Q&A Confessions
Okay, dig: From now on, I'll do whatever the frag I can think of with my intro. Gotta love waiting for nothing, eh? Seriously though, I thought about wrapping up loose ends here, and then sticking to Thor-ish topics only in Thor Stuff (as opposed to using it as a sort of dumping ground), but then I realized two things:
  1. I don't have loose ends every day. Sometimes I beat the odds and actually get all questions right.
  2. No one would read Thor Stuff if it was just about me every day. Or at least no one who hasn't been previously arrested for stalking.
With that in mind, well, enjoy these letters. Or else.
(Final Fantasy VII spoiler. Win the freaking game already!)
Hey Thor,

You were talking about typos yesterday (the article about "Let's Mosey" on Futurama), and it reminded me of something that has been bugging me ever since I first played Final Fantasy VII. Right after cloud gives Sephiroth the black materia, tifa is laying in bed in Junon and she wakes up and says "ding." What does that mean! I know it's probably a typo, but I've never heard anyone say anything about it. Well, that's about all. 'Off course' you'll print this letter, won't you?!?

- Neo-Deus

In what was, I believe, one of the most powerful scenes of the game, Tifa awakens suddenly, opens her eyes, and whispers: "Ding..."

Um, yeah.

At first I suspected that was like, the second half of a word, and she was knocked unconscious in the previous scene or something, but no luck. After hours of research, I've discovered there is a hidden dream sequence, and that Tifa was dreaming of being a toaster. Right before she could eject two slices of slightly browned rye, she woke up, and, still thinking she was a toaster, said "Ding!" to let everyone know breakfast is ready.

(And if you couldn't tell I'm kidding, I'll have to take immediate measures to ensure you'll never spawn and pass those ace genes on to your mouth-breathing offspring.)

Give it a chance or trade it for Fantastic Four?
Dear Thor,

First time responder, long time reader here. Love the site, visit it everyday, just to read Ask Thor. Now, on to the business at hand. I've been playing Xenogears off and on for the last month. I've clocked about 12 hours and I just can't get into it. Everyone raves about the game, but I have a few problems with it. So far, the whole game feels like it's been playing me. It just seems like the game takes me from place to place and I just sit there and watch. I don't really have any say in what's going on. Will I ever have any freedom over my actions...or is the whole game just a story that I'm supposed to watch unfold and not have any effect on? I'm really trying to get into it, but if this continues, then I just don't want to put in 50+ hours, just to learn the story.

I'm still hopeful,

- Pooh

You won't have all that much more freedom of your actions later in the game. In fact, the second disc is pretty damn linear. At first, I was going to suggest sticking with the game, because Xenogears really is fantastic once you get around twenty hours into it, but it sounds like you'd just be better off with Final Fantasy 7, Kings Field II, Suikoden, or another RPG with more of a "loose" feel to the flow of the game.

And for Cthulhu's sake, stay away from Parasite Eve!

Chuck has the box art blues
Hey Thor:

I'm putting together a webpage about RPGs, and I've been trying to get the text of the back of game boxes. I've found all the ones I need except for Chrono Trigger, Earthbound, and FF 3 (6j). If you know where I could find them, cool, but that's really not why I'm writing.

I've been trying to get the last few words off your image of the FF3 box back, but no matter how hard I try, all I wind up with is serious eyestrain. It reads something like: "Who or what is behind the rediscovery and redeployment of this legendary power? What chaotic plans exist that will wreak havoc on this ???? world?"

Does anyone at RPGamer know what it says? Thanks.

- Chuck Bednar

Yeah, this weird kid named Thor. Tall, kinda gaunt, won't drink anything but coffee... here, let me get him for ya.

Thor: Uh, this is really stupid. Ditch the gimmicks and answer the damn question.

Couldn't agree more. The last paragraph is: "Who or what is behind the rediscovery and redeployment of this legendary power? What chaotic plans exist that will wreck havoc on this orderly world?" Since the image we have is kind of crummy, I went ahead and scanned the back of FF3's box for you myself. It's a little large, but I figured you wanted a high quality scan.

Man, I just realized how boring a read this was for everyone else. Better whip up something wacky to keep their attention...

Don't ask, don't tell. Speculating on RPGamer is fine, though.
Hey Thor. You'll get a kick out of this one...

