You should just PS1 ISOs and play for free. All this really does is add some new character models which clash with the unaltered lower-resolution backgrounds.I also hear that you could download the non-“remaster” version of FF8 on Steam and then install an “HD upscale” mod.There is a similar mod in the works for this “remaster” version, but the creator of that mod has been working on it for quite some time, and he has a Patreon account associated with the project which incentivizes perpetual development, so please be careful. I am not accusing the person who is working on the mod, I am only encouraging potential purchasers to be cautious. As such, I can’t recommend this version of the game, not for $19.99 USD at the time of writing this review.A must have for any fan of one of the best titles in the series. Final Fantasy VIII – Remastered gives us high quality textures and character models which both serve as a great improvement compared to the original. If you loved this game as a kid and would like to revisit it after years of contemporary gaming, you’ll find soon enough that your nostalgia has conceled some really annoying memories from you. Lo-ong pauses in dialogues, Guardian Force animations that take forever to play, random encounters that pop-up in the least wanted moments. With Remastered edition those inconveniences are fixed with a single press of a hot-key, so lacking in the original.
Talk about an underrated game. For the supposed “black sheep” of the series this entry in the Final Fantasy franchise sure has a lot going for it.I gotta say, a ton of the complaints about this game seem very overblown and facetious after I replayed this game more recently. It gets hated for a crazy story, the junction system, and a myriad of other issues. This feels very unfair to the game, and I see these flaws as the core strengths of this game compared to many of its’ contemporaries. At first glance the story is about you becoming and filling the role of a SeeD troop. An elite mercenary that takes contracts all around the world using their fighting prowess to get the contracts done. While this is the backdrop for the story the whole game, the actual meat goes into a more personal direction for Squall. Over the course of the game Squall develops character wise in a very touching way.
The inner voice we get for the protag in this game is very unique. It lets us see a side of Squall that normally a JRPG would leave out and not bother telling us. Trying to be as spoiler free as possible, but the game contains flashback scenes where you control a different party. These are a great way to do flashbacks in my opinion and give the player control instead of just showing things in cut scenes. As you play the game you’ll come to learn what these mean and I think this is one of those things that’s pretty cool in this game.
The game play is at its’ core standard JRPG fare for the time, but they did try a few things to spice it up for you. Let’s start with the extremely polarizing junction system. Basically you take the magic you have accrued and slot it to a stat. The magic increases the stat by x amount and this is how you want to power up the party through the game instead of relying on simply leveling up. The enemies in this one scale with your party and their levels, so you can’t just grind to beat everything without thinking. Personally, I love the junction system. Sure, it’s incredibly easy to break it even if you are going in blind, but for me half the fun of games is trying to break them and make them bend to your will. They’ve also expanded on limit breaks in this game. Instead of having a bar filled as you get attacked, your character has a chance to get a limit break when they are in low health. Not only that, but they made the limit breaks very interactive now instead of just something cool you watch.
Don’t get me wrong, they’re still very cool to watch, but they now require some input from you. I think this is a great mechanic and makes the limit break system feel a lot more like you as the player doing the move instead of a get out of jail free card. There is a problem though. This system and the way they designed it makes it incredibly easy to spam limit breaks and render any difficulty in the game null and void. It takes some self control from the player to not abuse it, and I think that is a huge flaw in the balance of the game. For example, during my fight with the game’s super boss, I had 2 party members at low health and spamming their limits, with a third staying topped off and ready to revive the other 2 if they should ever go down. It’s way more effective to take care of the challenge in this game in this way and it shouldn’t be up to the player to have to nerf himself to account for the game.
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