Mako revisits Dissidia Final Fantasy 012 Duodecim


Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
Smooth Criminal
So, after beating Stranger of Paradise and doing the last DLC, seeing Emperor Mateus again reignited my passion to play Dissidia again.

The original iteration of Dissidia.. Not the... Arcade team battler version we got from Team Ninja.

The last time I played this game was back in like 2011. So, I decided to revisit and share some thoughts from playing. Kinda inspired by @Tetsujin and their thread with FFXV :monster:

Right off the bat, I'm already hit with nostalgia turning the game on because the Mognet keeps track from your last time of booting up the game and the moogles act surprised that it's you given the amount of time it's been. My bonus day was apparently Saturday, which makes sense. Just by dabbling in quick battle, I can tell I'm rusty as fuck so I figure the story mode *probably* is the best place to try to regain my rhythm for this game and reteach myself the basics.

So when I first played this, I hadn't played FFXIII yet, so I sorta... Had absolutely no proper reference to Lightning's storyline here or anything. And now, having played through FFXIII, it's pretty interesting to see this again.

Also, I somehow completely forgot they added a fucking world map to this version of Dissidia. I completely forgot it was no longer just a board game. That really fucking rocks. And it's based on FF1's world too. Jeez, what a glow up this game is compared to the original Dissidia lol...

Lightning being pissed off about being pulled into the whims and wars of gods from another world, when she's already been there and done that *really* makes sense! :awesomonster:

So in the 12th iteration of this cycle, the warriors of Cosmos are tasked with finding their crystal, except... This is pretty difficult given the fact manikins have decided to crash the party in World B and they act as an unending horde of enemies that Chaos' warriors can sic on the heroes, denying them direct confrontation with their respective opponents which is an integral part of the whole "manifest your crystal" mission they were given.

In fact, right from the jump, poor Lightning, Yuna, Jecht, Tifa, Vaan, Laguna, and Kain get separated due to a manikin ambush and now have to try to rendezvous for safety. Lightning thankfully stays close to Tifa, Vaan, and Laguna, and she even straight up murders Kuja who showed up talking crazy only to get his ass packed up and sent straight to hell. Which is funny to me cuz Kefka just stood there and watched his ally literally just die.

He didn't even try to pull up at all when he saw him struggling! What's funny was he was just talking about getting Chaos warriors who were not eagerly in the fight to get off the bench and play, so apparently he did that... Just to get Kuja killed? LMFAO He literally goaded Kuja to fight just so he could die and watch it. What a demon, no honor whatsoever.

"Lightning with no sky in which to hide... No choice now but to fulfill your destiny... And fall." Ngl, that's a pretty cold line to say to someone named "Lightning." Real creative. Too bad he got his ass folded after saying this. :awesome:

Lightning's playstyle was already pretty awesome given she can literally change her entire moveset based on her paradigm and now knowing the reference its even cooler. I can see why she was one of my favorites to use back in the day.

It really cannot be understated what a cold bitch Kefka is though. LOLing at Kuja while he faded away and talking about how he won't remember a thing and how he'll fill his head with fucked up memories and shit. What a monster.

So Lightning gets separated again and has been wandering about, smashing manikins and....Oh, it's Kain! She's finally found a friend!

Annnnd he's standing over a body. And it's Bartz! That's not suspicious at all :awesome:

"Bartz! Oh no, someone's got him??"-Lightning


Yeah, someone got him alright.

"Kain...You... why did you...?"

I hate that my brain automatically began to think of "Among Us" here. Kain clearly would play a terrible imposter, killing his teammates but leaving them alive long enough to weakly tell on how he speared them out of nowhere. While listening to Bartz, Kain tried to impale Lightning from behind, but obvious she dodged and was like, "GET THAT WEAK SHIT OUTTA HERE." So she fights him off and he flees with the body of Bartz in tow.

Lightning is naturally pissed at this and thinks Kain's gone psycho. I mean, this nutjob Dragoon is killing folks and carrying their bodies away. What would you think?

The Chaos Warriors are straight up dicks in this story. They literally treating this cycle as easy-mode, not even bothering to properly fight their rivals or anyone really, just showing up going, "Haha, scrubs. You ain't gonna see no damn crystals cuz the manikins are just gonna wash you out and when you die, you die for good cuz they don't stop." Garland just shows up to gloat at Lightning and talk trash.

So Lightning makes it back to base with Cosmos and fills in the poor goddess about the shitshow going outside, Kain going schizo, and sure enough, the one guy she hates most, Warrior of Light is there too. Cause why wouldn't be guarding his waifu? :monster:

Also Jecht suddenly dies and Cosmos feels it.

"We keep taking orders from you, and we can forget about the crystals. We won't last that long! Of all the stupid things to die for..." And this is why I love Lightning. Just straight up telling a goddess she's trash and doesn't know a damn thing about what she's doing here. Keep it at 100 Lightning, ilu. :monster:

And then Warrior of Light drops a truth bomb. He says the war isn't winnable with the unending horde of enemies. And then he points his sword at Lightning! Lightning is obviously not gonna take this shit, so she squares up and points her sword right back. Calling his ass the second traitor, and questioning who the hell he even is, lolol. Warrior of Light then basically goes, "Don't worry about that, just go to sleep" LOLOL So they scrap and Cosmos pleads with them to lay down their swords.

And Warrior of Light comes clean. Kain and him came to the realization that this cycle was shot and if things kept up, the heroes would just die permanently fighting manikins, but... If they were to be killed by fellow Cosmos warriors, and then kept safe until the cycle ended, they could be reincarnated the next go round, and not suffer permanent defeat. So Kain figured he'd clean up the warriors, get them prepared for the next cycle, and avoid the whole mess all together.

Makes sense! Too bad they didn't share it with the others though, right? :monster:

Lightning is obviously pissed about not being kept in the loop, and she doesn't even know that this whole war has happened multiple times in a row and she decides that rather than "go to sleep", she wants to fight and deal with the threat of the manikins now, because even if it were left for next cycle, the manikins would still be around, thereby nullifying their efforts in the first place.

And so Lightning's part ends.

I like this part because it definitely ties back into the practical thinking Lightning has and exhibits in FFXIII. Given her refusal to follow destiny and just follow the cycle that's thrust upon her, she'd rather take matters into her own hands and do something now. Even though Lightning doesn't fully remember everything from her world, she definitely remembers gods suck ass and hating being told what to do. God bless her.

So Vaan gets separated after meeting up with Lightning and suddenly he sees a girl who looks like she's just staring off into space... And when he sees her, she just goes, "GRAGH, COSMOS WARRIOR! MUST DESTROY!" and sure enough, it's Terra. Cuz Terra was originally a Chaos warrior, and she's brainwashed and crazy thanks to Kefka and Chaos.

....Chaos clearly got first pick of the pawns, cuz he really made sure to add the most broken or badass mofos to his team. He made sure to pick up Terra, Cloud, Sephiroth, Tidus, Ultimecia...he just... Went for the most broken or popular characters while Cosmos got left with everyone not a villain. LMAO it ain't easy being Team Harmony apparently....

So Vaan holds off the berserk brainwashed magically lady and she finally flies off. Then he wanders some more and sees her again getting berated by Kefka. Now, people talk smack about Vaan being useless and sorta superfluous to FFXII's story (and ngl, there's some truth to that) but this dude's game is on point.

