Monday, April 25, 2011

Aeris my Goddess

For all the shit people talked and still talk about FF7 (and I was guilty of it too, as a teenager who was totally  into JRPGs before they were cool) its popularity and enduring presence make sense to me. Cloud's story is the story of a dorky loser becoming an admirable man and learning that he doesn't have to live in the shadows of his fantasy hero idols (Sephiroth, Zack) or pine for a Perfect Lover (Aeris) because the girl next door (Tifa) has been there for him all along. Of course that resonates with nerds. It's a game about them.

In either case I also think Sephiroth is a well-executed villain in the way that he seems like he's always one step ahead of the party and so dangerous that you're not sure you want to catch up to him, and when you finally do something terrible happens. And I think there's a theme of reconciliation with one's own self and dreams that connects rather slyly to the game's other theme of reconciliation with nature and the earth.

A lot of the game is terrible, almost all of its spinoffs are ridiculous over the top garbage, and it's aged poorly to boot. But I think I understand why it struck such a chord with so many people, and I don't think it's a stupid game at all.

Ironically, most of the people who still love it to death and draw pictures of it and write fanfiction about it completely missed most of what I was talking about.

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