Moving the idea along
Hey Google and Tomm,
this question is mainly for Tomm. I use the OHR engine
(www.hamsterrepublic.com) to make my games, and they're about FF4 quality. My
question is, once I finish a game, is doomed to remain forever on the
computer, or is there a way to transfer the code and turn it into a gameboy
game? How long does making a RPG take, with how many people working on it?
I've been dreaming of making my own gameboy RPG, but I know I don't have the
programing skills. Also, I have Phantasy Star 2, good condition, original
And...in case someone out bids me...I'll throw in Phantasy Star 3 too.
Phantasy Star 2 AND 3? With working batteries?!
Looks like we have a winner.
As for your question, I'm not familiar with the OHR engine. However, once
you get a game completed, unless you know an Assembly programmer, it's doomed
to stay on the PC as freeware. Don't despair, though! I'm sure if you
aspire to be a game designer, you could use these projects as resume's if you
apply at a big company. They want to know you have the conviction to stay
with a product through completion, and that you're creative. I'm sure
previous projects, even unpublished ones, count.
How many people on a team? That really depends on who you have and how much
they're doing. There's 9 members in Team XKalibur, many of whom are doing
graphics. Things like music, character design, etc. only require one person
each (depending on how big the project is).
Thanks for the good questions...and the PS games ;)
Speaking of getting in to game design,
remember that page I started making way back when to help aspiring game makers get together
and get things out there? A few other people with a lot more time than I do dig the idea,
so it will actually be going up some time in the future.
Now, for those who haven't been paying attention to this new little gimmick, once Tomm
here recieves those games, CN will be allowed to guest a few times, or until someone donates
an obscure game CN wants, thus gaining the guest host seat, and so on, until someone
asks for a game nobody can provide, in which case the last person gets 3 guest
First of all, I wish you the best of success with Mythri and future
projects, and I'm very excited that a developer will be answering questions.
With that said, I hope you can eliminate all of my forthcoming concerns.
I've been following the progress of Mythri since it was first announced
the web, and I must say, I'm on the side of the publishers in that I'm
skeptical that the game would be a big seller (or even a sell-through).
After all, given the traditional style of the game, publishers would have a
hard time marketing it to anyone besides long-time fans of the genre.
What's worse, however, is that those same hard-core fans would probably be
the most difficult to sell Mythri to, considering both the reputations of
American developed RPGs and hand-held RPGs in general. American RPGs, of
course, have historically been shitty. And hand-held games are usually
half-assed cash-ins of established console franchises or popular licenses.
Already attached to two prejudices, I can't think of any publisher who
wouldn't be frightened by Mythri's uphill battle.
Another disheartening aspect is that the game doesn't seem very original.
Granted, I haven't played the demo, nor have I read the script (but I sure
as hell would like to), but based on RPGamer's coverage of the game, nothing
strikes me as innovative. An unidentified Team XKalibur member said, "Some
of today's publishers believe that in order to be successful, a game needs
to be based on a popular franchise, a cookie-cutter 'me-too' title, or
involve catching tiny monsters." A game that copies the visual and gameplay
styles of many Japanese developed RPGs isn't a "me-too" title? Given the
advantage of reading American gamers' tastes in columns such as Goog's,
Mythri has the potential to be everyone's dream RPG, incorporating
everything we like best about the genre and breaking the shackles of widely
held premonitions regarding hand-held and American developed RPGs, but it
has to innovate somewhere to do so.
Here's where you can sell the game to publishers, RPGamers, and most
importantly, me: what makes your game original, and why should I buy it? If
possible, give us a taste (some unsaid insight or perhaps a snippet of
script?) of what Mythri is all about.
:( How dreary...
I don't think it's a title marketed only towards hard-core fans. In my
retail experience, people are always walking in asking for an RPG for the
Gameboy Color...and the kind store clerk always has to show them a Pokemon
styled game (except now we have the Dragon Warrior series--everyone praise
Enix). I think there are a lot of RPG fans who just learned of the genre on
Playstation or Dreamcast, and want something portable. They have...what?
