I decided not to sub to Bento because of the fact they just blindly send you something. Subscribed to Game Box Monthly instead since Brian actually tries to find something you don't have. I have a prepaid 6 month sub there. My husband also got me AwesomePack for my birthday. After 6 boxes, I'll cancel if they haven't proven to be good fits for us (especially since I got GBM on sale @ 50% discount).
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The series features a number of recurring character archetypes. Most famously, every game since Final Fantasy II, including subsequent remakes of the original Final Fantasy, features a character named Cid. Cid's appearance, personality, goals, and role in the game (non-playable ally, party member, villain) vary dramatically. However, two characteristics many versions of Cid have in common are 1) being a scientist or engineer, and 2) being tied in some way to an airship the party eventually acquires. Every Cid has at least one of these two traits.
Starting with Final Fantasy VIII, the series adopted a more photo-realistic look. Like Final Fantasy VII, full motion video (FMV) sequences would have video playing in the background, with the polygonal characters composited on top. Final Fantasy IX returned to the more stylized design of earlier games in the series, although it still maintained, and in many cases slightly upgraded, most of the graphical techniques used in the previous two games. Final Fantasy X was released on the PlayStation 2, and used the more powerful hardware to render graphics in real-time instead of using pre-rendered material to obtain a more dynamic look; the game features full 3D environments, rather than have 3D character models move about pre-rendered backgrounds. It is also the first Final Fantasy game to introduce voice acting, occurring throughout the majority of the game, even with many minor characters. This aspect added a whole new dimension of depth to the character's reactions, emotions, and development.
Magic is another common RPG element in the series. The method by which characters gain magic varies between installments, but is generally divided into classes organized by color: "White magic", which focuses on spells that assist teammates; "Black magic", which focuses on harming enemies; "Red magic", which is a combination of white and black magic, "Blue magic", which mimics enemy attacks; and "Green magic" which focuses on applying status effects to either allies or enemies. Other types of magic frequently appear such as "Time magic", focusing on the themes of time, space, and gravity; and "Summoning magic", which evokes legendary creatures to aid in battle and is a feature that has persisted since Final Fantasy III. Summoned creatures are often referred to by names like "Espers" or "Eidolons" and have been inspired by mythologies from Arabic, Hindu, Norse, and Greek cultures.