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Five. I played VII when it first came out at a friend's house. He let me borrow the first disc after he beat it, and I didn't particularly get into it. I didn't mind it, though. I then purchased VIII, well my parents did when it came out, and I quite liked it. I got to disc 3 and gave up, but I still enjoy a lot of what I played and understood. I ended up not buying IX, though I borrowed it a lot from a friend.
Favourite Final Fantasy? http://www.gamefaqs.com/boards/704528-final-fantasy-xv/65961290
I was about 11-12 when I played FF Tactics for the PS1. I wasn't much of a gamer back then so I actually never heard of Final Fantasy before that and I assumed the series contained all SRPGs like FFT, lol. After that I got into 5 and 6 with FF Anthology and worked my way forward and backtracked with remakes and checked out the other sequels, prequels, spin-offs and what not.
I think because I started out with that SRPG game I was pretty open to the changes and evolution seen in the series over the years since I came on board with such a radically different game from the franchise. Regardless, FFT is still one of my all time fave games ever ^^
I was seven when I first played IX in early 2001. My cousin had bought it when it came out, having been playing since the SNES days himself, and I became fascinated by the game watching him play. I gave it a go myself, but was never able to pass Gizamaluke's Grotto.
A few years later, my cousin happened to acquire FFs VII and IX in a deal from Cash Converters, and passed them on to me. I remember starting up VII, and wondering why that scene with the candle wasn't appearing like I remembered. I then started up IX, found that scene, and subsequently finished it only a week later aged eleven. I've been playing Final Fantasy religiously since.
I would prefer to be known as BlackWaltzTheThird, or just Waltz for short. Official Froakie of the Pokemon X boards.