Final Fantasy 6 Randomizer Hack Worlds Collide Opens the Worlds Up From the Start
Final Fantasy 6: Worlds Collide is a new open-world randomizer which starts you in your airship, and lets you explore the worlds as you like from the start.
The randomizer variety of rom-hacks is a steadily growing sub-sect of the retro game landscape. Two that are growing particularly fast in popularity are the open-world hacks of the Super Nintendo classics are Final Fantasy IV: Free Enterprise and Final Fantasy V: Career Day. The former even appeared in the popular Awesome Games Done Quick marathons. These hacks give players access to their respective airships from the start. These turn originally straight-forward, narrative-driven games into globe-trotting scavenger hunts. They make players track down the various key items needed to trigger events, unlock characters, items and abilities as they go. Each playthrough is a whole new hunt for treasure, characters, and bosses.
This past weekend, user AtmaTek on FF6Hacking.com released the beta version of his randomizer, Final Fantasy 6: Worlds Collide. The hack applies a similar hook of Free Enterprise and Career Day, starting you off on the bridge of the airship. The vessel now complete with the added ability to time travel. From there, you will be jumping back-and-forth between the Worlds of Balance and Ruin to gather your party and Espers with the end of goal of growing your forces enough to take on the crazy clown, Kefka, at the top of his tower.
Final Fantasy 6 has much less of a focus on items tied to progressing the story, so Worlds Collide has to take a different approach. To keep you from heading straight to Kefka’s Tower, you will need to find a certain number of characters and pieces of magicite. Until then, you won’t be able to land at the tower. Both of these values can be adjusted by the player when they create their randomized game. Once your forces are assembled and your magic rocks are equipped you can scale the tower and claim victory.
This new hack comes complete with your traditional randomizer staples. In addition to the airships and time-traveling, the contents of chests, shop inventories and prices, rewards from bosses, and what characters you recruit from the various story events are all randomized too. As an added bonus, players are given the ability to adjust the experience, AP, and money they gain per fight, allow party members to equip all items and start the game with as many Moogle Charms (a relic that prevents random encounters) as they want.
Worlds Collide is still in early development, but is very much playable. My first romp took me about seven hours to complete. Story events are dramatically shortened in order to facilitate quick playthroughs. It’s been a while since I played through so finding my required amount of magicite took longer than expected. Starting off with the uncontrollable sasquatch, Umaro, I took to the skies in search of a party. With a few early finds of some extremely powerful equipment, my party of Sabin, Celes, Cyan, and Umaro was beefy enough to search for the rest of the cast and finish the preparations for the tower run. With the experience, AP, and money multipliers on by default, by the time I reached Kefka, he hardly proved to be a challenge.
The aspect I found the most in need of tweaking was with how the shops price the items. In this first release, there is no logic implemented in the code to help define a range that each item should be worth. Your simple tincture items can cost tens of thousands of gil to buy when the Gold Hairpin, a relic that reduces magic consumption by half, could cost a meager 1000. It doesn’t break the game since the items you scavenge from chests and enemies can also be sold for ridiculous amounts as well, but implementing a system to regulate the extreme prices would be welcome.
Response and reception to Worlds Collide from Final Fantasy 6 hacking community are optimistic, positive and helpful. Players are filling the forum post with suggestions of features they’d like to see, notes on bugs they’re encountering and just general positive messages to the creator, Atmatek. The creator Atmatek deserves special recognition. The speed in which they respond and address points is fast and thorough. Going so far as having implement a couple of fixes and release a newer version of the beta, less than a day after its initial release.
For players that are interested in this randomizer, a Discord has been set up, focused solely around the development and progress of Worlds Collide!
For those that may be interested in trying the beta yourself, here are a handful of helpful tips on so you can quickly recruit a few party members:
- Doma Castle : Fly over to Doma and enter the castle, this will trigger the scene where Cyan would normally fight the soldiers at their gates. After this fight, you will get whatever character appears.
- The Veldt : Normally the home of Gau, you will need to find a piece of Dried Meat, to feed the character that appears after you finish a fight. Remember though, don’t attack him otherwise the character will flee. You can find Dried Meat as a monsters drop, in shops, or in random chests.
- The Floating Continent : Complete the floating continent and instead of jumping to the airship for safety, select wait instead. If you select wait twice, you won’t have to wait for the timer to end, and a character will join the party as you all leap to the airship below
- The Opera : Quickly head up the stairs where the party normally takes their seats, to trigger the scene with Ultros in the rafters. Progress and fight Ultros as you normally would and you will receive your new character after the fight.
As a frequent player of both Free Enterprise and Career Day and a big fan of randomizers in general, seeing and playing Worlds Collide was the highlight of my weekend. With so much support already from the community, I hope it will help this randomizer reach its amazing potential. I would love to see features such as duplicate characters, randomized bosses, features found in Free Enterprise and Career Day make their way into Worlds Collide. Fans of randomizers, Final Fantasy, and speedruns should keep their eyes trained on this one.