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  -Part 1 :: [10.29.04]
  -Part 2 :: [01.29.05]
  -Part 3 :: [03.22.05]
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"A tall, blond man in a clown outfit sweeps past Rikku and Paine, and then past Yuna. There are several slow-mo shots of the guy as he passes Yuna, so we can see 1) that he has a sexy eyepatch and 2) that Yuna, from the 'huh, huh, purty' look on her face, has no problem with blond guys in ridiculous clothing. We already knew this, but still."
     -Sam, Final Fantasy X-2 Part 4

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Final Fantasy VI : Part 3
By Sam
Posted 03.22.05
Pg. 1 : 2 : 3 : 4
After what feels like an eternity of Kyan and his last remaining Turbanite shaking their heads in despair over the fallen monarch, Kyan decides they should look for any survivors in the castle. Like, you know, HIS GODDAMN FAMILY. The Turbanite runs out, leaving Kyan alone to explore every nook and cranny of the throne room desperately and immediately search for his wife. Dawdle, dawdle, hem and haw, who-cares-about-the-wife-he's-freaking-gay slowcakes. Finally, Kyan enters the room on the right of the throne room to check on his wife and child. Gee, hope they didn't drink the water in the five hours it took him to get here.

Once in the room, Kyan freaks and scrambles to his wife, as if to make a big show of concern. "Elayne! Elayne! Wake up!" he cries with an air of overacting. Sure enough, Mrs. Beardly Garamonde does not stir from her prone position on the floor. Kyan also sees that his son is still an unmoving lump in the double bed against the wall. "Owain...NOT YOU TOO! can't BOTH leave me!" Kyan inspects his son's body, only for the kid to flop out of the bed onto the floor. I'm going to Hell for thinking so, but that? Great physical sprite comedy.

Kyan stammers incoherently for a few seconds, shocked that his whole straight cover has been blown in ten seconds of poisonous poisoning. "We can't forgive this!" he wails. "The Empire must pay!" With that he leaves the room, noticeably not bothering to pick up the corpses of his family so they're not crumpled unceremoniously on the stone floor. Uh, I mean, he's obviously so deranged with grief that he's not thinking clearly. For he must avenge his beloved wife and the fruit of his heterosexual loins! That must be it.

A beat later Kyan is at the Imperial Camp, taking on any soldier he can get his hands on. Like that. It just so happens that Guile is walking by and he notices this strange gay fellow sparring with the Empire. Curious, he approaches to see what's up. Unfortunately, he decides to come at Kyan from the right, where Kyan's enemies are, and Kyan knocks him on his ripply ass. "Eeoooa!" he screams passionately at Guile. That's my interpretation of "Eeoooa," anyway. "Be you friend or enemy!?" Guile grouses at me that he didn't mean to get in the way of the fighting. Well, excuse me, buddy. This time he speaks to Kyan from a less hostile angle, and Kyan welcomes his assistance in the fight, noting in the back of his mind to "thank" this studly stranger later. In the battle itself Kyan and Flaffy have to do all the work, because I couldn't get the button-mash combo for Aura Bolt right to save my life Guile doesn't feel like contributing on his turn. As soon as the battle is over, Kyan goes nuts and runs spastically to a new group of enemy soldiers, who become enemy corpses in short order. "Urgh!!!" Kyan screams at no one. "Who released this poison?" I don't necessarily think he's faking his insane grieving rage, here. I just think it's highly convenient that the same poison that killed his beloved wife and son also killed his sugar daddy King and all his Turbanite boy-toys. This way he doesn't have to fake it.

Guile, Flaffy and Kyan soon realize that to get out of this mess they're going to have to work together. Round three of the cannon fodder Imperials cut down with prejudice, our boys finally have a spare moment to make with the introductions. Kyan says to Guile, "Thank you, kind sir!" And Guile replies, "Allow me to thank you! I am GUILE, from [Figayro]! Now, let's scram!" I would say that it's not like Guile and Flaffy really needed Kyan just now, and probably could have dealt with escaping on their own, but considering how inept I am at Guile's Blitzes, I probably do need Kyan. Plus, he's fabulous. Welcome aboard, Kyan.

"But what of my home, my friends?" Uh...they're all dead. I somehow doubt that's going to change. Guile avoids putting it this way, so as not to upset his fragile new friend, but says they really should get out of there before they're caught again. Furthermore, Guile has a great idea, if Kyan will just follow him. Kyan bristles excitedly--maybe a private tent for two? And Flaffy can keep watch outside?

...This is bad?

Actually, Guile leads the group to two Magitek Armors sitting unmanned and unguarded nearby. Kyan has no knowledge of these mechanical thingies, but Guile tells him, "Relax. Just climb in!" Hee. Meanwhile, Flaffy disappears offscreen, presumably to find the person responsible for the My Head Must Be Harder Than This Wall Offensive and beat him within an inch of his life. I mean, really. They had Magitek Armors sitting around unused, but decided their best chance of taking Doma was head-butting and poisoning the frelling water supply? What moron is approving all this?

Fanwank #2: Why not use the Magitek Armors?
Using Magiteks would have been effective and would have made sense. Obviously out of the question.
Without the poison, we would have been denied the comedy drama of Kyan's wife and kid dropping dead as soon as Kyan touched them.
Their extension cords weren't long enough to reach Doma. /bad Evangelion joke
If they used the Magiteks to attack Doma, they wouldn't be here for Kyan and Guile to escape! Duh!


