Tower of the Stars

It’s been so long since I last played Chrono Cross that I don’t even remember what scene this is from in the game, but this great piece of BGM reminds me of a certain episode of Haibane-Renmei. (If you’ve seen that series, you know the one.) The ominous chords and tolling bell give this piece so much atmosphere.

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The Summoner’s Daughter

official game art

Rikku may be my favorite from Final Fantasy X, but Yuna is pretty good, too. When I started my replay of the game late last year with the PS3 HD remaster, I noticed that Yuna’s eyes are two different colors, and I can’t remember if I noticed that the first time I played it on the original PS2 version. The increased clarity of the PS3 version is what made me notice her eyes this time around.

I think I may have liked Final Fantasy X a bit more if Yuna was the lead rather than Tidus. Her story is compelling enough to drive the narrative, which it kind of already does but from an outside perspective. Maybe that’s why I liked FFX-2 more? (Despite that game ruining Rikku for me…)

Genki Rikku

Ever since the Final Fantasy series went to 3D character models, voice acting, and fully animated cutscenes, I often find that the cute and bubbly characters become favorites of mine, even if they aren’t my top favorite from that particular game. In FFVII it was Yuffie, in FFVIII it’s Selphie. FFXII has Penelo, and FFXIII has Vanille. FFIX didn’t really have one that I can remember, but Eiko was just super cute.

At the moment, I’m in the middle of a replay of Final Fantasy X, which I have only played once before, but I remembered it being my least favorite of all the Final Fantasys I’ve completed. It’s actually faring better on this replay, though I still loathe blitzball and think the exposition is drawn out way too much (with too many cutscenes to boot), making the first 20-25 hours an absolute chore to get through. Thankfully I’ve just gotten past all that again.

Speaking of too much exposition, I think this post falls into that category as well, amusingly enough, since the point of all this is really just to say that Rikku is my favorite character in Final Fantasy X. Since she’s the last to join the party, that’s sort of my reward for getting through all the tedium before her main appearance. (Also, for what it’s worth, I prefer her game engine rendering over her FMV rendering.)

(minor spoilers in the video clip below, if you haven’t played the game yet.)

Well, that’s an awkward thumbnail for this video clip

I also only recently found out that for the english dub, she was voiced by none other than (a much younger) Tara Strong. On this replay, her voice sounded familiar, but I couldn’t place it. I didn’t know who she was the first time I played FFX, but since then Tara has voiced some of my favorite animated characters, including Raven (Teen Titans), Unikitty (Unikitty TV series), and most notably Twilight Sparkle (My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic).

My only disappoinment is that I seem to remember Rikku going from my favorite character in FFX to least favorite in FFX-2, since the dubbing direction went too far with her personality in that game and she was no longer cute and bubbly but super annoying instead. We’ll see how that replay fares once I get to it in a few months…