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Music Friday: Rise of Iron

Are you ready for Destiny‘s next expansion? Or are you letting a bunch of tech mites just flutter around your head?

Rise of Iron is coming up next week (hype!) but we got an early treat: the title screen changed in the last patch to what is gonna be our welcome to the expansion for the next year. Hmmm… these stuff tends to happen in MMOs, eh? *ahem* The theme proper starts at about 3 minutes in, but if you let it go you’ll even find the original theme, some Tower tracks and more.

We have a full year to go before Destiny 2 (if it’s not, you know, delayed) so Rise of Iron is gonna be what keeps us busy for a while. Story, new raid and content, and the awesome private matches (the thing I never knew I wanted until I tried them)… joined with hopefully some good event content (halloween, SRL)! Here’s to hoping Destiny keeps being awesome for another full year.

In a funky twist of fate, I am going on vacations next week so I might be able to play at launch, which will be quite exciting! Last time I did this was for Mist of Pandaria! This also means that maybe next week I may not have a chance to post but I’ll be back before you get a chance to miss me… or after…🙂

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Music Friday: Doom and Gloom

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I just found out today that Parasite Eve‘s soundtrack was composed by Yoko Shimomura, the very same who made the music for Kingdom Hearts and the upcoming Final Fantasy XV.

Parasite Eve was an RPG released around the time when Squaresoft was at its peak during the PlayStation era. Main protagonist is NYPD cop Aya Brea who is suddenly involved in a bizarre series of events with a mysterious creature that seems human but sports incredible powers, while struggling with these very same powers herself. It’s a detached sequel to a japanese horror book sporting the same name.

Similar to the book and despite the game/rpg nature, Parasite Eve retained an aura of horror to it with tense environments, camera angles a bit reminiscent of the Resident Evil games, weird situations and creepy music – one such theme is Doom and Gloom which appears in some areas of the game including the first “dungeon”. Having just witnessed Eve’s (the antagonist and main actress of a play) power as she burns a theater and makes some people spontaneously combust, you then follow backstage where you must find a way to enter the practice room to stop her. Along the way you’ll find charred bodies and Eve’s notes – she was confusing her powers with fever and wrote her experiences in a diary.

It’s a creepy setting, and the entire game is like this – Aya hot on the heels of Eve, following her trail of dead bodies and increasingly bizarre events. It’s a fantastic game, and one of the many jewels of the PlayStation era.

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Music Friday: Tumbling Down

I continue my short musical journey through the Crystal Tower raid, but I am suddenly facing huge bosses! On the upside, the tempo kicks ass.

All three “wings” of the Crystal Tower series end with encounters with big bosses with mechanic-heavy fights (within the confines of a 24-man difficulty raid). They also share a common battle theme: Tumbling Down. It’s a powerful theme and one of my favorite battle themes in Final Fantasy XIV. Whats-his-name from Labyrinth, Emperor Xande from Crystal Tower and Cerberus from World of Darkness… all their encounters serve as the end of their respective zones* in this raid series.

The Crystal Tower series is obviously inspired from the dungeon of the same name in Final Fantasy III, and musical themes are no exception. Tumbling Down is the XIV version of the “Boss Battle” theme from the original III (above). It was alter remade for the DS version.

*Cloud of Darkness, the true final boss of the entire series of raids (and of III proper), has her own theme – a remix of the original theme from her battle.

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Kingsglaive: a taste of XV

I finally watched it! Kingsglaive is our first tangible taste of the world to come with Final Fantasy XV. An entirely CGI movie – like Advent Children – that is neither prequel nor sequel, but rather happens in parallel to the events of the game’s early moments.

This post will contain spoilers for Kingsglaive and Final Fantasy XV, though I won’t dwelve into details, more like broad strokes. Still, you have been warned.

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Music Friday: Shattered

This Anima nerf has gotten me to do the Crystal Tower series of raids again, and reminded me of just what an amazing soundtrack they have.

Shattered plays during regular encounters in the Crystal Tower raid, the second in the set of “casual” 24-man raid during Final Fantasy XIV‘s 2.0 series.The music is all calm and pretty – arrangements of Final Fantasy III‘s music – and when the encounters start it picks up to this theme.

Perhaps the biggest impact this theme has is that it is a remix of previously existing themes and as such is extra special to veteran Final Fantasy players, but newcomers to the series can appreciate the powerful battle music – which still manages to be left behind by the boss battle at the end which can be the subject for another day *wink*.

I am glad I get to do these old raids again as part of my Anima relic quest. They are as fun as ever, and always have that “this should have an Extreme version” quality to them. With my current play time, it might take me a few weeks of doing the Crystal Tower quest to get the items I need so I’m sure to visit the place often… and I’m turning up the volume every time.

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Better late than never

Last night I finally got my 210 Anima weapon in Final Fantasy XIV! YES, I am months late. With all other stuff I have been playing I just didn’t grind for the ‘unidentifiable’ set of items, just purchasing them every now and then.

With yesterday’s patch, which heavily nerfed the costs of these items, I managed to get all of them with a combination of tomes and beast tribe tokens. Used all my Grand Company seals to get half of the craftable items and bought the other straight from the market board. Result: I am now the owner of whats-its-name Black Mage i210 weapon. I still have another step to go through before taking it to that patch’s top level (which still is not the last step), and this one includes going into the Crystal Tower series of 24-man raids.

But Saga, didn’t you know the item you get from there can be obtained even if you don’t have the Anima quest? You could have gathered this items months ago!

NO, I DIDN’T KNOW! I AM AN EMBARRASSMENT! But anyways, I got lucky with a <5 minute queue for World of Darkness last night and was reminded just how cool of a raid those are; music is exceptionally great. SE should someday readjust 24-mans and make an Extreme version; the difficulty of Mhach gives hope for more challenging and fun raids.

Oh, and before I go: the achievement for getting the Anima is called ‘Animaniac‘. GG SE, GG.

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Music Friday: The Ark

I started Lightning Returns the other day and… Hm? Yes, I just did. Yeah, I know.

Lightning Returns: Final Fantasy XIII, also known as FFXIII-3, came out at a terrible time. Back then our wonderful government imposed a $42 tax on courier deliveries. What was previously a $12 delivery jumped to $54 – almost the price of a full game! And thus, it was the first Final Fantasy game that I had to hold off on purchasing. Last year, during my trip to Miami I found it (used, but in excellent state) at a Gamestop store and I finally got it, but I hadn’t started playing it until recently (stupid sexy Playstation 4).

What can I say? I am early in the game. Early impressions: I do not like the feeling of the time limit, and did PS3 games all look like this? Otherwise, it seems like a fun game to play through and I should since it finished the XIII trilogy and I have already played both prequels. I am just starting to get the hang of the different jobs or schematas you can have, but so far it seems like a fun system. Combat is pretty good, though. The game’s ‘hub’, called The Ark, is a nice stopping point to relax (time stops in there) and gather some items – it has a nice theme, too! This is today’s theme.

Last time I played I finished day 1. I know now what the game’s 5 main “quests” are, and I have read that I should use Chronostasis more often (or rather ‘use it’ since I didn’t know what it does). Wonder how long the game is… with Rise of Iron out on the 20th of September I will probably jump back to that.

Man, my PS3 backlog is big…