Maybe 6 options?
As for us copying Japanese games, I disagree. One way that style came
about is how limited you are with such tiny sprites and limited colors. As
far as the "spirit" of the game, Team XKalibur is a fan of the SNES Final
Fantasy games, and the Lunar series, and games such as that. To this effect,
we've incorporated the grand storytelling of Final Fantasy, as well as the
character-driven, anime styled scenes of the Lunar series. How many gameboy
games have you played with face-portraits over key dialogue? Or full-screen
anime portraits for dramatic moments? One of our "innovations" would simply
be doing "advanced" things on an 8-bit system. I understand the gameplay
worry, though, and we've addressed it. We've put some innovation in our
battle system, especially in the area of magic. It's important that any
action in a game have a give/take effect. Something shouldn't tip the battle
in your favor, nor should it ruin your chances of victory. Magic in Mythri
is powerful, but can be cancelled if a monster does certain things. I'm
sorry I can't really discuss specifics about it, but it'll change some
Sure, the basic setup of Mythri is "traditional Japanese"...but the basic
setup of FF9 is "traditional FF". They took all the best aspects and did
them perfectly, with a lot of polish. That's what Mythri does--but instead
of FF, we have the entire realm of Japanese Role-playing. We've taken the
best aspects of 8 and 16-bit games, rolled them into a single package, and
then tuned every aspect in the gamer's interest. Ever played that RPG where
a villain tempts you to join him? And you choose "yes" once just to find out
you have to fight him anyway? Not in Mythri.
As for us breaking American RPG stigmas? We don't try to "make it
uniquely American". If you dig Ultima and hate everything that comes from
Japan...you won't like Mythri. It feels very, very Japanese. We don't have
B-Movie references, and our characters don't shout out wrestling
catchphrases. We've tried to make a Japanese RPG, not an American RPG with
Sorry I have to be so cryptic...I'd love to give you a script snipped,
except the only part that'd make sense is a comedic thing near the beginning.
And Mythri isn't really a "comedic" game, so I don't want to give the wrong
impression. So you can't really do much but believe me......but Goog said it
was good--so if you buy it and it sucks, yell at him ;)
Well, I think that covers just about everything.
As another point in Mythri's favor, most of us here at RPGamer have played the first
hour or so, and it really does seem quite worth buying.
Hi Goog,hi Tomm,
I'll make this letter very short. I just read an editorial here on RPGamer,
and I just need to ask this: what is sooo great about FFVI storyline? Ok,I
played every FF since IV,but I had to burrow VI from a friend,and that's why
I only played through it twice.I mean, FFVII story was awesome,mainly
because of all the twists,the weird events,and the wicked villain.But as I
recall,all FFVI had in terms of great storyline aspect was the cast of
characters. Really nothing "Xenogear-esque" about the story...
I put the X in X-lax
Well...know what I liked about FF7's storyline? Cloud's past, and the twist
that he really wasn't who he thought he was. And Tifa going into his mind
and seeing the truth.
The cool part about FF6 is that every character (...almost) had a cool,
in depth past like that (more characters = more cool plot = better plot?).
The rest of the plot was very good; sure it was cliche (evil empire, powerful
secret, etc) but it was done right. There were also very uncliche things (a
completely amoral clown) and up to that point, it was the most dramatic game
ever. Maybe a lot of it's nostaligia, or maybe you're just into Sci-Fi plots
more than magical ones...I dunno.
Oh...and not everyone likes "AGH! MY HEAD!" plot twists, like in
Xenogears. Give me Lunar any day (I really shouldn't say that...considering
the types of game plots I write...)
There's also the sheer intensity of FF6's
plot to consider. The last game from Square to reach America was FF4. FF4's major emotional
scenes were limited to a few deaths, only one of which was of a character you really
had a chance to get attached to, many near-deaths, and of course, people getting turned
to stone or getting sick. For it's time, FF4 was pretty shocking. THEN along comes FF6.
