Cheez-It: breakfast of champions.
     Friday, June 22, 2001 "they made up their minds, and they started packing"     


Once again, my compliments to all of you for sending me plenty of good email. As such, I printed a lot of it, and wore myself and poor guest-host Traks out in the process. This column marks the end of my week-long stint taking over for Google, and I had a great time doing it. I've received a lot of compliments, even to the point of several of you saying you'd like me back. Best watch what you wish for, folks... Anyhow, here's Traks with his intro, and then on to today's letters. Oy!

Okay, first thing's first. If you would like my position as Q&A guest host, you can try sending me any one (or combination of) the following things:
  -Red Faction for Playstation 2
  -Twisted Metal Black for Playstation 2
  -Sonic Adventure 2 for Dreamcast
  -Lunar: Silver Star Story Complete for PSX
  -Super Dodge Ball Advance for GBA
  -Super Dodge Ball for NES
  -A Top Loading NES
Please, send all offers to

I finished Dark Cloud and sent Paws a review of it. Maybe someday you'll be able to read it. Shorty afterwards, I started playing Persona 2. I must say, playing this game is kind of like watching a sloth on valium. Lots of valium.

However, the story is top-notch, as is the story to Castlevania: Circle of the Moon. Of course, you can't actually see Circle of the Moon unless you have direct lighting of the sun itself. Even then, you have to take precaution not to blind yourself with the reflection, or to let the Game Boy Advance melt in your hands. Also make sure the reflection of UV rays from the screen of the GBA does not start your face on fire (or give you skin cancer).

Other than that, the Game Boy Advance is simply peachy.

On to the letters!

Games I'm Playing
Zelda: Oracle of Ages
Zelda: Oracle of Seasons
Rayman Advance
Konami Krazy Racers
Dance Dance Revolution
Last Five Columns
  • 06-21-01
  • 06-20-01
  • 06-19-01
  • 06-18-01
  • 06-17-01
    Guess the Quote Contest
    Everybody's favorite contest-of-sorts from RPGuides followed me to the letters column! Try to guess (be specific) the quote towards the top of the page. If you're the first one to email me with the correct answer, I'll mention you in the next day's column.

    Someone Set Us Up the Xeno-bomb

    "We don't have much time left. Let's go, to win ourselves true freedom! Shall we launch the Yggdrasil?"

    I'm sorry, is it just me or does this line from Xenogears sound very similar to a certain mistranslated introduction to a fly-by shoot'em game?


    Go Yggdrasil! For true freedom!

    Thank you, Magic Alex, for making me feel very nauseous.

    Yes, that definitely reminds me of something....


    Answer me this Aegis...

    I'm kinda confused on the numbers in final fantasy. I played FF3 and i learned that FF6 was the same thing in if i play japans FF3 is it different or the same? If not why did they make it again and call it FF6? (same goes for ff2/4)

    Okay, here's the deal. Japan's Final Fantasy (the first one) was brought over to the US back in 1990 as Final Fantasy; no indescrepancies there. The Japanese FF2 and FF3, both for the Famicom (the Japanese version of the NES), were never released in the US, so when it came time to bring Japan's SNES game FF4 over here, they called it Final Fantasy 2 as to not confuse people. Final Fantasy 5 wasn't translated, so Final Fantasy 6 was called FF3 in the US, as it was the third Final Fantasy that we actually received. If it weren't for the fact that FF7 was so hyped up and had so much name recognition in the US even before it came out, it probably would have been called Final Fantasy 4. Hope that clears things up for you.

    A real Scully and Mulder situation, if you ask me. The only thing I can add is that the second and third Japanese FFs (denoted by FF2j and FF3j, these were the ones for Famicon) weren't brought over here because Nintendo felt they were just more of the same from FF1.

    Ama-No, Sorry

    Aegis, or maybe Google,

    I know this is really late to be asking this since E3 has been over for quite some time, but did either of you get to meet Yoshitaka Amano? I saw on a website that he was supposed to be there, and was curious if he actually showed up.

