Saturday, 7 June 2014

Let's Play: Final Fantasy VIII - Part Twenty Four

Part Twenty Three


Day Ten: She Wears Short Skirts, I'm Impressed By Her Ingenuity

 So yes, we are asking ourselves why Selphie isn't the main character.

 Which would make her the third one so far. Out of how many remains to be seen, but I doubt it will stop here.

 Okay, okay. We're getting a little bit ahead of ourselves.

 So, the gang is hanging around totally unopposed in a garage at the top of a prison that has just buried itself into the ground.

 One wonders why a. the guards aren't coming up to stop them and if they can't, b. why anyone would design a prison with inaccessible garages in the first place.

 One also wonders why these vehicles aren't locked.

 Selphie takes the yellow car with Rinoa and Quistis, much to Irvine's disappointment.

He's as smooth as the surface of Mars.
 The boys take the other car and they drive off to a cross roads where they decide what to do next.

 While off screen Selphie learned from Nina that, not only were they going to fire missiles at Balamb Garden, but they were also going to fire them at Trabia Garden. Remember Galbadia Garden gets off because the Sorceress wants to live there, and I don't blame her as it's really pretty.

 As a result of this news, Selphie insists on going to the missile base and attempting to stop the launch.

 She's from Trabia Garden and would quite like for her home not to be blown to pieces by the military of a country run by an evil Sorceress.

 It's also in the interest of three of the members of this merry little band to alert Balamb Garden to the missile strike so they can evacuate.

 So it's clearly a job for two teams. Nina tells the others to let Zog decide who goes on what team, since he's the leader.

But of course, he can't resist being a misanthropic git.

-Le gasp- Someone with a moral compass?!
That must be such a shock for you!

I didn't want you to be either
 but we don't always get what we want, do we?
 I must say, I'm getting more than a little annoyed with Zog's need to point out that Nina isn't one of them.

 She's not from Timber either, but she was happy to risk life and limb to fight for its independence. She didn't need to go back to save you guys with Irvine, she could have just left you all there to be tortured and die, but she risked her life to do it anyway.

 Nina is, what we in the trade call, a good person.

 So she's not going to just abandon a place that her 'it's complicated' grew up as well as the people whose lives she's repeatedly put in danger. Hell, all that is irrelevant, she'd probably go to save all these kids even if she'd never met you losers.

 Because, she's a good person.

 Jesus. This guy.

 So anyway, I'm given the option to make two teams and I split them in my classic combos. So Selphie has Zell and Quistis and Zog has Nina (who he does not deserve) and Irvine.

 Of course, this is after they see missiles flying through the sky, and Irvine (who still hasn't explained why he wasn't captured or killed) says that they were planning to strike Trabia first.

 If Trabia Garden gets destroyed but Balamb Garden is fine, I'm going to be very angry.

 The two team leaders have a quick chat about Selphie's plan.

 Unfortunately, this about as much as she's come up with.

 I know it doesn't look like a good start, but have a little patience.

 For now, we're going to follow Zog and Co. for a little bit.

 These three make their way down the road until they find a parochial train station where a Galbadian soldier is hopping off the train for a second for something. Possibly because he forgot to get a newspaper from the station shop.

 They get on the train (and I do admire this game's commitment to using trains, it's cute) and it starts to leave the station just before the soldier comes back.

 This leads to a scene that I really enjoyed.

 It was like one of those scenes in a cartoon where someone is trying to catch up with a train and Bugs Bunny is casually talking to them while they're doing so.

 Only in this case, Irvine is Bugs Bunny.

He's not wrong, the guy keeps up for a surprisingly long time.
 Irvine Kinneas: Personal Life Coach?

 Now it's time for Selphie and Co.'s infiltration of the missile base.

 Getting into the base was almost disgustingly easy for them. It's like the Galbadian Army has never has a vehicle stolen before, because they're met with no suspicion whatsoever.

 The Galbadian army seems to be stocked half with douchebags and half with overly trusting sweethearts.

 In order to sneak in and move around unopposed, Selphie and Co. don uniforms that had been left in the vehicle they'd stolen.

Look how small Selphie is! She's so cuuuute!
 She also plans to 'blow this place to smithereens'.

 She's something of an adorable, happy go lucky, psychopath, this one.

