FFXV story/spoiler discussion thread.

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#51
Limited POV is one of the things written works still do much, much better then visual mediums (movies, video games) do. It's possible to have a bunch of different POVs in one work and make it obvious who knows things vs. who doesn't becasue often times it's obvious who's POV parts of the story is being told from.

With visual mediums, the POV isn't from any of the characters, but from an outside observer. So if the POV is supposed to be different, there has to be a visual way to indicate who's POV it's from which isn't that easy to do. Changing mediums for different POVs does work though.

I kinda get the idea from this thread that if FFXV were a novel, it would only be one book with a different POV for each chapter.
In this case, the PoV is limited to your whole group when they're all together. It's only limited to Noctis when other people happen to leave the group, which is why I talk about the game ultimately being from Noctis' PoV, and I think that it works well because the only time you have flashes of information of anything NOT from Noctis & Co's view are the few times when you see Luna writing to him, or a VERY brief moment of her & her brother talking when someone tells you about it after the fact. I think that so long as you're aware of that, it's very apparent that they story is being told to the characters and not to the player.

If XV were delivered in a written medium I think that there would just be different books. In XV, all of the 14 chapters would still be from Noctis' PoV, because that's VERY much what makes his story work. There would be other books for the other characters' journeys – much like Kingsglaive is separate because it exists in the same world but in a very different location and group. That's why I suggested other characters' content as DLC that's distinctly separate from the main game.




X :neo:
 

Blade

That Man
AKA
Darkside-Ky/Mimeblade
#52
I have one question ONLY: why the hell is Square Enix so goddamn tragic?

I'd add more words and weight behind that question, but SE isn't the only one to blame.

I've seen a lot of Japanese games, movies, and manga that got 'popular' because they played the Tragedy card, but their twisted 'love' for tragedy feels like a disease in and of itself. Like Japan-made games breathe the stuff.

Well, at least I know what "The Memories Lie in the Slumber" really means...

(I swear I am TOTALLY motivated to make a better game than this now...)

Also, Nintendo called, they want their gimmicks back!
 

Lex

Administrator
#53
X, I don't buy what you're selling. I'd like to, but the fact is there are too many cutaway cutscenes at the beginning and end of chapters early on (Iedolas and conversations etc) that show you outside the core 4's limited PoV for what you're saying to be the actual truth. They needed to continue that for the narrative to make sense.

I want to make it clear that I think there's an excellent plot in there, but it's very poorly executed, particularly from Altissia onward. There's a way to do limited PoV without sacrificing sense. I like the overall plot. I don't mind things happening off screen. I mind Luna being a shit character that's impossible to properly invest in. I mind the apparent revelation that Ravus isn't a cunt which very much feels like a last-minute change in story direction, whether it was intended that way or not. I mind that I'm expected to care that
old-hotel-dude dies when he had zero impact whatsoever. I mind that my reaction to Luna being killed was shock but no real sadness because the game gave me no opportunities to actually care about Luna. I mind that while I thought the ending was brilliant and got emotional, Luna appears in what's supposed to be the final deathblow on our feels and I'm supposed to buy this love between them when I don't.

All of that could be easily remedied by more exposition, and the tl;dr is that I don't buy the explanation that the limited PoV was a narrative choice even a little bit, because they provided at least some of that exposition up until a point then just stopped bothering. Not to "create a sense of" anything, but because they didn't have a fucking clue what they were doing XD. The leaks I read a long time ago were all correct, and they also said they had no clue what they were doing with the overall story which was chopped and changed and not finalised as late as July this year. So I'm not remotely shocked that it's a bit of a mess.

I also don't care, because I still had an amazing time with the game. I'm still playing it now :monster:
 

Blade

That Man
AKA
Darkside-Ky/Mimeblade
#54
^Honestly the executive decisions for this game tell a more interesting plot than the story alone can. :monster:

That said, I've begun to use my portable mp3 player more frequently in this game, especially post Chapter 13, which felt like a huge FF6 reference. Listen to Kefka's Tower in the Fortress and you'll feel the same vibe.

