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Secret Episode
 
Ask JD - Tuesday | August 31 '99 - 5:30 pm EST

Today's Q&A was a grab bag of letters. Surprise surprise as the majority of letters I received focused on the upcoming Dreamcast, FF 8 and Anthology. Read on and be amused. Also of note an Important Announcement regarding RPGamer Activities at the end of the Q&A.

 
Misc

Heya JD, well, I was just at RPGfan and discovered they had real audio of several Chrono Cross songs. Well, me being curios as I am, I listened to them. It was some of the best music, I've heard since Xenogears. I am definitely going to get that game, no doubt about it. Anyway, being as this is a question column, maybe I should ask some questions.
1) What is your take on Gate Keepers? Personally I already think it looks cool.

JD:
I can't say I've heard of the game. I searched the web for it to no avail. No comment at this time.

2) Do you condone those of us that pirate music? I am a poor broke guy, so the only way that I can listen to those beautiful tunes is via mp3.

This is not for me to comment on.

3) If you could recommend one soundtrack cd(non-Ys) what would it be?

Final Fantasy 8 OSV, Grandia Vol 1-2, Lunar Lunatic Festa Vol 1-3 and Magic Parade, Dragon Warrior 2 Symphony, Xenogears OSV..to name a few.

4) Do you think they should let you raise Cuccos in the new Zelda Gaiden? I think that would be cool. That's it, thanks for your time ^.^

-xelement5x

PS-Who do you think is sexier, Aeris or Tifa?(I just had to put that one in for the poll guy)

Yes, Link can raise an army of flying chickens. Ganon Beware.

PS. why not both in their own way?

Oldie

Okay, no real intro here...Oh wait, is this an intro? Anyway...Um, please print this letter! Please...? *drops down to beg*
1)To all people bashing ff4-So what if the game had cheesy dialogue, no maturity, and practically zero sense? It was cute, fun, and when you were a kid, I bet you liked it. (Hey, I thought my first rpg, Mystic Quest, was the best game ever at 7. -_-;;;)
2)To all people bashing ff7-Maybe it's bandwagon, maybe it isn't. I'm on the sidelines watching all this. The polygon figures were a bit..."off", I loved to make fun of Clod-boy. The hated Aeris's gutsand didn't quite enjoy the music. But it was still a great game! Square did goof up on some stuff, but they're only human, right? They're trying to improve, and trying to hit the big bucks with better graphics, better plot and dialogue, a wider target of people to sell their latest game to. Nobody said you had to play their games, there's always OTHER companies. *ahem*
3)Since you, being the God of Q&A you are, seem to know a bunch and have a good opinion of Ys, can you recommend one Ys from the SNES I should try to find and play?
4)What are some good Pen and Paper RPGs and where can I find them? They look interesting...Mwah... Thankyou if you print this letter, um...I'll keep sending in stuff if you don't.

-Engil Deimen

JD:
1/2. I'll keep this to the point. Many RPG Gamers have way too much time on their hands, to argue and/or bash FF games to the point of ludicrousness. Play a game you like, don't play what you don't like and shut up. It's just a form of entertainment for pete's sake. A pissy aura has been hanging over me all day, fun fun fun.
3. YS 4 and 5
4. I was told Warhammer, D&D, DragonLance are a couple of highly recommended ones. I've never played Pen and Paper RPGs or have the time to...so I'm probably the last person to ask on the issue.

 
Golf is a sport, really

Hey JD!! I finally have enough for my Dreamcast!! Just a quick few questions.
1) am I the only one who bought a Sega CD?
2)What is your opinion of the sport of golf?
3)Why do people bash games or systems they haven't even played? Like the Saturn, even though it is essentially a dead system, there are a lot of quality games for it. Man this letter really sucks. I cant think of anything to say. Ehhhh.....I uhhh want to play something other than star ocean 2. Well I've put a lot of thought into it and vie decided to end the letter here. endgame Im sick, gimmie beer ;.';.';'.';.;.';'. JD, im really sorry I wasted your time

JD:
1. No many did, and it was a great system too. Night Trap, Sonic CD, Silpheed, Vay, Lunar 1 and 2, Dark Wizard were some of the coolest games for its time.
2. I try to play every sport out there, golf is no exception. Come on, what could be more fun than walking around a golf course breathing some fresh golf course air. As far as watching golf on TV or playing a golf game well, I guess it's an acquired taste, but I find the former quite dull.
3. There are tons of quality games for all systems. Though I will say N64 was my least favorite due to lack of RPGs. However there still were some great games for it. As for Saturn, sad to say many cool games that did make it out here were at the end of the Saturn run. I had a blast playing all Panzer Dragoon Shooters and Saga, Virtua Fighter, Shining Force to name a few. My point returns to, people like different things and in the end every system has something entertaining for everyone. Extremism really must end, so get a life you hardcore system loyalists.

