Ask Cheshire Catalyst  

   The Value of a Miracle  
Chris Martin- March 10th '01- 12:00 Eastern Standard Time

I'm in the middle of writing a mammoth of a paper on Charles Dickens. Fun for all ages. If I shine a little less brightly this weekend, blame it on finals week.

No time for videogames today, sadly. A day without them is a day without sunshine. Work to do! Priority(Work) supercedes Priority(Advance Character in Star Ocean 2) any day. It even surpasses Priority(Watch an episode of Trigun that I've seen seven times). Imagine that.

In addition to the regular stuff, we have two responses to the FF8 debate. Take notes kids. When disagreeing with someone's opinion in the form of a letter, try to make decent arguments like these guys. People will take you more seriously if you abstain from referring to the original writer as any naughty words.

No more complaining. Column now.

You have less homework than me, don't you?

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FF8 fans strike back! Part 1
FF9 spoiler contained herein.


I'll concede some of the points against FF8. The whole orphanage bit was a bit tacky, and many of the other important scenes lacked any kind of foreshadowing, making them suspect to "deus ex machinas" style handiwork. However, I thought the plot was otherwise excellent and the fact that The Man from Ganymede used his personal opinion of the characters as an "example" is completely unfair. Like someone stated earlier, FF8's climax was when Squall saved Rinoa; defeating Ultimecia was just tying up loose ends. And while Ultimecia was brought up as a last boss pretty late in the game, so was the final boss for FF9.

As for your comments on exploration, I feel I need to mention that the FF series has never had any exploration outside of plot. And rightly so I should think; I know I wouldn't like Cloud to take a vacation while Meteor is on its way to destroy mankind. Don't say FF9 had any more exploration than any other FF, because the whole Chocographs thing is a mini-game. One of the many in that game that I felt was too pointless to finish.


-Red Raven, agreeing to disagree

Cheshire Catalyst:
Exploration can be fun. For me, the Chocobo Hot & Cold game was 50% somewhat amusing, 50% mind-numbingly repetitive. I still have nightmares about pecking what felt like every square millimeter and seeing my Chocobo mockingly reply. "Kweh?!" On the other hand, exploring the world of FF9 was significantly more enjoyable (though not as much as Skies of Arcadia).

FF8 fans Strike Back! Part B
I just wanna make a rebuttal to the Man from Ganymede's argument yesterday (I know this isn't editorials but what the hell).

About Ultimecia...sure she came out of nowhere, but this is not the first Final Fantasy that has thrown at us a boss from nowhere. You spend the entire game chasing sorceresses, why not have a sorceress for the last boss? Edea is reformed and Adel is defeated. Also, I believe that the orphanage scene shows the relationships between many of the characters originating, Quistis' care over Squall, the rivalry between Squall and Seifer, and Seifer and Zell, and Squall's negative attitude. It also gives them a motive to help Edea and Ellone, or else they probably would have killed Edea at Galbadia Garden.

The cast is uninteresting, because they have so few lines, but you have to remember that the main characters are Squall, Rinoa, Seifer, Edea, Ellone and Laguna, not the others. They're just there to fill up the party. It's the same with FF9. We never learn much about Amarant, Quina or Steiner either.

FF8 and 9 have about the same length of FMVs, but why doesn't anybody complain about 9? Also, I have to say that GF were never a problem for me because I went through the entire game without summoning a GF or even equipping the GF command.

LightSoul-"The jerk from the swamp."

Cheshire Catalyst:
It's not so much the way that the children all acted back when they were in the orphanage (which was fairly well thought out), rather it was the "Oh! Amazingly, we all come from the same orphanage!" Deus Ex Machina that seemed poorly executed. We've seen this before. Mediocre Dungeons and Dragons plots will have the characters find out about "A mysterious legend that says a knight, a thief, a cleric, and a wizard shall save the town". Holy baloney! It's us!

One of the shortcomings of the PSX final fantasies has been the underdeveloped minor characters. Vincent Valentine was one cool hombre, sadly we didn't learn THAT much about him.

A letter from Queen Editorials.
Well, as one collegue to another, I HAVE to ask you this one question.

How many people took up torches, ran to your lab and shouted "Death to the Heretic Cat!" concerning Final Fantasy VII?

And by the way, are you trying to intrude on my section again?

Oh, and also, you do know I'll be sending some poor... er, lucky winner to you in about three weeks time, where you can tor... ahem, show him or her how much hel- fun Q&A really is. [For those who are curious, yes, the update is now up and you can see who didn't make it.]

Just a thought.

Mistress Nightshadow

Cheshire Catalyst:

The only letters regarding FF8 were printed above.

I don't get THAT many editorial like submissions. I get a lot of stuff about looking at naughty parts on game sprites though.

Yay! A guest host for me to experiment on. Just in time too. Professor Cranium has been cruisin' for a bruisin' lately.

A woman's heart is as fickle as the skies of Ganymede.
Square Execs regarding FFT: "This isn't the way."
Hey Omni-Chesh

i just wanna know how many people have FFT. Out of all my friends i know only one other person that hass FFT besides myself. Did they all get thrown into some void, it's the same thing with Xenogears. Is there some kind of evil scheme to get rid of all the classic games when we all want to play them.

And secondly. HUZZAH!!! Hoshigami is coming to North America. I love tactical RPG's. And do you know any way i could find an english version of Ogre battle tatics for the snes. some information would be greatly appreciated.