For those who don't recall, here are some of the more provacative elements of FF6: You
get to watch a large population die of poisoning, including a little kid I'm going to
estimate is about 5. It deals with teen pregnancy. Whether or not three major characters
live or die depends on your actions. If you fail at one of those, a major character attempts
to commit suicide, AND YOU HAVE TO CONTROL THIS. Then on top of all that there's the little
matter of the firey apocolypse halfway through the game, and the look into the way people
cope in the aftermath. That's some PRETTY powerful stuff to tackle in a 16-bit RPG. To
this day, only a scant few games to this day have attempted to tackle even a fraction
of FF6's level of controversy, most of those sticking to controversial issues which have
already been dealt with by earlier games, or in some cases, anime. FF7 isn't even one
Alright, let's give it up for Goog and Tomm!!! *applause heard all around*
OK, um...... lemme see if I have this right. Anyone wanting to guest host
has to give you an "old, obscure game" that you want, and they get to guest
host on the following Friday and give a list of games that they would like.
Ummm....... what if a lot of people have the game and want to give it up?
And, who do we have to tell to say that we will give it up? See, I'm just
really lost and........ woah, where am I?
Ok, you! Tomm, umm..... this game, Mythri. What's the plot behind this
game? And when will it be out? (I haven't been paying attention much around
here.....) Will this be something I could get for ..... uhh, this....
"special holiday" that everybody calls..... "Christmas"? Oh, and I need a
GBC, too? But I already have a Game Boy Pocket...... can I still play it on
that? Help me, and lead me the way out! Oh, sorry, I don't have those
While in Trance, I am:
Well, Mythri involves this world torn apart by war. Both hemispheres are
spending all their resources in attempts to crush the opposing side. The
only people who see wrong in this are a small band of rebels. However, these
rebels don't think war is wrong. They don't think the leaders of both armies
are going to destroy the planet. The rebels see that the war is destroying
culture--and that's a danger to mankind. Without culture, what is life or
history? Sorry I can't go into detail...if you put this with the RPGamer
preview, you might have some semblance of an inkling of any idea.
I just noticed it's 4 AM, so I'm going to
sit out most of these so I don't cut into the weekend letter supply.
Didn't we cover this?
Hi Google and Tomm!
I have a question for Tomm: Why should I buy Mythri? :)
(Of course, when it'll be out...)
You have 30 seconds to convince me.... start!
Mythri is a plot-driven, expansive, Japanese RPG for the Gameboy color. It
has exotic locations, unique characters, and a grand plot filled with twists
both psychological and mystical. If you've ever loved...if you've ever
lost...you need to experience....~MYTHRI~
::wipes a tear::
Gee, I wonder what this one's about?
Hey to Goog and Tomm-
I find it rather cool that the ol' Official Unofficial Scribe of
something-I-forget-these-days, circa Northlands, is guest-hosting. Happy to
confuse people with that sentence. ;) Anyway, I was wondering which game
currently out there Mythri is most like. There are very few handheld RPGs
I've been impressed with. Then again, I'm sure the team is doing a great job
and I'll probably be buying it simply because I know (from the
Northlands) that Tomm's a great writer and would do his best to make a cool
Another question I've been meaning to write in and ask is more general and I
hope one of you can answer. A few months ago I found an old stack of video
game magazines I'd bought when I was younger. One of them is "Game Players
Strategy Guide to Nintendo Games" circa August 1991. The issue (as luck
have it) previewed/reviewed a lot of RPGs, including Final Fantasy II (IV
the purists). The end of the preview says, and I quote: "As an added bonus,
readers can follow the Final Fantasy storylines in Disney's new Final
comic book series." Do either of you know ANYTHING about this comic book
series? I have not seen mention of it anywhere. Nor have I ever seen DISNEY
involved with FF. Anyway...
