Ask JD
Ask JD - August 19 '99 - 4:15 pm EST

I'm short on time again today, sorry. So I'll dispense with the opening.

FF 6j vs FF 3us


I've only played the North American version of Final Fantasy VI, and I've heard there are some significant differences between the two. I was wondering if one of the differences is an explanation of what happened to Banon, leader of the Returners, after Kefka destroys the world. And I've also heard that it's possible to resurrect General Leo in the Japanese version. Is this true? Ohyeah... and if these little details are in the Japanese game, will they be included in FFA? Thanks, Oh Chilly One.


Actually I've never played the japanese version. Any takers?

What Console to get?

Dear JD,

I donāt own a console system, I only have a PC. For the past, oh say, 10 years, Iāve been beating console systems into the dirt because I thought that they were crap compared to anything computerized. Iāve recently begun to realize my mistake. My little cousin got a Playstation for his birthday and when I saw Final Fantasy 7 in all itās technicolor glory, I changed my mind. (I should tell you now that Iām cheap. I donāt own a 3D card and never plan to buy one unless itās in a new computer that I happen to need.) I still figure that PCās are the way to go if youāve got tones of money burning holes in your underwear, but for the cheap, once in a while gamer, like myself, consoles are probably the way to go. So with that all said, which one should I buy? OR should I wait for something bigger and better to come out? Help me. Iāve disillusioned myself for too long and have fallen short of the greatness that console systems have quickly become. Help me. A humble gamer,


You can't go wrong with a Playstation or Dreamcast. So those would be my two suggestions. The Playstation's price just dropped and you can purchase it at a steal of $99 US, and Dreamcast is listed for $199 for the September 9 launch. Both systems will have an incredible amount of games. However the only reason I'm sticking with the PSX is for the RPGs. Dreamcast is the undeniable king of the Arcade/Action/Sports genre.

One of the main reasons I don't play much PC games is all the upgrading crap you have to deal with. To impress me, you really would need show me a PC game that can do the quality of graphics say Soul Calibur or Sonic Adventure can do, and moving at those speeds. I guarantee it would be a hard pressed issue. Go with Playstation if money is tight, and all you want are RPGs. Go with Dreamcast if you want to see what the best is like in the Arcade/Action/Sports games department. Let me reiterate there are a number of great RPGs scheduled for US Dreamcast, Evolution and Black Matrix to name a few. They should start popping up in October/November. Whatever system you choose you'll be sure to find something good. Just don't get a N64. ;) (Yes I know Ogre Battle, Zelda Gaiden, Earthbound64 is on the way, sometime before 2010)

Half Baked RPG Questions

Hiya! Do you know the name of the staff artist for Zelda: OoT? You know, who did the character designs. :> Also, do you know if he or she did artwork for any other game? How about the character designer of Castlevania:SOtN -- do you know if she did artwork for any other game? Her style is so purrable! Thankee. :>

-Breianna MelanTiger

I usually only concentrate on the people working in the music department, or the top dogs in Square or Falcom. So I don't know the answer to these. Anyone know?
Why did I print this? Well, because we really need more questions being asked, rather than just 99% opinions....


Hey JD,

Isn't there an Ys for the computer? I heard about it somewhere (maybe from you). So is there one? That animation and the end of yesterdays column was hilarious.


Yep. YS Eternal, great game. It's for Japanese Windows. Though it is only YS 1 and I still think the Turbo Duo version was better overall. YS 2 Eternal is also on its way. Perhaps now with both Eternal's Working Designs or Atlus might do the publishing.

Square Music

Hey. I'd just like to offer some supporting evidence to a reader's statement that Aeris' theme and the Aria de Mezzo Caraterre (Celes' Opera Theme) sound very similar. This statement could be no closer to the truth. Both songs are in the same key (D major), and start with the same three notes (F#, A, D). The opening sequence of the music playing with the 'Opera' video from the FFVI PSX Omake mode sounds especially like the opening to 'Aeris'. Just tossing in my 2 cents.


Thanks for the info. By the way, these two Matt's aren't the same people or for that matter spawned heathens of Bernie Stolar.

Reply to Kadamose *Random Email*


In reply to kadamose's complete bashing of the Final Fantasy series and the ungodly praising of Ys, i must say that someone is a little too attached to his YS games and he most likely doesn't even own an FF game. First off he should play some of Square's finest work like CT or FF4j/FF2us or even FF6j/FF3us. Now for some cool factoids that even you probably didn't know :-) The title

1.) The title "Final Fantasy" was created by Hiranobu Sakaguchi (one of the top execs of Squaresoft) when Squaresoft was a small company in japan. Not many of their games were "big hits" like World Runner, Death Trap, Death Trap2, and Blasty. It was his last "shot" he titled his first RPG game his "Final Fantasy".
2.) In response to Kadamose's ignorant rant of how the FF series has nothing to do with the earth i have here some proff of his wrongness. The Final Fantasy Series started out with a mythilogoical idea of how the eart came to be with fire and water representing everything on earth. With this main idea Hiranobu took a prexisting idea, the four or five basic elements of the world (a mythical concept that has ben accepted in many religious nowadays) and molded it into a fantasy story. hope you learned something (god forbid, cause we all know you are as close to omniscent as one god can be)...