    Sorry I don't have any real pertinent RPG questions. Wait, My sister wants to know if Imperial Mog could let her borrow her monks for an anime convention she is going to. She is going as Vampire Princess Miyu and she wants some monks.


    Well, I don't really know why you're partially addressing this to Google, but in this case, I can answer for our slimey friend. Nope, noone from the RPGamer staff met Amano. If he was supposed to be there, he probably was, but I certainly didn't see him among the masses. The chances of actually running into someone really prominent like that at E3 is pretty slim. My meeting Miyamoto was a 1/10000000 chance, or something to that effect.

    Imperial Mog, we are in need of monks. Can you heed the call?

    When I need monks, I just fire up Final Fantasy Tactics.

    Blast from Yesteryear

    What a glorious column last night!!! It covered every cool topic ever, I think, except for Spinal Tap. Sadly though, the column's final, brilliant stroke was to remind me that I forgot to tape South Park.

    Thanks for the praise. I, too, thought it was a pretty good column. Sadly, despite my closing statement, I missed "South Park." I thought it started at midnight, but it was actually 11:30. I arrived to a friend's place just as the show ended. Oh well.

    I can't @%&#ing believe you know "The Letter People"! My sis got into them twelve years ago in kindergarten, and we bought the audio cassette, and a couple of videos of the show. It really is quite funny and good - I showed it to some friends in like 10th grade and they were cracking up - they were laughing with it though, not at it.

    Yeah, "The Letter People" were cool. I can barely remember the show, but I can remember parts of the theme song, for some reason. Ah, memories.

    I have no idea what you guys are talking about when you say, "Letter People."

    I read that letter about the Zelda timeline in disbelief, and near disgust. Who says it's a different Link throughout the series? Why the hell is it a different Zelda in the 2 NES games, what's the use of that? I assume Ranklchick was completely factually what's going on?

    You've got to keep in mind that that timeline was just one person's interpretation of the Zelda timeline. I got quite a few letters trying to punch holes in it, but I'm not going to print any of them. I'm not trying to be stubborn, but I think the topic itself is far too easily subjected to opinion, and I don't think anybody could prove without a doubt that there's only one way to logically arrange the games. Moving on...

    The Links got too expensive for Nintendo, so they had to hire a new one every sequel. It's the only possible explanation, I tell ya.

    FF Chronicles I will not buy anytime soon - FF8 has wrecked my interest in Square for a good long while (I'm still playing it, final dungeon). Beat both already anyway.

    I'm sorry to hear that FF8 has scarred you. Don't try to hold too much of a grudge, though.

    Personally, I thought FF8 was an excellent game. Then again, I believe that I am exceptionally skilled at this particular game. I only used summons to see the actual animation, and only needed to see each one once. (Here's a quick hint to make FF8 incredibly easy. Get the Quistis Card, Card Mod it, then Tme-Mag Refine it and put the Triples on Squall's attack. Do this as early as possible, and the game loses all its challenge.)

    Non-RPGs being short in length generally doesn't bother me if it's pure gameplay. Most of many RPGs' dozens of hours of length come from random battles - but in other genres, the developers have to create new environment upon new environment with no long battles to pad the hours. It's satisfying in most cases - except for MGS - waaaaay too many cut-scenes, hardly any real beef. I think the game is crap, especially that BS "love can bloom at any time, even on the battlefield" storyline. The NES MG is far better.
    I haven't finished Metal Gear Solid yet (although I will before the sequel hits), but I think it's a darn good game. As for my take on games being too short, I'm not too picky. As long as I feel I got close to my money's worth, I won't complain. Replay value can go a long way, folks.

    I think the Metal Gear games are gold. I even enjoyed Metal Gear Solid, for Gameboy Color. The action is just too cool. As for RPGs and their length...It's not how much you put into each game, it's how much you get out of them.

    Thanks for reading.


    Portable RPG, Capcom-Style
    Hello, Q & A Master,

    I can't wait for Breath of Fire to come out for GBA.

    Signed with Fire Dragon's Blood,
    Dr. Thinker

    I can.

    What's wrong with BoF? I haven't had a chance to play it, but I hear it's pretty sweet. I commend you on your choice, doctor. Ignore Traks.