Later and good luck with Mythri!
...if any of you have a copy of aforementioned Disney FF comics--you may send
them directly to me and usurp ChaosNyte's position as "next QA host"...
Unofficial Scribe of Riddles and Haggis...fool :) Word to the brutha' man.
Wow...that's a blast from the past.
Mythri doesn't feel like a "handheld RPG"...did you like SNES RPGs? Good,
come on in to the Mythri party. Mythri is most like...Lunar2. If you hate
Lunar2 with a passion? Scratch that--Mythri is most like FF9. ::shrugs::
It's different enough that we're not ripping them off. Geez, I can't say
anything here that doesn't sound incriminating :(
Yeah...never heard of those comics. Speaking of ripoff, though, if you're a
heavy FF fan--check out anything by Hayao Miyazaki. ::coughs:: Shame on
you, Square ;)
Hey, the FFs never ripped off Totoro!
That'd be spiffy though... imagine the gang from FF9 piling onto the catbus...
Spoilers... not here! It's just about spoilers, no wait..
Hey Goog and Tomm,
Starved for letters, haha too the rescue. Ok number one what is
Boy 3, never heard of that one. Two as a Q&A host do you get a lot of
spoilers? Like at the end Final Fantasy IX when Zidane...( heh, I'm not that
evil). Now here's one for the guest host of the day, how did you get to be a
game developer and how's the publisher search going? Wow, that comic/image
the main page it sweet. Why are chibi's so cool?
Tapion-"Pleaz don't kil me forr my atrocious spelng and;gramar I'm
illiterate, I swear"
Wonder Boy 3? Why...you mean you've NEVER heard of WONDER BOY 3? I
can't...uh...::coughs:: hey Goog, fill him in on Wonder Boy 3 ::glances
I'd like to comment that Goog did get spoiled...on a specific point of
FF9 that *I* wanted to spoil him on. Shame on you guys! But didn't you dig
that scene with Dagger, when Steiner kills Vivi? I NEVER could have guessed
her reaction. Man!
How I got to be a developer? Thanks for asking. I moved nearby someone
who worked for Virgin Games, and did some unofficial game testing for them
for a few summers. He moved on and started his own company, and I did some
level design for him. After that, I applied at some upcoming companies who
said my scripts were promising. When they said I'd be designing games
someone else would be getting credit for producing...the situation sounded
weird, so my friend Keith and I started our own company--Team XKalibur! Our
publisher search is...going. More on that later :)
In short...for all you people who want to know "how do I become a game
designer/musician/artist/programmer/person thing?!?"...the key is testing.
Apply for a bugtesting position. When they have an opening in your
field...you shout real loud till they hear you. Or...you know...be an Assembly Programmer and reply to my opening.
WB3 is a very spiffy SMS game that honestly,
we should probably cover but don't. Long story short, you get cursed at the beginning
by the dragon you get killed and turned into a lizard-man. Then you spend the rest of
the game trying to turn back, and getting turned into other stuff along the way, like
a mouse. As for spoilers, well, let me put it this way. You know the big huge surprise
right at the end of CC? The one about Kid? Someone blindsided me with that a week after
the game came out IN JAPAN. That sucked an awful lot of the enjoyment out of the game for me.
On the other hand, with FF9, I managed to shield myself from everything but the fact you
had 4 characters at once and there's a black mage. Usually I just buy every game instantly
and plow through so that nobody can get far enough ahead TO spoil things, but with all
the games lately, that's a lost cause.
Now come the staff letters...
We haven't spoken to each other for ages... but
anyway, since you're here and all, I might as well
make the most of it. ^^;
1. How far do you think Mythri is in completition?
2. What would be the nearest competitors and/or what
would it be closest too?
3. Just curious, what have you been up to anyway? I
haven't heard from you in AGES. :(
4. ... Well, this isn't really a question, but hell.
