Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Final Fantasy VII Remake, Part 6 - Chocobo King

Wall Market continues with Cloud x Boco: Friendship is Magic.



Cue up the hourlong Wall Market remix video that I had to make because the developers inexplicably changed the music in Wall Market! I still can hardly believe they did that.

With Aerith dealing with dress-making, Cloud is left to roam the streets getting into sidequests. There are a lot of 'em in this game, but most are short and inoffensive. Wall Market's sidequests tend to directly affect what kind of dress Cloud gets during The Great Corneo Dress-Up.

That's right kids, we're meeting Jules for some BURNING THIGHS.

The next step is the gym minigame, which is actually an import from the original game. It's a little different this time.

Cloud must get past several BIG AMERICAN BEEFY BOIS before he can challenge Jules.

The squats minigame is very similar to how it was in the original, though now you at least have prompts onscreen to make it a bit less difficult.

At first I'm terrible at it, and sustain some losses. Good news is, you can repeat it until you win. I believe in the original you only had one shot at it, then would get an item depending on how you did. Here, you HAVE to win, which also means getting more shots until you get it right.

After defeating Ronnie, here's the second foe. He's trying to be all intimidating and Cloud is like "ok"

Finally, the big boss, the SULTAN OF SQUATS, Jules. This is easily the toughest match of the minigame, requiring some strong timing.

I tied several times. You're almost kinda reliant on the CPU to mess up for this match, because even if you perform very well there's a distinct possibility of tying.

After numerous losses and ties, I managed to get out to an early lead, and the CPU fumbled a little more than usual, which led to...

...a HUGE win. An absolute drubbing.

In the original game, Jules was a cross-dresser. ...and wasn't named Jules yet. Not sure if he's still supposed to be a cross-dresser, or what the deal is.

Victory gets you the Champion Belt, which would be a pretty good pro wrestling title belt. Can't go wrong with an eagle on a championship. It's also one of the game's better accessories.

 We get a letter from a mystery character. Who is the Guardian Angel of the Slums? Whoever they are, they rob from the rich and give to the poor. That's right.

 Also looked up what happens when you get the expensive massage from Madam M. It's Spicy.

Two women? I don't think Cloud even knows how to handle one.

Outside is this couple apparently having an argument. It looks like the guy is being belligerent and the woman is freaked-out. In actuality they're just talking about finding a tour guide to get the most out of Wall Market. That was kind of weird, but NPC animations aren't a strong point of this game.

We revisit the laconic, sloth-like materia vendor, who is what would happen if Orange Cassidy fused with Leon the Professional.

Let's not gloss over that he's talking about polishing Cloud's orbs, really makin' 'em sparkle.

Return to the arena, and you can defend your title as arena champion by fighting more battles. It's cool that now they're challengers.

I also won the difficult bonus fight in the arena. That's about it for sidequests, back to Sam.

He's got some sage advice for Cloud: Don't take Aerith for granted. Like Jessie said earlier, there's such a thing as playing too hard to get.

"idc" says Cloud while looking at his phone. 

At this point, Aerith's dress is finished, so Cloud heads to meet up with her. Johnny just sorta follows him around. Turns out Cloud doesn't care about guys being his friend either!

What follows...is a magical moment. Cloud's jaw drops as he bears witness to The New Aerith.

A sight so gorgeous, even opioid-infused, slightly-dazed Cloud has no choice but to react.

…Jesus, Aerith.

It's worth noting that there are fireworks going off in the background...and inside of Cloud's soul.

It's worth taking a look at this scene in motion. There are three possible dresses she can get, depending on your earlier actions. Somehow mine was the best, despite that I got the Poor Man's Massage.

I love her calm demeanor here. "Just bein' mind-bogglingly gorgeous, no big."

Aerith gives us some news: Andrea Rhodea wants to meet him, and thinks he TOO has potential for gorgeousness. This could be our ticket into Don Corneo's estate. Can Cloud become Wall Market's prettiest princess, or will Aerith retain the championship?

"I guess."

Aerith doesn't even know Tifa yet outside of "she's Cloud's friend" and is way more jazzed about saving her than Cloud is. Aerith is such a thoughtful keeper of a person.

