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Welp, after two days of heavy RPG questions it seems ya'll got tired of asking. The ironic thing is, Thursday Thorsday Madness' letters were your standard RPG questions, and today (a day without a special little name), I received mostly "wacky", off-topic stuff.

Oh, and the Xone is gone. I'm back to normal, except for this stupid yellow puff which won't stop following me around. Can't complain, though: Girls seem to think its cute.

We have ways of making you talk.

What are the chances of us seeing a sequel to Final Fantasy Tactics? Has Square ever said anything?

Sorry dude, Square has said less than an inarticulate mime with his jaw wired shut.

Like, totally, cha, whatever.

In Final Fantasy Tactics, which job skill is better - Two Swords or Two Hands? I'd rather not invest the time in getting both, being lazy.

Well I'll be. Is this a new form of the classic Genji Glove/Gauntlet debate? To para-quote Secret of Mana: Time is a river, and history repeats. Er, anyway, I'd say Two Swords. For one, you can use two different weapons, which lessens your chances of, say, being stuck against, say, a fire enemy with a fire sword. For another, watching one strike after the other is really fun. :D

And what exactly is a "stud-muffin"? All I can ever think of is a muffin with chunks of iron in it. How did that ever end up meaning "attractive"? I've been exposed to too many chemicals to figure it out on my own. That's science for you.

--Toni, hoping to genetically engineer chocobos someday

While no one can say for certain how some phrases are started ("Wow! That Unibomber is a real bomber!" 'No, he's the bomber.' "Yeah... truly the bomb'"), I like to always blame valley girls. They're annoying, they say enough weird slang to make it probable, and they're usually unarmed.

FF8 rocks.

Dear Thor:

I was reading your column as usual when you mentioned that you had heard that FF8's battle system was interesting. Well, it actually is, I'm not talking about all the draw spells and stuff. But the battles are actually HARD! It's been a long time since I played a hard Rpg (I really can't remember actually). Here's the weird part, I DIED, how long has it been since anyone ever died in an Rpg? I was amazed. The boss battles are really tough for the beginning of a game, the boss battle can take as long as 20 minutes to beat. And just selecting the attack command won't work because if that's your plan, you are more screwed (can I say that? screwed?) than whatever happens to those sacks of dead monkey's. So I think a lot of people will enjoy FF8 because you actually have to think when you are in one of the battle sequences.

-- Temjirim

Assuming you somehow managed to play a game which won't be released for another six days (people are resourceful), I'm honestly surprised. Of course, there are a ton of variables here: Did you gain a lot of EXP, did you run from every fight, did you forget to upgrade your equipment a lot, and, of course, are you just making this up for fun. If you're serious, thanks for the info, and I'm looking forward to such a nifty game. If you're joking, I'm going to send Mike down there with a blow torch and a pair of plyers.

Don't ask, you don't want to know.

Question and Comment in one easy package!

Hey Thor,

Have you ever let a game idle for a while before you start playing it? One day I loaded up FF Tactics and then my phone rang. I just hit mute on the TV and answered the phone. As I was talking I noticed some things I haven't before. After a while the game went into a kind of background story description. Then after a while it went into what I can only describe as a sort of movie trailer for the game. Finally it went through all the character classes and described them all. I have since tried this with some other games and found some more stuff. Wild ARMS has a background story after the main title. Do you know of any other games that do this?

Tons of games have little cinemas if you leave the game on long enough. Most just replay the introduction you see when you select New Game, but there are a few pleasent exceptions: Alundra has an Anime introduction, and if you leave the game on for a while, you can see the original Japanese intro. It's just gameplay shots, but nifty nevertheless. In Lufia II, there's a second introduction, which shows the characters personalities off. And finally, in Beyond the Beyond, if you hold down the triangle button before the title screen appears, you see a hidden CG intro.

Can you believe it? Yet another reason to play my all time favorite RPG!

I've also noticed that I like RPG's that have more of a backstory to them. FF Tactics is good in this because of the 50 year war. I'm getting tired of the backstory for games being that 1000 years ago there was a disaster but everything worked out fine and nothing has been going on since but now something is starting to happen which seems to be related to what went on 1000 years ago.(Anything that can be described in one run-on sentence is not an adequate enough backstory) I guess I am just too used to well-structured novels with a world that seem to have a real history to them. (Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time) By the way, Jordan's Wheel of Time books also deal with sex between the main characters in an adequate way. I do like the current trend with sex being more noticeable in games and not being caught under the Adult Conspiracy.(Piers Anthony's Xanth series)

-- Ryan, this letter was a lot longer than I thought it would be.

RPGs with a lot of history are fun. Come to think of it, Final Fantasy 7's backstory is one of my favorite parts of the game. Every time I play Final Fantasy 7, I catch more scraps of info. The really great thing about backstory is it's the perfect source of "bonus hidden info". I detest the fact that storyline necessary to follow to the actual plot of Final Fantasy 7 was well-hidden in that mansion sequence. I think they should have made that particular epiphany clear, and hidden some nice Cetra/Jenova scene instea... hey, now I'm talking about Final Fantasy 7. I can't wait until FF8 is released, just so we have something new to babble about.