Say, when you finish it, could I have an autographed
copy of Mythri? Gold Plated? Collector's edition
perhaps? [For free?] ;)
Just a thought.
A list! And from our dear friend Mistress N!
Heya Mistress N! Long time!
1) I'll never understand the gaming media's obsession with percentages.
Planning and concepts are 100% done. Implementation and Programming is...20%
done? Bugtesting is 5% done? So overall we're about eleventeen percent.
Okay, I made that up...mostly. NEXT QUESTION!
2) Our nearest competitor, like every GBC game ever, is Pokemon. Though now
we have Dragon Warrior 1&2 and 3 on the way. We're closest to...16 bit
games. That's our edge on the competition.
3) You know, a little of this, a little of that. Some Chrono Cross, a
little FF9. You guys have CC and FF9 in Australia, don't you? ...right?
Why are you glaring at me?
...er...anyway kiddies--never try to design a game AND go to school.
It's harder than you'd think.
4) Just cause we love you, Mistress N...just cause we love you. I was only
joking about answer 3...put the boomerang down! Noooooooo!
... more ...
Hey Tomm, Hi Slimey,
First off, thanks for having the time to come on Q&A with google
here so we can bombard you with 50 thousand questions about your
game. Takes real guts, my friend. ;>
And thanks for giving him Shining Force 3 so he can play something
I've already played, instead of all the games I still need to play.
Now then, about Mythri, we all know that it could possibly be the
best handheld RPG out there, so the question I have is: What games did you
pull the most inspiration from? Were you trying for a game like "Game X",
or a mix of "Game X Y & Z"? Thanks for taking the time to answer my
question, and good luck with Mythri.
I'm going to give you a random list of Mythri inspiration, but hide the
percentage inspiration I took from each, okay? (I love this)
Lunar:SS, FF4, FF6, FF7, Lunar2:EB, Evangelion, Lodoss War, Vampire HunterD,
X/1999, MGS, Macross Plus, Chrono Trigger...and a bunch of other stuff from 2
years ago when I wrote the plot.
Remember...if you liked any ONE of those--you'll love Mythri. Really.
It's not just hype....it's not...come on...
Seriously though, thanks for the kind words :)
Hey! You aren't staff!
So your one the guys trying to bring that sweet game known as Mythri. I
worhship you. Anyways What games do you like most and what are your favorite
anime?If you have played FF9, what do you think of it? I still think FF7 is
the best PS FF game.But FF6 is the best FF game of all time.
I think FF9 crushes FF7, but we all have our opinions :)
I like a lot of games "most". Metal Gear Solid is my favorite game ever,
followed closely in no order by Harvest Moon (64 or BTN), Chrono Cross,
Chrono Trigger, Lunar:SSSC, Lunar2:EB, FF6, FF9...and probably something I'm
forgetting. I own every Megaman game ever made...that should count.
My favorite anime? Geez... Probably Trigun, but that could be because I
found the manga before anyone had even heard of it. Or my graphic designer
found it...whatever. Here's a list of that, too: Escaflowne, Trigun, Evangelion, Macross
Plus, Gundam, and anything by Miyazaki (Kiki's Delivery Service, Totoro,
Mononoke...whatever). And no, I don't think the Disney dubs suck. Sue me.
Hehehe. He originally left Esca off, I
had to remind him. Have to love the scream of shock that comes when you forget to list
off something you obsess over.
Hey! You aren't staff either!
Tomm Hulett? As in the same Tomm who wrote a couple of editorials to rpgamer
-- no -- square.net in the days of yore? .......wait a minute .....
nevermind the days of yore thing. I just checked the editorials update .....
is that you rebutting Maciel? If not, sorry, but if so, how did you get
into the gaming business? Sorry, it just gets me excited to see a fanboy
break in. It makes me think if this guy, who used to just write editorials,
is now in there, maybe some day .. . . . . .
