAST now, by the way. Iroha claims that Siren and herself are abominations to the world. We of course reassure her that she’s the bomb, but she never listens. We then train, and head to Ugilappeh to speak to Grav’iton Berrisaci, who informs us that we must pass through a mothercrystal to cross into the realm of the gods. We then meet up with Selh’teus and some baddies, who are trapped in the crystal.

Siren shows up again, and helps Iroha, and Siren Prime, try to banish all who do not belong. Tenzen stops the show, since he doesn’t want Iroha to leave. She’s pretty mad about this, but whatever. We meet up with Dr Shantotto, who gives us Koru-Moru’s magic doll to point us in the right direction. We head to Escha - Ru’An and encounter our old friend Balamor, who has stolen Selh’teus’s crystal energy, and wants to create a world of his own. He goes super sayan, and we whoop his ass. Selh’teus then reveals his plan to become the new mothercrystal. Then the big reveal: The dark man is Elhusks future dark side, created to fight the darkness, but failed. Elhusk defeats bizarro Elhusk, and sends him off Boromir style.

We then get a sweet vision showing all of those we’ve beaten down. Then we head to the Reisenjima Sanctorum. Reisenjima is revealed to be the site of our last stand, and an ethereal shield is erected to save it from the void. In deciding to gather light, Elhusk creates bizarro Elhusk, who gathers darkness. We then head to Adoulin, seeking Arciela’s advice. Balamor has been travelling many different worlds, but many were swallowed by emptiness. He is pretty stoked on the Reisen Shrine orb, though, and gives us some of himself just to see things unfold. We head to the Hall of the Gods, where it’s revealed that darkness will descend when the five mothercrystals shatter, and rejoining them will bring Paradise, yet end Vana’diel.

Selh’teus then offers Elhusk the power of the crystal in order to become a god. We then fight an ascended form of Promathia, a dragon named Sempurne. Elhusk crushes this scrub, and meets up with bizarrro Elhusk. The time to fight is now. The darkness sends out a ton of those Sin Scale things at the beginning of X, and all of our favorite characters wreck their faces and drive the darkness back for now. Then comes the most frustrating quest in the game…. Panopt hunting…

We are tasked with killing 11 of these fuckers, and being the stalwart hero he is, Elhusk also decided to take on the king of the panopts in a gruelling, twenty minute fight. With the panopts dead, order has been restored to the lifestream, allowing Selh’teus to regain his powers. We then meet up with Altana, who asks Bizarro Elhusk and Elhusk to fight to the death. Bizarro Elhusk is revealed to be Metus, but it’s no matter. Elhusk triumphs. Everyone is super stoked, but then the Cloud of Darkness begins corrupting the mothercrystal. We can’t really destroy the thing though, and the Phoenix Blade leads us to a stone circle in La Theine, where the Gods enter the material plane. We then pack our Reisen Shrine orb with the powers of Alexander, Odin, Ifrit, Shiva, Ramuh, Titan, Garuda, Leviathan, Atomos, Cait Sith, Diabolos, Fenrir, and Bahamut. We head for the Sanctorium for the final fight. All of our previous expansions heroines trust forms are auto summoned fight tooth and nail to stymie the advance of the Claws of Darkness. We then get a fucking ballin cutscene where Iroha is given all the power of the Shrine Orb, and Phoenix is restored to full power. This causes the Cloud of Darkness to manifest in physical form, and now we commence the final fight. Which was a BITCH! Special shoutout to Abbu for helping us out. Elhusk’s body couldn’t survive the clas, and must find respite in the mothercrystal. The only way his light will shine in this world again will be through a chorus of life, crying out through time and space; The Rhapsodies of Vana’diel. Iroha donates her hair to us, which is good since I’m totally losing mine, and disappears once again. Then the final song picks up, and we hear the Rhapsody to rival Queen’s.

 

The Song

The expansion is so very much a thank you to fans, that Mizuta came up with the idea of asking players to contribute to the final song. Indeed, the voices that ring out during the final cutscene of the game are none other than adventurers from Vana’diel! How fucking cool is that?! Square Enix had a page dedicated to fan submissions of “la la la’s”. There is a zip file of the music, a vocal sample, and the music sheet. They requested that users submit the file along with their character name, so they could get the recognition. It was available to active players and unsubscribed ones alike. Unfortunately, the voices of Nooborious and Elhusk are not among those singing the rhapsody.

 

The Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pVZgBk7_jTM

Direct download: UFF_125_rhapsodiesofvanadiel_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we review the second to last expansion to Final Fantasy XI:Seekers of Adoulin. Enjoy!

 

Released March 27th in 2013, Seekers of Adoulin was the last full expansion for FFXI.

 

It featured many new areas in FFXI, all surrounding the Nation of Adoulin and the outlying Ulbuka Territory, and added jobs the jobs Geomancer and Rune Fencer.

 

Gameplay-wise Adoulin added a lot of things such as Colonization, Coalition Assignments, Reives, Skirmish and Delve.

 

The music was written entirely by Naoshi Mizuta, who created 9 new tracks for the expansion.

 

Story

 

The nation of Adoulin, which has been locked off for a long time, opens it doors to adventurers in order to settle the Ulbukan hinterland. On the way to the new nation, Nooborious meets a young woman named Arciela (our new expansion heroine). She tells Noobrious to register as a pioneer with the Pioneers’ Coalition, and the expansion begins.

Talk about the Impermatures and Adoulin Reives.

It turns out Arcelia the sister of the Grand Chancellor of Adoulin and a descendant of the former royal line, which means nothing yet.

 

 

 

The Pioneers' Coalition tells Nooborious to uncover the secrets of the leafkin (a race of leafy beings), and meets with Teodor, a mysterious man clad in black who says that the sword carried by Arciela is the key to meeting the leader of the leafkin (known as the Otharsyne, the sword had been passed down the royal line and represents the will of the Founder King). Teodor explains that after King August (the founder guy) subjugated Ulbuka years ago, he made a promise to never tread upon the land. The Otharsyne it turns out, could allow the king to defy the pact he had made.

In an attempt to borrow the sword, for, you know, stuff…. the Adventurer finds Arciela and she decides to go looking for the leafkin in the Yorcia Weald where they had been seen before. There, they meet Rosulatia (the mega-leafkin) who explains that danger is coming to Ulbuka.

It turns out that the world tree “Yggdrasil” had existed in ancient times on the continent of Rhazowa and that a second tree had been planted by King August in Ulbuka. However, when the Orcish Empire fucked up the world tree in Rhazowa, its connection with the tree in Ulbuka was spoiled.

When Arciela asks how they can help, Rosulatia replies that they should ask the king, and gifts a pome to the Adventurer.

After this, we get some scenes of civil war between the factions that oppose adoulin expansion, and those who are for it. Luckily the group that is about to kill Arcelia is stopped just in time (the fight in the waterways).

During a council meeting, it’s explained by Arcelia that Councelor Ygnas had turned into a leafkin who can no longer communicate with humans (Cid in FF9). However, a pome that the Adventurer receives from Rosulatia allows Ygnas to speak directly into the Adventurer's mind… For reasons, I guess.

 

So they try to cure Ygnas with an Exorsist named Ingrid, but that doesn’t work. Soon Ygnas’s voice fades from Nooborious’s head, but not before Ygnas warns him of terrible things coming to the land.

Suddenly a girl named Nyline comes wandering through the woods as if possessed, and it turns out she had started acting that way after her father gave her a random stone. When she randomly takes off, Noobrious has to find her. She passes out and little fairy things escape from her stone.

Suddenly another girl disappears, Arcelia, who was apparently attacked by some tiger. Luckily, she’s fine, and the Tiger is actually protecting her. It turns out that a jealous Ingrid (the exorcist) attacked her and used a soul syphon to take her soul. Ingrid flees, but is saved by Nooborious. Embarrassed by her behaviour, Ingrid releases the soul and is quickly forgiven.

 

 

 

Days later, after a few more people disappear in the woods, Arcelia tells Nooborious that she believes that they should go to the summit of Mt. Kamihr to talk to a dragon there.

 

The dragon’s name is Sajj’aka, who explains that seals on the pass are beginning to awaken, and that “Hades” will return.

 

Our heroes try to get a new world tree sapling to plant in the labyrinth that holds Hades, and after some annoying quests with some dragon scales and the search for Leafallia, the tree is successfully planted.

 

After some more chaos in Adoulin, with a major leader who went missing now dead, the Rala Waterways are disrupted and the seal to King August’s grave was destroyed.

 

Unfortunately this guarantees two things. First, Hades will return. And Second, this fucking asshole Balamore (who seems like Hades right-hand-man) shows up like a more twisted Kefka, who you fight to get information about Hades from.

 

 

 

So the monsters have increased (FF1), noxious gasses are seeping out of the forests, and now our heroes must go to the depths of Adoulin to stop Hades.

 

Teodore, who came from Hades’s world challenges Noobriousious to a fight, looses, and reveals that Hades and him came from another world where Hades was able to use his lust for power to basically become a god, before being sealed in Adoulin.

 

After a fight with some crazy people popping in and out of different dimensions, our heroes defeat Hades, and Arcelia takes the throne of Adoulin.

 

Legacy

 

Since seekers of Adoulin, FInal Fantasy XI began experiencing some serious nerfing, which was meant to get in new players for the game, and allowed it to compete more with casual MMORPGs such as World of Warcraft. Unfortunately, this had the unintended consequence of making people who were especially fond of the challenge aspect of 11 leave the game and complain to us about the changes to the game on Twitch.

 

For a few years, players thought that Seekers would be the final expansion, but a partial expansion, one that concludes the FF11 saga would soon come in the form of Rhapsodies of Vanadiel.

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJiKGP9HYHQ&index=2&list=PL9e0-I9ArbZAV-vvdK-KFN2-Q5zgIGrLV

Direct download: UFF_124_Adoulin_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

It's time to continue the Final Fantasy Unlimited grind. Pop in that treasured DVD, and enjoy our thoughts.

Direct download: UFF_Unlimited_Commentary10_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we review the Brotherhood: Final Fantasy XV anime. We dive into the content that we liked, and discuss whether or not it served its purpose; making us excited for Final Fantasy XV. Also, we finally watched Kingsglaive! Look forward to that review soon!

Brotherhood Final Fantasy XV

 

Brotherhood is a web based animation series directed by Soichi Masui and written by Yuniko Ayana. The series was co-produced by A-1 Pictures, and obviously Square Enix. A-1 also helped Square Enix with the On the Way to a Smile animated film. The setting and story are based on the upcoming Final Fantasy XV, which is still connected to the Fabula Nova Crystallis subseries. The series documents events and details of the main characters of Final Fantasy XV, and was originally announced during Uncovered: Final Fantasy XV on March 30th 2016.

We all know that Brotherhood, combined with Kingsglaive, is part of a multimedia rollout of Final Fantasy XV. They chose this format because they didn’t feel like creating additional games to cover the added story content. They ended up going with the anime format due to Kingsglaive already in the works.

 

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W62-fDnmcU4

Direct download: UFF_123_BrotherhoodFFXV_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we discuss Square's deal with Sony for Final Fantasy VII. We dive into a bunch of trailers that have come out in the last few weeks for games such as World of Final Fantasy. We also bring back the epic corrections segment, and get called out for our shit. Enjoy the episode grind!

 

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eG-TXvKiFR0&list=PL73C9BE05FD4A1F7C

Direct download: UFF_122_Histofsqrenixpart6_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we put everything on the line. We pit the main men from the Final Fantasy series together for the Ultimate show down. Join us as we question our very own sexuality in this Final Fantasy extravaganza episode. You may be surprised by the winner.

Direct download: UFF_121_pinupmen_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we discuss the most recent two episodes of Brotherhood Final Fantasy XV. We discuss elements of the anime that we enjoyed, and parts that didn't really work for us. We also discuss the slew of news within the Final Fantasy world, and talk about the new DLC for Final Fantasy XV. We also discover that Final Fantasy XV will take place over a ten year period of time; much like the time it's taken to be released.

We top things off by revealing the winner of our extra copy of Final Fantasy Tactics Advanced 2. Congratulations to Banedrom for being a mere 8% off on his prediction for Kingsglaive's Rotten Tomatoes score!

 

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4kJrVQwnB2U

Direct download: UFF_120_Gladdygetsabrandnewlook_mixdown1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Join us for our review of Wings of the Goddess!

Final Fantasy XI: Wings of the Goddess

 

Development History-

Wings of the Goddess is the fourth expansion for Final Fantasy XI. It was released for the PlayStation 2 on November 20, 2007 in the US and Canada, and on the 22nd of November in Japan. The PC release would follow just one day afterwards. This expansions main mission content was released via a series of patches, and it was just over three years after it’s release that the final missions were released. The expansion featured the addition of two new classes; the dancer, and scholar. Neither of which were used by Joe or I. All of the tracks present in WOTG were composed and arranged by Naoshi Mizuta.

Plot-

The story begins upon examining one of the Cavernous Maws located around Vana’diel. These objects greatly resemble Atomos from FFVI. The maw engulfs the character, and sends us back in time. We’re only about 20 years in the past, which puts us right in the middle of the great Crystal War. (See beginning cutscene) The game begins similarly to the original nation missions, where you choose to align yourself with one of the three main missions. Joe and I decided to go with Bastok. Surprise surprise…. We then start helping to prepare for the Crystal War.

