In which I rant about Final Fantasy XIII-2

Okay, I’m generally not much of an angry gamer, but I may come across as one in this recent article I did at GamerANX about my lack of enthusiasm for Final Fantasy XIII-2. I really don’t harbor feelings of intense hatred for the ultra-linear predecessor to the second direct sequel in FF history, I promise! But I do get a little snarky (and poke fun at the new weird bulbous-headed moogles). Give it a read, if you’re interested!

I did do a bit of research for the article, since I haven’t really been keeping up on the news regarding the title. Once I heard Ezio was going to be a DLC costume for the new male lead Noel, I pretty much threw in the towel. I admit that I probably will purchase the game in the future, because in all honesty, the gameplay looks pretty intriguing, but I’m definitely not in a rush. Even a 40/40 from Famitsu will not sway me (which it did get, by the way, and I’m not sure who really puts much faith in those scores anyway, outside of rabid fanboys).

Well, through my research I did stumble on a couple of character design-related annoyances that I would’ve loved to put in the original article, but they just didn’t fit. When you think of absurd costumes, you think of Final Fantasy, right? I thought X was about as weird as it could get, but check this out:

This is Caius Ballad, the main antagonist of XIII-2 and the character you see fighting with Lightening in the first teaser trailer, as well as the game’s logo. There are so many things about this character design that just rub me the wrong way! Honestly, I don’t even know what to say without digging myself an early grave. I am notoriously a fan of Seymour, after all…

What I liked about Seymour and Final Fantasy X (overall), was that the majority of it didn’t seem to take itself too seriously. I mean, who takes Seymour seriously? Or Kuja, for that matter (another favorite FF character of mine). The problem with XIII, and potentially XIII-2, is that it’s taking itself far too seriously, and yet Tetsuya Nomura is churning out silly character designs like these. [edit: It’s come to my attention that I’m not really articulating my point very well. I think my major beef with Caius stems from the fact that his design seems like one big a big mash of character stereotypes. Or maybe I just think he’s ugly?]

And have you heard of Chocolina? When the name first arose, all that was known about her was that she appeared around the world dressed in chocobo-themed clothing selling goods. Me, being the naive gamer I am… I pictured a dorky little girl dressed in full-body chocobo costume. Instead, we get this:

And of course this single image has already spurred dozens of news articles talking about the “hot new shopkeeper” who’ll make “sexy cosplay.” Yay? I should be excited, right?

Naw, I’m just all-around disappointed and throughly unamused by pretty much everything surrounding Final Fantasy XIII-2 at this point. Maybe I’m just grumpy, maybe I’m stuck harboring some metaphorical ideal of what a Final Fantasy game should be, but either way, this game really couldn’t interest me less at this point. I play RPGs for story and characters above all else, and Final Fantasy just isn’t pushing the right buttons anymore. I’m sure the gameplay will be pretty neat, though.

What are your thoughts on Final Fantasy XIII and XIII-2? Are you excited for the sequel?

About Anne Lee

Also known as apricotsushi. Anne can be written with the kanji for apricot (杏), and sushi was the most quintessentially Japanese thing I could think of when I was 13, resulting in my goofy, albeit memorable, nickname.