Final Fantasy VII Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Final Fantasy VII RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Tetsuya Nomura Says FFVII Includes Modernized Honeybee Inn and Tifa https://www.gameskinny.com/f94g1/tetsuya-nomura-says-ffvii-includes-modernized-honeybee-inn-and-tifa https://www.gameskinny.com/f94g1/tetsuya-nomura-says-ffvii-includes-modernized-honeybee-inn-and-tifa Wed, 19 Jun 2019 10:26:20 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

Final Fantasy VII Remake's director, Tetsuya Nomura, recently spoke with Famitsu magazine about the game and some aspects of it that were adapted for modern sensibilities. Gematsu translated key points of the interview.

As those familiar with the game would probably guess, the Honeybee Inn cross-dressing sequence was near the top of the list. FFVII Remake will include the Honeybee Inn, though certain aspects of it have been changed.

"We’ve made it more modern. If we made the facility like we did in the original game, the physical unease would be staggering, so that was no good…" Nomura said.

Nomura didn't give any hints about what exactly was changed or how.

Tifa Lockheart's character design was another topic of discussion. Her design in the original FFVII is somewhat infamous for its over-exaggerated proportions, proportions which essentially overshadowed other aspects of her physical depiction.

Not so with FFVII Remake. One of Tifa's features the team wanted to emphasize is her body type. Nomura said they gave her defined abs to help emphasize her athletic nature, and that emphasis helped make it easier to keep her signature outfit as well.

The Square Enix ethics department (and this is the first mention we've had that one even exists) also recommended her chest be tightened some, so as to not create "unnatural" situations during combat, hence the inclusion of a new undergarment to prevent problems during action sequences.

Tifa is also meant to be a deliberate foil for Aerith, with the former representing Eastern style and design, while the latter represents Western style.

The interview shifted gears and covered a few things longtime fans can expect that will help keep the game feeling fresh no matter how many times they've played the original. The May trailer showed mysterious black wisps circling Aeirth and Cloud, and Nomura named these entities the Watchmen of Fate; apparently, these beings will appear before the party no matter where they are.

New dialogue options and branching dialogue paths have been added to help give more weight to player choice. Whether these affect elements of the story isn't clear, but Nomura did say the team added several new scenarios to the game — hence the fact it takes up two Blu-Ray discs.

Final Fantasy VII Remake is set for a March 3, 2020 release. Those who didn't get a chance to experience the E3 demo of the game can check out our hands-on impressions to get an idea of what the game will offer.

For more on Final Fantasy VII Remake, see what Square needs to do to modernize the game's characters

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Final Fantasy VII Remake Hands-On Preview: Breaking Limits All Over Again https://www.gameskinny.com/l7b9i/final-fantasy-vii-remake-hands-on-preview-breaking-limits-all-over-again https://www.gameskinny.com/l7b9i/final-fantasy-vii-remake-hands-on-preview-breaking-limits-all-over-again Fri, 14 Jun 2019 08:51:41 -0400 David Jagneaux

My very first E3 was all the way back in 2015. At that event, Sony's press conference had a new trailer for The Last Guardian, announced Shenmue 3, and finally confirmed the existent of the Final Fantasy VII Remake. Now, four years later at my fifth E3, I actually got to play it.

And despite all that, I'm still not 100% sure I believe it's real.

Long Time Coming

Final Fantasy VII is often regarded as the best Final Fantasy game and even the best RPG of all-time. I'd take Final Fantasy IV over VII any day, but I know I'm in the minority with that opinion.

That being said, I can understand the excitement. It's rare that a game with such a storied history and massive following gets the chance at a revival. If you go back and play most PlayStation 1 games, such as Final Fantasy VII, they just don't hold up well at all. This remake is a chance for Square Enix to make it look like we remember it looking with our rose colored nostalgia glasses.

My demo for Final Fantasy VII was split into two parts inside the massive Square Enix booth in the South Hall at E3 2019. The first half took place in a waiting room, a bit like the kind you find for rides at Disneyland. We all gathered on benches and watched a video of Jessie explaining our mission and the game's controls. It's got a very different flow from the original's turn-based combat.

Gameplay in Final Fantasy VII Remake has a lot more in common with Kingdom Hearts than it does the first 10 mainline, turn-based Final Fantasy games. You freely move around the environment and can clearly see enemies in the world outside of combat. When combat starts, it seamlessly shifts to display prompts on-screen as your characters automatically face enemies. You're also free to move around the battle wherever you want.

Pressing "square" uses normal attacks, which build up the ATB gauge, and you can press "X"to enter a slow-motion mode where you can select either an Ability, Spell, or Item to use that will spend some of your built up ATB gauges. Cloud was all about up-close melee with his massive buster sword, obviously, while Barret could do sustained ranged damage with his gun arm. Switching between characters and issuing commands to keep their gauges full was a crucial part of every battle.

The Flow Of Combat

The E3 2019 demo was heavily focused on combat. It featured an early section of the game in which Cloud and Barret are dispatched to place a bomb inside a Shinra facility. I ran around on some metal platforms, opened up treasure chests by hitting "triangle" just like Sora would, and made my way down into the heart of the facility. 

Since you need to pause the action to issue any command other than dodge rolling or doing a normal attack, the fluidity of combat is interrupted a lot. It's a bit jarring since you're encouraged to use abilities often those ATB gauges don't carry over between battles. It would be nice if there was a way to map a go-to ability for quick access or something like that instead of needing to pause battles every single time. 

I also found it a bit annoying that the camera didn't automatically lock onto enemies, unless I was missing a control option. I found that Cloud and Barret would target enemies with attacks no problem, but the camera didn't always face enemies and there was no option to automatically re-center it other than just using the right stick. Trying to move with the left stick, attack and dodge with the face buttons, and move the camera all at the same time was a bit cumbersome. 

Scorpion Boss Fight

This brief Final Fantasy VII Remake demo ended with the iconic Shinra scorpion boss right. I (thankfully) didn't have much trouble here, but the battle took much longer than any of the non-boss encounters from before. Not only did I need to ensure I kept dealing damage to build up my ATB gauges, but I also needed to build up the boss' stagger meter as well, similar to in Final Fantasy XIII.

Switching between characters was quick and easy, just tapping up or down on the d-pad. The boss was a straightforward fight consisting of just brute force until it raised a shield, then targeting the shield, and dodging its big attacks. Nothing too complicated, but certainly some extra layers as compared to the original turn-based version of the game.

It should be interesting to see how different more advanced enemies, such as Sephiroth, will be on the battlefield when they're not forced to take turns while attacking.

Once I staggered a boss I could do even more damage, which was always a great time to use powerful abilities. And as you take damage in combat you'll build up your Limit meter, which lets you use an extremely powerful Limit Break attack once full. Finishing off the boss with a massive blast from Barret's arm canon was the highlight of the demo for me.

 

Final Fantasy VII Remake

I had a blast playing Final Fantasy VII Remake at E3 2019. Visually, it's a staggering technical achievement and despite my initial concerns, the gameplay translates to a more action-focused format extremely well.

During its E3 2019 press conference, Square Enix announced that the Final Fantasy VII Remake will hit PlayStation 4 on March 3, 2020. This release is expected to only contain the first part of the Remake since it will be an episodic series this time.

For more E3 coverage, check the links below: 

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8 Games and Franchises with the Biggest Translation Gaffes https://www.gameskinny.com/3ja5f/8-games-and-franchises-with-the-biggest-translation-gaffes https://www.gameskinny.com/3ja5f/8-games-and-franchises-with-the-biggest-translation-gaffes Mon, 18 Mar 2019 17:30:01 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

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Breath of Fire II

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Fans love to hate Capcom. Sometimes, it seems unfair. Other times, like when you remember Breath of Fire II, then it's completely understandable, and you just step back and let things go. Oh, if only the above picture had been true.

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The early BoF games had an interesting history. Squaresoft handled the first one's localization and publishing. It had some problems, sure. The dialogue and mechanics were rough around the edges but there's still enjoyment to be had with it.

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You would think of the BoF games, the first would have all the terrible issues, that Square would have taken the opportunity to sabotage a potential rival creeping in on its RPG monopoly.

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Or perhaps someone at Square could tell that left to its own devices, Capcom would do that quite nicely on its own.

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Breath of Fire II's translation and localization are full of ludicrous descriptions and sound effects and unclear dialogue. It's a showing on par with gems from the '80s like "all your base are belong to us" and Castlevania II.

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It's near Deborah Cliff...

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There are some classic signs of bad, careless translation as well, where the untranslated text is left in alongside the translated script, or even worse, the writer just added a transliteration, which isn't, y'know... actually a translation.

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Manju are Japanese buns, so this particular instance is one of those cases where you forget  where the writer forgets to delete what they chose not to use. Note the transliteration was highlighted as the key point, though.

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Other errors are less in keeping with the context. I'm not sure about you, but I see what could possibly be a boar — no bears, though.

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It's amazing how punctuation can be so significant. Some bizarre uses of periods in here, except where a period is actually needed.

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At first glance, there doesn't appear to be anything wrong with these two. It's just a nice, normal observation from a character who obviously hasn't seen Nina for a while. Except, she isn't seeing Nina now either.

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This isn't a case where the party members all fold into the leader. The girl with the wings near the table? That's Nina. This woman just told Ryu he's not a little girl anymore, and I can only imagine how surprised he must have been to learn that.

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If these things had remained a relic of the '90s BoF II, that would be a different story. But two different re-releases later — first on the Game Boy Advance and then on the Virtual Console — and Capcom still believed this translation was worth keeping.

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---

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Modern games aren't free from the plague of bad translation, sadly, but their shortcomings certainly do provide an amusing way to pass the time. Whether it's Capcom's carelessness in the '90s, Atlus's rushed schedule from a few years back, or the flood of cheap titles inundating digital platforms, it seems like bad translations are simply a universal factor of gaming life.

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Got any examples of terrible game translations? Share yours in the comments!

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Persona 5

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Including Persona 5 on this list might be controversial. However, there's no denying that good though the game undoubtedly is, it falls far short of Atlus's standards in localization and what fans have come to expect from the company. That departure from the high-quality norm is a bigger gaffe than any translation awkwardness in the game.

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Fortunately, for the most part, the game's dialogue quirks don't come anywhere near Kitty Love and Hollow Fragment levels of bad. You do have to pause for a moment and consider what's being said from time to time, though.

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Morgana is pretty quirky to begin with, so at first glance, this seems like just another manifestation of that personality. But the sentence doesn't technically make sense. "seriously trying to kill us" maybe or "serious about killing us," but serious to kill us is what you'd expect from an inexperienced translator or an early ESL student.

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Conner Kramer put together a site listing some notably egregious errors (and getting some flak for it from the fan community as well), and he added some alternatives for a few of them. Here's an example:

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His revision is a lot more like what fans got in Persona 4 and much more in keeping with the character doing the speaking as well. One would expect a high school principle to say something like "misdemeanor is not tolerated..." as opposed to "you will behave yourself," which is better suited to an elementary school setting.

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There are other signs of carelessness too.

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Image via j-entranslations

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Persona games rely heavily on good dialogue to push the story forward and keep players interested. These issues are hardly game breaking, but they do break the immersion, which makes it difficult to remain invested.

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What lies behind the issue is a mystery. It's possible some elements of localization were a rushed job, since the game was delayed to begin with. But it's equally possible it was simply oversight.

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Yu Namba, senior project manager at Atlus and responsible for a good deal of Persona games' localization processes, once said he couldn't account for everything that happened, but tried to make sure the core narrative was coherent and clear. Other things could slip through the cracks, as they apparently did for P5.

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Kitty Love

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The Switch has taken over the Vita's place as supreme host of otome games. The eShop is flooded with romance games, most of which are geared towards female audiences, and many of which have rather low production values.

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Kitty Love takes the crown for one of the worst translations, though. It's the usual quirky premise for one of these games. The protagonist works at a flower shop by day and turns into a cat by night, because why not.

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As is a growing trend with eShop games, the game's end result is less than stellar, with apparently very little in the way of quality control either by the developer or Nintendo's alleged curation process.

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The quintessential tourist activity — buttering the day

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Some of the errors here aren't quite Hollow Fragment bad, but they do range from the mild to the completely unintelligible, up to the "how could you think this was okay?"

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The protagonist is in cat form in the above, so presumably, this is just a special way of saying he held the cat

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Many of the scenarios just take a bit of figuring out to understand.

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That isn't one of them, though.

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Or that one.

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Okay, so maybe it is on par with Hollow Fragment.

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That's...not good.

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Slapdash niche games riddled with errors aren't exactly new, but there are a couple of things that make Kitty Love stand out as particularly noteworthy.

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The first is the fact that it exists at all on the Switch eShop. Nintendo claimed from the eShop's early days that it would be akin to a curated platform, and not every pitch, even from well-known developers, would be accepted. Fast forward two short years, and it seems that policy has quietly been abandoned.

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What's more, unlike some games, including Hollow Fragment, Kitty Love continues to exist in this form — no patches, no changes, no discounts. Whether the amusing dialogue is worth the price of admission is for you to decide.

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Pokemon Crystal: Vietnamese Version

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Pokemon Vietnamese Crystal has been a thing on the internet for many years, and it's practically a meme generator. The game has a strange history. It started as a Chinese translation of the Japanese script, but despite being considered a Vietnamese version, the game is pretty much entirely in English.

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Players are greeted with this.

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They do? I'm...so sorry

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For some reason, the translator was a bit free with referring to Pokemon as Elf and as Monster, depending on the context, though there didn't seem to be much of a guiding reason behind which scenario got which reference. Either way, there's not much of a link between professor or scholar and monster.

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Some of the text is comprehensible, and you can get an idea of how it went from the original meaning to the slightly garbled one.

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Friend makes sense, since Pokemon are often referred to as friend in the script. Store... eh. Center and shop are close, but that's starting to stretch it (especially when everything in there is free).

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And then you get ones like this, from the next script point.

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It's easy to pick up on the fact that "grasp" is used for catch, but basin?

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This early conversation shortly after the rival makes an appearance is unique, but not actually instructive.

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This one doesn't seem to be very clear either, until you realize he's talking about Mr. Pokemon.

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Apart from the phrasing, it makes sense. I don't know what the original script says, but I imagine it's something referring to Mr. Pokemon as an older man, hence "Grandfather."

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But then you get this again.

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And this.

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The battle system is its own set of special. The theory goes that perhaps there was an indexing error that threw descriptions and translations off, since some are correct, just out of place. Other issues involved transliterating Japanese grammatical particles that weren't intended to be spoken or read.

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But it doesn't explain everything about it or the naming conventions.

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It certainly doesn't explain the unique way of obtaining items, where the game throws the F-bomb your way every time you place an item in the bag.

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Most of the game is almost impossible to understand. If you're interested, you can check out the original Let's Play that sparked the phenomenon. 

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Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment

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Sword Art Online is a popular transmedia franchise, spanning manga, anime, and video games. In most cases, SOA in all of its forms tells a compelling story with likeable characters, and it's garnered a decent-sized following in the West. We even ranked Sword Art Online: Hollow Realization as one of 2017's best anime franchise games.

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Its sequel, Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment had a very, very rough start in the West, though. Like a handful of other Japanese games released in Asia before the West, it initially had an Asian release with an English language option.

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But that translation was bad. In fact, bad doesn't even begin to cover it.

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Japan has its share of race problems, but this wasn't an instance of blatant insensitivity. This is just referring to Kirito, the man wearing black. Though, I don't think he was sexually harassing anyone.

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This isn't exactly what you'd expect to find as a subject line in a hero's inbox.  Fear not, though — it's just monster extermination, SAO Asian translation-style.

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The translation was also just plain lazy. SAO games stray into racy territory now and again, but , this isn't a reference to one of those adult visual novel scenes. This is just bad translation of a symbol with a wide variety of meanings, most of which relate to war, exploration, and things like that.

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Fans who played the version that existed prior to the improved translation patch saw lots of references to penetration throughout the game, in some unusual contexts as well.

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Some of the (many) instances do make me wonder whether the translator had a slight idea of what they were saying and tried to just make a joke out of it.

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This wasn't the only instance of single-minded determination to stick to one translation regardless of context either.

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A standard Japanese greeting is yoroshiku, or the full version, yoroshiku onegaishimasu. It can mean a variety of things, from "nice to meet you," to "let's get along" or "let's work together," among other potential definitions.

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It's useful when you first meet someone, of course. But Asuna and other characters  would say this every time Kirito chose them to accompany him on a penetration — er, that is, an exploration trip.

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Same to you!

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There are countless other instances of unclear or ridiculous phrasing as well.

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This being one good example.

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As a matter of fact, there is.

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Bandai Namco isn't known for always making the best decisions, but it's odd how an established company ended up using a very evidently poorly trained translator for the original English version.

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One of my favorite things about being underground is seeing the sky.

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The Tales of... Games

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Bandai Namco's Tales of... series is known for its endearing characters, interesting plots, and snappy dialogue. However, not all entries are created equally.

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The most recent new Tales of game, Tales of Berseria, was lauded for its darker take on the usually chipper stories and characters, but it suffered from some very uneven dialogue and writing towards the end of the game

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Not all the errors are quite as confusing as this one, though.

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But the biggest issue with the numerous gaffes towards the end of the game is that most of them end up completely unintelligible, like these next two.

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Bandit shrooms don't even exist in the game.

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It's worth noting the voiced lines don't always match with the written dialogue, though. This fact leads some to suspect that perhaps what happened with Berseria was a sudden change in script or direction near the end of production that didn't make it to the localization department and was just crammed in at the last minute.

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Errors in Earlier Games
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Either way, these kinds of issues aren't restricted to modern titles. Clyde Mandellin with Legends of Localization noticed this interesting mistake in Tales of the Abyss that's rather easy to overlook.

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In between all the talk of fonons and fomicry in the early part of the game, it's easy to forget that the seventh fonon was known about for a long, long time. After all, how could Tear be a practicing Seventh Fonist if it was only just discovered?

