Final Fantasy IV Comparison Update: Intro Updated Again

I’ve been super, super low on free time lately. Maybe like ten minutes every few days for the FFIV stuff. But I managed to snag a few minutes before dinner tonight to update all the pages with some better formatting and some small new tidbits. Then I added a bunch of PSP / GBA / Playstation / DS screenshots and info to the game introduction section. Go check it out!

Thanks to everyone who’s been helping out with screenshots from all the different versions of the game! I probably won’t go into as much detail into all the different versions as I did on this page, but I do plan to point out the super-interesting stuff at least.

Gonna be very busy for the next few weeks, and THEN I gotta deal with a cross-country move, so updates are gonna be slow for a while. But I do keep this stuff in my priority box inside my brain, so there’ll be more updates to come eventually.

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17 Responses to “Final Fantasy IV Comparison Update: Intro Updated Again”

  1. I really, really hate the graphics in the PSP version. While I think it’s great that they actually redrew them for the higher screen resolution, rather than just scaling up the WSC graphics, they just look…wrong.

  2. Mr. Tenda says:

    I have been thinking about replaying FF4 some time to finish it once and for all. I always get up to the Moon dungeon in both the SNES and DS versions but never seem to finish that last area.

    I was wondering, which version(s) would you recommend playing for the most “authentic” experience?

    • Mato says:

      I’ve actually been trying to decide for weeks what version to recommend, but it’s hard without having played them all. I almost want to say the DS version, but I haven’t really played it much AND it’s a very different game than the original, so it’s hard to say if it’s “authentic” or not.

      I’m honestly considering doing a super-simple ROM hack of the SFC version and translating it myself without any fancy hacking or adding anything new to it.

      • The DS version completely imbalances the game. It makes too many random encounters into, essentially, boss fights. The original game (all non-DS versions) had safeguards in place to stop powerful monsters from becoming too powerful, usually by giving them different (more dangerous) behavior when alone. The DS version tosses all of that. It also makes certain enemy skills, like Piercing Laser, way too powerful. It’s just not fun. I did like certain changes, like making the commands that were pointless in the original more useful, giving enemies elemental physical attacks (something the original engine supported but never utilized), adding more status attacks, and things like that, but those changes don’t make up for the bad. I think it looks pretty ugly too, uglier than FF3 for some reason.

        I personally recommend the original SNES version, but the GBA version isn’t bad if you import a European copy, and the PSP version should be even better if you can get past those graphics and the awful text presentation.

        If you decide to do that translation, keep in touch with me. I’m not the best hacker, but I know this game and can probably give you a hand with certain things. (Any chance I could convince you to do Easy Type too? I had worked on the game myself and stopped when someone else showed interest in it since I knew I could never translate any of the dialogue myself. Unfortunately, they seem to have dropped the project, and their translation was very literal, which didn’t thrill me.)

        • I forgot to mention, but the PSX version is a straight port of the original SFC game with some of FF2 and Easy Type’s bug fixes (nothing major) incorporated. The SFC/PSX versions are buggy messes but they “feel” the best to me. The GBA version, by comparison, feels wrong, like all of your input is delayed and the battle engine is struggling to keep pace, plus it’s still a buggy mess, they’re just different bugs.

      • jrronimo says:

        I would *totally* love to play a Mato-translated SFC hack. That’s the sort of translation I only ever want — one that’s faithful to the original text and doesn’t embellish or hack the game up at all.

        Where do I donate to help encourage that? 🙂

        I have the PSP and US SNES versions of the game, but it sounds like neither are really worth playing to get a good sense of the intent of the game’s script… Or maybe the PSP is “good enough”…?

        • Killer Bob says:

          Agree, that would really be a dream come true. The original SFC classic faithfully translated, no more, no less.

    • Vincent Nilton says:

      Play the true version, is the best one!, for ‘Snes’.

  3. Magicxgame says:

    I’m glad I’m not the only one that thinks the PSP version looks like it was cobbled in RPG Maker. That “480 gil” screenshot was especially bad.

  4. Deraj626 says:

    I’m suprised with all the dislike for the PSP graphics, personally, I love them.

  5. Kyosuke says:

    In my experience, the Japanese dev teams prioritize the Japanese version and leave the localizations as just an afterthought. Even if they realize there is a problem, it’s not important to them enough to use any more of the budget to make it nice. So crappy font changes and line breaks being left unfixed–making for bad presentation–is usually a result of that.

    I’ve actually caught this problem in a game I worked on and had all the line breaks fixed.

    • Heidi Poe says:

      Is that why the localization of Shenmue is so famously bad? I hear they spent millions on that game and it does look gorgeous, but the English voice acting is some of the worst I’ve ever heard. I wish they’d set aside some of those millions to make the localization a bit better, personally. Ryo even says, “Um” to get people’s attention. They should have changed that to, “Excuse me.”

      • Kyosuke says:

        Sometimes it’s because the voice acting director is a non-native speaker, or the actors are just given lines that they have to read without having enough context, or there isn’t a dedicated localization director on the project to make sure this stuff doesn’t happen, or all of the above. And yeah, like I said, the Japanese takes priority and the localization is just slapped on usually. I think (or hope) that this has started to change, but it was very much the case in the past.

        • Heidi Poe says:

          It feels like “all of the above” happened to Shenmue. Aquas is playing through the game right now on Radio PSI Sunday nights, so you can see how bad it is for yourself: (if you haven’t already played the game, I mean). But at least they got a Jamaican-like accent to use for the guy that looks stereotypically Jamaican!

      • Kyosuke says:

        Plus, sometimes English voice actors are chosen by Japanese people!

  6. Heidi Poe says:

    With the FFVI GBA version being the first one I played myself, that “goon” and “something awful” line jumped right out at me. It seemed too deliberate to be just a coincidence. It made me chuckle, but it does take away a small amount of integrity from the game.

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