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Ask Thor
Seeya later, crocodile.
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 Zelda 64
(Screw the key, just break the !@#$ door down!)
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 See how many typoes you can count! The archives await.

Well, it's Friday. And I say that with almost full confidence.

As I'm writing this in my brand new slippers, the mood will be relaxed; the color red; and the pace sluggish. Also, since Thursday Thorsday Madness was kind of... not, it seems a good 80% of you decided to make some sort of comment about me in their letters. Thanks, I'm flattered, really. Now will the guys please stop hitting on me? It was funny. At first. Now it's starting to creep me out. I have the strangest urge to exclaim "Men!", rent Ghost and take a long bath.

<shudder>

Final Fantasy Tactics 2? We wish.

Finally (hee hee), I'm about to finish Final Fantasy Tactics. Being a working college student, I find that I don't have the time to put into games that I used to have, and even though I bought it the day it came out, I am just now closing on the ending. And I have loved every step of the game! I was wondering if you, son of Odin, knew anything about a possible sequel or if you can think of anything that would make a sequel even more interesting.

-- Eric Denney

I'll forgive you for that pun because you're a college student and could probably kick my arse. Then again, you like FFT, which just screams "brainiac", so I won't be too cautious.

Anyway, there is no word yet on a sequel. As for what'd make it more interesting...

  • Gimmick battles: Your battle takes place in an abandoned steam-machine yard. (Assuming FFT2 will be set a few 100 years after FFT.) You can fight the baddies, or if you're crafty enough, send a fast moving character to a large train and send it rolling down the track, forming a wall between armies and thus ending the fight. The only thing I saw of this nature in FFT was the last battle with Gafgarion, where, depending on if you knew about the switch or not, the battle could really be changed.
  • Noses.
  • More balanced classes. Should a Knight really be the end-all in "Buff" value? Why are Chemists usually as useful as Priests, even though they're pretty much a newbie level class, and why the heck aren't Mime's more useful? I'd like to see better classes towards the end. I mean, a Knight versus a couple of black mages is in serious trouble. A Knight versus a couple of bards is just seneseless violence.
  • An ending that makes sense. None of this "You decide", crap. It was cute when Final Fantasy 7 came out. It was alarming in Final Fantasy Tactics.
  • And finally, more non-human classes. Lets see some Moogle Monks, Knoll Knights and Succubus Summoners. Mhhm.... Succubus Summoners...
Aside from that, just your standard gameplay tweaks and graphic updates. How 'bout it, Square?

Boring Thor-related question

hey Thorpedo,

I am quite familiar with the phenomenon which you are currently experiencing with your facial hair. I have had brown hair on my head for almost 19 years now, and when i decided to grow my beard last year, it turned out that almost half of it is red. You should certainly not be freaked out by something like this. As a matter of fact, it's sort of a blessing in disguise. Do you have any idea how many woman find my multicolored beard to be INCREDIBLY attractive? And I don't mean just your average looking girls, I'm talkin about the one's that'll REALLY make your Materia grow! So I suggest you stick with it.

Thanks a lot. I am never going to "equip" Materia again. Ever.

By the way, do you realize the potential that your name has for you? You could create almost any type of product you want. For example, how about marketing an embalming fluid called Thormaldehyde. Or you could maybe sell some really warm clothing and call it Thormal Underwear. And, with your close familiarity with thunder, you'd make a great weather Thorcaster. Better yet, you'd make an awesome diplomat (a Thoreign Minister). And I know you hate the term "RPGuru", so how about RPG MENThOR? I guess I've gone a little overboard, so I'll stop beating this dead thorse and let you go (as if you haven't already.)

P.S. How about trying your hand at writing speaches? "Thor score and seven years ago, our Thorfathers brought Thorth on this contenent..."

-- vEGO the Carpathian

Thith is the moth thilly letter I've ever retheived.

Seperated at birth? Hardly.

