|Match Date||Tuesday, August 1st, 2006|
|The Legend of Zelda - 51.05%|
66 for - 49 against
|The Legend of Zelda - 35.66%|
Yay user submitted pics. There's always one or two real gems whenever these come up, and getting to see Dark Knight Cecil = win.
And for the second match in a row, the final score doesn't do the match justice at all. At a glance, you see a tough 3000 vote win for Zelda. In reality, look at what Zelda was up against for a moment.
The mentality here was that the combined strength of the Final Fantasy franchise would be too much for Zelda to handle. And it was a good theory, because FF7 demolished OOT in 2004. Even if you add all the Zelda games together, would Zelda even beat FF7? Would Link beat FF7? After all, everyone knows that Link is a complete and valid proxy for the entire Zelda series and his contest strength in character battles was a perfect indicative of how Zelda would do against Final Fantasy --- see also: "not well".
But no one thought to consider the opposite point of view --- that is, Final Fantasy 7 being a complete and valid proxy for the full force of the Final Fantasy series. I made a point pre-contest, and it was of course passed off. It's a good time to bring it back up. Not an exact wording, but it's close enough:
"Let's assume that Link actually is a proxy for the Zelda series for a moment, and that Zelda fans are every bit as diverse as FF fans. Looking into the strength of the games, you get a closer match than everyone thinks.
This essentially leaves us with FF7 being the only thing in the Final Fantasy series that is reliably stronger than its Zelda counterpart. All the other Zelda games being equal to and/or stronger than their counterparts can't help make up the difference? Link being a complete beast and being a combined 5-1 against Cloud and Sephiroth can't help make up the difference? The massive and ongoing Nintendo boost since the Twilight Princess announcement can't help make up the difference?
Plug in Summer 2005 Link against Final Fantasy 7 in the Xst Calculator, just for kicks. FF7 only wins with 50.4% of the vote. All of the other, non-FF7 factors favoring Zelda can't allow Zelda to pull off the upset here? Frankly, Zelda has an excellent chance to win this. All FF has going for it is FF7, because the added boost from the other games is shaky if Zelda gets any boost at all from its non-OOT games as well.
I'm sticking with FF in my bracket, but I won't be surprised at all if Zelda wins."
This was a great debate before Mario/FF, but the match was a mere formality once FF showed any sign of weakness. The "Zelda might be close to Mario in strength before SFF" logic was wishful thinking at best, plus all of the Nintendo fans were just pissed as hell once Mario went down. The second Mario/FF ended, it's like the entirety of Nintendo decided to try and crush FF all at the same time.
And frankly, it worked. Within the first two and a half hours of the poll, Zelda jumped out to a 2200 vote lead with minimal resistance. It's kind of a shame that we have so many Link/Cloud matches to draw trends from, because the FF comeback attempt that happened after this would have actually meant something. As it stood, FF using the night vote to cut that 2200 vote lead down to 1400 meant nothing. It's like when you're dating a really hot girl that you know is cheating on you. You know it's over, but you let it ride out as long as possible anyway just because she's hot. And FF strung this thing out for a long time. Its comeback/stall effort lasted all the way until 8 a.m., well past the time when Link began laying waste to Cloud so many times prior. But everyone knew what was coming.
Zelda used its historically beastly day vote to lay Final Fantasy to waste and clinch arguably the biggest contest upset since Cloud > Link in 2003. Its lead grew to 3800 before the evening vote kicked in and allowed FF to make the match a bit more respectable. FF cut that 3800 vote lead down to 3200. Ceej was even nice enough to count the votes from the poll closing glitch that extended the poll five minutes. That extra five minutes actually allowed FF to break 49%.
But like Magus a year ago, a push to make the match respectable doesn't stick with anyone. FF was the overwhelming favorite. It was the obvious favorite. It was supposed to crush this contest with ease, much like Sephiroth in the villain's contest. But it choked. Hard. Welcome to the final transition to NintendoFAQs, folks. The summer of 2003 when Nintendo and Square were even seems like such a long time ago...
But unlike Square's gradual decline, Nintendo has no reason to lose strength on GameFAQs for a long time. Not with the Wii as anticipated as it is and Sony and Square doing everything in their power to screw themselves over. We might be seeing NintendoFAQs for quite a while.
As a final note on the final, the total votes and FF's votes in a loss are records that may never be broken. Then again I said this after Link/Cloud 2003, and we saw how that turned out.
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