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Welp, most of you dug the new look. A few didn't like it, but most of complaints I received were from Mac users whose Netscape couldn't display the answers very well (the M's looked blockish). I changed the code a bit, and hope this helps. If there are any Mac HTML wizkids out there who can suggest a font which looks good in size 2, bold, and which all/most Mac users have... speak now or forever hold your peace. Oh, and for a switch, instead of wrapping up debate like I did last week, I'm going to focus on answering questions. For a change. :D

What is this... "Shoe Codine" you speak of?

Am I crazy to be excited about Suikoden 2? There is barely any info out on it. All I know is that you MIGHT play evil people, it has a new training-fighting mode, can use the data from Suikoden. What I want to know is how the data from Suikoden is going to be used, any details on fighting (runes, unites, etc.), and if there is going to be FMV's and stuff. Thanky Thor.

-- Taemid

It's no longer "might" dude; it's confirmed. There's also a sort of training system which lets you build up levels and whatnot. Regular battles have been juiced with more magic and combo attacks. The full scale battles have been pushed from a "pwiddy" paper/rock/scissors match to a regular strategy minigame. And, finally, there is FMV--though I can't say if it runs through the course of the game, or only shows up in the opening cinema, like Wild ARMs. Oh, and at this time, it's unknown just how saved data is used. Ain't it a bummer?

Kids, cover your eyes.
(Icky Final Fantasy 7 Spoiler)

Hey. CX again, and I'd like to say that the new design is pretty cool.

Oh yeah... When exactly does Hojo "suggest Aerith and Red XIII er, do the nasty"? I either don't remember that part or didn't want to.

Right before you get Red 13, Hojo wanted to make Aeris and Red XIII mate, since they were the last of their respective species. Of course, Hojo never said "To the dungeon of love with you!" or anything, it was just strongly suggested. You know, so Final Fantasy 7 would only get a Teen rating.

One more thing.... The only thing I didn't like about FF7 was that they changed the victory tune. Some things-- like the Prelude, the Ending (Bridge) theme, and the Chocobo Theme are too good to remove. The old Victory Theme was one of them.

It wasn't so much changed... as remixed. Of course, whether it was a change (or, ahem, remix) for the better or worse will never be agreed on. Getting a room full of people to agree is hard enough; getting all the RPGamers to agree is only slightly less possible than Hulk Hogan winning the next election. Sorry, Terry.

God of what?

Hail Thor, almighty God of Crops!

I've been reading your column since you started it, and recognizing your great wisdom, I hope to obtain some answers to some weirs questions!

1) Is Red XIII a dog or a cat?

Neither, though he looked a lot more feline than canine to me. Some say his body looks like a large dog, but I say it resembles a tiger. Debate is pointless since Red is actually a Big Fake Creature, whose distant cousins include the Little Fake Creatures, Moogles.

2) Do you also like the WCW?

I caught this one a few days ago: Yes, just not as much as WWF. But hey, it's free, right?

3) Are all Hylians elves, or are they just humans with pointy ears?

They're the elusive Middle Fake Creatures! Hylians are Hyruleans (the people of Hyrule) who are more tuned in to magic. Link has always been a Hylian, so has the seven wise man and the royal family of Hyrule.

So, humans with pointy ears, I guess. But except for me, there really aren't that many of those...

4) Did you know that SaGa Frontier has really impressive graphics when played in black and white? I started playing the game without colors and when I finally did, the game lost its entire appeal for me! Who would have thought that Red had blue hair, while Blue had blond hair?

I had no idea. I'm gonna have to go dust off my SaGa Frontier CD and give it a play. (Sadly, I'm not joking. The thing is literally covered in dust. I really need to take better care of my games.)

5) Have you played Baldur's Gate?

No. My computer sucks far too much for such luxury. Besides, I have Master of Magic, who needs other computer games?

6) What was that about lack of treasure chests in Final Fantasy VIII?

