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FF6 is actually a game that I've beaten, even though I'm not a huge FF fan. You don't want to focus on a single strong party though, but instead you want to level up all of your characters. Anyway, here is my view on the characters:

Tina Best character in the game. Her ability to change shape combined with the right equipment makes her ultra-powerful.

Locke Locke is alright. Some people say that he potentially the most powerful character in the game, but I only found him to be ok. Might be worth using him to steal items from bosses.

Edgar: Edgar is a good fighter, and he stays a good fighter. Useful through the game

Sabin Another good fighter. I found him to be better than Edgar early game, while Edgar inches out later on.

Shadow Failed to save him, so I don't know

Cyan Cyan looks like he might be a stellar character, but he is quite bad. Why? Well, his special ability takes so much time to prepare that by the time any of the more powerful moves are ready, you would have been able to attack several times with your other characters, which would have been more useful.

Celes Celes is similar to Terra in her use, and while she is worse late-game, her ability to block magic still makes her quite useful. You just need to make sure that you don't block your own spells.

Gau Too random to be good. Sometimes he will do well, quite often he won't. I did not like him.

Gogo Hard to find. Gogo can be used for some cheesy moves, and at some points in the game he is useful, but I found more annoying than anything else.

Umaro Too random. I found him to be good at exactly one place in the game, and at best tolerable at others.

Relm Best magic stats in the game makes her useful. Can be a bit annoying to use as she is squishy, but she is one of those characters that will shine late-game (though not because of her special move)

Stratgo Blue mage. Might be good, but I've always found blue mages too annoying to be worth the time, so i can't comment on him.

Setzer Another random character. He "might" be very powerful, but there is also a big chance that he'll be useless. Can be upgraded with a skill that makes him throw money instead of using his random skill, but it does not deal enough damage to be good.

Mog Ugh, why did they feel the need to have so many random character? Mog is too unreliable to be good. Dance is also dependent on where you are, and using a dance for an area that you are not in has a relatively high fail-chance, but enemies will often have some resistance against their "local" element.
Though I admit most skills in this game are useless, the characters are much too different due to the equiment they can wear, and this is what makes FF6 amazing to me: you can have fun playing it without knowing the true potential of any of the characters. In the WoR, we gain access to some obscene equipment that absolutely break the game. A few random facts and tips:

- Setzer with Fixed Dice + Offering absolutely obliterates everything in his path.
- Mog and Gau with Snow Muffler can max their def and take no physical damage.
- Terra, Edgar and Celes may become almost impossible to hit with the right equipment, due to the possibility of obtaining 128+ M. Block.
- Merit Award allows Gau to equip weapons and become the famous "Wind God Gau".
- Even your most useless characters can be turned into Imps and with the right set of equipment, become a force to be reckoned with. Cyan and Mog are good candidates.
- I find Umaro quite fun to use when you have both his relics...and both Sabin and Gogo suck in the WoR, but Bum Rush saves their asses.
- When you get Mog, get the Moogle Charm right away, don't forget it there! With it you can go early to Kefka's Tower, get some of the best equips of the game like Fixed Dice and Minerva, and them run away from there very easily.
- Try to steal from enemies whenever possible with Locke. I can't recommend this enough, as some enemies carry very good gear.
- Most of the items I mentioned above can be obtained in the Coliseum. Spend a little time reading about it if you feel like it, and many paths will open to you.
- The Tower of the Fanatics has a nice prize at the end, I'd recommend not skipping it.
- There's a relic that brings the MP cost of every spell to 1. Just so you know ;)

But you can go on without worrying about anything in this list and still find the end game very enjoyable, I know I did the first time around. Although I love FF7, to give an example, I can't help but think the only thing that changes from character to character is just looks (and limit breaks, but Cloud's limits destroy everyone else's and that's not funny).
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Sogi-Ya: I honestly never finished the game, got to the boss and had my party wiped by his third version ... said fuck it I don't really care what happens.
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Elmofongo: Spoiler

Great I killed Shadow :(

How was I suppose to know that the clock had to be at 00:05 for him to arrive, infact how was anyone suppose to know that?!
I think everyone loses Shadow on his first play-through. I'm personally OK with it, though; if you ditch your teammate on a floating continent as its exploding, with no way off, he dies. If you wait for him, he doesn't. It can be frustrating, but it's so perfectly sensible that I can't get upset.
Post edited May 19, 2013 by BadDecissions
Any character in Final Fantasy 6 would be plenty powerful if you level them up, but the best ways to improve them is through equipment and Espers. The espers not only teach spells to characters, but also give stat bonuses when a character levels up, so if you keep your levels low and get the right esper, you can increase the abilities of characters by a fair bit. Odin is the only Esper that increases speed, but can be transformed into Raiden. This means that you should train with Odin before switching it into Raiden.

The X-Magic and X-Fight accessories are incredibly broken, because your characters perform their actions multiple times. If I remember right, it is possible to make characters do physical attacks up to eight times, by using a Genji Glove and an Offering, then equipping two weapons.

