When I first got this awesome game I was 13 years old, just went to grade 6 (my birthday is on the 17th of December). It was on a Sunday morning after church, my parents wanted to go to the hatfield flea market, okay my mom wanted to go and dragged us all along. I was stunned to see a games stall there, after looking through everything I decided on Final Fantasy VIII, I don't know why since I had never heard of the series before then.. It was probably the 5 discs for R120.
A couple years back I dug those old discs up.. I couldn't believe the horrible printing job the oke put on them. How could I ever believe it was the legitimate game! I'l write that one off on youth...
When I finally got round to playing the game it was GLORIOUS! This was my first real experience with an RPG. it was an entire world to explore (3D none the less), it was so detailed I just could not comprehend it all at that stage. The excitement was almost unbearable.
The gang of Squall Quistis, Zell, Sophie, Irvine and Rinoa became like friends to me. After the drudgery of school and homework I could go back to that unnamed world and hangout with the them, for hours on end i would just walk around and explore. I would much rather be in that fictitious world...
This game change the way way I see the world. Whether that is a good thing or not, I wouldn't know, you would have to ask my significant other about that.
The most gripping thing of the game to me was the love story. It made me appreciate romance Somehow that also changed me, for the next 10 odd years I would not be able to make a relationship last more than 2 months. As I am writing this I realise I was envious of the connection Squall and Rinoa had. And saddened by the one Laguna and Julia couldn't have. I was not willing to settle for anything less, I would always sub consciously wish for a relationship like theirs. I thought I found that once, until she broke it off for no apparent reason.
But it was because of this great game that I've been dating the woman of my dreams for the past 2 years! Tonight I'm getting her ring and will ask her to marry me this weekend. Were it not for this game it might never have happened.
I bought a PSP last year just to be able to play FFVIII on the go (or in bed) and I've managed to put up another 60 hours to my total. This entire series has captivated me over the years, I guess it has something to do with the fact that I was born the day the original NES version got released.
These games (FF VIII in particular) aren't just good memories or a funny story. They shaped me into the person I am today, it's a part of my personality.
Thanks for reading!
P.S. I've still got so much to say but I guess I'l start a blog for that, here is how my collection is shaping up so far!