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The error here comes from a loose translation of the original Japanese, which only said it was the most recently discovered, which doesn't give any kind of time reference.

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Then there was the official English translation of Tales of Phantasia, with this interesting little nugget.

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The original line was Ragnarok, but Mandelin says older versions of Microsoft Word didn't include Ragnarok in the dictionary and only offered Kangaroo with a capital K as the first recommended choice. This one was a careless spell check error that somehow managed to make it through to publication.

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Why the editors of a fantasy game script thought spell check could be relied on anyway is another matter.

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Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana

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The Ys series is one of gaming's longest-running series, with Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana being the most recent entry. While its action oriented gameplay and immersive worlds haven't changed dramatically over the decades, its publication status in the West certainly has.

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Most of the early titles after the original two ended up as fan translations, before XSeed began bringing them over as part of its partnership with developer Nihon Falcom (we won't talk about that Konami incident with Ys VI).

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And then came Nippon Ichi Software America. As part of Falcom's attempts to expand its international audience, it gave the publishing license for Ys VIII to NISA, with some initially unforeseen results.

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This character's bowel habits became a running gag in the original translation, which shouldn't be too surprising since NISA also gave us Esty Dee (STD) as a localization joke (as they did in Atelier Rorona: The Alchemist of Arland).

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It's okay Reja; most of us don't either.

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The game was riddled with untranslated text, randomly scattered here and there — a common error in badly handled games from the '90s, but not something one would expect from modern games. It's certainly not in keeping with what fans expected, which made it stand out all the more.

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Lines like this are common as well, making certain narrative segments and even dialogue a sort of guessing game. But that's not the worst thing.

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The game originally had a passable English translation, especially for most main segments and place names. Why NISA  re-translated isn't clear, particularly when the re-translation was as it was.

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Fortunately, NISA publicly recognized its errors and re-re-translated the script, providing a much better experience all 'round and apparently earning Falcom's trust enough to warrant being given its next big overseas project, The Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel III

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Final Fantasy Games

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Most Final Fantasy games are high quality, well-produced works. That doesn't mean they are error-free, but for the most part, the base games are well-written with good localization.

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Unfortunately, Square Enix has gained a reputation for not really caring about how those high quality works transfer to other platforms based on their lazy ports and similarly low-effort localizations.

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No, the above isn't a screenshot from an alternate Final Fantasy IV universe where the Red Wings were Baron's premiere delivery service with Cecil as their leader. It's the first line of script in the mobile FFIV port.

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The port was supposed to use the DS version's script, but obviously, something happened along the way. It made its own mistakes, while keeping those of its predecessor.

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And then there's the mobile port of Final Fantasy VI.

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Given how many times "esper" appears in the script, it's baffling how this mistake wasn't caught before the game launched, to say nothing of the awkward phrasing that was left untouched.

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Still, the script is entirely readable, unlike some other inclusions in this list. The biggest issue is that errors like this are expected with most SE ports, causing one to wonder about the overall attitude of the port teams and the company towards its franchises.

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Errors in Original Versions
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However, the original versions are certainly not free from errors.

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Final Fantasy VII fans will already know this screenshot contains two errors The potentially less obvious one is Aeris's name. It's actually meant to be Aerith, and that's how it appears in all later mentions in the Final Fantasy universe.

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This was a common translation error in the 1990s, when localization teams were apparently not experienced in differentiating between easily misunderstood Japanese characters. Most people know about the "L" and "R" confusion, but "S" and "TH" is another one.

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There are, of course, other linguistic challenges to overcome as well.

\n

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That above is a wyvern in Final Fantasy V.

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There's not really any reason other than just "whoops" for this one from Final Fantasy X, though to be fair, it was fixed in the HD remasters.

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Video game fans have been dealing with the highs and lows of translation and localization since the 1980s. It's a risk built into a hobby that often relies on media translated from one context-sensitive language to a very different one.

\n

Some of the early examples of translation gaffes have made their way into meme-dom and are among the best-known examples of games gone wrong, games such as Top Wing and Ghosts N' Goblins.

\n

As time progressed, one would think these issues would gradually fade away, with more experienced translators and bigger budgets.

\n

That, however, didn't happen. Through the 1990s and up to recent years, video games still dealt shoddy translations, rushed schedules, and bad management — even some of the bigger games and studios.

\n

Some of the more egregious errors in these games and franchises are what this list focuses on, examples of games that should have been better from companies that ought to know better. Along the way, we'll touch on the reasons behind the gaffes and explore what, if anything, was done to remedy the problems.

"}]]]>
Recap of Announcements from February Nintendo Direct https://www.gameskinny.com/3qc4y/recap-of-announcements-from-february-nintendo-direct https://www.gameskinny.com/3qc4y/recap-of-announcements-from-february-nintendo-direct Thu, 14 Feb 2019 15:48:57 -0500 Ceedi

Yesterday, Nintendo held its first Nintendo Direct of 2019. During the 35-minute presentation, the company unveiled quite a few games, as well as the release windows for some future Switch titles.

There were also new details on Fire Emblem: Three Houses, and the surprise unveiling of a Zelda remake.

Here is a quick recap of the announcements from the direct.

  • Super Mario Maker 2 was revealed and is planned for release in June 2019.
  • Marvel Ultimate Alliance 3 was revealed, confirmed to have online co-op and launch this summer.
  • The 3.0 Update for Super Smash Bros Ultimate is planned for this spring, with the Persona 5 DLC pack coming before April.
  • BoxBoy + BoxGirl was revealed. The game features 270 stages and two-player co-op.
  • Captain Toad Treasure Tracker for Switch received an update that adds co-op; paid DLC is coming that adds 18 courses. A pre-purchase is available today that gives early access to one of the DLC stages.
  • Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is scheduled to release this summer.
  • Dragon Quest Builders 2 is set to release July 12.
  • Dragon Quest XI S: Definitive Edition is set to release this fall.
  • Disney Tsum Tsum Festival was announced; it is scheduled for release later this year.
  • Chocobo's Mystery Dungeon: EVERY BUDDY! is set to release in March.
  • Starlink Battle for Atlas' next update will introduce Star Wolf squad and the rest of the team to Star Fox, Falco, Peppy, and Slippy.
  • A Rune Factory 4 remake for Switch was announced.
  • Rune Factory 5 was revealed to be in development.
  • Oninaki, an action RPG from Square Enix, was announced; it is set to release this summer.
  • A Yoshi’s Crafted World demo is available now; the game is set to release March 29.
  • Fire Emblem Three Houses is set to release July 26.
  • Tetris 99 is available to download now. The game is a free-to-play battle royale where 99 players compete for supremacy.
  • Dead By Daylight is planned for release this fall.
  • Deltarune Chapter 1 is set for release for free on February 28.
  • A Daemon x Machina demo is available now; some participants will be sent surveys to give feedback on the game, which is set to launch this summer.
  • GRID Autosport is set to come to Switch this summer; the release will include all DLC.
  • Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice is set to release on the Switch this spring.
  • Mortal Kombat 11 is set to release on April 12.
  • Unraveled 2 is set to release o nMarch 23.
  • Assassin’s Creed 3 Remastered was announced; the release also includes the game Assassin’s Creed Liberation; it is set to release on May 21.
  • Final Fantasy VII is set to release on the Switch on March 29.
  • Final Fantasy IX is now available on the Switch eShop.
  • Astral Chain, a new Action game by Platinum Games, is set to release August 30.
  • A remake of the Game Boy classic, The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening, is due out later this year.

The latest Nintendo Direct provided a solid layout of the releases coming in spring and summer 2019.

However, notably absent were a few titles that are scheduled for this year, like the new Pokemon RPG for Switch, Luigi's Mansion 3, and the new Animal Crossing. There were also no games announced for the Nintendo 3DS.

It is very likely that further details for these games will be announced later this year at Nintendo's E3 2019 presentation.

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Final Fantasy VII Remake: Modernizing a Cast of Classic Characters https://www.gameskinny.com/c767l/final-fantasy-vii-remake-modernizing-a-cast-of-classic-characters https://www.gameskinny.com/c767l/final-fantasy-vii-remake-modernizing-a-cast-of-classic-characters Tue, 11 Jun 2019 10:07:19 -0400 John Schutt

The Final Fantasy VII Remake is officially on the calendar, and Square Enix has a huge task ahead of it: build and improve upon what many people consider to be the greatest game ever made.

It’s a herculean task, and there may not be any real right answer to everything everyone wants. That said, I’d like to talk about three areas where the Remake can and should take Final Fantasy VII: character, world, and story.

And because there’s a lot of ground to cover, this article is all about the characters we’ve seen so far, including those we saw at Square's E3 conference

Following articles will cover world and story separately.

Character: The Heart of Any RPG

So far, we’ve met some of the core members of the cast: Cloud, Barret, Aerith, and finally Tifa. The relationship between Cloud and the two other women is in many ways the heart and soul of the game, counterpointed somewhat by his growing friendship with the big guy with the gun arm.

The most important task for the writers of Final Fantasy VII Remake is to not only build on these characters but still stay true to their roots. Let’s look at each in turn, starting with Cloud.

Cloud Strife: SOLDIER, Leader, Damaged

Cloud is one of the most complex characters in classic JRPG history. He is a walking mass of conflictions, discordant memories, and competing desires. He wants to love and he wants revenge. He seeks a future without regard to the past, while at the same time being defined by it. If I contradict myself it is only because Cloud contradicts himself constantly.

For those of you who never played Final Fantasy VII, I won’t spoil some of the most poignant and powerful moments from the original game, but I will explain some of the building blocks Square Enix will have to use as a foundation for this first foray into Midgar.

The Cloud we meet at the beginning of Final Fantasy VII is sure of himself, somewhat distant, and generally apathetic of the plights of people around him. To those people who matter to him, he can be caring, understanding, and even warm. Still, there are pieces of himself he cannot properly categorize, and in attempting to save others from worry, hides these pieces deep in his heart.

To stave off any concern, he puts on a brave face, wrapping himself in the guise of a warrior willing to take almost any job for the right price.

As the story unfolds, we get to also see the more playful side of this young man as the women in his life work to open him up — either romantically or otherwise. When he’s free to be himself, Cloud can be silly and dopey, with a dry but ready wit and a kind heart. He’s good at many things but great at very few, and though aware of his shortcomings is loathe to let others see them.

The Remake needs to capture this Cloud, and there are two core tenants of his character they must maintain. They are:

1. He Finds his Own Purpose 

Or at least thinks he does.

Cloud, in the Remake, must remain a driven individual who’s willing to chart his own path without hesitation. He must be willing to entertain other people’s points of view and experiment with new things, but ultimately, he must believe his will to be his own. More than that, we need to come to understand that, even before he leaves Midgar at the end of this first game, that he carries a much greater weight on his shoulders than he lets anyone else know about.

Whether it’s through interactions with Sephiroth like we see in the trailer or through various glitches in memory that seem out of place to us but normal for Cloud, the Remake has to give us the impression that even after 30 hours, we only know a little bit of his story.

2. He is Capable of Great Things

Though not chosen by destiny, per se, the Remake needs to make clear that there is some greater purpose to everything Cloud does. He isn’t in the mercenary business to save the world, but we need to see events swirl around him in such a way that his natural instincts push him in that direction.

Primarily, we need to see his caring and selfless nature, but also his stubbornness and uncertainty in the face of things he doesn’t quite understand. Ultimately, we need to see that the Cloud of the Remake is sure and unsure of himself in equal measure, but that the former wins out more often than not.

Tifa Lockhart — Old Friend, Powerful Ally, Heart

No less conflicted than her childhood friend, Tifa is nonetheless the emotional center of Final Fantasy VII.

Before anyone else comes along, she shows that Cloud’s tough-guy routine isn’t fooling anyone, and that she remembers the warm, hopeful boy of their shared past. She understands the sacrifices she’s had to make, and the blood on her hands. However, she also wants to rediscover the person she’s not seen in five years, a boy turned young man she’s wondered about as she built a life in the slums of an enormous city.

The Remake trailer shows us this exact young woman, who’s shy, uncertain of the path forward but willing to see it through. We also see someone with real power who’s willing to let her fists do the talking when the moment calls for it. We also see a little bit of how she and Cloud interact, how they share their worries and their cares, if only because they come from the same place but have taken different journeys to get there.

In the original game, we learn how Tifa’s road to her Seventh Heaven bar is fraught with many dangers, but that she faced them eagerly for the chance to make the kind of difference she couldn’t years before. We learn that somewhere in her is the kind of strength found in the greatest heroes, but that it’s so tightly bound in doubt and anxiety she finds it difficult to call upon in dire moments.

And while I was impressed with how true Tifa’s character seemed in what little we saw of her in the Remake trailer, I think there are a couple of incredibly important points that Square Enix needs to hit if Tifa is to have the emotional resonance she deserves. They are:

1. Strength of More than Just a Fist

Though she’s shy and has difficulty expressing her true feelings, Tifa is an incredibly strong person, with the intent and will to accomplish almost anything. She can channel this power through her fists, of course, but her real potential is in the comfort and strength she can provide to the people around her.

Even if she isn’t feeling particularly together herself, Tifa in the Remake needs to go out of her way to ensure that those around her are ready and able to get their own jobs done and come home happy at the end of the day.

2. A Willingness to Sacrifice

In the Remake, Tifa should be willing to lay down everything for what she believes in, especially as it involves the people she cares about most. She is a loving person by nature, but she needs to have the will and the strength to put her foot down — especially to Cloud — so their mission ends in success.

Tifa also needs to sometimes wear her burdens visibly on her shoulders but be unwilling or unable to fully voice them, primarily so other people can understand that they are not the only ones with baggage  and that she’s there for them even under that immense emotional weight.

Aerith Gainsborough — Slum Girl, Savior, Mischief Maker

The Remake trailer doesn't paint Aerith in the same light we see her in for most of the original game. In Final Fantasy VII, Aerith is strong-willed, stubborn, sometimes fearless, sometimes frail, and somewhat mischevious. What she believes is, for her at least, what is. She’s able to read someone in just a few moments.

She’s also caring, kind-hearted, and generally open-minded about most things.

Buried beneath all that, however, is a deep-seated reservation about who and what she is. Hounded by ShinRa for her bloodline and its abilities, and accosted on all sides by the voices of the Planet and of the dead, Aerith understands that fate probably has something great in store for her, and that she is to play a vital role in some calamitous event.

In some ways, her burden is greater than almost any other character, and the flirting, snarking, and general forwardness are as much a cover for her own insecurities as they are a natural part of her personality.

The Remake needs to not abandon any of these important aspects of Aerith’s character. She get in the way, be nosy, accept everyone for who they are, and still be competent enough to feel like she can finish the jobs put before her.

If I could boil down Square’s tasks for Aerith in the Remake, they would be as follows:

1. A Plucky Girl From Far Beyond the Slums

Growing up in the slums of Sector 6, Aerith is no stranger to conflict, poverty, or hardship. Though her mother’s home is something of a secluded paradise in a grimy group of huts, she nonetheless lived a life filled with difficulties. ShinRa and her abilities notwithstanding.

We need to see how her experiences have both hardened her to the difficulties Cloud and co. face, but also how those made her empathetic to their struggles. More than that, we need to see even more about how her knowledge of her true nature plays into her interactions with those she’s closest to.

Does she confide more in Cloud than in the original game, and what would that knowledge spark in him if he discovers it, burdened as he is by Sephiroth?

2. Making Some Mischief

Aerith is incredibly perceptive, and no doubt sees the attraction Tifa feels for Cloud, regardless of the circumstances of their first meeting. Trouble is, she doesn't really care and goes a little out of her way to flirt and tempt Cloud when the chances arise.

It’s something Tifa — shy and uncertain as she is — finds incredibly vexing, and in the Remake, there’s plenty of additional space to explore the love triangle.

Of course, I would be remiss not to mention the cross-dressing scene and the pivotal role Aerith plays there. I mean, it was her idea for Cloud to dress up, and she takes no small delight in making sure everything goes perfectly.

If we don’t see that side of Aerith, I think Square’s done her a great disservice.

Barret Wallace — Terrorist, Hero, Father

One of the first things we learn about Barret, both in the original Final Fantasy VII and the trailer we recently watched, is that he believes in what he does, even as it costs thousands of people their lives.

As the leader of the AVALANCHE guerilla group — really a small band of ecoterrorists at this point — he will go to any lengths to see both ShinRa removed from power and the threat they pose to the planet eliminated.

He is also a caring father and someone who carries the weight of those deaths on his shoulders. Not proudly, per se, but as a burden he’s more than willing to bear for future generations. We get a glimpse of his relationship with his daughter Marlene in the trailer, and it’s clear that she means the world to him. The feeling is mutual, as it was in the first game.

From what we saw of Barret in the Remake trailer, there are a few things Square must continue to push forward on if they want to recreate Barret as both true to himself and true to what modern gamers expect out of a character.

1. Tough Guy with a Gooey Center

Barret’s character arc in the original Final Fantasy VII, boiled down to its essentials, is his coming to terms with the fact that what he wants and what he can do are two separate things. He must realize that he is ultimately too small, too vulnerable — even beneath his tough guy veneer — to make the kind of change he truly desires.

More than that, he has to discover that what really matters to him and what he thought mattered to him are also completely separate things. At the end of the day, we as players need to see Barret’s softer side come out, even as he puts on a brave face for everyone around him.

2. He’s Conflicted

Early in Final Fantasy VII, Barret and Cloud argue about the cause the former SOLDIER is being paid to fight for: saving the Planet. At some point in the conversation, Barret exclaims, “The Planet’s dyin’, Cloud!” The line, though only text, betrays something key about Barret’s character: he too sometimes doubts the inspirational speeches he tells his people about their mission.