While Kefka is just berating and punishing this poor girl, he just pulls up and goes, "Holup. You ain't fixin' to just torture this girl here, bro. Square up."

Kefka's response to this is just classic badass.

"Who? What? When-where-why?"

"In case you didn't hear me the first time, I said leave that girl alone."

"In that case, PLAY DEAD."

Then they fight. :monster:

Afterwards Kefka goes,

"And here I thought you were just another prepubescent pretty boy... Incredible! That was the most fun I had in minutes!" LMAO

Vaan holds his own, and then... He just pulls the chad move of *grabbing* Terra's hand, runs and shouts over his shoulder, "We'll finish this next time. For now, I'm just gonna take the girl. Catch you later!"

...And Kefka just waves and says its been a pleasure. Before realizing WTF is going on. LOLOL, Vaan was so smooth he even got Kefka to go along with it. His crazy ass can't even keep track of the shit he's doing sometimes. This blew me away and I couldn't believe how Kefka legit just dgaf LOLOL

So Vaan travels with Terra, protecting her and getting her to realize she has worth beyond just being a tool of destruction and chaos. So he gets her to embrace her desire *not* to fight, and tells her to hide in the Interdimensional Rift castle. He says to hide until it's all over, and then he'll come find her and get her to be a warrior of Cosmos. Ngl, that's a pretty big promise to make but apparently it happened cuz we know in the next iteration she's on the Cosmos side so, bro must've had some mad connections after all!

Vaan's story was short as hell, but I guess you can only do so much with a character like him. That's fine, we can move on :awesome:

Laguna's story is also pretty short, but he featured prominently in Lightning's scenario too. If Lightning is the tactical leader of the heroes with her badass fighting prowess and military strategy, Laguna's the heart of the group in terms of his emotional intelligence and ability to keep the team on the same page. Game really does a great job showing this in the text dialogue interactions between the group.

Bro can't find himself out of a paperbag but he knows how to disarm conflict and keep people in high spirits. He's just a bro of the highest order.

So now he's out in the world map alone, and trying to figure out if this is the first time he's been to this spot... Or if he's been there before. ROTFL this man literally would die if his life depended on finding where he was.

And sure enough, Cloud of Darkness finds him. And decides today's the day he dies.

They fight and afterwards... Laguna.. See I remember this scene because it's fucking LOL.

It's like Laguna suddenly realizes that the living embodiment of the void is in the shape of a beautiful feminine figure and he's awe of it's beauty. And it causes Cloud of Darkness to pause, like..."...Is something wrong?"

So it got me wondering... Did no one like, ever comment or react to the fact Cloud of Darkness is a beautiful, scantily clad individual or something? Has that never been a reaction it's gotten while confronted in the world of FFIII? Because it appeared genuinely perplexed at his reaction. And Laguna blushes and gets nervous as he looks at it and just...ROTFLMAO he gets a leg cramp. The leg cramp thing... Just like he got when he met Julia and fell in love with her in FFVIII. LOLOLOL

And this...actually disarms Cloud of Darkness. LOL it literally just loses the urge to fight him and talks smack. But, amidst the smack talk, Cloud of Darkness drops some knowledge on him. CoD tells him what the manikins are, and where they can be found. These "abominations" come from the Interdimensional Rift from a portal that ExDeath cooked up and they're flooding wrecking havoc. If they managed to close the portal, they could stem the flow, and bring balance back to the war. However, it's dangerous asf because it'd be a suicide mission given the numbers flowing out from the Rift.

Laguna rightfully decides to head back to Cosmos with the intel so a proper decision can be made, and sure enough, he runs into Vaan along the way so they head back with the knowledge.

Laguna's storyline mode was hilarious asf and fun. He's not the kind of character I enjoy to play as though, but it was still a fun ride. Still kinda funny he somehow briefly won over the living embodiment of the void into spilling some intel just by being a huge awkward dork. :monster:

Got some more thoughts to share but I'll save them for another post. So far this is wildly entertaining. I almost totally forgot while I love this game :monster:

I've been playing the hell out of it for the past few days so I definitely got more thoughts to share lolol


Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
Smooth Criminal
Time to finish up the 12th Cycle.

I have to say, I truly forgot just how much fun this gameplay is. Like, goddamnit, this game is addicting. I have no clue what brand of cheap crack Nomura was smoking when he said he didn't want to revisit this gameplay style again when making a sequel to Dissidia, but he needs to put it down and find sobriety. :monster:

Huge L on his part.

I really don't want to turn this revisit into a pile on towards NT but man.... The one thing I will say in NT's defense is that I do enjoy the characters having their memories in that game and it gives much more fun interactions. And the boss battles against summons were incredibly fun. There's... a fun game inside NT when you have enough people to play but... The OG Dissidia still reigns supreme.

Nevertheless... Let's continue on.

What I always found interesting about Yuna's scenario is the fact that Yuna essentially has her memories of FFX, along with Jecht and they were actually traveling and interacting with each other. This is a rare thing in OG Dissidia... characters allowed to be themselves from their original game and not be purified facsimiles of their core character traits minus the context and memories of their origin. This has always been a sticking point for me with OG Dissidia so seeing that not being the case in Dissidia was...surprising back then.

As soon as Yuna clears the first gateway, in a strange turn of events, Jecht suddenly vanishes and finds himself in Dream Zanarakand's end. Something nefarious is afoot!

Yuna's in Pandemonium, confused and looking for her guardian. On a whim she whistles (for Tidus) hoping against hope he'd appear and suddenly....a shirtless Tidus just runs on by and bumps into Yuna. LOL talk about wish granting.

Tidus asking if he met Yuna before is hilariously surreal and depressing. So of course Yuna gives chase :monster:

Yuna's savvy in realizing he's a Warrior of Chaos given the fact he didn't appear in Order's Sanctuary at the start. And she resolves to talk sense into him if he's lost his memory or something. So off she goes! On the way through a gateway she meets with Zidane. He sure loves hooking up with summoners, doesn't he?

Actually that's inaccurate of me, Zidane finds something that catches his eye and has to leave Yuna's side so he bounces and Yuna exits the gate alone. Hmmm... I wonder what that's about...

::the sound of a spear penetrating flesh cries out from the distance::


Yuna finally catches up, with Jecht and we find him being confronted with his opponent. And it's at this point we once again are shown why Jecht has won multiple "Father of the Year" awards in Zanarkand.

Most parents would wilt under the oppressive pressure and emotional pain of having to fight their own child to the death... But Jecht? Hell fucking no. Tidus randomly showed up shirtless, and Jecht asks him what the hell he's doing here. LOL

Tidus's natural response is, "Taking you down, old man. What else would I be doing here?" Gotta say, seeing a malicious looking Tidus is quite the surprise. I will give credit in Dissidia showing us a Chaos aligned Tidus who's consumed with his desire to beat his dad in a darker, more obsessive way. I like it :monster:

Now like I said, a weaker parent would be torn up inside about the prospect of facing their own child in combat. Jecht holds no such weakness.

"Heh, is that it? They call you here to try and beat me, did they? You just can't get enough of following in my footsteps, can ya, boy!?"

