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Old 07/17/2017   #121
Kionae
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Godot wrote:
Kionae wrote: I never manage to get her HP real high
her grid is essentially nothing but speed and HP
Yeah, but I don't use her enough to get her sphere levels up.
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Old 07/20/2017   #122
Teioh
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Chapter Four

On the Moonflow we can benefit from O'aka's charity if we've been donating to him. So... have you been funding our friend O'aka?
Yep. That grinding I did in Chapter 2 has set me up quite nicely gil wise and I funded Oíaka early on. I donít touch the weapons/armour side of what he sells but have been taking advantage of the discounted items.

Now that Rikku is in the party, do you have any plans for special Customizations you've been looking forward to?
When I get my hands on empty four slot armour Iíll customise the element eater for everyone. Then thereís the end game customisations with Auto-Haste and Auto-Phoenix I like to make. In the meantime Iíll play it by ear and customise if Iím struggling with a particular enemy.

The Farplane is a bit iffy in the lore - the Al Bhed state that the pyreflies just create the vision of the dead, whereas the Yevonites believe it's truly the souls. It'd be easy to dismiss this if it weren't for other events later in the game and in FFX-2. What do you think?
Can it maybe be a bit of both? In the Farplane they do come across as just being visions based on memories. iirc there was something about pyreflies and spheres so there is that reaction to memories and being able to create images. Then thereís the whole unsent - people like Lord Jyscal and FFX-2 spoiler the whole Shuyin coming back/possessing people ordeal which lends evidence to the soul side of things. I like to think of it as being a bit like FFVIIís lifestream where most people have their memories absorbed and are scattered to be reborn etc. (or in the case of pyreflies, sent to the Farplane where they hang out, making images/visions), then you have some people such as the ones Aerith meets in Case of Lifestream White who are stubbornly refusing to be absorbed because of strong attachments/emotions and end up as unsent or fiends.

Do the Thunder Plains annoy the ever-loving shit out of you or do you not mind them so much?
I grinded here for a while, got struck by approx 20 bolts and managed to dodge... 4 (2 consecutively... woo). My low reaction time is the number 1 reason I donít play many platformers

Did you go against my advice and face the butterflies? Do you enjoy that sidequest?
I tried to leave the butterflies well enough alone. Still managed to bump into one though whilst grinding my own business. I donít really care about the treasure rewards at this point and want to spare what little enthusiasm I have for this sidequest for Kimarhi.

Given the last cutscene we see this chapter it's time to open up the Jecht can of worms. Do you think his feelings being expressed later make up for how he treated Tidus as a kid? Do you think there is more for him to repent for?
Eh, as a kid to emotionally abusive parents who has heard the whole Ďlove you, just donít know how to express ití line, Iím probably a little too biased in my opinion. Maybe if theyíd had time to sit down as adults and discuss things and got to have a relationship at that stage of their lives. Maybe. To me thereís no satisfactory resolution but lifeís like that sometimes.

Extras

Kionae wrote: I think I probably under-utilize Rikku when I play this game. Mostly I just use her Steal and Use abilities (Al-Bhed potions FTW!), and otherwise ignore her because her physical attacks are shit, and I never manage to get her HP real high.
I didn't use Rikku much either until my last playthrough where I found out that her celestial weapon is one of three I can easily get my hands on. She's currently my third strongest character on that save file. Second if Auron is at full health (Yuna is in first place lol).
  • I beat the second contest of Aeons with just Ifritís overdrive. I think I may be seriously over-levelled lol
  • Yay! Rikku. Time to stock up on items! I usually talk to Lulu all the time but decided to chat with Rikku and was rewarded with cute dialogue about marriage etc. If only our choices had a real effect on the story. Macalania scene with Tidus and Rikku
  • Speaking of marriage. Wanted to see how far the rumour of Yunaís marriage had spread so as soon as I entered the Thunder Plains I went on a journey. The answer was Ė all the way back to Besaid! Thatís some fast travelling gossip.
  • Finally got Lv. 2 Key Spheres! Just in time to nip over to Yuna then back to Tidus before cutting through to Auron. Kimarhi is lagging behind a bit now in strength but has got Steal, Use and the lower black magic to keep him useful.
  • Itís taken me all this time and several playthroughs to find out you can defend in battle with triangle?! Iíve been struggling to get everyone to have a go in battle, especially those without a special ability like pray/cheer etc. And I could have just let them defend? Ugh.
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Old 07/22/2017   #123
Mr. Ite
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Okay so I've actually been filming my playthrough with OBS and started editing a commentary that me and my fiance Sarah were making. I wanted to upload those videos as we went, but obviously that's a LOT more work than just writing my general thoughts. I may still do it one day but for now that secret side project is on hold for two major reasons:

1. It quickly devolved into snark, because unfortunately I still hate this game, and...

2. As soon as I hit Luca, I was completely swallowed by Blitzball and all of the time I set aside for editing has been spent building my team.

SO! I suppose I will let the video idea go and join the playthrough like a not-insanely-overachieving mess

Chapter 1

What version of the game are you playing: the original or one of the remasters?


I'm playing the remaster on Steam. Fun fact: the default language is Japanese! Didn't learn that until I'd already started a new game. You can change the settings in the launch menu... the launch menu is also in Japanese, but you can guess your way to the english version.

I'm also using the Remastered Soundtrack. So far, I don't notice a difference! (to what I heard 10+ years ago.)

If you are playing a remaster, which version of the Sphere Grid are you using? How are you finding its progression? If you are playing the original, what do you think about the Sphere Grid in general as a leveling system?

I'm playing the original Sphere grid, because I don't remember it well enough to need an advance set. I remember really liking it, and so far I'm enjoying it. It doesn't help that you continue having tutorial fights until well into Chapter 3, and they don't really give you control of the sphere grid until Chapter 2.

I did remember to farm Ability Spheres under the lake in Besaid, when you first meet Wakka. That's the only time you can get them until the Mi'hen Highroad, and I'm a "grind the shit out of every dungeon you come across" kind of guy.

What do you think about the Cloister of Trial puzzles as a recurring puzzle? Are they too tricky? Too Easy? Just plain annoying?


Love these puzzles! Yes yes yesssss

What do you think about the drastic shift from the ATB to the CTB system for battles? What about the ability to switch party members on the fly?

I love both of these aspects, particularly because the initiative order is on the top right side of the screen. All the best fun in the game is trying to manipulate the initiative order and the party in play. One of the things I gave FFX credit for was "a really great battle system" completely forgetting that it is, as many have said, a nice-looking Rock Paper Scissors (although even Rock Paper Scissors has an element of chance.)

It's worth noting that my thoughts on this issue come while playing Chapter 4, and that you only have two or three fights at the end of Chapter 1 to experiment with either of these. As far as railroading goes, FFX is one of the worst offenders in an already linear series. The first several hours of the game strip the player of all control, literally casting them adrift several times only to wake up to more tutorial battles and cloying narration. Er, but I digress.

My questions, comments, and rants from Chapter 1:

1. Why didn't they give this game a proper dub? Of all the ways in which this game has poorly aged, the inexusable localization is the worst. It's on par with VII in terms of laziness, and at least with VII, you could read the inane dialogue at a pace that made it seem like people talking to each other. FFX has the kind of silent lip-flapping that you see bad comedians do when they're making fun of kung fu movies, and every line begins and ends with 1 to 3 seconds of it. I tried closing my eyes to avoid the creepy uncanny valley faces (another of the game's sour notes) but it's like listening to an audio book where your iPod interrupts every few seconds to tell you that the battery is low. It doesn't help that the first half of the game is stupidly slow paced to begin with.

2. If Rikku explained the Sphere Grid to Tidus, and they go on an adventure together, why is he surprised when she can understand him??

3. I love that the Aeons actually appear in the world. Valefor flying in to Besaid really got me, especially on this second playthrough -- it's the same animation as you see a billion times in the battle screen, except s/he is flying into town square to meet with his/her summoner for the first time. I've never really been a fan of FF's battle-is-abstraction technique, I much prefer in-world explanations or (better yet) in-world application of battle mechanics. This does both brilliantly.

4. Why is Yuna apologizing all the time? I don't remember her being this annoying.

5. Everyone is amphibious! That's not a question, I just like that bit of unexplained worldbuilding. Everyone is amphibious, no need to worry about it. Salt water, fresh water, you pour it we breathe it!