They're gone, and replaced with Draw Orbs (that's a Thorism, the orbs haven't been given their proper Christian name yet, or, um, something.)

Well thanks for listening to this, and hopefully, answering my questions.

-- Myst

My pleasure. Well, actually, my job. But you get the idea.

"Your hobbies make you stupid!"

Hey there Thor. I believe I have had at least one letter printed by every single Letters man to date, so here's my first to you. I was just wondering if you could tell all of us totally baffled people out here why you like pro wrestling. I mean, you like RPG's, right? Games that traditionally require thought to play. But then you like wrestling, which traditionally requires the ability to believe that all movies happen in real life (i.e. are not actors following a script, but real people in real life). These two requirements seem to conflict. I think your readers deserve an explanation.

-- Nation

Oh for the love of Cthulhu, where to begin?

As much as Nation here would like to believe, choice in hobbies has nothing to do with intelligence. Sure, the average Mortal Kombat player might seem a bit dense--no offense, guys, I loved MK2 myself--but so would the average RPG player if RPGs were in every arcade in America. In the past, RPGs have been so unfriendly and subdued that all but the dedicated shyed away. This is no longer the case. There were Final Fantasy VII commercials on MTV. Final Fantasy on MTV. 'Nuff said.

Do you enjoy movies? Sure. Didja know they're fake? That's right, fake! When someone dies in a movie, they don't really die. Well, when someone loses in a professional wrestling match, they didn't actually lose. Same diff. All that it takes to enjoy a Wrestling match is a taste for action, adventure, and the ability to just let go. You see, suspension of disbelief has nothing to do with intelligence. To the contrary, a high imagination is usually a sign you won't end up working at a gas station--at least if you can apply yourself. Suspention of disbelief is why some cry when an RPG character dies. It's what makes you care about the people in a book. And it's why millions of teenage girls watched Titanic again and aga... no, wait, that was Leonardo DiCaprio.

Well, that's all I have to say about that. Point taken, I hope. I'm growing tired of printing wrestling letters. <grin>

Fritz Whatdorf? This guy's weird name rivals my own!

I think I've asked you before, but I'm not sure. It was either you, Fritz Fraundorf, or Allan Milligan.

What exactly is Mystery Science Theater 3000? What channel is it on? What time is it on? Where can I find episodes on tape (I don't have cable...damn!)?

Thanks!

-- Matt Elder

Mystery Science Theater 3000 is, well, hard to explain. Imagine watching a really cheesy Science Fiction movie from, say, the 70s, in a movie theater. Now, imagine a lunatic sitting a few rows down from you, a robot on either side of him. Now, imagine them talking non-stop through the entire movie, only you don't mind 'cause they make some really funny jokes and devious referances. Sound fun? (Say "yes".) Well, Mystery Science Theater 3000 simulates this experience! It's on the Sci Fi channel, you can check when it'll be on here.

Better 'n Goldberg

Oh, I can't believe that! You had a perfect record for not missing a single column since signing on, and the Sages drop the ball! I say you take away their canoes for a while.

-- Morbid Walker (Colin Bartolome)

Sages dropped the ball? Are you attacking my co-workers? Listen up, buddy, lets get one thing straight... you're right! They're evil! My record's still clean, though, 'cause I only work weekdays. What goes on once I hang my hat is none of my beeswax. I've not missed a single Ask Thor since I started working here, and I don't intend to start until I take a formal vacation, or somefin'. As for taking away their canoes, believe me, I would... but they're all sticky, and I don't want to touch them.

csRPG for PCs--try saying that five times fast.

While I think it is plain evil to make console-style RPGs on the PC (much like history proved it was a grave erroneous bad idea to port computer RPGs to consoles), I have to say that Knights of Xentar (Dragon Knight 3) isin't the only console-style RPG available.

There is another NC-17 rated RPG called 'Mad Paradox', distributed by Samurai Anime. It's a pretty abysmal game, but some of the hentai scenes are actually pretty good. But quite old.

