More of the same
Doh, I did it again. I played so much Star Ocean I forgot I had a column to right. That game is like crack, it's so addictive. Well, at least I have a greater variety of topics to choose from today. Thanks, you guys really are cool (like I ever doubted ya? ;)
The Moon or the Stars?
Is Star Ocean as good as Lunar:SSSC? Cuz I just got Lunar (actually, I got it 2 days after it came out) and I am starting to feel like a fool for not buying Star Ocean instead. I love the game, and judging by your review, you like it as much as me, but now Star Ocean is starting to look better.. Should I have waited for Star Ocean? Oh, and am I sending too many letters to you?
Ryan: They're both good in their own way. I love the battles in Star Ocean, they're action based instead of menu based. Did you know that Star Ocean has over 1200 voice samples? Pretty nifty.. It may just be the dark horse hit of the year. It's kinda weird because there's so much to do, so many looooong side quests you can do.
Guide me
Howdy Partner. Quick question for ya. Do you know if anyone is making a strategy guide for Star Ocean: TSS? I was at EB today buying my Official Lunar guide when I thought I'd look for a Star Ocean guide, but no luck. I'm the type of person who must have a guide handy in case I get stuck. So with that, i'm still on the fence about Star Ocean. Help push me over.

Another note.. As I said above, I got the Lunar Strategy guide by Working Designs and on the back is a picture of Alex and Luna kissing. Did WD haxor that scene out of the American version, or am I missing something? If they did edit it out, DAMNIT WHY!?! It's not like its porn, and this is a love story, right?! I hate that! <makes the maddest face you ever seen!> Oh well, I want answers. Help, please! -Zap

Ryan: I don't think there's a Star Ocean guide yet, but Prima or Brady will probably have one soon enough with all the fan support this game is getting. As for the Lunar scene, it could just be some artwork that wasn't ever in the game, who knows.
...or not
Hey Ryan,

What's up?? I have had a question that has been bugging me lately and I would like your opinion on it. What is your take on strategy guides?? I mean, I don't know, but I find myself buying one for every RPG I purchase!! know...sometimes I can't help looking ahead a few pages and getting the whole story ruined for me, even though I tell myself "OK, I am only going to look at this when I get stuck." So, from now on, I don't think I will buy any strategy guides=). But, how do you think the Strategy Guide market is doing?? I mean, nowadays you see one for every game that comes out, but why would someone want to spend $15 when they could just look at a FAQ or walkthrough on the Internet??


Ryan: Personally, I don't use guides, I like to refer to FAQs because they're free. Guides usually are a lot better, because they usually have maps and stuff, but the ultimate compromise would be an online guide (hint hint) that has maps and descriptions of enemies, items, etc. They really don't take that long (maybe a few weeks if you work hard on it.) Plus you get a lot of worship from greatful fans when you do one. :)
(Lunar Spoilers)

Hey, Ryan:

A friend of mine just loaned me his copy of Lunar: SSSC, and I find it to be a very enjoyable and well written game. Last evening I was enjoying the playing, and I had just beaten the part where you nix the evil Dragonmaster on Lann Island. Then, something hit me. "I wonder what that Ocarina that Alex carries does?" So I whipped it out, and much to my surprise, it was a music test! WOW! I can hear all the songs via this one item! So I was unwittingly scrolling down through the song titles, and I come upon one called, "Magic Emperor Ghaleon." Wha? The icky, gummy feeling of having an RPG spoiled for you rushed through my mind in a heartbeat. Part of the game was spoiled, not by the instruction book, or some loudmouth on usenet, but by itself. WHY? Although I really don't care, as I'm sure that probably wasn't much of a plot twist compared to later ones anyways (everyone knew Ghaleon was evil, it was only a matter of time). Just thought I'd point that out. Otherwise, fantastic game! Apologies for the spoilers!

Ryan: Yeah, the Ocarina is a music test, just like that really expensive mirror Ramus sells is a movie viewer. He'll give you one for free near the end of the game, so you can view all the movies (you may have to change discs for some movies, though.)
We're not PC
To Ryan, Lord of the pale, sickly-looking ducks that live by the old pond by a old Barn in West Haven, Vermont;

Why does RPGamer not cover the role-playing games of the computer world? I mean, some of these games are absolutely great RPGs. Baldur's Gate, Fallout, and the Quest for Glory series are, in my all-knowing opinion, just as good as FF7, and much better than the "I just want to the game to stop, for the love of God!" BoF3. Don't you feel like a fine RPG site like yours should cover the whole genre. Or do are you too good for them? Yeah, I can see you now..sitting in your little room laughing maniacally, thinking about how great you are in comparison to those inferior computer games. Damn you, Amos! I shall have my revenge!

Moogle Child
The man who knew too much

Ryan: Yeah, we think they all suck so we don't cover them. Actually, we're (slowly) adding PC games, but console games are still taking precedence over them. I think someone is working on the Ultima series (all 15 games or whatever,) but I'm not sure, I'll have to ask.
Wild west.. yeah, uh huh
An RPG setting I'd really like to see is a wild west setting. I mean, Wild ARMs sorta touched on it a little, but it was still pretty much a medival style RPG. I mean, go full western-gothic style, like the upcoming movie Wild Wild West. Id really enjoy such a setting.

Another question: Do you ever think other companies might catch on to using great packaging and extras, like Working Designs does? That would be neat.

Ryan: Somehow, I think that would be a bit TOO weird for my tastes. And the day there is a Will Smith type character in an RPG is the day I declare that Beyond the Beyond is good. And I hope other companies do use that idea, it's a good one, but they probably won't. Why sell a game with a lot of cool stuff for $10 more when you can just charge $10 more anyway and spend more on advertising? Blah.
Master of the universe!
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Star Ocean: The Second Story
Ramus has blue hair cuz he's that kid in that Crash Test Dummies video


That's interesting. Now that you mention it, I kinda wish he WAS a crash test dummy...
Why did you print my letter? One of two reasons: It sucked and I wanted to make fun of it, or it was interesting and informative. Probably the first.

Ryan sez:

Still addicted. Yup yup yup. The Star Ocean 2 has like, no sense of humor, but that's ok, it's still chock full of non-linear goodness. Best $35 I ever spent. :)

Ryan "Couldn't think of a nickname" Amos

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