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It's Whisper Quiet!

Andrew Long - June 12, 2004 19:12 EDT

I AM LUXURIATING IN THE GOODNESS of a freshly-formatted orange crate as we speak, having finally been pushed over the brink by an embarassing game of Warcraft which involved me sitting there with an army one minute, the computer freezing briefly, and then gaping in horror as the next two minutes proceeded in the hellish blur of my computer stubbornly refusing to render the battle, resulting in a screenshot-like series of horrors, which chiefly involved my 60 food's worth of knights, priests, an MK and a pally getting torched. Yes, random browser crashes on any site that uses Java plagued me; it took ten seconds to load even the simplest window; and shutdowns were an epic journey of shuddering, disk reading, and a mule trip to Siam to capture the elusive desert hamster, but I soldiered on. You do not, however, mess with Warcraft.



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A man after my own heart

Am I the only one who gets tired of people having this whole 'holier-than-thou' feeling about Japanese, because they've managed to spend a couple semesters studying it? My aunt was a missionary in the country for forty years. She was one of the first non-military westerners to show up in the country. She's, very likely, in the very top of Anglican Japanese speakers. And what do I find from her? That most of the time, she very rarely has a concrete translation for something, and that most things they say (or have sloganized), have several meanings until you get a chance to clarify with the person who said it.

This comes about from the letter someone wrote yesterday about how Nippon-ichi doesn't mean 'Japan is #1', but that it means 'Best in Japan'. In the end? Either is a valid translation. Just because the proper, formal, 'I learned this in Japanese 101' phrase is different from what you see doesn't mean anything. It could mean several things, if you wanted to translate it. But, given the way Japanese tend to romanticize things, my personal best guess is that it's mostly something like 'A1'. Like 'A1 Communications' or 'A1 Steak Sauce'. It might not mean anything except sort of a catchphrase.

Finally, for the record, you'd use 'ga' instead of 'wa' in the formal translation, and more likely, it'd be slurred together into 'Nippon`ichida'. The use of 'wa' in the song, is for literary reasons, to soften the impact of the reverence of Fuji, and to circumspectly attribute it to greatness in Japan, rather than making the statement flat out.

Post-Finally, am I the only one who noticed that I started out complaining about 'holier-than-thou' sentiment, and then sort of exuded some of it myself?

Thanks for sharing, holier-than-thou. I assure you, you're not the only person who this irritates, as I'm fairly certain that as Google was printing that letter yesterday, my friend who has studied Japanese for the past eight years felt a disturbance in the force and no doubt immolated whatever was handy in a random fit of annoyance. It also bugs me, since I'm fairly sure a lot of the people who try it are in fact, as you say, people who have been through a couple semesters of Japanese. It's funny that it's only that language that inpsires such bizarre behaviour in its enthusiasts - you don't usually see people who have been through one or two semesters of French or Spanish constantly debating over translation details, and you especially don't see people with no grounding at all in those languages pretending to know on the basis of overheard conversation or a crackerjack box.

Either way, you did indeed become the very thing you hate, and I hate to break it to you, but "my aunt can beat up your aunt" is a fairly holier-than-thouish statement to kick things off with. Nevertheless, I do feverishly hate such discussion, since I just don't care (and besides, people who use random Japanese without firm knowledge of its meaning are just looking to get called out as idiots.) And, now that half of you want to kill me and the other half will doubtless send in letters with Japanese gibberish in the titles tomorrow, let's move along!

On topic? Crazy!

Hi andrew,

I've been a longtime reader here, so I figured I'd make my first written contribution to you. I believe the topic is the new Musashi title? In reference to the title itself, I think Musashi Samurai Legend flows off the tongue about as well as the title for the first game, as in not so much. But since it will most likely be called Musashi 2 by most everyone, it probably doesn't matter that much. As for the game itself, I'm happy to see square-enix looking to other past properties that don't have the name final fantasy in them to craft sequels to. I enjoyed the first Musashi, though it had plenty of problems just begging to be fixed in a sequel. I hope that this is a sign that square-enix will revisit other old properties, as well as return to releasing fantastic original titles as both companies did in the Playstation and SNES era. Now if only we can see a Valkyrie Profile sequel....please? Pretty please?

-Dasro Kast-

Careful what you wish for, Dasro... I remember all too well the five years following Chrono Trigger when I sacrificed a newborn hamster each night in prayer for a sequel, and look what we got! Now that I think about it, I bet God was trying to spite me for my abhorrent religious practices. Either that or I ran out of hamsters too fast. Regardless, I like these unwished for sequels much better, because they come without the three years of anticipatory dreams, petitions, and message board angst (and as you say, a BFM sequel with attention paid to detail sounds like a good thing to me.)