Chapter 2 I didn't learn the Jecht shot

What did you think of the Sending sequence? How does it hold up today?

This is a very pretty sequence and it still holds up. Aside from the in-game faces, the hair and costume design, FFX is gorgeous.

Did you face the optional boss Lord Ochu? How did you handle him?

I did not face Lord Ochu, on Godot's advice. I did spend about four hours grinding in Kilika Woods.

How was Blitzball for you this time around? Do you plan on playing it regularly? Were you able to beat the Luca Goers?

This is where my fiance Sarah really got into the game. She actually hates the main plot more than I do (I think it's mostly because the story actually hooked me around the time you get Shiva, and we aren't there yet). We lost against the Goers once, then tried again and won.

Now that you've got some levels on you, what are your plans for Kimahri?
How will you be developing him.


I've sent Kimahri down towards the Thief path, although the stealing achievement on Steam can't be done with Kimahri so I may regret this option.

Questions from Chapter 2:

1. After Kilika is destroyed there is an emotional shot where a blitzball floats along the water, among the wreckage... but... blitzball is an underwater sport. If the ball floats to the top like that, how could they possibly pass or shoot underwater?

2. So the machina used in Blitzball stadiums, and in the cafes where people watch TV - that's all kosher?

3. Okay so Kimahri is approached by two thugs, and Tidus eggs him on telling him to fight them. Kimahri punches one out. Then Tidus watches the blitzball game on TV while Kimahri gets suckerpunched by the other Ronso. This scene never has a resolution.


Chapter 3

Given the major revelation we get about Tidus's relationship with Sin, what are your thoughts? How do you think it works as a story element?

Clumsily executed, terribly directed, faces deep in the uncanny valley. The kill-your-dad plot isn't exactly untilled soil. Hell, in FFIX they put a spin on it TWICE, once by making it a kill-your-mom plot and the other time it's Garland, which is... unusual. In FFX, they do manage to take this plot device in a good direction but we're many hours away from this game doing anything but annoying me.

Dear god we're bringing it up again: What did you think about the laughing scene? You a hater or defender?

I'll defend the "HA HA HA HA" it's actually one of the better moments in the terrible voice acting - of both the character and the game at large. Obviously, this is a conflicted kid who is doing this fake laugh at a cute girl's behest, and there's enough frustration and anger in those "HA HA"s to make it quite touching, but you need the context of the scene to appreciate it.

Question from ChipNoir that I wanted to add: What do you think about the lack of a water-based Aeon in a game surrounded by water? Why no Leviathan, Bismarck etc?

Because when you summoned it in the desert, it would flop around and die?

Were you able to beat the Chocobo Eater or did you have to walk the Old Road of Shame?

I kicked it's buttocks.

Knowing what we know about Yevon, do you think Operation Mi'ihen was worth doing still or was is it a mistake? Not in terms of confirmation bias, do you think the plan itself was foolish or still admirable?

Good question. This game makes me super nihilistic, not just about Spira but about life in general. I suppose my answer is, who cares? Nothing matters. Do what you want, no matter what you will lose everything you love to the void, either that or die too soon and make your loved ones suffer. There are no other options. So do what you want, I guess.

What do you think about the use of Ixion instead of the traditional Ramuh for our lightning themed summon this time around?

I like Ixion! If it were Ramuh, I would be wondering why he and Yuna don't talk - especially since Ramuh was featured nicely in FFIX. Like Joe said, I like mixing familiar with original.

My questions etc. from Chapter 3.

1. Okay so this is where Blitzball really consumed my household. Sarah has a playbook where she keeps our team's stats and techniques - she's like our manager. We began by making plays together but now we're both in sync so saying the right play out loud would be redundant. Better to just skunk the opposing team and high five. At JT's recommendation I got Wedge and Jumal. Wedge is second scorer in the league (Tidus is first) and the Aurochs are just above the Psyches in the League. The last tournament came down to the Aurochs vs. the Goers (again!) with the Aurochs holding the title. I have Tidus as LF, Wedge as RF, Letty as MF, Jassu as LD, Botta as RD, and Jumal on Net. Botta knows more techniques than I think anyone in the league, but his stats are such shit that I have a hard time keeping him from the bench. I haven't let Datto or Keepa go, they're stuck at Lv 2 or 3. My forwards are nearing Lv. 20 and my Ds are Lv. 11 or 12.