 

Each expansion of Final Fantasy XI has featured a female npc protagonist. It started out with Lion, moved on to Prishe, Nashmeria, and now the energetic dancer Lilisette. Lilisette is the daughter of Sir Ragelise, the captain of the Knights of the Ironcrest Hawk, and is ordered to take back the La Vaule area from the Orcs. We meet up with Lilisette when she tries to capture another of our recently acquired comrades named Cait Sith. Cait Sith reveals herself as the tears of Altana, and informs the player that the cavernous maws are tiny versions of Atomos, who is attempting to devour everything from the peaceful timeline that we knew before entering the expansion.

 

As if two different times weren’t enough, there’s a third… Altana reveals to us that our hero, Elhusk, and Lilisette are the Wings of the Goddess. She has chosen us to do her bidding, and prevent a future brought on by Ultemaci… I mean, Queen Lilith. All the while, Atomos is stubbornly devouring all things visible. We also get a bunch of cutscenes regarding the Shadow Lord. He punishes the hell out of his enemies.

 

Lillisette and her mother, Portia, end up getting captured by Lilith, but of course, we break them out. Before we confront the evil wench Lilith, we first run into our Bastok specific questline. This questline features the Crystal War from Bastok’s view. There’s plenty of betrayal, subterfuge, and even an assasination via tonberry. We also learn some very interesting facts about Zeid’s past….

 

Another interesting aspect of this expansion is Mayakov. Mayakov is the flamboyant, lisp happy leader of the dancing troupe that Lilisette is a part of. Not much else can be said about Mayakov, but man. He’s definitely gay.

 

The party then confronts Lilith at Castle Zvahl, otherwise known as Ultemacia’s Castle. Upon reaching her chamber, Lilisette disappears! Atomos has finally consumed the timeline where she existed, and she is no more. We then embark on a super long quest to obtain memory fragments. This quest was probably my favorite part about this expansion. I am literally obtaining fragments of memories, and combining them to remanifest the existence of a character. Fucking epic. Once we find all of the fragments, we bring Lilith back into existence, and go on to fight Lilith and her goons.

We then discover the true identity of Lilith, but won’t reveal it on this show. Atomos stops devouring everything like a fat fuck. Everything is golden.

 

Now, what kind of Final Fantasy would this be without a wedding scene! We then witness the wedding of Portia and Sir Ragelise, and the expansion comes to a close.



*Additional Points*

 

-Atomos v. Lilisette fight where we both died, but Lilisette rocked him

-That fucking quest where I had to run around to all of the agents, and blow up the mine shafts.

-Zeid is a complete badass

-Volker is Solid Snake

 

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aDm1QVTtfMY&list=PL71ACEB758381588B&index=21

Direct download: UFF_119_Wingsofthegoddess_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we invite Troy Cavanaugh on for a very special Patreon episode. We discuss his history with the series, and are even graced with a new version of Stump The Host with an excellent reward. We also discuss the recent delay of Final Fantasy XV, and touch base on the current Rotten Tomatoes score for Kingsglaive. Enjoy the grind!

 

Special Request Mixes:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CWe005HIn6I

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9MKszlA4kJA

Direct download: UFF_TroyCavernaugh_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

It's time! We review Treasures of Aht Urghan, the third expansion for Final Fantasy XI. We discuss the story arc, and review the pro's and con's of this expansion to Final Fantasy XI. We dive into the comedic dialogue from Naja Salaheem, and delve into the intense rivalry present between Odin and Alexander. Enjoy the review!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p1K625Zqmsk&index=3&list=PLD653DEA255C991A7

 

Direct download: UFF_117_TreasuresofAufuckitimnotgonnaspellit_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Kaleb and Joe discuss the storyline in Chains of Promathia. We're currently about halfway through The Treasures of Aht Urghan.

Chains of Promathia

 

Final Fantasy XI: Chains of Promathia was released on September 16th, 2004 in Japan, and September 21st, 2004 everywhere else. This is the only expansion thus far that didn’t include new jobs. Just like with Rise of the Zilart, the games main composer and arranger is Naoshi Mizuta. We also get a return of XI’s Distant Worlds, featureing Izumi Masuda.

 

Story-

The story starts out in Delkfutt’s Tower, with a bunch of Jeunoan scientists getting blasted by an explosion, due to a reversal of the energy flow to the crystal. The Ducal guard rush to the scene, and encounter a boy, who they take back to Jeuno. When we visit the kid, he gives us an amulet.

 

We skip a bit ahead, where Bahamut emerges from the water, giving us a warning that the Keeper of the Apocalypse is near. We then adventure to the three crags, Holla, Mea, and Dem, and are drawn into Promyvion. We defeat the enemies in this area, and come to the MotherCrystal. It is here that we run into Nag’molada, a Juenian diplomat. He attempts to slay the adventurer, to keep the crystal safe, but is stopped by the mysterious boy from earlier. When we reach a later crag, Nag’molada reveals that the boy has released Emptiness, a destructive force, on the crystal.

 

Once we defeat the Empty at the mothercrystal, we travel to the Tavnazian Archipelago for the first time. When we’re unconscious, a group of Tarutaru’s, the Chebukki Siblings, steal our amulet to take to the leader of Tavnazia, Prishe.

 

Prishe returns to town with her friend Ulmia after checking the area out. She informs the party of monsters amassing at Cape Riverne. Prishe returns our amulet, which is oddly identical to hers. Prise then wants to confront Bahamut in Cape Riverne for answers, and finds out that Nag’molada and the Chebukki triplets are already there. We run into Nag’molada singing an ancient song to Bahamut, proving that he is a Kuluu. Bahamut decides to honor the ancient pact made with the Kuluu ages prior. Bahamut is subdued by Esha’ntarl, a Zilart, subdues Bahamut in a magic web.

 

We then travel to Jeuno and turn ourselves in. We are wanted for treason, after all… We speak with Esha’ntarl, who by the way is smokin', suspects that the young man from earlier in the game is the Keeper of the Apocalypse, and charges us with capturing him to prove his innocence.

 

We then embark on a comical quest in Windhurst, where the Chebukki triplets are attempting to find their long lost father. Prishe is hospitalized, and given your amulet to stabilize her condition. The boy is spotted in Pso’Xja, and we head there. We then battle Diabolos, and realize we’ve been drawn into a dreamworld. The boy arrives, and rescues Prishe. We also find out that Tenzen, another of our companions, has a blade that houses Phoenix. Phoenix requests help from Diabolos, but instead is offered to stay in the dream world to avoid the shittiness of reality. It should be noted that Phoenix and Diabolos are two of the five terrestrial avatars charged with the protection of Vana’diel. The others are Carbuncle, Fenrir, and Bahamut. The party then seeks out Bahamut again, searching for answers.

 

We meet up with Bahamut, and request his aid. He sends one of his cronies after us, and we kill it. Afterwards, Bahamut tells Phoenix that she’s wasting her time, and that the Emptiness will win. The party recognizes a song that Phoenix starts singing, and Bahamut and his wyrms. We find out that the Emptiness is the will of the Twilight God, Promathia, who cursed mankind for trying to reach Paradise.

 

Prishe then reveals that she had an accident as a child when she came into contact with the baptismal vessel deep below the church, which has stopped her aging. We travel to a statue of Promathia, where he reveals that he desires resurrection, and death.

 

The party heads to Pso’Xja to arrive at the Vazhl mothercrystal. Nag’molada and the boy both appear, and it is revealed that the baptismal vessel is actually the Eye of Altana, used to turn Emptiness into Magicite. The amulet that we were given was once given to the Kuluu by the Zilart to contain the darkness. It also allows you to communicate directly with the mind of another. SHINING!!!!!! We finally get the boys name, although I wish you luck in pronouncing it; Selh’teus. He is the sole survivor of the disaster at Al’Taieu, that destroyed the place thousands of years ago. We wake in Promyvion, and have to rescue Tenzen, Louverance, and Ulmia, who have been captured within the darkness. We meet up with Diabolos and Prishe, and discover that Selh’teus came from Al’Taieu to protect the celestial capital, which wasn’t destroyed, only hidden beyond the fifth mothercrystal. Prishe then resolves to kill The Keeper of the Apocalypse, which will allow Bahamut to not kill everyone.

 

Prishe goes missing for a little bit, and the party splits up to investigate. We meet up with my favorite character of this expansion, a Galka named Jabbos. Jabbos has what I’d imagine is the voice of Christian Bale’s Batman, as he speaks…..and then…..pauses….a…..lot….. He’s been living with Moblins for far too long, and the beastmen have begun to think that they are the children of Promathia. The beasts believe that they are, and continue digging ith this expectation, but Jabbos knows that the Moblins were born long after Promathia had died. They get pissed when they find out, and Jabbos joins up.

 

We then find out that Prishe has a bit o magicite stuck in her chest, which is probably just as uncomfortable as it sounds. She runs off, and  Bahamut is found beyond the sea of clouds, and Cid begins working on an airship that can reach him. Prishe is spotted in Jeuno, and we head to find the little shit.

 

The NPC’s Tenzen, Louverance, Jabbos, and Shirakee Z… ugh… all come to the conclusion that Prishe is the Keeper of the Apocalypse who is intended to awaken the Twilight God, using the power of song.

 

Esha’ntarl reveals that defeating the Keeper of the Apocalypse will only set the darkness free to possess another, and that the only way to break the cycle is to resurrect Promathia, and defeat him in God form in front of the mothercrystal. The party gets on Cid’s airship, and meets up with Prishe and Bahamut. She reasons with Bahamut, and he reveals that she is no longer the Keeper of the Apocalypse, and that the true keeper is in Al’Taieu. Bahamut then reveals a crazy plan to destroy mankind in order to keep Promathia from enveloping everything, and entering Vana’diel. He then attacks us with Megaflare, and is blocked by Tenzen, and his Phoenix blade. We jump ship.

We failed to outright defeat Bahamut, and Phoenix sacrificed herself, making ole Tenzen’s blade normal, and boring. Cid mentions a red light shooting up from the Sea of Shu’Meyo has appeared. He sends us out to get supplies, and studies the Eye of Altana to repair the airship. The airship is hijacked by the Chebukki triplets, and Tenzen. Tenzen was instructed by Phoenix to kill the Adventurer, but obviously gets his ass whooped. We then get teleported to the fifth mothercrystal in Al’Taieu.

 

In Al’Taieu, we are beckoned to the Grand Palace of Hu’Xzoi. We enter, and regain the light of the four other mothercrystals. Selh’teus explains that the Emptiness extracted from the Kuluu had been manifested into Promathia, and had been sealed in the audience chamber. Nag’molada breaks the seal, and frees Promathia. Nag’molada is swallowed in Emptiness, teaching him that all the children of Vana’diel were born from Promathia. The god then attempts to get in.

 

We join Prishe in the Empyreal Paradox, where Selh’teus attempts to slow Promathia down. Then, the epic fight… When Promathia reaches his end, Prishe casts the Star of Tavnazia at him, and we unleash the light of the mother crystals, allowing the tears of Altana to rain down upon us. Promathia is crushed, and returns to the mothercrystal. Emptiness is revealed as the physical manifestation of death itself, and even the god Promathia, would die when faced against it. We again learn about the origins of Vana’diel, and all of it’s races. Everyone goes their separate ways, and Prishe’s magicite melts away, making her mortal once again.

 

The Song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dSt8vifJG38&list=PL85AED8D3D495397D&index=21

Direct download: UFF_116_chainsofpromathia_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Join us for another Final Fantasy Unlimited Commentary. Enjoy!!

Direct download: Commentary_ep9_ffu_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm MST

This week, UFF joins Kaleb Craig for a special discussion episode. This time, we clean up all of the remaining forum questions. This is to make way for our new website at ultimafinalfantasy.geekdomentertainment.com We also take some time to catch up to what Craig has been up to in the Final Fantasy universe, which is about as much as one would expect. Enjoy the catch-up, and join the new forums!

Direct download: UFF_115_QuestionsQuestionsQuestions_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Yessss.... It's time! Join Kaleb and Joe as they recount the story, and their experiences with Final Fantasy XI: Rise of the Zilart! 

ZIlart

Once upon a time, there was an ancient race of people called the Zilart. They wanted to harness the power of the crystals below Vana’Diel to bring about Paradise thousands of years ago... This plan was being cock blocked by the Shadow Lords “”””noise”””””. His defeat has silenced him. We set about investigating this shit.

We meet an old woman, from yet another lost civ, named the Kuluu. The Kuluu were opposed to the Zilart’s plan of Paradise, and destroyed their base. This led to the entire race to be cursed, and turned into freakishly demented renditions of the Tonberry.

THe adventurer then travels the lands in search of 8 fragments of light, scattered around the whole fucking planet in these cermet headstones. The adventurer must then bring them to the island of Zepwell, where the Dawnmaidens, another fucking race of people opposed to the Zilarts, will guide your path.

After obtaining the fragments of light, we arrive at the Chamber of Oracles, where you fight a trio of Antica before meeting up with the Dawnmaidens. They let you in on the fact that the FIve Ark Angels, and all of the races of Vana Diel, were created from crystals. They urge the player to go to Delfucks tower to stop the Zilart princes.