With all the Kadamose retorts, I grouped all the zillions of letters on the subject and randomly picked one. Fun, eh?
Cool info, I did know #1 but not #2. Interesting stuff.

Return to FMV, no, not CG, Anime

Dear JD,

A while ago, when you really began the great CG/FMV debate, you mentioned something that has yet to be discussed. Anime cutscenes. With everyone yelling about the pros and cons of FMV, anime cutscenes have been almost entirely left out. Why?

Anime has most of the pros of CG, but not as many problems. CG FMV's, if done properly, help to tell the story. So do anime cutscenes. First, CG's, under most circumstances, cannot be compressed as much as anime can. The reason, CG has more colors, so more data will have to used to represent each and every pixel. Anime, granted, does have a lot of colors, but not nearly as many as a professional CG FMV. More space per frame means less frames overall, and also less room for gameplay, graphics, story, sounds, etc. This is minor, but it is an actual, FACTUAL, reason why anime cutscenes are better. Secondly is the time required. While I might not be an actual anime or CG animator, but the following arguement seems logical. Anime takes less time to draw, generally. Anime is less detailed than CG, I'll give you that, but is all that detail really necessary. FMV's should, in theory, help build on the story. Anything exorbitant, unless it is some needed, is just eye candy. Should the game company be wasting time on unnecessary amounts of eye candy, or should they be making a better game? I think a better game is more appropriate.

Anime, in my opinion, can make a person focus on one event more so than CG. I'm not trying to say that CG just, as someone has probably said, "TOTALLY SUCKS!" There are some truely great CG FMV's out there, but then there are a truckload of useless ones out there. The basis of my opinion goes as follows, when one is watching an anime cutscene, there is less detail and imperfections to take in. With less visual input to take in, the viewer isn't just staring at the amazing graphics. They're concentrating on the story. Some people can handle the increased input easily, some can't. They're not stupid, their brains are just wired differently. I'm not saying that detail is bad, but it can be distracting. Distraction during an rpg is bad.

Now, this whole arguement makes one assumption, cutscenes will be used. Of course, without cutscenes there would be less wasted time, less wasted space, and less distractions. But cutscenes can be very beneficial to an rpg, if done properly. In the end, I will make this one point. Anime and CG do the same thing, just differently. Both are usefull if used right. My favorite game, Xenogears, used Anime and CG, which really helped the overall atmosphere of the game. Sometimes the detail was used to just SHOCK the viewer, and in this case it was used perfectly. The anime was also good.

I have written this to hopefully not offend anyone. I decided that I will offend someone. Babylon 5 has better CG than Star Trek. In fact, my favorite CG are from Babylon 5. Painfully yours,

-Lord Anwign
Will you follow me to fire. Will you follow me to darkness. Will you follow me to death?

Ok. I said the FMV-CG topic would be wrapped up. But I didn't mention about Anime! Seriously though, this one was a good letter on the issue. As I said I like both Anime and CG for FMV, but it really depends on the game. For example Lunar and YS can really be best portrayed in Anime. Games like FF in contrast, are best with CG. If I had to choose between CG and Anime, most definitely CG. Have you seen what Square has done with the FF Movie CG's? Incredible stuff.

I'll be honest, Babylon 5 is way better than Star Trek. Tops in my book is the Bab 5 spin off, Crusade. That's just my personal opinion however.

Kriss Kross 'll make ya - JUMP JUMP!

Five quick questions:
1. Who is Bernie Stolar?
2. How do I revive Kefka?
3. Where can I get a Squarestation 3000?
4. (written in invicible ink)
Lots of love and joyful 'eighties music,


This lame subject was brought to you by Pfeizer. Yes, he/she thought of it. I can almost laugh just remembering Kriss Kross' music video. It makes me wonder what happened to them..Anyway..
1. Ex-CEO of Sega of America.
2. Give Him some Viagra.
3. At Sears, in the ladies apparel section.

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I thought Pat Bowlen did. ;p

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Before you go, I wanted to challenge you readers...How about some more questions, rather than all opinion/debates, ok? I promise I'll give you all some prizes. Ok, maybe not. ;)


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