FFVII: My cousin Vinny

Remember how I complained about having too large of a party in last week’s post? (this is addressed to all two of you who read it) Well, now I have another character: Vincent Valentine.

Vincent is an “optional” character, meaning you don’t automatically get him and he is not required to beat the game. But, he is worth finding, as he is interesting.

My first reaction after he joined the party? “Aw man…now I have to rearrange all my materia again.” Again, this is the blessing and the curse of Final Fantasy VII. You can super-customize your party, but it takes you ten minutes to set everything up first. It is very tiring.

Some folks think Vincent is a vampire, due to his outfit and his ability to “fly”…and being found in a coffin. Meh. I don’t think he is a vampire. It is obvious he has some kind of super-natural background, though.

However, he does have the ability to change into different types of monsters due to his various Limit Breaks. It looks neat, but I must confess: I hate Vincent’s limit breaks.

Whenever he transforms, I lose control of him for awhile. That sucks. It sucks even more when he pulls out an elemental based attack an enemy is immune to, or happens to absorb for health.

I have a vivid memory of that happening when I first played through the game as a teen. I was in a big battle, and having not used Vincent’s Limit Breaks too often, I did not know what I was getting myself into.

Vincent changed, and I lost control of him. I ended up losing control of the battle, as he continued to heal the enemy.

The problem is, I want to use Vincent, as I like his long range weapon attacks: I can give him some materia and keep him in the back row, which grants him extra defense. Additionally, one of his weapons has amazing accuracy when combined with the Deathblow command, which doubles his damage (give or take) with each shot.

I’m realizing the key here is to just figure out which characters I like using and only use those. I have this odd sense of guilt by not using some of the other characters that much, which is silly.

Yuffie is becoming a favorite however. She seems to have the best luck using the Steal command. I was able to steal four Gold Armlets from dragons on Mt. Nibel. Not bad.

Story-wise, things are once again shifting toward the weird. I’m back in Cloud’s hometown, which he has vivid memories of being burned to the ground—yet nothing looks out of place. And there all a bunch of mumbling figures in dark cloaks. They have numbers on their arms, like Sephiroth.

Are they failed experiments to create more super soldiers? Perhaps. Vincent implies that Sephiroth is only around five years old, and was birthed by a human mother after being created in a lab using cells from an alien. Or something. Whatever.

So, now the game is getting into genetic engineering, cloning and combing human and alien (or something) DNA. Swell. (Maybe Jenova, the source of the cells used for Sephiroth, is a Great Old One or something. Sure. Why not?)

I visited the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago last month, and they had an exhibit on cloning with real, live cloned mice. It was not unlike how Sephiroth was created (at least based on what I’ve pieced together in the game): an egg was fertilized and placed into surrogate mother to be carried to term.

Except, when these mice are born, they don’t go on a rampage and try to destroy the planet.

At least not yet. Remind me to load up on some cheese.

Where you at?

Disc: 1

Cloud’s Level: 37

Location: Inside Mt. Nibel (just defeated the Materia Keeper)

Timer: 30:04

Read Gavin Craig’s week 6 post

Read Andrew Simone’s week 6 post

Archive of all Gamers’ Club posts

5 Responses to “FFVII: My cousin Vinny”
  1. Gavin Craig says:

    I’ve had the worst luck with stealing. No Atomic Scissors. Not a single gold armlet. I’ve basically given up on it.

    And I’m dying for more story! Sephiroth only five years old? Holy crap. Also, I know enough about pieces of Cloud’s background that I’m willing to go with the holes in his memory, but I’m hoping that there’s some more explanation of Tifa coming. If she knows that Cloud’s memories don’t add up, why is she being quiet about it?

    • Daniel says:

      If you can boost a player’s Luck and Dexterity stats, I think that helps your stealing success rate.

      I could be wrong about Sephiroth’s age, but that’s how I took Vincent’s cryptic information–it certainly would not be out of the question (look at Attack of the Clones or even Bladerunner for “young” adult characters).

      I’m hoping to get more story soon too–I just got to the Temple of the Ancients. I’m closing in on the end of Disc 1.

      • Gavin Craig says:

        Yeah, I don’t know that Vincent is right, but I was reading his comments the same way. There’s a lot of doubt at this point in the game, and that’s kind of a cool thing–and something that you’d miss a part of if you don’t pick up Vincent.

    • Gavin, when the holes in Cloud’s memory are pieced back together, IMHO, it beats the insanity of seeing the end of disk one for the first time. Just you wait.

      • Gavin Craig says:

        Yeah, I’m kind of counting on it. After all, it’s hard to be a Final Fantasy fan and not know what happens at the end of disc 1, even if you’ve never actually played the game. :-)

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