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  • Big Lipped Alligator Moment: The giant beavers at the bottom of the Ice Cavern. Aside from giving a chance to helpfully inform us that "Guy speak beaver," they have absolutely no relevance to the plot or to anything else in the game. The most logical conclusion as to their inclusion in the game is that they were intended to be expies of Ewoks, in that their demonstratively minor actions ultimately lead to the defeat of a global empire. Likewise, Guy "speaking beaver" is probably supposed to reinforce an analogous connection to Chewbacca.
  • Complete Monster: The Emperor is so thoroughly evil that even his light side is a bad guy!
  • Demonic Spiders:
    • A few creatures fit this description, but Chaos Riders from Soul of Rebirth are the worst example. Insanely high defence and magic defence (you'll be lucky to inflict any damage at all); maxed out spells like Confuse, Slow and, worst of all, Osmose; a tendency to attack in groups and a powerful draining physical attack if it were to run out of MP.
    • Anything that can inflict Confusion. They usually target everyone, cast it almost every round, and unlike in later games, your characters don't snap out of it upon being hit. Your confused characters will never target the enemies and take quite a few rounds to return to normal, and late in the game you're often doing so much damage that your characters can kill themselves in a matter of seconds, meaning that navigating certain dungeons is a matter of whether or not you get ambushed by these things. (The Mysidian Tower is the worst, having two enemies that can do this- Mini-Satana and Devil's Bloom.)
    • Cockatrices make their glorious return from the original Final Fantasy. The still inflict stone, which is still an effective instant-kill. They do this on contact. And come in packs of 6. Your party size is only 4.
  • Ear Worm: That goddamn eerie yet catchy mid-boss music used in the remade versions of the game.
  • Esoteric Happy Ending: The ending warmly states that the wounds of the war would heal in time...how the hell do you even begin to recover from the utter destruction of 99.9% of the world?!
    • Simple. One tile at a time.
    • It's arguably more of a Bittersweet Ending in tone, especially considering Leon's departure.
  • Game Breaker: Buff spells, blood swords (which do damage proportional to the target's maximum HP as a result of being HP-drainers, making them deadly against bosses), the minigame exploit (the puzzles repeat every 32 tries, allowing for easy late game equipment) plus the leveling related issues, something that could fill most of an FF subpage on gamebreakers.
    • The bare fist "weapon" skill upgrades the basic damage a character does barehanded to compensate for no purchaseable weapon upgrades in this category. It ends up making fists drastically overpowered quite early in the game.
    • A secret minigame accessible in the Snowfields allows you to play a 16 card match-type game where you receive rewards based on how fast you match all cards and how many misses you get. With good memory and fast reflexes, you can score Ethers, Hi-Potions, Phoenix Downs and thousands of gil. Did we mention this game costs you nothing but time and can be played infinitely? What about the fact that each time you access the minigame, there are only 32 puzzles "solutions" the game will cycle through, in-order? Finally, getting the Toad spell up to Level 16 increases the Gil obtained, and changes the items won from restorative items to items that cast spells and incredibly powerful equipment.
    • The Teleport spell. In battle, it can kill enemies instantly, and at a high enough level, you can consistently get kills against many enemies. Even better, you can level it up outside of battle by entering a town/dungeon, casting Teleport, re-entering the town/dungeon, etc. The only downside is that it leaves the caster with low HP, but you can use Cure on him/her (which, in turn, allows that spell to level up as well).
    • The life spell. Casting it against large numbers of undead is a good way of leveling it, and makes them a lot easier to deal with.
  • Good Bad Bug: In the original and PS 1 versions, if one selects a move and then cancels it, the game treated it as if you had performed the move, for the purposes of raising stats. Thus it is possible to get astronomically high strength and magic skills almost as soon as you start the game, if your fingers can take it.
    • When facing single foes if you set a damage spell to multi target you do 1.5 times as much damage (The formula for the damage is the normal damage plus 50% divided by the number of foes).
  • Magnificent Bastard: The Emperor, who may have the honor of being the most relentless villain in the entire Final Fantasy series. First off, the game begins with the guy unleashing the powers of Hell upon the world and conquering a prominent kingdom. Then, he constructs a warship which bombs nearly every town in the game, kidnaps the female leader of La Résistance, replaces her with a monster and allows the heroes to "rescue" her (who then kills off the King), builds a flying castle that completley ruins nearly every town in the game, and then after being killed by the party, he takes over Hell AND Heaven and comes back stronger than before. (Whether this was on purpose or not is not clear.) This guy was NOT fucking around.
  • Memetic Mutation: The Emperor's weird death cry in the Japanese version: "UBOAR!" (And to a lesser extent, the English version "UNGAAHH!") Tidus lampshades it in Dissidia Final Fantasy, as seen here.
    • Firion's scene with Hilda (well, actually a Lamia Queen) is popular in Japan as well. His reaction to Hilda's seduction ('Gulp...') has led to him being called 'doutei' or 'virgin' (which rhymes with the Emperor's title, 'koutei').
  • Newer Than They Think AND Older Than They Think: This game was the origin of a lot of Final Fantasy standbys. Newer Than They Think is for elements like Cid (unless you count Cid of the Lufaine), chocobos, etc., which weren't in Final Fantasy I—this comes as a surprise to a lot of people. And Older Than They Think comes into play with many of the plot elements—the Evil Empire, Bishounen villain who's seeking godhood, essentially, party members being Killed Off for Real, and even the presence of any plot at all—which many people seem to think only started in the SNES and PS 1 era.
  • The Scrappy: The game as a whole in the entire series. For North American and European players, this game isn't even protected by nostalgia, since it wasn't released outside Japan. Many of them consider this game unplayable. But The Remake:
    • Surprisingly Improved Remake: The various remakes have given the leveling system some much needed ironing out of its many flaws, and have met much better reception as a result.
  • Viewer Gender Confusion: Despite explicitly being called a man in his introduction, Minwu is often mistaken for female. His potent healing abilites and robes might have something to do with this.
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