In the Remake, we need to see Barret’s veneer crack, probably from some snappy wit or apathetic aside from Cloud. As the party grows in size and new people shine new perspectives on Barret’s worldview, it’s my hope that his Remake incarnation has moments of deeper reflection that we get to be a part of and that we can use to learn alongside him.

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While I hope these beloved characters grow, and Square explores them deeper in the Remake, we still have time to analyze, ponder, and find out. The Final Fantasy VII Remake is set to launch March 3, 2020. 

Be sure to check out our other Remake articles as well:

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Final Fantasy VII Remake: Dealing with Loss and Death https://www.gameskinny.com/fp3vj/final-fantasy-vii-remake-dealing-with-loss-and-death https://www.gameskinny.com/fp3vj/final-fantasy-vii-remake-dealing-with-loss-and-death Tue, 09 Jul 2019 11:00:01 -0400 John Schutt

Editor's note: If you've somehow not played Final Fantasy VII, be aware there are major spoilers in this article. Proceed with caution. 

Final Fantasy VII Remake is on its way, and with it will come a whole new generation of players who've never experienced one of the seminal titles in the long-running series. Positioned to be more than just a by-the-numbers rehashing, Remake aims to reimagine, update, and expand on the already massive Final Fantasy VII.

From its combat systems to its narrative, lore, and overall philosophy, nothing will be left to chance in Remake. And despite its genre-defying story beats and deep worldbuilding, one of Final Fantasy VII's most powerful aspects was the way it dealt with death.

There were plenty of big moments — Aerith, the Nibelheim flashback, the final cutscene with the Lifestream and Meteor — but the truly impactful moments were often subtle or hidden away; some only took up a tiny portion of our playtime. Remake has the opportunity to bring us more small moments and to flesh out those that already play a valuable part, especially coming in such a large package

I want to talk about two of these smaller moments and what Remake could do with them. These are the interaction between Dyne and Barret and the death of Tifa’s mother.

Dyne and Barret: The Crushing Weight of Loss

We don’t know much about Dyne beyond that he was Barret’s best friend, wanted to stand up for the ways of his people, and, like Barret, lost everything in the ShinRa attack that destroyed their home.

The difference here is in how the two characters coped with the unimaginable loss of all they had ever known.

Barret returned to the ruins of his hometown to salvage whatever he could of his past before fleeing half-way across Midgar. He found a new purpose in Dyne’s daughter, Marlene, and for her sake, he desired to create a better world — from the ashes of the old, if necessary.

Dyne fell, both physically and metaphorically, into a pit from which he would never truly return. He assumed that everything and everyone he’d ever known or loved was dead. Filled with hatred for both the people who wouldn’t believe him and the ShinRa who deceived them, Dyne wanted to create a different world as well.

However, because he believed his loss to be total, Dyne desired a world in flames, burning with the same rage he would carry for years.

Barret, despite the failings of his past, could nonetheless see a path forward for both himself and those he cared about. He saw it with such clarity, and chased it with such ferocity, that he was willing to put his morals aside if it meant no one would ever have to experience what he had. Though he’d lost his wife and child in the blaze, and even though he knew Marlene was not his by blood, Barret found it impossible to not move forward. To do so would forfeit what little of himself he had left after the ShinRa attack.

Dyne only saw the past, and the visions of hell it continually showed him were the only things keeping him alive. The future, he reasoned, could only be reached if everyone lived in the same pain he did. What purpose was there to living if you could lose everything in just a few moments?

Dyne decided that the future didn’t matter if the past refused to die.

When they finally met again, the boss fight between them was more than just combat: it was a clash of philosophies. It was a clash of hope and hopelessness. Both men, who’d done horrible things in pursuit of their dreams, could not see eye to eye in the face of their shared loss.

There are many ways the Remake can expand upon this relationship, but I think the most valuable would be Barret returning to Corel and finding Marlene while expanding the conversation between Dyne and Barret during their battle.

Much of Barret’s motivation is implied in the original game. While there’s a strength to that method of storytelling, I think seeing what he saw firsthand and controlling him as he fights his way back to Corel to sift through the ashes could have an incredible impact.

Experiencing his hopelessness through gameplay, and seeing with our own eyes how he found a new path through a tiny remnant of his old life, could be a moment well-worthy of the source material.

The Dyne fight in the Desert Prison is somewhat anticlimactic in the 1997 version, and though difficult enough, it doesn’t give either character a chance to explore the pent up emotions both men have contained within themselves for almost five years.

I’m sure both of them have plenty more to say to one another than the few words they exchange in the older title. Such an expanded fight would also give players a chance to see what kind of fighting style a man without hope would use against the man who robbed him of it.

How cruel would Dyne be, and how ferociously would Barret fight back to try and convince his former friend to understand?

We’ll have to wait for the Remake to find out. Hopefully. 

Tifa and Cloud: Loss that Pushes Away and Binds Together

Cloud and Tifa were neighbors growing up. Tifa was in her small mansion, Cloud was in a humble three-room house. We only know of Cloud’s mother, but we know more of Tifa, who lived happily with both of her parents for 14 years.

Cloud pined after Tifa for a long time, and though the two were not close, she did know of him. Then one day, Tifa’s mother fell ill, and after her death, Tifa tried to cross the local mountain to find her again, only to fall and gravely injure herself.

Cloud had followed Tifa longer than any of the other boys, determined not only to protect the girl he liked but become something more in her eyes. His failure would define the next seven years of his life.

The two would grow closer, but the specter of Tifa’s loss would continue to define their relationship. For her part, Tifa could never bring herself to accept Cloud as more than a close friend. It would be years before she learned of Cloud following her up the mountain or of his young longing.

While not emotionally stunted by her mother’s death, in the five years between it and Cloud leaving to join SOLDIER, she found it hard to bring herself to open up to anyone.

More than this, because Tifa’s father blamed Cloud for her accident on the mountain, it’s likely that she was either forbidden or strongly cautioned against getting to know him more than so much.

For his part, Cloud never forgot how he’d tried and failed to protect the one he cared for most, and would eventually dedicate himself to overcoming his own weaknesses — mostly to show her that he was worthy of her affection and praise. That he would fail to join SOLDIER, as he’d vowed to one night under a starry sky, would forever fill him with shame.

After leaving home to prove to both Tifa and himself that he was more than just a boy from a small town, the distance she felt between herself and Cloud faded, and she began to dream of what he might become.

In the Remake, I think we need to actually see Tifa’s mother and discover what kind of impact she no doubt had on her daughter’s childhood. What messages did she leave for Tifa, what promises, admonitions, and disdains? All we see in the original game is Tifa’s reaction to her mother’s death, but the last things we hear, see, or do with a person before they’re suddenly gone can determine decades of our lives.

She doesn’t need to play a big part, at least in the initial scene we see at the well. But I think she should be present even then, because hearing her call out to Tifa or scold Cloud for keeping Tifa out too late, would give us a good idea about what kind of person she was to both characters.

I won’t go so far as to say we want to have additional scenes in the past than exist in the original story, but there should certainly be some mention of Tifa’s mother during the Nibelheim scene. We might get some foreshadowing for the full reveal much later in the story, and maybe start to see, even then, how her death helped define Tifa’s burgeoning love for the man she almost didn’t know.

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Death is the only certainty in life, and it, therefore, it helps define everything we as humans do with our lives and the lives of those we affect. Final Fantasy VII makes a laudable attempt — successful, I believe — to quantify and qualify how different people deal with mortality.

Stories like those we've discussed are valuable not only because they're well written and deal with situations we might know in our own lives, but also because they can help us cope with grief in new ways. Failing that, they can provide us with perspective, especially in retrospect, about how people like us — with flaws, desires, and pasts burdened with guilt or regret —approach those parts of life touched by death. 

As I've reflected on Final Fantasy VII for this article, I've come to a new appreciation for how much it can do to calm the psyche of someone wracked with sorrow, and the hope it can provide to those struggling with grief. Stories like Barret's, about those who've lost so much but found new ways to forge ahead despite their suffering. Stories like Tifa's, who almost missed the one thing that really mattered because all they could see was their pain.

It's characters and situations like these that teach us as players that our own struggles are not necessarily unique even as they differ from those of everyone around us. And even though Final Fantasy VII and its Remake are works of fiction, it is often through such mediums that we come to understand ourselves on a deeper level. 

In short, we can use games like Final Fantasy VII as clear reflections of our own reality, even though its world is filled with magic, monsters, and other fantasy trappings. Its people are still people and they are just as fragile and conflicted as any we might find on the street. And like us, their relationship with death is complex, nuanced, and helps make them who they are.

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Sony Reveals Full Games Lineup for PlayStation Classic https://www.gameskinny.com/6z4sn/sony-reveals-full-games-lineup-for-playstation-classic https://www.gameskinny.com/6z4sn/sony-reveals-full-games-lineup-for-playstation-classic Mon, 29 Oct 2018 10:18:32 -0400 William R. Parks

In 2016, Nintendo proved that there was a strong market for officially released, standalone emulators dedicated to retro gaming, and other companies have followed suit.

This includes Sony with the PlayStation Classic, set for release on December 3.

This morning, the company revealed that their emulator will come with 20 pre-loaded games:

  • Battle Arena Toshinden
  • Cool Boarders 2
  • Destruction Derby
  • Final Fantasy VII
  • Grand Theft Auto
  • Intelligent Qube
  • Jumping Flash
  • Metal Gear Solid
  • Mr. Driller
  • Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee
  • Rayman
  • Resident Evil Director's Cut
  • Revelations: Persona
  • Ridge Racer Type 4
  • Super Puzzle Fighter II Turbo
  • Syphon Filter
  • Tekken 3
  • Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six
  • Twisted Metal
  • Wild Arms

The PlayStation Classic is currently available for pre-order, and will come with two controllers.

How do you feel about the lineup? Are there any omissions you were hoping would be included?

Personally, I would love to have seen Castlevania: Symphony of the NightFinal Fantasy Tactics, or Resident Evil 2 make the cut.

Let us know in the comments below.

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Classic Final Fantasy Titles to Hit Modern Consoles by Next Year https://www.gameskinny.com/wnes1/classic-final-fantasy-titles-to-hit-modern-consoles-by-next-year https://www.gameskinny.com/wnes1/classic-final-fantasy-titles-to-hit-modern-consoles-by-next-year Mon, 17 Sep 2018 11:21:54 -0400 Allison M Reilly

Square Enix announced earlier this week that several Final Fantasy titles are coming to the Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition HD is out now, while other titles will be released later.

World of Final Fantasy Maxima is coming to all three consoles and PC on November 6, while Chocobo's Mystery Dungeon EVERY BUDDY! will be released on Switch and PS4 later in Winter 2018. All the other titles are coming to consoles in 2019. Below is the full list of Final Fantasy games and their respective consoles:

Nintendo Switch
Xbox One
  • Final Fantasy VII
  • Final Fantasy IX
  • Final Fantasy X/X-2 HD Remaster
  • Final Fantasy XII The Zodiac Age
  • Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition HD
  • World of Final Fantasy Maxima
PlayStation 4
  • Final Fantasy Crystal Chronicles Remastered Edition
  • Chocobo's Mystery Dungeon EVERY BUDDY!
  • Final Fantasy XV Pocket Edition HD
  • World of Final Fantasy Maxima
PC
  • World of Final Fantasy Maxima
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The 20 Most Hilarious Arby's Video Game References https://www.gameskinny.com/vb7ih/the-20-most-hilarious-arbys-video-game-references https://www.gameskinny.com/vb7ih/the-20-most-hilarious-arbys-video-game-references Wed, 21 Mar 2018 12:25:43 -0400 Ty Arthur

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It's a good bet we'll continue to see new anime and gaming references pop up in the months ahead, as this is an ad strategy that seems to be working, and there are plenty of games and shows they haven't covered yet.

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I'm actually surprised we haven't seen a Secret Of Mana post yet, considering how they have been on top of the re-releases of classic games in recent months.

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What was your favorite Arby's gaming reference, and what box art creation do you hope to see come up next? Let us know in the comments!

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RIP AND TEAR

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Game: Doom

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Is there ANYTHING this crew can't do with those damn boxes?!? It doesn't even look like they had to paint on the red lower sections but just used the colored portions of the sandwich holders to make it fit perfectly. The only way they could have made this better is if it was an ultra-fast moving video with a chainsaw at the end.

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Goomba Squad! Moooove out!!!

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Series: Super Mario Bros.

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Those classic Goombas 'n Boos will always hold a hallowed place in gaming history, even as the series expands out and drastically alters the gameplay with newer iterations like Super Mario Odyssey. That adorable cardboard Goomba has got me thinking a weekend family art project may be in the works!

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He's the symbol this town needs

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Game: South Park: The Fractured But Whole

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I don't think anyone expected the South Park series to hit its stride with an RPG, but what started with Obsidian's Stick Of Truth and continued with Ubisoft's take in The Fractured But Whole may well be the best games in the franchise. The paper cut-out style of the TV series also clearly lends itself well to cardboard box art!

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You've come a long way, baby

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Series: Fallout

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I'm calling it -- fast food sauce packet art is going to become a recognized thing. I mean, if Vincent Castiglia can paint with blood, why not Arby's sauce?

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This saucy rendition of the Fallout stat system also just reminded me that I'm 95 hours into Fallout 4 but still haven't actually finished the main storyline after getting side tracked by all the DLC. Nobody ruin the ending for me.

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The morning sun has vanquished the horrible night

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Series: Castlevania

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Considering you can eat burgers, mushrooms, and even whole turkey legs throughout this series, the idea of Simon's Lunch isn't too far fetched. The best part about this whole thing (other than the box whip), is that one genius fan immediately commented with this exchange:

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"Fry monster! You don't belong in this world!"

"It was not by my hand I was again made fresh. I was ordered by humans who wish to fillet me tribute!"

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How's your grip strength?

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Game: Shadow of the Colossus

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The wisdom of eating a tower of meat that size is definitely in question, but this is an absolutely perfect mixing of game and fast food imagery to get an idea across. It's clear just from a glance that he's about to fight a colossus, and now I'm kind of wondering if I have what it takes to tackle the meat mountain.

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You might call this a post for 90's gamers, but we think of it as millennial fare

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Game: Chrono Trigger

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Featuring dancing robot Gato from the millennial fair, this Chrono Trigger-based caption was pure genius, and it immediately took me back to Saturday afternoon game sessions from my childhood.

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The sad, cash-grab PC port might be garbage, but the original SNES version is still one of the best RPGs of all time, and I'm absolutely about to load up ZSNES and replay it tonight.

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Sure, you've seen it before, but now it has Aqua.

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Game: Kingdom Hearts 2.8

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How can there be so many games in this series, yet none of them have managed to be Kingdom Hearts III yet? This post was kind of torture for the fans who have been patiently waiting for the next real sequel, although it did hilariously spur on a slew of photo responses in which diners set their keys next to a sandwich.

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Lunch is Strange

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Game: Life Is Strange

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How do you say so much with so little? Even without the caption, it would have been clear what was happening here. Although sadly, the reference did leave the post wide open to all sorts of comments about wanting to rewind time back before eating that meal.

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Overcome the impossible

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Game: Gravity Rush

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This Vita title wasn't exactly well known to the masses at large, so it was sort of surprising to see a sideways image of Kat pop up in the Arby's feed, but clearly the fans were happy to see this lesser-known action-adventure title get a little fast food love. If you remember this game and want to see more, be sure to leave a comment!

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9929 years in the future …

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Game: Nier Automata

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This inexplicably awesome (and constantly genre-hopping) game managed to shake up the GOTY expectations early in 2017 with its combination of androids, giant swords, and killer robot enemies.

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The swords and drones are spot-on here, although I'm kind of wondering if 2B as a "shake" is supposed to be a reference to her exposed behind throughout the game....

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Which is it, wark or kweh?

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Series: Final Fantasy

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Obviously it's kweh, you uncultured swine! OK, I guess it can be both. Seriously though, that sandwich box chocobo is a thing of beauty. I shudder to think of the amount of work that had to go into crafting this guy, and I'm a little disturbed by the connotation of the chicken sandwiches next to him.... Maybe one day we'll get a saddled Chocobo creation in a Final Fantasy Tactics style?

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Understand, understand, the concept of love.

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Game: Jet Set Radio Future

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Whoa, they are going old school and fairly obscure with this one, as the original game came out in 2000, and Jet Set Radio Future came out in '02. I'm hoping the resurrection of interest in this series from the social media posts might spur on some news soon, as Sega has been showing some proclivity towards resurrecting older IPs.

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Beefy AND portable. We dig it.

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Console: Switch

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Speaking of the Switch, you had to know this one was coming, right? I never would have thought "Nintendo console = roast beef sandwiches," but somehow they made the connection with the beefy/portable comment. Those adorable little Switch Joy-Con buttons are also kind of amazing.

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The last Metroid is in captivity. The galaxy is at peace.

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Game: Metroid

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Another totally classic and retro reference, this one takes us way, waaaaay back to the NES days of the earliest Samus adventures. Not only does this post successfully make me want some curly fries, but now it's got me wondering: When is that Metroid Prime 4 finally going to show up for the Switch?

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So glad he crashed the party. 

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Game: Crash Bandicoot N.Sane Trilogy

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For a generation that grew up with Spyro and Crash Bandicoot, news of the remastered N.Sane Trilogy was like a breath of fresh air, and it didn't take long for word to spread on social media. The TNT boxes are fine and all, but it's really the cardboard sleeve gloves that push this one over the top and show off the level of detail.

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It’s dangerous to go alone! Take this.

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Game: The Legend Of Zelda

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While Breath of the Wild might be the only thing Zelda fans care about right now, it's the classics that will always be remembered. They didn't even have to make a cardboard sword for the reference to work. Three triangles tells us Triforce, and in this case, a pretty darn tasty one made out of fried potatoes!

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As one adventure begins, another waits in the shadows. She's one tough cookie!