 
Should or Shouldn't get a Dreamcast

Okay, okay. Strangely, poor, pitiful me tried playing a game besides Ready2Rumble (the only thing playing at Babbages for the DreamCast), I think it was Power Stones or some such thing, against my brother... for about five minutes, tops. Now... I want to get that! Not the DreamCast per se, just Power Stones! And SoulCalibur, seeing as I am one of the greatest fans of the original SoulBlade/Edge (I can never keep the name straight, oddly enough) (I also have all but three of the extra weapons in the Weapon Master Mode!). So, maybe you can help me. Just this afternoon, the new Poll of the Week loaded, and I voted No, that I was never going to get a DreamCast. But... if you can give me the names of at least two or three RPGs (besides Shen Mue... that looks horrid) and a wonderful three dimensional action-type sidescroller, plus the aledged cost of the DC, then maybe... just maybe... a loyal Sony fan will fall back from his pedestal and admit that Sega might actually be making the right move. (If I do get the DC, there is no bloody chance I'm using the modem for quite some time. My bro says there'll be a GoldenEye type game with capabilities for 12 players, and he says that'll be "Hella cool.") Please, don't let my friend know about this. She'd say my brother and I are idiots. Ah, what the hell, tell her anyway. I've never been known to be the smart one to her.

-Irial Rian

JD:
I'm not sure about the 3d action sidescroller one....My main concern at the moment are RPGs, Sonic and Soul Calibur at launch. About the the RPGs...This year in North America there are a number of them, though what sticks out in my mind are Evolution and Black Matrix. Hopefully many of the good/incredible RPGs (Games like Elemental Gimmick Gear, Landers, Grandia 2, Langrisser Millenium, Eternal Arcadia and the most likely Lunar 3) from japan will spill over into the North American and even European market.

 
Best Boss in an RPG

What do you think is the most kick butt boss out of any game?? I think Deathevn is the best (pure evil, how can you beat that??)

-Skibby

JD:
Definitely Dark Force of Phantasy Star. How cool is a boss of pure evil, omnipresent..watching..wating...controlling. Dark Force rules. I'd follow that up with Darm of YS and Galam of Cosmic Fantasy 2.

 
Star Ocean 2 getting flack

(Excerpt)

So what up, G? I have got to know your reason for that succibicent comment you made to the Man with the Hundred Dollars today (er, yesterday, er, will-haven on been yesterday now).

-Dan Quayle

JD:
I got some flack about my comment on Star Ocean 2 yesterday. Today seems the most opportune time for my defense to those who chose to attack me for my comment. The guy in question clearly could get at most 2 games, one of which was FF8.

What remained unclear was, is Star Ocean 2 a better choice compared to the upcoming games like Grandia or Suikoden 2? Not in my opinion.

I made no mention of any outright bashing of Star Ocean 2. I purchased the game with high expectations, as a gamer and as a long time Enix fan. My opinion of the game is that it is good, but no where near the majesty some of you rant about. Even my long standing friends, who are hardcore Enix fans still haven't had much desire to beat the game. The game clearly is one of gameplay over story. A few of you think it's the best thing to come out since bread and butter and that's fine...We have a differing of opinion. If you agree or disagree, write a review. If you don't know what the hell I'm talking about read a review, simple as that.

 
Final Fantasy

FF7 Spoiler Warning

O wise and powerful JD,

I'm sure you've noticed the people who send in unequivocal statements like (and I know you've heard this one): "Final Fantasy VII sucks because it...uh...er...has FMV! Yeah, that's it! Oh, and BTW, the highly censored, translated-by-someone-with-a-2nd-grade-reading-level FF2 rules!"

Now, I'm not saying that FF7 is perfect (of course not). IMHO, it was too easy and the translation sucked. But I don't see what the big problem is with FMV...I mean, you wouldn't be able to do anything during Aeris' death scene anyway, so why not make it look prettier? As for the other complaint, that all that FMV doesn't leave room for story -- well, it's pretty obvious what Square does: when it runs over, add another CD. FF7 was originally slated for 2 CDs and then increased to 3 when they ran out of space for extra FMV. So no, I don't think it squeezes out the actual gameplay like several people have said.

As for the hailing of FF2 US/3 US as the best games ever -- it's hilarious! Not that they aren't great games (they are) but the fact that all the non-FMV things being attacked in FF7 were either better done (IMO) or not much different than in the previous games. For example, the "lack of closure." You CAN have too much of a good thing -- witness FF2 US.
(Cecil: I'm a king!
Rosa: Yeah! And I'm his queen!
Yang: Guess what? I am a king too!
Edge: What a coincidence! So am I! Get the picture?)

And FF3/6 had only marginally more closure than FF7. It was also a graphics hog in its time. And when it came out, people wrote posts ripping it apart and holding up FF2 US as the best game ever. Ring any bells? Anyway, I must now conclude by saying that you're the best Q&A guy ever. (Please, oh please, give me some brownie points for that!)