Using Aldo’s sister, Verena, Ealdnarche is able to tap into the Memory of the Ancients stored within, and reactivates Delfucks Tower. Verena is cast aside, and Ealdnarche teleports to Tu Lia. The party returns to Norg, and finds out that the player needs  cerulean crystals to place into the Hall of the Gods. Once these are obtained, we pass through the gates, and arem et by Yve’noile, a Dawnmaiden. She explains that the Zilart divided the power of the crystals into smaller crystals. A meltdown occured, and the energy released led to all living things on Vana’diel. Yve’noile begs us to defeat the Eald’narche and free him from his binds.

Now for the fun part. We head to Ala’Loff Amphitheater in Tu’Lia, and defeat the five Ark Angels. Lion eventually joins up, and invites us on a hot cruise once this shit blows over.

When the player reaches the core of Tu’Lia, Lion, Zeid, and Aldo are already battling Eald’narche, but he crushes their frail bodies. We are offered one last chance at joining him in paradise, which I desparately tried to accept, we attack. Once Eald’narche is defeated by us, he tries to restart the crystal line before it’s completed. This starts a meltdown to destroy everything. This is when Lion casts herself into the core to stop everything. Yve’noile appears, and gets Eald’narch to return to the crystal.

We go tell Gilgamesh about his dead daughter, who apparently was adopted. He seems to shrug it off, and Verena states that she can sense her presence in this world, and doesn’t believe she is dead…...

 

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3TnSMXcp2Hg

Direct download: UFF_114_RiseoftheZilart_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we join hands with the man, the myth, the legend; Krinital. We've owed this guy a Patreon episode for some time now, and our schedules FINALLY align. Join us for all of Krinital's favorites throughout the series, and of course his final rankings for the Final Fantasy series. Enjoy the grind!

Direct download: krinital.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Kaleb and Joe discuss their many adventures within Last Mission. This rogue dungeon crawler was released with the international version of Final Fantasy X-2, and features gameplay unlike any game we've ever seen. We discuss the light amount of story, and the insanely different gameplay present. We top things off with the games design, and touch on the few new musical tracks that the game has to offer. We finish up with the games legacy, and rank it among the rest of the Final Fantasy X saga. Enjoy!

Direct download: UFF_112_X2_Last_Mission_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Join us for the return of the commentaries. This time, we cover Episode 8.

Direct download: Commentary_episode_8_ffu_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Joe and Kaleb discuss the plethora of news that has come out since they did a normal episode. They discuss everything from Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age, to new Final Fantasy XV stuff. Enjoy!

NEWS

 

FFXII:

Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age Nine minutes of gameplay. Heightened visuals, Zodiac Job system. Awesome.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=60&v=rsIyNMenBB4

 

FFVII 2D ride in Dubai opening soon. Road trip?

 

World of Final Fantasy October 25, Sephiroth Summon as a preorder bonus. The game will be over 100 hours without side quests, there will be 200 minigames.

 

FFXV: Still hinging on the super open world game. Not much linearity present. Prompto takes pics, can be shared on Social Media.

FF XV Director answers 16 fan questions at E3:Still going forward with the wait mode option… This completely pauses the gameplay when you’re not pressing anything. Gives you more time to strategize. Players can turn off the HUD to create a more immersive experience. Prompto takes photo’s himself, but you can stop and take your own. There’s a monster-fighting ring in Altissa. There will be an option to grind out levels in order to crush your enemies, but you can also counter high level enemies with skill and prowess in battle. THere will be a t least two control layouts, though they may do a third. 200 hours of gameplay to clear everything. There won’t be a lot of Astrals, or summons, in the game. Chocobo’s will attack on their own..

 

FFXV Preorder and Special editions will come with a slew of extra contenct including extra weapons, colorings, and a Lucis Kingdom Suit for Noctis.

http://gematsu.com/2016/06/final-fantasy-xv-footage-shows-pre-order-special-edition-dlc

 

Well, they added 10,000 more copies of FFXV Ultimate Collectors Edition, but it’s already fucking sold out. So there’s that.

http://www.siliconera.com/2016/05/19/square-enix-adding-10000-copies-final-fantasy-xv-ultimate-collectors-edition-may-23/

 

Square released a day and night cycle located at the Hammerhead Gas station. http://www.siliconera.com/2016/05/20/final-fantasy-xv-shows-hammerhead-day-night-cycle-time-lapse-video/

 

Final Fantasy Disease was infecting members of SE. They couldn’t imagine anything other than their vision for FF. Need to be rooted out, and dealt with accordingly!!!!!

http://kotaku.com/final-fantasy-disease-infected-square-enix-says-ffxv-1778147458

 

FFXV VR Mission with Prompto… Thougths?

 

A Kings Tale Side scroller announced as FF XV Preorder bonus. This game will take pace in a ficticious 30 years before FF XV. Features retro graphics, and fast paced combat.

Final Fantasy Brotherhood Episode 2: Dogged Runner

 

Kingsglaive Character Bios released- http://gematsu.com/2016/05/kingsglaive-final-fantasy-xv-details-protagonist-supporting-characters

 

Final Fantasy VII Monopoly announced. Players will become Shinra-esque, and try to own all the properties. There haven’t been any leaks of the board as of yet.

http://www.siliconera.com/2016/06/29/final-fantasy-vii-monopoly-announced-might-make-feel-like-shinra/

Remixes:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e09rz6FQkuk

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2yqYa2advT0

Direct download: UFF_111_catch-up3_prompto_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This time, we finish up our review of Final Fantasy x-2. We discuss the design, music, and legacy of the game. We also move on to read, and discuss some of our listener reviews, and answer their questions about the game. Enjoy the finale!

FFX-2

 

Final Fantasy X-2 was released for the ps2 on March 13th, 2003 in Japan, on November 18th in america, and February 19th, 2004 in Europe. Later, an HD remaster would come for the Ps3 and finally the Ps4 just last year.

 

It was to be the first ever direct sequel to a main-series final Fantasy game. There was no plans for a sequel, but with the short video called Eternal calm (which was released with a special edition of FFX in Japan) was so well received by fans that they decided to continue X’s story. Although many people in the company were hesitant about doing a sequel to X (especially Kazushige Nojima), Yoshinori Kitase decided that his team was ready for a challenge.

 

Not only was their challenge to do a sequel, but to attempt to make a game centered entirely around female characters. The game was also attempting to go away from the Macho female characters most hollywood action movies star. This created a light-hearted feel for the entire game. A brain-hurting difference from the more somber Final Fantasy X.

 

There was also a purposeful change in theme for the game, FFX was all about gaining independence, while X2 would be about the consequences of independance.

 

The development time for X2 was very short compared to that of most FF games (according to Tetsuya Nomura), taking an estimated year-and-a-half less time than the development of X. This was due to all of the reuse of many character models, it’s not like they had to start from scratch.

 

The music would be composed by Noriko Matsueda and Takahito Eguchi (composers for the much-maligned game “The Bouncer”). The most famous song from the game (one of 2 pop songs) was the ballad “1000 words” sung by sung by Kuni Koda in Japan, and Jade Villalon for the English edition.

 

X2 would go on to sell 1.94 million copies in Japan (the highest selling game of that year) and 1.85 Million in America. It was also well acclaimed (more so in Japan) for it’s departure from the Final Fantasy form, it’s focus on side-quests, it’s political background, and it’s overall uniqueness from anything players had seen before.

 

But I ask you, does unique really mean good?








STORY

 

So… The uh story starts out at a fucking terrible pop concert with the “what can I do for you?” song blaring out of our TV speakers. Someone who looks like Yuna is singing terribly and YRP comes to save...Yuna’s garment grid from a disgusting looking woman named Lablanc.

 

What is a garment grid?

YRP stands for Yuna, Rikku, and a new smoking hot emo chick named “Paine”, and they make up the Gullwings (y’know, not enough nicknames for the group). They are a group of sphere hunters searching the world for rare spheres… and stealing them from people who they think shouldn’t have them.

 

When Yuna finds a sphere with what looks like Tidus on it, she sphere hunts even harder for the missing pieces. Also on the sphere, a dangerous weapon, the vegnagun, is shown to be hidden somewhere in spira. A weapon powerful enough to destroy Spira, apparently.

 

In the midst of all the sphere hunting and the Leblanc Syndicate (functioning like a lame team rocket) attempting to snatch the spheres from under our heroes noses, are the political factions of the Youth league and New Yevon. The Youth league, young ruffian sphere hunters looking to educate the world about the past; New Yevon, holding onto the teachings of the faith that failed them in FFX. THese two fractions never really do any harm to one another or fight for power in any real world sense, but hey, that’s ffx2.

 

With the new threat of Vegnagun, Nooj (leader of the Youth League), sets off to destroy the Vegnagun, but is possessed by Shuyin (the Tidus-looking dude). Chasing after him, Yuna falls into the farplane where the Spirit of Shuyin reunites with whom he thinks is “Lenne”, apparently a famous popstar Shuyin was unable to save with the power of Vegnagun from the Zanarkand he belongs to… 1000 years in the past.

 

A quick aside, who is this shuyin guy and why does he look like Tidus?

(not actually explained in this game, but we can figure it out)

 

The reason Shuyin mistakes Yuna for Lenne is because Yuna is wearing her dress sphere. Soon Yuna begins to relive Lenne’s memories, and eventually uses her singing ability and songwriting skills to bring the people of Spira together for…… a concert.

 

After this, Yuna, The Lablanc syndicate, members of The Youth League, as well as members of New Yevon, team up to finally destroy Vegnagun and the spirit of Shuyin who tries to control it.

 

After all is said and done, Spira is saved, and The Youth League compromises with New Yevon.

 

The end?

 

Taken from neoseeker.com:

 

Good Ending

As Yuna is walking in the flower field in the Farplane, press "X" and Yuna will hear a whistle. She looks around to hear where it's coming from. That little Fayth guy will appear and tell you that he's heard your wish to see Tidus again. He will then ask you if you want to see him again and you have to answer. If you really hate Tidus and answer "I'm fine with the way it is," Yuna will tell the Fayth that she doesn't need to see him because he's in her heart. The Fayth will disappear and you'll just get the Normal Ending.

Assuming that you chose "I want to be with him" the Fayth will tell you that he'll try to bring him back, but there's no promises. Yuna will walk away and you'll see the cut scene for the Normal Ending. After the credits run through, you'll see the scene at the end of FFX where Tidus is in the water. This time, he'll emerge outside Besaid Island. He whistles and swims towards the shore, at which time the Celsius comes roaring in, and Yuna jumps out and embraces Tidus. Yuna asks if he's the real thing to which he answers, "what do you think?" Yuna nods in agreement. Paine and Rikku look on, smiling for their friend from the Celsius. As they're hugging,Wakka shouts out from the shore. Most of the population of the Island is there witnessing their reunion, including Lulu and the new baby Vidina. Yuna and Tidus agree to go meet them and start running towards the shore. Tidus tells Yuna that she's changed. She responds by saying that a lot of things have happened. Tidus yells out that he wants to hear about it. The camera zooms out to a fade.

Explanation? (a guy from reddit)

 

I think it's because the fayth felt indebted to Yuna because she released them from their dreaming at the end of X, and she also saved them at the end of X-2. Because the little boy/Bahamut asks Yuna if she wants to meet someone, and that's how you unlock the "Good" ending. So maybe he and the rest of Yuna's aeon's fayth dreamed up Tidus again? As kind of a thank you and compensation for Yuna's work.

I'm not too sure. This is just my theory of it.

Direct download: UFF_110_FFx2p2_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

We have finally completed Final Fantasy X-2. Here are our thoughts on the game.

FFX-2

 

Final Fantasy X-2 was released for the ps2 on March 13th, 2003 in Japan, on November 18th in america, and February 19th, 2004 in Europe. Later, an HD remaster would come for the Ps3 and finally the Ps4 just last year.

 

It was to be the first ever direct sequel to a main-series final Fantasy game. There was no plans for a sequel, but with the short video called Eternal calm (which was released with a special edition of FFX in Japan) was so well received by fans that they decided to continue X’s story. Although many people in the company were hesitant about doing a sequel to X (especially Kazushige Nojima), Yoshinori Kitase decided that his team was ready for a challenge.

 

Not only was their challenge to do a sequel, but to attempt to make a game centered entirely around female characters. The game was also attempting to go away from the Macho female characters most hollywood action movies star. This created a light-hearted feel for the entire game. A brain-hurting difference from the more somber Final Fantasy X.

 

There was also a purposeful change in theme for the game, FFX was all about gaining independence, while X2 would be about the consequences of independance.

 

The development time for X2 was very short compared to that of most FF games (according to Tetsuya Nomura), taking an estimated year-and-a-half less time than the development of X. This was due to all of the reuse of many character models, it’s not like they had to start from scratch.

 

The music would be composed by Noriko Matsueda and Takahito Eguchi (composers for the much-maligned game “The Bouncer”). The most famous song from the game (one of 2 pop songs) was the ballad “1000 words” sung by sung by Kuni Koda in Japan, and Jade Villalon for the English edition.

 

X2 would go on to sell 1.94 million copies in Japan (the highest selling game of that year) and 1.85 Million in America. It was also well acclaimed (more so in Japan) for it’s departure from the Final Fantasy form, it’s focus on side-quests, it’s political background, and it’s overall uniqueness from anything players had seen before.

 

But I ask you, does unique really mean good?