I have a clever little insight I thought that I might share with the RPGamer community...

One lazy winter afternoon, I was having fun watching my girlfriend hack and slash away at Final Fantasy Tactics. At the time, she about mid-game--at the point where you save Mustadio's father. Anyway, we were engaged in the moderate to difficult battle against two or three female thieves, and some wizards and archers--if my memory holds. I think Mustadio had a Romanda gun equipped at the time, so he was just sitting back, picking off the wizards from a distance when one of the thieves moved in and attempted to charm the poor lad. Luckily, it failed. Whitney kept playing the challenging fight, but another female thief tried her hand at charming Mustadio. Again, she failed. The next time the charm missed, and then after that, the thief's charm simply failed again. We noticed this continuing pattern and she said to me, "You know, they keep missing whenever they try to charm Mustadio..." We looked at each other, simultaneously struck by the same realization... The female thieves could not charm Mustadio because... The flaming little engineer is g a y ! For the rest of the battle, and the day for that matter, we couldn't stop chanting, "No, don't even waste your time trying to charm him. He's not interested--'Stadi's gay..."

(I think one of the reasons we won that battle on the first attempt was that the thieves wasted a good number of turns trying to charm the female resistant Mustadio, allowing our more powerful characters to pound the archers and wizards into the scene's polygonal dirt.)

I warn all fellow players of Final Fantasy Tactics to keep Mustadio away from guy thieves!... You never know when he might come out of the closet at the wrong time and turn on you...

- Field (Baka wa O-jo-sama no des)

Indeed, you never know when the forces of evil could implement a secret weapon. Like Suikoden's Gremio in a g-string, or something.
The title for the following letter is
"the only thing I import is ."

Please Thor, we're hanging here! We're just dying to know what you import! You were about to tell us what we all have been dying to know, but you cut yourself off! How could you do this to all of your fans? :)

- Crono & Dekar

Isn't it obvious? The only thing I import is none other than... incomplete thoughts! (Or stupid mistakes -- your call.)
Illegal activity: Part one
Sony isn't lying about the lockout protection. If you play an ORIGINAL FF8 cd on a chipped ps, a black screen will appear instead of "squaresoft". The guy who said he played an import copy of FF8 is playing on a cd-r copy (as in burned using a pc) of the game that has the protection removed. The gameshark code essentially "cracks" the game. What the PC folks do is make an image of the CD, apply an old-fashioned byte crack that replicates what a gameshark does (cracks the copy protection on the image file by altering a little piece of the game binary), and then burn the newly-cracked image to a cd-r. Essentially what this does is makes it so that when you plop the gold cd-r copy into your playstation, the applied crack invalidates the "mod chip detection thingy" (not sure how they made that work) and the playstation is oblivious to the whole mess and plays the game as normal.

Confused? Eh... not important. The funny part of this whole mess is this:

Basically, the guy who wrote in has just unknowingly admitted to piracy. (Don't worry, no one cares as long as you don't try to sell it... you really deserve a flogging if you try selling a burn anyway... [see e-bay]....)


- jn

Ahh, at last, the mystery solved. Man oh man, I tell ya: No mater what a company can do to try and prevent software piracy, there's always someone just a little bit smarter. You know, I'm no economics expert, but wouldn't it be just a tiny bit more in Square's favor for Americans to import Final Fantasy VIII instead of bypassing them altogether and buying a cheap (yet illegal) cracked disc? It reminds me of when PC games used to be loaded with so many security checks people just avoided buying all games made by the particularly paranoid companies.

Never underestimate the power of an easily annoyed gamer. It's even more powerful than your average male's hatred for Leonardo DiCaprio, so you know we're dealing with some potent forces, here.

Rusty? Spike? Can you help me for a minute?
Got a puzzler of a question for you; dunno if *you* know the answer, but maybe you can spread the word and find someone who does. I saw this CD cover while surfing randomly:

I don't know what game it's to. Yeah, there's that big chocobo, but I don't know of a Square game that would fit that picture precisely. Can you help me out?

No can do -- how 'bout you guys?
Illegal activity: Part two
Hey, Thor. What's up?
The sky! That's what is "up"!! Hahaahha! Hehehee! Kill me.
I have a minor favor to ask of you. I hang out in a small RPG chat room called The RPG Bunker. We all know each other there, and we're the closest online friends there ever were.

