I admit it. I can sometimes be pretty nostalgic.
I grew up on Final Fantasy II for the SNES (which was actually Final Fantasy IV in Japan). I loved the game. The storyline, the gameplay. I was really excited when Final Fantasy III came out (actually Final Fantasy VI in Japan), and I made it about halfway through and then things came up in life. But I really enjoyed the Final Fantasy series.
Years later, I bought a Playstation (the original) on the strength of Castlevania Symphony of the Night and Final Fantasy VII. I didn’t get very far in FF7 (I didn’t connect with the teeny-bopper whiny characters in FF7 as much as I did with the adult characters in FF4 and to a lesser extent in FF6). I beat Castlevania with 200.6% completed not once but twice. 😉
So it was interesting that last week that before I headed out to L.A. to attend to the 20th Anniversary Quantum Leap convention (link, and my blog), I grabbed a Nintendo DS Lite, the new Castlevania, and Final Fantasy IV which I have read about several times over the last year. I’m about 10 hours into Final Fantasy IV and loving it just as much as I did 15 years ago. Maybe it’s nostalgia, or maybe the story does hold up that well after all this time. The CGI cutscenes, occasional voiceover, and 3d-ificiation of all the graphics certainly can’t hurt. Also, the more faithful, less watered-down translation and less censorship of certain story points is much appreciated.
So what does this have to do with EQ2?
When I started playing EQ2, I was somewhat annoyed at how spells got completely different names at each tier. The ranger stealthed backstab attack for instance has 6 different names: Shadow Leap, Shadow Lunge, Crippling Blade, Dire Blade, Ranger’s Blade, and Kunark Blade. The complexity of spell upgrades has led to folks having to consult Wiki every time they buy a spell.
Final Fantasy, as any fan of the series knows, gives each spell just one name. Then each upgrade gets a roman numeral after it. In the case of the ranger stealthed backstab above, it would be Shadow Leap, Shadow Leap II, Shadow Leap III, Shadow Leap IV, Shadow Leap V, and Shadow Leap VI. So I got very used to having Blizzard, Blizzard II, or Cure, Cure II, etc. from playing the FF games.
At this point, EQ2 devs are looking at going to the idea of each spell having one name, and then tier upgrades add a roman numeral afterwards.
I can certainly understand why this issue is coming up now. No doubt they are starting to tackle the level 81-90 spell upgrades and are dreading yet another tier of tedious variations on the existing spell names, some of which already have 6 variations already.
I am coming out in support of the idea of renaming EQ2 spells to have just one proper name for each spell, and then roman numerals afterwards.
I am sure there are some out there who will say this is a dumbing down of the game, but I have always felt that the spell naming conventions in EQ2 were a little awkward. And some of the spell names in Tier 71-80 certainly reeked of desparation. How many Level 70-80 spells had Kunark in the name of the spell itself? Not to mention more and more spells having the same name in one class at one tier, as that of another class at another tier. Very expensive mistakes have been made buying masters for the wrong class/tier this way.
Agree? Disagree? Toss your opinion into the ring here:
Spell Naming Conventions (on EQ2 forums)