" i said to the guy....... thats not a duck that's my wife. HA HA HA!"

Cheshire Catalyst:

I printed this in regards to a number of your questions. A lot of people ask, before this whole Hoshigami thing, "Why doesn't Square make Final Fantasy Tactics 2?"
Not nearly as many people actually bought this game as we might lead you to believe. FFT didn't really sell THAT well. At least, not well enough to warrant a direct sequel. It's a cult classic, like "Rocky Horror Picture Show", or "Neon Genesis Evangelion". Not a big hit when it comes to the general public, but very popular amongst their fans.

Celebrate our anniversary with Imperial Mog.
Hey (monks sing) CHRIS MAR-TIN

I definately have to respond for the third anniversary of the site. I've been visiting the first day it was up. Also it seems I'm possibly one of the last regulars on Q&A since everyone seems to of vanished. Is there a plot since that means I'm next on the list. Damn, I really wish I knew how to make pictures or some odd hacks of one. All I can do is use my powers of pardoning and grant the entire staff in celebration one genuine pardon without my usual quid pro quo. That many pardons go for at least ten million dollars. An interesting thought is picture what all of us were doing three years ago. Me, I was a happier person, 16 at the time a junior at De Smet High School in St. Louis, Missouri. I actually had a girlfriend at the time which is scary, if you need a description picture the exact personality and physical characteristics of Lina Inverse of Slayers. Now I have nobody to talk to and haven't for a very long time. I ended up droping out of high school due to my Cloudesque mental breakdowns. I don't do anything and I'm my own worst enemy. I'm now fate's favorite punching bag since whenever there's a light at the end of the tunnel, something always gets me back to where I've been. I wonder what you were doing then? Also what's weird is that the annoying old/new school debate has gone nowhere in three years. What has the state of the RPG been in these last three years? What about the people like us and share our common lifestyle throghout North America, how have we fared and are we any closer to being part of the mainstream culture where we are accepted? Do we really want it since it might seem we've lost something along the way and it feels we've bastardized our sub-set of culture for going mainstream? What are your thoughts on all of these questions. I deserve to be responded to as being one of the few Q&A regulars left.

Imperial Mog

Cheshire Catalyst:

Three years ago I was a junior in high school. My junior year was probably my best year in high school. (Though the Senior Trip to Disneyland was fun, I'll admit.)

High school was nice because everything was planned out for you, pretty much. Take these classes, the school will work out your schedule, with plenty of time for extra curricular activities. (Yeah, I was in the school plays. Can you tell?) Now, college is a lot harder, you have to do things for yourself, and you have a lot less time for extra curricular stuff.

I fist visited this site last year. I was looking up info on FF8. Been a fan of Q&A ever since. (Though, personally, I hate the new weekend guy. What a buttmunch. Bring back Brad!) Also, doing those pictures from way back when wasn't hard. I just used Microsoft's Paint.. thing. Cut, paste, add sacrcasm, mix in butt jokes, instant funny.

The RPG scene? I don't think it's that nescessary to assimilate with "mainstream" culture. It's our little niche of the gaming world, and we're happy with it. The problem arises when the game is so non-mainstream that very few people buy it.

I'd like to know when I can reserve a gamecube system. If i already can, where? Check out
I donm't think it's available to preorder right now, but they should be able to begin taking orders soon.
How did you know I was hungry?
You said so yourself in Session #17: "Mushroom Samba" Remember? The ship crashed on Europa, and everyone was really hungry? And how Spike wanted to eat Ein, the dog? You wound up finding some mushrooms, but they turned out to be narcotic. You tested them out on Spike, Jet, and Faye. They all started hallucinating and stuff. It was SO funny. How could you forget?
Oh chemically-enhanced kitty cat,

In yesterday's column, you said that you can play through all of FFIX without Quina. That is quite wrong, cuz you need it to find the path through Gargan Roo to escape the Mist Continent, and later to fight Lich at the Earth Shrine.

RPGamer's 3rd birthday? I swear I've read this site longer than that, unless you just mean RPGamer, not I've read this site since 6th grade, I believe, and I'm in 10th right now. Peace, love, Krelian ^_^

~Casey Edwards~

My bad about Quina. Quina is an essential character to the game. S/he should be placed retroactivly in every squaresoft game ever made. Imagine the fun! Quina meets Frog from Chrono Trigger.
And, yes, it's RPGamer's 3rd birthday. We finally got him potty trained, and we're all looking into daycare.
I went to my computer......and decided to write a quickie!

I had a good feeling!

It was a tough job but.....I managed to finish it!

I checked RPGamer.....and it was printed!

This job was a huge success!!

This is the way!

- Esquire J -

I need to watch "Perfect Blue" again. There's something about a pop star going insane that's (Yes, I know this is irrevalent. Sue me.)
Is Sega going to stop making VMU's and the 4x mem card?

Oh, and happy b-day RPGamer.



Not anytime soon, methinks.

The Last Laugh:

Here's a birthday pic from Sir Bob Dole the Fourth!

Today's column was a little too short in my opinion. Blech. Got a problem? Blame yourself or God.
Actually, blame Herbert Christopher, my my Dickens prof. It's HIS fault you have less funny.

Chesh"I have a blue house with a blue window..."

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