Hi everyone, if you can't tell right off the bat, this blog "Slay the Dragon" is dedicated to RPGs and hopefully I'll keep it up. To start off this week, I recently downloaded Final Fantasy VIII from the Playstation Network.

To kick it off, this game is definitely for people who have the time to read how the magic options and junctioning all works together. It's not quite as simplistic as Final Fantasy VII, and the story isn't quite as amazing, but the real fun lies in the gameplay and visually stunning cutscenes (when I say visually stunning, I mean it's a gargantuan step from the Final Fantasy VII graphics).

This story isn't too exciting, it puts you into a university type setting where you play the role of a student taking his first physical exam so that he can become a mercenary or "SeeD" and get payed by the school or "Garden" to carry out missions and finish them. Along the way you meet up with various different characters which all have personalities, even though the main character does not. You even get to play a second group of people who are unknown to the story and their importance until later. You eventually get thrown into a rather large mission even though you and your team are rookies, and are sent to assassinate someone. That's pretty much the entire set up for this game, so here are my thoughts personally.

I want to say first and foremost that the junctioning system is complex and fun to experiment with. While I ultimately enjoyed Final Fantasy VII more, I think part of it was because I was so much younger and FF VII is much easier to understand for the younger group of people. Before I took a dive back into FF VIII I was a little cautious at first considering that I didn't much care for it when I played it over 10 years ago.

FF VIII feels like it was definitely geared towards an older audience, not that the story is that much more complex, just the gameplay. I began junctioning my spells after I received my third Guardian Force (GF) Ifrit. After messing around with a few different things, I came across junctioning 100 water spells to my strength through use of Ifrit, I instantly got a +20 to my strength and did 3 to 4 times the amount of damage that I was doing before.

Simply to say, the junctioning system allows for some fun experimenting, and you can really murder the crap out of things if you want to, you just have to junction the spells and GFs correctly.

However, with that being said about junctioning, this game makes it difficult to ever become much stronger than the enemies, why is this you ask? Enemies scale with you. I kind of felt like my ability to feel like a God, tearing *** up left and right was taken away from me. I really enjoyed that, but you do have some advantages with the junctioning system in place, I just hope that no one out there is playing thinking that they'll get stronger by just fight monsters. I'm not sure if the bosses scale with you or not though, so that may be something to check out.

I'll have to continue this later, so look for more if you're interested.......