FF1 Sunken Shrine in the Party of 3 Chapter as well... yikes the references.
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#55
X, I don't buy what you're selling. I'd like to, but the fact is there are too many cutaway cutscenes at the beginning and end of chapters early on (Iedolas and conversations etc) that show you outside the core 4's limited PoV for what you're saying to be the actual truth. They needed to continue that for the narrative to make sense.
The one with Iedolas are establishing things for the player that the main characters would already have some level of awareness of growing up at war with the Empire that the player doesn't have any background for until those elements present themselves within the game. To be fair, this is me coming out of 60 hours of playing it over about a week, so if you can mention specifics where that isn't the case I'd gladly reevaluate.

I want to make it clear that I think there's an excellent plot in there, but it's very poorly executed, particularly from Altissia onward. There's a way to do limited PoV without sacrificing sense. I like the overall plot. I don't mind things happening off screen. I mind Luna being a shit character that's impossible to properly invest in. I mind the apparent revelation that Ravus isn't a cunt which very much feels like a last-minute change in story direction, whether it was intended that way or not. I mind that I'm expected to care that
old-hotel-dude dies when he had zero impact whatsoever. I mind that my reaction to Luna being killed was shock but no real sadness because the game gave me no opportunities to actually care about Luna. I mind that while I thought the ending was brilliant and got emotional, Luna appears in what's supposed to be the final deathblow on our feels and I'm supposed to buy this love between them when I don't.
To be honest, I very much liked how it went from Altissia onwards, specifically because it seemed to be an intentional departure from the things that came before and it made you look back longingly on roaming with the bros when things were still more carefree.

Jared's death actually got me pretty good because it's the first example of Noctis being a danger from his presence alone and his inability to save everyone who's looking out for him. Despite all of your abilities, you're powerless to be everywhere and protect everyone at once. The fundamental difficulty with Luna is that she's been a captive on Tenebrae for 12 years, hasn't seen Noctis since she was a child, and is off on her own journey parallel to his that he doesn't know about, and gets killed right when they almost meet up. Her death is meant to be shock and disappointment. Also, she and Noctis have had their destinies intertwined since they were kids, and I believe in that commitment to one another as the clear example of love, not necessarily focused on their relationship as a romance – especially because of the distance and other things that the experienced.

All of that could be easily remedied by more exposition, and the tl;dr is that I don't buy the explanation that the limited PoV was a narrative choice even a little bit, because they provided at least some of that exposition up until a point then just stopped bothering. Not to "create a sense of" anything, but because they didn't have a fucking clue what they were doing XD. The leaks I read a long time ago were all correct, and they also said they had no clue what they were doing with the overall story which was chopped and changed and not finalised as late as July this year. So I'm not remotely shocked that it's a bit of a mess.

I also don't care, because I still had an amazing time with the game. I'm still playing it now :monster:
I'll have to hand that to you, because I'm just finding out anything about the game and or its development process up until now, so yes. Speaking purely from my own 60 hour and finally beat it playthrough and my complete lack of knowledge of how XIII-VS came to be XV or any of that. So yes. It's apparently more than possible/likely that it was because development was a bit of a mess, but I think that all of the content and stuff is there, even if it wasn't delivered in a helpful way like it could/should've been and apparently might eventually be with the fixes to the narrative flow.

I too, ultimately don't care, because I'll happily replay it when they fix things – especially if I can do it as NG+ so all-in-all, I ain't even mad. Not one bit. (Plus, it lets me chew and speculate on things and get to feel extra awesome if I'm right about them if/when it IS fixxxed).



@Blade: The JENOVA theme was playing at the start of Chapter 3 for me, because it happened to be running in the Regalia at the time, and it was PERFECT. Also, I think that tragedy is generally an easy emotion to make epic stories from, and lets endings be more open with, "things are kinda fixed now" rather than, "this is why everything is happy and perfect in the end" that demands more specifics.