There's probably hundreds of console-style RPGs on the PC available in Japan. Including ports of Super Famicom, PC Engine, and Playstation games.

Miura Warrior is a shareware console-style RPG under development by one man! It's gameplay is actually very good (although the story, graphics, and music are not up to par, mainly because there is only one person making the game). Check it out at http://www.MiuraSoft.com

Hey. Weird flashback, here: I met that guy on IRC. This was back before I had Win95 (we're talking years ago) and I was sad that he didn't support DOS. Er, mind wandering, on with da Q&A biz.

We also have all those console style RPGs coming out in the near future, like EverQuest, Septerra Core, and etc. In my Humble Opinion, they all look bad. Other than the fact that they are American-developed, I mean, what the hell is with Japan's obssession with 3 character party RPGs? That major RPG flaw has made it's way into the minds of American fanboys who want to design their own console style RPGs on the PC. Me? I'll stick to the true and tried formulae of computer style RPGs. Baldur's Gate, Fallout 2, and lots others are far better than 99% of the console RPGs available anywhere, and Ultima Ascension looks damn awesome.

It's just logical that a Japanese developer with previous "Console Style" RPG experience would make a better game than an American developer who wants to mimic the csRPG style. Kind of like how Anime is better than American 'toons which try and rip the look. We can only hope for some sort of American/Japanese development blend, like Parasite Eve, only for the PC. Well, either that, or Microsoft buying Square. Heh heh.

A mercifly short... "joke".

is sepaku like Hari Cari? hehehe.

Isn't he dead? Ha, ha!

OK, I'm sorry. I promise I'll never do that again.

Allright boys and girls... group nod! ^_^

Greetings, dude. Your hammer was recently sighted in a kick-$#@! game series by the name of Marathon- only one of which is available for Windows; you poor unfortunate souls, you don't know what you're missing!

Anyway, here's my question, after which I will, I'm sure, have to provide a year's Service sweeping and cleaning the cluttered RPGamer vault: Why is it that, in the Final Fantasy series, the characters Nod at each other all the time? The Group Nod must have some special signifigance, because they do it all the time! The characters turn to each other, stare at each other, then Nod, in unison. FFIV: there it was. FFV: they did it so often I thought their heads were going to fall off. FFVI: Didn't think they'd let such an opportunity slip by, did you? Nod, Nod, Nod. I was beginning to think that Square was going to cut it out in FFVII, but then I got up to the last boss- yep, there's the Nod.

Say, does anyone happen to know if this ridiculous Nod shows up in other RPG series?

-- M.C.

Son, you have just uncovered one of the darkest secrets of the Final Fantasy series. It's been kept tightly under wraps since the Nintendo days--Sony felt it would hurt sales, so even they kept Square from telling the truth. You see, every single character in the Final Fantasy series has suffered from Tourette's Syndrome. Square has done their best to hide the affliction from Americans by never translating the 200 odd cusswords which appear at random throughout the Japanese versions of the games.

Sadly, Tourette's Syndrome isn't just inopertune swearing and barking like a dog. People who suffer from Tourette's often jerk or twitch uncontrolably. In Final Fantasy, your so called Nod is actually just a huge coincidence: All party members twitch simultaneously.

Remember, Tourette's Syndrome isn't just fanciful cussing and fun, it's a serious affliction, and should never be joked about. Ever. Especially if you intend on generating a cheap laugh in a two-bit Q&A column.

A question. The good news is it ain't about Final Fantasy.
(The bad news? It's about Chrono Trigger, and a spoiler.)