Actually jabbing a sword straight into the inferiority complex of your own child.

King shit.

Jecht never stops winning. Ever. Father of the Fucking Year, right here.

"Stupid kid. Gone and gotten yourself brainwashed. Well you asked for it, you GOOD FOR NOTHING PUNK!" He fucking even realizes his son's been brainwashed and gives ZERO FUCKS about it. ROTFLMAO. Jecht still blames him for it and squares up. ROTFLMAO I don't know why I like this horrible man of a father but it's hilarious. This is family dysfunction on a meme level here.

Yuna thankfully intercedes and keeps this unhealthy family reunion from starting off, and begins talking sense into her guardian. Yuna begins to try to talk sense into Tidus so that he lets go of his hate and stops trying to murder his own father, and at first it seems to have no effect. Tidus even threatens to go through her, and Yuna basically goes, "lol no you won't." And Tidus gets disarmed. And just as he starts to regain his memories...

The muthaflippin' Emperor shows up and throws a Flare at Yuna. :awesome:

And Tidus throws himself in front of her and takes the fatal blast. Guess the Emperor's brave was skyhigh or something...

Tidus is dying while the Emperor goes on about how memories are better left forgotten, and seasoned warriors of Cosmos are troublesome, being able to stir dormant memories within others. Then he pulls the absolute dick move of gloating on how Tidus would fall trying to save another of his own enemies. Gotta love that dirtbag fabulous Emperor!

"If not for your meddling, we may have borne witness to a more ironic tragedy here." LOL it's truly an art form how mean the Emperor is. And he's a prodigy.

Yuna's quiet anger simply will not abide for such cruelty however the Emperor stops, notices that Jecht sacrificed his own Cosmos energy to save Tidus, and has now given up the ghost, leaving him an "empty vessel." Clearly the Emperor liked what he saw, so he swooped in, stole that hunk of a dude, and flew off :awesome:

And Yuna's left with a sleeping Tidus and confusion over the Emperor's sudden attachment to her Guardian :monster:

With this, we see why Seymour was ignored as a Warrior of Chaos. Because the Emperor spirited away Jecht's body with the intention of making him a Chaos warrior!

Yuna's panicking and then suddenly Vaan and Laguna show up. Laguna once again shows why he's real Dad material, calming the situation and helping Yuna get it together. :monster:

...Vaan is some hilarious comedic relief, offering the suggestion to punch Tidus to wake him up. Laguna goes, "I don't think kicking an unconscious person will help." And Vaan goes, "Hey, I never said to kick him." LOLOL wtf.

Yuna's story was interesting. One of the most interesting ones of the 12th Cycle story.

Now the next one is Kain Highwind. Our favorite Dragoon. No relation to Ricard, Cid, or Aranea Highwind.

So Kain's apparently being pursued by Manikins as he goes around offing his allies and hiding them in the desert of World B. I mean, that's smart... If you want to protect them from being permanently destroyed, you gotta protect their vessels so they can be purified upon the next cycle. So you gotta kill em, carry their corpses to your hideout, stuff them there, and repeat.

Kain's totally not a serial killer. Honest :awesomonster:

I'm sorry but I just love how the theme of "murder" just pursues Kain in whatever game he's in. First, getting brainwashed and wanting to kill Cecil for Rosa in FFIV. Then Kain's Lunar Trial in FFIV Advance, where his dark side commits murders in that illusory Baron and he has to either choose to embrace that darkness or fight it. And then there's his evil half that appeared in TAY thanks to him trying to become a Holy Dragoon.

Blood just follows him. I love it :monster:

So the reason Kain has come to this realization is thanks to Golbez giving him the deets on how the cycle repeats over and over, and the warriors get reborn each cycle, stripped of their memories. The more fresh a warrior is to the cycle, the less they remember of their past. However, Kain's been around for awhile, and so he has memories of his homework, while Cecil is far more amnesiac. Kain's vague memories give him some confirmation of Golbez's assessment, so he realizes that this whole "war" is a cyclical sham.

So yeah, Kain's trying to protect his future friends by killing them (not for realsies) and while doing his work, he runs into Firion! Poor innocent Firion... he won't know what skewered him.... Until the end...

"Firion, go on ahead without me."

"What's the matter, Kain?"

"I feel an enemy's presence behind us. We'll be in poor shape if we're surrounded."

"Understood. Leave the front to me."

"Very well, I'm counting on you. (Forgive me...)"


And while Kain is playing imposter, ExDeath's been watching this fool vent, and asks, "why the fuck you offing your own teammates yet refusing to work with Chaos, bro? You make zero sense!"

Kain of course tells ExDeath to STFU and get outta here with that. He's killing for a reason. For the future. And he's not selling out his friends. He's only killing them!

What comes next is one of the cleanest fucking intro dialogues of a Warrior of Cosmos in Dissidia.

ExDeath: So, you offer your life in exchange for theirs?

Kain: Of course not. I offer yours.


Kain's too fucking strong LMAO

ExDeath eventually runs off after calling forth a horder of Kain manikins, and Kain basically says "BRING IT." Intending to defend himself AND take Firion's body with him.

And with that, Kain's story is over. Now it's time for the last one before the finale.

Tifa's story is the most frustrating because she's basically a blank slate. She has close to zero memories, and does very little. Bless her heart, she doesn't even get to fight alongside Cloud or anything. She's just alone, fighting off manikins, and trying her best as a newbie Warrior of Cosmos. Like, her inclusion in Dissidia was so awesome but so little is actually DONE with her.

So after awhile of wandering, Tifa runs into Ultimecia. And Ultimecia's already throwin' shade, acting surprised there are survivors amongst the crew of Cosmos Warriors. Like, Ultimecia is the biggest bitch of the bunch and I love it. She just gives no fucks. Only spite. :monster:

Tifa doesn't backdown or feel threatened. She's happy to throwdown with a time manipulating sorceress. She squares up talking about its their lucky day they can fight each other. Girl feels no fear LMAO

So Tifa looks like she's kicking Sorceress ass, but it turns was a manikin all along!

And just as Ultimecia appears to land a sneak attack, Kain swoops in and nearly spears the Sorceress. But Ultimecia doesn't let an interupted kill shot get her down. She goes right back to slingin' shade, pointing out how Kain's left a fucking dead boy right there across the damn room :monster:

It's Zidane. He's also been speared for the future.

Tifa doesn't want to believe Kain killed one of his own comrades, however Ultimecia rubs it in, saying her knight in shining armor is a traitor and calling her a "poor child." LMAO

"If I were you, I'd be more worried about him, than me... Look at that fallen warrior behind you. Surely even you won't dismiss evidence like that. Do you want to know what befell him. Ask your knight in shining armor." Ultimecia, at 100% bitch mode

She giggles and disappears, and Kain says nothing. Tifa goes to Zidane and Kain stops her, then jumps, carries the body, and leaves.

Tifa is naturally confused, but rather than doubt her friend, she decides to give chase and talk to him. Because Tifa's that kinda gal. Always believing in her friends. A cute lil detail is that you actually see Kain running from you on the world map, and then he goes into a gateway a moogle says he's been in multiple times. Suspicious.