STORY

 

So… The uh story starts out at a fucking terrible pop concert with the “what can I do for you?” song blaring out of our TV speakers. Someone who looks like Yuna is singing terribly and YRP comes to save...Yuna’s garment grid from a disgusting looking woman named Lablanc.

 

What is a garment grid?

YRP stands for Yuna, Rikku, and a new smoking hot emo chick named “Paine”, and they make up the Gullwings (y’know, not enough nicknames for the group). They are a group of sphere hunters searching the world for rare spheres… and stealing them from people who they think shouldn’t have them.

 

When Yuna finds a sphere with what looks like Tidus on it, she sphere hunts even harder for the missing pieces. Also on the sphere, a dangerous weapon, the vegnagun, is shown to be hidden somewhere in spira. A weapon powerful enough to destroy Spira, apparently.

 

In the midst of all the sphere hunting and the Leblanc Syndicate (functioning like a lame team rocket) attempting to snatch the spheres from under our heroes noses, are the political factions of the Youth league and New Yevon. The Youth league, young ruffian sphere hunters looking to educate the world about the past; New Yevon, holding onto the teachings of the faith that failed them in FFX. THese two fractions never really do any harm to one another or fight for power in any real world sense, but hey, that’s ffx2.

 

With the new threat of Vegnagun, Nooj (leader of the Youth League), sets off to destroy the Vegnagun, but is possessed by Shuyin (the Tidus-looking dude). Chasing after him, Yuna falls into the farplane where the Spirit of Shuyin reunites with whom he thinks is “Lenne”, apparently a famous popstar Shuyin was unable to save with the power of Vegnagun from the Zanarkand he belongs to… 1000 years in the past.

 

A quick aside, who is this shuyin guy and why does he look like Tidus?

(not actually explained in this game, but we can figure it out)

 

The reason Shuyin mistakes Yuna for Lenne is because Yuna is wearing her dress sphere. Soon Yuna begins to relive Lenne’s memories, and eventually uses her singing ability and songwriting skills to bring the people of Spira together for…… a concert.

 

After this, Yuna, The Lablanc syndicate, members of The Youth League, as well as members of New Yevon, team up to finally destroy Vegnagun and the spirit of Shuyin who tries to control it.

 

After all is said and done, Spira is saved, and The Youth League compromises with New Yevon.

 

The end?

 

Taken from neoseeker.com:

 

Good Ending

As Yuna is walking in the flower field in the Farplane, press "X" and Yuna will hear a whistle. She looks around to hear where it's coming from. That little Fayth guy will appear and tell you that he's heard your wish to see Tidus again. He will then ask you if you want to see him again and you have to answer. If you really hate Tidus and answer "I'm fine with the way it is," Yuna will tell the Fayth that she doesn't need to see him because he's in her heart. The Fayth will disappear and you'll just get the Normal Ending.

Assuming that you chose "I want to be with him" the Fayth will tell you that he'll try to bring him back, but there's no promises. Yuna will walk away and you'll see the cut scene for the Normal Ending. After the credits run through, you'll see the scene at the end of FFX where Tidus is in the water. This time, he'll emerge outside Besaid Island. He whistles and swims towards the shore, at which time the Celsius comes roaring in, and Yuna jumps out and embraces Tidus. Yuna asks if he's the real thing to which he answers, "what do you think?" Yuna nods in agreement. Paine and Rikku look on, smiling for their friend from the Celsius. As they're hugging,Wakka shouts out from the shore. Most of the population of the Island is there witnessing their reunion, including Lulu and the new baby Vidina. Yuna and Tidus agree to go meet them and start running towards the shore. Tidus tells Yuna that she's changed. She responds by saying that a lot of things have happened. Tidus yells out that he wants to hear about it. The camera zooms out to a fade.

Explanation? (a guy from reddit)

 

I think it's because the fayth felt indebted to Yuna because she released them from their dreaming at the end of X, and she also saved them at the end of X-2. Because the little boy/Bahamut asks Yuna if she wants to meet someone, and that's how you unlock the "Good" ending. So maybe he and the rest of Yuna's aeon's fayth dreamed up Tidus again? As kind of a thank you and compensation for Yuna's work.

I'm not too sure. This is just my theory of it.

Direct download: UFF_109_FFx2p1_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This special minisode is brought to you by KupoCon! This is the fan event we've all been waiting for. Kaleb will for sure make the event, and we hope many of you are able to join us. We'll see you guys again on Saturday!

 

Check http://kupocon.com/ for up to date news, and tickets. Tickets will go on sale June 21st.

Direct download: KupoCon_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:23pm MST

This time, we talk about the Eternal Calm. This small piece of Final Fantasy lore takes place between Final Fantasy X, and it's sequel Final Fantasy X-2. It shows the transformation of Yuna as a character, and serves as a twenty minute changing of clothes. We also talk FF with one of our longtime Patreon supporters, Kefka Palozza! Enjoy the listen!

Direct download: UFF_108_eternalcalmofkefkapaloza.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we continue with our Spotlight on Nobuo Uematsu. Enjoy!

 

PART II

 

Last week we looked at the beginnings of Nobuo Uematsu’s career, from being hired at Square Co. to his first two masterpieces that we can agree on with his soundtracks of FF4 and FF6. As a reminder, this is a special kind of Spotlight, one where you sit back, and enjoy the music.

 

Let’s continue from 1995. Chrono Trigger, the one fucking game that we need to play but can’t because of the official order of things, was a gigantic project for Square, and is often cited with FF6 as the greatest RPG game ever. Most of the music was composed by veteran composer Yasunori Mitsuda, but Nobuo would leave his mark on the classic game as well, composing 8 of the tracks for the game. Here’s the haunting theme “Silent Light”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9T4WB2zfmps

 

No, no no no. Silent LIGHT. Not Silent night… Jesus.. That was Josef Mohr.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ccv48ZiX1I&index=10&list=PLTHOcnhIuPOvEJd8WJI6kaJbQG0NeKtaY

 

1996 would be kind-of a dud year for Uematsu. The little known game “Dynami Tracer” would be his only solo work in 1996, and it’s definitely not one of his better soundtracks… But we wouldn’t wanna keep you wanting! Here’s a little piece called...music factory.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x-T4JU01UoA&list=PL70567EDAFF96BD39&index=3

 

We’re not gonna even bother with his next work, contributing to the album for Front Mission: Gun Hazard with a half a billion of other Square composers. His next game was 1997’s fucking Final Fantasy 7. We can’t give you just one. Here’s his band, the black mages’ version of perhaps the most popular FF7 song One Winged Angel:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHzEaKFqboI

 

One of the most beautiful pieces from the game, Aerith’s theme, taking a cue from Terra’s theme in the last game, here’s an orchestral version of that song:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NU0TcnsLop8

 

We can’t forget Kaleb’s favorite. This is Cosmo Canyon.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBk58XDx5gY

 

His next game would be that of FInal Fantasy 8. Nobuo has stated that with 8’s soundtrack, he worked hard to reflect the charcter’s emotions at certain parts of the game. It would be one of the more successful FF soundtracks with what is now as of 2016 the second-biggest video game music single ever, Faye Wong’s “Eyes on Me” selling over 500,000 copies.

 

Now… Final Fantasy VIII… This is a tough one because neither of us really care for the soundtrack of FF8. There’s something about the tone of the instrumentation and the terrible engrish lyrics of “eyes on me” that leaves us with a bad taste in our mouths, but no one can deny the power of the opener, Liberi Fatali!!!!

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j4MMhY4RyxQ

 

Eh, fuck it, we’ll give you “Eyes on Me”.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANw53vQFJeM

 

Along this stream of Final Fantasy games, the often-underappreciated Final Fantasy IX would follow. FF9 would take a departure from the previous games with the soundtrack offering a more medieval scottish highlands inspired milieu. Nobuo would do the entire 160 tracks on his own for this game. Here’s one of them, “The Place I’ll return to someday”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1OK29BoxomE

 

We can’t forget “Rose of May”...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKw3eJV6XFM

 

Along with these classic pieces, Nobuo wrote yet another J-pop single to go with the game. This the greatest cover of “Melodies of Life” ever made:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wffHREGnTiA

 

The same year as FF9, the year 2000, would be Nobuo’s first foray into feature films, where he would compose the main theme for the animated film “Ah! My Goddess: The Movie”

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2VTbUCek8E

 

The first FInal Fantasy game without a soundtrack composed entirely by Uematsu himself would be the PS2 smash hit…. You guessed it! Final Fantasy X. One would guess that he may have been a bit burned out from FF9. In the end Nobuo ended up composing 51 of the game’s 89 tracks, including the Joe favorite “To Zanarkand”

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z3eQuEm4R10

 

One of the most commonly performed songs by The Black Mages is the incredibly zany “Fight with Seymour”

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=87e5qQnVerI

 

Can’t forget a Kaleb favorite, “Auron’s Theme”.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LaAhtI1_HU8

Oh, and one of the decent theme songs for a Final Fantasy, probably because it wasn’t awkwardly forced into the english language, here’s “Suteki Da Ne”

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ikunVjaG2hw

 

Final Fantasy XI, despite the arguments between Kaleb and I on whether or not he composed the soundtrack for the game, was composed in large part by him. NOT THE EXPANSIONS, but the original release. Here’s one of his tracks, “Ronfaure”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UZ-ZDsFUEP8

 

Another insanely cool track from FF11 from Uematsu is “Despair”

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=joxCId9SvAU

 

...And one of the best-ever FF songs, one that Joe actually likes. This is the epic “Distant Worlds”.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TzbzAXKCn-Q

 

Between 2003 and 2004, Uematsu seems to have been put on the backburner a little big, scoring for minor games like Hanjuku Hero Tai 3D and Egg Monster Hero, and only contributing one track for Final Fantasy Tactics Advanced during that time… Here’s the Main Theme:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqGNeqc26go

 

In 2004 Square veteran Hironobu Sakaguchi famously quit Square-Enix to create Mistwalker Studios, and in a way Nobuo left with him. Wanting to work on his live performances, his band the black mages, and seeking other opportunities creatively, Nobuo decided he was going to forge ahead as an independant contracter, and since that departure he’s returned to the FF series 3 times. For the soundtrack of Advent Children he built on his previous themes from FFVII, with FF12 he gave us another pop song I really don’t have the stomach for right now, and with FFXIV… Well, despite creating a lot of tracks for the original release, A Realm Reborn got rid of much of the original music from FF14. His biggest recent contribution to the FF series is probably the song “Answers” from the tragic end of the original game.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VMhcyzQ7mKw

 

Nobuo Uematsu has gone on primarily to work with his old friend “The Gooch” on the games Blue Dragon, Lost Odyssey, and The Last Story. All of which feature great soundtracks.  Here’s one from Blue Dragon, titled Waterside

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kAzwlwkcFaU

 

And here’s another from his non-Square Work. Here’s the terrifying Howl of the Departed from Lost Odyssey:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmCp20CW-Pw

 

Nobuo Uematsu's touch can be felt upon the whole series. Without him FInal Fantasy wouldn't be the same, and would be worse off for it. Nobuo Currently works hard at his live performances and various little composing projects for games and movies that he decides to work on. He’s doing so much, we can’t even cover it in a two-parter, but it seems he won’t be doing a full FF soundtrack anytime soon We are grateful to him and his work. What say we close with a gorgeous piece from “The Last Story” and close the book on our Spotlight of Nobuo Uematsu? This is “Lost Time”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=agAlOe0PoxY

 

Direct download: UFF_nobuospotlight2_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

It's time for our Nobuo Uematsu spotlight episode. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the tunes!

 

PART I

 

With the exception of Hironobu Sakaguchi, there really isn’t any other name more synonymous with Final Fantasy than that of “Nobuo Uematsu”. Composing either all or part of 12 of the 15 main-series final fantasy games, much of the feel and atmosphere, that visceral, unspeakable part of us that sings when we are reminded of a Final Fantasy, may be the melodies that Nobuo Uematsu is responsible for. With numerous remixes, live symphonic performances, and the original scores themselves, fans of Final Fantasy have relived their FF adventures through listening to the plethora of material presented by Nobuo Uematsu through their headphones while they do homework, clean their homes, or drive to work. There is no doubt that without the contribution that Nobuo Uematsu has brought to the series, much of our experiences with these games would be dramatically altered from what they are. Where would Star Wars be if it weren’t for John Williams? You could ask the same of Uematsu.

 

Note: You will be hearing a large number of remixes through this two-part Nobuo Uematsu spotlight, as well as some concert performances, and tracks from the games themselves. The youtube links for all of the pieces will be provided in the descriptions, and we ask that if you like a particular piece to consider following the links and supporting the artists that keep the music of Uematsu alive.

 

Let’s get to it…

 

[small interlude with the main FF theme]

 

Nobuo Uematsu was born on March 21st, 1959 in Kochi, Japan. Inspired by the music of Elton John, he taught himself how to play the piano at the age of 12.

 

Shortly after graduating from Kanagawa University, Uematsu began writing music for commercials before being hired by Square Co. in 1986 to work on video game scores.

 

For 18 years Uematsu worked at Square, creating over 30 video game and movie soundtracks before separating from square in 2004 to become an independant contracter.

