‘Final Fantasy IX’ HD mod gives the game a visual uplift

Final Fantasy IX HD Mod before and after comparison

Square Enix’s beloved RPG, Final Fantasy IX, may have already got an HD Remastered treatment when it got ported to other platforms. A process that significantly altered the way the game looks based on graphics smoothness, clarity, and display resolution.

But it seems that the game did not necessarily get a full HD treatment yet the way it did. Much that it took a mod to get the visual revamp the game truly deserves.

Everything’s Better When Clear

Dubbed the ‘Moguri Mod,’ these altered assets give the Steam version of Final Fantasy IX a needed visual makeover.

Not trying to delve deeper into the technical aspect. But it seems that the mod was made feasible primarily because of deep learning techniques (ERSGAN). A technique used to upscale visuals to bringing out their clearer renditions.

To those who are wondering whether the same mod works for other platforms, the answer is a ‘no.’ Given that modifying assets is easier on PC than on console, the mod is exclusive to the official Steam version only.

Meanwhile, the doctored assets are altogether massive, which requires a total of 11 Gigabytes of available space. It’s not necessarily an addition on top of Final Fantasy IX’s space requirement, as some might be overwritten. Nevertheless, the space requirement is still a lot.

When applied, the mod specifically alters the game’s often overlooked background images that typically appear blurred than the rest. But being neglected does not mean they do not add value when it comes to aesthetics if given the HD treatment.

While not necessarily as attention-grabbing as the game’s main event, seeing everything with vivid clarity does make a substantial change. Which is something that the mod clearly does show when making a side-to-side comparison with the original.

More Than a Year in the Making

Looking into the site of the mod, it seems that it has been a work-in-progress since as early as January 2019. When the mod saw an initial release with version 5.0.

Since then, the mod appears to have been rendered some subsequent updates until February 2019 with version 7.0.1.

After a long hiatus until today, an update appeared bearing a long list of amendments with version 8.0.1.

The changes may be trivial for some. However, those who are pleased with the idea find spending tens of hours again a worthwhile endeavor with the game’s fully enhanced graphics.

Image used courtesy of Candyland/YouTube

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