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Final Fantasy VIII

This is the scene where you swear your undying hatred for me!
Quote by: Seifer

Triple Triad

On this page, you can read everything about the Card Game in Final Fantasy VIII, called Triple Triad. The card Game is a mini-game you've never seen. Throughout the course of the game, you can collect special cards based on the minor enemies, Bosses, Guardian Forces and major Characters from Final Fantasy VIII. With your deck, you can challenge almost anyone to a game of cards. By playing the card game, you can refine the won or found cards into valuable and rare items.

Getting Started

To play a game of cards, you need to have at least five cards in your deck. You can get five free level 1 cards from a person in Balamb Garden at the start of the game, he's waiting for you on the second floor near the elevator, when you exit the classroom. However, it's a good idea to get some more advanced cards first. Once you obtain the Card Ability from Quezacotl, you can get more cards by turning enemies into Cards. The best way to get good cards early, is to learn the Card Ability before going to the Fire Cavern. Once you defeat Ifrit, and get his card, spend time turning Bombs into cards. Get about five of them, and you should be OK. You can also get a Krysta card from Buels on a rare occasion. But it is rare. To turn your enemy into a card, they must be under 1/2 their HP, so weaken them before you attempt to turn them into a Card. On the left is the empty Triple Triad Board, on which your Card Game will take place.

To challenge someone to a game of Cards is easy. Approach a person in normal fashion and press . If the person is a card player, he'll most likely accept your challenge. If not, they'll converse with you normally. If you've been given an assignment or a mission, it's best to wait to play cards on your own free time. The Garden looks down on SeeD's that goof off while on assignments. There is no such thing as too many of one card. If you don't want it, it's best to use the Card Mod Ability to turn your extra cards into items and use or sell them for Gil.

The Basics

The game board is divided into nine squares. You get to choose five cards from your deck to play and the other player will do the same. The object of the game is to turn as many of the opponents cards over. In the beginning, the rules make it pretty easy to do this. However, when the game progresses, you will find different rules that will make this a very challenging game to play. The biggest challenge Triple Triad presents is the always-changing set of rules. So, while it may seem like a good idea to always play your best hand, many times this isn't the case.

When you start the game in Balamb Garden, the main rules will be: Open and Trade Rule 1. The Open rule means that both players can see each others cards. The Trade Rules are what you get at the end of the game if you win the match or the amount of cards you loose when you've lost the game. Trade Rule 1 means that if you win, you will get to choose 1 Card from the other player, and if you loose, you will loose 1 Card.


Seifer



Trauma
Now, let's take a look at a Card. You will see four numbers in the top left corner of the Card. These numbers vary from 1 to A and represents the sides of the Cards. So if we look at Seifer's Card, which is displayed on the right, the numbers are 6 (top), 4 (left), 9 (right) and A (bottom). If we use this card in the example below and place it under the Trauma Card, which is placed in the top left corner, the top 6 of Seifer's card will battle the bottom five of Trauma's Card. Since 6 is higher than 5, the Card will be flipped over and turn blue (your color). The A is the highest 'number' in the card game and thus it cannot be turned over. In this case, you have 9 (right) and A (bottom) left of Seifer's Card and only with a rare Card, the 9 can be topped to turn it over. So it's useful to make full use of your cards and place them in corners with the weakest numbers to the blocked corners. This way, you'll have the biggest chance to win. Your GF and Character Cards are the best Cards in the game and you can easily overpower other cards with these rules. There are more rules, however.

Other Rules

Feeling you understand the basic rules? Let's look at some more rules. There are a lot of different rules in different area's and eventually, you may have to play with a lot of rules at the same time. The rules are spread into other regions as you travel. Players will ask you to play with both their rules and yours, so that's how the rules get spread. After playing a game with the mixed rules (or exiting it before you actually play the game and start over), some of the rules might be gone and you have to play with the rest. So if you start over after declining to play (you have to be in the main Card game though), some of the difficult rules might be gone! Some other rules are: Elemental, Sudden Death, Trade Rule: All, Trade Rule: Diff and Trade Rule: Direct

Elemental

If you look at the Card on the right, you will see a small icon in the top right corner. These are the Elemental icons. Some of the Cards, like Shiva's Card, have an elemental icon on it. In this case, it's the elemental Blizzard icon. On the Card Board, you may see these elemental icons too. If you look at the Board example above, you will see that there are four icons on the board: the top left, bottom left and bottom middle.