X :neo:
 

Lex

Administrator
#56
The one with Iedolas are establishing things for the player that the main characters would already have some level of awareness of growing up at war with the Empire that the player doesn't have any background for until those elements present themselves within the game. To be fair, this is me coming out of 60 hours of playing it over about a week, so if you can mention specifics where that isn't the case I'd gladly reevaluate.
Not just Iedolas, evil!Ravus, Ardyn etc. They're pretty consistent at showing conversations/ plot moments completely outside the knowledge of our core 4 up until a certain point. I posted my screenshot of my final playtime image thing in the other thread, I finished around the 68 hour mark in exactly one week so our experiences in that respect should be very similar.

Jared's death actually got me pretty good because it's the first example of Noctis being a danger from his presence alone and his inability to save everyone who's looking out for him. Despite all of your abilities, you're powerless to be everywhere and protect everyone at once. The fundamental difficulty with Luna is that she's been a captive on Tenebrae for 12 years, hasn't seen Noctis since she was a child, and is off on her own journey parallel to his that he doesn't know about, and gets killed right when they almost meet up. Her death is meant to be shock and disappointment. Also, she and Noctis have had their destinies intertwined since they were kids, and I believe in that commitment to one another as the clear example of love, not necessarily focused on their relationship as a romance – especially because of the distance and other things that the experienced.
Please explain to me why she's the only person on Eos without Noctis's phone number. I realise that's slightly facetious of me to say but the game needed more moments of them communicating in a real way as adults beyond a couple of lines in a book every now and then, captive or not. She was allowed to write notes to him in a book and she spent a bunch of time with Gentiana, explain to me how she couldn't get her hands on a phone lol

I'll have to hand that to you, because I'm just finding out anything about the game and or its development process up until now, so yes. Speaking purely from my own 60 hour and finally beat it playthrough and my complete lack of knowledge of how XIII-VS came to be XV or any of that. So yes. It's apparently more than possible/likely that it was because development was a bit of a mess, but I think that all of the content and stuff is there, even if it wasn't delivered in a helpful way like it could/should've been and apparently might eventually be with the fixes to the narrative flow.
I mean yeah, the fact that they're adding more scenes in now should tell you all you need to know :/. It kind of flies in the face of your "narrow PoV in the second half to induce certain feelings in the player" theory (a theory I like and wish were true) considering they're specifically adding scenes to the second half of the game to show stuff that should have been shown in the first place.
 

Lord Noctis

Harbinger of Darkness
AKA
Caius Ballad
#57
I quite like the plot of this game. Its certainly shorter than I thought, maybe a bit to short, but I like the world that was crafted, and I like most of the characters. I like the contrast between the carefree first half, and the dark and oppressive second half. So, I'm not gonna put any huge spoilers in this post, but there will be some overall spoilers from throughout the whole game in my post.

Ardyn Izunia was a great villain to me. His voice actor really helps with that, but its also because he just feels so mysterious throughout most of the plot, and when he finally does reveal anything about himself, its just enough to work within the plot while still leaving an aura of mystery around him.

I understand a lot of people didn't like chapter 13, but I loved it. It was like the game just stopped being an action rpg and became a straight up horror game for a solid two hours. I was consistently tense and on edge throughout this section of the game. The sense of isolation, of being hunted, of being at the mercy of a madman whose only real goal at the time seems to be tormenting you as much as he can, whether it be verbally, or by flooding the halls with toxic gas. Honestly, it was one of my favorite parts of the game. Still, I hear that they plan to update this section to address the issues most people have with it, so maybe me and the people that didn't like this part will both get what we want in the end.

I've also heard that there are going to be updates added in to flesh out the stories of Luna, Ravus, and Aranea. While I buy into the notion of the game being a story from Noctis' pov, fleshing out those other characters would be a welcome thing, and might add some much needed meat to the plot. I haven't looked to deeply into this yet though, so I'm not completely sure if that's a thing that's actually happening.

Also, while the Leviathan fight, and the flying part of the Ardyn fight were a bit to easy and simple, I love the concept from a story perspective.

So, to sum up, I like the plot and characters of the game and had a great time with both, but I kinda agree with people who thinks it needs to be fleshed out a bit more as well.

