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questionanswer&andrew


And the Winner Is....

Andrew Long - September 12, 2004 01:43 EDT

I HAVE DETERMINED THE NATURE of the next fabulous prize*, and it is a doozy. That's right, the third-place winner, who selected Iggy Koopa, will receive a prize befitting a name that Locke didn't really like - a vintage set of Turtle-themed paper airplanes folded by yours truly, along with a Canadian ten dollar bill, also folded into a paper airplane so as to maintain a general theme for the prize. The retail value of this fabulous prize* is a never-before seen level, approaching $4 US, so the fabulous prize-winner should be thanking their lucky stars they came up with Iggy.

Anyhow, to cases: Locke has finally managed to track me down, and so there will be cohosting... Oh, yes, there will be cohosting. On the downside, I'm even more tired than I was yesterday, so don't expect anything terribly coherent. I have, however, been known to ramble on endlessly about my adventures in the spice mines of Kandahar, which may or may not have taken place exclusively in my fevered imagination, which is a hundred degrees if it's a dozen. Yes, the sand is warm, the spices are warmer, and the turtles flow like moonshine... But that will have to wait.

LockeZ

Hail. I'm the legendary LockeZ. You may recognize me from such events as "Name LockeZ's turtle" and "Vote for a name for LockeZ's turtle." I will be your guest host for today. Some information about me: I am an obnoxious individual, a cynical brat, and a terrible human being. I'm obligated to plug my website, B. U. R. G. E. R.. I rant about things that piss me off, write tabloids about Tom Cruise being eaten by a metroid, host my RPG Maker game which is perfectly totally unsuspiciously legal and not at all created with pirated software, and draw a stick figure webcomic. My favorite quote is, "If violence doesn't solve your problems, you're not using enough."



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Listing and conspiracies: together at last


::Jumps into Casto's lap::

Castonamingway,

First, to answer some questions asked previously: no, Beatrix dosen't die, if you recall, she's seen in the ending alongside Steiner, blocking Garnet's path. The NES Dragon Warriors all kick varying degrees of ass, though I prefer DW3s class system to DW4s chapter system. If you've ever played through Chapter 3 (Taloon's chapter), you know EXACTLY how painful it can get. And DW7 is great, if you're into long games with lots of levelling up, but otherwise just go with the predecessors.

As for my fave Final Fantasys, I'm somewhat shocked that most put number 5 so close to the bottom... the story sucked, but I loved what they did with the job system. In order, I'd say: 6-10-7-1-5-4-9-8-2. Yes, I know I'm going to be cussed out for putting 4 below 5, but... it was kind of stupid how they kept killing off the characters just so you could add new ones. As for FFVIII, I've said it before, I'll say it again, the Junction system was smurfed up beyond repair.

So, onto the topic... bad RPG names. Well, aside from the aforementioned Taloon (what was his mother thinking...?), I'd keep with the "dissing CC names" tradition and submit "Draggy" to your mocking pleasure. Come on, naming a baby dragon "Draggy" is like naming a human child "Humie". Between that and the fungus mentioned yesterday, I think they really could have done better.

Finally, in responce to yesterday's conspiracy, it's made pretty clear in FFX-2 that Spira is actually the same world as in FF7, only centurys in the past. I mean, some Al-Bhed kid named Shinra said he was trying to come up with an alternate source of fuel derived from the planet... how much more blatant can they be? There are actually a few cutscenes where he basically describes his dreams of Midgar (though he obviously hasn't come up with the name yet) and Yuna cheers him on. Kinda morbid, if you think about how it all goes down.

Ah, enough rambling! Off to sleep!

NeoCarbuncle
mmm, sleep...

ANDREW
Okay, we can all pretty much agree that CC had the worst pack of names imaginable. From Poshul to "Kid" for a kid, "Lynx" for a jungle cat (albeit, a bipedal jungle cat), "Harle" for a harlequin and oh so many more, it makes me wonder why Frog seems so much less egregious in comparison. Perhaps it's because at least Frog had an alter ego, and was much closer to Porre, which is evidently dumping something into the water that severely reduces the ability of people to name things creatively.

And I say it again: I ignore FFX-2 in all its evil, from its crappy music to its apparent lust for connecting random crap that doesn't need connecting.

LOCKEZ

Chrono Trigger had a frog named Frog, a robot named Robo, and a mage named Magus. So I guess it was kind of keeping with tradition for them to make horrid names. But it was still annoying and tacky. On the note of FF7 references, every game since FF7 has had a reference to Cloud and his sword, so we must assume that they are all the same world! Oh, wait, that would be dumb. My bad.


the ol' used Saturn gambit


Hi Andrew

I am a first time questioner and a long time reader. I recently bought a sega Saturn for 20 $ with two controllers Nights into dreams and Panzer dragoon: Zewi. I was wondering as the old age RPGamer what Rpg's are worth my time and money? Also I was wondering is beyond the beyond a good Rpg or is it a complete waste of money.

from mogexpress.netfirms.com
I say please visit me

Mogexpres

ANDREW
I'm not exactly the best person to ask this question of, as Google is the one with the Saturn kicking around in his basement, but of the top of my head, I know there were several Camelot games and a good version of Castlevania: SotN that had three playable characters.