Shiva

When a Card with an elemental icon is placed on a space on the board with the same icon, the Card will get stronger by 1 point. If you don't have the same icon, or no icon at all, the Card will be weaker by 1 point. So if Shiva's card is placed on a Fire elemental icon. The 6 will become a 5, the 9 will become an 8, the 7 will become a 6 and the 4 will become a 3. So if you look at the example above again, you'll see that Trauma and Squall don't have an icon and they're placed on an icon field and so both of these Cards are weakened by one point, which is displayed by -1. An icon card placed on a grid with the same icon will state +1. So if you place the Shiva card on a Fire grid, she'll gain -1 and if the Trauma Card is placed below her, Shiva's Card will be turned over. In normal circumstances, nothing would happen, it would be (Shiva's bottom) 4 against (Trauma's top) 4. But since Shiva's Card is placed on a Fire icon grid, she gained -1 and her 4 became a 3 and her Card is turned over. So when you get into this rule, it is good to place a few elemental cards in your hand.
Sudden Death
Sudden Death means that the Card game will continue until one of the players win the game. All Cards that are turned over during the Card game, will remain with the player they're with. That will only affect the upcoming Card game, but only when one of the players wins, the Trade Rule will tell you which Cards you may or will take or loose.
Trade Rule: All
This Trade Rule means that if you win the Card game, you will automatically win all of the other players cards of your hand. This may seem very nice, but remember that if the other player wins, you will automatically loose all of your cards (that you are currently playing)
Trade Rule: Diff
This Trade Rule means that if you win the Card game, the difference between your turned cards and the players turned cards will determine how many cards you get to choose. So if you win the game with 7-3, you will take 4 cards, but if you loose with 8-2, you loose all cards and so on.

Behemoth
Trade Rule: Direct
This Trade Rule means that no matter who wins, every player takes the Card or Cards that has been flipped over during the game. The only time you do not get the Card you flipped over, if it is flipped back over by the opponent. Personally, I hate this rule, because sometimes, in order to win, you have to let the other player take over a Card so there are more options for you. And no matter how good your Cards are, there's always a possibility that one will be turned over. No, when I see this rule, I quit the Card game and try again, usually, the Trade Rule changes immediately.

Challenging Rules

When you play the game more, you will come across very challenging rules, that can make the game very difficult, but fun. These are rules though, you might not want to spread around the world. Those rules are: Random, Same, Plus and Same Wall.

These rules can pose a thread to even the most experienced players. Luckily, there are only a few times where you'll be forced to play with these rules: during the Card Queen Quest, when playing Edea, Selphie's friend in Trabia Garden, Piet and Ellone on the Lunar Base. Simply because you are playing to obtain a rare Card. To get the rules back to normal, return to Balamb Garden before Disc 3 or challenge Spade on the Ragnarok on Disc 4, keep declining the game (after you've seen the set of rules) until they stop asking to mix the rules. Otherwise, you will spread these rules. Here, let me explain to you how the rules work. Then see for yourself if you want to play them. I didn't say they cannot be beaten, but there's a lot more you have to deal with than just the basic Cards, their numbers and positions.
Random
Of all of the rules, this is the rule I hate the most. When this rule is used, your cards will be chosen automatically, so that can be any five Cards from your deck. You can either make sure you have only good Cards, but if you're a collector, like I am, you want to have all of the Cards, also weak ones. When truly weak Cards are chosen, you no longer have the ability to overpower the other player with stronger Cards. Usually, you only get one or two good Cards, or maybe not even one, all of the others are level 3 or lower. Good luck...