Also, the soundtrack is hands down the best non Nobuo Uematsu soundtrack the series has ever had.
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#58
Not just Iedolas, evil!Ravus, Ardyn etc. They're pretty consistent at showing conversations/ plot moments completely outside the knowledge of our core 4 up until a certain point. I posted my screenshot of my final playtime image thing in the other thread, I finished around the 68 hour mark in exactly one week so our experiences in that respect should be very similar.
The only thing that I immediately recall taking place away from our core 4 is the mass Imperial meeting showing them in their cabal meeting (which helps to establish what things looked like at that point). This might also be because I did Chapters 1-4, Sidequested like Mad, and then did 5-14 the last two days. I'll go back and check out some things, but most interactions with everyone I recall as happening to or around out core 4.

Please explain to me why she's the only person on Eos without Noctis's phone number. I realise that's slightly facetious of me to say but the game needed more moments of them communicating in a real way as adults beyond a couple of lines in a book every now and then, captive or not. She was allowed to write notes to him in a book and she spent a bunch of time with Gentiana, explain to me how she couldn't get her hands on a phone lol
I think that in Kingsglaive Regis was surprised to know that Luna was even alive at all. I don't think that her and Noctis had really communicated much in that 12-year gap, and due to her arrival and departure, in Insomnia, I doubt she'd've had any way to get his phone number at that point, and I think that the sentimental nostalgia of their book communication was meaningful, and if she HAD called, Noctis would've put EVERYTHING on hold to immediately go to where she was and help her – which directly conflicts with her primary motivation of helping not draw the Empire to him and let him do that Regis planned for him. Again, I always saw their relationship and being committed to each other in their destined roles and less romantically in love, so I think that a lot of the sadness in that scene is Noctis not getting to have any of those moments because of it.

I also REALLY WANTED it, but not having it was part of the tragedy of the situation for me.

I mean yeah, the fact that they're adding more scenes in now should tell you all you need to know :/. It kind of flies in the face of your "narrow PoV in the second half to induce certain feelings in the player" theory (a theory I like and wish were true) considering they're specifically adding scenes to the second half of the game to show stuff that should have been shown in the first place.
Well that also depends on how those scenes are implemented as to whether or not it, "kind of flies in the face of <my> 'narrow PoV in the second half to induce certain feelings in the player' theory" so I'll have to wait and see what the changes ultimately DO bring.

But yes, flawed though things may be I still love the bajeezis out of this game all over.




X :neo:
 

Tashasaurous

Tash for Short
AKA
Sailor Moon, Mini Moon, Hotaru, Cardcaptor Sakura, Meilin, Xion, Kairi, Aqua, Tifa, Aerith, Yuffie, Elena, Misty, May, Dawn, Casey, Fiona, Ellie
#59
The plot was a little so so I have to admit, but still pretty good none the less and I enjoyed it. WAAAAY better than FF13's storyline hands down, that's for sure.

In a way, it reminded me a mixture of Final Fantasy VI, Final Fantasy VII and Final Fantasy X with an ending that is sad but also a perfect way to end it without much of a cliff-hanger.

I am wondering what became of Noctis's friends after he left them to sacrifice himself to save the world while they fended off the Daemons(that name is the name of the monsters of season 3 of Sailor Moon, by the way), but since they weren't seen with Noct and Luna, my guess is that they're still alive and are helping to rebuild the world and the world itself starting from scratch to find new kings and things like that.

Also, the soundtrack is hands down the best non Nobuo Uematsu soundtrack the series has ever had.
The soundtrack for this game is done by Yoko Shimomura who also does the Kingdom Hearts franchise soundtracks. She is by far one of the best Composers on Earth.
 

Blade

That Man
AKA
Darkside-Ky/Mimeblade
#60
As of right now I'm playing these side quests with a huge friggan knot in my gut.

Also the radio stations stop 'news updates' which makes it all the more eerie and unsettling.

I try to play cheerful songs in the car but it's like trying to get a bad nightmare to go away.