 

We’re gonna pay special attention to these years, as that’s where most of the Final Fantasy meat is at; but first, let’s rewind the clock back to his very first game score, co-written with Takashi Uno, this is a piece from “Cruise Chaser Blassy” called “Space”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HcmWisadc9Q

 

1986 would end up being a very busy year for rookie Nobuo, the next game he’d work on would be his first that he’d compose entirely on his own called “Alpha”, although we can’t seem to find any tracks for that game, his next would be a NES classic called “King’s Knight”. Here’s the theme from that game:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBui5DMZAVs

 

December of 1986 would feature his next soundtrack, that for Suishō no Dragon. Here’s the intro track for that game:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MIhB2mgcRA

 

The 3-D Battles of WorldRunner would push Square’s stereoscopic 3D technology to the limits and with the music of this game, we would see a side of Nobuo we hadn’t seen before, you could call it “super pep” here’s a cover of the main theme:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uDZhruBVzP4

 

Another soundtrack was made for a little piece of software called “Apple town story”, and he would follow that up with “Mystery Quest” (not to be confused with Mystic Quest, a later game). Here’s a taste:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_qIcMhmXJ0

 

With few exceptions, most of the pre-FF games Nobuo Uematsu worked on have been forgotten, with the most notable detail about them being that they had soundtracks created by Uematsu. Nearly forgotten games such as Genesis, Alien 2, and Cleopatra no Maho, which were next up in line, could probably be seen as pot boilers for what was to come, quick cash grabs before Square’s impending doom in 1987. Here’s a taste from the 26/40-famitsu scored Cleopatra game:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cGnh3e6wNdo

 

Rad racer would come next, notable for being one of the few racing games on the NES. This is a track called “Grand Canyon”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GpzbHphuVrk&index=4&list=PL0D98064E11A94D91

 

One of the first dating sim games would follow (I sense desperation) with the long-winded mother fucking title of a game called “Nakayama Miho no Tokimeki High School”, that Nobuo would co-score with Toshiaki Imai. And the last game Nobuo would score, a sequel of sorts to 3D worldrunner would be that of “JJ”. But ya’ll wanna get to the good stuff. I can feel it. Fine. His last effort of 1987 would be the soundtrack for Final Fantasy.

 

This now-legendary soundtrack featured both the arpeggio prelude and main theme that would be staples in the series to come. He remarked once that he felt kind-of embarrassed as he hadn’t worked all that hard on pieces that would be hummed by gamers around the world. This is one of the best songs in the game. Here’s a cover for “Matoya’s theme”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TdRMfqWNJok

 

Beginning in 1988, Nobuo would slow down his work to 1 to 2 games per year, primarily being that of the scores for Final Fantasy games. Occasionally though, he would take a detour. Here’s a track from “Hanjuku Hero”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ebIzHCFGxTc

 

His other score of 1988 would be for the sequel to FInal Fantasy, Final Fantasy 2. Much of the original score from FF1 would make it into FF2 for our enjoyment, along with some original works. Here’s a remix of “Rebellion”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nU06ttrbqcM

 

For some reason Square thought it would be a really awesome idea to make a game based on the book Tom Sawyer, but if there were someone who could make a killer soundtrack for such a game, it would be Uematsu for Square’s Tom Sawyer in 1989.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=auLBLk4ibAk

 

Ha ha jk

 

Here’s a real piece from the game. An effort from Nobuo to make a soundtrack more, as he calls it “scenic”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o2uUfAcF7T8&list=PLfUvsxulQQd-zuBTVzmYzj1RvOArPnnEp&index=1

 

The Final Fantasy Legend, or as it was originally called in Japan, “Makai Toushi Saga” (the reason it’s not counted as an FF game in our podcast) would round out 1989 with this Game Boy classic and square’s first platinum hit at the time with 1.37 million copies sold. Nobuo remarked that he had difficulty coming up with the 16 tracks for the game because of the hardware limitations of the game boy. Despite this, the game would have a soundtrack considered as classic for many of its fans. Here’s a remix of “Battle With Creator”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KXTMQ4APiwg

 

Final Fantasy 3 would follow in 1990, and with this game came the fucking awesome piece “Crystal Tower” check out this power-metal remix:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lT8humrSC2c

 

Considered one of the best Racing Games of the NES, Rad Racer II would be yet another game graced with Uematsu’s presence, as his 11th game score. Here’s a super upbeat cover of Gumball Crash titled “Fire in the Tires”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=trFfjaNtySI

The second Saga game or “Final Fantasy Legend 2” would come next, and would eventually be heralded as 97th of the greatest games of all time in a poll by Famitsu. For this game, Kenji Ito would assist in composition. Here’s a piano cover of “Save the World”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCLU6V6coqg

 

Nobuo’s first masterpiece would come on the SNES and would be his only game of 1991. He’s called the composing process for the game one of the hardest in his career.  Staying up with the sound team deep into the night, the music would be so heralded that one of the tracks from the game would go on to be official music curriculum for japanese school students. That game would be Final Fantasy IV, and that song would be “Theme of Love”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LfV0YlvBpvE

 

And, how can we call ourselves fans of FF IV if we don’t include Fabul’s Theme?

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rlklyML9Pu8

 

Nobuo wouldn’t write anything for Romancing Saga, although for it and its sequel he would assist with the arrangement, his next mega-work would be Final Fantasy V. FF5 would require Uematsu to create over 56 tracks, a favorite of the game being the song “Dear Friends”, which Nobuo has performed on countless occasions:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tgBccEEtu64

 

The next track is featured during the fight with one of the series’ most beloved opponents; Gilgamesh. Here’s a cover of “Clash on the Big Bridge”:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQGcv3encAo

 

We could legiimately make one of these entire episodes about FF6, but we’re gonna go ahead with the two big tracks from that masterpiece of a game. Here’s an amazing metal cover of “Dancing Mad”

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nqPP9tp6PKo

 

And let’s finish it off with a favorite of ours, Terra’s theme. Join us next week for part 2.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oG-Q9ELmGpw

Direct download: UFF_Nobuospotlight1_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we invite one of our patrons, Minzara, on for an episode! We discuss his history with the Final Fantasy series from the beginning, and discuss his thoughts on the Final Fantasy VII remake, and Final Fantasy XV. There's also another fun Stump the Host segment. Find out who wins!

Direct download: UFF_Minzara_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Joe goes off on another Joseph Campbell tangent. I think it's in the name. I really do.. Anyways, we discuss the Eastern mythological storytelling methods in the Final Fantasy series. This style of storytelling features a more realistic approach to characters. It doesn't label individuals as good and evil, but rather as agents of both. We talk about when Final Fantasy began adopting this heavier, and when it was a bit on the loose end. We move on to answer some questions, and give a bit o news. If you haven't bought FF X, it's out on Steam now, so go pick it up! Enjoy the episode!

 

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HU5nM3eSuac

Direct download: UFF_104_Easternandlavantmythosinff_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we discuss On the Way to a Smile, Episode Tifa. This is part of a short story series set before the events of Advent Children, but after Final Fantasy VII. This story was originally released in a prologue book along with the Complete edition of Advent Children. We discuss what we hope to get from the other episodes in the series. Special thanks to thelifestream.net.

 

Link to the Lifestreams readings: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=whWA6NZMhhA

Direct download: UFF_103_OnthewaytoasmileTifa_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we run through the many retcons of Final Fantasy VII. We found an amazing article from http://www.ff7citadel.com/ that detailed the retcons, and their level of retconification. We briefly discuss each retcon, and decide if we side with Citadel on their ranking of the most to least acceptable changes that were brought on by Dirge of Cerberus, Crisis Core, Before Crisis, Advent Children, Last Order, and beyond! Enjoy the episode guys!

EPIC HIP HOP REMIX:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YwWuPUhgTM

Super Fucking Awesome Retcon list: http://www.ff7citadel.com/compilation/comp_retcon.shtml

Direct download: UFF_102_FF7retcons_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Development History: Dirge of Cerberus was born during the development of Advent Children. It was part of the Compilation of Final Fantasy VII, along with Before Crisis, and Crisis Core. Yoshinori Kitase had decided that Dirge of Cerberus would be a shooter, based on his love for the series. They threw in some role-playing elements, due to the lack of appeal for a pure action game among developers.

 

Square chose Vincent due to the possibilities for expanding his backstory, which we all know was very limited in Final Fantasy VII. Before the team started working on Dirge of Cerberus, they considered using other gun toting characters from Final Fantasy, such as Barret Wallace, Irvine Kinneas or Yuna from X-2.. I feel like we all dodged a bullet there. They eventually settled on Vincent, once they solidified the expansion of the Final Fantasy VII universe.

 

Dirge of Cerberus was anounced in September of 2004, and was scheduled for release in Japan in 2005. The game originally had an online version, but they removed the multiplayer support due to the popularity of PLayOnline, and a lack of PS2 HDD support. The missions that were originally part of the multiplayer mode were turned into secret unlockable missions in our version of the game. There was also an EASY MODE available in Japan that was removed. The game was released on January 26th 2008 in Japan, and August 15th, 2006 in North America. It has sold around 1.5 million copies worldwide, and has a 57% on Metacritic.

 

Story

Dirge starts out with Vincent and Yuffie helping to evacuate Midgar, just before it is destroyed by Meteor. We find Hojo unconscious over the controls, stuff blows up, and we move three years in the future where Vincent is chilling in Kalm. Kalm is attacked, and we meet up with Reeve, who is now part of the World Regenesis Organization, whose main goal is recovery after the events of FF VII. The unknown enemies capture and kill some citizens.

 

We later learn that the people who attacked Kalm are part of a covert Shinra organization called Deepground. These are, once again, genetically altered soldiers. Vincent finds out that he’s on their chopping block, due to the Protomateria that he carries within himself. He uses this materia to control the Chaos within. Deepground wants the materia to control Omega. Chaos is described as “Omega’s squire to the heavens.” The Chaos gene was injected into Vincent thirty years prior, by Lucrecia Crescent, a research assistant to Hojo. Vincent had the hots for this one.

 

Searching for more info, Vincent goes to Nibelheim, where Lucrecia studied Omega and Chaos. While checking out the manor, Vincent get’s jumped by Rosso, a super hot ruskie chick that rips the Protomateria out of Vincent’s chest. She is a member of Deepground, but is in an elite group called the Tsviets. Weiss is the leader, then Nero, Shelke, and Azul are also members. She would have given him a “happy ending”, but Yuffie came in and saved him last minute. The two return to the WRO headquarters and find that Deepthroat has launched an assault on the base. The WRO end up capturing Shelke, a member of Deepthroat that is synaptically connected to Lucrecia’s memories, which will allow the WRO to complete the research on Omega. Shelkes sister Shalua Rui, high ranking scientist and catastrophic money shot survivor, discovers that Omega is a WEAPON. Omega is supposed to absorb the Lifestream and move to another planet, leaving everyone and everything behind to die. Deepthroat’s endgame is to kill a bunch of people in order to trick the planet into activating Omega early.


Vincent and the Dubya Arr Oh attack the Deepground headquarters in Midgar. Reeve and friends battle soldiers and attempt to destroy the Mako reactors, currently feeding Omega, Vincent dives straight into the heart of enemy territory to battle Weiss. He finds Weiss dead, but as Omega stirs, so does Weiss. We then find out that Weiss is being possessed by Hojo, who uploaded his consciousness into the Worldwide Network, and then took possession of Weiss' body while he was attempting to find a cure for a virus. Nero, an enemy fought earlier in the game, emerges from the Lifestream and destroys Hojo. He then “merges” with his brother to fuse with Omega. Vincent then transforms into Chaos to destroy Omega Weiss. Shelke finds more info on Lucrecia’s Protomateria, and Vincent takes on Omega. Omega sprouts Lifestream wings and tries to leave the planet, but Vincent destroys it. He’s seen alter visiting the tomb of Lucrecia, stating that Chaos and Omega have returned to the planet.

 

REMIXES:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k3wvbTMcitw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CtcxmG2sha8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31vEvY1oX8Y

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLPy7CMs87Y

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3xFY_MPHQq0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g0Id7inOneM&index=20&list=PL3D098A642BA0CC60

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eRTbXmt0M0o&index=7&list=PL3D098A642BA0CC60

Direct download: UFF_101_Dirgeofcerberus_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Join us for episode 100 of Ultima Final Fantasy! This week, we go through and discuss our lists of the top ten most underrated moments in Final Fantasy. From the creeping oglop in Final Fantasy IX, to seeing Sephiroth find out about his past in the basement of the Shinra Building, we cover the moments that should be discussed more often in regular Final Fantasy chatter. We also discuss the 7-11 event for Final Fantasy XIV, where soft drinks contain codes that can be redeemed for in game items. We talk about Final Fantasy IX's release on Steam. The game features Steam achievements, no encounter mode, auto save functions, and cleaned up graphics. We then discuss the multi part release for the Final Fantasy VII Remake.

Enjoy the memories, and thank you for sticking with us these last hundred episodes!

Direct download: UFF_100_toptenunderratedffmoments_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Final Fantasy XV Predictions III

By Kaleb Schweiss



As we all know, Square Enix has sprayed a shoopuff sized load of Final Fantasy XV content onto our eagerly awaiting faces. From a hyper CG film directed by Takeshi Nozue, the man who brought us Advent Children, to a new Final Fantasy XV Demo titled “Final Fantasy XV: Platinum Demo”. But first, let’s start off with Brotherhood: Final Fantasy XV.