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Game: Tomb Raider

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The cookie causing the eclipse just brings this one together (but who goes to a fast food place for the cookies?). With the pickaxe in hand, this is clearly meant to evoke the newer reboot series that the new movie is based off, rather than original tank top and shorts Lara Croft.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/o/n/monsterhunter-8700a.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/o/n/monsterhunter-8700a.jpg","type":"slide","id":"181342","description":"

Rally the crew; we're going after the big ones

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Game: Monster Hunter World

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You ever look at that really artistic spray paint wall graffiti and wonder, "How in the hell did they do that and get such amazing can control?" Yeah, now I'm trying to figure out how someone has such amazing Arby's BBQ sauce packet control to create the Monster Hunter guild symbol! Just one slight twitch of the wrist and this could have been a disaster.

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Sneaking into that Mobile Beta

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Game: Fortnite

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The reigning Battle Royale king Fortnite landing on iOS devices is the current talk of the town (with Android users more than a little jealous), so of course Arby's jumped on that immediately.

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This one has it all -- the bush that players love to be while sneaking around the map, and a reference to the difficulty in actually making it into the mobile beta at this point!

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You'd usually think of Taco Bell or Mountain Dew as the gaming champs, but a certain roast beef-obsessed fast food chain is creeping up and taking over with a marketing department that clearly loves anime and gaming culture.

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Social media marketing is a vital part of any company's advertising strategy, and Arby's made a conscious choice to change tactics away from "buy this meal for this price" posts to much more engaging and organic images that people actually want to share.

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Every new post features a hilarious composition of reliable comment types -- a few clueless people trying to puzzle out what that reference means, super fans who are in heaven, a call for the team to get a raise, and backlash from the bored Facebook and Twitter crowds who are upset people are talking about video games for some reason. Every now and again, cheers of joy will erupt in the comments when pop culture references show up that a wider range of people actually understand, such as ClueAliens, or Discworld.

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Despite going really obscure with some of the video game references, the Arby's team has created an advertising juggernaut here because they perfectly meet at the intersection of gaming, nerd culture, and crafting fanatics. Some of these posts ahead are truly works of art that clearly took an absurd amount of time to construct out of Arby's boxes, bags, and even sauce packets!

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Note: All photo rights belong to Arby's -- we're just appreciating these perfect references. 

"}]]]>
We Need More Black Protagonists in Gaming https://www.gameskinny.com/0nwmx/we-need-more-black-protagonists-in-gaming https://www.gameskinny.com/0nwmx/we-need-more-black-protagonists-in-gaming Thu, 25 Jan 2018 14:37:48 -0500 buymymixtape123

One day in 2005, I saw my brother playing a game he called Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. I shouldn't have been watching this game since I was only eight and there were massive amounts of violence and profanity. But there was something that really resonated with me at that time: my brother was playing as someone that was black. This was surprising since in most games I would play, it was either an animal-like character or a white person that I controlled. The only games that I can remember playing from that time that had black playable characters were Beyond Good and Evil and the WWE games. But I felt like Carl Johnson, the main character in GTA: San Andreas, resonated with me because he looked like me.

Well, sort of looked like me.

Even though CJ portrayed many of the stereotypes our community should steer away from, just him being the playable character affected me deeply. Every other game that comes out usually features a white playable character. Look at some of the most popular series right now, such as Uncharted, The Witcher, or even Call of Duty. I enjoy these games, and some of them are my favorite games of all time. But they usually feature some sort of rough-looking white guy, which can be tiring to play as. This also isn't good for promoting diversity in gaming. 

white protagonist in gaming

Be prepared to see this every other game.

This is why I feel games like Mafia 3 and Watch Dogs 2 are necessary. Mafia 3 wasn't the best game, but playing as Lincoln Clay felt like a fresh experience because we got to play as a black male who didn't perpetrate any stereotypes. Watch Dogs 2's main character, Marcus Holloway, was also a character that wasn't plagued with black stereotypes. They both fight injustices because of their race in their respective time periods, even though Holloway's fight with racism is way more relaxed than Clay's. These two characters show the reality of black people in American culture, and I feel that such representation is much needed in the climate that America is in today. 

I remember the time around Mafia 3's release. We were only a few weeks away from one of the biggest elections in American's history. People were freaking out because of the possibility of someone like Trump getting elected in office, which did happen. I remember waking up early in my college dorm the weekend after it came out and running to GameStop to pick up a copy, since I really enjoyed Mafia 2.

One thing I will always remember from the game is the message that plays once you start, telling you that this game strives to be authentic to the time period it takes place in. This gave me a chill because I'm not used to games taking on such a hot topic like racism. It made me realize how needed games like this are, because it felt true and represented injustices I and other people of color face every day. In short, I felt represented. 

 

Lincoln Clay

Lincoln Clay has no stereotypes in his character.

Characters like Augustus Cole from Gears of War, Barrett Wallace from Final Fantasy 7, or even Coach from Left 4 Dead 2 are not needed in gaming. Even though it is undeniable that they do bring character to their games, they are plagued with stereotypes like being a sports star or affiliated with sports, being musicians, cursing excessively, and being extremely loud. Stereotypical black characters in gaming can hinder the experience of the game or just downright insult the player. 

The Opportunity Agenda published a scholarly piece called Media Representations and Impact on the Lives of Black Men and Boys in which they explain the way black characters are stereotyped in media. In one section called "Distorted patterns of portrayal," they explain that positive associations of black males are limited to "sports, physical achievement in general, virility, and musicality." The article goes on:

"While the media’s version of America is populated by some black males intended to inspire, they tend to represent a relatively limited range of qualities to the exclusion of a variety of other everyday virtues."

This isn't a good thing because it limits our community as only being able to strive in sports and other physical or musical activities. This leads us to be limited in what we do and what we aspire to do, because the representation of us that we see is only doing a certain thing, so we start to believe that we can't do anything else besides playing basketball or rapping. 

 

Black video game characters                                      We are more than the stereotypes. 

In the TED Talk "More Than An Athlete," New England Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett talks about how he was only seen as a football player but is truly more than just that. He always wanted to show his creative side by writing and making cartoons, and now he is expressing this creative side. This TED Talk resonated with me and with this topic in a few ways. He explains how you were looked down upon by your peers if you weren't into things like sports and such. This is true, as I used to hide the fact that I was passionate about gaming when I was younger because I was scared my peers would see me as a "nerd" and bully me. It took me a lot of growing up to learn that I should be proud of what I like. 

This TED Talk also shows the fact that not all black people look up to or are represented by sports players or musicians. I can attest to the fact because I remember the first time I played Mass Effect when I was 14, and I looked up to the character David Anderson. He was just this father figure and sort of a mentor to Commander Shepard, and he went against all the stereotypes of a black male in gaming at the time. I feel like he was a great representation of what a black male can be without verging into stereotype territory. 

Anderson

He was also pretty damn cool.

I didn't get into the Final Fantasy series until just a few years ago, but I will always remember Final Fantasy VII because of how turned off I was from the game due to Barrett Wallace. He was loud, as the speech text would make him seem. He would curse at people like Cloud when he was mad, and he was also big and muscular. This seriously disappointed me, because it is not uncommon to find black stereotypical characters in Japanese media. Understanding what makes these things offensive and not playing into stereotypes of black people is something Japanese developers and anime writers need to learn before feeding into it.

Cole Gears

A character we don't need in the gaming or black communities.

Developers also have a problem with making black people the main antagonist or an "evil character" in games. One of the biggest offenders in this regard is Resident Evil 5. Since this game takes place in Africa, you are expecting to see a lot of black people. The problem is, you are playing as Chris Redfield, a white man, in the game who is killing a multitude of black people throughout. This led to controversy and backlash when the game was first shown to the public. I remember being on the playground in school during the 6th grade talking about this to friends, because I was such a big Resident Evil fan and this came as a huge shock. The same can even be said for Resident Evil 4, which has you killing a bunch of Spanish people as a gruff, white man.

                               Resident Evil 5

             Let's not forget how they took Sheva, Chris' black partner in the game, right off                the cover for Jill in the current gen port. Good Job Capcom!

More non-stereotypical black representation can also expand the audience of the gaming community. Just look at Overwatch, a game that gathered a following of people who don't really play video games largely because it has a diverse cast of characters. This doesn't mean that Overwatch doesn't promote stereotypes, as Lucio is a musician and soccer player and Doomfist is an evil character.  

Overwatch

Look at the diversity!

This is not only a thing that people of color deal with. Women and other racial and sexual groups also don't get a fair amount of representation as well. For example, women can be put in roles of being the damsel in distress who can't fight her own battles, like Ashley in Resident Evil 4 or Krystal in Star Fox Adventures. Also, transgender people were misrepresented with the character Hainly Abrams in Mass Effect Andromeda, who was just a thrown-in transgender character who even gives her name before her transition, which trans people find disrespectful and offensive.

ass effect andromeda                                       Let's just never talk about this train wreck again

Another thing I have noticed is the lack of black hairstyles and facial features in games that allow you to create characters. This has been a problem I have complained about for years, as games like Fallout 3, Fallout New Vegas, Mass Effect, and Dragon Age all have one hairstyle (usually an afro) that could fit a black person and a dozen other hairstyles that would just look weird on a black person. 

We need developers to start adding more black, playable characters in gaming, be they black males or females. We need more characters like Lincoln Clay and Marcus Holloway because there aren't many, and that is a shame.

]]>
Gift Guide: Most Adorable Gaming Plushies https://www.gameskinny.com/dv71p/gift-guide-most-adorable-gaming-plushies https://www.gameskinny.com/dv71p/gift-guide-most-adorable-gaming-plushies Thu, 07 Dec 2017 15:09:53 -0500 Lauren Harris

[{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/0/8/2/08205af5-0ccb-4ee0-a6c3-d73163de4593-82b01.jpeg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/0/8/2/08205af5-0ccb-4ee0-a6c3-d73163de4593-82b01.jpeg","type":"slide","id":"175225","description":"
Legend of Zelda 8-inch Plush 
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Price: Link: $11.19; Zelda: $14.39

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Buy it on: ThinkGeek

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We all love heroes, so why not have options? Cuddle with Link, the Hero of Time, and join him to save the princess. Or enjoy sweet princess Zelda and sail the seas. The choice is yours, but the best gifts always come better in twos. 

\n

---

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I hope this this guide has given you many ideas for the best gift for whomever enjoys good games, whether they're old classics or new and exciting adventure games. There’s always room for a cuddly plushy to make its way into the hearts of many gamers. Be sure to pick up an adorable plush today. It’s the best companion anyone could have.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/2/7/b/27bf3a91-576d-4b11-88f7-881595743d00-f1526.jpeg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/2/7/b/27bf3a91-576d-4b11-88f7-881595743d00-f1526.jpeg","type":"slide","id":"175222","description":"
Horizon: Zero Dawn Aloy 6-inch Plush
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Price: $12.99

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Buy it on: ThinkGeek

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Bring Aloy home complete with the Nora Brave outfit and her Focus. She is the perfect gift for your desk. Keep Aloy by your side as she owns her new title as the Seeker. Both of you can join the tribe and stick together, even if it’s just through a long hug. 

\n

 

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"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/4/3/2/4320f0ae-e071-47e0-a268-5c882929db4c-b81ff.jpeg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/4/3/2/4320f0ae-e071-47e0-a268-5c882929db4c-b81ff.jpeg","type":"slide","id":"175189","description":"
Final Fantasy VII Cloud Strife Mini Plush
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Price: $18.95

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Buy it on: Walmart

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This 6-inch plush takes you back to the classic Final Fantasy series. You can save Midgar in style with his SOLDIER outfit and trusted Buster Sword. He’s a great accessory to your gaming collection and the best present for Final Fantasy fans everywhere.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/1/0/7/107257b-37ca9.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/1/0/7/107257b-37ca9.jpg","type":"slide","id":"175185","description":"
Mario 8-inch Plush
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Price: $10.39

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Buy it on: GameStop

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Nintendo's famous mascot Mario is the best gift for the holidays. Let Mario cheer you on when playing your favorite game; he's the best couch buddy around. This Super Mario Bros star will always be the center of attention wherever you take him.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/e/g/mega-man-506c435035832-1024x1024-4fca9.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/e/g/mega-man-506c435035832-1024x1024-4fca9.png","type":"slide","id":"175178","description":"
Plush Mega Man
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Price: $19.99

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Buy it on: Game Over Videogames

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Mega Man is the perfect desk buddy. Take him everywhere, or just enjoy his cute snuggles at home. This plushy is 8 inches and can fit in your bag or next to your heart. You and Mega Man can finally defeat Dr. Wily together, because who wouldn't want Mega Man as a new friend?

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"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/j/u/p/jupr-snorlax-plush-a27d6.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/j/u/p/jupr-snorlax-plush-a27d6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"175176","description":"
Pokémon Snorlax Large Plush
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Price: $24.99

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Buy it on: ThinkGeek

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Who's ready for a comfy, long nap? We sure are. With this large Snorlax pillow you can do just that. You'll never want to use the Poké Flute again. So, enjoy your nap with the king of sleeping.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/k/k/o/kkoi-kirby-plush-rev-55b33.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/k/k/o/kkoi-kirby-plush-rev-55b33.jpg","type":"slide","id":"175175","description":"
Kirby Large Plush
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Price: $31.99

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Buy it on: ThinkGeek

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This cuddly, stuffed plushy is perfect for a good night’s sleep. Kirby can help you drift into dreamland. This adorable plushy is best on your nice couch or in your video game cave. Kirby also provides hugs and snuggles. Let Kirby’s sweet, soft polyester material help you through your troubles.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/i/f/gift-guide-dark-kelly-e45fa-74670.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/i/f/gift-guide-dark-kelly-e45fa-74670.png","type":"slide","id":"175235","description":"

Looking for a good gaming plush? These are some of the best gaming plushies out there. There are over a thousand to choose from, but we’ve narrowed it down to just a few of the best ones we think you should consider. Let’s look at some of the best gaming plushies out there. 

"}]]]>
Gift Guide: Best Gifts for Final Fantasy Fans https://www.gameskinny.com/l2qk0/gift-guide-best-gifts-for-final-fantasy-fans https://www.gameskinny.com/l2qk0/gift-guide-best-gifts-for-final-fantasy-fans Fri, 01 Dec 2017 04:12:02 -0500 bazookajo94

[{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/w/a/l/wall-fct-660x330-8820b.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/w/a/l/wall-fct-660x330-8820b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"175136","description":"

And that was out gift guide for Final Fantasy fans

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Hopefully you found the perfect gift for the person your life who hasn't stopped playing Final Fantasy for the past 30 years. Whether it's in the form of a jewelry, upholstery, or tomfoolery. 

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And if all else fails, just get them Kingdom Hearts which has a ton in common with FF, including a whole bunch of characters. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/q/e/sqe817729-9cd8b.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/q/e/sqe817729-9cd8b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173290","description":"

Chocobo's Crystal Hunt

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Price: $19.99

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Buy It: Miniature Market

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Why get another Monopoly set featuring beloved characters when you can get a whole new board game about them entirely? Like this chocobo board game, Chocobo's Crystal Hunt. You get to try to steal some crystals from the other chocobos before they get to yours first. Seems fun, cute, and competitive.

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How great is that? Your very own Final Fantasy board game surrounding the cutest creatures around. Now if only Popocho could be there...

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It's affordable too, so grab this game for a list price of $19.99 and go crazy.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/l/6/4/l640-77acd.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/l/6/4/l640-77acd.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173289","description":"

A Final Fantasy Periodic Table 

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Price: $6.99

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Buy It: eBay

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For the gamer who likes both Final Fantasy and paying attention in science class, get them this awesome silk poster depicting the periodic table as Final Fantasy characters. I don't know why this exists or why I haven't found it before, but it doesn't matter anymore -- I once was lost, but now I'm found. 

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Display all your nerdy tendencies with this guy for a list price of $6.99.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/7/0/570xn1094280171-k2jc-65eb4.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/7/0/570xn1094280171-k2jc-65eb4.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173288","description":"

Final Fantasy IX Playing Cards

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Price: $27.00

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Buy It: Etsy

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You know what's just as fun as video games? Card games. And though you could settle with the old, bent cards you rummaged up from the bottom of your grandma's junk drawer, why not try something newer. Something fresher. Something fresh as heck, like these Final Fantasy IX playing cards. They're beautiful, they're $27.00, and they will be the talk of the party if you bust them out and make all your friends play Go Fish (because at least everyone knows how to play that game...).

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Also if you think you've got what it takes to design your own Final Fantasy deck, head over to this website and go crazy. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/4/1/o/41o-ola4r7l-d6fd7.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/4/1/o/41o-ola4r7l-d6fd7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173287","description":"

The Sky: The Art of Final Fantasy Book 1

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Price: $29.99

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Buy It: Amazon

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Don't try to look me in the face and say that you don't think the art in Final Fantasy is beautiful. Just try saying those words. I dare you. 

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For the people in your life who enjoy looking at art outside of the video game, this art book is the perfect gift. It's like giving them an art gallery they don't have to go outside of their house to visit.

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What's more, there's three of these bad boys. Get the bundle of all three for $76.68 or buy the first book in hardcover for a list price of $29.99. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/4/1/w/41wb47xizl-0c192.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/4/1/w/41wb47xizl-0c192.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173286","description":"

NES Entertainment Flask - Final Fantasy Edition

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Price: $19.99

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Buy It: Amazon

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No, this is not an NES cartridge (though what kind of audacity would I have if I was like, "Oh, you're at a Final Fantasy gift guide? Here's 10 gifts. Number 1: Final Fantasy.")

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This is actually a flask. Like, for drinking. Fun, right? There are a few parody titles to choose from, but this is the Final Fantasy—excuse me, Fine Ale Fantasy—though personally, I'd go for the Double Flagon one...

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Pick your poison today for only $19.99.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/i/m/g/img-0103-7b289.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/i/m/g/img-0103-7b289.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173285","description":"

White Mage Hand Warmers

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Price: Your precious time.