Thanks alot, Squeenix, you troll-bastards! I feel like I got punk'd.

A decades long practical joke.

If you'll excuse me, I'll go cry in FF Valhalla (Dissidia) where all the protagonists end up after Squeenix kills them off!
 
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The Twilight Mexican

Ex-SeeD-ingly good
AKA
TresDias
#61
You guys may have already guessed this, but when Bahamut explains that the Lifestream-looking place Noctis finds himself in is "The heart of the Crystal, wherein lies the soul of the star," what he refers to as "the star" is &#26143;, i.e. hoshi, in Japanese; the word used for celestial bodies in general. It can mean "star," but can also refer to planets -- and, indeed, is what everyone in FFVII refers to that game's planet by. So, he's apparently saying that the Crystal houses the soul/Lifestream of Eos. :monster:

Which makes sense.

Bahamut, referring to Ardyn, says that the Immortal Accursed is "A man cursed with life eternal, whose immortality stems from the selfsame scourge that wrought the daemons. One so impure of body and soul was deemed unworthy of the Crystal's Light, and forbidden to ascend." This echoes ideas like Aerith in Maiden Who Travels the Planet telling Hojo's spirit that what he had done to himself with Jenova would prevent him from merging with the Lifestream.

However,
back in Chapter 9, Luna told Ardyn "When the prophecy is fulfilled, all in thrall to darkness shall know peace," and so in the ending of this game we see something very similar to the ending of FFVII. There, Cloud confronted Sephiroth in the Lifestream and his spirit launched a flurry of attacks against Sephiroth's own, which was defying assimilation back into the Lifestream. Defeated, this was followed by Sephiroth's malicious will seemingly being neutralized and his spiritual essence diluted into the greater soul of the planet.

"His mind twisted by spite and bent on revenge, the Usurper came to bring darkness down upon our world." That's Bahamut talking about Ardyn (who you may have noticed likes to walk around carrying a large black wing to one side), but it could easily be an apt description of Sephiroth in FFVII and Advent Children. Not surprisingly then, Luna is his Aerith, both because she was murdered by him about halfway through the game and because she lends a hand in purifying his negative spiritual essence.

Echoing Maiden again (where Aerith's spirit purified lost souls of their guilt), as well as Lifestream White of the On the Way to a Smile novellas (where Aerith's spirit learned to heal corrupted Lifestream tainted by Sephiroth's essence), Luna's spirit shows up in that same metaphysical space where Noctis met Bahamut to begin the process of purifying Ardyn's soul right before Noctis unleashes an Omnislash-like attack that pretty overtly references the ending of FFVII or the conclusion to Cloud and Sephiroth's battle in Advent Children.

As in those cases, Ardyn's spirit is seemingly purified and absorbed back into the greater flow. At least until FFXV: Advent Children II comes along. :awesome:

No idea what the implications on Eos's cosmology of the Crystal's energy being infused into the Ring of the Lucii would be, though.

Which brings me to another point of observation, though I don't have any comments to make about it beyond pointing it out: The thing called the Crystal in the English script and normally referred to by the same word in Japanese (&#12463;&#12522;&#12473;&#12479;&#12523; is the English word "crystal" rendered in Japanese katakana, and its pronunciation is an approximation of how it's pronounced in English) is referred to by Bahamut as the &#32854;&#30707; in Japanese. That's "Holy Stone," the same term used for the Zodiac Stones in FFTactics.

Anyway, obviously there are other references at work here, probably even with these same characters. There are traces of not just Sephiroth, but also Kefka in Ardyn. I just thought these parts that relate back to FFVII would be worth highlighting.

EDIT (this part not under a spoiler tag like the stuff above because it really doesn't spoil anything): Huh. There's another unexpected (but not entirely) reference. What the English script calls "daemons" is &#12471;&#12460;&#12452; in the Japanese. This is the same word that was used in FFXIII's Japanese script for what the English script called "Cie'th," though it was rendered there like so: &#12471;&#39608;. I wonder if this term's presence is an artifact from when XV was Versus XIII and part of the Fabula Nova Crystallis.
 