    Dan to the Rescue
    Sup' Aegis!

    In response to Vladius' question about Cactuar and Tonberry in Time Compression...well let's see...:::flips through giant notebook filled with game related information:::...Well, I have some bad news. It appears as if you've missed out on two GFs. The only GFs you can aquire are in Ultimecia's castle. The list goes like this:
  • Siren: Draw from Tri-Point
  • Leviathan: Draw from Trauma
  • Pandemona: Draw from Red Giant
  • Carbuncle: Draw from Krysta
  • Cerberus: Draw from Gargantua
  • Alexander: Draw from Catoblepas
  • Eden: Draw from Tiamat

    And on to the topic.

    Quite frankly, I've been excited as hell about Final Fantasy Chronicles ever since its rumors began back in December. Once it was officially announced I nearly wet my pants! So you know that I'm gonna' get it as soon as possible. The reason I'm so excited about FFC is because I'll finally be able to play FFIV and CT on a TV screen instead of a computer monitor (I know, I'm the devil, I use emulation). Plus, I'll finally be able to play the official translation FFIV hardtype (although J2e's is rather good). Not to mention those anime sequences in CT don't look too bad either!

    -Dan Highwind, who is eagerly awaiting FFC and the re-release of FFT in July.
  • Aegis:
    Well, there's the FF8 info that was requested yesterday. Thanks. And thanks to everybody else for not all mailing in about just that. This is one of I think two letters that covered this. I thought I'd be swamped with these...

    Dan's gonna buy FFC. Cool. I probably will, for old time's sake. I dunno. Too many things request my dollars' attention.

    If you wet yourself over game news, I would recommend DependsŪ before reading game news information.

    Don't worry about the emulation. Anyone that makes Funcoland lose money gets the self-satisfaction of having done something right. And besides, it gets you into heaven for sure, too.

    Importing Saga: the Shooter

    Hello, I trust that you are having a good day.

    Anyway... the mention of Panzer Dragoon Saga on the previous column promted me to write this letter. If my information is correct, a Panzer Dragoon game has been announced (at the last Spring Tokyo Game Show) for the X-Box. Is there any information further on it than that? While I liked all three of the previous games, I would much rather see a second RPG than another shooter. Panzer Dragoon Saga is undisputed as my favorite game; I am all too anxious to recieve a sequel.

    How could PDS be your favorite game when nobody in this hemisphere owns it? I heard there were only five thousand copies shipped. I don't know about the X-Box version, simply because the X-Box isn't a system I follow.

    Yeah, I remember hearing that PDS was produced in very short supply, but I bet this dude is one of the lucky few. The Xbox Panzer Dragoon game is a shooter, and not an RPG. Sorry.

    On a different note, is there a means to play import games on the PS2 as of yet? I know the first batch had no regional coding, does that apply to just DVDs or games as well? I am not quite sure how it works (though I do have one of those PS2s). I have been out of the States for a few months now as an exchange student to Japan. I was just wondering if I pick up Final Fantasy X before I come back in August will I be able to play it?

    Since I am somewhat into modchips (not to play illegal CD-R copies, oh no!), I'm pretty sure that they have one for PS2. I don't know what it can play exactly, but you should be able to find out at

    Traks is, well, on the right track. You need a mod chip to play a PS2 import.

    Thank you for your time.

    Bandiger      - Do you believe in True Love? -

    Danger on the Road

    Heya Aegis!

    I got my driver's license yesterday! Yay for me ^_^ Anyhow, on with the questions:

    Hi. Congrats on your license!

    1. What do you think is the most addictive RPG, regardless of whether it was good or bad? Mine was either Illusion of Gaia or FFIX. I beat FF in 6 days, but I just couldn't stop playing IoG even after I beat it!

    For me, it was Final Fantasy 3. I racked up about 24 hours in three days when I first rented it, which was pretty impressive considering that I was on vacation at my Grandma's and supposed to spend time with the family.

    Easily the most addictive RPG for me was Crack RPG. Oh wait, that wasn't a game. My answer doesn't change, though. Second place goes to Xenogears.

