The first sesssion was pretty much just the opening missions in Luca and Mt. Gagazet. I had forgotten how much fun Paine and Rikku seem to be having in that first fight scene, in the stadium. Then today I did the mission in Besaid, then visited Kilika, Luca, and the Mi'ihen Highroad. Doing all the missions, talking to as many NPCs as I can stand. So far so good! And I haven't died yet, which considering that I'm not doing New Game Plus is pretty good.
I'm noticing little things, like Lulu's serenity, and just how irritated Rikku is with her brother. Buddy, too; he also seems exasperated with Brother and his crush on Yuna. And you know I have an eagle eye on the tiny hints they're already dropping regarding Paine's backstory. One thing I'm making a point of doing is talking to Paine and Rikku every time I come back to the ship from someplace new. And there are some neat tidbits from there. Like after the visit to Kilika, where we meet Dona and Barthello and get a glimpse into their relationship problems. On the return to the ship, Rikku expresses concern that they might break up. But Paine claims not to care about anyone "going steady" and calls it "kid stuff." And then, after your stroll down the Highroad, Paine comments that she's glad to have left before dusk, since she doesn't like the sunset there. Gee, Paine, that might not be related to any bad memories or anything. I have to say, I was kind of surprised to see something that blatant, although of course neither the new player nor Yuna would have the context to understand what it means.
I'd also forgotten how divided the town of Kilika was. In my head it's a Youth League stronghold, but several of the townspeople express divided loyalites -- it's not just Dona and Barthello.
Part of me is really impatient to get to the juicy CS3 stuff, but I also really want to take this slowly, in order, and watch things develop. We'll see how long I hold out. ;)