Once Kyan is in his, he wails, "Sir GUILE! How might these abominations be manipulated?" Guile whines back, "I'm getting sick of this! Thou art such a pain in the...!" Cleverly skipping the swear, he adds, "Confound it all! I'm starting to talk like you!" Then he explains how to control the Magitek, which he could have just done from the start without throwing a hissyfit. Shut up, Guile. Guile jumps in his Magitek, and waits patiently as Kyan spins his gleefully in a circle a few times. "Sir GUILE!! It is I who is in your debt!" Sigh. Shut ups all around.

Some Imperial soldier just now notices what these two are doing, but it seems Kyan has lost control of his Magitek. He runs over that guy and two more in the process before stopping in front of Flaffy, in his own Magitek. The threesome figures to use these mechanical whosawhatsits to bust out of here. Flaffy, in control because Kyan and Guile are annoying me, tries to exit on the Doma side. "Nothing but poison this way!" Guile warns, sending me a clear message that going back toward Doma is not an option right now. Three battles against other Magiteks later, Guile leaps from his contraption and asks how to get to Narshe from here. "Only one route," Kyan answers, "through the forest to the south." And simple as that, they've escaped the camp. Now all we have to do is find this forest to the south! How hard can that be?

Before I get to bitching, I'd like to confess that this imminent problem is 99 percent due to my own stupidity and sudden bad memory. I had this exact same experience the first time I played the game, and somehow this time around did not remember, "Hey, you've gone through this before and now you should know the right way to go." Mental block, perhaps? I don't know.

To the point, I spend the next twenty minutes wandering around the world map, trying to find access to this elusive forest to the south. Directly south of the camp there is only shoreline. But where else to go? I figure maybe I'm supposed to backtrack up past the mountain range I passed on the way here and then go south down the other side. To my immense displeasure and controller-throwing, I am confronted with a dead end. The only other route is to return to the camp and pass through it to go back to Doma, a route certainly not open to me. I mean, how stupid would it be to have to escape the Imperials and then walk right back past them as if nothing had happened?

As all of you already know, I'm sure, this is exactly what I'm supposed to do. Just to make the whole thing even more illogical and frustrating than it already is, the boys don't even have to enter the camp. No, they walk right over it on the world map, like it's just a spare spot of desert. Of course, I should feel totally stupid for not realizing this. Clearly, it makes perfect sense to escape a place and then immediately return there!

As if I don't feel dumb enough right now, five seconds before the gang reaches the forest, after fighting a goddamn bunny rabbit eating cabbage, Flaffy says to his mates, "My job here's over. I've earned my fee!" And he fucking takes off. The smart and easy thing to do at this point would be to reset the game, and then proceed as quickly as possible to the forest, now that I know where it is. Well, it would be smart and easy, if I'd saved since...well, since I turned the fucking game on.


I hate myself.

So Guile and Kyan, now sadly lacking in fabulous blue ninjas and buff guard dogs, reach their destination, the Phantom Forest, south of Doma. And a place called "Phantom Forest" sure sounds like a place I'd like to have a ninja and dog handy. Dammit. Dammit dammit dammit. Adding to the general "fuck this fucking game for fucks" feeling I have right now, the Phantom Forest is a maze dungeon, where if you take a wrong turn you end up back at the beginning. But while I didn't remember how the hell to get here, I do remember how to get through here, and so Guile and Kyan soon escape the really-not-that-horrible forest, only to come upon...

A train station. A really freaking spooky train station. "A train's there!?" Kyan duhs, seeing as there's a giant train waiting two feet away from them. "But I thought Doma's railway had been destroyed...?" I would think Kyan would know for a fact whether or not Doma's railway had been destroyed, and I would also think he would know if there was a stop on the railway going through Jittery Junction here. Guile thinks there may be "survivors" on the train, so they should hop aboard and look around. Ooh, awesome idea. I'm sure nothing bad will happen.

As soon as Guile steps foot on the train, Kyan pops his eyes out of their sockets and cries, "Sir GUILE!" About eighty times. Jesus, just kiss him already. Guile assures his excitable companion that everything is fine, and despite his own instincts and common sense Kyan follows him. Okay, I just saw the new Ring movie. You know how the lady in those movies is a total Shion-esque retard? And how she does completely stupid things that she knows will get her in trouble without even thinking about it? And how even her kid thinks she's dumb beyond belief? Well, right now, Guile is that lady. But he'll only have to deal with ghosts, rather than a crazy waterlogged dead girl who looks like Gollum.

Inside the train car, Guile looks around while Kyan runs in after him. "Let me off! This train's haunted!" he says to Guile, begging the question of why he got on the train in the first place. Because he can't stand being more than two inches away from his new man, that's why. Suddenly, and I didn't see this coming at all, Guile and Kyan hear the train's whistle blow and feel a shudder as their car starts to move. Both of them agree they'd best jump off before it's too late. But oh noes! The exit door is locked, giving them no means of escape! Even though they're both in-shape dudes and could easily bust down the door and jump before the train gets up to full steam. But this plan would require at least one of them to not be fucking stupid, so no go.


Okay, so now they're stuck on this train. What the hell is it, anyway? "This is the Phantom Train..." Kyan explains. "It carries the departed to...the other side." And Kyan knew this all along, and still came to the Phantom Forest, and let Guile get on the train, and even then decided to climb aboard himself? ...I give up. Either Kyan is so dumb he shouldn't be allowed to dress himself in the morning, or he's a genius with a staggering intellect out of my realm of understanding. Whatever the case, Guile decides they're not ready to die yet and that they should head for the engine room and stop the train.

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