    2. About how many applications were sent in for the news position? I wanna know my chances of getting picked! Also, when will RPGamer stop accepting the apps? Oh wait, that was two questions, so I guess the next one would be...

    As of earlier today, the number of applicants was around 40, I believe. I think you can apply through midnight tonight.

    Collect the Power-ups! Avoid the Enemies! Don't do drugs!
    ...That's all I could find out for you.

    4. What do you think of FFXs new level-up system? I think it's just more menus to mess around with than I should be subject to. With every news article I read, this game sounds more and more like FFVIII, though I'll still buy the game ^_^

    I'm a bad, bad Q&A host; I've been so busy working (pizza delivery; it's a good job), writing these columns, and sleeping that I haven't been too up on the news last few days. Hence, although I've heard of this wacky new "Sphere" system for FFX, I really don't know anything about the specifics of it. I'll read up on it before my next column, though, and let you all know what I think.

    I think they could make the game characters into big clumps of wet hair and we still all would buy the game.

    5. I'm coming into possession of nearly $300 tomorrow. Should I buy Lunar 2, Grandia II, or a GBA w/ Castlevania: CotM?

       Lunar 2: 60 bucks
       Grandia II: 20 bucks (at WalMart)
       Game Boy Advance: 90 bucks
       Castlevania: CotM: 40 bucks
       Getting all of the above with your newfound cash: Priceless...... or about $210.

    If you don't want to spend all that much, though, I'd recommend the GBA and CotM. That's just my opinion, though.

    Get Grandia 2 and send the rest to me.

    ~Casey Edwards~
    "Why do people cling to life when they know they can't live forever? To piss death off!!!" -Kefka, from the fanfic "Dead Man's Logic"

    Glossy Nostalgia


    Hey there. You asked about whether or not to buy FF Chronicles? As if there was any doubt! Considering that I firmly believe that Final Fantasy IV was the best final fantasy game to date (I'm probably going to get a lot of flak for this opinion, but I stand by it) and Chrono Trigger was darn close, I am definitely going to get my grubby little hands all over it the instant it comes out. Three main reasons that I want the game, for those of you who like to have numbered reasons for anything:

    1. The opening FF4 airship theme and the theme upon leaving Baron (possibly remastered, possibly in an FMV)

    2. The nostalgia of playing some of the best games that Square ever made, all in one convenient package

    3. Ayla in an anime. Need I say more? ;--)

    Keep up the great work,


    Yet another RPGamer who's gonna get Final Fantasy Chronicles. I especially like points 1 and 3.

    I'm buying it, you're buying it, your mother is buying it, my third and fifth personalities are buying it. My aunt's great nephew's niece's roommate's brother's homie's sister is buying it. What else is new?


    Heya, Aegis and Traks. Aegis, as mentioned before by various other people, you have done a supreme job filling in for Goog; I hope you do this again sometime.

    But, enough brown-nosing, now for the actual questions.

    1) Traks, in your last letters section you said that in Dark Cloud the Chronicle Sword is the best, and it evolves from the Serpent Sword... However, after doing a little FAQ reading, it seems that the Chronicle Sword evolves from the Shamshir. Are you right or are they right? Considering I've only seen it in one FAQ (AdrenalineSL's FAQ on, I'm basically having to weigh his judgment versus yours, and I don't know who's right. Just tell me which sword I should Status Break - my Shamshir or my Serpent Sword.

    Almost all the weapons evolve into either a Chronicle Sword, a Seventh Heaven, or a Sword of Zeus. For status breaking, take the one that has the least requirements for upgrading. Or, save your game beforehand and experiment. Serpent Swords evolve very nicely, though.

    2) Also for Traks, is there any tried-and-true strategy for beating those stupid Earth Digger moles in the Wise Owl Forest? They're doing a rather decent job of killing me very quickly, considering I can't block their attacks.

    Get 100% in the first town (just talk to the people and do what they request). Then, hold in the attack button until you flash twice. Try to time it so that they land right in front of you, then unleash on them. Or, just power up the cat chick a bit and use her to kill them from a distance.