Hey Thor,

For your viewing pleasure, here is a Heike Kagero pic to compare with whatever you might have of Sephiroth. Myself, I don't see much resemblance, but maybe if they both were drawn in the same format (turn Kagero into polygons or Sephiroth into cartoonish sprites) they could be compared better. Anyways, enjoy.

-- TTUxcntry

Well, um, here ya go. Sephiroth and Heike. Side by side. Whee. Hey, anyone have any questions? Ya know, a lil' paragraph with a "?" at the end? Anyone...? :D

Red 1548
(Final Fantasy 7 Spoiler. )

Well, as a POSSIBLE explanation.....maybe Bugenhagen was referring to his MATURITY level....not like the whole Dog/Human years... I mean...he certainly seemed less than totally mature to me (always sucking out when it came to his family etc.)

-- Gordon Little

Quite a few RPGamers wrote in with this theory, but I have to say I disagree. If I remember correctly, one character even commented on how mature Red XIII was. He always reminded me of a teenager who was forced into adulthood too soon; he'd be childish now and then, but never, say, wandered off when he was supposed to save the world. That, and he kept his room clean.

Random thought: Kicking the ball at Red XIII. Fun.

***

About that Red XIII age thing...actually, Draygon is wrong. The time when you go to Bugenhagen is when Red XIII is 16 (in human years), but 48 in the years of whatever he is. So it's 48:16 or otherwise noted as 3 to 1. So, you multiply human years by 3 and you get his years. But it still doesn't matter because, well, it's 500 years later, right? So 500 + 16 = 516. He is really 516 years old (in human years). And in the years of whatever he is, he is 1548 years old (whoa!). Unless you're talking about 500 years in his time [Highly doubtful. -- Thor], so he would be 548 (total) in his time. So 548 divided by 3 is about 183. But I believe the first thing is correct, but he is really, really, old then! Well, that's all.

Regards,

-- Dan

It took the combined mental strength of two RPGurus--one former, one who hates the title--to come up with this answer, but here goes: Assuming a normal human lives to 75, Red should have been 6.44 years old in human years, not 15. (This is going by the 47:15 figure, and assuming he suffers a massive a heart attack the exact moment the epilogue ends.) Finally, a plot mistake in Final Fantasy 7 which fans can't argue was mearly misinterpreted, heh heh. Thanks to Brian Glick for helping my mathmaticly disabled sexy lil' self. Godspeed, Big Lick, and Kupoo.

You know, this has got to be the most amusing debate I've ever had the pleasure of handling during my run as Q&A Dude. It just tickles my fancy to think that because of a simple bit of fluff, a "Dog" joke aimed at a cross between feline and canine, Square wound up with a century and a half old mortal.

Delicious.

Crono is Cool.

This is for the person who needed a replacemant FF7 instruction booklet. To obtain one, you can order it from Sony by calling them at 1-800-345-7669.

-- Crono

See? I told ya so.

Final Fantasy Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Dear He-Who-Uses-A-Hammer-For-Non-Carpentry-Purposes:

And just what are you implying?

I have a question about warning signs for obsession of video games. Is it a bad sign when I start worrying about being encountered while walking down hallways, thinking in the back of my mind, do I have enough MP? I know this sounds odd, but I am not making this up. I noticed my subconscious worrying me about what I will do if I encounter a T. Rex. Anyhow, Is this a sign of my coming insanity, or a Buddha-like ascension to RPG Holiness, or at least a subdued bliss state (You know, the ones where you sit and drool staring at a wall.) ?

At first I was about to dismiss this as a... "funny" letter, but then I got to the part about him being serious, and figured what the heck. (It wasn't "Heck" per se, but you get the idea.) Anyway, that's probably normal. As long as you're playing a lot of RPGs, that is. If you feel like this a week after playing your last game, seek help. Now.

Figuring you're the best psychoanalyst on the web,

-- Matt.

Well, that right there is proof you're insane.