 

Kingsglaive: Final Fantasy XV. As all of us who watched Final Fantasy XV: Uncovered know, Sean Bean, Lena Headey, and Aaron Paul are behind three of the biggest voices of the film. The film will feature King Regis and his Kingsglaive, or Kingsguard…., as they fight off the evil empire of Niflheim, who is advancing ever deeper into the kingdom of Lucis. They are, naturally, after the crystal that is housed here. Regis is essentially forced to secede his lands outside the capital, and send his son to wed the uber hot Lunafreya, a princess of Tenebrae, and captive of the Niflheim. It essentially looks like a little more back story for FF XV, centered around King Regis, rather than Noctis. It is set to take place just after Noctis leaves to wet his whick on ole Lunafreya. Kingsglaive doesn’t have an official release date, but it will be available sometime before September 30th.


Brotherhood: Final Fantasy XV is a five episode, completely original animated short. It delves further into the relationships between Noctis and his friends, and sets up the story for Final Fantasy XV. This will be a free to view series, and the first episode is up on YouTube. It is said that this series will follow Noctis from childhood on. Here’s the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsVhwsUFaDE

 

Thoughts on episode 1 of brotherhood?

 

Platinum Demo: Final Fantasy XV

This demo is a free to download game that features a dream within child Noctis. The “storyline” explored will be unique to Platinum Demo, and players who complete the demo will receive the Carbuncle summon for the full game. The demo essentially showcases the battle system. It shows us young Noctis, with squeaky hammer in hand, as he figures out the important things in life, such as driving, and destroying his enemies… seeing them driven before him, and the lamentation of the women!!!!! Well, sort of. You also unlock magic in this demo, and get to play as adult Noctis to take on the formiddable Iron Giant at the end of the demo.

 

Thoughts on Platinum Demo: Final Fantasy XV?

 

Some final mentions

-Still considering PC release

-Airship car thing will be fully controllable, and obtained near end of 1game

-Square may produce more Ultimate….Editions of FFXV, for the 99 percent of us who couldn’t get one.

- FF XV will feature Justice Monsters Five, a pinball-style FF monster reference game. There will be various locations to play this game, so you shouldn’t have a hard time accessing the minigame.

-There are over 200 quests in the game so far, ranging from story missions to chocobo racing.

- Weapons can be improved by collecting materials from the world, and battles. Ability points will be obtained once you level up.

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=951CjSrLd5M

Direct download: UFF_99_FFXVConfirmations_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Making-of

 

Crisis Core began development as a PSP port of the FInal Fantasy VII Mobile Phone Japan-only game “Before Crisis”. Hajime Tabata, event Director for Monster Rancher 2, and the creator of “Before Crisis” was chosen as director of the port. It would also be produced by Hideki Imaizumi, the score by Takeharu Ishimoto, written by Kazushige Nojima, and art designed by Yoshihiro Imaizumi.

Soon into production of the port, however, when it was decided that the port was going to center around the mythical character of Zack, they opted to create a brand-new game instead.

They titled this new project “Before Crisis Core” and eventually shortened it to “Crisis Core”, and drew upon the artwork and back story left over from the development of Final Fantasy VII. Despite having plenty of backstory for FF7 filled in with this game, they initially wanted to include more, but were restricted by the size of the PSP’s UMD’s. Much of Cloud’s involvement was cut in order to focus the game on Zack.

The game's antagonist, Genesis, was brought over from the development of Dirge of Cerberus, and made the main baddie, in an attempt to cohesively connect the games. That and the Rock Star voice actor, “Gackt”, wanted a bigger role, so Producer Hideki Imaizumi gave him one.

The team behind Crisis Core had some hurdles to get over in development. With Zack as the main protagonist, the regular “RPG” style of gameplay wasn’t going to work, and so they opted for a more fluid Action style of gameplay, with little exploration. There was some fear that such a departure from traditional gameplay and leveling would alienate fans, as well as concern over retconning certain elements of Final Fantasy 7. Square, at this time, was receiving a lot of backlash over the Animated short film, Last Order, and were trying to make up for it. Too late into development, the team realized that the player’s inability to skip cutscenes was a huge oversight that they couldn’t fix, and the luck-based leveling, meant to keep gameplay from growing stale, had its problems as well.

Despite all this, Crisis Core’s demo was released in 2006 at Jump festa, and in may of 2007 Tabata stated that the game was 90% complete (Tabata loves his percentages). In september of that year, Crisis Core was released to Japanese audiences, and in the spring of 2008 it made its way to western shores. Note that 2007 would have been the 10th anniversary for FF7, and a lot was made of Crisis Core and other projects of Square’s Compilation of Final Fantasy VII, the others being Before Crisis, the shooter Dirge of Cerberus (our next game), and the CGI movie Advent Children.

Crisis Core would be released with a bang, well reviewed by most (metacritic has it at 83/100), it ended up being the 6th biggest selling PSP game ever, selling 3.1 million copies worldwide. It’s definitely one of the more successful FInal Fantasy Sequels/Prequels, praised for its focus on the Final Fantasy VII backstory, although faulted sometimes for it’s DMW or “randomized as hell limit break system” RAHLBS, it remains a beloved addition to the FFVII universe, and has been called one of the most tear-inducing game of all time.





Story

 

Crisis core takes place 7 years before the events of FFVII, and focuses the story around a Shinra Soldier named Zack Fair, as he explores the dark roots and experiments of Genetically modified Soldiers like himself.

 

It begins with Zack and his mentor Angeal being dispatched to support the Shinra war against the nation of Wutai, during which Angeal disappeared. Later it’s “revealed” that Angeal and another soldier named Genesis, have somehow betrayed shinra, and Zack and Sephiroth are sent to kill him.

 

At this point, Genesis and a dude named Dr. Hollander, throw a clone army Shinra’s way. Sephiroth attacks Genesis, and Zack goes off to find Hollander. Angeal, however, stops Zack from killing Hollander by knocking him into the abyss, as Hollander must be kept alive if they are to have any hope in finding a cure from being turned into a monster, something that happens when potential Soldiers are exposed to too much of Jenova’s genetic Material, an amount had by both Genesis and Angeal, as well as Sephiroth.

 

Zack wakes up, having fallen into Aerith’s church, and they spend some quality time together while Zack heals. When Zack returns to the ever-being-attacked Shinra building, he is convinced to side with his friend Angeal, who has become disillusioned with Genesis. But once again, Angeal disappears, and Zack is ordered somewhere new, Modeoheim, where Genesis was last seen. On route he meets a young Cloud Strife, and their brief friendship begins. Zack does end up fighting Genesis, but Genesis throws himself into a Mako Reactor in the end.

 

On that same trip, Zack finds Angeal is fusing with his own clones, being overtaken by the monster inside of him, and eventually Zack is forced to kill him, inheriting his mentor’s sword in the wake of his death.

 

After all of this, despite the fact that Genesis’s clones still fight Shinra, Angeal’s have become some sort of protector for Zack and Aerith. Still in search of answers ;regarding Genesis’s whereabouts, Zack, Sephiroth, and shinra troops that include Cloud, go to investigate the Nibelheim Reactor. And it’s here that Sephiroth finds out about the experiments that created him, and he goes absolutely fucking nuts, destroys a town, and attempts to take Jenova’s body. Zack fails to stop him, and in a crazy feat of strength, after being stabbed by a huge fucking sword, Cloud throws Sephiroth into the lifestream below the reactor.

 

Later, Zack finds himself and a very weakened Cloud in Hojo’s lab, as part of the Jenova experiments. So he freaks out, takes cloud, and gets the fuck out of there. This causes Shinra to pursue Zack and Cloud ruthlessly (Cloud, because he’s the last experiment to hold Sephiroth’s cells, who is the one who reacted with the most stability with Jenova’s cells).

 

Hollander tries to get Cloud, but Zack makes quick work of him, and aligns himself with Dr. Lazard, who is turning into an Angeal Clone, and sends Zack to go to Banora to defeat Genesis. After a super-monstrous Genesis is killed, Zack returns to Cloud and finds a note from Aerith that revealed a 4 year gap that took place between the incidents at Nibelheim, and him waking in Hojo’s lab.


With Shinra in hot pursuit, Zack attempts to flee with cloud, and ends up sacrificing himself for cloud in leigh of hundreds of attacking shinra troops. Shinra leaves without cleaning up the scene, and Zack shares his last moments with Cloud, and like Angeal once gave him the Buster sword, so to does Zack pass the sword to Cloud.

REMIXES:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CMStv9pOc7o

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xj3W03XU-C8

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQtRKaCNfOM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9-fhq2NNuw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bs0unSjG1Fg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hPllCemi--w

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Hwi3pGylwI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJ2eU218U7M

Direct download: UFF_98_Crisiscoreff7_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Joe and Kaleb Craig explore the Final Fantasy XV Release event. Join us for all the Sean Bean action!

Direct download: minisodeffxvuncoveredi.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:27pm MST

This week, we discuss what the optimum length for a Final Fantasy game is. This is a subject of much interest as of late, since the creators of Final Fantasy XV have announced that the campaign will take about fifty hours to complete. This dwarfs many of the rest of the main series, at least where the main campaign is concerned within the Final Fantasy series. We compare this fifty hour game time to our Final Fantasy IX playtime, as Final Fantasy IX is the highest rated in the series. We touch base on what we want as far as story, game play, and side quests to be implemented within Final Fantasy as a whole. We then answer a few great questions from our community members. Enjoy the episode!

Direct download: UFF_97_Length_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we discuss Masayoshi Sokens history within Square Enix. Enjoy!

Spotlight: Masayoshi Soken

By Joseph DeGolyer

 

Look, it’s hard to follow up after a huge success.

 

To every first generation of Saturday night live hosts, there’s always a second generation.

Like Irvine Kershner after George Lucas.

Like Jason Newsted after Cliff Burton.

Like Andrew Johnson after Abraham Lincoln.

Like Commodus after Marcus Aurelius.

 

Some, like Kershner, rise to meet the challenge. Others, like Andrew Johnson, do so terribly their effects sour generations. Even more are just forgotten with time.

 

For Example,

Can you name the musical composer for Final Fantasy 12?

How about 13?

 

For most of us, these names probably don’t pop so easily into our heads… (They are Hitoshi Sakimoto, Hayato Matsuo, Masaharu Iwata for FF12 and Masashi Hamauzu for 13 By the way---and yes, I did have to look those up.)

 

How can you possibly follow a legend like Nobuo Uematsu? With 12 main series Final Fantasy games composed primarily by him.

With pieces like “theme of Love” from FF4 being taught to schoolchildren in Japan, and having the second-highest selling video game single ever (Eyes on Me, yes I still hate it, although I won’t deny the accomplishment), how can someone possibly fill his shoes.

 

You’ve heard the rumors… Is the next Uematsu here?

 

HAS THE CHOSEN ONE ARRIVED?

 

On that, who knows?

 

But let’s talk about him anyway.

 

This is our special Spotlight on Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn composer, Masayoshi Soken!!!

 

----------------------------small musical interlude----------------------------------

 

Masayoshi Soken was born on January 10th, 1975 in La Paz Mexico. His father was a Trumpet Player in the NHK Symphony Orchestra for many years, as well as a professor at the Okinawa Prefectural University of Art.

Why was his pregnant mother in mexico at the time of Soken’s birth?

Who knows!

Because he went straight from Mexico to Tokyo, Japan.

There he grew to love music, learn piano, learn the guitar, and get into the Tokyo University of Science.

 

Now I’ve desperately been searching for what he got his degree in at University… There are departments there in Science, engineering, innovation studies, chemical sciences, pharmaceutical sciences, management, fire science, math, technology, and biology….

 

Basically, no music or sound design school.

 

Students are required to take some liberal arts stuff, according to the university’s website.

 

I figured, for fun, I’ll list off their principles on liberal arts-supplemented education:

 

“Leaders in science and technology are required to remain motivated to tackle, in cooperation with like minded people from different fields, cross-sectional and complex issues that transcend the borders of specialties, while maintaining a foothold in science and technology. We believe that cultivating such ability and supporting outstanding specialized skills are the role of liberal arts education.

For this purpose, organizing a curriculum for liberal arts education should aim to cultivate the following types of ability.

  • Ability to adopt a bird’s-eye perspective of nature, people, and society
  • Ability to think logically and critically
  • Communication skills
  • Internationalism (ability to understand different cultures, languages, ethnic groups, and international issues)
  • Self-management ability”

 

----------------------------small musical interlude-------------------------------------

 

Whatever it was that he learned from University, be it Biology or his skill in “Internationalism”, he was able to get an interview at Square in 1998 to work in the sound department.

 

Apparently, his enthusiasm for rock and roll is what got him the job, as well as his sick skills on the guitar.

 

And he put that guitar skill to work with his first video game soundtrack credit for the game “Gekikuukan Pro Yakyuu At the End of the Century” in 1999. The game features his punk rock music tracks, as well as some of his sound design… Let’s take a listen to one of his first video game scores….