    3) I'm totally looking forward to Final Fantasy Chronicles. I'm much more interested in playing Chrono Trigger on my PS2 than FF4, but either way, I'm a happy man. What is the actual release date, 6/29? That's the day that said they would ship it, right?

    I would say 6/29/01, but don't be surprised if it takes a few days for you to find it in stores.

    The 29th looks like the date, yep indeed.

    4) I know this is not an RPG question, but after watching South Park last night... Have I been living under a rock or something? When did it become legal to say that on television?

    t became legal to use that word on television when it became legal for O. J. Simpson to kill people. Actually, since it is cable, they can just label it "TV-MA" and show it. That's what Cinemax does for all their late-night sex movies.
    At least that's what I'm told, of course.

    I missed the show; I don't know what word you're talking about. I do think that Traks needs to lay off the Skinemax, though.

    Take care!


    Take That, Evil-doer! Hyuk!

    Dear Aegis (and Dear Traks),

    I just had to write in concerning a few things I saw in Q&A. Hmm... yes indeed.

    First of all, the game length thing. Personally, I only buy RPGs. Why? All other games are too short, and therefore not worth the money I spend on them. Of course, my thinking this may have something to do with the fact that when I was 12, I got Donkey Kong Country for my birthday. It had cost my father 800 kr, or about 80 dollars, and I finished it in 3 days. Never played it again. Since then, Iīve only bought RPGs (Yeah, I know, wasnīt my money, but I still felt guilty). I know that you can play other games for as long as you play an RPG, but i like to KNOW that a gameīs going to last long when I buy it.

    SNES games were hideously overpriced. I recall buying Chrono Trigger for $69.99. A few years ago, Funcoland would sell copies of Lufia 2 for seventy bucks. Those are insane prices to pay for any games.

    Nowadays, I'm too busy to finish most of my games anyhow, so it's almost a non-issue for me.

    Also, i totally agree with Master Margie from yesterday. The first Grandia is on of my favourite PSX games, and it holds a special place on my gaming shelf (okay, so itīs just in between all the other games, but you get my point, no?)

    The original Grandia was excellent. It made fighting fun, and any RPG that makes fighting fun is worth holding on to.

    I like cheese.

    And now, for good measure, a question for you:

    What do you think about this Square/Disney thing? I just canīt see Goofy landing the ultimate blow on say, Magica de Hex (thatīs what that evil witch is called here in Sweden), using the Ultima Goofy Dogslash or something.

    As for the Square/Disney thing, don't count your chickens before they're hatched.

    It's kinda strange and creepy, I agree, but I've got a wait-and-see attitude on it. It could turn out rather good. Then again, it could turn out as utter trash.

    And second (whoops, thatīs two), Do you think most GBA RPGs will be translated? I mean, they HAVE to translate BoF! And i want Magical Vacation and Golden Sun, too!

    I think a lot of GBA RPGs will be brought over to North America, yes. It's gonna have a HUGE user base. As for the three you mentioned, all are confirmed to come out here. Be patient, you'll have them soon enough.

    Bonkers, thatīs a long letter. Better stop now.


    Happy Level Up
    Greetin's, A! I agree with the South Park kids about last night's subject. Anyway, I have issues for yas.

    1: I've been playing Diablo 2 for over a year now and my highest level character (Sorceress Dresdel on USEast) is only level 39!! How can players (like the GerBarb team) get to L99 in over a month? (A friend managed to attain L30 in -6 hours- as well!)

    Aegis no play PC games. Traks, help?

    PC games? We don't need no steenking PC games! "Ah-yuk, I just lo-oove altered D&D rules!"
    I'd rather play something a little more exciting that the clickathon that is Diablo II.

    2: What do you think about Square rereleasing games, yet not SD3 (Seiken Densetsu 3/prequel to Secret of Mana)? There's already a ROM translated- why not just ask the translation team for their permission (or just steal it) to copy that onto a CD with remixed editions of FF1-3?

