Between Late 2009 and early 2010, my parents and I were on our way home from grocery shopping, and on the way we had passed one of those Bargain Bin shops (you know, where they sell used and old antique stuff? Well yeah). Anyways, we decided to stop and have a look, I for one was hoping that they had carried some video games. There were a few good ones that I can list that were for Xbox 360: Call of Duty Modern Warfare, Viva Pinata, Halo 3, and a few other games I can't seem to remember.
But there was one that just seemed to catch my eye at the moment; there was a game in a plastic case. It was a white CD, (I know what you're thinking, you think that the disc had been written on in permanent marker, but it wasn't) it had Chrome text on it that read: BETA FINAL FANTASY XIII. I know this wasn't an original copy of the game, because this game had just come out at the time, so that was impossible. So I knew it had to be a bootleg, or someone put a Final Fantasy sticker on it—well that's what it seemed like anyway. I told my parents that this was the game that I wanted, so they paid for it and we were on our way.
As soon as I got home I wanted to play it, well since this game also just came out at the time, so like other gamers, I decided to put it in my 360 and play it. The game seemed to work like a charm; the only thing that looked different was Lightning and Fang. Lightning looked like she did in her original model, and Fang was male, just like they intended it to be in the original concept. At this moment, I knew that this was the original game they intended to make, rather than making any changes to it. So at this point, I was really ecstatic, well mainly because I had the original copy.
Funny thing is, the game was supposed to be on 3 discs, yet this was only on 1. So I think at the time, Square intended to compress the game so that it would only fit on one single disc, much like the PS3 version. It didn't bother me, so I shrugged and continued playing. The story's concept was totally different from what I read about it being.
I mean, the planet's name wasn't called Gran Pulse, it was called Novus Partus (same name for it in the upcoming game Lightning Returns). Cocoon was still Cocoon though, but it looked somewhat different, It's shell was Chrome looking, just like the text that was on the disc, and the inner part that was supposed to be blue was red instead. Just about everything in this game looked totally different than what it was supposed to be this time around. The whole game was like the 2006-2007 version that was announced around that point.
The game did not even feature some characters that were major, including Hope, Sazh, Raines, Serah, Team NORA, and of course, Snow. The game only featured 3 playable characters: Lightning, Fang, and Vanille. Fang and Vanille were a couple in this game, unlike the game that's out now, which had them as sisters and whatnot. I played through the story for seemed like days, after finally reaching Chapter 11 (before I continue, I just want to say that in this version there are no Eidolons at all).
I noticed something different about Gran Pulse. Err, I mean Novus Partus. It wasn't bright and cheerful like in the current game; it was dark and rainy, with thunder and lightning. The sky had a red tint to it, like it was a heat storm of some sort. There were Giant Titans roaming everywhere—and I mean everywhere. If you got too close to them, they would pick you up and slam you into the ground, and when this happened, that's when things start to get disturbing.
First off, when he picks you up an then slams you, Lightning, Fang, or Vanille's body would look like it had been crushed with a cruncher from a junkyard. There would also be a pool of blood lying next to the character each time it happens. Not only that, you could see spine bones poking out of their back too. Continuing on, there were also Behemoths, except that they were the size of a Long Gui, and that is fucking huge.
There was also a World Map for this chapter, much like the FFVII map, except it had a ton of towns you could explore, and a ton of exploring you could do in the cities. There were also dungeons, and caves, and you don't want to hear about the caves. The caves in this game are fucking horrifying. Each time I would enter a cave, it would be pitch black, and you couldn't see shit. In this one cave I was in, well, let me tell you this horrifying story, this is where the Creepypasta begins, except that this is a real Creepypasta.
As I moved through the cave, I could hear the sound of water thumping against the ground, much like a faucet. I could also hear growling, like something was about to just jump out and bite my characters fucking head off, but that wasn't the case, no, it gets much worse than that. I found a chest inside the cave, (yes there were chests originally in the game) and it had a flashlight in it, so I used it so I could see in the cave a little better, and to my horror, when I turned that goddamned flashlight on, I could have fucking sworn I seen Sephiroth.
The guy looked exactly like him, except he had a sword in his hand with blood dripping off the tip. I went closer and thought I could try to talk to him, and to my surprise, I could! Turns out that he was originally a part of the story, and that this cave was a major side quest in the game. When I spoke to him, Sephiroth said:
"Be not scared, as I can help you on your journey."
In this side quest, you are supposed to escort Sephiroth to an old airship that crash landed on a beach in Novus Partus, and doing so gives you a Gold Chocobo as a reward. But once you complete the mission, at that very fucking moment, the screen goes completely black, the Xbox is off, and everything.
I was angry at the time, so I decided to get some sleep. The next morning I woke up and decided to play some more. But when I turned it on, It went back to the same part I was on before, right before it turned off. I shrugged it off and continued playing. I decided to ride the Gold Chocobo that I was rewarded with, and I rode it until I came across another cave. But, in this cave, there was dead fucking silence; nothing, all I could hear was Lightning and the gang breathing.
I continued onward through the cave, until I came across what seemed to scare the living crap out of me. I had found another chest, but this time when I opened it, it was the fucking head of Sephiroth's -- his head was in that fucking chest. and I'm like, "Didn't I just escort him to his ship?" Turns out that wasn't Sephiroth, that was another guy dressed as him, guess that explains the blood on the sword huh? And I know you're all thinking, "What the fuck is Sephiroth doing in this game?" Believe me, I was thinking the same thing, at the time.
After seeing the head, a cutscene triggered. Lightning, Fang and Vanille all started screaming and then all cut into a conversation, I wrote the text down from the subtitles:
Lightning: Who the hell was that?
Fang: I don't know, but I feel as if something bad is about to happen.
Vanille: Fang, please protect me, I don't want to die!
Lightning: Calm down, both of you, I'll tell you what were gonna do, let's head for the ship, then we can get back to Cocoon.
Fang: Sounds like a plan to me.
The cutscene was over, and then it put me back in the position of my character Lightning. There was a marker on the map, and text on the bottom of the screen read: "Head for the ship!" so I just kept going until I got to the ship, and this is when things go from creepy, to fucking scary. When I got to the ship, it told me to go inside, I had to explore my way through, until I found the control room.
As before in the cave, it was pitch black, all I could see was Lightning and her crew, so I turned on the flashlight and looked around for a bit until I found the control room. The ship had no power to it, so when I got to the captain's seat where Lightning usually sits, there was a fucking C'ieth that had Sephiroth's head on it.
That fucking smile he showed, that fucking smile. It was so fucking creepy, I shat out bricks (I know this is starting sound a bit cliche at this point, but I'm just stating what I saw). What scared me the most though, is that it talked. it said something like:
"You can't forgive yourself unless you forgive me."
Then the screen tuned red, it had black text that said "Be not forgiven, as I have forgiven your soul."
Sephiroth's head appeared on the screen, then my Xbox RROD. I took the disc out and threw it in the trash. I then later bought the actual game and became quite pleased, so whatever you do kids, please don't buy a bootleg copy of a game from a Bargain store.,