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Tetsujin

Ready for the mosh pit, shaka brah
AKA
Tets
#62
My biggest worry about this game was that the plot would suffer from the open world structure and from it being a Frankenstein's monster version of Nomura's Versus and Tabata's XV.

I feel I was right. :monster:

It reminded me of my time with MGSV: TPP.
Open world game that I had a blast with but with a weak and gutted story that was ultimately disappointing.
At least FFXV had enjoyable main characters imo that made up for it to some degree though.

I have a lot of thoughts and maybe I'll not be lazy later on and write them all down.

I wish we would've gotten Stella.

Edit:

How sad is it this is probably the best trailer for FFXV...and none of that shit truly made the cut outside a watered down (no pun intended) version of the Leviathan battle?

 
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X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#66
All of this makes me exponentially more glad that I had continually ignored basically all everything XIII-Vs or XV related, and only binged Brotherhood, Omen, & Kingsglaive before playing the game.

I had zero presuppositions or idea of what I would be getting from the game before playing it aside from the things that were supposed to be connected to it by the time it was released.





X :neo:
 

Tetsujin

Ready for the mosh pit, shaka brah
AKA
Tets
#67
I should really ignore trailers too. I felt like there was barely anything in XV that I hadn't already seen (and of course the things I expected to see but didn't make the cut).
All the locations, summon setpiece battles etc.
Media blackout for XVI it is then.

And for VIIR of course, don't wanna spoil any character deaths or anything :desucait:

The biggest offender to me is the game's prologue however - starting in medias res with older Noctis etc just spoils what could've been a cool unexpected surprise.
I don't even know what the intention here was. It just starts, lets you walk forward for three seconds and immediately interrupts you with a short cutscene and then that's that. It doesn't even serve as a gameplay tutorial or anything.

40 - 50 hours later you learn how you got there but having seen that moment prior doesn't really add much to the story of "how we got there" which is what a good application of In Medias Res should do.

It's just giving players a "WTF" moment at the start of the game for no reason other than to have it.
 

X-SOLDIER

Harbinger O Great Justice
AKA
X
#68
The biggest offender to me is the game's prologue however - starting in medias res with older Noctis etc just spoils what could've been a cool unexpected surprise.
I don't even know what the intention here was. It just starts, lets you walk forward for three seconds and immediately interrupts you with a short cutscene and then that's that. It doesn't even serve as a gameplay tutorial or anything.

40 - 50 hours later you learn how you got there but having seen that moment prior doesn't really add much to the story of "how we got there" which is what a good application of In Medias Res should do.

It's just giving players a "WTF" moment at the start of the game for no reason other than to have it.
Agreed on that point, especially because
any FF fan can figure out that it's Ifrit before his actual appearance, and it cuts out the gutting tension from Chapter 13 about Prompto dying or never getting back together with your bros – which was one of my favourite things.

Seriously, the small issue of the Ring of the Lucii not really holding up to its exceptional but draining power notwithstanding, the overbearing tiresome dread of that part of the game and the isolation was just fantastic.




X :neo:
 

lithiumkatana17

Pro Adventurer
AKA
Lith
#69
I've viewed XV and its developement the same way I'd normally view a movie; there's things that are filmed (in this rendered) and are stuck in lots of trailers for the world to gawk at, but in the end the just don't make the final cut. (I'm looking at you, LOTR :watchingu)

Luckily for us, we have a lot more than just snippets of scenes; we have whole trailers of stuff that didn't make the cut for us to hoard and archive. Or am I the only one that does that sort of thing? :closedmonster:
 

Blade

That Man
AKA
Darkside-Ky/Mimeblade
#72
I agree with the notion that Stella would have been the better choice:

-Noct's Rival
-An excuse for Noct to wear a tux
-A more coherent Romeo/Juliet feel
-Counter-Armiger (imagine Noct with 26 weapons instead of 13)!?
-Someone who actually MET Noct in-game and talked with him
-Where the hell did that Amano Painting go?
 
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