This is the tale of a girl’s first foray into turn based role playing games.
I had heard from trustworthy sources (friends, Nintendo Power Magazine) that Japanese role playing games like Final Fantasy were super hard, but I was having a great deal of trouble. I fought monsters in the area surrounding the first town for hours, for days, leveling up and purchasing new weapons and spells, but it never seemed like these new items were making a noticeable difference to my fighters. I figured this was the “grind” they were talking about. So I kept going, massacring Mad Ponies and Imps by the hundreds. I was able to defeat Garland and slowly creep my way out to the Marsh Cave before hitting a road block.
I enlisted my friend from school to come help me out. He loaded up my save game and entered into a battle.
“Why are all your guys just punching?”
“What do you mean?”
“My guys swing swords when they attack. Your guys are just punching with their fists.”
Now for some context: I had gotten the game at a garage sale. No instruction manual, no box, just the cartridge. And this was before the Internet, so I couldn’t just look one up. Final Fantasy was my first RPG so it had never occurred to me that I would need to do anything with the weapons and armor to make them work after buying them or finding them. I had been fighting with just my bare hands wearing nothing for protection but the clothes on my back for hours and hours.
Once my friend taught me how to equip the items I had bought, the game became MUCH more fun, as I was now stupidly over-leveled for where I was in the game.
Have you ever had a gaming moment like this one? Comment below and share your shame. We won’t judge you. Everyone was a newb once, after all.