Monday, June 29, 2009

Morning in Vana'diel: Retro Chique.

Morning in Vana'diel is your daily dose of FFXI and all things Vana'diel. Give us your thoughts on the interesting topics of the day! Today, Ring wonders what is up with this new gear from previous Final Fantasy remakes? Is this like retro because it comes from older games, or is this futuristic because the design was from the remakes after FFXI was launched? OH MY GOD! GEAR PARADOX!

We will have our full coverage of the new expansion, the gear and the stats a little later today, but for now lets have a little look at the look of this new stuff! Right off the bat the new "mage" hat not only looks great and well detailed, but it pays a great homage to the design style of older Final Fantasy games. Now, I know that I will be punished for this but I haven't played all of the Final Fantasy games. You can forward your death threats to Omoikitte. That being said I have seen the design trends for the games and especially the remakes, and I have always appreciated how FFXI has integrated the older games themes into itself. I especially liked that FFXI did this in it's own way, because no Final Fantasy was ever been a true sequel to the previous numbered editions (yes, there have been sequels, but not a numbered sequel). There are themes that run through all of the games like the job system, the summons and even the crystals. These do a lot to provide a structure that is familiar to the player while at the same time allowing the developers to create their own unique world.

The homages to older Final Fantasy games should be rife in a game like FFXI because they provide the consistency and the nostalgia that gets people to play FFXI and love it, without having to worry about world and story consistency over 11+ iterations of a game let alone hundreds of developers, writers and artists. FFXI is large enough in and of itself to potential require an amount of retcon depending on who you ask about the lore. For every Final Fantasy they can create the world anew without fear of massive inconsistency or the past shirking the present. WoW runs into this problem because of the developers need to follow the storylines of the Warcraft games. The areas that you can potentially explore are already written and it becomes a choose-your-own-adventure when it comes to potential expansions. Final Fantasy has the same themes, trappings and similarities through out it's existence, and these do a great job to give you a familiar understanding in a whole new world.

Do you like the themes that flow throughout the Final Fantasy series? Is it time for SE to stop recycling the same ideas over and over? Do you think the new gear is neat? Or do you think that SE has just run out of new ideas? Leave a comment and tell us what you think!


Araelus said...

I am really enjoying the FFIII Knight and Magus/Warlock hats. I want the hat for Sages, though!

rob-donnelly said...

Turban still > /sigh

Ringthree said...

Rob, I love you but read before you post! XD

Zeotah said...

I think the retro look is great stuff. The FF series has always been about innovation while respecting its roots. I didn't realize this until recently, but looking closer at the Nuevo body, it resembles the armor of the knight in FF3DS.