Interlude: Review and Analysis of CH1
Heya everyone, I'm here to input my thoughts and impressions of what it is to me the wildest and well-craft mod on the Final Fantasy mod in this forum (Before you ask: BNW doesn't count because I made clear the fact that at this point, BNW it's the oficial FFVI release and vanilla/advance versions are just some kind of watered down version of it)
Let's start with some words from the very creator of this mod:
"The idea I had with the creation of this mod was because the two things that every mod out there doesn't do so well is monsters and bosses"
Since the start of FFT modding waaaaay back at 2005, the one objective every person who set aim to change this humble gem of the psx was the same: Enhance all the mechanics and fix bugs/glitches/problems with the original game to make the experience more enjoyable. Several mods and patches were made across the years (FFT Tournament and 1.3 being the most prominent out there), but on June 6th of 2015, the first female modder ever since the foundations of ID share a modified FFT mod with the name "Monster Tactics", shaking the foundations of the common knowledge about FFT modding in general.
"A mod about monsters?"
"That's so crazy"
"It must be a joke or something"
But it wasn't: As the days passes and new versions become available, the mod was seen as less of a joke and more as an stand-alone game: 1.3 was on hot wheels until mid 2016, but Monster Tactics keep growing into the mod that I would come back every three months or so to have some fun (and even if that wasn't a good enough reason, a really good updates schedule from Emmy will always make sure to lure you into play to try out those new changes)
Now with the real juice of the game:
"If you had only a word to describe you mod, what would be?"
MT does make sure to establish himself as a standalone mod out there: New and completely reliable monsters, revamped jobs and brand new maps ensure that the experience you will get of it will completely differ from any other mod out there. The only problem with playing this mod it's the fact that at first everyone will expect a FFT experience and that's just a wrong assumption: Monster Tactics can be grabbed, put into stream, and could perfectly pass as some kind of weird cousin of FFT.
Going into the gameplay (the part I'm pretty sure attracts the 80% of players out there) I must say...............It's good enough: Monsters having differents reactions/innates/Inmunities/weakness between families make sure that you always have a favorite setup to play with while the game tries his best to not punish you for playing one way or another (something I always complain about 1.3). My only call-out would be that sometimes monsters seems a little too much overpowered since they can basically do almost everything while have nice perks that makes them more appealing that even most of human jobs in the regular game.
Putting my lens on CH1, I can clearly discern his concept: It's a tutorial to get accustom to this crazy alternate reality to the old and classic game from 1997, which works fine to me because I ended up this chapter fighting a flying one eyed monster that was my former companion (my HUMAN companion now that we're at it). The story while in general unchanged, does make sure to establish the monster as the primary moving force in the world of Ivalice: They can live in cities, have works like us, hell they even hold important charges and that's quite bizarre yet awesome since I can already tell by experience that an chocobo that can attack, run and think by himself it's a huge asset to an army for example.
Going back into the gameplay, new skills means new situations to deal with, and MT doesn't come short to show how easily can change the dynamic per battle: In one you can see yourself tanking all the hits and avoid splinting up your party members since that would otherwise being destroyed and impossible to revive and being forced into a loop of revive units until death comes eventually, and the next you can find yourself running like a mad dog to kill all the enemies to avoid unpleasant situation that can rend the encounter imposible to beat.
With this premise explained, here it is the averages from all kind of players about CH1 difficulty:
2.3/10 (First timer)
1.4/10 (Normal Player)
1/10 (2nd Playthough)
Ch 1 Average: 2.1
Something to make crystal clear: Even thought several playthoughts can shatter the game's difficulty, a good/patient new player can achieve the same results as me, and the same can be said about veterans getting stuck on some parts because of how the RNG works at times, so I can't get mad at the game getting unfair at times (althought half of them were my fault, but details).
Since this is a tutorial, you will get what you expect: battles with a clear objective and ways to procede on it, a pretty balanced party to get accustomed, a lot of patterns and AI quirks to learn for the future and finally, a real challenge from the game. My only complaint would be that at times it's fells......slow, but that's something superficial since I will eat my words as soon CH2 becomes a thing.
Without anything else to say, I bid my farewell for now: This is my first time doing this so I kinda expecting several errors here and there so make me aware of them if you can. Thank you so much for reading this, I hope you guys are enjoying this and if you have any suggestions please let me know of them.
EDIT: CH2 starts at monday