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Chimerasame - September 30 '00- 05:40 Eastern Daylight Time

Due to my rather late return to this computer after an Anime Club showing, Gin was no longer online when I arrived, and no one seems to know whether he'll be able to do Q&A tomorrow or not. So e-mail questions to me, and if it turns out Gin will be doing it, I'll forward them... otherwise you shall unfortunately have to endure a fourth round of me. I'm starting to wonder if I'm cursed. Maybe random events will conspire in such a way that I'll never be able to stop doing Q&A and get back to a (somewhat) normal sleep schedule. I'd have to come up with some running gags, or weird idiosyncracies, or something.

I probably have enough weird idiosyncracies as it is, though. For example, the ridiculously large number of times I say "Ni!" For the moment, I'm spelling it "Ni." It seems that, though the movie's cover says "Nee," the script itself disagrees. Covers, like most advertising and propaganda, are known to be misleading at times. Speaking of misleading advertising, I wonder if commercials for Voyager's seventh season opener have started...

Note from Gin: Actually, I had thought it was known that I would be back today. I guess not... anyway, send your crap to me, and I'll see you tonight. :)

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Don't this just beat all!

To get through the desert in Breath of Fire 3, remeber these key points:

1) Only walk at night, and camp during the day. This recovers your HP and MP and conserves water.

2) When you get a message telling you to drink water, take about 15 steps, then drink ONCE.

3) When coming out of a battle area, always check which way you are facing before starting to walk again.

Also, the last dragon gene can be used and controled by combining it with the Radience and Trance genes. However, I found it was not worth the MP cost.

Erich Mende
Wizard's First Rule: People are stupid; given proper motivation, almost anyone will believe almost anything. Because people are stupid, they will believe a lie because they want to believe it's true, or because they are afraid it might be true. People's heads are full of knowledge, facts, and beliefs, and most of it is false, yet they think it all true. People are stupid; they can only rarely tell the difference between a lie and the truth, and yet they are confident they can, and so are all the easier to fool.

As far as I know, this is good advice. Another person, Ryonin Zero, suggests to "wait until the fourth red flash" before drinking. I'm not sure if that might be related to taking 15 steps or not, but it's concievable the two could coincide.

As this letter says, the Infinity, Radiance, and Trance genes can combine to form the final dragon form, which I heard from a number of people.

And as long as we're quoting Goodkind... Verification of the truth of the words of the Book of Counted Shadows, if spoken by another, rather than read by the one who commands the boxes, can only be insured by the use of a Confessor...

System Analysis

It's been AGES since I've written to RPGamer's letters section...go figure. Anyway, I wanted to rant about the WonderSwan FF games Square is proudly showing off. Yeah, it's great that they're finally remaking FF games the right way (not just cheaply tacking on FMV like with FF Anthology). However, I think that their fascination with WonderSwan color is like a joke that's just not funny. WonderSwan color is supposedly able to display 241 simultaneous colors while GBA can display 65,536. Doesn't take a math whiz to figure out which is better.

Yeah, it's swell that FF1, 2, and 3 will be upgraded to FF4-ish capacity, but wouldn't it have been even more impressive to make them all above and beyond the 2D graphics found in FF6? Why wouldn't Square want to take advantage of GBA's power? Does Sony have Square on a tight leash and supposedly draws them away from the big handheld competition at Nintendo. I DON'T KNOW!!! All I know is that if Square doesn't develop for GBA, many other companies will...and those companies will be the ones on top in the handheld industry...not Square. But how long can they remake titles (FF1, 2, 3, Seiken 2) or make cheap offshoots (Working Chocobo) for a handheld only slightly more powerful than Neo Geo Pocket Color?


Your name is Steeeve....
Ahem. Never mind that. As far as the points you bring up, they're valid, I think. However, they may not be particularly important. Look at the Playstation. Personally, I bought a PSX in order to play Final Fantasy VII, and I know I'm not alone in that. It's quite possible that the very fact that Square is making these games for the WonderSwan will help the system out quite a bit. Why they're not using the GBA, I don't know. Perhaps there's a limit to how much resources they want to devote to the remakes.. and coding something to take full advantage of the GBA would be more labor-intensive and not really worth it, compared with coding something to take full advantage of the WSC. That's just a theory, of course. As far as 'how long can they remake titles,' etc., I think Square can easily survive on the large amount of completely new games they make every year, and as long as they don't actually lose money on remakes, there's not much reason not to do them.

Another Viewpoint


Can you help me?