And if you really have to ask that second question, there is no hope for you. Beyond the Beyond is the longest running joke in RPG history, and yes, it is most definitely one of the worst RPGs anywhere and if you ever see it you should run far, far away.

LOCKEZ
I've never even seen a Sega Saturn. If I had to recommend a game for it, though, Shining Force 3 and Dragon Force are both on GameFAQs' top ten for the system. As is Princess Maker2, I should add, which from the title sounds like an RPG Maker type thing for making Barbie games.


You may mention Robert Jordan, but only because it is derogatorily


On the subject of bad video game names FFT is a real gold mine! I mean you can't go wrong with Ramza or Zalbag, better yet, Dycedarg Gafgarion. I mean people don't even have that crappy names in books by Jordan and Eddings. And they've made up some pretty crappy names throughout the years. And the theory of FFX being rooted in Tifa's bar was about the most the stupid thing I've ever heard. By the way, I've gotta ask you americans something. In FF7 there's a scene where Sepiroth invites Cloud to the reunion in Nibelheim. Later Cloud says he doesn't even know what a reunion is. I found that to be hillarious in it's shher oddity. I've got to ask; is this unique to the PAL version or did he say that in the US as well?

Well, thanks
Carl Greder

ANDREW
"Us Americans", eh? Well, as surely as I am a proud flag-waving American, I am happy to report that I completely remember that scene and make sweet sweet love under its soft glow every night.

LOCKEZ
That was indeed in the North American release. It was probably a bad translation, meaning to say something like "Renunion? What are you talking about?"


The typewriting monkey responsible for this error has been shot


Hey! Thanks for the fast answer. I'm still amazed by it ^_^

Anyway, you replied "...until a Japanese "International" rerelease, as in the case of FFX. I would expect to see the latter, since that's the route Square went last time."

But with FFX International Square decided to keep the English voice acting (why, oh why?! They actually prefer the English voice acting to their own?) and just implement Japanese and English languages for all the text and options and stuff like that? Or am I confusing the game with another one?

-Quincy

ANDREW
You are correct, sirrah, and I apologize for my slip. As to whether Japanese gamers prefer English, I can only assume that there is a market like myself that would much rather hear corny lines in a different language so that their impact is much less.


Randomblings


I think the upcoming expo in New York is a great idea. It means that videogames are becoming that much more recognizable by the masses, which in turns means more games produced for us players. Unfortunatelly, it has no value itself for me since I don't like MMORPGs.

That Chrono Resurrection game looked kind of cool. I don't think it would have been better than the original Chrono Trigger, since there's just something special about 2D rpgs(maybe because they don't make them anymore), but it would have been interesting to at least see what some of the characters and location looked like in 3D.

And what's up with all these pro-FF8 people out there? And just when i thought the game had no fans. Where are all the FF8 haters like me? I mean, if a game is so poorly made that only those who spend ridiculous amounts of hourse powering up and use a FAQ are able to pass it, then the game just isn't worth playing. Not to mention the horrid story.

And as for the mandatory question, why all the hatred for Chrono Cross? I know you're said it before, but what about that game really made you hate it? I thought it had a great battle system, and an interesting story. Plus it was cool to see all the small references to Chrono Trigger throughout the game. Maybe I enjoy it more because I consider the game more of an homage to CT than an actual sequel. Anyone else out there enjoyed this game?

The City Hunter

ANDREW
I hate CC because a)it shat upon the story of one of my two favorite games ever, b)the endings were mercilessly stupid, c)I got stuck for 17 hours because I didn't clue in that you have to walk through a wall to get to Guile, who I needed to talk to for some reason, d)the bloody accents, and e)the wholly unnecessary characters.

LOCKEZ
The deal with FF8 suddenly becoming popular is that the only people still talking about it are the few who liked it. They're still few and far between, though they're slowly growing, fed by nostalgia. But the rest of us stopped complainingabout FF8 years ago. We don't care any more.

I hated Chrono Cross for entirely different reasons, namely the magic system and the way normal attacks are done. Having 43 or 108 worthless characters in agame is fine as long as I don't develop an ulcer from entering the battle commands.


This legal interlude brought to you by some dodgy lawyers from Buffalo


Technically, there is no difference in the impropriety of Fan Fiction, Fan Art, and the Chrono Redundan-- err, Ressurection. Square Enix has the right and privilege to sue over any of them. But, they won't. First, because no court would grant them an injunction for the Fan Fiction, and because the Fan Art is free advertising for the most part.