Fujin/Raijin
Propagator
Ruby Dragon

Same
The Same Rule means that you can flip two Cards over, if the numbers on the opposing Cards match the ones on your Card. If you look on the two examples on the left you will see that the grid in the middle is empty and the Ruby Dragon Card has a 4 on the left and the Fujin/Raijin Card has an 8 on the right. The Card we'll place in the middle is the Propagator, who has an 8 on the right and an 4 on the left, so the same numbers are facing each other. Therefore, you can flip both cards over. In this case, the left one is already ours, so only the Ruby Dragon flips over to the blue color. Also, if you flip a Card and it is adjacent to another Card with a lower number, a Combo will occur. Anytime there is a same effect, you can combo. So in this case, the Ruby Dragon Card is flipped over. If there was a Card above or below with a smaller number than 7 (top and bottom numbers of the Ruby Dragon), those will flip those over as well. The same is done with the next rule. I'm not saying it's easy, but with a little practice and paying attention to more stuff than just where to place high numbers, you'll become an expert in this rule in no time!





Mobile Type 8
Chubby Chocobo
Blitz

Plus
The Plus Rule means that if you add the numbers of the two opposing Cards together and that will be the same amount as your Card, those Cards will be flipped over. Sounds confusing? Let's take a look at the examples on the left. On the top left corner, you'll see the Mobile Type 8 Card and in the middle is the Blitz Card from the opponent. Now, we're going to place the Chubby Chocobo Card to the left of the Blitz Card, below the Mobile Type 8 Card. The bottom number of the Mobile Type 8 Card is a 7, the top number of our Card is a 4, the left number of the Blitz is a 7 also and the right number of our Card we're gonna place is also a 4. Seven plus four makes eleven, for both cards, the total number is 11! In this case, there's an elemental on the grid we're placing the Chubby Chocobo Card, so it'll get -1. The total numbers of both Cards will be 10, so still the same. Both Cards will be flipped over. And, the same effect that the Same Rule has, also counts for the Plus Rule: Combo. If there is a Card with a lower number adjacent to the Card that gets flipped, a Combo will occur. It is also worth mentioning that these Combo's can keep going on, meaning that all of the Cards on the board can be flipped over with the right set of Cards and numbers. All of the other numbers remaining on de other sides of the next Cards are lower than the one that gets flipped over. This could also mean that when you could be wining with like 8-2 and the opponent sets the last Card, he or she can make use of the Plus Rule and make Combo's until the entire board will be flipped over! Another thing to be very very careful with! The Plus Rule is even harder to master than the Same Rule, but you can do it! Take a good look at all of the available numbers. And if the Open Rule is available, make sure you check what the next move of your opponent may be to avoid such Rules to take their effects!





Malboro
Pandemona

Same Wall
The Same Wall Rule is similar to the Same Rule, but it uses the wall of the board too, which is the equivalent of A. So in this case, if you look on the examples on the left, you can see the Pandemona Card next to the Malboro Card. The right number of the Malboro Card, a 7, is the same as the left number of the Pandemona Card, also a 7 and the Malboro Card still flipped over. Why? Because the two 7's are a match and the A of the Wall is a match with Pandemona's top A. You don't really have to worry about this Rule, since most of the opponents don't have any Rare Cards. Only the Rare Cards and the PuPu Card have A's. Therefore, you can use this rule to your advantage! However, when you are playing the Card Queen on Disc 4, be aware, since she does have Rare Cards and she likes to use this rule!

It would be possible that there is a Plus Wall, but I haven't really seen it or tried it. The rules would be the same as the Same Wall, but instead of the numbers needing to match, the totals of the numbers would need to match for the Card to turn over.


This is all I can tell you about the Rules of Triple Triad Card Game. When you have just started, it may seem like a very frustrating game, but you need to get used to it at first. Once you know your way around, you may not get to stop playing! I really enjoy this game and I think it's the best Card game of all of the Final Fantasy games! Enjoy!

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