Pretty much an echo of my experiences!
I seem to remember a lot of older JRPGs making MP regenerating items either expensive and rare to the point that I was reluctant to use them at all and ended up with tons at the end of the game.
Still, I also remember refining an FF8 card into 99 megalixirs; Made the last fight a little easy...
Although I found (in FF7), tents were a great MP restorer and not too pricey.
The best thing Square has done in recent years is find ways to remove MP from its games.
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