Berserkers on the Loose! The Armorless Variant

If you've read through the previous report on this website, you should remember that the Iron Fists were a variant team that eschewed weapons in order to focus exclusively on defense and healing magic. That was an entertaining variant to play through, but it was very slow at times. I often found myself wishing that I had more offense to play around with, and as the final battle proved, equipping even the Light Axes catastrophically increased the damage output of my two Fighters. I guess that the game's creators planned for you to use weapons to fight your battles, imagine that!

Now one of my most important conclusions from that game was that it is possible to fight even the most difficult battles in Final Fantasy with virtually no offense whatsoever. With enough Absorb, elemental resistances from either the Ribbon or WALL spells, and a constant influx of healing, your party essentially cannot be hurt. The Iron Fists took forever to kill anything, but they were almost never in any danger whatsoever. Their focus on defense often turned the game into more of a tedious chore than anything else (not that I didn't love the guys in their own way, of course).

So let's try something different for my next game. The Iron Fists were all about defense, so I'll turn that on its head and go for an all-out offensive variant to see just how viable that is in the later stages of the game. Thus the concept was born for the Berserkers (Zerks for short), who have one and only one variant rule holding them back:

1) No character can ever equip any armor of any kind.

That simple rule will completely change the nature of the game, much like the simple rule of the Always War variant in Civ3 results in a hugely different experience. The Zerks are going to ignore defense completely and try to win through massive, overbearing, ridiculously overkill damage output from the four warriors. I'm still playing through this game at the moment (as I juggle many other current projects), but I'll leave this teaser image of the party for now:

There will be more information at a later date; when, I myself don't know.

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So... that's what I wrote several years ago. I did play out most of the zerks quest, and it was a lot of fun. But I never got around to finishing the journey, or writing up the story for my website. Fortunately, T-Hawk was inspired by my effort and did take the concept out to its conclusion. Thus, to read about the true journey of the Berzerkers, I direct you now to his website: T-Hawk's Final Fantasy Site