I noticed a Gambit reference in your editorial. You a comic fan? Batman's
cool...... No Man's Land rocked and Dark Knight 2 has huge promise. Frank
Miller doing Batman....mmmmm.
Anyway, to the real letter:
Mythri: by far the most promising handheld game to date. Yes, Link's
Awakening must step down (it really wasn't THAT good). With all earnestness,
I am REALLY looking forward to this game. Probably because my GBC has been
mighty lonesome for a LONG time (sorry, Crystalis doesn't cut it for me),
but then again, I think its more along the lines of Goog's earlier,
inexplicable wanting for Kloudelka. Ya know? For some reason a game just
sticks out. Anyway, I'm looking forward to it and THANK YOU for relieving us
of the four-days-a-week annoyance of Goog proclaiming his nostalgic yearning
for -- ahem -- Wonder Boy 3.
Question: What (if you can be specific then by all means specify away) does
your job as lead developer entail? It sounds everything-ish. If you can,
compare it to its equivalent in the film industry (I'm a film major.... I
know all of THOSE jobs).
Oh yeah, Goog.... forgot about ya. Ummm.... I don't know. You are just so
darn good at answering questions that you have answered all of them before I
even asked them (quite the fulfillment of the journalistic dream).
MIKE, Josh Reid's #1 fan, but Goog's #1 lover.... I mean... no....err...
What sex are you again?
Editorials? I wrote fanfics too! Damn good ones! Everyone go read them!
::ahem:: anyway. Yeah, that's me. I am rebutting Maciel, too...go read.
Though I'm hardly a fanboy! I'll never understand America's preoccupation
with otaku culture ;)
And as you can see a few letters up--I was in the gaming business even
back when I was writing editorials and fanfics. Scary, huh?
I gave Goog Shining Force, though. Our friendly neighborhood slimer
man/woman will be yearning for Wonder Boy long into the coming months.
Someone help Goog out...come on. Honestly.
My official title in Team XKalibur is "Co-President and Lead Designer" of
Mythri. While a Designer normally works on concepts and then watches to make
sure everyone creates his vision--in reality (because of our small team) my
job actually is "everythingish". I did concepts, I helped design characters,
I scripted, I mapped areas, I do town dialogue, and have a hand in pretty
much everything that isn't graphic design, coding, music, or art. Wow...I
need a vacation ;)
Thanks for remembering me :)
I'd just like to point out that the reason
I was so big on style is that it's target audience evidently was me, personally. 1800s
horror puzzles turn-based tactical combat funky names! Granted, horror and turn based
kinda clash bigtime, but hey, it was an interesting mix... oh, and you are NOT my lover.
Ah, now YOU'RE a staffer!
Hi Goog. Hi Tomm! *pounce* Long time no talk ;)
Anyway, my question for Goog is can I borrow Shining Force once you're done
with it? I've played 1 and 2 for the sega and 1-3 for the game gear, and
My question for Tomm is what part have you liked the best so far about
making Mythri? Has there been anything you really hated doing?
Have a great column guys!
I hate scripting townspeople. It's a pain in the neck...it really is. "How
do I make this interesting, but informative, but not boring? Will the gamer
WANT to talk to these people? How can this be fun? AAAAARRRRGGGGHHH!!!"
(note to sayers of nay: it's annoying to do if you take the time to do it
I thought I'd hate designing all the area maps, too, but that's really
fun when you get into it. Then you start getting tricky, and designing
that will really twist the player's mind. It's a rewarding job :)
I suppose you can borrow SF3 when I'm done,
but it's getting stuck pretty far down in my queue.
Ah, now YOU'RE a staffer!
To that one guy complaining of FF9's summons showing
all the way through every time, two things: You can
turn that off by removing the Boost ability... and, if
the whole animation is shown, the Eidolons do quite a
bit more damage than just showing the weapon attack
::takes note:: thank you. I didn't have time to check PlayOnline......stupid
Boost leads to full length. Full length
leads to more damage. More damage leads to victory!