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The Bug That Almost Ruined Final Fantasy 6

"Final Fantasy" is one of the most significant JRPG properties of all time. "Final Fantasy 6" is arguably one of the best games in the series (and one we'd like to see get a remake). It was the first title in the franchise to juxtapose magic against a world of industrial machinery, which went on to become a trademark of nearly all the entries that came after it. The story centers on a large cast of fourteen playable characters as they band together to stop an international conflict involving magical weapons of mass destruction that threaten to destroy the entire world. 

Each of the playable characters has their own backstory and their own motivations for fighting. They also have special command abilities, giving them a unique feel in battle. Locke can steal, Edgar can use tools, and Terra can morph into an Esper, giving her enhanced stats. The character Relm has a unique skill called Sketch. She paints a picture of a foe which then comes to life and uses one of the creature's own attacks against it. It's a handy skill to have and interesting to use as a player since the effect changes with nearly every encounter. It also occasionally breaks the entire game.

Sketch is super sketchy

The Sketch bug is well documented and one of the most notorious errors in "Final Fantasy." All it takes to trigger it is for Relm to either miss the target she's trying to sketch or to fail at sketching a more complex target. It occurs most often when she attempts to sketch enemies who are invisible. This can produce various effects ranging from morphing the character sprites into Missingno-style pixelated cubes and filling the player's inventory with random items to causing the game to crash and even erasing all game data.

It sort of makes sense that Sketch would be a little bit glitchy. It's easily the most complicated special ability in the game from a design standpoint as it requires the replication of nearly every creature the heroes could fight. "Final Fantasy 6" does this by having the Sketch ability load data from the monster being targeted. That means failing to hit the target causes the game to load data from the wrong parts of the game which in turn causes a variety of glitches to occur.

Some players on Reddit who were lucky enough to have their inventory filled with items they could sell even look back on it fondly, but those who had all of their save files deleted are somewhat less nostalgic. Fortunately, this bug only exists on the original SNES 1.0 version of the game. The later 1.1 version and all subsequent releases have patched it out.