Hey Andrew,

You know it is unfortunate that I am usually unable to check the site every day, because I usually wind up a little behind on my comments and questions.

First, I just checked my clock on BG&E in response to the guy who said that he didn't understand how I could have spent over 30 hours on the game. First, I didn't say I had spent over thirty hours, I said over 20. Second, that was an estimation since I had never actually checked the clock, and as it turns out I was completely wrong. I am actually at just over 10 hours, so his number would probably be pretty close. That being said, people really should not be turned off by that number since it is still a spectacular game and I do not feel at all cheapened by the length. I think it was long enough to tell the story without putting in a bunch of filler.

Second, as to the guy who commented on how easily GC disks scratch, I would say he is out to lunch. As an employee of a store that deals in used games, I can tell you that GC games seem to be much more durable than PS, PS2, or XB games. We rarely get a used GC game that is scratched, while we get many games from other systems that look like the owner stood on the disk and spun around. I believe this is probably due to the fact that they have a smaller surface area and therefore a lower likelyhood of receiving a scratch.

Yeah, I have to second that. Every frigging copy of Panzer Dragoon Saga in Whitby is carved to shreds, causing disaster when my Xbox attempts to struggle through them.

Third, my favorite (or maybe least favorite) game getting memory would be the X-mas I got my NES. I remember I got so excited that I opened the wrap about halfway at which point I promptly stood up, ran upstairs to the bathroom and threw up....uh...well anyway it is definately a memorable moment.

Heh... The only Christmas gift I can ever remember making me puke was this lousy play dough one of my aunts made. I mean, I was only five, but who gives a kid some tainted flour with food colouring as a present? That's just shabby.

And finally, I can not say that I am that excited about the new Musashi title. I did not really have a memorable experience with the first one. Primarily because I played it with a Gameshark and the game just isn't the same when you can fly. Of course I don't hold that against the game and the next one certainly could be great, but I will wait and see. I tend to be very selective about what I buy.


Fair enough. I should probably mention I never did end up buying BFM, but instead borrowed it for about half a year from my neighbour. Even so, I have fond memories of the game, since I played it right around the same time I went through SotN. Also, that was back when I could eat candy. Mmm, mmm, candy.

Quoth the raven: "In your face, bitch!"


Crows versus Ravens? No contest: Ravens.

If you don't want to take my word for it though, then take a look at this guy's pop-up-licious Angelfire website. And we all know nothing says authority like an Angelfire website.

-Red Raven

Damn straight... Why go to the li-barry when you can just read the cracked-out rantings of an aging hippie who thinks God liked slavery? Seriously... I may have gotten 7/12 on that essay, but the fact that my TA accepted it at all confirms my suspicions that my degree is going to come on a $50,000 square of toilet paper.

And, when we left our heroes last week...


First, in response to the guy yesterday bashing nintendo (I'm sure you're getting plenty of these). I have two minor things to say. First, I love Nintendo for the same reason I love Squeenix - while Sony and Microsoft go with "what's hot", and keep pumping out more of the same, Nintendo is willing to take the challenge of going a different route and deliver innovation. And for neither Nintendo or Squeenix has this always worked (Virtual Boy..............), but they keep doing it anyway, for the sake of the gamers. I don't want to play upgrade after upgrade of the same old crap.
My second comment is about his remark towards Four Swords, Crystal Chronicles costing too much money. Let's consider something in comparison to PS2 here.

Gamecube $100
Four Swords Adventures: $50
Link Cables: $0-30 (I am hoping you have at least one friend with a link cable if he has a GBA, and you got one free with FSA. And you could have just preordered FFCC for $5, got the cable and never picked up the game... or something..)
GBA(s): $170 - We'll even go out on a limb and say you have a GBA and GBASP. I somehow doubt you are going to buy your friends GBAs...

Yeah that's it. So if you want to play this game, estimated cost, $320-$350. And heck, if you just have one friend with a GBA and a link cable, minimum (and more likely) cost is $220.

On the other hand.

PlayStation 2 $150 (and just recently at that)
Final Fantasy XI + Hard Drive $100
Network Adapter $40
6 months subscription (1 free month) $60 ($12 x 5 months)
(guessing at how long you would play...)