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Buy It: 8-bit Knits

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Y'all like knitties?

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Sorry -- sometimes when I get excited I start speaking in tongues. And discovering the knitting wonders of 8-bit Knits has got me very excited. Sometimes you just want to hand-make a present for someone, and there aren't always a lot of nerdy patterns readily available.

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Thankfully, 8-bit Knits has created their own nerdy patterns -- like a Princess Leia buns hat or a Phoenix Wright hat -- and shared them with the world. And most of them are free, including this dope pattern for White Mage hand warmers.

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So warm your best friend's hands this season with only the cost of yarn and your fortitude (too bad there's not a spell to increase patience).

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/d/d/ddd-eb0ec.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/d/d/ddd-eb0ec.png","type":"slide","id":"173284","description":"

The Great Ultros Off Kanagawa Throw Pillow

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Price: $27.00

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Buy It: Redbubble 

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Maybe you like your video game merch to be subtle. I know I do. I love that rush when someone who doesn't play video games says, "This is cute", and you get to drop the, "Thanks, it's from a video game!" bomb. So let's get subtle with this mashup pillow of Ultros and the painting The Great Wave off Kanagawa. It wouldn't even matter if someone didn't know this was a Final Fantasy villain -- they'd just think it was a neat twist on the classic painting, and you'd get to sit on your couch in smug satisfaction just knowing what it really was.

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You can buy the pillows in various square sizes ranging from 16 inches to 36 inches, with the choice of buying only a  cover or including a pillow.

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Snag your 16" x 16" pillow (with insert) today for $27.00.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/u/n/t/untitled-47854.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/u/n/t/untitled-47854.png","type":"slide","id":"173283","description":"

Cactuar Scarf

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Price: $24.92

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Buy It: Redbubble

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Is there anything in this world that can keep a cold heart warm? Probably not. And I doubt this Cactuar scarf would suffice as it's more decorative than functional in cold weather, but hey -- it's super cute. So bundle up your bae's aesthetic this holiday season for only $24.92.

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Maybe the thoughtfulness of the gift will warm something. 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/6/0/4/6044cfbdc53e969c8f1836e7f934ab85-738-389ce.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/6/0/4/6044cfbdc53e969c8f1836e7f934ab85-738-389ce.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173280","description":"

NieR: Automata Red Agate & Onyx Bracelet

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Price: $97.99

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Buy It: Square Enix

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If you're not frightened by expensive price tags, then venture your heart and wallet directly to the Final Fantasy source -- the Square Enix Store. You can find a lot of great merch there, such as items from NieR Automata. Or, more specifically, this red agate and onyx bracelet. Like, how cute is this?

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However, the NieR products are only available for pre-order right now, with an unofficial release date of February 2018. So, in addition to the cash you're gonna have to drop for this gift, you'll also have to write a heartfelt "IOU" or a heartfelt "hope you can wait two months, lol."

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/7/0/570xn1233634458-9b2c-e5b76.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/7/0/570xn1233634458-9b2c-e5b76.jpg","type":"slide","id":"173279","description":"

Final Fantasy X - Yuna Pendant Necklace

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Price: $47.50

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Buy It: Etsy 

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Sometimes when you wear the right necklace with the right outfit, it starts to feel like the planets have aligned and the sun's rays shine solely on your face. Just think of the power you could project if you paired a killer cosplay with the actual necklace the character wears.

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So grab the necklace of Final Fantasy X's beloved Yuna, and finally know what it feels like to be the master of your own fate.

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Alternatively, if you have a wallet bigger than a Titan, there's another Yuna necklace on the Square Enix website that you can purchase for $220.99.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/i/f/gift-guide-dark-kelly-65f0e.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/i/f/gift-guide-dark-kelly-65f0e.png","type":"slide","id":"173291","description":"

It's a scary world out there. Just when you think you've got your bearings on all the monumental changes happening around you, suddenly something new happens, throwing you off balance once again.

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Despite all the unpredictable changes that can happen at any given moment, at least there's one thing in this world that is inherent for everyone -- Final FantasyIt's been there for as long as you can remember, and you can't recall a time when you've ever thought, man, sure wish Final Fantasy would just leave my life forever.

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In fact, you want more Final Fantasy in your life, and what better way to do that than to give great gaming merch to friends and family! Maybe they're not prepared for the changes in their life either, so here's a way to give them another reminder of that constant presence in their life.

"}]]]>
20 Years With Final Fantasy: Looking Back at FF7's Impact on Today's Gamers https://www.gameskinny.com/2e5gm/20-years-with-final-fantasy-looking-back-at-ff7s-impact-on-todays-gamers https://www.gameskinny.com/2e5gm/20-years-with-final-fantasy-looking-back-at-ff7s-impact-on-todays-gamers Sun, 01 Oct 2017 08:00:01 -0400 Joshua Broadwell

[{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-closing-096e5.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-closing-096e5.jpg","type":"slide","id":"169966","description":"

Looking Back to Look Forward

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These reflections certainly demonstrate Final Fantasy VII's quality and enduring strengths. But they do more than that. They show how influential good games (like good books) can be. Whether they shape the way we view and evaluate other games, sit snugly alongside some of our happiest childhood memories, or continue to affect our lives in the present, they leave their mark and shape the way we see ourselves and the world around us.

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Image via Final Fantasy Wiki

\n

What are your memories of when you first played Final Fantasy VII, and how did it change your approach to games and gaming? Share your story with us down in the comments!

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-header-55836.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-header-55836.jpg","type":"slide","id":"169963","description":"

Amy Turnbull

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Community contributor Amy Turnbull's experience with FF7 was similarly formative, though she is not quite so reticent about crediting it with shaping the course she took in life.

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"The Final Fantasy games were my introduction to the world of JRPGs (and RPGs in general). Though FF7 wasn’t my first game in the series (that credit goes to FF9), it is the one that left the longer-lasting impression, and solidified my love for the genre to this day.

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The first time I played FF7, I found that I was very soon drawn into the individual characters’ storylines. I wanted to know more. Who were these people? What were their histories? Where would they – and I as the player – be headed together? I even found myself experiencing another first – that I was just as invested in the antagonist’s storyline as the protagonists’. Instead of my usual attitude surrounding the bad guy in games (basically, beat that bugger then relish in the subsequent glory), I wanted to know everything I could about this alluring being. I craved Sephiroth’s story just as much as I craved Cloud Strife’s. There was just something very intriguing about all of these characters that left me wanting to learn more, and so I was quickly hooked in my need to experience this game in its entirety.

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FF7 is a huge game (multiple discs huge!), and I found myself playing it at every spare opportunity. It was a little overwhelming at times, as I was still not used to the vastness of RPGs. There wasn’t just the main storyline to complete, but all the wonderful little side-quests, and so many random battles along the way. I’d played video games for a good 10 years before finding FF7, but this was the first time I was bitten by the completionist bug. I couldn’t get enough of it!

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From that moment on, the Final Fantasy games became a favourite series of mine, and though I’ve continued to play many of the newer releases as they’ve come out, there is something very special about FF7 that just can’t seem to be topped.

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It’s also the game that propelled me into the online gaming community. Never before had I thought to seek out other gamers online, but after a little Googling, I found a rich fan community with discussions, fanart, articles, and so much more dedicated to this rich game. And just like that, I came to find a seemingly endless world of content dedicated to every game you could think of. I guess, in a way, FF7 paved the way to the point I’m at today – contributing to that very same community as a games journalist, something teenage me never could have imagined as a possibility. Yep, this game definitely deserves the very special place it holds in my heart."

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Image via YouTube

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-ab08f.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-ab08f.png","type":"slide","id":"169958","description":"

Ashley Gill

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Guide Editor Ashley Gill reminisced about how Final Fantasy VII's epic story not only introduced her to a new style of game, but also offered her a new way of interacting with other people.

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\n

"Final Fantasy 7 was my first console RPG and my first PlayStation game. We were really poor when I was growing up, so I basically just played NES at home until 1998. My mom started making more money and got married, so I made the jump to Genesis and then to PSX pretty quickly. We got FF7 from a pawn shop, not sure if it was used or not.

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I'd played PlayStation games before at friends' houses, but nothing prepared me for the overall experience of FF7. It completely blew me away.

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The funny thing was, I didn't have a memory card for a good two weeks after I got my PlayStation. I'd come home from school or spend the weekends just playing the first few hours of the game again. For a couple days I just let it sit overnight, you know, as we did in the cartridge eras. I got pretty good at rushing through Midgar by the time I got my memory card.

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I didn't know spanning stories existed in games before FF7, and it completely changed my taste in games. I went from FF7 to Xenogears, FFT, Legend of Legaia, Tales of Destiny -- those were my first real non-text-based RPGs. And of course, I wandered to the AOL message boards for many of these games and ingrained myself into their communities. That set the stage for my social life moving forward, though whether that's good or bad is subjective.

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I don't like to say something as cheesy as 'Final Fantasy 7 changed my life', because I'm contrarian to a fault and that's just not my style. But if not for it, I never would have found their communities and forged the years-long relationships I did. Not to mention experiencing some pretty ace games."

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Image via NeoGaf

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-c993d.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-c993d.png","type":"slide","id":"169961","description":"

Justin Michael

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For others GS community members, Final Fantasy 7 had an even more transformational effect -- ranging from opening the door to new game genres, all the way to establishing a whole way of life. Staff writer Justin_Michael's time with the game fits in with the former and takes into account every minute detail of the game.

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"The first time that I played Final Fantasy 7, I was around 13 and had never played a JRPG before. Up until that point, I played mostly platformers or shooter titles -- so when my friend lent me his copy, I had no idea what I was in for. I remember how impressed I was with the cinematics and how immersive the story was.

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...I felt like I had a connection with the characters, so much so that I actually got a Fenrir tattoo! And man, was I pissed when Sephiroth killed Aeris, as I had spent hours upon hours leveling her up.

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The minigames were also a great touch, my favorite being the Fort Condor minigame where you had to buy troops to fend off waves of Shinra forces. All-in-all, FF7 was my gateway to RPGs -- one of my favorite genres to play now."

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Image via RPGsquare

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-14325.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-14325.jpg","type":"slide","id":"169957","description":"

Kengaskhan

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A game with these qualities does not easily fade from memory . Alongside a sense of nostalgia -- a powerful force of its own -- games like FF7 often create powerful emotional connections between the player, characters, and story, as writer Kengaskhan discovered.

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"I was pretty young when I first played Final Fantasy VII...I was in middle school at the time, so I would've been around 10 or 11 years old. To be honest, I only had a superficial understanding of the plot, but it was one of the first times I actually paid any attention to a game's story, and there are some things about the game that I don't think I'll ever forget. I'm not going to say that FF7 is my favorite game (though it certainly was at the time), but I firmly believe that it's why I got into gaming.

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You'd probably guess that I'd beaten FF7 multiple times by now, but I've actually only played through it twice. Unfortunately, I never got a chance to play the game a second time until very recently, as the game CDs were lost when we renovated our basement...So for over a decade, all I had for FF7 were these very fond memories for a game that I only sort-of-remembered -- an undying nostalgia that slowly intensified as the years passed.

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I remembered watching my dad play, and [him] quitting the game when he got stuck like 15 minutes into the game when he couldn't climb a staircase (I picked up where he left off). I remembered wandering through the Sector 5, 6, and 7 slums and thinking, "Wow, this place is pretty charming despite being a total dump," although maybe not quite that articulately. I remembered that feeling of dread when I had to fight those inexplicably alien creatures Sephiroth left in his wake at the Shinra Headquarters. I remembered not understanding how to navigate Gold Saucer. I remembered calling Red XIII "Red 7" and how I always made sure to include him in my party. I remembered the music.

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During my second playthrough a few years back, something pretty peculiar happened -- I realized that, of all the things I could forget about FF7, I forgot about Cloud's own struggle with his memories, about all the mundane things he did remember, and the few crucial things he couldn't.

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I'm not usually sure how to describe the feeling of immersion or personal investment we get when playing games, but that moment of realization for me was the most a game had ever resonated with me."

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Image via Well-Rendered

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-0dfb2.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-0dfb2.jpg","type":"slide","id":"169962","description":"

ActionJ4ck

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ActionJ4ck's experience with Final Fantasy 7 is a similar testament to the game's quality of design. For this GS Senior Mentor, encountering the game almost 15 years after its initial release didn't diminish any of its great qualities.

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"Unlike a lot of people, I actually played Final Fantasy VII for the first time on PC in 2013. I had been a big Final Fantasy fan for a while at that point and had obviously heard all the fanfare surrounding the game, but I went in unsure of whether I was about to experience a timeless classic or something that was surely impressive at the time, but has not aged well.

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I ended up completing it in about a week of very dedicated play. I wouldn't say that I was blown away by it or that it was even my favorite Final Fantasy game, but I also couldn't deny that it was a fantastically-crafted game that held up very well -- and if I had first played it back when it was initially released, it probably would have changed my perspective of gaming. The pacing was excellent for a JRPG, the story was better written and more coherent than most of its genre counterparts, and the graphics were much better than most of what I played back in the day. All in all, I felt that even with the passing of time, Final Fantasy VII truly exemplifies the best that a JRPG can be."

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Image via Twinfinite

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-46925.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-46925.jpg","type":"slide","id":"169960","description":"

Lucky Jorael

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For Senior Mentor LuckyJorael, Final Fantasy 7 was the perfect combination of story, world-building, and character -- all coming together to create something unique and inspiring.

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"I switched off playing FF7 with my best friend at the time...We were both in utter awe as we watched the cinematics, and loved every single second of it. We did every side quest and killed every Weapon, gathered all the Materia we could find, and bred Chocobos until we finally got a black one. We totally didn't cry when Sephiroth killed Aeris -- and argued later about why we couldn't just use a Phoenix Down to revive her. Once we beat the game, we both just kind of sat back on his old couch, absorbing the adventure we had just gone on, and the fact that it was over.

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Then we played it again from the start.

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FF7 really set the stage for my love of RPGs. From 7, I went on to play Baldur's Gate and Icewind Dale, as well as FF8 and 10, and I've spent thousands of hours playing Final Fantasy Tactics -- the original on PS1, War of the Lions on my PSP before I left it on a plane, and War of the Lions again on my iPad. FF7 guided me to what a good game was and what games could achieve. Even as a kid, I knew that sensationalist news about games making kids violent and games not being art was complete crap. I had proof that both statements were wrong."

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Image via Well-Rendered

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-header-9c265.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/v/i/i/vii-header-9c265.png","type":"slide","id":"169956","description":"

Final Fantasy VII just just started celebrating the 20th anniversary of its international release on October 2, 1997. Widely regarded as the best game in the Final Fantasy series, FF7 is also proclaimed as one of the best RPGs of all time. That's high praise for any game -- let alone one in a series that essentially made the RPG genre what it is today.

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But what about this game makes it so special for so many people? Is it the mold-breaking story, the grand scale of the entire game, or the memorable characters? We asked our GameSkinny staff and community writers that same question, and here is what they had to say about how FF7 impacted them as gamers and shaped their gaming passions moving forward.

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Image via Download Wallpaper

"}]]]>
Top 10 Genderbent Cosplays https://www.gameskinny.com/vjd9p/top-10-genderbent-cosplays https://www.gameskinny.com/vjd9p/top-10-genderbent-cosplays Thu, 15 Jun 2017 16:22:00 -0400 Angelica Dimson

[{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/e/n/genderbent-nintendo-cosplay-cdf48.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/e/n/genderbent-nintendo-cosplay-cdf48.jpg","type":"slide","id":"162140","description":"

Now you've seen some amazing Rule 63 cosplay! If you want to see more, I recommend looking at this Tumblr group, Rule 63 Costuming

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Hopefully, you enjoyed some of these entries. Do you have any favorite genderbent cosplays of your own? Leave a comment below on which one is your favorite!

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(Source -- Genderbent Mario Characters Cosplay: bluupanda)

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/l/malemorrigan-11384.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/a/l/malemorrigan-11384.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161352","description":"

1.) Morrigan (Darkstalkers Series)

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Known to be a very sexy succubus, Morrigan from Darkstalkers is a very vain character who cares little for her royal duties as a princess of the demon realm, Makai.

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Capcom's Morrigan receives an amazing genderbending take from cosplayer Kiefer Garcia. On his Deviantart page, he has even more genderbending cosplay -- including different costumes of male Morrigan.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/c/a/scarecrowfemale-741c5.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/c/a/scarecrowfemale-741c5.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161402","description":"

2.) Scarecrow (Batman: Arkham series)

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Within the Arkham series, Scarecrow plays a creepy, fourth-wall-breaking role, making gamers think their game has crashed, but in reality, it turns out to be mind tricks to get their hearts pumping.

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Flor B's female Scarecrow is no exception in scaring me. Just look at all those needles on her fingers! I don't want any shots.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/7/9/5/79593afd44d5b2d.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/7/9/5/79593afd44d5b2d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161403","description":"

3.) Vi (League of Legends)

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Vi from LoL likes to think of every problem as a brick wall waiting to be smashed by her hex gauntlets.

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Ryan Brandt, aka Fake Nerd Boy, cosplays a menacing male Vi that looks like he is about to bust one of those walls.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/u/m/tumblr-n61eeaoq021sam2qwo1-500-495cc.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/u/m/tumblr-n61eeaoq021sam2qwo1-500-495cc.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161360","description":"

4.) Psycho and Mad Moxxi (Borderlands Series)

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I know this technically counts as two costumes, but "The couple that cosplays together stays together." That's Ethan and Lauren's mantra on their Facebook page, Thousand Faces Cosplay, so we'll stick with this as 'one' amazing entry. 

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According to the Fashionably Geek article where this picture was featured, this shoot was done at an abandoned meat packing plant in St. Louis. I hope Lauren screamed out in Psycho fashion, "You're gonna be my new meat bicycle!"

