Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Final Fantasy Fans

So, I was roaming my new stomping grounds today in search of mahjong . That's right, mahjong. Specifically, mahjong that I can play on my Nintendo DS. I eventually settled on a Japanese -- What!? The Japanese make mahjong games!? -- effort titled Everybody Loves Mahjong(I think). It's pretty cool, but that is not really the point here. The point is that I wish I had had my camera with me.

But first, some background:

Final Fantasy XII is another Japanese videogame, one which was released last week in Japan and which will sell many, many more copies than Everybody Loves Mahjong, no matter how much the Japanese love mahjong. The Final Fantasy series is quite popular in Taiwan as well. It was on store shelves here in Taipei last week selling for upwards of 70 USD(ELM was about $26) . What I'm trying to convey is that yes, Final Fantasy XII is popular, but hell you can buy it already so calm down! Got it? Alright.

So, back to the mall, there were lots of PS2 demo stations setup with Final Fantasy XII. One of these had about 12 kids(actually, they were all probably in their early twenties at the least) crowded around it watching another kid play the game. Some of the dudes were standing there with what I would consider appropriate expressions and body language. That is to say, they looked kinda bored. Good for them. There was one kid though that made me wish I had a video camera, or had at least brought my powershot. He was kind of standing with his weight tilted forward on the balls of his feet, shifting back and forth. He was damn excited. You would think by looking at him that Taipei had been offered a franchise in the NBA and in their inagural year the Taipei Tai Chi Masters had made it to the finals, and he was watching overtime of game seven right then and there. And then, when one of the characters unleashed one of those super mega attacks that Final Fantasy is famous for, you should have seen him! Wow! I don't know though, maybe they were watching some kid beat the game or something. I have no idea, but it doesn't seem like it should be any more exciting than, "Hey, that was pretty cool."

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At 3:15 AM, Blogger Mark said...

Do you know anywhere to buy US FF games after FF9 in Taibei? I'd love to get caught up on that series, but not on the Japanese versions!

At 6:18 PM, Blogger Jon said...

I haven't seen the US versions, but I think there are international versions of X and X-2 which are in English. You might be able to find those. PlayAsia has it here.

Of course, you'll still need a Japanese or chipped PS2.

At 7:16 PM, Blogger Mark said...

Ugh, the "international" versions are the exact opposite of what I want- English sound with Japanese subtitles and menus. I suppose it would be nice if I were a Japanese guy studying English, but I'd rather have it the other way around.

At 7:51 PM, Blogger Jon said...

Well, I think there is an English option which gives you english menus, etc. I'm not sure if it still has the Japanese subtitles or not, but other than that it would be the same as the US version.

Also, I think the english voice acting is probably pretty good by videogame standards. As a general rule though, I vastly prefer that games keep the original japanese track and just subtitle it in english(or at least give you the option). Not many games do that though.


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