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Evastio
11-14-2012, 01:00 AM
From Friday last week to Monday this week I went on a Final Fantasy IV marathon (European GBA version). It's been a long time since I last played through Final Fantasy IV, and I must say, playing through it brought back so many good memories and it reminded me just why it's my favourite Final Fantasy. The theme of redemption, victims of Golbez'/Zemus' evil throughout the world uniting to fight their enemy, the strong story all throughout the game (that doesn't have characters forcing players into 10 minute monologues or identity crisises), the varied boss strategies that you have to use with the team you're given at the time (which gives all FFIV players an even playing field with no cheap strategies like Ultima x 5 or Dual Wield-Rapid Fire), I really have to wonder why I don't replay this game more often.

...yeah, a big portion of my FFIV is probably nostalgia, but even without it it'd still be my most favourite FF since there's something "pure" and classic about it.

Now that I've also got plenty of RPG experience in my sleeves, I was also suprised at just how much my tactics have changed when playing through the game. I found myself using Rods and Ice/Fire/Thunder Rods as items a lot more with my mages. I also found myself defending on my magic casters' turns during random encounters so that I wouldn't be facing strong counterattacks from dealing weak damage to them. I was also taking advantage of spells like Berserk and Slow a lot more than I did as a kid (especially against bosses. Slow didn't always seem to have an effect, even if it did always hit, but it did make some boss battles much easier). There was also some unique properties to enemies that I took advantage of (eg: some enemies in the Giant of Babil get confused if lightning magic is used on them, a Black Flan x 2 and Grenade x 2 random encounter will automatically be defeated if lightning magic is casted on all enemies, regardless of how strong it is since a chain reaction will be set off killing them all in an explosion). As a kid my main strategy was "RRRRUUUNNN!!!" and go all out on MP usage until my mages run out of HP or MP, in which case I resort to the former strategy.

Another interesting thing I noticed is that some playable characters get weaknesses at certain levels. Cecil got weak against ice magic around the Tower of Zot area (he was equipped with the Flame Shield and Mail, and both of them say they resist ice in-game), and once I got to the Tower of Babil area, Cecil lost the ice weakness and Kain became weak against ice. It wasn't the equipment since Kain was weak against ice when the only elemental armor he had was the Flame Shield (which is supposed to resist ice). Also, in the Lunar Subterrane, Edward had a weakness to Ice for whatever reason (that's what Zemus' Breath casting scan on him revealed, that and he took heavy damage against Blue Dragons' blizzard attacks). He was the only member on my team that had an elemental weakness at the time.

I defeated the game in 16:44. I wasn't really doing a speed run (especially since I was aiming to get all treasure, all lost forever bestiary entries, and I switched around my team at the end since I've always stuck with the original final five and I wanted to switch it up this time), but I'm still quite impressed with that time since I always remember having my hour number be 18 or higher by the time I defeated the game. My final team was Cecil, Cid, Yang, Edward, and Porom. That team was actually pretty awesome. Cecil's Ragnarok, Yang's Godhand, and Edward's Apollo's Harp made undead and dragons, respectively, really easy to dispatch (especially since Dinozombies, Dracozombies, and Lunasaurs all took 9999 damage from their physical attacks). Edward's Apollo's Harp's effectiveness against dragons also proved insanely useful against other dragons like Red, Blue, Gold, and Silver Dragons (and it made quick work of the White Dragon and Dark Bahamut battles). Cid's Thor's Hammer was useful, but not as much as the latter three (it did nicely against Li'l Murderers and Wicked Masks though). Lacking an offensive magic caster didn't hurt much. Actually, I'd say having 4 fighters made random encounters much easier and quicker. As for bosses, only some of them were harder due to not having an offensive magic caster (Zeromus and Plague Horror) while the rest were actually easier (thanks to Edward being an awesome dragon slayer with Apollo's Harp).

Anyways, for a topic... I guess discuss either how your strategies for FFIV have changed from as a kid to now, or help me out with some of the oddities of FFIV like elemental character weaknesses or unique enemy properties. (know any ones besides exploding Flans?)