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/z/a/r/zarya-d835e.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/z/a/r/zarya-d835e.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161401","description":"

 5.) Zarya (Overwatch)

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Zarya, a classic tanking character in Overwatch, loves to play or fight with her particles -- particularly her particle cannon (no pun intended). 

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Jecht's Zarya stands, looking impressive and intimidating. He's ready to stand strong alongside other heroes, and he'll need those muscles to carry his weapon around.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/l/a/d/lady-sephiroth-ff7-onpaperwings-d4tos38-d23d0.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/l/a/d/lady-sephiroth-ff7-onpaperwings-d4tos38-d23d0.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161355","description":"

 6.) Sephiroth (Final Fantasy VII)

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The main antogonist, Sephiroth, is a well known villain throughout the Final Fantasy franchise.

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Here, a fem Sephiroth, cosplayed by Crystal Graziano, glares icily. With her longsword and cutting gaze, she's ready to strike down Cloud and his team, especially Aerith (Too soon? Probably not).

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"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/e/m/femkratos-a6ec1.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/e/m/femkratos-a6ec1.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161398","description":"

7.) Kratos (God of War Series)

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Ashlee King nails a female Kratos, still looking as stern as ever. Just don't get on her bad side, unless you want to end up on the wrong side of her swords.

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Ashlee's cosplay gives a cool twist to a female Kratos with her bright red hair, unlike the usually bald male Kratos.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/u/m/tumblr-nsqst47hcn1qisb8yo1-500-5cf0f.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/u/m/tumblr-nsqst47hcn1qisb8yo1-500-5cf0f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161363","description":"

 8.) Princess Peach (Super Mario Series)

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Another Nintendo princess becomes a prince. Spensaur Cosplay creates a very regal male version of Princess Peach, that seems to be in another castle.

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Similar to the genderbent Princess Zelda cosplay, Spensaur stays true to Princess Peach's usual colors, but still retains a very delicate look.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/r/i/princess-zelda-male-cosplay-artif-d8skdbr-2eacb.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/p/r/i/princess-zelda-male-cosplay-artif-d8skdbr-2eacb.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161357","description":"

9.) Princess Zelda (The Legend of Zelda Series)

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Jeff Pelletier Tremblay cosplays a male Princess Zelda, or should I say, Prince Zelda. What's even more amazing is that he stays true to Princess Zelda's color scheme, and the costume still looks masculine. 

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The costume is also reminiscent of Zelda's costume from Twilight Princess, noted by the amount of detail in Jeff's shoulder pauldrons.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/u/m/tumblr-mub1pzvb0n1skyqwlo7-500-9d202.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/t/u/m/tumblr-mub1pzvb0n1skyqwlo7-500-9d202.jpg","type":"slide","id":"161404","description":"

10.) Nathan Drake (Uncharted Series)

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A female Nathan Drake, cosplayed by Courtney Coulson, reads over her notes while in search of lost treasure. She looks like she is traversing the desert of Uncharted 3, with that signature scarf from the game's box art. 

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Hopefully, she finds what she's looking for soon before the desert sun gets to her.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/headerimage-9e512.png","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/headerimage-9e512.png","type":"slide","id":"161458","description":"

So it's summertime, which means there's going to be a lot of fun conventions coming up: San Diego Comic Con and Anime Expo to name a few.

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That also means we'll get to see some amazing cosplays in the coming months. And if anyone knows cosplay Rule 63, that means there'll be a lot of genderbent cosplays, too.

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So to highlight some of the best genderbent cosplays from years past, here's a list of my Top 10 Favorite Genderbent Cosplays!

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(Source -- Female Link Cosplay: Ryuu Lavitz, Male Link Cosplay: Laovann)

"}]]]>
My dad could beat up your dad: Father's Day video game battle royale https://www.gameskinny.com/l2ng8/my-dad-could-beat-up-your-dad-fathers-day-video-game-battle-royale https://www.gameskinny.com/l2ng8/my-dad-could-beat-up-your-dad-fathers-day-video-game-battle-royale Fri, 16 Jun 2017 18:21:23 -0400 Ty Arthur

[{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/r/o/u/round1-5a30d.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/r/o/u/round1-5a30d.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160316","description":"

Now that the dust has settled and the match ups are finished, we want to wish all the gaming dads an amazing Father's Day this year!

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What did you think of our dad vs dad picks, and what other video game Father's Day grudge matches would you like to see go down?

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Let us know in the comments section below!

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide10-d1c50.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide10-d1c50.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160314","description":"

James McCloud (Star Fox) vs. Splinter (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles)

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So, these are maybe the two coolest dads a kid could ever dream of having, and picking one is sort of impossible for anyone who grew up in the late 80s or early 90s.

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Anthropomorphic rat ninja dad who dispenses wisdom and lets you eat inordinate amounts of pizza while playing with dangerous weapons, or anthropomorphic fox and sunglasses-wearing space pilot with a gun dad who lets his kids blow things up in glorious 3D?

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How this battle would go depends on the arena: one one one, or does James have his ship? Even while piloting a spacecraft, I get the feeling Splinter has the edge here, with his mystical ninjitsu alerting him to the presence of enemies and his ability to bite through solid metal.

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Since James was previously taken down by a pig-man, we know he doesn't fare well against other anthropomorphic animals as well... I think in this case Splinter wins, although that probably starts a war between Fox McCloud's crew and the ninja turtles, which I now want to see in some sort of comic book form.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide9-68a55.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide9-68a55.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160313","description":"

Harry Mason (Silent Hill 2) vs. Barret Wallace (Final Fantasy 7)

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Here we've got two dads trying to keep their daughters safe in a world gone mad.

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We've also got some serious "firsts" with both characters. Silent Hill 2 was probably the first time we saw an on-screen rape in a PlayStation game, while Barret was among the first foul-mouthed characters to throw out those four letter words in a major U.S. RPG release.

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Barret's gun arm and access to materia seems like an insta-win, but don't discount Mason just yet! He battled the supernatural forces of Silent Hill and came out the victor (at least for a while anyway; never mind what happened in the beginning of the next game).

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Plus, he's Sean Bean in the movie, so... oh wait, never mind, Bean dies in literally everything. Barret Wallace for the win.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide8-cf3f6.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide8-cf3f6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160309","description":"

King Of All Cosmos (Katamari Damamcy) Vs. Octodad (Octodad: Dadliest Catch)

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You'd think the King Of All Cosmos would win this one without working up much of a sweat -- being the ultimate god of all creation and maker of everything and all that -- but that's not how it would actually go down.

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We know the King has some curious behaviors and dislikes. I'm picturing Ocotdad's loving tentacle suckers wrapping around the King and he'd immediately yield while screaming something like, "icky, icky, icky!". He'd then blame his loss on his son.

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But how would Octodad get through the gauntlet of the universe to even start the fight? He can't even walk through the kitchen without destroying everything in his path or getting stuck to every single object!

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Octodad would have a terrible time just getting across the road to fight the King Of All Cosmos, but something tells me his horribly treated son, the prince, and all those nephews and cousins would probably roll up everything to help out the secret octopus dad.

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You reap what you sow Mr. Cosmos, and you've sown some serious ill will with your family...

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide7-3a75c.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide7-3a75c.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160307","description":"

Kratos 1 (God Of War) Vs. Kratos 2 (Tales Of Symphonia)

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Who deserves the name more -- a spiky-haired anime dude with a sword, or the bulging muscled, rage-filled man who kills gods left and right?

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Both have a shameful past and try protecting their families to varying degrees of success. Kratos 1 has the upper hand in the pure strength department, but Kratos 2 is a couple of thousand years old, and he's learned some tricks along the way in all that time.

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We also have to consider this: Are we talking sleek, height-of-his-power Kratos 1 from earlier in the series or is this hipster neckbeard Kratos shackled with a little kid the whole game (where they are totally NOT copying The Last Of Us)?

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Eh, you know what, either way, I feel that while Kratos 2 is rooting around in his menu screen trying to select Demon Fang, Kratos 1 would have probably already torn him apart with the Blades of Chaos and then completed a couple of threesome sex mini-games.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide6-23d9e.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide6-23d9e.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160303","description":"

Booker DeWitt (Bioshock Infinite) Vs. Handsome Jack (Borderlands 2)  

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Oh, boy (or in this case, oh, girl), you really don't want either of these guys to be your dad! Both did some pretty heinous stuff to their respective daughters, and neither can really claim the moral high ground in any way.

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Handsome Jack really only imprisoned and sacrificed his daughter the one time, though, while Booker DeWitt just keeps. on. doing. it. in. every. single. reality. Elizabeth gets him back though, killing him off in universe after universe.

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In a knock down, drag out fight, who would come out ahead? It's a tough one -- Booker can swap between realities to get the upper hand and find a universe where he has the advantage. But Handsome Jack does have a whole lot of firepower on his side, from the entirety of Hyperion Corporation to potentially controlling the world-destroying Warrior after opening the vault.

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If Jack gets his pet Warrior, the win goes to him (unless Songbird constantly shows up to thwart the Warrior), otherwise I see the grim-faced DeWitt coming out the victor and then probably learning some other devastating truth about his past to make him even more hard boiled than before.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide5-b2888.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide5-b2888.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160299","description":"

James (Fallout 3) Vs. The Sole Survivor (Fallout 4)

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These are both some seriously lazy dads with a "Meh when I get to it" approach to parenting. Apparently, the post-nuclear war U.S. wasteland does not spawn good fathers.

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Liam Neeson might have a special set of skills for finding wayward children, but James sure didn't. Meanwhile, the Sole Survivor keeps having to go on just one more fetch quest before he can really start looking for Shawn...

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James has a whole lot of scientific equipment at his disposal, not to mention the security guards from Rivet City. But then again, the Sole Survivor is decked out in full power armor and probably has a legendary minigun with the wounding property or a 16 mini nuke MIRV launcher, so I'm gonna give the win to Fallout 4's awful dad.

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To be totally honest, I feel like rather than fighting, they'd both team up to go do a bunch of random quests instead before devoting their monthly 5 minutes to searching for their children.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide4-974ef.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide4-974ef.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160297","description":"

Hojo (Final Fantasy 7) Vs. Henry Lawson (Mass Effect)

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Both of these sci-fi mad scientists spawned some high quality genetic experiments who managed to break free and make their own mark on the universe. Neither is much of a fighter on their own or without any injected upgrades; Hojo is your typical lab coat and Henry's an intergalactic business man.

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Instead, the question becomes: "Could they get their offspring to help them, or would their kids try to help the other to kill their own evil parent? In both franchises, these kids end up turning on their fathers.

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You can't discount the Sephiroth effect here – just how effective would he be against Commander Shepherd's team? That sword made short work of the Midgar Zolom, but would he fall against laser fire and psychic powers?

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Seriously though... Miranda Lawson's form-fitting outfit. I think that's a major KO right there, no matter who the enemy ends up being. Sorry Sephiroth, but you can use all the earth-destroying black materia that you want, and I still think Lawson and the crew of the Normady are going to come out on top.

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In the end, I see both of these dads ending up six feet under courtesy of their own children.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide3-c333f.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide3-c333f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160296","description":"

Joel (The Last Of Us) Vs. Lee (The Walking Dead)

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Good lord, look at the sad eyes both of these post-apocalyptic survivors have! They'd do just about anything to protect their surrogate daughters, and its the pain of the past that drives them forward.

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My first instinct is to say "Joel wins, sorry Lee" and move on -- Joel is a stealthy killing machine in The Last Of Us!

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But first, let's consider a few things. Lee's a big guy, and while he's reluctant to engage in violence, he's been known to do so to devastating effect. He's not afraid to teach a little girl to kill, and even the impending doom of becoming a zombie won't stop him!

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I think we're going to have to boil this one down to which choices you made in Telltale's Walking Dead. Hard-as-nails Lee who makes Clementine put him down would probably come out the victor. Sappy Lee who decides to go zombie rather than teach a tough lesson definitely loses to Joel.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide2-790f3.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide2-790f3.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160292","description":"

Michael De Santa (Grand Theft Auto V) Vs. Ethan Mars (Heavy Rain)

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It's the bad dad world cup up in here!

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Michael De Santa is the definition of the uncaring white trash dad (oh, woe is me, I'm rich and bored in suburbia and I hate my kids!) while Ethan's life has gone down the toilet since his son Jason died because of his inattentiveness. 

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Despite that early-game apathy, both go to extreme, absurd lengths to protect their kids.

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Michael assaults a whole boat filled to the brim with pimps and drug dealers to keep his daughter from being in an impromptu porno shoot, while Ethan goes through some serious Saw levels of torture to find his other missing son, Shaun.

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Michael's got the street smarts and gun-fu on his side, of that there's no doubt, but Ethan is the bumbling guy who just won't die, no matter how hard you try to kill him. 

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Without Michael's full GTA 5 crew to back him up, I'm going to call this one a draw -- they'd end up killing each other or getting themselves thrown in the clink via misadventure.

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide1-f2d10.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/s/l/i/slide1-f2d10.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160290","description":"

Bowser (Super Mario) Vs. Dr. Light (Mega Man)

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It was never really clear to me if Bowser was the progenitor of all the koopas and goombas or just the biggest, baddest one around.

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But for our purposes, we're going to assume he's somehow sired the whole lot of 'em (probably with that big tease Princess Peach, who keeps getting "kidnapped" and showing up in Bowser's castle all the time to be "rescued" by a clueless Mario).

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So with that out of the way, which would win: an army of koopa troopas or an army of robots? Dr. Light never seems to make as devastatingly powerful robots as his nemesis, Dr. Wily, but Mega Man and his cohorts always manage to upgrade themselves with screen-clearing weaponry because of a little help from dad (or dad's digital ghost, as the case may occasionally be).

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On the other hand, it seems like koopa troopas and goombas can pretty much only die if you jump right on their heads (or you run at them at full speed after having recently eaten some magic mushrooms), so that superior fire power might not be helpful.

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This one's a tough call, but I think with his endless minions piloting airships and massive, maze-like castles the robotic crew would have to fight through, eventually, Bowser would come out on top and tear Dr. Light to shreds. 

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Now I have visions in my head of Dr. Wily and Dr. Robotnik teaming up with Bowser to create an army of robotic koopa troopas... 

"},{"image":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/o/v/cover11-de27e.jpg","thumb":"https://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/o/v/cover11-de27e.jpg","type":"slide","id":"160315","description":"

We've already looked at the best and worst video game dads -- and there's plenty to pick from in the latter category. And of course, daddy issues are at the heart of more than a few quests to save (or destroy) the world. In short, there's a disturbing number of fathers in the gamingverse who have genetically created monstrosities and made the world an (un)safer place.

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With all these hero dads trying to save their kids and villain dads who let their offspring die horrible deaths, the question has to be asked: Which dad would win in a fight?

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Every eight year old out there thinks his or her dad can beat up YOUR dad, and today, we're going to unleash our inner adolescence to pit all the gaming papas against one another in a battle to the death!

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WARNING: There are some spoilers throughout (some of these dads aren't revealed as such until the end of their respective games), and we assume you know how each of these games concluded. Proceed at your own risk!

"}]]]>
10 Things Filmmakers Can Learn from Video Game Cut Scenes https://www.gameskinny.com/3mecb/10-things-filmmakers-can-learn-from-video-game-cut-scenes https://www.gameskinny.com/3mecb/10-things-filmmakers-can-learn-from-video-game-cut-scenes Fri, 07 Apr 2017 08:00:02 -0400 Nick Lee

The art of cinema and the world of video games no longer stand as completely different mediums when it comes to expression of complex and simplistic ideas. There are lessons in film that have transferred over to cut scenes, breaks in the action of a game where a movie moment fills in or progresses the details of a story.

Cut scenes can occur at the beginning, middle, or near the end of a game and by my estimation a bad scene can signal a good time for a snack or a bathroom break for gamers. For directors of the next great cinematic moment, take some cues from these games who left a long lasting impact on gamers everywhere.

Fallout and the Creation of Mantra

Fans of the acclaimed Fallout series will recognize the mantra of the series that "War, war never changes." There's been countless films about war itself, the effects of killing on the human psyche and dystopian futures, but none can capture the art of the rise and fall of humanity quite like Bethesda. Fallout focuses on a world that was threatened by nuclear war during the 1950's Cold War, but used nuclear energy for the advancement of mankind. This of course was all pushed to the edge as the ideals of over consumption and greed plagued the world.

Movie makers can often have characters repeat signature phrases, and trilogies can often call back to similar phrases. In the context of Fallout, the phrase is used to signal that regardless of the situation in any of the games in the series, one thing remains. What remains is the perils, strife, evils and selfishness that got mankind to the place it is in. Greater commentary on the dangerous nature of these qualities would do well as a warning in movies for us all to heed.

Portal and How to Roll Credits

If you've wandered into any Marvel movie in the past several years you'll know that staying until the credits are completely over is now required. We all collectively know now that just because the credits begin to roll, doesn't mean it's actually over. Other movies have picked up this trend and are probably going to have us in movie theaters for just a few minutes more for the rest of our lives.

A great way filmmakers can take advantage of this captive audience time is to make them smile. Portal is a game where the player is constantly at odds with an evil robot mainframe named GlaDos (Who is reminiscent of Hal 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey.) The tone of the game is quite the contrary to this ending scene and performs a 180 in one of the most masterful ways in video games. A chance to do this might only come in more fantastical movies, but taking this to the big screen could be just as iconic; and hopefully catchy.

Kotor II: The Sith Lords Powerful Writing

Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords have arguably some of the best writing in video game history. The game sets up a world in which people begin to question the values of both the Jedi and of the Sith. Star Wars movies have yet to reach a critical, provoking moment anywhere near this and Rouge One: A Star Wars Story only slightly came close in their depiction of what it means to rebel. Movies, not just Star Wars, can take cues from this cut scene as it incorporates so many elements all at once. In this one scene the characters perceived objective comes crumbling down as the Jedi decides your fate like a kangaroo court.