    First off, SD3 was the sequel to Secret of Mana, which was SD2. Next, I'm sure Square wouldn't accept a non-official translation, and stealing something like that would result in a HUGE lawsuit. Thirdly, there's a lot more involved technically than just to "copy that onto a CD." You hear about the bugs in Final Fantasy Anthology for a reason.

    If it was so easy, then it'd have been done already.

    3: Why do you have a column size limit?

    I don't have a column size limit. Where are you getting your info?

    The column is limited in size because only so much printable material is sent in.

    4: Why do you (Aegis and readers) think there are so few multiplayer RPGish games? (We have the Mana series, but that isn't enough!)

    I really don't know. I would definitely like to see more multiplayer RPGs. Split-screen Phantasy Star Online v.2 for the GameCube is one coming out in the distant future. What do the rest of you think?

    Multiplayer RPGs? Just goes to show how much innovation is left for the genre.

    5: Do you know of any way to convince Square and Sony to implement a multiplayer mode into the FFT rerelease? (Preferably with portrait and map editor, along with 'play scenario' option. If the new things were in there, I'd certainly buy it.)

    FFT coming out again is a "rerelease" in the strictest sense. They're releasing the game again. This is not a "remake," like the PSX versions of the Lunar games were. Nothing about the game, except for the new nasty green bar on the cover, is being changed.

    Maybe if you found a magic genie. If you search for one, remember to get a good feeling!

    6: June 21 is m' birthday. Happy level 17.

    I've never heard a person's age referred to as a level. That's kinda cool. Happy B-Day!

    Level is different than age. If it were the same, you'd get stronger every year. Sure, this might be the case at age 17, but at age 87, well...

    -EE "Not Edward Eliot"

    "People can not seem to appreciate replies when they ask questions because they are too busy looking for an easier or quicker way."

    You're Picking at Him for No Reason...

    Hey Aegis!
    Thank you to those of you who sent in answers to my question. I jut read the column and haven't had a chance to check out which one is correct, but thank you!

    One little thing though......... with what Zanretsu mentioned about Krelian. He's not the main villain! Play through the game and you'll see that he was far from the main villain. [big block of text removed]

    By the way, all I said here is unbiased- it has nothing to do with the fact that I think Krelian is the best character ever created. Well, that influenced my writing this, but it has no influences on the statement I made above.

    Xenochick, -the Xenogears Goddess-

    Hi Xenochick. I'm mainly posting this just so you can thank the guys who sent in that mail yesterday. Here you're trying to correct Zanretsu, but he never said "main villain." He just said "villain." And from what I've seen, Krelian is a villain, though, as you pointed out in hundreds of words in the text I cut out, he's not the main one. That's my two cents.

    Krelian? The best character ever created? What about Alf? What about Mr. T?

    He Keeps the Good from Dyin'

    yo aegis!

    the quote is a lyric from big dumb face's song duke lion. keep up the good work!


    You are correct, sir! The people of Sri Lanka will worship your likeness for three full weeks as a result of your vast display of knowledge. "Duke Lion" is a great song, but the music video makes it worlds better. Go find, listen, and watch, folks.

    Super duper.

    End of the Road:

    Well. There you have it. A monster column from an excellent host, Andrew Bilyk. If you're still bored, then go check out Penny Arcade, Seanbaby, or my favorite, MegaTokyo. Of course, you're already reading Sluggy Freelance, so there's no reason to remind you. If you want to be guest host, drop me a line at with a game offer.

    Know that when you read this, I will be sleeping.

    And thus ends a large, large column. I hope you all enjoyed it! This isn't the last you'll see of me, though. As I alluded to at the top of the page, I'm going to be doing a bit of Q&A on a regular basis from here on out. Starting next week, I'm going to be doing Tuesday's column every week. I'll pop in at the end of Cheshire Catalyst's Monday column and let you all know what crazy topics I'd like to hear about, and I hope to get plenty of letters from you all so I can put up a big column each week.

    Until then, though, CC is back from his vacation, so he'll be answering questions-a-plenty this weekend. Be sure to send him stuff!

    Andrew P. Bilyk, signing out.

    P.S. - Send in quote guesses to me on Monday, I'll put up the winner on Tuesday.

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