The Search for Video Game Greatness


To see the first part of this little series, please check out this post about how a young me lost hours upon hours of video game progress. Then, come back here to continue to the tale.

On day four, you wrote a post about losing something. Today, write about finding something. Today’s twist: if you wrote day four’s post as the first in a series, use this one as the second installment – loosely defined.


When last we left this story, I had just accidentally erased all the progress on my beloved Chrono Trigger game cartridge because the game had not been properly seated in the console. But the question was why had the game not been properly seated? I hadn’t removed the game from the console for weeks, so the only explanation was that someone else had, and since I didn’t have any siblings, it could only have been one of my parents. Since my father had no good reason to be in my room without me there, I was pretty certain I knew who the culprit was.

“Mom!” I cried, the frustration of my loss still fresh. “Did you touch my game?!”

She obviously heared the upset in my voice because she came immediately. I explained what had happened and she told me that she had removed the game when she was cleaning up, and didn’t realize that she hadn’t put it back in right. I remember being so mad, and shouting about how there was absolutely no reason for her to need to remove the game while cleaning. At the time I was just so angry and frustrated that it never occurred to me that mabe it was just an excuse…maybe my mother had another, more justifiable reason for popping my Chrono Trigger cartridge out of the console.

You see, another of my favorite games of all time (maybe THE favorite) is Final Fantasy 3, the US version. It was about a year before the Chrono Trigger incident that my best friend and I discovered Final Fantasy 3 for the first time. We found it at the local rental shop and spent more of our spare change and allowance money renting it than I would care to admit to. The problem was that, like most role-playing-games of this age, there were only three save slots, so if you ran out of money to rent it and someone else snagged it in the meantime, there was a damn good chance that your progress would be saved over by the time you got it back. Between this and the fact that FF3 required about 40 hours of gameplay to complete, well…it was damn near impossible for us to get anywhere. I badly wanted my own copy of the game, but this was a time when you were lucky to find the newly-released, super-desired games in stores in Nova Scotia, and shopping on the internet was not yet a thing. I scoured secondhand shops for the game, inquired at school to see if anyone had it and wanted to sell it, and even asked the rental shop owner if they would consider selling it. I wanted it terribly, but I could never find a copy that anyone was willing to part with.

Cue Christmas Day. I got many awesome presents that day, I’m sure, but there’s only one that still stands out in my memory to this day. It was a small, rectangular box, and the first thing I saw as I tore away the wrapping paper was a moogle: a small, white, bear-like creature that is a staple of the Final Fantasy series. I remember absolutely freaking out. I was holding in my hands a copy of Final Fantasy 3, slightly-battered box and all. My parents had contacted a local games shop (which did buy-and-sell) and asked to be notified if a copy of the game ever came in. And then it was finally revealed: the reason my mother had removed my Chrono Trigger cartridge from the console was so that she could test the used game cartridge she had just purchased to make sure it worked before giving it to me.

Needless to say, forgiveness was more than given that day. Sure, my mom had destroyed my save state in one of my favorite games ever, but she had my father had also paid enough attention to me and put in enough effort to track down a copy of a game that I wanted more than anything. I lost hours of gameplay in one game, but they found me the perfect Christmas present, and so all was right in the world for another day.

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