What does a dead PS3 and Final Fantasy XIII-2 have in common?

Nov 7, 2012

They’re both annoying things I have to endure right now.

Okay, okay, an explanation is in order. A few days ago I was playing Uncharted 3 when suddenly the console turned off, beeped thrice and blinked the power diode. After turning it on again, the system requested that it could check the file system for corruption. Fair enough. It got to 19% when it did it again. Beep beep beep, blink blink blink.

I let it cool for a few hours and tried turning it on again. It lasted for about 5 minutes. I realized that it might slip into a coma at any time, so I started backing up my most recent savegames. It shut down again after 10 minutes, but I managed to get most of my new saves out of the dying thing.

It just so happens that I recently acquired a copy of Final Fantasy XIII-2 for the Xbox, and now that Uncharted is postponed indefinitely I might as well play this instead.

I was skeptical at first, and I still am. I haven’t played XIII, and having read 2’s “beginner’s primer” I still have no idea what the hell is going on. There’s something about a city with a god-like entity, and someone becomes enemies of it, and then there’s the obligatory crystal reference that every game in this series must have by law, and then everything was alright, but it wasn’t anyway, and now someone appeared in a dream, and then he rode an asteroid to the ground and everyone just trusts him. I’m lost, though that’s probably my fault for not playing the first one.

So far, the world of FFXIII-2 seems so modern that it doesn’t seem like a Final Fantasy game to me. I had the same problem with VII. One of the protagonists in this one has some kind of mech dragon, everyone carries laser assault rifles, and everyone is apparently 15 years old. Apart from the last one, this isn’t what I think of when I think Final Fantasy.

X and XII weren’t like this, anyway; the former had machina, steampunkish machines with lots of gears and levers, and the latter had old-timey gunpowder rifles that took ages to reload. I don’t know what it is with these games, I generally despise medieval themed worlds with their swords and axes, but for Final Fantasy, it’s the only thing that works for me.

So far, anyway. FFXIII-2 might convince me otherwise. If I could just figure out what the hell is going on in the game.