Making the natural order, or those in authority actually turn out to be blinded by their own fears or misunderstandings is a lesson that can't be stressed enough. Just because an authority has done more good than harm does not make them infallible. Furthermore, Star Wars heading in a direction like this could take the idea that the force is parallel to religion and could take on the arguments we face here on Earth all the time.

Last of Us and Perfect Juxtaposition

The Last of Us provides some of the best storytelling in video games and does something movies can get right, but might often forget when it comes to stories about two rogues on a mission. Rather than just create bland pairings between our two antagonists storytellers should follow the great work of this game in character pairs. In this cut scene we see the culmination of working together as main characters Joel and Ellie get into an argument over Ellie's future.

Those who make it to the end of the game will see the power of a relationship that develops over a short period of time. Last of Us does an amazing job of pairing the two through a number of ways. We see that Joel is the classic older, yet crotchety, guy who is experienced enough to survive tough spots. Meanwhile, Ellie is a young girl with some experience of her own, but is still discovering herself and what makes her so special.

Further, we see both characters face their fears and how those can get the best of them. For a game with scenes as good as this one it was tough to choose just one, but playing the game felt more like peeking into real lives than spectating a movie, so definitely take notes on this one.

Mass Effect and Culmination of Plans

For those who have played through the story arch combined with dynamic relationships that resulted in Mass Effect 3, you'll undoubtedly recognize this cut scene as the battle for Earth. The Battle, while a cool way to think of doing space battles for sci-fi movies speaks more to the art of culmination. Move goers and gamers definitely have something in common when it comes to having to make us care about different groups or people in what we are watching.

The battle scene here was the work of three game installments and countless devotion to the hours of gameplay, but this can be transferred over to movies as well. Future films will do well to take note that you don't actually have to end every sci-fi or war type film with a final battle that solves every issue. Sometimes leaving cliffhangers and interesting threads for a future movie will bring fans along for a ride. By now we know that the bigger the blockbuster, the more likely there is to be a sequel or remake so why not let us have those moments of wonder as to where you'll take us next?

Homeworld and Haunting Introductions

Players of the Homeworld series will remember this iconic intro scene as one of the few that stays with you throughout all video game history. Movies and games have long since started introductions to desolate wastelands or futuristic movies with narration, but Homeworld moves the viewer to feel as if this was more real than sci-fi. When presenting narration, filmmakers can take heed from the design of Homeworld's intro by noting the voice over, the choice of music and sound level throughout and overall tone for this intro.

This is how sci-fi is truly meant to start out, similar to the mention of 2001: A Space Odyssey, Homeworld utilizes spaces of silence and calming voices to create an eerie feeling. With a rise in space type movies lately, hopefully lessons from this game will be taken into consideration.

Final Fantasy VII and Character Development

In any story making your characters grow in some way or learn a lesson is a given. Whether it be done in a cheesy 80's way, or by having them be altered in a way they won't even understand yet, it has to be done. Final Fantasy is a series that has become iconic if for the cut scenes alone. One of the arguably greatest character interaction takes place in Final Fantasy VII, Cloud and Zack in the seventh installment of the series.

Going a step further, the scene ties together the idea that Zack's memories are fading as the scene goes on due to the fact that he is dying while also trying his best to hold on to life. There are a litany of lessons in the Square Enix made cut scenes, but the most important is to be willing to build a character up even if he is going to die. Increasing movie tie ins like Marvel's have a Jenga tower of characters that don't ever seem to go anywhere because we have no reason to believe they'd die.

Letting a character grow on the audience and then pulling them out of the fray is a powerful move that series like Game of Thrones or The Walking Dead have done so well and continue to garner praise for it. A bonus lesson for this comes in the phrase if you love someone let it go, but in film if you love a character it's okay to let them die

Batman: Arkham Knight and Winning

Few movies can do to an audience what the ending to Batman: Arkham Knight easily provided. From seamless transition between gameplay and cut scenes to the Batman overcoming all odds once again, this game carries on where future Batman movies might not. Throughout the game there are flashes of the Joker, Batman's eternal enemy, shows up and the fear that Batman is becoming just like him plays on his psyche until the very end.

The scenes above are the ending cinematic and game play, but speak to a tip that movies can pick up on. The relationship between the movies hero and villain has to be one that goes both ways to truly make an impact. In Batman: Arkham Knight it isn't just Joker's hate for Batman, but it's their mutual animosity towards the other that fosters it further.

Great villains need more than a simple motif of wanting to conquer or destroy the world, they need a reason to keep fighting their enemy and even show their own fears to make them more real. So when a hero finally overcomes a well polished antagonist, it leads us to the next lesson.

Master Chief and Bad Ass Delivery

The lesson here is to always allow your extreme, over the top and badass characters be just that. Even when they have times that show emotion or remorse for their situation, letting them have fun and just live up to their abilities can't be overstated unless it's beyond the possibilities their universe sets on them. Out of the many cut scenes of the Halo series, this one has got to be the most exemplary of what it means to be the hero -- "Return the Sender" from Halo 2.

Master Chief, the iconic suited hero of the series is always the hero. Regardless of focus he is used as the best asset of the UNSC Naval Special Warfare Command. A prime example of the respect that should be shown for characters like this occurs in Halo 4 as the main antagonist transforms from calling Master Chief "human" to "warrior" by the end of the game. So when you have a character whose earned their scars and could reasonably be the one-man army, it's okay to let them sometimes.

Kingdom Hearts and Musicality

Square Enix knows how to tell a story, but they certainly perfected the music of this one. The Kingdom Hearts series follows young hero Sora as he tries to make it back home to his friends with the help of iconic Disney characters like Donald Duck and Goofy. The focus filmmakers can take are the uses of theme music as a sense of tying the story together. The series uses an instrumental song called Dearly Beloved from the beginning and in the end screen, but the final scene showing Sora nearly reunited with his friend utilizes the recurring intro song titled "Simple and Clean."

The theme of the series, most recognized in numerous trailers, constantly reminds players of the game. It's a masterful job of bringing back the theme with different reprises and remixes that make it iconic in video game history. When making a film, certain theme songs will forever be associated with a character or film. One that does this as a means of tying together the film with a great piece of music is Inception that focuses on the world of dreams in relation to effects on reality, just like Kingdom Hearts. Who knows, maybe Sora's had a totem the whole time.

Honorable Mentions

uncharted 3, nathan, drake, nate

There's just too many great cut scenes in video games not to mention these, so here's a quick list of additional reading for study

Uncharted

The Uncharted series is known for taking its' inspiration from the big screen for cut scenes, so what lesson could you possibly learn from them? Well, what the series does better than any other is instill a James Bond sense of danger in scenarios that make sense for the character. Nathan Drake, the protagonist, doesn't ever stray from the idea that he wants one last ride or adventure then he's hanging it all up. The fourth installment does the best job in recapturing that childlike adventure he has by literally flashing back to his childhood. Movie characters need that passion about whatever it is their doing, and the audience will enjoy finding the little quirks they may identify with.

Pac-Man

There's nothing like being first, and being original is harder these days than ever. The tip to be taken from the legend of gaming is that sometimes silent little moments can progress the story in ways that might seem silly but ultimately get their point across.

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Overall, video games can teach the film industry a lot with character development and the use of literary techniques as they are inspired by the art of film itself. The greatest films of all time incorporate different aspects like those listed above, but don't have to use all at the same time to work either. Each above can be used in its own unique ways to tie together a story with real feeling and emotions behind it.

Characters exist on screen from planning and writing, but they will stay there if they aren't given real breath and emotion that the audience can connect with. Icons don't become that way by accident, and getting back to the simple lessons of storytelling can achieve that all over again.

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JRPGs Aren't In Decline... It's Just Square Enix's Offerings That Are https://www.gameskinny.com/g0j1j/jrpgs-arent-in-decline-its-just-square-enixs-offerings-that-are https://www.gameskinny.com/g0j1j/jrpgs-arent-in-decline-its-just-square-enixs-offerings-that-are Tue, 28 Feb 2017 08:00:01 -0500 Kris Cornelisse (Delfeir)

The JRPG genre rose to prominence almost entirely off the backs of two notable game development companies; Squaresoft and Enix. Responsible for bringing us the Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest series respectively, a huge amount of the most notable RPGs (and a number of less notable or unlocalized games besides) were created or published by these two developers.

Prior to the release of the PlayStation, you would be hard pressed to find a JRPG released in English-speaking territories that didn’t brandish either the Squaresoft or Enix logos. There are exceptions of course, notably on Sega systems -- I’d be loathe to ignore Phantasy Star or the Shining series -- but many would be unlikely to name those at first if asked for a JRPG series title.

More companies would start to join in the JRPG market throughout the PlayStation era, such as Konami or Monolith Soft, and the market quickly saw a boom of new titles that would continue well into the late PS2 era. But all throughout, many walked in the shadow of these two giants, or owed their continued existence to Squaresoft publishing for them. Every Suikoden or Xenosaga that was released would still never be held to the general pedestal that games such as Final Fantasy VII or Chrono Trigger stood upon.

Then, in 2003, the unthinkable happened: Squaresoft and Enix joined forces, merging into Square Enix and remaining as such to the present day.

One would think such a monumental occasion would change the landscape of JRPGs forever, and Square Enix would catapult themselves even higher to the top echelons of developers unopposed.

Did that happen? Nope. Not even close.

If anything, the vast majority of offerings in the JRPG genre since then by the company have been... well, questionable. In fact, I’d argue that since the merger, there have been almost zero titles from them to match their respective high points while separate. There was even a stretch of time where the vast majority of games from Square Enix weren’t JRPGs, almost as if they’d abandoned the genre entirely.

Does that mean that the JRPG has since died out, then? Nope. Not even close.

Despite some inklings that JRPGs are lacking in innovation or have declined in quality, the genre continues to see numerous excellent titles released from a range of companies.

Innovations and developments continue to be made, yet the core of the genre remains present, and many classic elements are still revisited in new and interesting ways. Thanks to the increased size of the gaming market in recent generations, more and more games of all genres are being made by companies new and old -- and JRPGs are no exception.

No, dear readers, it is not the JRPG that has fallen into disarray -- it is merely Square Enix’s offerings to the genre that are in serious need of improvement. Let’s dive deeper.

Classical History

Since Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest are the classic series most are acquainted with, we’ll start with those. For those familiar with the respective series, I offer a question: Which of the numbered games in those series was your favorite?

(Yes, Final Fantasy Tactics and Dragon Quest Monsters were great, but humour me here and pick a number.)

Were I to survey or inquire the answers to that question, I think you’ll find that the vast majority of people offering favorite Final Fantasy titles will say somewhere between VI and IX, with occasional outliers between IV and X. Dragon Quest is most likely to be a toss up between V and VIII, though any between III and VIII could also be selected. Does this sound about right?

How many of these particular titles were released prior to the merger of Squaresoft and Enix, though? Excluding Dragon Quest VIII, all of them.

The first numbered non-MMORPG Final Fantasy game to be released under the merged banner was XII. While reasonably well received, it had a lot of mixed opinions on it, and it’s rare to find people who would hands-down consider it their favorite. Since then, we had XIII and its sequels, and while there are occasional defenders or proponents of parts of those games, the overall opinion is that they were a massive misstep.

Not convinced? How about XIV, also an MMO? Well, on release, the game was universally panned and responses were massively negative, so much so that Square Enix had to bring down the game and rebuild it entirely from the ground up with a new team. A Realm Reborn turned out to be quite good, but we cannot ignore that initial disaster; Square Enix is quite possibly the only company in gaming history to salvage a game like that, and most others would simply consider the expenditure too great and cut their investment right there.

Last chance, then... FFXV? Well... I could write many, many things about FFXV, and there’d be plenty of negatives in there to talk about. There’s decent gameplay, but the story is an utter mess and the open world is graphically pretty but largely devoid of things to do. It’s a flawed and unfinished game, regardless of whatever positives you might take away from it.

Now for Dragon Quest, almost all of which were developed prior to the merger. The first to be released under the Square Enix banner was Dragon Quest VIII, which would be the best offering but for one catch: it was actually developed by Level 5, rather than a studio within Square Enix.

Lest we think that it’s just their flagship RPG series effected, let’s try another example: Star Ocean, created by Tri-Ace and Enix before transferring to Square Enix. With five major games in the series, it’s widely regarded that the first three are considerably stronger than the latest offerings. Guess what? Star Ocean 3: Till the End of Time was released shortly before the merger. Compare most of the RPG series released by Square Enix and similar trends will be evident.

What about Kingdom Hearts, I hear some people asking? That is something I will concede as breaking the trend, but only in part. The first game was released before the merger, but Kingdom Hearts 2 was some time after, and it was received quite strongly.

But as a whole, I would say that the series is still hardly an exception to Square Enix’s declining offerings to the JRPG genre. While it does have good games, it’s also had some pretty weak ones as well. In addition, it seems like the company is doing everything in their power to hold off releasing Kingdom Hearts 3, with countless remasters adding tiny little details and padding out anything they can.

People bought PS3s under the assumption that it would be on it, after all...

So what happened? Well, if anything, the merger saw Square Enix become more of a publisher than an in-house developer. A massive number of games from a large number of companies worldwide are published under the Square Enix banner. This initially focused more on JRPGs, but has grown to include many varied genres and notable series, including Tomb Raider, Just Cause and Deus Ex.

An epic quest in the palm of your hand

If there was a decline in the number and quality of JRPGs available, it would probably fall within the previous console generation. Many are quick to highlight the number of quality RPGs available for the PS2 -- and earlier consoles -- but you’d be reaching a little further to list an equivalent number of solid PS3 or Xbox 360 titles.

But that’s not to say that they weren’t there; rather, they were to be found on handheld gaming systems. With the rising costs of quality game development, many smaller developers turned to the DS or PSP, as well as their successors, to develop their RPGs.

Square Enix was no stranger to this trend as well. Two of their most successful JRPGs released since their merger -- The World Ends With You, and Bravely Default -- were released on handheld systems. Dragon Quest made the switch to DS with the release of IX, and the upcoming DQXI is slated to arrive on 3DS and PS4.

Those who considered there to be a dearth of quality JRPGs were probably focused more on home consoles, but the genre has been alive and well in a portable form throughout.

Admittedly, many larger JRPG series fell dormant during this time period from other companies as well. While there was a spinoff Suikoden game on DS, no numbered title has been released since V on the PS2; the same can be said of Breath of Fire.

Which leads into the next point: many JRPG series are actually seeing new titles and rebirth on smartphones. Unfortunately, many of these are little more than name drops in order to attract a quick dollar, even by notable companies -- anyone who says Breath of Fire VI is worthy of that number is, I’d argue, completely delusional.

Failing that, they often are freemium Gachapon games with minimal gameplay and little more than a theme connected to the series in order to lure fans. Even Nintendo has started to fall into this trend; Fire Emblem Heroes fits this bill to a tee, though in its defence, it is of considerably higher quality and has stronger gameplay than many other alternatives.

However, despite my cynicism and the existence of some blatant cash grabs, there are admittedly more and more JRPGs being developed for smartphones that are actually worthy of attention. Are they quality enough to compare to games on other systems? Your mileage will probably vary on that, but there are certainly some that are worthy of attention, such as the recently released Dandy Dungeon.

Square Enix has been quick to jump onto this mobile bandwagon, too. The number of freemium titles they have is quite frankly excessive, but there are a whole slew of their titles available on smartphones that range from ports of classic Final Fantasy games to wholly original titles or remakes. They’re often extremely pricey compared to the wealth of cheap competitors on systems, but a handful of them are arguably quality enough to justify a purchase.

The point is that the JRPG is (and has always been) alive and well on handhelds and mobile, even if not on home consoles. But it’s not as though the consoles have been bereft of quality titles, either.

Square Enix aren’t the only JRPG developers

With all the money and attention that Square Enix receives, it’s understandable that their projects are the ones in the limelight -- that’s AAA gaming in a nutshell. They are effectively the JRPG developing and publishing equivalent of Electronic Arts or Activision Blizzard for first-person shooters.

But a big budget and high profile isn’t necessary for making quality games, as the growing indie scene can rightfully attest to. It’s not uncommon for some great JRPGs to emerge on PC from relatively unheard of developers; Zeboyd Games, the makers of Cthulhu Saves the World, are currently close to release on Cosmic Star Heroine, which is a love letter to the classic Phantasy Star games.

Failing that, there is a thriving scene of developers utilising RPG Maker or other engines to craft JRPGs by the droves, many of which are quite innovative or put interesting spins on classic concepts. Consider Undertale, or any of the games like it.

It’s not just indie companies making JRPGs, either. Square Enix may have the limelight, but perhaps you’ve heard of a series called The Legend of Heroes? My love for Trails of Cold Steel is well documented, but Nihon Falcom has been producing quality RPGs of all kinds for as long as Squaresoft was. Thanks to the hard work of companies like XSEED, these series are finally starting to see more of a resurgence in the West or on home consoles.

You can also look to the absolutely staggering number of games that are localised and published by Nippon Ichi to find a number of JRPGs that you might have otherwise overlooked. Seriously, there’s a lot, coming from a number of development companies such as Gust or Compile Heart.

There are other high-profile JRPG developers that have been constantly working on their craft, too. Bandai Namco and their Tales franchise are usually the ones held up in comparison to Square Enix’s offerings, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t bring up the work of Atlus during all of this. Anyone who stated that JRPGs were a dying breed needed only to look at the Persona and Shin Megami Tensei games to know that wasn’t the case.

Even Mistwalker Studios, formed by ex-Squaresoft veteran Hironobu Sakaguchi -- the creator of Final Fantasy -- has been going strong. Lost Odyssey and The Last Story were both very good games, though due to their exclusivity to certain consoles their audience has regrettably been smaller than deserved. Sakaguchi-san is hardly the only developer to have left Square Enix and gone on to continue making great RPGs outside of their banner.

