That One Time I Tried to Speedrun FINAL FANTASY IV

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Avatar for ahmadmanga
8 months ago

FFIV Speedrun. Kina... In this post, you'll find links to watch it as I explain what led me to the speedrun attempt, the tools I used, and whether it succeeded...

One day on Twitch, I randomly stumbled upon a speedrun of a game I liked. Since then, I followed the speedrunner and watched him from time to time.

A Speedrun is a challenge to complete a video game in the shortest time possible. A speedrun playthrough usually have rules on the acceptable methods to shave time. Speedruns are often recorded and posted online.

That wasn't the first time I watch a speedrun, as I did watch IGN's Devs React to Speedruns, but the first one I experienced live. After a while, I got interested in making my own run, but while I had a few games in mind I never knew what to choose.

Choosing the Game

I wanted to play Digimon World 1 the most, but I don't legally own this game which makes me uncomfortable posting a speedrun footage for it.

I own Final Fantasy games but they're too long. Same with other RPGs. I couldn't record a playthrough with the Nintendo Switch, and my PC isn't powerful enough to record most of the demanding 3D games I own. On the 2D side, I thought about Gunvolt but I'm bad at side-scrolling action games.

Thinking about it for a time, I decided that my best option from the games I own is FFIV. So, I proceeded with the speedrun attempt.

The Setup & Rules

I prepared OBS Studio along with LiveSplit. Both applications are used by Speedrunners for recording the footage and tracking time respectively. Running LiveSplit on Linux was a challenge, so I switched to my Windows LiveUSB for this. I also managed to have on-screen Gamepad indicator for a visual representation of my button presses.

I didn't plan on a Full Game speedrun for this. I learned about the Paladin Run which ends when Cecil overcomes Mount Ordeal and becomes a paladin. I decided to play a Paladin Run without caring too much about the speed. I didn't skip the cutscenes in this playthrough, but I planned on skipping them when I do an actual speedrun that competes on

The way I recorded my footage is in chunks. After every milestone, I would save the game and stop the timer. This method of RTA (Real Time Attack) is different from the time tracking methods accepted by's listings. As I shouldn't stop the timer at all during play. (At least for FFIV's Paladin% Run.) I only realized that after the fact.

In general, the rules I set for myself were:

  • Speed-through dialogue in a way people who watch can stop the video and read it.

  • Never skip voiced cutscenes.

  • Easy Mode. (Read Below.)

  • The run is successful when I finish Mount Ordeal and became a Paladin.

  • If I lose a battle, I mark the run as a Failed Attempt. (This is what happened! Read below.)

The Footage Recording Experience

I did mulitple attempts at this speedrun. I first tried my speedrun on Hard Mode, but it was challenging and each battle took a long time. I figured since Hard Mode mainly gives enemies more HP, I'll just go with Easy Mode to finish the run faster.

I reached the Mist Dragon battle multiple times on the first day. I recorded a few of them, but I kept losing the battle itself. After I re-learned how to beat it, (now I can beat it even with a Level 1 Cecil,) I finally got hang of the game, and went to battle Octomammoth and Antilion in a single run.

The further I got before I lost the challenge is the 4th Boss: Mom Bomb.

I made sure to take breaks, and the ending of each video is where I decided to take each break.

I decided to upload the footage for this attempt, but I realized I didn't record the 4th boss itself, and only have the first 3 Parts ending with the cutscenes after Antlion's battle. I don't know if I forgot to record them altogether or if I decided to not do it because I accidentally reset the timer of LiveSplit.

Anyway, I think these videos are worth watching even if they're from an incomplete and failed playthrough. You can watch the videos on DTube. (I tried to upload them on ThreeSpeak too, but failed) so I put links to them in this article:

Watch on DTube:

Part 1: (Boss: Mist Dragon)

The Dark Knight Cecil was ordered to plunder a Crystal from Mysidia. Troubled with the guilt, he questions his King's orders only to get punished. He's to deliver a Ring to the Village of Mist. He goes on this journey with his friend Kain. They fight a Dragon, and meet a young girl with Summoning powers.

Part 2: (Boss: Octomammoth)

Cecil brings Rydia with him to the next village to save her. She learns of his good nature and decides to go with him. They find Rosa in one villager's home severely ill. They search for a cure for her and meet the great mage Tellah.

Part 3 : (Boss: Antlion)

After reaching Damcyan and finding it in ruins. Cecil and Rydia ask the price to take them to Antlion Cave to get the cure for Rosa. Antlion was supposed to be a docile creature but...

What do you think?

This was a fun experiment. I learned a lot about streaming while doing this, (even though my internet connection isn't strong enough to stream anything.) I hope to do another speedrun in the future soon. But for now, I wish you all a great day.

  • All screenshots are taken from the run's footage that I uploaded.

  • This article is also on Hive's Ecency.

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Avatar for ahmadmanga
8 months ago


Which version is this? The newest 3D remake? I want to play it soon, but right now i dont have time for it. I havent played with video games for more than a decade. I restarting it for multiple reasons. This game is on my boot list.

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8 months ago

I won't call it new. It released on PC in 2014, but it's originally made for the Nintendo DS in 2007. Many versions of FFIV appeared since then, the latest version is 2D though: FFI Pixel Remaster.

If you want to go back to games, I think FFIV (any version) is a good place to start even if you're new to the RPG genre. It takes about 30 hours to complete, but the pace is really good, it won't feel boring.

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7 months ago