 Okay, let's get into the meat of the mission.

 Firstly, it took me an embarrassingly long time to get through the door. This is one of those games where you need to click on the door's card swiping lock to go through the unlocking procedure, not the door itself. I did not realise this, hence the embarrassingly long time.

 The door was opened because the vehicle they took happened to have a handy dandy ID card in it with enough clearance to get them into a missile base. Again, I question what kind of id-

 It's Biggs.

 That's my headcanon, this ID card belongs to Biggs and that's why it was still in the car.

 Don't think you'll get away with the other plot holes, game.

 So, with Biggs' ID card in hand they slip into the base.

 They're immediately stopped by a soldier.

 But only because he wanted them to stop running. It's dangerous on those catwalks, after all.

 Actually, it's worth noting here that you have the option to either fight guards or talk your way out of fighting in this base. You don't always have this option, but you do often get it.

 One of the other options you get in this section is the option to lie.

 While trying to work out what to do, I went to talk to the maintenance team and they asked Selphie to get them another team in to replace them in the work they were doing (which appeared to be waving their arms around) so they could do a scheduled inspection.

 With this new mission, the teams was allowed into the missile silo to talk to another guy.

 Instead of telling him the truth, I had Selphie lie to him and the maintenance team from before to orchestrate a situation where they were allowed into the power control room unsupervised. A little bit of sabotage later, and the power went out.

 The maintenance team immediately rushed over and I was given the option to fight them, or tell them that the team was going to get them. Of course I took option to lie and there resulted a funny scene where they went into the dark room I just vacated and Selphie and Co. beat them up off screen.

 Now that the power is out, Selphie and the gang are able to move around the base more freely now. As soldiers always immediately abandon their posts the second there's a black out.

 Nah, the reason the guards are gone is because the last missile can't be put into place unless they physically push it themselves. Which, in order to avoid a fight, I had Selphie and Co. help them with. It was just standard 'bash this button' guff.

 This might have an impact later on, we'll have to wait and see.

 Now that's done, Selphie and Co. get the ability to muck around with the missile settings.

 By messing around with the error settings, the possibility of the missiles actually hitting Balamb Garden is radically decreased. Which does not fill me with confidence that Trabia Garden made it out of this intact.

 With the minor sabotage finished, it's time to try and stop the launch and blow up the base.

 Which makes me wonder, do real military bases have self-destruct options like they do in video games and Bond movies?

 Once they've taken down the guys in the control room, they stop the launch and start the self destruct sequence. You get the option to pick the time for the self destruct sequence.

 I took the advice of my friend and picked forty minutes. Which one, meant I had to exit the base the long way around, as the emergency exit only opens at t-minus twenty minutes and two, I didn't need even need that long, as I managed to finish the entire escape sequence in under ten minutes. If you play this, just pick twenty unless you're super MLG. (Disclaimer: Harriette Reece is not MLG, she just got lucky.)

 Selphie and Co. would have succeeded had it not been for one really bitter soldier who restarted the missile strike and a guy who brought out a battle mech.

 Just keep that in mind, a plan that a seventeen year old girl made up on the fly ran more smoothly and came closer to succeeding than one created by an experienced army General.

This went down pretty easily, actually.
 Not that it really matters. Like every plan that's been enacted by the party in this game, it failed anyway.

 The missiles launch and the base explodes around Selphie's squad.

 Then it's back to Zog and Co. at Balamb Garden, which is in chaos. There are students running all over and monsters have the run of the place.

 Apparently, the shadowy Hokage blokes have made their move and tried to take over the Garden at the worst possible time splitting the student populace between those who side with Cid and those who side with NORG.

 God, I hope that's an acronym.

 Anyway, Zog decides to try and find Cid, and on the way the team runs into Fuujin and Raijin, who give a brief and kinda useless synopsis of the situation before reaffirming their loyalty to Seifer and running off.

 So, the missiles are coming, the Garden is in turmoil and half the squad is probably dead, what am I going to do now?

 Go back to Zog's room to pick up that magazine I missed and take a nap.

 So that's it for today's session. There will be another Let's Rework FF8 post on Monday before Day Eleven starts on Tuesday. I'm also going to have a special bonus post on Sunday because I've got more fox stuff to share.

 See you guys then!

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