Also, there are spells that can change the rules of battles. For example, Invisibility makes you immune to regular attacks, but spells become 100% accurate. I recall this fact being particularly useful when you can get to Behemoth Island, where you can cast the Death spell and instantly kill the Behemoths for lots of XP and coin. The Reflect spell has an property where if a spell bounces off one reflect spell, it would pass through another. You can cast Reflect on your own characters and then cast spells onto them, which in turn would reflect the spell and let it pass through an enemy's reflect spell.
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Elmofongo: Spoiler

Great I killed Shadow :(

How was I suppose to know that the clock had to be at 00:05 for him to arrive, infact how was anyone suppose to know that?!
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BadDecissions: I think everyone loses Shadow on his first play-through. I'm personally OK with it, though; if you ditch your teammate on a floating continent as its exploding, with no way off, he dies. If you wait for him, he doesn't. It can be frustrating, but it's so perfectly sensible that I can't get upset.
I am sorry to ask this question, but where is the ancient castle in the world of ruin, tell me where it is on the map:

http://home.eyesonff.com/site_content/images/ff6/maps/ff6-worldofruin-siggied.png
I hope you're all happy, now I have to play this game through again.
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Elmofongo: I am sorry to ask this question, but where is the ancient castle in the world of ruin, tell me where it is on the map:

http://home.eyesonff.com/site_content/images/ff6/maps/ff6-worldofruin-siggied.png
http://www.snesmaps.com/maps/FinalFantasy3/FinalFantasyIIIOverworldRMap.html
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Elmofongo: I am sorry to ask this question, but where is the ancient castle in the world of ruin, tell me where it is on the map:

http://home.eyesonff.com/site_content/images/ff6/maps/ff6-worldofruin-siggied.png
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ErekoseDM: http://www.snesmaps.com/maps/FinalFantasy3/FinalFantasyIIIOverworldRMap.html
OK I know where it is,but how do I get inside?
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Elmofongo: OK I know where it is,but how do I get inside?
ripped outta the gamefaqs by Djibriel:

"
Make your team and fly the Falcon over to Figaro Castle, which is probably
on the Kohlingen side of the sea at this point. Send it over to the Figaro
desert, and it will reach a bumpy part of the journey where the old man
piloting the castle will ask you if you want to investigate. Boy, do we ever.

Walk over to the dungeons, where the hole the sandworm that freed the Crimson
Robbers created is still present. You can use it exit the castle and enter the
caves leading to the Ancient Castle.
"
Remember to save before you enter your airship in the WoR. There's a boss that can be randomly encountered on the airship that can easily wipe your party early on. The upshot is that killing it nets you some nice stuff, and it won't respawn.
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Jekadu: Remember to save before you enter your airship in the WoR. There's a boss that can be randomly encountered on the airship that can easily wipe your party early on. The upshot is that killing it nets you some nice stuff, and it won't respawn.
You mean Deathgaze? I slayed him and got Bahamut as a result.
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BadDecissions: I think everyone loses Shadow on his first play-through. I'm personally OK with it, though; if you ditch your teammate on a floating continent as its exploding, with no way off, he dies. If you wait for him, he doesn't. It can be frustrating, but it's so perfectly sensible that I can't get upset.
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Elmofongo: I am sorry to ask this question, but where is the ancient castle in the world of ruin, tell me where it is on the map:

http://home.eyesonff.com/site_content/images/ff6/maps/ff6-worldofruin-siggied.png
Burrow under the ground with Figarro, you'll ram right into it.
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Elmofongo: I am sorry to ask this question, but where is the ancient castle in the world of ruin, tell me where it is on the map:

http://home.eyesonff.com/site_content/images/ff6/maps/ff6-worldofruin-siggied.png
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BadDecissions: Burrow under the ground with Figarro, you'll ram right into it.
I DID IT, I BEAT THE GAME!!!

What an adventure that was, and it was a good story.......but other things really fall hard.

IMO after the first half of the game, the second half really fall with the story in the sense that after you get the airship, you can either fight Kefka now, or do everything else first, and to some degree I felt detached after re-recruiting everyone and such and doing other side-quest.

Now gameplay, which to me this game is a mixed bag, this game has way too many characters, most of which are uslees, Cyan is good, but toppled by Sabin, Strago's Blue Magic is useless compared to the white, black, and time magic you can get anyway.

Also this game gets way to easy once you get that relic which all spells cost 1 MP and spam the Ultima/Quick combo along with the master scroll/Genji gloves on Sabin and I am basically invincible.

Also from my experiance with playing the GBA verision on an emulator, this game is WAY to slow in combat, slower than Final Fantasy 4, thank goodness for the emulators speed button or I would get bored and give up on the grinding.


Now so far I am being hard on it, but there are really good things that makes me forgive the grips, it was very cinematic with a lot of setpiece moments and the music is spectacular and its atmosphere, and story is also incredibly deep and stakes were high.


So now I beaten 3 final fantasies straight so I came to a interesting conclusion:

Final Fantasy 1: More Gamplay, Less Story

Final Fantasy 4: A Balance between gameplay and story

Final Fantasy 6: Less Gameplay More Story
Congratulations! The second half of the game was my first contact with nonlinearity--go and do whatever. As a result I'll always love it, although of course you're quite right that the story grinds to a halt. And yes, there are definitely too many characters--from a gameplay perspective, as you mention, but also from a story perspective, as characters like Mog, Relm, and Strago never really integrate into the story. Later games cut down on the number of characters, with good results.
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BadDecissions: Congratulations! The second half of the game was my first contact with nonlinearity--go and do whatever. As a result I'll always love it, although of course you're quite right that the story grinds to a halt. And yes, there are definitely too many characters--from a gameplay perspective, as you mention, but also from a story perspective, as characters like Mog, Relm, and Strago never really integrate into the story. Later games cut down on the number of characters, with good results.
All there is left to do is challange the Kaiser Dragon which is this games optional superboss along with Omega Weapon.

But so far the hardest superboss in final fantasy is Final Fantasy 7 and 12.