Bored of the main quest? Start looking for side quests

The gaming landscape is only growing larger every day, with a broad library of titles available to explore across all sorts of platforms. Regardless of platform or where you look, however, the JRPG continues to thrive and expand. Whether nostalgia-laden throwbacks or cliched affairs to innovative twists on plots and mechanics, they’re there in force.

But just like for other genres, sometimes you need to look past the AAA developers of Square Enix to see it.

Think of it like the grand RPG tradition: sometimes you need to go off the beaten track and explore away from the main quest in order to find the truly valuable treasure. It’s the same in finding games to play. You might find something good to play amongst Square Enix’s offerings -- and there are some good titles from recent years, don’t get me wrong -- but the hidden gems can only be found by looking around, asking questions, and delving into the side quests of other developers in order to find something you truly love but rarely hear about.

Give it a shot. Forget the Final Fantasy series. Instead, go play Ys! Swap Dragon Quest VIII out of your 3DS in favour of Shin Megami Tensei IV: Apocalypse! Forget I Am Setsuna and try Trillion! Live a little, explore, and expand your horizons. Who knows, you might surprise yourself with what you find.

It’s not that unheard of for the main quest to be pretty bad in comparison to the side quests, anyway. Right, Final Fantasy XV?

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New Screenhots of Final Fantasy VII's Remake Show Off First Boss Fight https://www.gameskinny.com/y7ya6/new-screenhots-of-final-fantasy-viis-remake-show-off-first-boss-fight https://www.gameskinny.com/y7ya6/new-screenhots-of-final-fantasy-viis-remake-show-off-first-boss-fight Sat, 18 Feb 2017 15:15:54 -0500 Justin Michael

Being the first Final Fantasy game that I played, Final Fantasy VII  had a lot of memorable moments for me. One of those moments was fighting the giant tank scorpion guarding the Sector 1 Mako Reactor. That looked something like this, for perspective:

Not the most impressive sight given the technology of today, but this was some great stuff for the time. So, when game director Tetsuya Nomura released the following image of the boss fight at Magic Monaco 2017, I'm sure that a lot of people got excited:

It's a lot to take in initially, but this simple picture shows us a lot about what we can expect from the remake of Final Fantasy VII. The lighting and visual effects for the fight are spectacular, the battleground is heavily detailed, and the combat system looks like it got quite the facelift -- if not a massive overhaul. It also looks like Magic is being tracked differently from Materia, which is something I'd like to know more about.

Sadly, this picture and one more were all that were offered up, even though Nomura wanted to show off more in the form of a video of the game. However, he was talked out of it by other members of the development team. 

Hopefully, we'll know more in the near future for this much-anticipated remake of one of the most iconic PlayStation games in the world. The Final Fantasy VII Remake is in development to be released on the PlayStation 4. 

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The Seven Best Armor Sets in the Final Fantasy Universe https://www.gameskinny.com/9t17z/the-seven-best-armor-sets-in-the-final-fantasy-universe https://www.gameskinny.com/9t17z/the-seven-best-armor-sets-in-the-final-fantasy-universe Thu, 09 Feb 2017 08:00:01 -0500 Michael Llewellyn

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The Ribbon/Super Ribbon
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While it doesn't look like much as a line of defence The Ribbon is a long standing accessory and piece of armor in the Final Fantasy series, and is one of if not the most reliable and powerful defensive items in the entire series.

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It usually protects the characters against all status effects with the exception of death related status effects such Instant Death or Doom, or in some cases slow and stop as seen in Final Fantasy VII.

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The Super Ribbon is an upgraded version of The Ribbon and similarly protects against all status effects and in some games prevents Instant Death.

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The Ribbon has also made it on to the Kingdom Hearts series and provides 20% elemental resistance which can be upgraded to 25% with The Grand Ribbon in Kingdom Hearts 2.

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What is your favourite Final Fantasy armor set? Do you disagree with any of the picks here? Let us know in the comments below!

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The Genji Armor
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Appearing in almost every Final Fantasy game the Genji armor is almost always the most powerful equipment set you can find. It is rare and is usually either stolen from or dropped after defeating a recurring boss/character known as Gilgamesh, a travelling samurai/swordsman who is searching for the ultimate weapon known as Excalibur.

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A good example of the Genji's power can be seen Final Fantasy VII: Crisis Core with the armor, which when equipped sets the HP limit to 99,999 and grants auto-Endure and Regen. The Genji shield is incredibly powerful in this game too because it absorbs all elemental attacks and makes Zack immune to all status effects.

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Gilgamesh is set to return in some Final Fantasy XV DLC in the near future so it's very possible that he will bring along the Genji Armor he is famed for carrying.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/z/i/e/ziedrich-6129b.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/z/i/e/ziedrich-6129b.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149930","description":"
The Ziedrich Armor
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The Zeidrich Armor is one of the most powerful in the series providing high stat boosts and protection from all elemental attacks. 

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Next to the Mystile Armour it is the most powerful in Final Fantasy VII with massive defense stats in both magic and physical attributes. Combined with ability to half all elemental attacks it is an extremely effective line of defence only rivalled by the Mystile.

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It has appeared in Final Fantasy X as Atlas which is a shield for Rikku that is obtained when the dominant set up is Break HP Limit. In a more recent appearance it is the best shield for Noctis and Gladiolus and is one of the rare legendary weapons in Final Fantasy XV.

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The Grand Armor
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 The metallic Grand Armor is one of the best in the series although it hasn't been seen a lot in many of the mainline titles it has featured in spinoffs like Final Fantasy: Explorers and Final Fantasy: Dissidia.

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In Final Fantasy XII it is the strongest heavy armor in the game and requires quite a bit of effort to obtain being an extremely rare drop.

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The armor is described as "the greatest armor" and can only be worn by Steiner and Freya in Final Fantasy IX. It can also be worn by heavy armor wearing classes like the dragoon, knight and samurai in Final Fantasy Tactics: War Of The Lions.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/r/y/crystal-b3533.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/c/r/y/crystal-b3533.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149944","description":"
The Crystal Armor
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The Crystal Armor is one of the stronger equipment sets in the Final Fantasy universe and one of the most recognisable but often falling short of being the best when being surpassed by more rare items found later on in the game. Although it is lead protagonist Cecils most powerful armor even surpassing the Dragon Knight Armor in Final Fantasy IV.

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The armor and other defensive items are seen throughout the series but the full range of Crystal equipment has been seen with the appearance of the Crystal sword too.

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The Crystal bangles seen in Final Fantasy X-2 are the strongest in the game for its positive effects on a character's status such as large boosts to HP and MP.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/r/a/dragon-09ce0.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/d/r/a/dragon-09ce0.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149955","description":"
Dragon/Dragoon Armor
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Another very recognisable equipment class in the Final Fantasy universe it is often associated with the Dragon Knight class and the similar more powerful Dragoons.

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The Dragon sets are a rare item that can't purchased in town shops and usually has comparable defense stats to items like the Genji Armor.

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Visually the Dragon equipment is synonymous with Final Fantasy IV because of one the characters in the game and fan favorite the Dragoon called Kain Highwind and is easily one of the more recognisable character classes in the game. The Dragoon class aesthetics and its equipment make a return in Final Fantasy XV with the character Aranea highwind.

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The Dragon Knight armor is one of the most powerful in the Final Fantasy IV second only to the Cecils Crystal armor.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/y/s/mystile-dcfdb.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/m/y/s/mystile-dcfdb.jpg","type":"slide","id":"150074","description":"
The Mystile Armor
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They Mystile armor has only featured in one mainline Final Fantasy title and that was Final Fantasy VII, although it did appear again in Final Fantasy: Crisis Core and the Final Fantasy: Dissidia series.

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The Mystile armor has gained quite a following with Final Fantasy VII fans not only because it's one of the strongest in the game next to the Ziedrich armor, but because of its useful status effects, high evasion rate, increased accuracy and when combined with Deathblow, the Curse Ring and other useful items and it allows for Materia combinations like Final Attack and Phoenix, so it becomes very versatile when compared to the Ziedrich which has no Materia slots -- especially when going up against the Ultimate Weapon bosses.

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The Mystile is a very powerful armor that would have been featured higher on the list if it was featured in more than just one mainline title.

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With the recent controversy surrounding Square-Enix's now delayed "Magitek Exosuit" DLC for Final Fantasy XV with its more than passing resemblance to The Power Rangers. The developers stated that after getting contacted by studios behind the new Power Rangers film, they are now having to go back to the drawing board and redesign their look in order to avoid potential problems further on.

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While every mainline Final Fantasy title usually has its own unique story and setting one of the things that fans have come to love are the connections and subtle references to previous games like characters names, items, Chocobos, Moogles and equipment sets that have become a staple for the series.

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Although you very rarely see your characters physical appearance change like a western RPG when equipping new items and accessories, the equipment sets names and information in the series have so many recognisable qualities that long time fans will be very familiar with when they discover them through the course of their adventures.

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While we patiently wait for the new Magitek Exosuits here I am listing what I have found to be the most useful, powerful and defensive armor and equipment sets the Final Fantasy universe.

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These Are the Cosplay Ideas for 2017! https://www.gameskinny.com/bwb3x/these-are-the-cosplay-ideas-for-2017 https://www.gameskinny.com/bwb3x/these-are-the-cosplay-ideas-for-2017 Wed, 01 Feb 2017 06:45:01 -0500 Stephanie Tang

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That's it!

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(Well kind of... you know Link will definitely be making an appearance at conventions around the globe, with the signature green tunic that we've all come to associate with him or with this latest blue iteration of him in upcoming Breath of the Wild that's set to release in March.)

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Have we missed anyone too criminally big to forget? Think these are entirely off the mark? Feel free to let us know!

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(image source: Now Loading)

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William - Nioh

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A new challenger appears??

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This definitely isn't a jump on the nostalgia train, but the playable demos out for upcoming PS4 game Nioh have gotten video game audiences pretty psyched for the full release (which is only days away!).

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Set in an alternate fantasy Japan's bloody Sengoku period and the chaos of warring states you play as William, a master-less samurai, who faces off against evil demons and humans alike. If this game proves as good as it promises to be, you can bet we're going to see this guy in upcoming photo shoots very, very soon. 

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(image source: Nerdable)

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Spider-Man

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This is probably made easier because Spider-Man is pretty much a given when it comes to the big comic conventions, and certainly doesn't mind popping up at video game-centric ones either... and why should he? After nearly 40 years of Spider-Man video games, he definitely deserves the place!

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Besides, what better way for webslingers to unite than in a conga line snaking around the building?

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(image source: Pinterest)

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Spider-Man 

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So Andrew Garfield's Amazing Spider-Man may have been the snarky Spider-Man of my cartoon-bingeing teenage years, but his days in the tight suit appear to be behind him. With Spider-Man: Homecoming coming out in theaters soon and Tom Holland already having taken a spin in the role with an appearance in Captain America: Civil War, Spidey is poised to give Deadpool a run for his money in 2017.

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(image source: CinemaBlend)

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Gladiolus - Final Fantasy XV

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Some may speculate that it's the abs that make or break a Gladiolus cosplay - and let's face it, Italian cosplayer Leon Chiro sure fits the bill. Definitely daunting, but not impossible for most, especially when you throw a little costume makeup into the mix.

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Besides, it's that sword that really makes an impression, isn't it? If you can manage that, it doesn't matter the build - you've got a pretty good thing going.

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(image source: Kotaku)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/f/x/ffxv-e1404283085217-80cc8.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/f/x/ffxv-e1404283085217-80cc8.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149391","description":"

Gladiolus - Final Fantasy XV

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All right, so there might be some wishful thinking involved including this one into the list... but not much! FFXV is big and everyone's playing it (okay, maybe I'm not, but that's more because I'm lazy and waiting for a PC release).

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It's taken a long time in coming, and has changed a hell of a lot along the way. Admit it, we're just happy it's here - never mind that it looks fantastic, and Square Enix have seriously ponied up to make sure that it all finally came to completion. 

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(image source: Attack of the Fanboy)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/1/s/w/1swd0w2-6be83.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/1/s/w/1swd0w2-6be83.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149408","description":"

Nebula - Guardians of the Galaxy

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While Nebula may not exactly a main character, Karen Gillan turned heads when she famously shaved her head to play the part, and she plays a damn good counterpoint to Zoe Saldana's feisty Gamora. 

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Here's hoping more talented cosplayers follow in Karin Olava's (pictured above) footsteps doing this girl justice in the upcoming year!

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(image source: Comic Book Movie)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/u/a/guardians-galaxy-wallpaper-roster-nebula-3840f.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/g/u/a/guardians-galaxy-wallpaper-roster-nebula-3840f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149406","description":"

Nebula - Guardians of the Galaxy

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Okay, so maybe the blue paint and skull cap won't be for everyone, but this ass-kicking alien chick is definitely in the cards for upcoming 2017.

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Sure there's the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 movie that's fast approaching theaters (with a baby Groot that's destined to melt your heart), but reports are popping up that Eidos Montreal (the developer behind Deus Ex: Human Revolution) is working on a Guardians of the Galaxy video game though it's as yet early in production.

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It'll be one of several comic book partnership video games between Marvel and Square Enix (the first of which is set to feature the Avengers).

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(image source: Screen Rant)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/a/q/u/aqua-khbbs-eyes-d3aqq1i-de1c3.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/a/q/u/aqua-khbbs-eyes-d3aqq1i-de1c3.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149378","description":"

Aqua - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue

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Poor Aqua may have been left in limbo for a lot longer than we'd have liked, but that hasn't stopped cosplayers from stepping into her shoes, and her badass costume to boot. 

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Since KH3 is peeking over the horizon and promises to be the biggest installment in the franchise ever with our first look at a grown-up Sora, it's not surprising that cosplayers are psyching themselves up for something truly epic and worth realizing in real life!

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(image source: DeviantArt)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/4/s/c/4scrmax1-c91a3.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/4/s/c/4scrmax1-c91a3.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149374","description":"

Aqua - Kingdom Hearts HD 2.8 Final Chapter Prologue

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Speaking of Square Enix, this collaboration with Disney is still going strong as fans cling to the coming of Kingdom Hearts III. 

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With the recent release of KH 2.8, die hard fans have new playable content to stem the tide for a little while, whereas new fans now have an easier opportunity to play through a number of the games (which have hopped across nearly every Sony console and handheld to date) without swapping platforms. 

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(image source: EB Games)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/2/b/0/2b0a77523414816c2fdbd4548f128c73f0a2f628-da0ab.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/2/b/0/2b0a77523414816c2fdbd4548f128c73f0a2f628-da0ab.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149380","description":"

Cloud Strife - Final Fantasy VII Remake

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Cloud's outfit is quite probably the only one that has undergone such a drastic change from his original (okay, and Tifa's too) and as a huge fan myself, it's nice to see cosplayers already stepping back into the hack-and-slashed SOLDIER uniform that made so much more canonical sense than the new.

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2017 marks the 30th anniversary of the Final Fantasy franchise, and fans can simultaneously celebrate the 20th anniversary of Final Fantasy VII specifically. You can bet this year is seriously coming up Squeenix.

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(image source: Will Wong)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/i/n/final-fantasy-remake-74675.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/f/i/n/final-fantasy-remake-74675.jpg","type":"slide","id":"149379","description":"

Cloud Strife - Final Fantasy VII Remake

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This is a game that video game audience has asked for time and again. Square Enix has toyed with our emotions with each and every console that they've pushed out onto the market, and at last we're finally coming into our own.

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The principle characters of Final Fantasy have always been a mainstay at conventions, although in latter years most Cloud cosplayers continue to gravitate toward all the bells and whistles in his Advent Children outfit. Now we're bound for a return to form. 

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(image source: VG24/7)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/dc58716a988d1f9c0bb706c96f3c555b.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/dc58716a988d1f9c0bb706c96f3c555b.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10303","description":"

Sombra - Overwatch

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The game has garnered more than its fair share of internet outrage over the past few months - from Symmetra's "white girl" vampire skin during Halloween, to Mei's botched waistline in her most recent CNY skins. Further cosplay efforts like above Pion Kim's fantastic Sombra came under fire for "brownface", i.e. her use of bronzer to darker her skin tone so that she could more closely match the character's.

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D.Va and Mei are both just as likely to pop up at your local convention, particularly the former as her bodysuit and props are fairly inexpensive and easy to come by, but with a few more well-needed updates to the Sombra character kit due to hit the PTR, this purple-haired hacker is sure to pop up more and more. 

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(Sombra - Boop! Hacking Complete! (Overwatch Cosplay) 오버워치 - 솜브라)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/w/a/l/wallpaper-sombra-overwatch-missyeny-danj09k-2a182.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/w/a/l/wallpaper-sombra-overwatch-missyeny-danj09k-2a182.png","type":"slide","id":"149376","description":"

Sombra - Overwatch

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New year, new you... so far Overwatch hasn't lost any of its hype over the past 2.5 competitive seasons, and it doesn't look like it's going anywhere soon. With new events popping out every few months (the latest of which includes a new game mode, and Chinese New Year themed skins, sprays, and emotes), it looks like there's plenty of food for inspirational fodder in this Blizzard behemoth for a long time to come.

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(image source: DeviantArt)

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/6/c/56c68ec5854ed-48507.gif","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/5/6/c/56c68ec5854ed-48507.gif","type":"slide","id":"149331","description":"

It's 2017! Out with the old and in with the new!

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--Or is it?

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With the closing of an arguably disastrous 2016, cosplayers are gearing up for a new year of convention circuits and getting psyched up by an impressively long list of geek culture-centric movies and video games.

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And yet it starting to look like there's going to be a heck of a lot of nostalgia running around dealer's rooms across the globe.

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Let's take a look at what some of those might be!

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(image source: funnycutegifs feat. D-Piddy)

"}]]]>