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zyj_AjLK7E8

 

Soken would continue to work on sports games for Square, until Square decided that they were done making them. Before that time, would compose tracks for the games  Nichibeikan Pro Baseball: Final League and the soccer simulator World Fantasista…

 

Here’s a bit of sound from that game:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IphGvVxw9x8

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Now, Soken stayed quiet after the Sports Team was dissolved at square. My only assumption was that he was just lurking in sound design for various games, and not given any more opportunities to compose any music until 2005. There is some confusion regarding his credits, as Soken often went by pseudonyms during this time. It is believed that he co-created the piece "Endless Love, Endless Road” with Masashi Hamauzu and Tsuyoshi Sekito from a Final Fantasy X Tribute Album called “Feel/Go Dream Yuna & Tidus”in 2001. I don’t see any proof of this anywhere, but if Wikipedia says it, you know it’s true!!!!

 

I think it deserves a bit of a listen though, don’t you?

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DqID7jQwnLQ

 

If you want more information on that album… It’s supposed to be songs about Tidus and Yuna… You can look up more if you want.

 

His next piece that we know of was the beginning jingle for the show “Square-Enix music TV” where Square’s video game composers would be interviewed and promote their music.

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6hsXHXOEn8

 

On this front, in an attempt to promote himself, apparently he showed up at some kind of fan convention and fought some robots half-naked for Square-Enix players…

 

Perhaps this paid off, he got to compose one spoof soundtrack for Front Mission 5 called “Blue Stream”...

 

http://downloads.khinsider.com/game-soundtracks/album/front-mission-5-scars-of-the-war-original-soundtrack/321-blue-stream.mp3

 

And so his return to Composing was complete.

 

He would next go on to do the entire soundtrack for the Square/Nintendo collaboration Mario 3 on 3. Here’s a taste of that...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ehAZmNS6BPI&list=PLBBD787E4AD05D073

 

Now, as you can see, a lot of this stuff is more poppy in tone, and far from anything you’d hear in let’s say Final Fantasy 6, but I think that soken was just going pretty much where he was told. He contributed a remix for The Bouncer’s main theme, and he worked on Square-Enix’s web-based games Elebest, Game Brain, and Zenobuster.

 

He was moving up the ladder.

 

In 2007 he got the opportunity to play second fiddle to Kenji Ito on the score of Dawn of Mana in 2007.

 

Here’s his biggest contribution to that game, a track called “Sanctuary”... Sit back and relax for this one...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cDbxqrcxSkk

 

Now, that’s more like it, am I right?

 

Mr. Soken was still considered a mid-level composer in the company, and his next two projects “Nameless game” in 2008 would be a minor release on the DS, a Video Game adaptation of The Ring. The theme here, I think, shows that he can do more than pop, rock, and pretty piano pieces… He can create something epic...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n_8YugTt-Bc&list=PLfSOLl6OGya6nIZomTmyNp7MZaPnkt2f1&index=2

 

The last major game he’d work on before Final Fantasy XIV would be the game “Mario Sports Mix” in 2010.

 

I’ll play a bit of one of the pieces that showcases Soken’s punk rock style the most from this game…

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqjH20atoNE&list=PL8827B3786F638845&index=5

 

So, at some point he got hired on to do the sound direction for the 1.0 version of Final Fantasy XIV after this (Which, considering how huge the series is, that is still a massively important job in its own right). Nobuo Uematsu was making a one-off return to the series after going solo, and his shoes wouldn’t need to be filled until 1.0’s massive failure.

 

During the 1.0 to 2.0 debacle (you can listen to our FF14 review to learn all about that), Soken was given the double duty of directing the sound of both games. With no Uematsu, Soken had to fill in much of the soundtrack himself, eventually creating over 100 tracks for the new game, and later creating another 60 tracks for the Heavensward expansion.

 

Let’s go through a few of his most popular tracks from FF14. We’ll be putting up piano remixes these pieces, as I think that that may be the best way to truly appreciate the musicality of Soken--check the description for the links and check out the channels. For the true Soken audio, consult the game, or buy the albums.

 

This first one is called “Wailers and Waterwheels” arranged by Matt Fuss...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FmZRCxdvSvU&list=PLBEaChoG50t4iyMscJ9mwMc0fCEK2MNh3

 

Here’s a pretty cool version of “Leviathan” from Husky By the Geek...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h37r9S0GdIs&index=13&list=PLpamuGhPkpi5sSydUiEYpP3FDpgeGdTP7

 

...and we’ll play one more by the Shanghai Philharmonic Orchestra. This is “A New Hope”...

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p97GPoQDXfc

 

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

For our closing statements on Masayoshi Soken, I’d like to say that I think he’s got incredible potential as far as his future work is concerned. Many FF14 players have gathered around his music in particular, praising it over Uematsu’s work on the same game.

 

I think the Jury’s still out on this one, but I sense great things from Masayoshi Soken in the future.

 

Let’s fade out with my favorite piece from Heavensward that I’ve heard so far… This is “Contention”. A remix by Benjamin Antony James…

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G-9WEwgevEg

Direct download: UFF_96_MasayoshiSoken_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Final Fantasy IV: The After Years

By Kaleb Schweiss

Development History:

 

    Final Fantasy IV: The After Years was initially announced prior to the release of the DS Remake of Final Fantasy IV. Takashi Tokida, the game's executive producer, discussed there being talk of creating an after story, and a discussion began about working on mobile titles. Tokida may seem to be jumping in and changing things, but he had become quite attached to the characters, due to being a scenario writer for Final Fantasy IV. They decided that releasing the game in a mobile format would be beneficial, so it would allow players to play after completing the DS remake. This would effectively give you time to refresh your knowledge of FFIV before moving on to the After Years. The decision to have an episodic release came from a desire to have players anticipate the new chapters in the same way manga readers do. The Japanese mobile phones got the game on February 18th, 2008. The Prologue section Return of the Moon and Ceodore’s Tale were the initial releases, and the succeeding chapters came out in one month intervals. Just before the Lunarians Tale was released, Square Enix announced that the game had reached one million downloads, not including the free prologue chapter. As of March 2009, it has exceeded three million paid downloads. The game has a generally positive rate of review, with IGN giving it an 8/10.

 

Storyline:

 

    The game takes place after the moon leaves the Blue Planets orbit. Peace ensues in the kingdoms, Mist is rebuilt. Civility reigns. Seventeen years later, the unimaginable happens. A second moon appears. FOR THE SECOND TIME!! We are then introduced to the product of Cecil’s powerful loins; Ceodore. Yes. His FUCKING GAME IS CEODORE!!! He is being initiated into the Red Wings, Baron’s famous air force fleet. He is introduced as a character who fears he’ll never step out of the shadow of his famous parents. He later finds out that he has what it takes, yada yada yada. We then head back to Baron, where we see Cecil, Rosa, and Cid fighting the endless onslaught of enemies, who seemingly appeared out of nowhere. We are then introduced to the Mysterious Girl. Cecil sees the imminent threat, and has Cid relocate with Rosa while he confronts this little bitch. The woman summons the legendary beast of ruin, Bahamut, and rips Cecil about a hundred new assholes. While these events take place, the airship carrying Ceodore is attacked. Everyone but Ceodore is killed, and he begins his journey home. While on the way, he gets ambushed by monsters, and is rescued by the Hooded Man. They head towards Mysidia, and we intercut to Mt. Ordeals, where Kain is heading towards Baron with a raging boner for Cecil’s sweet ass. On the way, Kain teams up with the aforementioned Mysterious Girl to steal the crystals. He also kidnaps Rosa, stating that he plans to kill Cecil and take Rosa for his own.  Ceodore, the Hooded man, and everyone’s “favorite” Spoony Bard Edward, intercept Kain in front of Cecil’s throneroom. This is when the Hooded Man finally reveals himself as the real Kain. The Kain we had been seeing up to this point was in fact a manifestation of his dark half. Kain fights his dark half, much like Cecil did seventeen years prior, and wins. He then becomes a Holy Dragoon.

 

    We then get some of that sweet, sweet Rydia. She, Luca, and Edge are on an airship in the underworld. Suddenly, or not so much if you played the Lunarians Tale, the Man in Black appears and takes over the airship, taking it towards Baron. Upon approach, the party sees meteors falling from the second moon. They get to Baron, and find it sealed by magic. They then travel the world looking for their lost friends. This part of the game really reminded me of the Planet of Ruin in Final Fantasy VI. You eventually run into Rydia, and proceed to hunt down each of her missing Eidolons. Once the control of the summons via the Mysterious Girl are broken, the party is finally able to enter Baron. Once the party frees Cecil from the Mysterious Girl,  the Man in Black reveals himself as Golbez. Cecil, while freed from the girl's grasp, is a little off. The party realizes that the second moon is going to crash into their planet, reducing everything to a molten ball of pain, and try to come up with ways to stop it. Enter the Lunar Whale! Baawwwwooooooaaapppp!!!! The party takes the Lunar Whale to, you guessed it, the new moon. You descend the hours long dungeons, fighting your way through enemies from the original Final Fantasy IV, and then throws us a curveball. We fight bosses from Final Fantasy I through VI!! WTF!!!!!!! You eventually encounter Cecil’s evil side, fight it, and Cecil returns to the light.


    Once you reach floor 1,000,000,000,000,000 of the dungeon, the party comes across a really freaky, FFIX esque room filled with multiple models of the Mysterious Girl being infused with what I can only assume is either Mako, or Mt. Dew. The Mysterious Girl comes from a race called the Maenads. They were each brought to be by the Creator, and their mission was to retrieve the crystals. The party descends deeper to discover this creator. He reveals that he comes from a race that died out due to failure to evolve, and he decided that he universe shouldn’t be overrun by inferior species. So, he did the only thing a logical Final Fantasy end boss could do. Create an intricate system of data gathering cameras in the form of crystals, and sent them around the universe to monitor life on the planets. He used these crystals to determine if the planet is evolving to its true potential. If it’s not up to par, he will destroy it. The Blue Planet did not reach the bar, as determined by James Cameron, and thus will be destroyed. Once this is revealed, he crushes the party. They are revived by the power of the crystals, and begin to wail on the Creators back door. Once they penetrate his pucker, we fight him. The moob form is fairly simple to destroy, but the ultimate form is another thing entirely. The party uses a crystal on him, and ultimately kills him, and flee the moon, rescuing the Maenad who explained their race to the party earlier. As the creator dies, he thanks the party for defeating him, and shows remorse for his actions. As he should, since the inhabitants of an inferior planet tore him to pieces. The party returns to their homes, Rydia adopts Maenad and names her Cuore, Edge’s ninjas continue to spy on everything, Cecil has Ceodore serve in the Red Wings under Kain, and also orders Baron’s airships disarmed and used to help rebuild the other kingdoms.

 

REMIXES:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGMku7bGwB4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pOnJgWO8MBY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQ8QiTd2Baw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2SMrZjz28w

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xaLB5xHIjSs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6AE0IJY5ZOI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dhu0POCLfS0

Direct download: UFF_95_Afteryears2_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Final Fantasy IV: The After Years

By Kaleb Schweiss

Development History:

 

    Final Fantasy IV: The After Years was initially announced prior to the release of the DS Remake of Final Fantasy IV. Takashi Tokida, the game's executive producer, discussed there being talk of creating an after story, and a discussion began about working on mobile titles. Tokida may seem to be jumping in and changing things, but he had become quite attached to the characters, due to being a scenario writer for Final Fantasy IV. They decided that releasing the game in a mobile format would be beneficial, so it would allow players to play after completing the DS remake. This would effectively give you time to refresh your knowledge of FFIV before moving on to the After Years. The decision to have an episodic release came from a desire to have players anticipate the new chapters in the same way manga readers do. The Japanese mobile phones got the game on February 18th, 2008. The Prologue section Return of the Moon and Ceodore’s Tale were the initial releases, and the succeeding chapters came out in one month intervals. Just before the Lunarians Tale was released, Square Enix announced that the game had reached one million downloads, not including the free prologue chapter. As of March 2009, it has exceeded three million paid downloads. The game has a generally positive rate of review, with IGN giving it an 8/10.

 

Storyline:

 

    The game takes place after the moon leaves the Blue Planets orbit. Peace ensues in the kingdoms, Mist is rebuilt. Civility reigns. Seventeen years later, the unimaginable happens. A second moon appears. FOR THE SECOND TIME!! We are then introduced to the product of Cecil’s powerful loins; Ceodore. Yes. His FUCKING GAME IS CEODORE!!! He is being initiated into the Red Wings, Baron’s famous air force fleet. He is introduced as a character who fears he’ll never step out of the shadow of his famous parents. He later finds out that he has what it takes, yada yada yada. We then head back to Baron, where we see Cecil, Rosa, and Cid fighting the endless onslaught of enemies, who seemingly appeared out of nowhere. We are then introduced to the Mysterious Girl. Cecil sees the imminent threat, and has Cid relocate with Rosa while he confronts this little bitch. The woman summons the legendary beast of ruin, Bahamut, and rips Cecil about a hundred new assholes. While these events take place, the airship carrying Ceodore is attacked. Everyone but Ceodore is killed, and he begins his journey home. While on the way, he gets ambushed by monsters, and is rescued by the Hooded Man. They head towards Mysidia, and we intercut to Mt. Ordeals, where Kain is heading towards Baron with a raging boner for Cecil’s sweet ass. On the way, Kain teams up with the aforementioned Mysterious Girl to steal the crystals. He also kidnaps Rosa, stating that he plans to kill Cecil and take Rosa for his own.  Ceodore, the Hooded man, and everyone’s “favorite” Spoony Bard Edward, intercept Kain in front of Cecil’s throneroom. This is when the Hooded Man finally reveals himself as the real Kain. The Kain we had been seeing up to this point was in fact a manifestation of his dark half. Kain fights his dark half, much like Cecil did seventeen years prior, and wins. He then becomes a Holy Dragoon.