Oh look. $350. How ironic. And I even left out the $30 keyboard. What it comes down to is basically, whether you actually have friends. I mean friends with GBAs. And well, that's your own situation to deal with. But considering how many college kids play video games, I'm sure you can borrow four GBAs from various people in your dorm next year, and heck maybe even make nerd friends through games like this. That you can actually see. (Before any FFXI arguments arise)

Don't get me wrong, like I said I love Squeenix, and I own a PS2 although it doesn't get much love. I'm just sick of hearing how the connectivity thing is so expensive when other companies and games pull the same stunt.

New RPGs are more often than not too long, resulting in me playing them until burnout and then putting them down 1/2 to 3/4 of the way done for 6-9 months before finishing. Which can leave me very confused story-wise.

Best game-getting memories - A Link to the Past for Christmas one year, and my grandmother randomly buying me Secret of Mana in the summer of 1995. Sweet, succulent memories.



You know, Mastercard is pure evil, because I couldn't read those lists without being reminded of their blasted ad campaign. Anyhow, your comparison adds up very nicely... As long as you want to play FFXI. I know it's satisfying your multiplayer requirements, but there are PS2 games that don't require online to be multiplayer, so it would probably be fairer to compare 4-Swords to one of them. I'm not saying I agree with the assessment that 4-Swords isn't worth it, because it is, but these kinds of statistics are part of the reason why George Bush can look people in the eye and say his economic policy is sound without cracking up.

Red- the most delicious of the deadly shorts


Well, it seems my shopping brigade ended in a pair of red shorts, three misc. novelty tees, and a spiffy black Dickies shirt. Wait, can I say that on Q&A? Well, may the bonds be broken as we rant on about nothingness. Gamestop has FFAnthology and FFChronicles for about $18, and I happened to see Parasite Eve. ^^ My list will be full of available games! As I was sifting through Barnes & Nobles, I came across quite a bit of books that shun liberalism and praise conservatism. Now, I'm with the whole live how you believe, but it was just kind of ironic. One commends Bush as a saint of saintly deeds and another said we must defeat liberalism. Why destroy something the country was founded on? Maybe I'm just being unamerican and should become Canadian, but that's just randomopium for ya. So I leave you with a story and question. The other day at the pet store I was playing with the kittens and their adorableness. One in particular, was white with black spots, and these markings happened to make it look like Hitler's mustache was implanted on its face. Of course I'll get a cat in the future. Here's the question, how should I go about obtaining a kitten? Go to the pound? Shop around on the black market? Well, this letter comes to a close without a reference to ravens or crows. Ravens all the way because it sounds somewhat pleasanter.


O' Shrouded One

You have to remember, there are a sizeable number of conservatives who think that the best way to deal with things they don't like is to destroy them, or at least keep them out of sight. It's hard to pretend something doesn't exist when it's right in your face, after all. As to getting kittens, the best way is to find someone whose cat got it on recently, because they're usually desperate to unload them without all the costly little technicalities shelters tend to tack on. That said, going to a shelter is the socially responsible thing to do.

Unfit for Print

Maybe you can help me. I am trying to get in touch with Jason Ely. Can you help? Thanks!

Christie Waters

Yeah, Jase and me go waaaaay back! Did he ever tell you about the time back in '99 when we got really hammered and threw rocks at a train? It was craaaaazy! The train totally stopped and the conductor got out with this angry look on his face and rolled up his sleeves to fight us but then we ran into the forest and he chased us but this bear totally mauled him! In conclusion, trains are cool!

Unfit for Print: the Redumbening

hey im doin this thing on AIM and i need to know where chocobos originated from could you help me out

AIM, eh? Funny how that guy yesterday said there was a contest at S-E's homepage. You trying to Bogart all the prizes for yourself? Are you? ARE YOU? Because let me tell you, I wants my prize, and I wants it now! And another thing! Cmere a minute! Yeah, that's right, you! This question has been asked more than twenty times, so stick it in your stinking FAQ already!

Thus concludes the drunken rant portion of this evening's festivities. A brisk lunch of crackers and olives will now be served on the terrace, followed by Gin and Whist in the Drawing Room.


Well, nobody seems to care about BFM except me, so for tomorrow, we'll talk about gaming moments that inspire deadly rage. For me, the most memorable was in FFVI and realizing that X-Zone totally kills Wrexsoul in one turn after hammering futilely at him for two hours (since I hadn't saved in the entire dream sequence for some unknown reason.) Since FM4 has, in fact, been out for three days, it is also fair game. I should warn you, however, that after being utterly confounded by the demo of FM3 that came with Vagrant Story, I have foresworn all titles in the series, so asking me about it is likely to be nothing but trouble.
Andrew Long could break into a Pink song at this point, but that would be just plain sadistic!



Which is why I saved it for the hidden text! Yeah, I'm trouble, I'm trouble! And so forth.

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