Update: the race finished on day two! That means there will be no broadcasts on the third day, Sunday. Look out for a report on how it all unfolded on TLS in the next few days.
If you thought Final Fantasy VII was only a single-player game, think again. This weekend on The Lifestream, two of our members will play the game head to head as they race from “New Game” to “The End”.
There is a dedicated page for this race, which contains both players’ streams, so you can watch their progress, and a chat room for discussion. Both players will be in the chat room and will be able to field questions during their breaks.
The playing sessions will take place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, from 14:00 to 21:00 UTC each day. You can check what that is in your timezone here. Those seven hours include five and a half hours of playing, a few breaks, and around half an hour at the end to discuss it and answer any questions you might have.
Read on for the rules and the players.
The rules are straightforward: both players must start a new Final Fantasy VII game at the same time, after which they will race in real time to reach the end. Real time means that if one player gets a Game Over, for example, the other player can keep playing and pull ahead (or catch up). The first player can’t do anything except reload their game and try again. In that way, it’s not the in-game clock that matters, but the real-life one. That brings up all sorts of strategical decisions which have to be made. Is it worth taking thirty seconds to save the game ahead of a boss, or is it a small enough risk to not save? Is it worth fighting random battles to gain EXP, AP, items and Gil, to make the game easier, or should they just be escaped?
In this case, neither player has done any speed running before, but they both know the game of Final Fantasy VII inside and out. They are:
24 years old, from Finland
TLS member since January 2012
Day 2 progress: finished*
22 years old, from Scotland
TLS member since June 2009
Day 2 progress: finished
* Flintlock continued playing after the day’s scheduled play had finished to reach the end of the game.
There will be a bot in the IRC channel, known as Sephibot, who will be responsible for timekeeping. He will tell us when to start, when to take breaks, and when to stop. At the end of each day, we will keep playing until we reach the next save point which would normally come up in the game. If we’re in a town, for example, we don’t have to run outside to save on the world map immediately; instead we can continue until we have done everything we want to do in the town. It’s inevitable that one player will have to make their final save for the day slightly before the other, so the following morning they will be given a head-start of equal length to compensate for it.
One final note: we may not need all the available time on Sunday, depending on how long it takes us to complete the game.
We hope you’ll be able to join us!