I can only buy one of theses games and i want your advises about them. Parisite eve 2 and Valkyrie Profile. Which one i should get if i want to play a real RPG. I hope you'll answer it.


From what I hear...
From everything I've heard about both games, I agree. Though, the first PE does look rather intriguing, and I intend to play it at some point, I haven't heard much good about the second. VP, on the other hand, has an innovative plot premise, innovative battle structure.. and GOOD-innovative, too, unlike a certain unnamed magic system that wasn't very entertaining, partially because it made sitting there in a battle drawing and drawing spells without actually fighting beneficial. But that's another story.

How will we give them Localization ratings?

Finally! An RPGamer staffer who plays PC RPG's! Planescape: Torment has a plot deeper than that of Xenogears, Chrono Cross, or any Final Fantasy game. Hopefully it'll get the credit it deserves, because it's probably in the top 3 RPG's of all time, console or otherwise. Anyways, my question is: do you foresee a bigger future for non-Japanese RPG's, considering the quality of Planescape, Baldur's Gate 2, Diablo 2, etc?

Y'bhan Dari

I must admit I haven't played THAT many PC RPGs. There's Torment, and there are the Might And Magic games 3-6. Playing 4 and 5 together was really amazing somehow... if you install World of Xeen from the anthology, the world of those two merge and you can carry your party between the two games... and in spite of the fact that I was used to better graphics, sound, and story, it was one (two?) of the most entertaining games I've played.

As far as your question, my answer is Yes. Developers are springing up all over. Tons of people enjoy massive multiplayer RPGs not made by Japanese companies (or less-massive ones such as Diablo II, which you mentioned.) For a while at least, the major forces among console RPGs will remain located in Japan (Square, Enix, etc.), but as time passes, newer companies and developing teams (most of which will be based elsewhere) will surely gain popularity. I, for one, hope to make a wonderful game, though at my current rate of progress it won't be out for another fifty years. :)

Inductive and deductive reasoning

I've noticed a bit of a pattern in Square's Final Fantasy games. FF1-3 were on NES, FF4-6 were on SNES, FF7-9 are on PSX, and FF10 and 11 will be on PS2. Given this data, does it make sense to assume that FF12 will also be on PS2, and FF13-15 will be on another platform, perhaps by a manufacturer other than Sony? Could this mean that Square will jump to Sega? or perhaps even Microsoft?

Chip Marshall <> Finger for PGP GCM/CS d+(-) s+:++ a18>? C++ UB++++$ P+++$ L- E--- W++ N+@ o K- w O M+ V-- PS PE Y? PGP++ t+@ 5 X R>+ tv+() b++>+++ DI++++ D(-) G++ e>++ h!>++ r-- y-

I've noticed that pattern before too, but it's not much to go by yet. Back before the PSX, I had a theory that Square wouldn't translate prime FF games. We got 1, then we didn't get 2 and 3. 4's not prime, so it came over, but 5 was, so it stayed. And we got 6. However, 7 broke the rule by being translated in spite of being prime, then they went back and translated 5, and now they might translate 2 and 3 as well. There goes that theory.

I don't know if Square's going to jump to anything, though I wouldn't be surprised at all if they start doing multi-platform releases. I don't know how different the machine language is for the various systems, so I'm not sure how easy it is to release a game, say, for both the PS2 and the X-Box. But it couldn't be too difficult, and would almost surely bring in a substantial number of sales.

You've got balls, to have so few balls
Hey Chimmy,
For the game of life I would play with one white ball. No less, no more. Why? If you won, imagine the increadable rush you would get that you had just barely escaped death. If you lost: you would die instantly and wouldn't have to live with the grief of not winning 10 mill.
But wait, there's more.
Because there's an exact 50/50 chance of you dieing, an 2 universes would be created, one with death, one without. Then, if you found a portal by chance, you could travell between the to worlds and have funky Crono Cross style adventures. The best part is, this would happen if you won or lost, so you'ld be garenteed a win in one universe!


I got a number of letters on this subject, and I'm sorry I can't print more of them. Since this is theoretically an RPG column, I figured it'd be best to limit this discussion to just one letter. I will offer some commentary about what some other people said, however.

To start with, the results on the number of balls various readers say they'll play with. One person would need 100,000 white balls. Someone says 10 would be necessary. Someone says only about four, considering him or herself lucky. Another person says they'd play with 1.5 white balls. (This could be accomplished in effect with 3 white and 2 black, incidentally.) Three people including the above letter's author say that one ball is appropriate; one of the others uses the same reasoning as used here--that if you picked the black ball, you wouldn't care that you lost--and the other says that economic principles estimate a human life at about $10 million anyway, so one white ball would be equal to one black one. One person requires zero white balls, but that's just because they were in a bad mood. Hopefully that mood improved, I'd hate to lose a reader over a nonexistant game.

