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Chris Martin - June 8th '02- 2:00 Eastern Standard Time

Tonight was the final night for Northwestern's animé club for the year. Much fun was had watching classic Escaflowne, Bebop, and the episode of Utena where Nanami gets run over by elephants. I celebrated the completion of my Spanish requirement by watching the first three episodes of Evangelion in classic español.
Somehow, in Spanish, Shinji Ikari sounds like an even BIGGER wuss than his English/Japanese counterparts. "Padre! Padre! No debo escapar! No debo escapar!"

Let's just get on with the column!

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Star Ocean 2 had a very high wuss factor. Claude + Ashton == Nancy Boys.

Friday, June 07 [4:27 PM MST] Dearest Cheshy-kins:

Firstly, my sympathy to your keyboard. I too have had Ramen noodle soup (piping hot, at that) spilled all over me, and it is not a pleasant experience.

Secondly, Channel One? I shudder at the name. **Shudder** The damn thing takes ten minutes out of my morning break. They can keep their hip, young-adult oriented, current issues savvy.

Anyway, Star Ocean 2 question. I'm in Fienal, nearing the end of the game. After several tries, I just beat two more Wise Men, Decus and Vesper (who can shove his "Spicule" right up his ass).

Now, I've been playing Rena's game, and went the Ashton/Precis route. I also haven't really used the whole Item Creation dealy to its full potential. Should I play through again on Claude's game, get the other characters, and really max out my Skills? Is Claude's scenario that much different, the other members that cool, and the Skills really worth it?

Also, one more question. Where the -Hela- can I get Valkyrie Profile? I can't find it anywhere! (Except, but I want to see if I can get it for lower than $40. Hey, saving a few bucks is worth a shot. Or maybe I should just sacrifice something else. ...Nah.)

Please enlighten me.

>>Geirahod Svanmeyja

Cheshire Catalyst:
Item Creation is the only way to get the really sweet stuff in Star Ocean 2. Unfortunatly, it's a real pain in the ass to do. Playing the game over as Claude has some advantages (new perspective, different characters, some new private actions), but only if you really enjoy this game. Playing through a second time can get pretty tedious. It's not worth abandoning your current game for, though.'
Skills are pretty useful. If you play through again, remember not to spend any points on skills until you get the two skills that reduce required SP (Perseverance) and XP (Effort). It's worth it, especially if you take care of them early.
Valkyrie Profile can be picked up on ebay for less than twenty dollars. (Unopened too.) I've had good experiences with ebay in the past, and I'd have to reccomend them for all of your cheap stuff needs. (/ corporate whoring)

What I will name my six children: Kain, Kane, Cain, Caine, Cayn, and Khaine.

Hey all powerful cat of the catalyst.

I've been pondering now since Square has announced plans for the sequels of FF10 if they'll ever go back and do sequels for Final Fantasys long past? I remember seeing something at E3 a long time ago about an FF6 sequel starring Shadow. I know I would like to see a sequel of the second ever Final Fantasy Bad Ass, or better yet the first one, Kain Highwind, of course, I'm an incurable Kain fan boy. So most my comments about Kain can be tossed out the window and dismissed with a wave of the hand.

Now on to less serious matters...

Why is it that hot college gamer girls never seem to realize just how much in demand they are, I know our local gaming girl has a cultish following of about 37 geeky male gamers, me included. Why am I foolish enough to depend on you and googleshng for answers from everything to RPGs, life, love, and oddity? Who is really the main character of FF4? This is purely a philosophical question as I say Kain, some say Rydia, some say Rosa, even some Golbez, thus I consider it worth time in my random ponderings. Final question, why is it that about 20% of the RPGers on the net seem to hail from Oregon?

Oregonian Kain Fan

Cheshire Catalyst:
While a re-release is in the works, no sequels to older games are planned as of now. I'm shocked enough that Square actually wants to do a sequel featuring Yuna and Rikku. I don't see them wanting to go that far back just to appease us old guys and gals. We'd all like to see Kain get his own game, but that's just not gonna happen.
Dude, just chalk it up to another case of "women don't know how good they have it." Gaming girls are sexy. Sounds like your best shot is to buy some brass knuckles, and prepare to kick thirty six asses. Women dig it when you beat the snot out of people for them.
Cecil, being the central character within the story, seems deserving of the main character title. Kain and Rosa were interesting, but that was largely due to their relationships with said Dark Knight/Paladin. Rydia, also while a cool character, vanished from the story for a bit too long for me to think of her as "the main character." Golbez became relativly interesting once we learned that he was Cecil's brother. His story of attempted redemption at the end of the game, while a cool parallel to Cecil's own journey, doesn't place him above the rest of the characters. In fact, most of what makes these characters interesting is their relationship with Cecil. (best friend, clingy girl friend, posessed older brother, girl he orphaned..) Cecil was one big catalyst (ha HA!) marching all over the world. He made friends and enemies. While many of these characters had interesting stories, they were the result of encountering Cecil.
And why do you ask us for advice? Well, who else WOULD you ask? We know everything here.