Back to the Honeybee Inn, I take some time to snoop around. Here, various honeybee-women "dance" for the delight of onlooking guys.

You can look through keyholes, just like the original game. While the rooms are different and have different things going on (mostly) it's still just as weird.

In one room, Palmer of Shinra is chasing a bee-woman in circles. I believe this is the first time you actually see him in the game.

Looks like Cloud is going to take part in Andrea Rhodea's rock-opera, which means...

...he must practice his rhythm via Dance Minigame. If only he wasn't so wooden and awkward. At least the music is great here.

Cloud may not be a very good dancer, but he at least tries, to the delight of his bee-women dance tutors. Perhaps now he is ready. Ready...for the rock opera. Today, Cloud goes from drab to FAB.

This part is absolutely nutso, and probably the most memorable thing added to this entire remake. I can't do it justice with shots, so if you somehow haven't seen it already...

...yep, absolutely insane to see this in a video game. It's quintessential Square, though. They've always liked these kinds of mega-productions, starting with the opera in FFVI. This one is particularly noteworthy and important because of what it represents in terms of letting people know that it's okay to be who they are and so forth. It'll probably save somebody's life somewhere, which isn't hyperbole. Besides that, it's just a really well-done scene.

I love how excited Aerith is during all of this. She absolutely makes this game. She also nearly has an orgasm when Cloud appears dressed as a woman.

I was expecting him to look a bit more feminine than just "Cloud in a dress" and he's still much taller than any of the women around him, but it doesn't stop all of the local men from thinking he's now a hot chick and catcalling him like crazy.

I get to play as Aerith again for another glorious 10 seconds of screentime while she waits for Cloud to emerge post-opera, and seize the moment to take just the right screenshot of her.

Seriously, can I play an entire game as Aerith, in this outfit? Is that something we can do for Final Fantasy 16, Square-Enix?

The hulking Cloud finally re-appears. Aerith is blown away by how beautiful he looks, and Cloud is all "I know, nailed it, moving on"

Now that we're two hot chix...we can get into the sex dungeon of Don Corneo.

Wait, why did we want to do that again?

Getting a perfect score during Andrea's dance opera gets you a trophy and a key item that might do something later. That's right, there's a minigame hidden in there. It's a bit difficult to hit all of the prompts, but it's doable after a few tries.

Here's the key item in question. Not sure what it does yet.

Meanwhile, random background people are in awe of Cloud's beauty.

At this point I, ya know, I got tired of Cloud's no-selling of Aerith and took matters into my own hands:

I cued up the battle remix from the dance minigame on the nearest jukebox and had Cloud dance with Aerith. By God, if Cloud isn't going to treat her like a person I WILL MAKE HIM.

As I continue my march to Corneo's mansion, various random men fall in love with Cloud. You heartbreaker you!

Even Jules is impressed by all of this, and you get the feeling he's seen everything.

Cloud talks to that weirdo Chadley, who apparently gets his first boner. He then runs back to Shinra HQ to study this strange new hormonal reaction.

In any case, time to head to the mansion and rescue...

...Tifa?

…..nope, it's actually knock-out gas. Well, this just got dark!

AH! JESUS!

In the original game, you could choose whether to check on Tifa or Aerith first after you all woke up in the dungeon. In this one, Tifa wakes you up, and then you just go talk to Aerith. In other news, Tifa is SMOKIN'.

"Yes, nailed it, moving on" she says.

Cloud actually shows mild concern for Aerith. It's almost imperceptible, but it's more than anyone else gets.

Tifa meets Aerith, and they instantly have more chemistry than either of them ever have with Cloud. Can we call an audible and have them be a couple in the sequels instead?


2 comments:

  1. I love that championship belt!

    It's funny how the game sometimes gives you control of another character for just a few seconds.

    I did fine on the squats, which surprised me after the button prompts vanished. Just kept pressing the buttons in order quickly and had no trouble. The dance mini-game was another matter entirely. Everything changes when you've got three dimensional angles to try and guess when the prompt "counts", and sometimes they're blocked from view.

    Ha, I didn't think to check with that weirdo Chadley.

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