-Furnben

JD:
Every Final Fantasy has something that which it is better than it's formers or latters. Every game in the series has its pros and cons that make it stand out. As you all know by now, FF7/6 and 1 are my favorites. Your point regarding the FMV issue is certainly one to mull over.

 
FF Anthology Buy it

Howdy.

In Sunday's column, Zac said he would not reccomend getting FFA if you have played both games. Though I see his point, I disagree strongly. First off, many people justify emulation by saying that the games they play are either impossible to find, or never released in the US. All well and good, but now FF V is coming here. To not buy FFA simply because you've played the translated ROM would be hypocritical, and robbery. Secondly, does anyone realise what a huge thing it is that we are getting the Anthology in the first place? A few short years ago, Square wouldn't have even thought of releasing a rerelease of half decade old RPGs in the US, and now they are giving us FF Anthology. Square is finally beginning to respect the US as a market for their games. If none of us buy FFA because we've already played the ROMs, the message Square gets will be pure and simple: Don't give us any more rereleases, we don't want them. Is this what everyone wants? If you've played the FFV ROM and liked it, or if you didn't buy FF VI/III and played the ROM isntead, and enjoyed it, you owe Square the purchase of Final Fantasy Anthology. Now get out there and spend your money!

-Arpad Korossy

JD:
I waited years to play FF V and I'm glad I did. Now I can enjoy FF V for the first time in all its glory. Your comment on sending Square a message if FFA doesn't sell is right on target. It'll be interesting to see how well the game sells once it's released in October. The sticky issue remains is FFA worth getting over the competing RPGs of the time, Suikoden 2 and Grandia of note...Time will tell.

 
The Rock

Finally The Rock HAS COME BACK TO RPGAMER! The Rock is asking JD to publish The Rocks letter and answer the Rocks questions.
#1 The Rock wants to know what you think is a better buy, Final Fantasy 8 or A DC?
#2 The Rock would like to know approximatley how long FF8 will be since The Rock used some of his pocket change he found under his $15,000 couch cushion to reserve his copy.
#3 The Rock would like to know if the FMV sequences are worth buying Final Fantasy Anthology.
#4 The Rock would like to know if the millions. AND MILLIONS of The Rocks fans think that he will once again be The WWF World Wrestling Federation Champ, with The Rock standing in the middle of the ring hearing the Rocks name. Rocky, Rocky, Rocky, Rocky. IF YA SMEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEELLLLL WHAT THE ROCK ;-0 is cooking.

-The Rock

JD:
1. Can't The Rock afford both? I personally couldn't decide one or the other.
2. I've been told 40-50 hours is average.
3. No. Buy the game for the game itself.
4. Magic 8 Ball says "Maybe."

 
Idiot of the Day Award returns

You never print any of my letters. I've sent in out five letters each day (under different names), but you never put any of them up. I find myself sitting on my computer, becomming mad as my sanity slowly slips from my grasp, waiting, sweat pouring from my face..... is JD going to print my letter? No! I never get my letters printed! Now, being wrapped up in a white jacket, I'll I can think about is revenge.... revenge on humankind.... I can only wait patiently until I get my hands on a weapon then- blaaah! Blam!!!! Kaboom!!! Thank you.

-Dale

JD:
Need I say anything?

 
You Suck

JD You suck! You made me cry!

-SuckaBuba

JD:
Here's some tissue paper, wait thats too expensive...here's some toilet paper.

 
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Quickies

In regards to your lil' comment that even FF1 sounds London Philharmonic to FF enthusiasts, I'd like to take a moment and point out that the Dragon Quest Symphonic Suites were performed by the RPO, with good ol' Koichi at the front.
Did I mention that Enix rocks?
-Josh a.k.a. Terry

No wonder the Symphonic Albums sound so good.

Grandia II and Lunar 3. If that isn't enough reason to get a Dreamcast, I don't know what is.
-Myulen

Don't forget Eternal Arcadia and Langrisser Millenium.

What the hell happened to the idiot of the day awards. Im sure as hell that we is aint no smrt er.

RPG Gamers getting smarter? That is a trick question isn't it?

JD. I, too, work at an EB. Nobody will be getting a Dreamcast before 9/9/99. If he takes it home when they come in, he'll be fired. If he sells one before 9/9/99, he'll be fired. Oh yeah, and that sore will have their Sega sales lisence revoked. In other words, he'll be screwed.
-UnLive

Looks like that person yesterday was BSing.

Lord and Savior JD, Ok excuse me am moment while I laugh in that guys face who thinks hes special because hes gettin a DC Tuesday, because I've had mine since last December. *does a Nelson impression* HAHA!
-Super Saiyajin

Isn't Stolar your uncle?

Hi JD, Just wondering what the heck Redbook music is? Thanks.

CD Audio, the kind you find on regular Music CD's.
 

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Picture of the Day - Pokemon Censored Episode
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