Jowy
11-14-2012, 01:06 AM
I always thought that the colour of the flan was indicative of what element to use (lightning on the yellow ones in the antlion's lair, red ones in the kaipo cave) to kill it. Didn't know you could use rods and staves as items until I discovered EoFF back forever ago. Never knew about exploding flans though! Finding the hidden ground treasures and mystery monster peninsula in the underworld are things you'll never discover on your own though.

Evastio
11-14-2012, 01:36 AM
Hidden ground treasures? What's that?

Gamblet
11-14-2012, 02:56 PM
I think he means the invisible ground secret locations in dungeons.

Jowy
11-14-2012, 03:40 PM
here's a few:

Final Fantasy IV Hidden Items (http://www.finalfantasykingdom.net/finalfantasyivhiddenitems.php)

Evastio
11-15-2012, 12:00 AM
Oh yeah, those. I remember reading about them a long time ago. (Checks them in all the versions of FFIV I have)

FFIV for the GBA (both NA and PAL versions) and the US SNES FFIV don't have the hidden items while the Japanese SNES FFIV has them. I'd say those items are glitches if anything, since they were removed in later versions of FFIV. Yeah, it said that the PS version of FFIV has them, but I kind of doubt it since they're showing the patched Japanese SNES FFIV version in the screenshots that prove those items exist, rather than screenshots of the PS version. Also, I don't really think they'd reintroduce those hidden items in the PS version after removing them in the US SNES version. Then again, the PS NA version was based off of the Japanese SNES version, so it might have carried over. Either way, I'm certain it's a glitch.

Jowy
11-15-2012, 01:24 AM
confirmation: they are in FFIV Advance, not in FFIV Complete Collection. I always check for the extra random dark sword when I go through the Sealed Cave.

Evastio
11-15-2012, 01:33 AM
What? Really?

...then again, I only checked the ones in the area you get FuSoYa in. So the Dark Sword in the Sealed Cave is present in the GBA version but the hidden items in FuSoYa's lair aren't? Also, do you have the NA or PAL version of FFIV Advance?

Jowy
11-15-2012, 04:30 PM
I have the NA version; Always been under the impression that GBA games aren't region coded. I can't recall getting any of the items, but I always trip the encounter with the Red Giants just for some extra exp before I grab FuSoYa.

Evastio
11-16-2012, 01:16 AM
I have the NA version; Always been under the impression that GBA games aren't region coded. I can't recall getting any of the items, but I always trip the encounter with the Red Giants just for some extra exp before I grab FuSoYa.
Huh? That was the first one I checked in FFIV Advance (NA Version). None of them showed up for me in any of the GBA versions. Maybe they're only accessible the very first time you enter the room? I can't see any other explanation since we both looked for that one hidden item in the exact same version.

Jowy
11-16-2012, 04:55 PM
i also may be going insane, you never know...i'll check for the rod in the lunar subterrane sometime after work and see if that is there.

Roogle
11-19-2012, 03:09 AM
There are certain pieces of equipment that grant elemental resistances and weaknesses. The character weaknesses that you encountered were a part of that system. If I recall correctly, Edward has an item called Red Coat or something similar in the Gameboy Advance version of the game that gives him a resistance against fire and a weakness to ice.

Yar
12-01-2012, 09:09 AM
When I first played this game around six or seven years old, my strategy was simple:

Kain, Jump! Cecil, Attack! Rosa, Heal! Rydia, Summon! Edge, Attack!

Of course I was just a kid then. I remember having levels around the lower nineties on the moon just because grinding was a way I spent my time when I could have been outside playing :jess:


Nowadays, I have a much better understanding of how the game works, just through what I've learned over the years. I probably play the game once or twice a year, and I have a better understanding of what each stat does, and how to manipulate them to get what I want. I know when to use which skills and even when to wait to cast magic efficiently.

These days, I try to speed run. At least on the GBA version (grew up on the SNES version, but it's practically unplayable now). I think my quickest time was just shy of nine hours. I'm hoping next time I can get it under eight.


Have you tried the DS version Evastio? It was nice because you needed to use new strategies to defeat some of the monsters. I still prefer the 2D version, but every once in a while I'll run through the DS game.