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Round ThreePoll3497 Thursday, May 28th, 2009

Ulti's Analysis[]

Poll 3497
Round Division 1995-1997 Final
Match # 52
Match Date Thursday, May 28th, 2009
Final Fantasy VII - 35.42%
Super Mario 64 - 26.46%
Chrono Trigger - 22.33%
GoldenEye 007 - 16.06%
FF7 first place (8pts) - 67.45%
FF7 second place (4pts) - 9.74%
Mario 64 second place (8pts) - 28.20%
Mario 64 first place (4pts) - 6.45%
Final Fantasy VII - 77.19% (29,561)
Super Mario 64 - 34.65% (13,270)

This match was more or less a continuation of the Mario 64/CT round 2 match, but with different games stealing votes. Chrono Trigger needed a complete miracle to pull this off, in the form of not getting hammered by Final Fantasy 7 while Goldeneye leeched Mario 64 half to death -- it also needed weird SFF from Yoshi's Island's votes, to the tune of CT getting like 80% of the votes from SNES SFF in round 2 while Mario 64 got next to nothing.... from a fellow Mario game. Yeah.

The funny thing here is Chrono Trigger almost did manage to pull this thing off. Mario 64 jumped out to a 140 vote lead in 25 minutes, but erased the entire thing 20 minutes later. It then built up a 600 vote lead overnight, with Mario 64 doing little stall-wise. For six hours, everything Chrono Trigger needed fell right into place. It wasn't getting 40% on FF7 like it did in 2004, but it was only a couple of percentage points behind in spite of Final Fantasy 7 dominating this match. FF7 ended up with 41% in a poll with two top ten (and possibly top five) games and a game in the 15-20 range in Goldeneye. All contest long, FF7 and Ocarina were a gigantic cut above everyone else, to the point of laughable results. If we ever get another games contest, I think most people would support a Tournament of Champions style where FF7 and Ocarina are removed from the main bracket and other games are given an opportunity to be paper champions.

Chrono Trigger was also enjoying a clear case of Goldeneye leeching Mario 64 a lot, as evidenced by Mario being totally unable to stall CT on its way to building a 600 vote lead. But just like round 2, everything fell apart when the morning vote showed up. The 600 vote lead became 100 in just a couple of hours, and it took one hell of an effort from Chrono Trigger during the DSV (as well as a lot of N64 leeching) to prevent Mario 64 from opening a can all over the poll.

Chrono hung tough for a damn long time, even using the second half of the DSV to build its lead back to 300 votes. Right about here is where CT fans let hope turn into expectation, and right about here is where CT predictably fell apart. Chrono Trigger's ASV failures are well documented, and this match was no different. That 300 vote lead it worked so hard to get turned into 0 in all of 30 minutes, and we all know what happened from here. Mario dominated the ASV, then hung on tight in the evening to secure a 1337 vote win. Nice final number.

This wasn't the horribly embarrassing ASV collapse that led to a 3200 vote loss in the previous round, but it was an ASV collapse nonetheless. Everything Chrono Trigger needed to see line up happened, and it still was not enough to win. It held up on an FF7 that hadn't lost a beat since 2004, it saw Goldeneye put a huge log on Mario's path -- enough to make a nearly 2000 vote difference from the last match -- and yet it still predictably and sadly fell apart once kids came home from school. For whatever reason, Chrono Trigger has turned the ASV collapse into an art form. Can you imagine how a 1v1 match between Magus and Master Chief would go?

This match set up a very interesting FF7/LTTP/Mario 64 trio. As good as LTTP was to this point in winning three matches, it seemed just a tad bit off compared to how well Mario was doing this contest. And because of two game contests featuring generational gaps, we'd never seen a match between 2D Zelda versus 3D Mario with both games nearly even in strength. FF7 was the obvious first place there, but LTTP vs Mario 64 was shaping up to be a very good match. This was especially true given the insane Mario 3/Mario World/Zelda 1 match that would go down one day prior.

Match Trends[]


Ngamer's Same Day Analysis[]

Match Prediction[]

Very excited for this one! After GE completely redeemed itself in R2 it sure looked like tonight was going to be dullsville; Goldeneye could very well give Mario a run for its money, but they'd be duking it out in a distance third. Boy did the following day ever change that outlook! I think Mario 64 > CT is still the biggest shocker of the season in my mind, only because there was ANOTHER MARIO in the room. (Seriously, that shouldn't even have been close to possible!) But since we now know that these days Mario can punch Crono in the mouth even with a major disadvantage, a Mario advancement ought to be a straight up lock considering how there's going to be another Square RPG hanging around tonight. Right?

Not so fast, my Lee Corso!