2. What was I talking about? Oh yeah, Blitzball. As far as the other teams, the Psyches give us the hardest time, followed by the Glories and the Fangs. Nimrook is an absolute monster, there is nothing except a shot to the face that even stands a chance. One of the Al Bhed signed with the Guado Glories, which is fun, and Bickson (the leader of the Luca Goers in the plot) was traded for a woman in striped pants. I really love watching the other teams re-sign and trade their players.

3. I let Sarah decide what to tell Gatta. I much prefer it if Luzzu lived, except I actually wouldn't. Luzzu is the more interesting character to me, and I think his voice is sexy. But his breakdown if Gatta dies (I youtubed it) is, well, more of the same FFX garbage, whereas Gatta's breakdown is Saving Private Ryan levels of upsetting. "What's going on!? WHAT's GOING ON!?" Ouch.

4. The Temple at Djose really stumped me my first time. It was the first time I've ever looked up the answer to a video game puzzle on the internet, and that was after several hours of failing. This time, I remembered more or less what the components were, and I even got the destruction treasure! Go me. Time to reward myself with some Blitzball.

5. Seriously, our blitzball habit is so bad that we now have a one-game-per-save-sphere rule.

Last edited by Mr. Ite; 07/22/2017 at 09:45 AM.
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Old 07/22/2017   #124
Jason Tandro
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Since only Teioh and Kionae have beaten Chapter 4 at this point I am going to wait to post Chapter 5 until Monday. Happy weekend all!
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Old 07/22/2017   #125
Ami
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Thanks! I can only really play/stream on a Saturday, so I knew at least I was going to be behind. Could we not make this a weekly thing instead, or is that too far between chapters?
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Old 07/22/2017   #126
Jason Tandro
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Amizon wrote: Thanks! I can only really play/stream on a Saturday, so I knew at least I was going to be behind. Could we not make this a weekly thing instead, or is that too far between chapters?
I think we'll play it by ear based on the overall group progress. If it helps I'm running this thing but I'm only on Chapter 3. Not sure why I'm so far behind (ahehakfhkhafehefheh Stormblood ahdjuahhahf). A week-to-week thing might not be such a bad idea but if we have a bunch of people catching up then maybe we'll speed it up.

Either way, don't stress about "being behind". I'd rather people enjoy their playthrough than rush to try and meet an arbitrary deadline.
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Old 07/22/2017   #127
Jason Tandro
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Mr. Ite wrote: 1. Okay so this is where Blitzball really consumed my household. Sarah has a playbook where she keeps our team's stats and techniques - she's like our manager. We began by making plays together but now we're both in sync so saying the right play out loud would be redundant. Better to just skunk the opposing team and high five. At JT's recommendation I got Wedge and Jumal. Wedge is second scorer in the league (Tidus is first) and the Aurochs are just above the Psyches in the League. The last tournament came down to the Aurochs vs. the Goers (again!) with the Aurochs holding the title. I have Tidus as LF, Wedge as RF, Letty as MF, Jassu as LD, Botta as RD, and Jumal on Net. Botta knows more techniques than I think anyone in the league, but his stats are such shit that I have a hard time keeping him from the bench. I haven't let Datto or Keepa go, they're stuck at Lv 2 or 3. My forwards are nearing Lv. 20 and my Ds are Lv. 11 or 12.

2. What was I talking about? Oh yeah, Blitzball. As far as the other teams, the Psyches give us the hardest time, followed by the Glories and the Fangs. Nimrook is an absolute monster, there is nothing except a shot to the face that even stands a chance. One of the Al Bhed signed with the Guado Glories, which is fun, and Bickson (the leader of the Luca Goers in the plot) was traded for a woman in striped pants. I really love watching the other teams re-sign and trade their players.

3. I let Sarah decide what to tell Gatta. I much prefer it if Luzzu lived, except I actually wouldn't. Luzzu is the more interesting character to me, and I think his voice is sexy. But his breakdown if Gatta dies (I youtubed it) is, well, more of the same FFX garbage, whereas Gatta's breakdown is Saving Private Ryan levels of upsetting. "What's going on!? WHAT's GOING ON!?" Ouch.