I smell the sweet, musky scent of debate

Why do people claim plot is the MOST important factor of a RPG? I always thought that was the reason we have books and movies (and TV mini-series). I would like to hear your thoughts about what the most important factors (plural, preferably five) are in a RPG, including an explanation with concrete factual information. If (assuming you answer) you exclude any game play factors, I will have lost all, despite already minuscule, respect for your integrity.

Mmmkay. Here ya go. What I think is most important in an RPG, in, uh, "most important" order.

  1. Gameplay: And by gameplay, I mean battle sequences. Don't waste your time on fun minigames we play for three minutes, concentrate on making the battles fun, and then add the fluff. And while we're at it, lets let people avoid battles by dodging on-screen enemies. And, just because it's Christmas, give us a selectable difficulty/random encounter level. Is it really too much to ask?
  2. Story: No Boy Vs. the Empire. No Big Evil Monster. No pacifist heroes. We want something new. We want it now. Pick up a hardcore Fantasy novel, read some Bruce Sterling, heck, base it on Stephen King's The Stand. Just come up with something new, or we'll hurt you.
  3. Replay Value: If you shove every last detail of every single character in our faces, we'll puke. Leave a little mystery, and hide it well. Just make sure you don't leave huge plot holes doing so--I hated finding out I had to make a trip back into the mansion just to find out what the first half of the freaking game (Final Fantasy 7) was about. (No need to mention hiding powerful items, RPGs do that anyway. Good RPGs. Here's a cookie.)
  4. Translation clairty: It's not petty to complain about a translation when you needed to buy the official strategy guide just to finish a bloody RPG. A player should be able to finish a game without outside help if given enough time. (A hard to find clue, etc.) People don't like being given instructions like, "Go to the mountain past the river to the east under the sea. There you will find the temple to which you are looking for. Peanuts!"
  5. Sex: Well, I just kinda threw that one in. Maybe Working Designs could handle it...

    Side note: Is it me, or are the editorials in the editorial section awful? Gad, so many of them can't back their argument with concrete evidence!

    -- The Red Scare

    I'll admit, I've never been that fond of our editorials, either. I mean, just look at some of the titles:

    "With My Last Breath, I Spit At Thee"
    "You just don't get it, do you?"
    And my personal favorite: "Aeris the Ideal, Tifa the Human"
    People... please... they're just editorials. Take a deep breath, and step away from the gun.

    What did he call me?

    hey hot stuff

    First, on lagunas drastic change, there was no change whatsoever, first of all, his personality is still described to be the same, second can you actually describe the change in his face? and do you remember how he was dressed before? no, because they never showed anything but his head. we could see a collar of some sort on him, but we saw the same collar on zell, seifer, rinoa, and that new guy irvine. And while im at it ahem sexypants (3).

    -- Edge (of course thats not my real name) Morpheus

    The weird thing is... he's right. Just about everyone I know was making a big deal about the change--I was even saving an editorial/letter on the subject for Monday--and Morpheus had to go and spoil my fun. Shame on you, Morpheus. Why do you have to be so darn right?

    Unfit for Print

    Joining us for this edition of Unfit for Print is Mike, Tom-Servo, and Crow, the cast of Mystery Science Theater 3000. They'll be peppering this letter with fun jibes, offbeat humor and wacky referances. If Best Brains asks, you never saw this. Capisce?

    Zelda sucks eggs, majorly. Why? I'll tell you, and maybe you'll see the light.

    1. It was made by Nintendo. Need I say more?

    Mike: Yeah, starting with "Because..."

    2. The graphics are way overhyped. Look at Parasite Eve, FF7, Metal Gear Solid, all these games have much better graphics!

    Tom-Servo: Sadly, the third dimention was lost on little Billy. He lived his life being blown from town to town, his paper-thin body acting as a kite.

    3. Boring. Wow, another dungeon, exactly like the last one. I'm excited.

    Crow: Actually, that's the same dungeon! You just keep walking in then exiting.