We pulled a major prank on MTV's Total Request Live March 10th. We all got onto and requested "Hangin' Tough" by the New Kids On The Block 25 times each.

The song rocketed to #2 for one day, got the highest number of e-mail votes ever, and disappeared the next day.

I'm taking the initiative again, this time for "Girl You Know It's True" by Milli Vanilli on March 12. Could you do me a gigantic favor and make this prank known in the Ask Thor column? Just in the Thor Stuff would do, please. We want #1 this time! YEAH!

- Evan Jones

Geez, Ask Thor is turning into confession. Next thing you know, we'll get a tear-stained letter from Sony's president, admitting that the PlayStation does have a rather unusual skipping problem, and offering a $40 mail-in rebate to anyone who purchased a PlayStation since September 10th, 1995.


Hey, wait. March 12? Isn't this April?

Cooler 'n Southpark
I say the "Let's mosey" bit in Futurama was intentional. Why? The Simpsons has a long history of inserting jokes only a few people will get, for example the trivia questions in the special that had inaccurate answers, and the Lion King's appearance in the clouds ("You must avenge my death, Kimba - I mean Simba." in reference to the old anime show that TLK was ripped off from)

- Charlie Tangora

Cool. I dig The Simpson's style. I also dig that a Mystery Science Theater 3000 cast member worked on that show for a good deal of time. Er...

I have nothing to say here. Believe me, I tried. I thought about it since I first read this letter. I even thought of mentioning it in Thor Stuff. Which is probably what I should be doing now; erasing this letter and typing up a quick sentence in Thor Stuff. But ya know what? I'm not going to. I'm a rebel, baby -- I don't play by the rules. Now brace yourself, 'cause it's time for a Quickie or two.

Did the Boys Town National Hotline hang up on you?
Ask Thor
(Just don't tell me about your icky personal problems.)
Like Old Crap?
Try the Archives
(Beware the Typoes)
Bored? Easily amused? Stoned?
The Hack Archive
Thor Antrim: Anime Style
(Edit me. It's fun.)
Quickies that satisfy
you do realise that an orgy is "3 or more people having sexual intercourse"? how many people do you date at once? Just the one. An orgy isn't only group sex, kid. It's pretty much any kind of unrestrained party. It can be excessive sexual indulgence, drunken revelry, or even "something that resembles an orgy in lack of control or moderation". Ya know, It's generally not a good idea to get your definitions off the bathroom wall -- unless you happen to be in Merriam-Webster's john, or something.
Dude! That 'quote of the day thing' is from me! whats the deal?

-Ami Q3

The deal is, you would have won Quote of the Week if not for the unfortunate HTML problems. Congratulations! Er, I think.
In response to Paggledutas' note of a creature called a Blargg hiding in lava: Have a look at Tetris Attack. One of the playables (such as a character can really be playable in a puzzle game) is named Gargantua Blargg, and he lives in/on/near a volcano.
- Sensei Le Roof
But "Blargg" isn't al that cool. Good ol' "Blarg" is it, man!
- Sorbie
Yes, please.
Thor Stuff

Thanks for all the mail revealing the purpose of Shadow Zero. Although the webmaster of the Secret of Mana Palace and a few others say that the Ninja is nothing more than window dressing, several others reported he's a "trap" of sorts, and drops your hit points to 1, or 0. (A trap that drops the HP of whoever opened the box sounds reasonable, and I vaguely remember that happening, so unless that was just a fabricated memory brought on by too many screenshots, walkthroughs and Citras, I'm going to go with that.)

I know the Archive isn't updated, I'll get to that once all the missing Ask Thor's return.

Did you know that SoBe strawberry grapefruit elixirs are tasty? I sure didn't -- until today!

After months of forcing co-workers to update me, due to an awful connection to RPGamer's server, I was able to post Ask Thor all by myself today. Score one for the T-Man!

Since Square isn't very interested in Moogles these days, why not lease them out? I'd love to see Moogles show up in the Lunar or Lufia series...

Well, that was utterly insane. I'd better get going before I slip up and mention what I'm chewing on while I type this. Night!

Shadow Zero Attack Mega! Thor "Deadry Ninja" Antrim
You'll never know.

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