Love Triple Triad? Did you know there was a physical version?

Triple Triad was pretty great, wasn’t it? It was probably one of the best things about Final Fantasy VIII. Certainly much better than Tetra Master. Not that Final Fantasy IX‘s minigame was bad, but clearly Square Enix saw it had something good with Triple Triad, and then attempted to do it again. There’s no substitute for the original!

Something Square Enix clearly realized. After all, it’s Triple Triad that was added to Final Fantasy XIV and the Final Fantasy Portal app yesterday. (Take that, Tetra Master!)

But, as you played those digital copies, did you ever realize you could also have been playing it with friends in the real world? It absolutely was. Back when Final Fantasy VIII launched in 1999, Square and Bandai worked together to release a 110 card set. Which meant you could actually own every card in the game. There was a play mat and everything.

Unfortunately, the Triple Triad cards were incredibly rare. Packs were only available in Japan. They also appeared in an age when importing wasn’t as popular as it is today. The only reason I managed to get 24 cards of my own is because a small toy stores resided in Mitsuwa Plaza at the time, and I recognized these prized gems among the other collectible cards on display.

Nerd moment: I used to carry these old cards in my purse in high school, because of Final Fantasy VIII, and I was tempted to do so again after rediscovering them in an old jewelry box.

The tragedy is, if you want some, you’re probably not going to be able to get any. The idea isn’t impossible, but highly impractical as real Triple Triad cards can be so expensive now. It’s a shame because they really were a neat keepsake.

Wouldn’t it be great if Square Enix released an entirely new, updated set now that the minigame is a part of Final Fantasy XIV?

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