Tifa finally confronts Kain, who holds up a spear to her, warding her off. But then he falls to one knee, clearly exhausted and injured. He tells her that manikins will be upon them soon and that she should return to Cosmos where its safe. However, Tifa asks what he's going to do and Kain looks down. "Sparing thoughts for a traitor?" Is his response.

And you know Tifa can't abide that self deprecating bullshit. She may not remember Cloud, but her heart remembers that shit, and she's not having it. :awesome:

"STOP THAT!" She says, pouring a potion on Kain. It heals him and gets him back on his feet. She says she trusts him because he's been helping them all up until now, and she does not believe he'd just suddenly switch sides for no reason. "We're friends, aren't we?"

Tifa asks what's going on. She wants to hear his side of the story, however Kain is tight-lipped. "Forgive me, but that's not for you to know." Tifa, being the stubborn lady she is, goes, "Well, I guess I'll just have to tag along." And cue Tifa just going on with Kain, gently prodding and guilting the man into keeping her close and spilling the beans about his scheme. :monster:

I gotta give her credit. She knows how to pry open tight-lipped, introverted dudes like a pro. Again, she may not remember Cloud, but her heart remembers how to deal with his kind.

An interesting exchange occurs where Tifa questions why he won't answer and if it's because he doesn't see his comrades as friends. She asks him if he only thinks of his friends from his homeworld as "friends." Tifa doesn't accept this line of thinking, because for her, she doesn't remember anyone from her own world, so she only has the friends she's made here. And she finds them valuable to her because without them, she'd be all alone.

Kain eventually responds. "It's not as though.. I do not consider you all my allies. I bear grim news. I did not wish to worry you with such news, as comrades. However, as a warrior summoned to this realm, you should know the truth and what awaits."

And Kain lets her know the truth about the cycle and his intentions. And Tifa takes the bad news in stride. No matter how much they fight, they can't truly win, and she simply laments that finding the crystals sure is a pain. However, the news doesn't change her resolve, and she still intends to help Kain.

Tifa buys into Kain's serial killer rationale. :monster:

Tifa's storyline is cute but very thin. As an FFVII fan, I can't help but feel disappointed in the missed potential here. But alas, this is what they cooked in 2011 for...whatever reason. :monster:

Now all that's left is the conclusion of the 12th Cycle. And then the start of the 13th and final cycle.


Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
Smooth Criminal
Well, since no one else has posted in the thread, here comes a triple post :monster:

I know I said I was going to go through the epilogue of the 12th cycle storyline but when I found out I still was missing 3 summons in my collection catalogue, I started grinding for KP to buy them. Which are found in the Confessions of the Creator storyline, the very last story mode of the game.

For some reason you cannot replay this from the beginning so unfortunately I can never replay going through that the first time again. Which really fucking sucks. But alas.

I can fight Feral Chaos again.

And holy shit did I forget just how much of a piece of shit that thing was. That boss, that monster, is no joke.

So, after rebuilding my EX Build, I decided to take a swing at him again. :awesomonster:

And yeah. I think I still got it.

And after beating him, I totally forgot you could not just save your replays...But edit them too within this game.

EDIT: So originally, this video looked like it was recorded on a potato. And youtube made it worst. So I reuploaded it after upscaling it with an AI to make it 1080p so now it should look better!

Anyways, here is my video of Cloud killing Chaos. Because it's not a wish or a hope. It's a need. It's a hunger. A thirst.

Like, it's amazing how fun this game still is. Like, the battle system really is something special. This motherfucker was kicking my ass until I decided to just go brute force and ride EX Mode nonstop to crush his guard and just give him very little room to actually attack me. But that's the best kind of fight, isn't it?

The amount of fights one can have and edit is just... So fucking awesome. I wonder what other replays I still have I could play with now? :monster:
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Double Growth
Dang. I very much enjoyed Dissidia, but I still only really got through the main story stuff. The post game started to get a little too grindy so I never really dove into the systems, and definitely never attempted Feral Chaos. And I can't believe there's a way to stay in your EX Burst for such an extended period, haha. And that it still got a little dicey around 5.5 minutes there.


I've only ever played the first one. And the arcade one. Doesn't the second one include the entire first game or some crazy shit?

012 seems wild. Kain is sus.


I've only ever played the first one. And the arcade one. Doesn't the second one include the entire first game or some crazy shit?

012 seems wild. Kain is sus.
The storyline of the 1st game is playable yeah. Some of the dialogue that you get while the gridmap in the 1st game are lost in the conversation to Duodecim's map system, like Sephiroth's conversations with Garland. Other then that everythings in.


Double Growth
Yes it does. There is literally no reason for the original release to exist, lol. Anyone that is interested should just play 012. The world map is way better than the checker boards, too.


Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
Smooth Criminal
I really enjoyed reading through your journey, Mako. I agree the first two Dissidia sure were something.

They really were, and it's extremely bizarre that Square Enix doesn't quite realize that.

They are aware in the general, IP sense, that yes... Dissidia has value and is something worth perpetuating and investing in because of it's ability to utilize FF in a lucratively creative way. But the PSP game itself and the systems it introduced are some of the most fun, play focused creative ideas to have been born on the PSP. And if they could replicate even just half of this for a remaster on consoles or something, this is the type of shit fans (new and old) would devour.

Honestly, it's fucking insane they abandoned all this to just try make a team battler. Like, I get wanting to penetrate the arcade market (which is admittedly big in Japan) but that was never going to succeed outside of Japan. So I'm just LOLing.

Dang. I very much enjoyed Dissidia, but I still only really got through the main story stuff. The post game started to get a little too grindy so I never really dove into the systems, and definitely never attempted Feral Chaos. And I can't believe there's a way to stay in your EX Burst for such an extended period, haha. And that it still got a little dicey around 5.5 minutes there.

Dissidia is grindy but its grind you can 1000% cheese and they let you. :monster:

Like, this fusion of RPG and fighting game mechanics is something that is extremely fun and allows for some really unique and fun builds like this. Yet it's balanced because when you go all in on either an EX build or an Assist build, you sacrifice the other. And honestly assists are generally better than just EX builds, however Cloud's EX is particularly potent because he has "guard crush" and can essentially go all in on really big enemies that cannot zone or evade him perpetually. The way you can build a character in Dissidia is just fun as hell.

I've only ever played the first one. And the arcade one. Doesn't the second one include the entire first game or some crazy shit?

012 seems wild. Kain is sus.

Yeah, Dissidia 012 is like, superior to the original in terms of content and scope in every way. The first game's story is included along with 012's new story and a brand new post-game story. In fact, 012 let you carry over your save file from the first game so that your progress with the original 20 characters wasn't lost and you got bonus stuff for having played the first one. So yeah, it was great stuff :monster:

Anyways, been playing some more and finally got around to ending the 12th Cycle.

And damn, I completely forgot I was basically about to play the Final Fantasy version of the Battle of Thermopylae. :awesomonster:

So we basically follow up with Lightning and her band of new heroes making their way to the Land of Discord (which is basically the area of Onrac was in the original FF) to make their way to the Rift opening and close that shit up.

And who else do they run into along the way but Tifa and Kain, who have now resolved to help their efforts in sealing the Rift and ensuring that next cycle, manikins don't run rampant and exterminate all the other Cosmos heroes?