    4. Too easy and too short. My little brother could beat this game in less than 20 hours. Sad.

    Crow: Yeah, well, my daddy could beat your daddy.

    5. Music. *yawn* I don't think I've ever heard any music more boring than this crap.

    Mike: Obviously not a big fan of John Tesh.

    6. Overused and unoriginal plot. Ganon kidnaps the princess. Go save the princess. I've never seen that before.

    Tom-Servo: For Gods sake! Has he no clue? Link and Gan(n)on are destined to battle for an eternity! To endlessly reincarnate and make fray! The repeated plot is intentional genius, not lack of creativity, it's--!

    Mike: Heh, ok, stop. <pats Tom's bubble-head>

    There are many other reasons than this, but I hope now you've all seen where you should put your Zelda cartridges! That's right! In the trash!

    -- PEMASTER

    Crow: You know, Frued would have something to say about that name...

    <Roll Tunnel Sequence>

    Well, *ahem*, there you have it, a multiple-persona answer, in all its pathetic glory. Don't worry, if I ever do this again, it won't be for a while. At least the Josh Reid fans'll like it, heh heh.

    Oh! The point of all this was don't send in a list of stupid opinion and expect it to be printed. What's stupid, you ask? Question one, is a perfect example: Zelda 64 didn't sell 6 million copies because it was a bad game.

    Whats the matter, not have enough time for some Quickies?

    Harbinger suggests using Webferret , a search engine program. Why? 'Cause it helped him find RPGamer. Aww. // Chris Kohler sez: "Nintendo still sells, via their web page, instruction books for most SNES, N64, GB, and even NES games. They've even got manuals for third-party releases, most notably all four Dragon Warrior games." Sweet. Now I can finally get a Shadowgate booklet... // Mike said: "When a guy makes a pass at you, better you should be *sober* for at least a little while. I don't imagine it's much fun to wake up in Tijuana with "Joey" tattooed on your bicep." Uh. Uhh. This is why I'm a coffee guy. // An unnamed RPGamer wrote: "Why don't y'all put some Dallas Cowboy coverage on your site?" We'll look into it, right after we add C:SotN, MGS and Tekken 3. // And finally, Zach Stroum sighed: "I left that picture of Vestal as a Mog up on my screen for a second to go answer the phone and my brother walked by! Well thanks alot, he won't come out of his room and he's asking if Lavos can set something up to end his depression." Poor kid, it happens to the best of them. Have him take two of these and call me in the morning.

    Thor Stuff

    Welp, this'll be the last Ask Thor for the week. Just for the record, while the Ask Thor Drinking Game wasn't made for the Circle of Sages, it's almost 100% compatible. Except for, uh, everything that refers to me. Moving on.

    Zelda 64 is ticking me off. My time to play games is limited, and it seems I've been spending my time wandering purposely--as opposed to wandering aimlessly, which is actually kinda fun. (Whee! Horsie-ride!) You see, like most Zelda 64 players, I'm stuck. Stuck like a slab of cake to a Jenny Craig member's face. I really, really wish there was more combat in Zelda 64. Puzzles are great--they've been there since the first Zelda--but you know what else was in the first Zelda? Eight enemies per room, that's what.

    I'm starting to give Castlevania 64 a glance or two. I've heard it's got tons of combat and few puzzles. Yum.

    Anyways, wish me luck with my Questing during this weekend. (Just yell it at the screen, I'll hear you.) I'm going to try and finish off a few dungeons, with the aid of walkthroughs, so I can hurry up and get a Xenogears'n. I suppose I'm robbing myself of a hardcore gaming experience, or somesuch, but come on. I've had it for like, a month. It's time to kick some Ganon arse. <grin>

    And now, a weekend of videogames, books, and neckrubs from adoring fans. Hopefully female.

    - Thor "The Emperor of Ice-Cream" Antrim
    I wonder if anyone actually liked that MST3K segment... naw.

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