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[personal profile] spindizzy
So I finished the game! I am still turning the ending over in my head, but here is initial thoughtsI think - and please believe me when I say that I never thought I'd hear myself say this about anything - that it needed to crib more from FFXIII.

HEAR ME OUT, OKAY.

(Cutting for spoilers RIGHT through the game and Chapter 13 Verse 2 and also for "Nah, mate, I can totally fix this, my uncle's a mechanic game designer.")

Okay, so I have Many Opinions on the flaws in FFXIII, but one of the things I think it did RIGHT was when it split the party up so you got to see more of the story and get more character depth. I think maybe FFXV needed to do that in the main game, not just as DLC, and also to do that with a bigger cast.

Like, I know that they explicitly wanted to make this a roadtrip game, but I just... I think that a lot of the game's problems with unclear storytelling, everyone who isn't Noctis/Prompto/Ardyn failing the sexy lamp test, the pacing and tone completely flipping with no build-up, could probably have been solved if they folded the DLC imto the main game and made Lunafreya and Rayvus into playable characters. Maybe Iris and Aranea as well, if they wanted to give them actual plotlines, because that would at least even up the gender stuff a little.

(I CAN'T BELIEVE THEY GAVE ME DEMONSLAYER IRIS AND NEVER SHOWED IT TO ME WHAT IS THIS FUCKING BULLSHIT, WHY IS GLADIO GETTING DLC WHEN HIS SISTER SPENT TEN YEARS SLAYING MONSTERS AND WE COULD BE PLAYING THAT.)

Like, both Rayvus and Aranea get character arcs and growth (which is more than can be said for Gladio or Ignis, even though I love Ignis), and we see the start and the end, but not really the stuff in the middle. Getting to play as them would give those decisions emotional weight! And let you see the world going to shit as it happens rather than Noctis suddenly looking up and going "ÖH, while I was fishing things got terrible." And Lunafreya would maybe get some character apart from "Too good, too pure, in love with Noctis!"

I am just really in favour of the plot being a consistent through-thread of the game, okay, because OTHER PEOPLE ARE DOING THE PLOT AND HAVING CHARACTER ARCS, but because the focus is on Noctis we don't get to see them. He gets told "Ÿou need to go here and do this" but the explanation is... Lacking.

... The downside of this is that it would probably skew the pacing a bit?Like, if you got, say, through to chapter two of the game as the lads on a roadtrip, then the fall of Crown City, then you get Iris escaping from Crown City (because Lunafreya's angle on this is in Kingsglaive) - it's going to make the peaceful "Bimble around the countryside doing whatever" feel really out of place. But it would probably make the tone of the game feel more consistent with a) the prequel film, and b) the last half of the game.

(Lex pointed out while I was having this rant in the car that the problem might be that they were trying to respond to criticisms of FFXIII as a linear corrider with too many cutscenes and overcorrected, and... Yeah, I think they said that in an interview, didn't they?)

But yes, I am picturing Lunafreya getting a thread of trying to avoid Imperials/save the world/politics/convince angry gods to listen to her, Iris dodging monsters and Imperials and growing into The Demonslayer by, IDK, joining the resistance she's blatantly part of, Rayvus going from "Must slay the Lucis line to avenge my mother/save my sister" (which I BELIEVE is his motivation from Kingsglaive but sure isn't mentioned in the game until chapter thirteen?) to "Must support the True King," Aranaea going from "Eh, they pay me" to "Nope, we're helping refugees now." IT WOULD HAVE FLESHED OUT SO MUCH OF THE GAME AND MADE IT ALL FEEL SO MUCH MORE CONSISTENT. *slams fist into floor*
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