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ASK ANDREW
Lonely, Oh So Lonely
February 27, 2007

Andrew Long - 16:05 EST

APPARENTLY, Ouro has become more powerful than I can possibly imagine, so it would appear I'm flying solo until Matt gets back next week. It's cool, I guess. He's got other things to do and and and wahhhhhhhhhh! Why won't anyone stay here? ;_;




LETTERS
Unfit for Print


Hello again,

So I've been playing RPG's since the days of "Dragon Warrior" and " Final Fantasy" and the other day I began to wonder, which of the many out there have the best narrative. Not something that has a ton of sidequests, fall out of your sit "Really thats whats realy going on moments.. No something that simple put makes since from point A to point B... at least as far as the games world makes sense. I mean how does adding a tailor in Suikoden 4 make your team go, "Finally, now that we look fabulous we can take on that army" or having to do some crazy chore for the many very lazy citizans on RPG land. Getting something from a haunted castle full of demons and monsters to give to a old man so I can finally move on through the gate I could have jumped doesnt make for good storytelling, it makes for padding.

Koudelka had a pretty good narrative. Three strangers alone in a abandoned monestary (at least I think) have to find a way out. FFXII was pretty good to, but there were a few to many "We need this item to move forward" moments. I like games alot and will comtinue to play them for a long while yet, but there are a lot of things that bother me. My question to you is what game made the most sinse to you, what had the best narrative flow? Jeez, sorry didn't mean to rant like a crazed person for so long. Thanks.

Arkadysmile "Waiting on his copy of Suiko3 to come in the mail"

P.S. Tax season is upon us here in the states and I seem to be getting a bit back. I think that I would like to get a DS, but the only game I really am stoked for is a copy of FFVI.. Any ideas on 1 or two more to pick up when I get my refund?

Andrew

Best narrative, eh? I see you've kind of disqualified FFXII, but honestly, that game has impressed me to no end with its plot, and while I agree that there does tend to be a certain amount of runaround for items, you're just not going to avoid that in an RPG, it seems. All in all, I'm willing to forgive them that since the dialogue is pretty much the best I've seen in an FF game. Another good title for its plot is BoF V. Not only does it choose an unconventional means of exposition, it also contains a story that isn't your run-of-the-mill RPG fare. Also, I have high hopes for the PSP release of FFT, at least, assuming they knock the rough edges off the translation. Just think; we may finally get a chance to find out what they meant by "tortured thieves!"

As to your P.S., there is so very much to get stoked over on the DS. There's Castlevania: PoR, which I'm playing through right now and loving, Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time, FF III DS, heck, there's still Mariokart to play! So I say take the plunge.



The moon called and it wants its ramblings back


Why, why was Final Fantasy 12 so easy........I beat it by mistake. I was just looking around then BAAAMM!!! It was over.....WHY WHY WAS IT OVER......

Please tell me that Final Fantsy 13/2 will be better.

Now on to the real issue Kingdom Hearts 2 Final mix, When will it come man tell me......please.....

seraphjoe@hotmail.com

Andrew

It was easy because you touch yourself at night. As to the telling you what you want to hear, sure, why not? FF13/2, whatever that is, will be all that and a bag of chips. And KH2 final mix? Oh, it's coming. It's just that S-E hasn't said much of anything since announcing it back in September, so I really can't tell you when. I could make up a date if you'd like, though. How's March 15th for you? I mean, if you're anything like this in person you can't possibly have plans. Seriously though, EGM claims fall here, March 29 in Japan.



Zohar's day-saving letter finally gets to save the day, three days after the fact


Zero letters?! That means by the end of the day you'll have about 30 or something...

Nevertheless, Zohar to the rescue (somewhat). Got Rogue Galaxy. Comical at times though I haven't played a lot yet. Battle is slightly more hectic than what I thought it would be and I wish there was a simple way to face the enemy you're targeting

It's pretty, that's for sure. However, I noticed that the background isn't very alive... I mean, when I'm standing still, the only thing that moves is water and characters breathing (and also, NPCs). Even FFX had plants swaying in the winds.
Andrew

I dunno... some of those plants swayed a little too much, if you know what I mean. Seriously, if you know, tell me. I have no idea why I said that.

Isn't it strange that a game that came out when the system was launched can still compare to games coming out close to the system's end? FFVII had much worse graphics than FFIX, FFIV had worse graphics than FFVI (and certainly Chrono Trigger). There weren't that many differences between FFI and FFIII on the original NES, as I recall. Maybe the PS2 was just more accessible (similar to programming on a computer maybe?).
Andrew

I don't think your basis for comparison is quite fair. Atlus has never been one to concentrate on graphics, whereas S-E is all about it, so to say that an old S-E game looks better than a new Atlus one is no big stretch, because old Atlus games usually look like ass when put alongside S-E titles too. That said, there really isn't much difference between FFX and FFXII, other than the fact that they jacked the contrast up some in XII. That sky in the zones around Rabanastre sure is blue!

