This is going to be a long post, so you can skip to the TLDR section if you feel like it, but I find the story interesting.
I was a Sophomore in high school, pretty average I would say. I had crushes, which let me down. I played football, but our team sucked. I played video games for as long as I can remember. My parents owned a restaurant, and by no means were we rich, but every once in a while I would get the itch for a new game. I would work a few extra hours washing dishes, or busing tables, or doing whatever, and save up for that new 50 dollar gamecube game. (yes, I'm a nintendo junkie)
Well about midway through the school year, my best friend had been missing a lot of days, only coming in for about 2 days a week. He looked mighty sick as well. He was pale, emotionless, and was struggling to keep up. I asked him if he would like a hand with his classes. He begrudgingly accepted and after school that next day he missed I brought over my notes and homework, planning to get a long day of studying in.
As I approached the staircase to his upstairs bedroom, I saw all the lights were off, so I just figured he was sleeping. As i continued up however, I noticed a strange glow emanating from his behind his bedroom door. Probably just left the TV on after a movie I thought to myself. I burst the door open, with every intent to wake him, and what I saw disturbed me. A chill ran down my spine when I saw the horror before my eyes.
He was seated on a lazy-boy recliner, hunched over a milk crate, smashing keys on what must have been the worlds smallest keyboard. He has a Playstation 2 remote resting on the armrest of his chair. What looked to have been a lifetime supply of mountain dew and hot fried were piled around him, and upon further inspection, most of them were empty. His bed however, looked as if it hadn't been touched in weeks, and used as more of a shelf then a place to rest.
He barely noticed me walking in. He attempted to speak, but what might have sounded like a sentence in his mind, only came out as a sort of babbling. After a fee more seconds, I finally got asked the question that has been brewing in my mind this whole time.
"What the **** are you playing?" I said, almost afraid of the response.
The first understandable words he muttered were, "Final Fantasy, Online"
Ahhh, it all made sense to me now, he had said he was looking forward to this game. He sure did enjoy his final fantasy's but at what cost? he looked like a ghost.
After a few more minutes of prodding, he finally told his "static" that he needed to take a "bio" break. We got to talking about the game, which is when I saw the first bit of emotion out of him. The inevitable question from him was "so ... wanna play?"
How could I? I asked myself. After seeing what it has done to him, what sane individual what put themselves through that kind of torture. He looked at me, with an expression similar to an aspiring chef asking you to taste his latest, gut wrenching, creation. I looked him straight in the eyes, took a deep breath, and said the only reasonable thing given the situation layed out before me.
"HELLS YEAH I WANNA PLAY!"
After about 3 weeks or scrubbing dishes, and pulling together every last penny I could come across, I bought a Playstation 2, and the game. I never looked back.
That was the first FF title I had ever played, and I felt compelled to try them all. Although its not the same start other people had, I'm sure, but I now have played almost every single FF title, and love the series!
TLDR: long story, FFXI was my first FF game, played them all, love them
Thank you every who read it! let me know what you think :)