What I found particularly interesting is once again how Laguna plays peacemaker. This dude is seriously one of the most responsible folks lol, I can't stress how hilariously adult he is among everyone. He gets everyone on the same page, but notices Lightning somewhat pouting (understandable since she's still not too keen on the ambushing and impaling allies in the back part of Kain's actions) and checks in on if she's good with working with Kain too. She had been quiet while everyone was talking and reconciling and Laguna went out of his way to include her and make sure she wasn't forgotten. Lightning gives a terse, "Do as you wish" and with that the band's back together.

Lightning and Kain eventually have a heart to heart, and while she says she can't forgive someone who turns a weapon on their own friends, she says she understands why Kain did what he did and acknowledges that if it weren't for him, no one would've made it out of this. So she gives her thanks but says she wants to see him fight harder than he's ever fought before. Kain naturally says she'll see that and then some, and they make peace.

Vaan has these incredible moments of insight where he goes from silly boi to insightful commentator, realizing that the reason they were unable to manifest their crystals was unfortunately due to the fact that the manikins distracted them and kept their minds from unifying with the hopes and intentions of Cosmos. And that by removing the threat and distraction of the manikins, they'll be able to help the heroes get their crystals next cycle since they can focus on battling Chaos and the villains directly, not just fighting to survive. And people say Vaan is just a superfluous add-on character.... Look at him be so smart!

"I don't care if they're manikins or snakeskins! Let me at 'em!" Never change, Laguna. Never change.

Along the way, Tifa asks about what everyon thinks will happen to Chaos' warriors if Cosmos is victorious, sort of concerned and curious. I can't help but think that this question is connected to Cloud. She may not remember him but she definitely.... is connected and feels attachment towards him.

The heroes pass through Orphan's Cradle (I love how there's no rhyme or reason as to how locations from other worlds are handled in Dissidia... one minute you're in World B, the parallel world of FF1, the next moment you're in a facsimile of another FF world lol), realizing they're closing in on the gateway to the Rift. And Vaan is hilariously upbeat and relaxed for a man marching into a potential suicide mission. Let no one question this man's courage; he's either an upbeat badass or half-witted twink. But I'm inclined to believe he's his own happy lil badass. :monster:

Yuna is of course nervous but also steeled in her resolve. Of course a Summoner from Spira would have experience marching to their end, right? "I'll just pretend I'm looking forward to this too, then." She says. Which is pretty dark considering the context.

Laguna admits there's very little to look forward to, and Kain is surprised to hear such frankness from "Sir High-Spirits." And Laguna says his goal has always been to keep everyone's spirits high; it's calculated. LOL Laguna knows that in order for their to be a glimmer of success, everyone needs to have hope so he does his best.

ExDeath and Golbez suddenly appear and of course the giant tree does his trademark guffaw. We then discover from Golbez that... There's far more intended with the manikins than just killing the heroes. The manikin horde has now shifted tactics and are marching towards Orders Sanctuary, since now the heroes are marching to the Rift portal, and the other heroes have been put to sleep. Which leaves just the lone Warrior of Light as the only guardian to protect Cosmos. If Cosmos is checkmated by manikins, its game over. All warriors die immediately and the war ends.

And then Kain does the most real thing ever. He says he will hold off both Golbez and ExDeath, and give the heroes the time necessary to make it to the Rift unobstructed. Vaan wants to turn back and back up Warrior of Light, but Kain accurately deduces that they'd never make it in time and it would make their journey for naught. Their only hope is to close the Rift portal, thin the hoard and hopefully support Warrior of Light from the rear. "Every moment we waste is a blow against him."

Lightning tells Kain, "See you on the other side" and they go on ahead to complete their mission.

Now, as we know, Golbez is a double agent. He let that info out for the heroes to prompt them to make this choice, and it's for the first time ExDeath gets suspicious of him, lol. ExDeath calls out Golbez letting that info slip but he passes it off as there being nothing they can do this late in the game, so there's no harm. But you know how paranoid ExDeath is... Anyways Kain now has a giant tree to fight.

"When the fighting's over, I... I wonder if he'll remember me..." Yuna says on the map. At this point we start seeing the heroes slowly come to the realization there's very little chance they'll be making it to the next cycle.

And then one of the most sad moments happens. With Tifa asking, "Would we have gotten back all our memories if we kept fighting in this world?"

"Yeah, if we're to believe Kain. Not that having our memories would make a difference." Lightning responds in typical Light fashion. :monster:

Lightning asks if Tifa's getting nervous and Tifa goes, " No, not really. I don't remember enough or anything to make me nervous. I actually feel secure, being together with my friends. But, maybe I'm a tiny bit scared. Because you guys are my only friends- It's just, to think there might be more precious friends locked away... Guys, can I call you my friends? Not just you guys, but everyone who's sleeping too..."

What's so fucked up is how oblivious Tifa is without her memories in Dissidia and just completely unaware of everyone and everything. In fact, if I recall correctly (since its been awhile since I played the Reports), Cloud basically threw the whole damn fight, refusing to be a Warrior of Chaos the minute he saw Tifa added to the roster and even tried to 1v1 Chaos to save her and avoid fighting someone he cared for.

And he died for it :monster:

Which is how Cloud becomes a Cosmos warrior in cycle 13. So Tifa has no idea how valued she is by someone from her own damn world, and that someone died for her. And now she's in essence dying to protect that same person. LOL oh the joys of amnesia focused melodrama....

So yeah, they really lay it on thick. And I just can't help but be saddened and annoyed that this is the extent that they use Tifa. I'm sorry, but I wanted more meaningful... action and interaction for Tifa with other characters from her own damn world. Not just... this sad thing. And I know Cloud and Tifa do have a moment but it's tragic and one-sided. I just feel very unsatisfied with this!

Anyways, Lightning challenges Laguna and Vaan's optimistic view of things, stating the fact that there is very little chance and if they're ready for the fight. She asks Vaan if he's really ready for what's coming, because if he's not even aware of the gravity of the situation, he'll just be a burden on the battlefield if he's not serious.

And once again Vaan has these incredible moments of insight. "Are you going into this to lose? Is that how you beat an enemy?"

Lightning is naturally shocked at this megadose of reality coming from the tan-skinned twink, and is like, "You cocky little-" and Laguna disarms the situation where he explains how everyone is united and marching forward to fight the manikins. And the best way to succeed is to stay united. No one has the luxury of backing out, and if there were an easy way to just get back to their homeworlds, they would do it but they can't. So all they can do is fight and face forward.

I swear, Laguna fans were feasting when they played this game LOL

Lightning is even moved by his speech and everyone's back on track.

Yuna along the way talks about how she wants to bring peace not just to those on Cosmos side, but also the one who's sleeping from her own world. Tifa and Lightning comment that maybe she should stay behind since she has memories of her own homeworld and the person who's special to her is still here. However Yuna refuses, saying she wishes to pave the way for the future for Jecht and Tidus to fight on and save themselves and the world. She believes they'll be alright and she must walk her own path. "This is the end of our time here. The next will be yours." She says to Tidus from far away.

Once again, we're graced with another scene of Vaan just getting on Light's nerves. He's talking about how they'll win and the Rift door is right up ahead. And Light questions of he truly has a grasp of what's about to go down, and if he's just going to be that naive and throw his life away, she'll put him to sleep right now and leave him for the next cycle.