I think that taking graphics in games to a surreal direction is a very good idea in modern games. Sure, it can be nice to play a game which looks real but it isn't always very interesting. It's comparable to what happened with painting a hundred years ago - the camera came out and there was no need for portraits anymore, so artists started painting blue squares (I was surprised to find out that Picasso painted some incredibly lifelike pictures before he started his whole messed up theme).
Andrew

Really? Most abstract artists learn standard art theory before wandering off into the sunny fields of randomness. You can't really create a good painting if you don't know the fundamental theories of artistic design, so it should come as no surprise that Picasso was able to paint realistically as well as the manner in which his later work was done. I agree, though; surreal looks are pretty sweet, as long as they're done well, which is one reason why to this day I don't understand why so many people bitched about Wind Waker's graphics.

This seems like an exciting time where the consoles' computing prowess is great enough to allow practically anything the designers can think of. Now they can stop having a contest of "My game looks realer than yours" and really go for imaginative design. I know it's not just now, there have been games like that on the PSX, but it seems like when there's no reason for photo-realism, designers can abandon it completely. What do you think?

Zohar Gilboa

Andrew

Heh. They CAN do that, but they won't. Take this quote from a Sony executive today: "I think Nintendo, although I am very respectful of the innovation in Wii, and I think everybody should be respectful of it, I'm not sure that it has the technology base to propel that platform in the long-term. So I think their platform lifecycle is inherently going to be shorter, so they could have learned from us in terms of the high technology approach."

So there you have it; because the Wii lacks "technology" (eg, graphics), their current sales won't last, honest! I wonder how long Sony is going to keep telling themselves that before they just admit they've messed up and try to actually correct the situation. It had better be soon, although, they seem content to preen over the fact that they have units in stores, while the Wii is sold out, apparently a good thing! With THAT justification, here's the same representative:

" I know we are achieving our goals of keeping the market supplied and working closely with retailers to make sure they get informed about when supplies are coming in so that they can match their internal and external communications to store managers and consumers about when to buy a PS3. If that means that for Wednesday through Friday there were a few machines on a shelf in a store in Milwaukee, great,"

So that would explain the forlorn stack of 6 PS3s in a local store! It's just good supply chain, not nobody buying them. What a relief!



Dre-e-e-e-eam, dream dream dream


You know what would be cool?

rpgamer.com on my cell.

--Carabbit

Andrew

Yes. Yes it would. May I recommend one of those internet-capable phones? Cuz I don't think we have any particular plans for the cellphone market at present ^^;; Good to hear from you, anyway, Cara.



Shameless plugs? That's a paddlin'


o Andrew, Matt, or whoever is filling in at the moment

I recently discovered an indepently developed RPG by the name of Aveyond and I thought I'd share it with the fine people at RPGamer. It's been around since 2006 but I only discovered it through an article in GamesTM magazine about Manifesto Games, a website which specialises in publishing games by indie developers.

Aveyond is that rarest of breeds - a console style RPG on the PC. Those of you with a passion for Final Fantasy or games of the SNES era will love it as everything has been lovingly crafted in 2D sprites. The difficulty can be a bit harsh but old school games will probably be used to that anyway and relish the challenge.

There's also a completely free prequel called Ahriman's Prophecy which is well worth a download.

You can buy Aveyond or download a 3 hour demo at:
http://www.manifestogames.com/aveyond

and download the prequel here:
http://www.amaranthia.com/

Ice^Tiger

PS. I don't work for either company, honest! I just thought some of your readers would appreciate these game.

Andrew

Thanks for sharing, Tiger. Try and keep the shameless plugs to a minimum, yes?

IN CLOSING

Okay, so we're gonna need a lot more letters for tomorrow. To give you something to think about, what would it take for Sony to get you to buy a PS3? If you already have one, what was it that persuaded you to pick one up? I'm genuinely curious here, because for me it will take either FFXIII and positive reviews thereof, or a hefty price drop, to the tune of at least 350 bucks from its current pricetag. The GDC is also fast approaching, and more and more information is being made available about FFXII: RW all the time! So drop me a line, we'll shoot the breeze. Or at least, do that without the cheesy slang!



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Andrew Long is bored, entertaaaain him!


Shredder, build me a body!

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