Kawaii Thor, or "Ugh!"? You decide.

Thor God o' Thunder

Well now you've gone and done it, all those RPGirls that you have e-mailing you are probably frothing at the mouth now. You just had to go and post that picture didn't you, didn't you! Didn't feel you where getting enough neck rubs, foot rubs etc. I'm telling you, if your lady friend reads this board, boy are you going into be in trouble. I can see it know "Tonight on Ricky Lake; Internet question and answer guys named after norse gods who secretly recieve cyber foot rubs from an army of female online admireres." Tsk, Tsk.

-- J Cat

Don't worry, once I post my real picture, there won't be any RPGirls left. Yes, they'll have all fainted dead awa--Er, wait a minute, lady friend? What lady friend...? Aww, man! Is Kimbel telling everyone we're a couple again? He is so dead.

This is either hilarious, or I don't get it.

Yo Thor, most wrathful of gods, with the vengeance and the wrath and the thunder and the lightning and the hey, hey, hey!

In one of your columns, I heard you mention the watered-down American translation of Final Fantasy IV. Being an avid reader of the Q&A column since the days of Andrew Kaufmann, I remember a few times when portions of FFIV were re-translated into REAL English, like the "You Spoony Bard" scene, redone with the word "foo" sprinkled throughout. Here's the re-translation of the part after Cecil defeats Zeromus, and Porom and Palom are back in Mysidia.

(In the Mysidian Elder's House)

Elder: All right! The topic of today's lesson is Transfiguration and Teleportation. Have you been practicing your "Exit" spell?
Porom: Yes, sir.
Elder: What about your "Warp" spell, Palom? Palom...?
Porom: Not again!

(In the woods, Palom is with a girl.)

Palom: And then, I single-handedly killed the teeming hordes of undead on Mt. Ordeals. As you can imagine, I was tired, but no rest for the weary. Cecil needed me to cast my powerful "Ice" spell. He said I was far more heroic than him. Ah, I can tell by the blank look in your eyes that you think so, too. Whaddaya say we find a quieter place where I can show you something, ahem... equally impressive...

(Porom comes in through a hole in the forest and hits Palom.)

Palom: Owowow!
Porom: You perverted little boy!
Palom: I was just going to show her my Flame Rod!
Porom: Yeah, I bet... Our Elder's really mad at you! Come on!

(Back at the Elder's House)

Elder: How many times do I have to tell you not to skip lessons? What do I have to do to get through to a precocious know-it-all? Maybe scribing spells will help you see the importance of lessons!
Palom: Do I have to? I don't feel like it. Oh, MAN.

...and that's how the letter ended. Wow. Guess a lot more than storyline was lost in the translation, eh guys? Now, if only someone could translate Final Fantasy Tactics for me.

One right, one wrong.
(Xenogears/Final Fantasy 7 spoilerz, dewd!)

Dear One With The Oversised Ego,

In Xenogears, when it says "Episode V End" it's talking about Fei. See (takes a lecturing pose), Xenogears was the story of Fei's life, and if you were paying attention Fei also had other lives before that, as the Contact. Now, if you total up his other lives then you get: Life #1. Sole surviver of the starship crash, 10,000 years before Fei. Life #2. Abel (you only see Abel once, when Fei comes to terms with being the Contact, so I'm just guessing as to his placement in this. He could come anywhere between the first and last life). Life #3. Kim, when he and the Elly of his time created Esmeralda. Life #4. Lacan, otherwise known as Grafh. Life #5. Fei, and we all know who he is!

Well, lookit that! Five lives, five episodes! The end of Fei's adventure is the end of life/episode 5. So, unfortunately, no prequels for us. But it was cool of Square to have thought of that.

Yes, yes it was. Thanks to everyone who pointed this out. That's the last time I ask my friends for help on a Xenogears question. Star Trek reference my fat aunt Edna.

Also, I've finally figured out how Barret had a white kid (Marlene). Seeing as how I was the one who wrote in the first letter, I figure I should be able to set the record straight, or at least permenently wrong. Now, Barret was able to preform his genetics-defying feat because, in reality, he isn't black! No, hear me out. You see, his entire body is actually covered with one big, huge birthmark! So, Marlene just got lucky and didn't inherit the mutated allele (this letter assumes you know what an allele is, it's not that complicated and I don't want to explain it to you) that coded for the huge birthmark. This also neatly explains why there are no other black people in the world, not even in his own home town (and yes, I know it got wiped out, but there's a town when you get there isn't there?)

-- SLADE, master of disguise, and, well, everything else too

The best way to deal with people like this is to try and avoid eye contact. For me, it is too late. But you can still save yourselves.

