Every single time I make slightly (read: extremely) negative tweets about FF9 I get swarms of responses all pretty much saying “What? I love that game!” Occasionally “Yeah, I know the battle system is slow but…” So you know the core game part of a game has issues but you still love it? Well, that sure is the magic of these games and why FF fans are more likely to get into a ranking battle than DQ fans[ref]That and there are five DQ fans in the world.[/ref]
But it is not just the slow, slow, slow, slow battle system of FF9 that is making it a slog for me. There is the Active Time Event interruptions that enrich the story yet at the same time drag out certain events.
Seems like I am spending a lot of time on something I dislike, eh? Well, the music is nice. And there is something to about trying to figure out one’s feelings, since as I make these complaints about the game none of them feel so solid that even I understand why I dislike the game so much.
One complain i saw leveraged towards FF13 was that it tried too hard to be a Final Fantasy game, and yet that seems to apply here all the more. FF9’s tag-line was even something like “The crystals return.” which after three crystal-less Final Fantasy games, seemed like an “Oh neat!” but ended up not feeling all that important at all. (Another reason I am replaying the game. I cannot even remember the crystals being in this game.) There are homages stuffed in every corner, and they are cute and tickle me in that way but something is still fundamentally missing. And I keep playing this game to try to figure out what it is.