I think GE is being quite unfairly underestimated here. The game's got nostalgia through the roof, a very dedicated fanbase, and it stands out like crazy here both as the only multiplayer option (something that was HUGE in determining the N64 totem pole- just ask MK64!) and in that match pic. People are being way too quick to assume that M64 beats it into paste- GE's sales were just as good as those of the console's flagship title here in America, and I'd argue there's a chance its overall playrate on this site could likewise be just as high, considering how EVERYONE got in on some GE multi action back in the day, even if you didn't have your own N64. We've already seen it hold up better directly against Ocarina, and just being "freaking MARIO" doesn't necessarily make you the alpha dog of any system post-NES; if you don't believe me ask Galaxy! Taking all this into account, I even picked FF7 > GE for this match in my initial gut bracket. And now I get to proudly say, sorry, got to tuck my tail between my legs and back down on that one. GE's got plenty going in its favor, but I just can't justify that upset in light of how every single FPS has cracked once serious pressure was applied so far this season (well except RE4, but let's see how it holds up in a few days) combined with how top tier Mario has got to be the year's #1 success story. I still say GE holds up very well, but yeah, I'm its biggest B8 fan and even I would be stunned if it were ever in serious contention to advance today beyond the first 15 minutes.

Does that mean GE will put up such a fight that CT is handed the free win over both N64 classics? Again, sorry, but I can't get behind that upset. The R2 stunner between these two was a huge wakeup call for Old School Square, but unfortunately it seems these RPGs just keep reaching out to slam the snooze button- FF4's showing was flat out pathetic, FF6 didn't improve on it nearly enough, and I refuse to bet against trends this crystal clear. I guess my only "daring" pick for tonight is a low low percentage from FF7. The early voters love all three other options so its sure to get a slow start, from there I don't think it dominates Europe all that badly overnight (GE was very popular over there), and as we've seen several times now this game doesn't have the ASV kick it once packed; have to imagine Mario looks best during that period. Plus as we've already covered I don't think N64 LFF will be anything close to devastating for Mario and GE, since their playrates aren't probably all THAT far back from those of Mario 3/SWM.

Long story short,

  • Final Fantasy VII - 34.22%
  • Super Mario 64 - 24.13%
  • Chrono Trigger - 23.90%
  • GoldenEye 007 - 17.75%

*but crosses fingers for an even better showing from GE!*

Next Day Review[]

Wow, alright, so I jumped the gun a little bit. Clearly I was wrong and FF7 is still very much in contention for the #1 position on this site; actually this performance is so impressive you could even make a good case for it having earned back its favorite status! Let's check the numbers. Hm... looking to finish with about 65.5% on CT directly, up from the 58 it managed five years ago. That's nice, but not exactly unexpected- between revenge votes and bandwagon votes and being the only Nintendo option and Finals in generally being screwy, CT had all kinds of reasons to overperform in that Championship match. What really wows me is that FF7 is going to end up with over 53% versus the N64's #2 and #3 options combined (plus over 65% on Mario alone)... and that despite (presumably) losing a decent number of votes to the other Square RPG in the poll. Good gracious! In other news, I'm a little surprised that Mario had so much more trouble putting CT away this round compared to last, but I'm just going to go ahead and chalk that up to GE's incredible SFF-resisting power. Look out MGS, GE will be gunnin' for ya in BGE 2011! Oh yeah and more good news: this was an incredibly popular poll, looks like it will finish with the 2nd biggest total so far this year... but I think tonight's will shoot even higher!

External Links[]

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2009 Spring Contest Matches

Round One
Tetris > Donkey Kong
MM2 > Pac-Man
SMB > Ninja Gaiden
Zelda 1 > Metroid
Sonic 1 > SFII
SMB3 > Monkey Island
S.Metroid > SMK
Zelda:LttP > DKC
FFVI > Zelda:LA
Sonic 2 > MKII
SM64 > SotN

CT > Yoshi's Island
Pokémon RBY > Zelda:MM
MGS > Pokémon GS
FFVIII > Starcraft
Zelda: OoT > FFIX
Diablo II > Halo
SSBM > Zelda:WW
Oblivion > ToS
MGS3 > WoW
Zelda: TP > Half-Life 2
CoD4 > SMG
MGS4 > Portal
Fallout 3 > Halo 3

Round Two
Tetris > MM2
SMB > Zelda 1
SMB3 > Sonic 1
Zelda:LttP > S.Metroid
FFVI > Zelda:LA
SM64 > CT
MGS > Pokémon RBY
Zelda:OoT > FFVIII
SSBM > Diablo II
MGS3 > Oblivion
Zelda:TP > RE4
MGS4 > Fallout 3

R3 and following
SMB > Zelda 1
Zelda:LttP > FFVI
Zelda:OoT > Pokémon RBY
Zelda:TP > RE4
FFVII > Zelda:LttP
Zelda:OoT > FFX
FFVII > Zelda:LttP
Zelda:OoT > FFX
Zelda:OoT > FFVII (Finals)
Zelda:OoT > FFVII (Bonus)