You said one way to see where a series goes wrong is to imagine it today and see where it starts to deviate from the core. Then I said you don't need to. You don't need those lenses to see it. FF13 is still worse than FF4 if you judge 'em by the time they're released. Am I'm disingenuous? What was my point? Don't you agree if you imagine enough, anything can be anything. I was not trying to correct you.
Ah ok. I just misunderstood you then. I thought it looked more like you were arguing the other way around.
I'm not sure I agree totally on FF4 being a better game in general, by todays standards, compared to 13 though.
The thing most people are apt to forget, is that if you played the original FF's in their original forms, their writing was generally sh*t(sorry to say).
Most people tend to lean on gameplay and story when they argue that older games were better, but even if thematically speaking FF4 was pretty good, like most nes/snes games, the dialogue which carried the story wasn't fleshed out in any way to make the characters and story truly alive, by any other media standard(books, movies etc).
After all, there was no tradition for quality writing in games back then(All your base are belong to us)
Older FF games required the player to get much more involved creatively to make the game come alive. Newer games, with their large amounts of dialogue, graphics and sound, don't need that.
Most people forget this though, because when we replay the old FF games, we still play off of the experience we got when we got creative with the games the first time.
The writing of FF games wasn't properly fleshed out until FF6 - Which leaves gameplay - And in terms of gameplay and content, it's still a Snes game, so it leaves a lot to be desired by todays standard.
This is the reason why I don't accept the argument that FF13 is an alround bad game - It isn't. It's an ok/good game. It's just a large step backwards as an FF-game in all departments except presentation.
I would disagree with you if you state FF started to change with FF10. Again: FF have always re-invented itself, and you can't count spinoffs like FF tactics in the picture.
Care to state why? I provided pretty good examples of how little change actually happens in FF games up until 10, in terms of actual gameplay, pace, and build. As I said, the change is usually limited to battle-mechanics, magic-mechanics and the setting.
Why can't I count Tactics though? Tactics is an excellent example of what "reimagining" actually means. FF Tactics is a reimagining because it is totally different. To refer to FF4 as compared to FF3, as a "reimagining" is a complete abuse of the term.
In any case, I agree with the rest. It just seemed to me, by your post, that you were arguing the other way around.
As for all the opinion vs fact talk:
Yeah, all media, and standard of judgement is subjective at the end of the day. We all know this. It's beside the point.
Nobody here seems to actually be saying that FF13 is objectively a bad game in some absurd universal sense.
People are simply pointing out, that by the standards of earlier titles, and by the standard used when people judged those titles to be quality games, FF13 is not good.
Yes, the standards of video-gaming are arbitrarily set, but they are set all the same.
If you don't agree with them, good for you, but that doesn't really make any difference. For instance, I have my beef with the standard from which most people judge fighting games, but I know I'm a minority in that respect, and take that into account when raising my opinion.
When I say "I think Battle Arena Toshinded 3 is the best fighter ever", I know that isn't the case by the standards that most people judge fighters by - So, if somebody points out that Street Fighter 3 Alpha has better balance, I have to agree, because it's true.
Similarly, the point remains that FF13 us step backwards in terms of content, and story. That is not an opinion.
Thinking that it is, is as inane as thinking that Mondo in BAT3 is a fair and balanced character.
I also enjoyed FF13 to a certain degree - I'd have enjoyed it more, if it had been longer, had more exploration, a deeper combat-system, more minigames/interactive parts, cities, more side-quests of varied nature, and a more unique story.
This is sad to me, because I know SE could have done that if they had wanted to, and cared less about quick bucks, and more about creating quality games.
Consider if FF7 had been released(in the wake of a game like FF6), with Vagrant Story(top notch for PSX era) graphics, 20(+/-) hour completely linear gameplay, no exploration, no minigames, and a story which was more or less a complete revamp of an earlier game -
What would people say?
That is basically what FF13 is.