5 WTF moments in Square Enix Games

We celebrate those crazy moments in games that make you go… “WTF?”
By Duncan Heaney

Videogames are multi-faceted things. They can be exciting, they can be funny, or emotional… and sometimes they can be really bloomin’ weird.

Square Enix games in particular are full of amazing moments that surprise and delight with just how odd they are. Take these five for example:

Beware spoilers for Just Cause 4, Tomb Raider Legend, NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139…, FINAL FANTASY VI and FINAL FANTASY IX

Rico Rodriguez has an A-ha moment - Just Cause 4

It would be fair to say that Rico Rodriguez’s entire regime-toppling career has been a series of WTF moments.

On a typical day, he’ll turn a sensible family saloon into a rocket-powered battering ram, cause millions of dollars of property damage with a simple wire and face-plant into the ground at 60MPH.

…at least while we’re controlling him.

With all that, you’d think it’d be hard to take us by surprise in Just Cause 4, and yet…

In an unassuming area of the map, you’ll come across a non-descript building. At first nothing seems out of the ordinary (save maybe for the fact that Rico’s near it and nothing’s on fire yet), but listen close and you’ll hear… music?

Step down into the building, and suddenly Rico is in the legendary music video for A-ha’s Take On Me - complete with a line-drawing filter and dancing woman.

The player accidentally steps into a different genre - NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139…

One of the interesting things about NieR Replicant is how it plays with genre. It’s not uncommon for the game to suddenly change your viewpoint, or introduce new mechanics when you least expect it.

A good example of this happens in the Forest of Myth. When the young protagonist enters this village of verdent vegetation, he’s surprised to discover the inhabitants in some kind of reverie.

Upon speaking to the mayor, he and Grimoire Weiss are startled - and irritated - to discover that their actions and feelings are being narrated by the in-game text. This narration only gets more and more dominant until, eventually, it’s taken over the game itself, replacing the characters and scenery with words.

Suddenly you realize - you and the heroes are trapped in a old-school text adventure.. and that’s only the beginning of the craziness.

We’ll let you discover what’s really going on yourselves, but rest assured it’s quite the trip. And yet this is but one surprise in a game that overflows with mind-bending and emotional moments.

Get NieR Replicant ver.1.22474487139…

A swing and a miss for Lara Croft - Tomb Raider Legend

Everyone knows that Lara Croft is agile, intelligent and skilled enough to take on any challenge. She does have one weakness though - we control her actions.

The result is that poor Lara often finds herself involved in various mishaps that are entirely her fault. Perhaps the most unexpected - and hilarious - example of this can be seen in Tomb Raider Legend.

During the third level, set in Japan, Lara must ascend an enormous skyscraper… on the outside (a rise of the Tomb Raider, if you will). At one point, she has to cross to another rooftop, and true to form, she chooses the coolest way to do it - leaping the gap on a motorbike, before jumping off and grappling over to safe ground (well, roof).

Unfortunately for her, the maneuver requires the player to quickly respond to button prompts. Failure to release the grapple in time leads Lara to splat comically into a light fixture, like something out of an old cartoon.

It’s one of Lara’s most spectacularly ridiculous pratfalls - and almost worth failing intentionally just to experience!

Ultros gets his portrait done - FINAL FANTASY VI

I’ve said it before, but Ultros is just the best. This inept octopus has a chip on his shoulder - if indeed a multi-tentacled monstrosity has shoulders.

Every encounter with Ultros is a weird, wonderful treat, but perhaps the most head-tilting comes in the Esper caves. Still salty about his earlier defeats the cranky cephalopod attacks Locke, Terra and Strago, and a pitched battle begins.

Suddenly, it’s interrupted by Strago’s granddaughter Relm, who has secretly followed the trio to the caves. She asks to take Ultros’ portrait, and after being guilt-tripped into accepting by the heroes, he begrudgingly agrees.

Unfortunately for the multi-armed mollusk, when he sees what he looks like, he’s utterly horrified. Realizing that he’s “nothing but a stupid octopus”, he slinks off dejectedly and the heroes can continue their journey.

As the FINAL FANTASY fanfare proudly rings out, the player is left to ponder… “um, what just happened?”

Vivi and Quina get married - FINAL FANTASY IX

Not every FINAL FANTASY IX player will have borne witness this little scene, but it stands as one of the most unexpected - and unexpectedly heart-warming - of the entire series to date.

It takes place on the Zidane and team’s return visit to Conde Petie. Hot on the trail of their nemesis Kuja, the party needs to gain entry to the settlement’s Sanctuary, but there’s a problem: only married couples are allowed through.

So Zidane and Garnet agree to be married, but after the ceremony is complete, Zidane can suggest that Quina and Vivi follow suit.

There’s no right or wrong decision here, but if you do choose this option, the nervous little Black Mage and frog-obsessed Qu will indeed go through the ceremony and tie the knot.

It’s a hilarious scene that comes out of nowhere, but always makes us smile. Why not try it yourselves on your next playthrough?

Sniff. Excuse us - we always cry at weddings.