You know what's been bugging the heck out of me for about 4 years? What the heck happens to Schala after she sends you back in time in the Ocean Palace? My friend and I have analyzed the game painstakingly for the last 4 years, trying to figure this one out, searching all over, and we can't find her ANYWHERE! It's like Square decided to just have her drop off the face of the earth so they wouldn't have to worry about her realtionship with Magus anymore. You THINK they'd do something with it, like have a sidequest or something, instead of just having Marle say to Magus at the end (if you don't kill him...why would you WANT to kill him? He's so awesome!) "So, you're gonna go look for your sister, eh?" For a while we thought there was a way to "Save Schala" cause the old man at the End of Time (Balthasar? Galagher? Mooshupork? Whatever.) said that stupid "Someone close to your is in trouble. Help this person...fast." But THAT idea ended when about a year ago I replayed CT and killed Queen Zeal, and decided to return to the end of time to get myself healed after destroying Magus' outer shell, and it turned out he was talking about Zeal instead of Schala! So we finally decided she probably died in the Ocean Pallace. But THAT wouldn't make any sense, becasue it's not like the thing exploded or filled with water, cause it turns into the Black Omen! So what the heck is up? What's YOUR take on this?

-- Zelgadis

As far as I know, Square ran out of time and couldn't expland on the Schala storyline like they had originally planned. Isn't that just depressing? And nowadays, when we not only get Square RPGs (SD3... snif...), but get virtually unedited, uncensored, complete games... and complain about 'abysmal dubbing' in Xenogears! We should be ashamed of ourselves. Twenty floggings for the lot of ya! Oh, and thirty for me while you're at it. Heh heh.

Unfit for Print

Hello this is the first time writing to the RPGuru so I don't know if I am supppose to E-Mail you. But I just wanted to tell you that the N64 Sucks!! Just yesterday my brother,He was playing Zelda 64 and after he fought Ganon the second time when you run down the tower while attacking Ganon the impossible happened, the stupid thing froze up, and he didn;t even get a hit on Ganon yet. So I personally think that the N64 REALLY REALLY REALLY SUCKS!!!! and thats just to let you know.

No comment.

Lip-smackin' Quickies:

Champ made a request: "could you quit using the word the? it offends me." Haha, good one. Believe it or not, this is the first letter Champ has written me which, upon printing, wouldn't offend 99% of RPGamer's readers. // Unright corrected: "There was one other Megami Tensei game released in America besides Persona. It was called Jack Bros. and was released on the Virtual Boy." Yeah, I know. If I hadn't received two such corrections, I wouldn't have believed him either. // The Underdone Man says: "Upright Citizens Brigade Is Buff!" Why, yes. Yes it is. // The RPGamer News Dude asked me to say the Final Fantasy Collection is 3 CD-ROMS, one for each game, and they contain all the FMV sequences, contrary to what he has mistakenly told people in the past. I guess I'm a corrections guy now. Maybe I should try an' typo less... Naw. // And finally, enigmaopoeia said: "In your Satisfying Quickies, you said that PHS stood for Personal Hailing System. Well, that is incorrect. PHS is Japanese for Party Henshin System in which the word 'Henshin' means 'Transform' in English. PHS is also a cellphone in Japan that is why when you use the PHS in Final Fantasy VII, it rings . . . ^^" Hey, now. I didn't say that. Some other guy did. Hrmph!

Thor Stuff:

One awful side effect of the redesign on my replies is... well... see for yourself:

"Sure I'll answer your question, dude! :D"

Needless to say, I'll probably be <grin>'ing a lot more than :D'ing... with a face that small, no one would believe I'm six foot four. Grumble.

I almost forgot, the cute surprise thingy I've been talking about. Well, here you go. Katerina "Trina" Antrim, my evil widdle kitty. Isn't she cute? She's half Elder One, it really shows in the eyes.

Anyways, I guess I'll see ya'll on Monday. I'll have played mega Videogames, and will more likely than not have a few insane theories/musings/complaints to share on monday. Keep writing, and I'll keep answering. As long as I get my footrubs. :D

- Thor "I miss my cute lil' smiley face" Antrim.
Now, watch: It'll turn out to have been Thursday after all.

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