4. The Temple at Djose really stumped me my first time. It was the first time I've ever looked up the answer to a video game puzzle on the internet, and that was after several hours of failing. This time, I remembered more or less what the components were, and I even got the destruction treasure! Go me. Time to reward myself with some Blitzball.

5. Seriously, our blitzball habit is so bad that we now have a one-game-per-save-sphere rule.[/spoiler]
Another addict. I see you too are a man of culture. Yeah when I said the Psyches are the worst team in the league I forgot that they have two notable strengths - Passing and Nimrook. I'm guessing I repressed him out of existence like I did with Balgerda.

For Nimrook runup to his face with Tidus and Jecht Shot or else put him to sleep with Nap Shot (Wedge can learn it early on). Make sure if you haven;t you have Jumal mark somebody to teach him Grip Gloves and Super Goalie and only the best shots will get by him. If you still have Keepa and don't mind grinding you can have him sub in when you're in the lead because he does after many levels become the best goalie in the game but it's a Magikarp evolution from hell.
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Old 07/24/2017   #128
Mr. Ite
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JT well it sounds like Keepa's a... dare I say it? I daren't.

I've played a few games, nearing the end of the Thunder Plains. Keepa has been coming on at intermission, because it's usually 3-0 Aurochs at that point. Wedge is Lv 23 and the top scorer in the league, and he doesn't even have sphere shot! (Although he has venom shot and just got spin ball *metal guitar solo*)

Datto's contract came up again and I finally let him go. Botta's on thin ice too. Are there any good defender characters anyone would recommend?

Plot wise, everything that is introduced at Guadosalam is so awesome. I'll talk about it more when I finish the chapter.
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Old 07/24/2017   #129
Flintlock
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Jason Tandro wrote: If you still have Keepa and don't mind grinding you can have him sub in when you're in the lead because he does after many levels become the best goalie in the game
I've seen you say this a couple of times now, and every time I think to myself, "that's not right". So this time I looked it up, and yeah, it's not right.

There's really only one stat that matters to Blitzball goalies: CA. Keepa's caps out at 39. Jumal, Noy Guado, Kyou, Raudy, Yuma Guado, Zamzi Ronso, Nizarut, Wedge and Nimrook all have higher values at level 99. Nimrook's is the highest at 67. Source – and no, I didn't make it myself.

You might have been thinking of Keepa's SH stat, which rockets all the way up to 99, the maximum value. I think someone else mentioned it in this thread already.
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Old 07/24/2017   #130
Jason Tandro
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Flintlock wrote:
Jason Tandro wrote: If you still have Keepa and don't mind grinding you can have him sub in when you're in the lead because he does after many levels become the best goalie in the game
I've seen you say this a couple of times now, and every time I think to myself, "that's not right". So this time I looked it up, and yeah, it's not right.

There's really only one stat that matters to Blitzball goalies: CA. Keepa's caps out at 39. Jumal, Noy Guado, Kyou, Raudy, Yuma Guado, Zamzi Ronso, Nizarut, Wedge and Nimrook all have higher values at level 99. Nimrook's is the highest at 67. Source Ė and no, I didn't make it myself.

You might have been thinking of Keepa's SH stat, which rockets all the way up to 99, the maximum value. I think someone else mentioned it in this thread already.
It has been a while so that's probably what I was thinking of. I know it's handy to have him for the Aurochs Spirit move (or wtfever it's called) so that probably is what caused my confusion.

I guess that means I can scrap Keepa and hope that the Psyches don't renew Nimrook's contract at some point.

Though I like Jumal. He does fine work.
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Old 07/24/2017   #131
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Chapter 5: The Pilgrimages Have To Stop
(aka "You can stuff your happy festival fireworks.")
(aka aka "Ajyliyda Ajyliyda - I'M ANNOYING HUH? I'M ANNOYING HUH?")

Time: Monday July 24th to Saturday July 29th

Target: After all hell breaks loose and you escape on the airship.



After the last chapter this one is a bit more condensed. We head to Lake Macalania and face one of the trickier boss fights in the game. From there our conversation shows us whom Tidus is wooing the most. We arrive at the Macalania Temple where after a bit of heretical fun we get access to Shiva and another series of boss encounters that will absolutely test the mettle of the players. This is the gut check time to see if you've been paying attention.

