Famicom Pirate Monday #8: Final Fantasy IV

On this edition of Famicom Pirate Monday, I have a game that I have been actively seeking ever since I discovered it existed over a year and a half ago. I picked this up on Ebay of all places for MUCH less than I would’ve paid for it.

This game, titled simply “Final Fantasy IV”, is as far as i can tell a pretty faithful (hardware limitations considered) 8-bit remake of the beloved Super Nintendo classic Final Fantasy 2 (IV).

You can imagine some of the inherent difficulty that comes with playing a game completely in simplified Chinese, but from the hour or so I was willing to sink into this game it appears that most of the major opening plot points are established. I say “most of” because the opening of the game starts on the airship just after Cecil snatches the crystal of water from the Mysidians, so that bit has been gleaned off.

Other than that, there is the fight on the airship deck with the Floating Eyes (see below), however instead of fighting all three at the same time like the original, you fight them in three successive battles. It then moves to the throne room scene with Baigan, the King, and the introduction of Kain. I wholeheartedly say that I am quite impressed with the level of detail in this game.

Of course, the game does play like dog shit; but not nearly as bad as the Final Fantasy VII Famicom pirate. The battles are slow, you are pretty under powered in the first few battles. Things do get easier once Kain joins you as a party member, but even still the enemy encounter rate is even higher than the Famicom Final Fantasy 3, which is saying a lot. Speaking of the Final Fantasy VII pirate, I noticed that this title borrows all of that games musical score, which is primarily comprised of looping distorted farts. In the games defense, these farts sometimes resemble Final Fantasy-esque music.

I don’t mean to complain, however. The sheer magnitude of this endeavor deserves our utmost respect and attention; yes it is not the best Final Fantasy game ever made, not even close. Hell, you might even call it broken- nigh, unplayable; but it is still among the greatest Famicom Chinese originals I have ever come across, and the brave Chinese pirates should be proud of their accomplishment.

Again, like most Chinese pirates, packaging is the high point for me. It seems, much like the FFVII pirate, that a surprising amount of effort was put into making this game look professional. It has that signature Chinese pirate flourish of being printing on holographic paper (no unauthorized reproductions, now!) and comes with a manual and this wicked awesome cart label, which I am pretty sure is from Dissidia:

Being a Final Fantasy lover, I was destined to own a copy of this game. It makes a nice addition to my Famicom pirate collection, and is nicely book ended by my Final Fantasy X2 pirate and my Final Fantasy VII. Keep your eyes on Ebay if you want a copy of this; it’s bound to turn up again… maybe.


13 thoughts on “Famicom Pirate Monday #8: Final Fantasy IV

  1. That would not surprise me in the least. The hour I played was with a turbo controller, and it was still border line unbearable.

  2. Forgive my terrible Chinese but the subtitle seems to read Light give to dark, the crystal war. I just find it strange that they gave it a subtitle instead of the regular direct translations of THE FINAL FANTASY with literal Chinese characters for final and fantasy. Sadly despite stealing the castle from the first FF this doesn’t feel that much of a stretch to me. I know that this was created in time for Square-enix’s announcement of the new FFIV but my question is does this include the after years story line?

  3. this was actually create a couple years ago, and I doubt it has the entire FF4 storyline, let alone the After Years also. And thanks for the translation!

  4. Great stuff. I can’t believe that about the final boss though. That’s just crazy! Well I hope to get me a copy of this as this is one of my favorite Final Fantasy games ever! Not this one but the original FF4….

  5. FINAL FANTASY IV is perhaps my favorite in the series, which was why I was so excited when they localized THE AFTER YEARS.

    I’m impressed that a port of this exists, and in my opinion, it’d probably be superior to the FINAL FANTASY VII one that exists. I actually have a copy of the FF7 port, having tracked it down on TaoBao some time ago.

    I wonder if this game exists there? I imagine that it does.

    Do you think it’s worth tracking down?

  6. The art on the cart is “borrowed” from the FINAL FANTASY IV remake on the Nintendo DS. The box art is also one of the key assets used to promote the game.

  7. I’ve played this game off and on over the past year and have gotten fairly far into it (around the Tower of Babil or whatever)…The game actually is fairly complete and close to the original, though some areas are condensed and the story is a little condensed from the few things I can gather. Also, the areas don’t have treasures or anything in them, which is a little strange. Other than that, it is a neat little game and worth tracking down to add to a collection. :)

  8. @Cecil: The characters aren’t that weak, but I have encountered a bug to where once you get to either level 35 or 40 you level up and go back down to 29 or so, which kind of sucks. X_X

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