No. No, no, no.

Hey Thor,

I'm faced with a dilemma...I want to buy a super nintendo, so I can re-enjoy all those great Square classics, especially FFVI, but then there is the likely-hood of FFVI: The remake coming to the states!! So what do you think I should do, should I go out and buy a whole new system and a couple of games(that might be hard to find)or should I wait, pray and hope for the best???

Many Thanks,

-- Kai-yip

Right now, the chances look slim. Despite everyone, their entire family and their local city counsel begging for a translation, Square doesn't seem too intent on porting any sort of Final Fantasy collection to America. Buy the SNES. You can find one for cheap on Ebay--one reader scored an SNES for $8. Now that's a bargin. (And no, I'm not getting paid for plugging them, heh heh.)

Old questions don't die, they just wait for the new 'Guru

Alright Thor dude, this isn't sparking any debates or anything, so you gotta print this. I have one simple question for you: I've been playing through Final Fantasy VII again just for fun (kind of a thing to fight my post- Xenogears depression) and I noticed just how much it pissed me off that every moogle in the game is referred to as a "Mog". WHY?!? Mog was my favorite character in FFVI (or one of them at least)!! He deserves no such bashing! The moogles are MOOGLES, not MOGS!!! AHHH!! I'm going CRAZY!! It pisses me off so much!! Is this the fault of Square/Sony's translators? ::Sends them a bomb::


-- Ranma - The Great Xenogears Guru

Oh, you betcha. The ironic thing is that "Moogle" was translated correctly (or, at least, traditionally) in Final Fantasy Tactics. That's right, the FFT translators actually got something right. Ya learn something new every day, eh? Be careful, though: Sony's Evil Lawers are no doubt reading this, and will swiftly sue you for emotional turmoil from your threat.



Imagine a Japanese guy singing "do you really want to hurt me" in English (with a Japanese accent of course). Ha ha. That's good. Yeah.

-- Clouded

At first, I figured this guy was as looney as Slade's Barret theory, but then I took a second to imagine it and... hehe.. that's great. A Boy George song with a Japanese accent! Haha. Hehe. Hoho. Oh my.

Quickie sillyness and off-topic giggling

Seth thanked me for mentioning a Final Fantasy Tactics Storyline For Dummies text file (anyone out there have a few years and a good grasp of Japanese and English?). He also noted that "Thor" rearranged is "R Hot". Allrighty then. // Liam wondered: "The 2+2=5 thing today, was that a 1984 reference or just silliness? Merely morbid curiosity." Uh... yeah... 1984 reference... yeah, that's it. I was making a humor joke. // Some unnamed weirdo wrote: "Hey thor why did you pick such a stupid stupid stupid stupid name. THOR IS MY DOGS NAME. YOU MAYBE A DOG." That's the silliest thing I've ever heard. You don't pick your name, your parents do. And I'm most certainly not a dog. Arf. // vEGO the Carpaithian created this, well, somewhat disturbing picture using the "Anime Thor" from yesterday's column. Groovybeans. I'm flattered someone put this much work into something like this, I'm just really, really scared of my fans now. //

Da Red Gobbo wondered: "What's up with the little references to Cthulhu that are so prolific in your column? Are you some sort of crazed demon worshipper or something?" Cthulhu has nothing to do with satan.. 'Thewy (as his friends call him) has nothing to do with Christian symbology. He's a much more Freudian nightmare than a religious one. However, I've got to admit, being trapped inside the Goat With One Thousand Young for an eternity sounds strangely like hell, only with gooeyness instead of lava. // And finally, a classic "Pinky" (a question I save for later use) from the archives. The Cabbit missed the Day of Lavos and wondered if I could help him find out what it looked like. Strangely enough, I snapped a screenshot and archived it. Don't ask why--it'll cost you two cookies and a neckrub for the answer.

Thor Stuff

Ahh. This week went well, I think. Started off with some debate, moved on to sillyness, then into hard questions, and ended with a little bit of everything. As always, if you guys have any constructive criticism--you know, bash my work but tossin a "You rule anyway, superdude!" at the end--send it in. I love suggestions, unless they have the word "Quit" in them.

Something epic has taken place.

I've decided to do the impossible, to abandon the unabandonable, to surmount the the insurmountable, to... hey, why are y'all giggling like that? Oh for Peat's sake, get your minds out of the gutter--I've decided to bid a fond farewell to Zelda 64 once I beat the Fire Temple and work on beating Xenogears from then on. Goodbye, Zelda 64. We'll always have my save file. <sniff>

Anyhoo, I'll see you guys this Monday. I'll miss each and every one of you (though some more than others). Don't forget to brush your teeth, say your prayers and kiss grandma Gurtha good night. I don't care if she has a mustache, you kiss your grandmother!

- Thor "Ack! The yellow puff is still there!" Antrim
Not much response from Anime Thor. 'Guess the ladies had fainted and the guys were blinded with jealousy.

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