And once again, Vaan comes up with the sickest response.

"...Heh, if you care about me that much, why don't you just say so?" VAAN IS TOO STRONG.

Lightning is just like, "What?! I-I don't-"

Vaan tells her to relax and that he's saying they will win after lots of thinking and he's not just talking out his ass. He says he's going all the way and he's fighting to win, and that's all there is to it. Lightning calls him a mouthy brat and says he can talk-the-talk, so we'll soon see if he can walk-the-walk. LOL I just love how Vaan has the perfect personality to annoy Lightning and fluster her. This is just fucking priceless.

But then Vaan, also thinks to himself that if he loses.. He won't be able to go back and get the girl he promised to come back for. That girl being Terra. LOL I was wondering if he was going to ever mention or remember her when he told her to just stay put in the Interdimensional Rift castle. :monster:

...ROTFL and Vaan thinks that even if he can't make it, as long as she says how she feels, another Cosmos warrior is sure to save her... "Well, only the guy in the horned helmet might slay her if he finds her first." LOL the Warrior of Light disrespect is real.

So the heroes make it to the final gateway, and as a neat effect to punctuate the finality of this confrontation is that the parts of the map behind you start to vanish the further you go in. This naturally causes Laguna to get a leg cramp, and Vaan offers his hand to help. Lightning sees the path behind them disappearing and says its for the best. Because they intend to go forward regardless.

The warriors make it to their destination. And there waiting for the heroes at the door to the Rift... Are Garland, The Emperor, Cloud of Darkness, Kefka and Ultimecia.

...I fucking love how Sephiroth gives absolutely zero fucks about anyone and anything except Cloud, Tifa and his own self. This man was like, "I do not give as hit about any of this drama. I'm here for my memories and to piss off Cloud because all this shit ain't real to me. Bye!" :awesomonster:

Garland taunts the heroes saying they've reached the end of the line and Lightning just tells his dumbass to step aside LOL

Kefka once again comes into the scene with some of the best lines. "'Step aside,' she says. Do we look like side-steppers?"


Vaan's like, "Are you crazy? All we gotta do is go through you!" Totally fearless. This man has unlocked all licenses and gives no fucks.

Ultimecia laughs mockingly, asking if the heroes truly believe that they can beat all of them and the manikins emerging from the Rift. Tifa says they'll do just fine and to stay out of their business. I love how Ultimecia is somehow Tifa's rival for some bizarre reason. I guess Sorceresses hate bar and restaurant owners who moonlight as eco-terrorists or something!

Yuna's like, "This time you're not getting away" to the Emperor.

....And then Cloud of Darkness comes along and is like, "You came." towards Laguna, and I swear it sounds like she's flirting and excited to see someone she wanted a second date with. I swear, I didn't go into this story to ship Cloud of Darkness with Laguna, but apparently the writers had other ideas for me. :monster:

Laguna with the most badass comeback, "Yeah. Can't stay, though... Got plans up ahead." LOL such a smooth operator, Mr. President.

So then the battles begin.

Lightning's battle dialogue with Garland here is one of those really badass lines.

Garland: I will grant you true and utter annihilation.

Lightning: Bring it on. I don't need a second chance.

And with that, the villains get their asses handed to them. Garland's down on one knee confused asf. "Y-You're still trying to win??" And Lightning is like, "You want me to finish you off, just say the word." Garland stands up and laughs it off. And basically the villains are like, "well whatever, none of this matters cuz the manikins are gonna slay your dumb stupid goddess so we'll just fuck off and win now, byez!"

Garland was really a salty fuck in the 12th Cycle. LOL. "The manikins will keep you company until the sky falls upon your heads!" What kind of line is that??

But it's now that the grim reality of the situation becomes apparent. More and more fucking manikins keep appearing. And Lightning points out how the situation is dire and there's no hope of just making it home with a horde this size. Their mission will be the last thing for them to do.

There is no going back once they charge in. And all the characters have come to accept that. Even Vaan with a sigh accepts that this is most definitely a suicide mission. Lightning apolgizes, saying that it was her intention to fight to the end and it was her fault that they all got dragged into this. But Tifa reassures her...

And then Laguna does the most hilarious final act of teasing Lightning. Going, "Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait, wait? Did I just sneak another glimpse of Lightning's softer side?" This guy over here... LOLOL.

Lightning's scowls but Laguna reassures her, saying that everyone knew how this would end from the start. And no one was stupid enough to expect otherwise.

....And then Vaan goes, "Actually, this is all news to me." ROTFLMAO what the fuck, Vaan. I was vouching for you, man. Why are you doing this?

Laguna goes, "Okay..maybe one of us..."

And Vaan goes, "Hey, I thought it might come to this. But even then, I still stuck with you."

Yuna says everything they do will have meaning and alongside Tifa, they reassure Light again that this was all their decision. And with that, they all charge into the horde.

...But right before Lightning goes in, Kain limps on to join the fray. Having held his own against ExDeath and Golbez. Lightning runs to him, amazed he made it and worried for him. Kain shrugs it off and says he's fine, and goes into the fray side-by-side with Lightning.

We then cut to Warrior of Light, who gives an impassioned speech to Cosmos. About how he knows he will more than likely die and that victory is unlikely. But he intends to fight til his very last breath and that there will be hope for victory in the future. And he faces down a mob of manikins that there ain't no way a single warrior is gonna walk away from.

And what follows is... Honestly fucking amazing. And I completely forgot this cutscene existed. Like, I have no idea what happened or how I forgot this next sequence of events. But it went hard, and I just have to post it.

This is it. They fought to the very end. An incredible last stand, and not what I would've expected from an ending in a game like this!

And just before Warrior of Light goes is slain by the horde, Cosmos actually decided to do something and use her power to actually save him.

And with that, the 12th Cycle ends. Cosmos protected Warrior of Light. But at a price. Her using her powers for anything other than supporting the order of the world weakened her greatly and left her on the brink.

And that is how we lead into the main story of Dissidia's 13th Cycle.

I have to say overall, they did well with a story. There were somethings I loved, and things I felt were lacking, like Tifa's story. But overall, this was an enjoyable tale. Now I will do the main storylines from Dissidia, which will have an interesting new context given what was shown before :monster:


I played a decent amount of the first Dissidia, but never tried the second one. It's one of those things that I think could be quite fun on a better platform and with a controller.

NT was unfortunately not the answer to the Dissidia potential.


Listen closely, there is meaning in my words.
Smooth Criminal
It's been a minute since my last update but...

I've completed the labyrinth 100% in the meantime and got the Death Blade, the ultimate prize weapon of the game that completes the "Final Strike" set. It is the only set in the game that boosts both Assist and EX build up and duration. So it's incredibly powerful but.. The drawback is that the defense is so low (equivalent to level 1 gear!) you essentially become a glass cannon. :monster:

But it's fun as hell to play with!

Feral Chaos is the ultimate boss of the Labyrinth and I nearly got a game over because my whole team got wiped... Except for Terra. Terra took that shit home and beat up that Lawless Level 130 Chaos :awesome:

In terms of the story, let's dive right into the rest of it.