MMmmmm. Beer and pretzels.

TO the one and only (unless you have a clone) Chesh:

Just to start real quick.. I'M getting A CABLE MODEM! NO longer will I be bound to my pitiful dail up ISP. HAHAHAAA!!

Moving on.. The Multi-parter:

1. Beer and pretzels gaming is sort of a bore to me when it comes to good games...but it's the basis for all the MMORPGs. All munchkinism...munchkin bad! I'm more moved and provoked into Story driven RPGs. What do you think? I like both. But the B&P stuff is too proliferated, Don't you think?

2. was interesting....I covered E3 in an article of mine. But really, was there any Xenosaga booths there? And I'm still looking for my evil twin.

3. Is it me, or does the Arc collection seem to have the awareness that it IS a game?

Thank you for your time,

Cheshire Catalyst:
Cable modems are the greatest thing since noodles.

1. Story driven games can be nice for the career gamer. But since most people don't spend as much time playing video games as required by most RPGs, they want a little more bang for their buck. Hence, fewer plot twists involving your most-hated enemny becoming your brother and your girlfriend becoming a man, and more blowing the crap out of zombies/ninjas/aliens/anything that even moves.

2. Again, school prevernts any jaunts out to E3. All infornmation about Xenosaga can be found in our Games section. (Remember, we know everything)

3. A game with a self-concious about its own self-concious? It's the Hamlet of video games!

Esphér is the Canadian Alan Greenspan.

Hey Chesh (can I call you Chesh?),

I'm just writing in response to a letter written by Dave in Thursday's column. He was referring to the price of Canadian games being twice that of American games. As far as I can tell, it's usually cheaper to buy them here (in Canada) than import (well, order) them from the U.S., due to the exchange rate, taxes, and duty.

He uses Dragon Warrior VII as an example, with the U.S. price being USD$49, and the Canadian price being CAN$89. Let me do a little math.

U.S. Price : USD$49 = CAN$75.09 (Assuming USD$1 = CAN$1.5325 exchange rate found at the Bank of Canada website). If we add tax, this comes to : CAN$86.35 We add the $5 shipping fee that all imported goods are subject too : CAN$91.35 (See for details)

The Canadian price with tax is : CAN$102.35

So far, there's only an eleven dollar difference. However, I haven't included any shipping fees that would be incurred via purchasing something from the U.S. (i.e. the supplier's added shipping fees), nor have I included the duty that is added to such a purchase (since it is over CAN$20, there's duty; however, I couldn't find the exact amount on the website).

However, I will give an example of my own, which was the Taebo workout set (you remember Billy Blanks, don't you?). A friend of mine ordered this from the U.S. when it came out, and was about US$59. It came to almost CAN$140 when it arrived here.

Anyway, hope this clears things up. "540 damage per attack, with 284 attacks per round, gives us a staggering 126900 damage per round." "In D&D 3rd Edition?" "Yep. I have too much free time."

Cheshire Catalyst:
I don't know about money. All of my goods and services are purchased by bartering.


Your quickies aren't that quick... some are longer than actual questions...


I'm reinventing the quickie genre. Do not question the most high motives of the host! (/hubris)

HAHA. Humorous your little anecdote was. I inquire-what is a lonely man supposed to do if he likes a girl a lot, but she kinda infringes upon some of his morals?

-Confused person who just got out of school-booyah.

How much moral infringement are we talking here? If it's not too bad, I'd say give it a shot. If she starts murdering nuns or something, you can always dump her and then go hide from her in an isolated mountain cabin.

Chesh, my man! Channel One WAS good until the exodus of Lisa Ling to The View (Why?!) and the blonde lady who went to VH1 or MTV, I forget. I just liked it when the guys went away on assignment and the girls were joined by the rookie up-and-comer girls. Lots of obviously male-created conversations and fantasies due to that show!

Also, .hack has to include some sort of "nagging parent" feature. Spend time in the game, but beware long expeditions, especially if your character has a job!

Hold down the fort while Google fights the zombie army, ok?


Channel One was a flashy morning deversion to watch while I sat in Mr. Fabbri's 7th grade homeroom and counted the tiles on the ceiling. Lisa Ling was the show's hottie. All were in agreement that, should she ever lose her eyesight and sanity, we'd "do her." Ah, the halcyon days of junior high.

.hack needs status effects like, "no social interaction with human beings", "foul odor", "large gut from too many 7-11 combos" and, the worst of all, "pathetic "female" PC stalker." Don't make my paladin issue a restraining order, bucko!

The Last Laugh:

That's all, folks. Drop us a line for tomorrow.

Chris "You think a minor thing like the end of the world was gonna do me in?" Martin

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