Back in December (I think?) I started playing Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age on the Xbox. It was on Game Pass and I was on a Final Fantasy bender. Then in typical fashion I got distracted and let it drop, but I still had it pinned near the top of the Xbox dashboard because I had every intention of getting back to it.
The other day I opened the Game Pass app and there under “Leaving Soon’ was “Final Fantasy XII: The Zodiac Age.” Bummer. In theory I could drop everything and try to mainline FFXII and finish it by the end of the month (I think that’s when it drops from the lineup) but I know doing that when I wasn’t in the mood would just make me hate the game. I considered buying it, but it is still something like $40 which seems like a lot for a game that originally came out in 2006. Granted this is a remaster but still. Anyway, for now I wave farewell to FFXII and maybe I’ll snag it on sale at some point.
On the same day I got this news, I opened the Microsoft Rewards app to earn some sweet, sweet Microsoft Points/funny money. There was a challenge to “Earn an Achievement In One of Our Top 10 Games”. I looked at the list of games, which I think is more “The top 10 games we want to promote” than anything. Scarlet Nexus was in there.
Before it launched, there was a demo for Scarlet Nexus and I had played it and enjoyed it. I’d even planned to buy the game at launch but something came up…who can remember back that far? And then it popped up on Game Pass and I was happy I hadn’t spent $60 on it. Now I could play it for “free.” *happy dance*
Except I didn’t. This is my Game Pass Achilles Heel. A game I want to play hits the service, I get excited and put it on my mental list of “games I’ll play Real Soon Now” but…I forget that inclusion on Game Pass is transient. Generally games are on there for a year or two, maybe even longer, but most do eventually leave. Use it or lose it. Play it or… belay it? (I’ll work on that.)
So this Microsoft Rewards quest thingie was thankfully the kick in the ass I needed. I fired up Scarlet Nexus and quickly remembered how much I’d enjoyed the demo. It didn’t take long to earn an Achievement to get the Rewards points, but I didn’t stop there. Now I’ve been playing it for a couple nights and my intent, as of right now, is to finish it. Tomorrow that intent may change, what with me being me.
I particularly enjoy Scarlet Nexus while wearing headphones with the sound cranked up. I’m finding the music a delight, even though it is not really in my wheelhouse. The whole anime vibe of the game is enjoyable too, and the Others (the monsters you fight) are delightfully weird.
None of this is news to anyone. We all played the demo, and a good number of us enjoyed it, at least based on my Twitter circles.
So this whole post is really just a cautionary tale about waiting too long to play the Game Pass games you want to play. Don’t be like me, sitting here with my crushed Final Fantasy XII dreams…
I’ll come back to actually playing Scarlet Nexus in a future post. Maybe.