So the first storyline is ironically, Cloud's. I remember this one pretty well but it's been awhile so I don't mind the refresher. In fact, I decided to do the Chaos Report side story first since it...Serves as a context for the following 13th Cycle.

So as we know, Cloud was originally a Warrior of Chaos.

And while a Warrior of Chaos, Cloud didn't have a good time. After all, his ally was...Sephiroth himself. And his opponent ended up becoming Tifa.

So Cloud basically refused to participate on general principle.

This of course, caught the attention of Kefka, who apparently is a little shit who just can't stand seeing Warriors of Chaos (who arguably are allowed to do what they want since... you know, they're chaotic lol) not participating and giving it their all in the war. So... Being the little bastard he is, decides to stir some shit.

He goes to Sephiroth, and goes, "Could I have a word with you... There seem to be some pups who have forfeited the fight. I plan on getting them back on track, you see."

Kefka, a fucking Karen try-hard who just can't mind his own damn business. :monster:

Like, he's the tattletale of the group! Sicko!

He flatters Sephiroth who of course doesn't give a shit, but Sephiroth's ears perk up when Kefka utters the words "Cloud" and "how to fight him." :awesomonster:

Sephiroth at this point does not have his memories from his time in FFVII. He just knows that Cloud is someone he wants to fight, and Sephiroth, knowing the importance of memories, wishes to get those memories back above anything else. And Kefka tells him, that the memories of one's past world become revealed if one fights another from their original world. Naturally, it's forbidden for warriors of the same allegiance to cross blades, but... If Cloud could be a made a traitor... Sephiroth could punish Cloud and cross blades with him consequence free~

So Kefka tells Sephiroth that Tifa, the fresh new face to the 12th Cycle, is from Sephiroth's own world. And Kefka knows this, because Cloud said so in confidence to Kuja, who also has his memories and refused to fight Zidane. The eavesdropping asshole has set up the perfect situation to start shit and get them all going at each other, lol

Sephiroth, eager to get his memories back and start shit with his favorite enemy, goes off to find Tifa.

And Kefka goes off to Cloud to let him know the fun that's about to begin. In the most asshole way possible. "I just saw Sephiroth wander off, and I thought you'd be with him." And Cloud goes, "Why do I have to wander around with him?" LMAO. And then Kefka drops the bomb that Sephiroth's about to go "beat her (Tifa) into oblivion." He tells Cloud if he hurries he can get some of the scrap if he leaves now. And Cloud wastes no time.

Tifa is confronted by Sephiroth, and she goes, "Do I know you?" LOL totally surreal seeing Tifa act just chill and confused in seeing Sephiroth.

Sephiroth doesn't know shit either, but he plays it off by saying, "I am your enemy. That is all you need to know." For being amnesiac, Sephiroth knows how to "fake it til you make it."

...I swear, Tifa has one of the most hilarious intro battle quotes with Sephiroth.

"You don't even tell a girl your name, before you stab her??"

ROTFL, that's just perfect.

Sephiroth responds, "You don't even remember me. How very tragic."

Sephiroth beats her and of course gets some of his memories back. But he wants more, so he intends to finish her off. "What would happen if I cut you down? Would your fall serve to unlock even deeper memories?" And right when he's about to, Cloud arrives, hero style. And with that, Cloud and Sephiroth cross swords again. And Cloud turns traitor.

"Saving enemies from your friends?"-Sephiroth

"Oh you're no friend of mine."-Cloud

Cloud chases Sephiroth off, who says "That's enough for now. There will be time later to take your life in trade for this betrayal." And with that, we are left with the most... awkward and sad reunion between two close friends and given the end of FFVII and AC, a couple.

Tifa thanks Cloud for the save and Cloud just shrugs it off, staying as tight-lipped as he can. And you can tell right off, Tifa is..flirting hard asf with Cloud, lolol

"So, hey, my name's Tifa!" And Cloud's just facing away from her. Clearly trying not to give into the urge to talk more freely with her. She assumes he's a Warrior of Cosmos.

"Actually, no. I'm on the other side."

And Tifa is shocked at this. Because he apparently fought one of his allies. And she doesn't understand why.

Cloud goes, "I felt like it." ROTFL, the most hilariously bullshit answer. But naive, amnesiac Tifa buys it. She laughs, "Lemme get this straight. You rescue your enemies when the mood strikes you? Guess it would make sense for warriors of Chaos to be a little unpredictable. Still surprises me, though."

Tifa then asks for Cloud's name. And Cloud gives it, wondering if a spark of recognition would ignite her memories.

ANd Tifa goes, "Cloud... Oh, sorry. So Cloud, Are you- I mean, do we know each other? I can't remember much of anything from before all this. But when I heard your name, I thought we might-"

And Cloud goes, "No. I never met you before." Tifa is dejected, but she compliments Cloud, thanking him for the save and saying how cool he was swooping in and saving her from Sephiroth. "You were like a hero, charging in to save the girl." Cloud is silent as he listens to her. After awhile, Tifa says that she isn't sure she can bring herself to think of Cloud as an enemy, and when she says that Cloud goes, "Well you sure better try. Because once you start second-guessing, you're done for."

"We're enemies no matter how we look at it. We have to fight. For now, you better head back and join your friends. Before I have another change of heart. I'm not in a fighting mood today."

And Cloud threatens he may change his mind. Clearly trying to push her away.

Tifa then asks if she'll see him again, and Cloud goes, "You will. But the next time we meet, we'll be as enemies. And I won't go easy on you."

Tifa sadly thanks Cloud for the warning and walks off. And Cloud thinks to himself, "Once your memories return, you'll lose the will to fight just like I have. So... Before that can happen, I have to act..." And Cloud marches off..

To kill Chaos. :awesome:

Unfortunately... Cloud isn't Jack Garland. So his attempt to kill Chaos goes about as well as you can expect.

Chaos ain't fucking around and laughs at Cloud's feeble attempts to end his life. "Feeble warrior, led astray by the faint memories of your past, know how fleeting your power is, and mourn in the depths of sorrow!"

Cloud is laid out. Just laid the fuck out. And Chaos just tears into him. "Well? Lowly pawn, has your vaunted blade altered fate's course?" Just really talking smack to a dying man in Hell. "Your own obliteration- that is the greatest change you can ever hope to accomplish in this world."

Cloud's fading away into darkness but as he does, Cloud prays to Cosmos. He prays that she save Tifa. And Cosmos, clearly heard his prayer because thanks to that desire, she decides to make Cloud a Warrior of Cosmos so that he can be by her side. Little did Cosmos know however, that Tifa would sacrifice herself to save Cloud and the others in the 12th Cycle. So in the end, Cloud's hope for her salvation and protection ended up not quite coming true. Because she sacrificed herself to save him for the next cycle.

And its with this shade of loss and missing someone that Cloud enters the 13th cycle.

Cloud is seen as a reliable big brother type to Tidus, Cecil and Firion, given his practical common sense and experience. He's not one to recklessly run around and fight for no reason, and is more apt to think things through. However, Cloud feels an emptiness. "If he finds the light of his crystal, will be able to cast a light on the shadows hiding within?"

