Thanks to Scott Baird of ScreentRants.com for the inspiration!
3. THE WHITE SEED SHIP MISSION
One of the most important characters in Final Fantasy VIII is Ellone. She has the ability to send a person’s consciousness back in time. Ultimecia uses a machine that was based on Ellone’s powers in order to do the same thing. Ellone’s abilities are so powerful that she is protected by the White SeeDs, who keep her moving at all times.
At one point in Final Fantasy VIII, Squall needs to find Ellone. The only information he has on her whereabouts is a letter from Edea that hints at Ellone’s location.
You need to find the White SeeD ship, which is hidden in a small inlet around the Centra Crater. The game isn’t so generous with this information, however, which means that most players will be stuck hugging the coast while swimming around every continent and island in an effort to find the White SeeD ship.
This is something that was so easy to avoid, yet it became one of the most frustrating quests in the game.
Remember when you spent hours looking for a particular thing or item, in an elaborate game of hide-and-seek? Final Fantasy VIII has that too!
So then the author wants this scene cut because it was too hard to find the White SeeD ship?
Apparently, X7Strife knows “people who couldn’t progress any further because of this”. Yes, it was hard for me too, and it took an hour searching. Thankfully, you can’t get into random encounters while on the floating Balamb Gardens – that would have been terrible.
Imagine how this would look in a fully 3D rendered space. The sensory overload of where to go will set in, making it much harder to find her. If you’re unlucky, this could take hours, days or maybe even weeks.
Of course, if the White SeeDs are trying to hide Ellone, it makes sense they’d keep moving. We wouldn’t get hints of their whereabouts. We should be really thankful they didn’t move around every few minutes and leave just before we got to them. But to make the game more challenging, the developers might do just that. Then, by blind luck, or fate, would you be able to find the White SeeD ship. Two ships passing in the night…
But developers could improve this scene by giving us a break every now and then. You can walk around Balamb Gardens to play cards. Maybe give more character interactions in this time, more drifting, more of Squall’s thoughts. Something to keep our attention span going.