 

    We then get some of that sweet, sweet Rydia. She, Luca, and Edge are on an airship in the underworld. Suddenly, or not so much if you played the Lunarians Tale, the Man in Black appears and takes over the airship, taking it towards Baron. Upon approach, the party sees meteors falling from the second moon. They get to Baron, and find it sealed by magic. They then travel the world looking for their lost friends. This part of the game really reminded me of the Planet of Ruin in Final Fantasy VI. You eventually run into Rydia, and proceed to hunt down each of her missing Eidolons. Once the control of the summons via the Mysterious Girl are broken, the party is finally able to enter Baron. Once the party frees Cecil from the Mysterious Girl,  the Man in Black reveals himself as Golbez. Cecil, while freed from the girl's grasp, is a little off. The party realizes that the second moon is going to crash into their planet, reducing everything to a molten ball of pain, and try to come up with ways to stop it. Enter the Lunar Whale! Baawwwwooooooaaapppp!!!! The party takes the Lunar Whale to, you guessed it, the new moon. You descend the hours long dungeons, fighting your way through enemies from the original Final Fantasy IV, and then throws us a curveball. We fight bosses from Final Fantasy I through VI!! WTF!!!!!!! You eventually encounter Cecil’s evil side, fight it, and Cecil returns to the light.


    Once you reach floor 1,000,000,000,000,000 of the dungeon, the party comes across a really freaky, FFIX esque room filled with multiple models of the Mysterious Girl being infused with what I can only assume is either Mako, or Mt. Dew. The Mysterious Girl comes from a race called the Maenads. They were each brought to be by the Creator, and their mission was to retrieve the crystals. The party descends deeper to discover this creator. He reveals that he comes from a race that died out due to failure to evolve, and he decided that he universe shouldn’t be overrun by inferior species. So, he did the only thing a logical Final Fantasy end boss could do. Create an intricate system of data gathering cameras in the form of crystals, and sent them around the universe to monitor life on the planets. He used these crystals to determine if the planet is evolving to its true potential. If it’s not up to par, he will destroy it. The Blue Planet did not reach the bar, as determined by James Cameron, and thus will be destroyed. Once this is revealed, he crushes the party. They are revived by the power of the crystals, and begin to wail on the Creators back door. Once they penetrate his pucker, we fight him. The moob form is fairly simple to destroy, but the ultimate form is another thing entirely. The party uses a crystal on him, and ultimately kills him, and flee the moon, rescuing the Maenad who explained their race to the party earlier. As the creator dies, he thanks the party for defeating him, and shows remorse for his actions. As he should, since the inhabitants of an inferior planet tore him to pieces. The party returns to their homes, Rydia adopts Maenad and names her Cuore, Edge’s ninjas continue to spy on everything, Cecil has Ceodore serve in the Red Wings under Kain, and also orders Baron’s airships disarmed and used to help rebuild the other kingdoms.

 

REMIXES:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGMku7bGwB4

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pOnJgWO8MBY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQ8QiTd2Baw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2SMrZjz28w

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xaLB5xHIjSs

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6AE0IJY5ZOI

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dhu0POCLfS0

Direct download: UFF_94_AfterYears_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we discuss the post Golden 2D RPG Era within Square, and Enix. 

History of Square-Enix - Part V

by Joseph DeGolyer

 

Last time we talked about the golden era of the 2D RPG, but it’s 1996 now in our timeline, and that can only mean one thing… 3 dimensions. But how exactly did we get to 3 dimensions? Well, we’re gonna have to spin back the clock another 10 years.

 

The Playstation began its life in 1986 as a joint venture between Nintendo and Sony (weird right? But this was before they were competitors). Nintendo wanted Sony to develop a CD ROM add-on for their SNES console that they would call the SNES-CD.

 

No one’s quite sure why, but the joint project never panned out. Some people cite behind-the-scenes drama between Ken Kutaragi (who some dub “the father of the playstation”) and some back-channel dealings with Nintendo. EIther way, Sony and Nintendo’s partnership would be over for now, and Sony would take the technology used on the SNES-CD, and use it to develop their own gaming console.

 

Sony briefly went to Sega to help develop the CD-centered technology, but Sega refused (mistake!!!!!!), and Sony was left to their own devices. Sony’s Play Station (two words) was announced in 1991, still made for SNES quality technology. At this, Nintendo filed a lawsuit on the claim that Nintendo still had the rights to the name “Play Station”, but as all the tech used was Sony’s, the judge refused Nintendo’s injunction.

 

Following the lawsuit, various deals with Nintendo were made and broken, and Sony, wanting to be free of Mario’s litigious grasp, did the only thing they could to get Nintendo off their backs: they changed the console from having the name “Play Station” (two words) to “Playstation” (one word).

 

At this point, Sony decided to beef up the system for a new generation of home consoles, focusing on the ability of the console to render 3D Polygons as opposed to 2D sprites.

 

In December of 1994 the Playstation console was released, selling 2 million units on launch and officially kicking the 5th generation of video game consoles into high gear (Sega’s system, the Sega Saturn sold 1/10th that of the Playstation only 2 months earlier). With this, CD’s were “in”, Sega was out, and a new console juggernaut was on the scene.

 

Of course, Nintendo would be back with a vengeance with their own 5th gen gaming console: The Nintendo 64.

 

The N64 was released in June of 1996 and would prove to be the defining system of the late-90’s. Sure, Sony had their fancy new CD tech, but Nintendo had the brand, and was already the publisher for many iconic games and game developers, including Square Co.

 

Many companies, including that of Enix, decided to begin publishing games for a variety of consoles, ostensibly to see what “stuck”, and initially published games for all 3 major systems at the time. They gave Saturn the games Nanatsu Kaze no Shima Monogatari and Nin Pen Man Maru in 1997, as well as Riven (the japanese version of the Sequel to the hit game “Myst”) and Nihondaihyō Chiimu no Kantoku ni Narou! in 1998.

 

Enix also gave a go on the N64 with the games Wonder Project J2: Koruro no Mori no Josette (1996)--a weird, culty, anime story “life-simulation” game-- and Mischief Makers (1997)--a side-scrolling platform game developed by “Treasure”, often seen as a forgotten N64 Classic--.

 

My only assumption is that the games didn’t sell all that well on either system, and after 1998, Enix would publish exclusively on the playstation (but we’ll get more into that next time).


Square’s transition into the 5th generation of consoles would be much more tumultuous, as we will see with the development of their next game: Final Fantasy VII.

Direct download: UFF_93_Historyofsquare5_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we humbly welcome one of our Patrons to the show! We discuss Brad's Final Fantasy origins, and his ranking within the Final Fantasy series. We discuss the series through his eyes, since he's been playing the series since Final Fantasy VI. He takes a very different approach to Final Fantasy VII, citing it around mid quality as a game. The main reasons for this is from coming off of Final Fantasy VI, he felt slightly disappointed. Brad has played his fair share of Final Fantasy XI, and Final Fantasy XIV as well, even being a legacy player in the latter title. Once we review his history with the Final Fantasy series, we play a round of Stump the Host, with Joe finally securing a well fought win over Brad. We then turn to the questions segment, discussing the Final Fantasy VII remake. Brad was quite skeptical of the remake, Joe was as well. Kaleb, on the other hand, has become soft on the idea of a Final Fantasy VII remake. Enjoy the grind!!

Direct download: UFF_92_Brad.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we bring back the popular Mythic Origins segment. We feature Mythic Origins of the Summons, Part Three. We dig into the origins of Yojimbo, Phoenix, and Golem. We then reminisce about the usefulness of each summon throughout the Final Fantasy series, and discuss what we hope the summons in Final Fantasy XV will turn out to be. We also discuss the rebirth of common summons throughout the series, and talk about ones lost, and how we would be interested in their resurrection. We then answer some great user submitted questions, and read a few stellar reviews. Enjoy the episode!



Yojimbo- Translates into Bodyguard. Appears in Final Fantasy X. The usage of this name for the summon is fairly effective, as you have to buy Yojimbo’s service from the get go, and then continue to pay him for each of his four moves. Diagoro, the dog of Yojimbo, will attack during the weakest of the attacks. Kozuka is the attack where Yojimbo throws multiple knives at enemies, where Wakizashi is the air slicing atttack. Then the Zanmato. The ultimate of the attacks. This is an attack that is borrowed from Odin. Odin’s was called Zantetsuken, but they’re essentially the same attack.

 

Phoenix- A Greek fire creature that is said to rise from it’s own ashes of demise around every 500 years. Phoenix is arguably one of the most useful summons in the series, yet I found myself rarely using the epic resrrection ability associated with summoning the creature.

 

Golem- From Jewish mythology. A Golem is a mud creature that is brought to life when a righteous person writes “emet”, or truth, onto its body. The most popular Golem was supposedly created by Rabbi Judah Loew in order to defend the Jews of the Prague Ghetto from antisemitic attacks, mainly for the Blood Libel. The blood libel is an accusation that Jews kidnap and murder christian Children to use their blood as part of their religious rituals during their holidays.

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6gbRe2AFbVQ

Direct download: UFF_91_mythicoriginssummons3_2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, Kaleb and Joe discuss their altered rankings for the Final Fantasy series. Rather than ranking the games in terms of what makes Final Fantasy great, they break it down even further. They discuss in depth which Final Fantasy games have the best story, combat, overall cast, music, and art. The results are quite different than one would expect, given the difference between this Final Fantasy list, and the one produced after the completion of Final Fantasy XIV. We then move on to revisit an old question from us to you, and move into this weeks, which deals with ranking the spinoff games in their own rite. Jump on the forums and vote! Enjoy the episode everyone!

 

REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bU7OKUnRxHc&feature=youtu.be

Direct download: UFF_90_lists_mixdown2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:15am MST

This week, Kaleb and Joe review Final Fantasy IV: Interlude, in all of it's two hour glory. We discuss the beauty of the Final Fantasy IV Complete Collection PSP port, and talk about how it nicely sets up the story for Final Fantasy IV: The After years. We release some nostalgia seed when it comes to the soundtrack, and gameplay that we've come to miss, and praise the entry on it's look. We will be setting up a stream for Final Fantasy IV: The After Years on Sunday, January 31st. Enjoy the episode, and welcome to season two of Ultima Final Fantasy, the ultimate.... Final Fantasy Podcast.


REMIX: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=brwp2rnRZcA

Direct download: uff_INTERLUDE_mixdown2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we bring you our retrospective episode on the Final Fantasy series as a whole. We go through each game, highlighting our overall experience of each Final Fantasy. We discuss the evolution of the series as a whole, covering which Final Fantasies naturally led into another, and which ones were one offs. We discuss the outstanding audio, visual, and storytelling elements of the series, and also discuss the leap to online Final Fantasy games, and whether or not they should have been numbered entries into the series. Enjoy the episode, and here's to the new season of Ultima Final Fantasy!

 

REMIX

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PUtJJLcQigw

Direct download: UFF_88_SeasonFinale.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

This week, we discuss the victors in the 2015 UFF Final Fantasy Podcast Awards. The categories were:

Best Rant

Best Impersonation

Best 2015 Final Fantasy Release

Best Ultima Final Fantasy Podcast Episode

Worst Ultima Final Fantasy Episode

Best Non-Wiki Final Fantasy Fan-Site

Best Competing Final Fantasy Show

Best Final Fantasy Parody Song

It was almost a Kaleb sweep, winning in Best Impersonation, Best Ultima Final Fantasy Podcast episode, not winning in Worst Ultima Final Fantasy episode. Joe pulled a victory in the Best Rant category, and the Best Final Fantasy Parody Song. We also would like to congratulate TheLifestream.net for sweeping the competing categories, winning both the Best Non-Wiki Final Fantasy Site, and Best Competing Final Fantasy show. We then move to weigh in on some user submitted questions.

Enjoy the Grind!!!

REMIX:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O8IBoFIFE-E

Direct download: UFFpodawards2015_mixdown2.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

Join us for the finale of our review of Final Fantasy XIV. This time, we cover the Gameplay elements leading up to the patch. We get Krinital and Judge Cloudprod to reveal their lists. We discuss the integration of the job systems, discuss the disconnect associated with the cut scenes, when you click through the dialogue material. We move on to cover the design of the game, comparing it to it's predecessor Final Fantasy XIII. We discuss the ups and downs of the games look, generally praising it's appearance, even if the quality is technically lessened. Now, comes the music. We highly praise his work with Final Fantasy XIV's soundtrack. It's both atmospheric, and memorable. We get our guests opinions on Final Fantasy XIV's place in the series as a whole. Then the list, and final ranking!

 

We're also doing our 2015 UFF Podcast awards! Check out our site and vote!

 

Direct download: FF14_part4.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

We made it! We finally finished Final Fantasy XIV up to Heavensward. Join us, Krinital, and Judge Cloudprod as we discuss the storyline associated with the four patches leading up to Final Fantasy XIV's first expansion, Heavensward. We also get Krinital's expert opinion on the game as a whole.

We have also started up the voting for the UFF 2015 Podcast awards, so get on our forums and nominate your favorite moments! Enjoy the episode!

Direct download: UFF_85_ff14part3_mixdown.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00am MST

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