"You're looking gloomy Cloud, you should practice smiling more!"-Tidus
"Why do we have to talk about that?? -Let's get a move on." -Cloud

Tidus just straight up telling Cloud to smile more as if he's a woman on the street or in the workplace....Is Tidus flirting here now?! :awesome:

Afterwards Cloud brings up the point that the warriors of Cosmos don't truly know what will happen when they obtain their crystals. Will everything work out happy-ending style if the crystals are obtained? Will it truly end all the battles and save the world? Cloud needs some convincing before he just signs himself up to fight for deities in a world he's not even from.

Cloud then asks Tidus, Firion, and Cecil if they all have their own individual reason to fight. Cecil gives his, Tidus gives his, however Firion asks for more time to come up for a reason that will hopefully satisfy Cloud's curiosity. And Cloud's cool with it. Cloud's feeling a sense of emptiness because he doesn't feel he has his own personal reason to fight.

Or at least, he can't remember what that reason was before.... Since she's now gone and it's been plucked from his memories.

Anyways Cloud tries to play babysitter, trying to keep Tidus and Firion from running on ahead due to not knowing if enemies are lying in lurk but Cecil tells him to save his breath.. They're already gone lolol

Cecil points out the reason Cloud's looking for regarding his fighting is potentially hidden in his memories.

Tidus says that we don't exactly know running around won't find their crystals... So why not just run around and find out? And Cloud goes, "That's our Tidus for ya." lol

Cloud notices that there are faces among the manikins that they recognize, and wonders if they're probing their memories. FIrion asks if he sees someone he recognizes and he nods. He sees someone who definitely shouldn't be here. And of course it the Imaginary Champion Manikin (Sephiroth) that's right next to him. :monster:

After passing through the gateway, Firion finally gives his answer to Cloud. He's fighting for his dream. The Wild Rose. He's longing to see a future with Wild Roses that can bloom in peace. That dream of peace is what gives him the strength to keep fighting. And Cloud asks to fight Firion, to see the strength of his dream himself. Firion is surprised but goes to take him on. Cloud gets the upperhand and Firion's on one knee but he suddenly does one last lunge and moves all his weapons to Cloud's next when he least expects it. And then they fall to the ground. Cloud offers his hand and lifts Firion up, telling him, that was not bad at all.

Cloud respects Firion's dream but sadly he admits he can't be like him. Firion asks why, and Cloud says he's looked but unfortunately he's still emptyheaded. Without a dream, what should he do? And Cloud thinks to himself, "Maybe what I'm looking for, isn't here anymore..."

So again, it appears that Cloud's fragmented memories are somehow unconsciously aware that someone important is no longer around and its giving him quite a bit of angst!

We suddenly cut to Sephiroth and Garland. Sephiroth asks if he has any memories from before he was awoken. And Garland gives the totally NON-SUSPICIOUS answer of "...Why do you ask?"

"We often hear that memories can be suppressed. Watching him (Cloud), I find myself thinking... Perhaps we are born knowing everything, but are only allowed to live after having had that knowledge sealed away." -Sephiroth

Garland just says nothing and stares.

"One more question... When I awoke, I saw a dragon with an unearthly glow. What was that?"

And I swear, this Garland is the worst fucker to hide information with. He can't help but come off as shady. He answers Sephiroth with, "What makes you think I would know the answer?"

Back to Cloud and the others, they entire another gateway. Cloud remarks how everyone is confident in finding their crystals. And Cecil agrees, but wonders if Cloud shoulders a greater concern that's weighing on his mind. And Cloud says, "Concern... Maybe a sense of loss. It's nothing, don't worry about me."

After awhile, Cecil and Cloud talk and Cecil recommends some soul searching. Cloud may not find the answer he wants from others here, but perhaps if he goes and explores on his own, he can find the answer to the question lying at the bottom of his heart. In fact all of the allies come up and say that its okay for Cloud to find his reason and that they'd' be rooting for him. With that Cloud agrees and decides he's gonna wander around for himself and see what the fuck he can find to quell this loss and anxiety on his own :monster:

They make him promise to come back and tell them what that answer is when he finds it and with that, Cloud goes solo. He decides to head south because he feels.. Something calling him. (I wonder what that could be :awesome:)

Cloud accurately deduces the call he's feeling is probably him.

And sure enough, Cloud hears a familiar "Good to see you, Cloud." And it Sephiroth.

Sephiroth draws his sword but Cloud just stares him down like he's a socially awkward idiot. LMAO

Sephiroth asks why he refuses to draw, and Cloud says fighting him is meaningless and he's done taking part in pointless battles. Sephiroth smirks and asks if Cloud had a reason, does that mean he'd fight anyone, and Cloud corrects him saying he just wants a reason to believe in, to fight.

"Nothing but a puppet. Here, let me give you a reason. A dream is easy to nip in the bud."

And Sephiroth busts out with Firion's prized red rose. :monster:

Sephiroth chuckles evilly. And Cloud worriedly asks what he did to them.

"So now you have your reason. Come after me." Sephiroth disappears with those words.

And we're back to the chase again. :awesome:

Cloud is pissed, realizing that Sephiroth did all this to draw him out, and he hopes that the others are okay as he goes on to pursue Seph on his own.

Of course Cloud confronts Sephiroth in the Planet's core. And we get one of the best Sefi-Kura lines in the game here. Sephiroth saying, "You're here. You always do as you're told, don't you?"

And of course Sephiroth begins to bully Cloud, pointing out how Cloud is searching for other people's reasons because he has none of his own. That in the end he's nothing but a puppet who gets swept away, unable to make any decisions on his own.

Such an uplifting interpretation of Cloud's feelings, right?

But Sephiroth's not done! He offers Cloud a great service. "I'll continue to provide you with a reason- every time you need one." >=D

Cloud gets fed up and begins yelling. "I came here of my own will!"

Sephiroth draw their blades. And then the battle begins.

And after a hard fought battle, Cloud gets his crystal! The first of the Cosmos warriors to achieve this feat.

However, Sephiroth, being the salty loser he is says that if he takes the crystal, Cloud will be doomed to more meaningless conflicts and will never know why given his lost memories. Cloud doesn't care. He takes hold of it, and says that if it's his destiny, so be it. He lives in his reality, not Sephiroth's.

Then Sephiroth just pours out pure sodium, saying, "Everytime your eyes gaze upon it, remember; you were only able to obtain it with my guidance. And I will continue to pull your strings."

Cloud tells Sephiroth to hold that L tightly to his bare chest, so it keeps him warm at night as he thinks of his Mother and then decides to find some other warriors of Cosmos so he can help them get their crystals too. He decides to keep fighting and he'll find his answer along the way.

Overall, Cloud's Destiny Odyssey is short but pretty interesting, especially with the additional story and context from the Chaos Reports and what we see with Tifa in the 12th Cycle.

Cloud's feelings of loss and ambivalence towards the whole affair of the war now don't seem so random and unnecessary like they were in the original, given what we see ourselves of his past actions in the 12th cycle, and the loss of Tifa in the Rift. And of course Cloud basically killing himself trying to fight Chaos on his own lolol.

Despite Cloud not fully remembering Tifa, he still remembers the loss and death he suffered and it smolders inside him. So all throughout this cycle its on his mind subconsciously and he devotes himself to keep fighting and helping other heroes where he can. Which will be more apparent in other Destiny Odysseys. So yeah, this was a fun one to revisit!
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