The only time it'll become an issue is when you're either a) making money they feel they should be making (which is whenever you're making money) off of their stuff or b) when you're taking money away from them. In the first case, since the fan art and fan fiction are both free and largely harmless (if, admittedly, rather dumb in most cases), they'll leave it alone. But, when the CR team starts copying a game verbatim and giving it away for free, it's eating into the company's profits (especially when they just released a rerelease of the game). This is definitely a case where they're iron-clad in their rights.

Think of it this way. If I really like Resident Evil: Apocalypse (Which was pretty bad, by the way), and I take a poster, make a collage out of it, and stick it in the window of my truck as an advertisement for it, I'm helping the company. If I make my own film about zombies and the umbrella corporation and stupid blonde girls that should get eaten named Alice, I can always label it a parody or indulging in creative license. But, now, if I were to take a camera into the movie theatre with me, and then tape the movie, and give it away for free outside the movie theatre, then what theatre manager in his right mind would let me stay there without calling the cops on me?

And yes, I read a whole business law book. So I know what I'm talking about. I'm not one of those yuppies whose only expertise is Law & Order or Ally McBeal or Buffy. Nossir, I read a book, that means you can't argue. And if you do, well... 'LALALALALALALALA' I can't hear you.

ANDREW
Wow, a whole book? Well, I can't fight that, since the last law text I read was in OAC (or "Grade 13", the mythical year that was unceremoniously gutted by the Ontario government a few years back.) It does help to clarify though, and it makes me wonder why Square only now decided to sic its lawyers on CR, since the material has been around for some time.

It also gives me an idea... If I can somehow force people to make fanfiction profitable, perhaps I can have it wiped off the face of the earth... But that would probably require effort and possibly some sort of superpowers, whereas ignoring it is as simple as breathing.

LOCKEZ
If you were to create a pay-for-access website for fan works and give writers a percentage of profits according to their page views, and then publicize it somehow, you could probably get yourself shut down and discourage a lot of fanfic writers. Maybe even make some money in the meantime. In fact, I'll help you do it. This is starting to sound like a really incredibly goodidea. Of course, so did my idea of turning a traffic cone into an umbrella.


Not Particularly Fit For Print


Do you know of any rpg games that you are a ships captain and are able to add to your ship or buy a new ship? I would appreciate it if you could help.

Dustin

ANDREW
Well, there was one, but Earth & Beyond vanished a year or two ago, so you're barking up the wrong tree.

LOCKEZ
Kingdom Hearts?


YOU 'DREW
QUICKIE I
Hey Castmasta.
I recognize that I've been somewhat negligent in my contributions to the Q&A effort since college started up...which really doesn't make much sense, given that it takes only a few seconds to shoot off an email...like say this one. Because, see, I didn't even know there was an FFXI expo in New York. Shows you how interested I am in such events!

-Jackson Ferrell
P.S. What's your favorite elemental weakness?

Andrew:
My favorite elemental weakness would have to be fire, because fire usually costs less MP.

LockeZ:
I like cure-weak enemies, because that is highly abusable. Fire-weakness is way overused.

Andrew:
YOU'RE overused!

QUICKIE II
Out of curiosity...

"Sage Guido", a turtle, from Final Fantasy 5: how many people sent in that name for the turtle contest?
"Morla the Ancient One" from "The Never Ending Story": how many people sent in that name?

Andrew:
Five and three, respectively.

LockeZ:
Guido was listed in my original letter. You lose.

QUICKIE III
It's not uncommon for clocks
with Roman numerals on their faces to use IIII instead of IV, because it provides a nice visual balance with the VIII on the other side. Not seeing a 24-hour clock or caring to visualize it, I don't know if that accounts for the odd numerals in ye olde Florence.

Andrew:
Thanks for sharing, Bart.



DA LAST GRUMBLE

So anyway, I will contact the winners tomorrow or Monday about prize arrangements, and leave the rest of you with Google for the time being. For next week, let's talk about the trend I'm noticing in a lot of recent games whereby battle systems are Tales-based, either by virtue of being a clone or else by being a Tales game. Do you like this system? Think this is the wave of the future? Yearn for the days when everyone copied Dragon Warrior? Yearn for the days when everyone copied FFVII? If imitation is flattery, then the RPG world is the biggest bunch of bootlickers this side of Waylan Smithers.
LockeZ As I was preparing for this column, some random stooge IMed me and let me know he had a stuffy nose. I didn't even know the guy, never seen him before, but he IMs me at one in the morning to inform me that he's suffering from nasal congestion. I told him to stand on his head or hang upside-down for about five minutes, because it immediately came to mind as something that would not work and would almost certainly be uncomfortable. Five minutes later he comes back and tells me it worked. Ah, the power of psychosomatic tendencies. Turtles and Toodle-loos, LockeZ.

castomel@rpgamer.com
Andrew Long wishes you a week of creamsicles and maybe pie.

GOOG'LL PROVIDE THE ANSWERS, YOU PROVIDE THE

QUESTIONS


Mmm... pie

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