Then after a brief and calm intermission we wash ashore on Bikanel Island and have to reassemble our team one by one. Rikku shows us that she can insta-kill robots by the magic of stealing and tells us that we are on the island where the Al Bhed Home is. After wandering about in the desert power-leveling and stealing a king's ransom in Al Bhed Potions we make it to the Al Bhed Home but... it's not having a great day.

Revelation after revelation after revelation and a very bad time had by all, things end on rather sad note. Adventure... ho?

Discussion:
  • Did you have any trouble with the first machina boss? He can be a bit challenging if you're unprepared.
  • Who did you end up riding on the snowmobile with? Apparently Lulu, Rikku, Auron and Kimahri are possible.
  • What are your thoughts on Seymour and his motivation, as well as the motivation of the Guado people who follow him?
  • Did the infamous bout against (SPOILER) Anima ruin your day?
  • Based on what we find out in the Al Bhed Home do you think the kidnappings were justified or were they still a violation of rights, albeit a well-intentioned one?

Have fun folks. See you on the weekend.
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Old 07/24/2017   #132
Jason Tandro
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(duplicate)
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Old 07/24/2017   #133
Omega
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I don't care for playing blitzball any more than is strictly necessary to obtain the full set of reels, the Mercury Sigil, and the World Champion. With that in mind, I prefer to save, open blitz up, see if there's any prizes I want, and then exit out if not. Repeat up to five times, at which point I do a soft reset and start again. I also make extremely liberal use of the option to reset data, as it also affects league/tournament prizes and the like, while also resetting all characters back to their starting levels and stats - an extremely beneficial boon, to be sure, because the game gets more tedious at higher levels (nap shot 3, etc), especially when teams start hiring free agents and cease to specialize in one thing or another (thereby unnecessarily complicating games and making the whole thing take longer). Of course, it also means you have to rehire your players, but I only make three changes so it's not a big deal.

Those changes, for anyone interested, are

Wedge -> RF
Brother -> MF
Yuma Guado - GK

Rin is an excellent player as well, but only at very high levels.
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Old 07/24/2017   #134
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Chapter 5!!!

Did you have any trouble with the first machina boss? He can be a bit challenging if you're unprepared.
I got my ass handed to me because up until that point, I'd kind of been neglecting my sphere levels... so everyone except Auron and Tidus was kind of shit. It took me three tries (because I didn't want to grind). And then I had to do it again (see next question).

Who did you end up riding on the snowmobile with? Apparently Lulu, Rikku, Auron and Kimahri are possible.
Yeah... you know how you hop on that damn thing immediately following that boss battle? Yeah... literally as soon as the cutscene ended (i.e. before I could get to a save point) the power went out. I had to fight the boss again. So... the first ride was with Lulu... and the second was with Rikku.

What are your thoughts on Seymour and his motivation, as well as the motivation of the Guado people who follow him?
Seymour is a psychopath, and the Guado are little more than sycophants. I don't know... maybe somewhere he genuinely believes that genocide equates to kindness, but clearly (SPOILER) having his mother die to become a fayth irrevocably fucked him up.

Did the infamous bout against (SPOILER) Anima ruin your day?
I actually didn't have much trouble with her. Shiva kicked her butt pretty thoroughly (yay for aeons that can heal themselves!) and I had all of Yuna's NulXXXX spells by then, so Seymour wasn't doing horrible damage to me, either.

Based on what we find out in the Al Bhed Home do you think the kidnappings were justified or were they still a violation of rights, albeit a well-intentioned one?
The summoners know what they're signing up for. And they're doing it willingly. While I can understand the Al Bhed not wanting to see them complete their pilgrimage, it's ultimately the summoner's choice. Is a life imprisoned better than a life sacrificed?

On a side note... goddamn Home and it's goddamn missable Al Bhed Primers. I forgot all about them, so... I'm not getting that trophy this playthrough. Grrr....
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Old 07/24/2017   #135
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Jason Tandro wrote: (aka "You can stuff your happy festival fireworks.")
(aka aka "Ajyliyda Ajyliyda - I'M ANNOYING HUH? I'M ANNOYING HUH?")
The AKA's are gold

I'll be playing more of this today, XIV has kinda distracted me this past weekend but I want to keep playing X and catch up!
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Jason Tandro (07/24/2017)
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