One person wrote in and said that they'd never play, no matter how good the odds. My question to that is: What's the chance you're going to die today anyway? It might be very very small, but it exists. Is there the slightest possibility that someone has a grudge against you, went crazy, and laced your mouse with some sort of deadly poison? Sure, that's highly improbable, but not impossible to imagine. I believe this was one of the points of the lecture. We risk ourselves on a constant bases, even if the risk is very small. This game just makes that risk a bit more obvious. When you get in a car, you risk your life in exchange for the convienience of not having to walk. If you ever eat raw food, there's a slight risk that some sort of bacteria is living in it, but you accept the miniscule chance because you don't want to eat everything cooked. To quote the professor's response to a student, "I will not play this game, comma, bull****." (I like this professor. ;>) No offense if that was your answer.. the idea wasn't necessarily to denounce you, just to make you think.

Incidentally, I'm pretty sure I'd play with 99 white balls, and I might play with fewer, though I'm not sure. I might come into $10 million some other way, you never know. ;>

Toxic chemicals are only silly when you try to convince your lab partner to "collect qualitative data" on them. That's some *good* purified caffeine.. o.0 Take two parts arsenic, three parts coral snake venom, and a pinch of cyanide, and call me in the morning.
Uh, whats the fastest you've ever gotten through FF4? I beleive i'v gotten through in just over nine hours, but that was really hard to do without cheating, and indeed involved a little glitch involving the warp spell. Without cheating, I don't know. With cheating, just under seven hours, I think. The Gunslinger game genie code is useful, ne? And a bit of that was idle time as I played talisman in another room.
Hey Chimerasame,
Guess what. I'm in a marching band, too! Only I have to march cuz I play the sax. Did you hafta wear the big feathers in your hat? I have a competition today, so wish me luck!
I'm not in the marching band now, it'd eat up far too much of my time. I was in it in high school. But, good luck!
Kanji isn't scary, it's just misunderstood.
So, Chimmy, what kind of anime have you seen? What's your favorite?
-Magus Darkstar-
It's scary when you don't know any and then you look at a chart showing a few dozen with 14 strokes or so.
I've actually seen relatively little. All of Escaflowne, 8 or 9 Slayers, the second video of the FF Anime, a couple Ranma eps, eight Kimagure Orange Road, two I'll Make a Habit Of It, two DNA”, five Detective Conan, and four each of Legend of Galactic Heroes, El-Hazard OAV #1, His and Hers Circumstances, Love Hina, Utena, Tri-Gun, and Cowboy Bebop. It's hard to say at this point what my favorite is, but I think it's either Escaflowne, or Tri-gun.
HAHE ROBBLE ROBBLE 8D where are the denadorites

(I feel so dirty...)
I think there should be some pie in the white and black balls, and if you pull the pie it means you get to eat it. Or you could demand a frosty.
Thanks, Chimmy, for correcting my grammar before printing my letter so that I didn't look like an idiot in front of all the RPGamer patrons >:P

You're welcome. Besides, everybody looks like an idiot at some point. For instance, me, two quickies up.
I accept your challenge as a martial artist. And should you win, you are entitled to these. (holds up one of Paws' bras)

"Happo-Fire Burst!"
I made no such challenge, unless Martial Arts is slang for Tetrinet. And cats don't wear bras.

Every since watching M:I2, I pronounce your name Ki(as in kite)-mare-ra sah-may. Just to let you know.

M:I2 pronounces "Chimera" correctly. However, my name isn't just that word, it's a derivative of that and something else. There are plenty of examples of pronunciation changing. Even the word "pronunciation" is an example. The original word was "pronounce," but it doesn't turn into "pronounciation."

The Last Laugh:

Well, I suppose I mentioned before the strange situation regarding tomorrow. Yep, yep, it is strange, it is. Since it won't necessarily be me, I'll have to avoid bringing up some weird new philosophical topic for you to respond to. This column has seen a dearth of weird funny links/images/text files, however, so I'll throw in a gratuitous plug for The Sev Wide Seb, the biggest part of which is weekly comic strips parodying Star Trek and other sci-fi productions. Weird how, even though I love Star Trek, stuff making fun of it is hilarious. :)

In case I don't see you again, at least for a while, <Dr. Nick>Bye, everybody!</Dr. Nick>


chime "who congratulated the Q&A on the whiteboard of my dorm room?"

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