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Googleshng - March 20 '03- 2:00 Eastern Standard Time

Yesterday I suggested that all you people out in reader land "look through your favorite RPGs, find the most obscure one you have, and toss a letter in about it." Evidently a lot of you missed the word favorite there, because today we have a whole lot of bashing going on.

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First, let's prepare the time machine...

have you used one of those top-loading NESs? I'd really like to know how well they work, as I've been tossing around the idea of buying one. Few people I've talked to even remember the dang thing (I think it was released after the SNES), so I thought I'd hit you up.

Thanks for your time, g.

-jaraph

Googleshng:
I am in fact the proud owner of an SNES styled NES. Far more reliable than the older models. No more blowing on carts.

Obscure for good reason.

Hey Google! I haven't written into this Q&A since Thor up and died. You asked about old obscure RPGs, which I happen to own a few of.

While browsing through my old NES carts, one game in particular caught my attention: Hydlide. Have you ever played this game? Did you even know it existed? Well, I must have bought it on some occaision, but upon putting it into the NES and getting it to work (a 30 minute chore, pore old thing) I was greeted to the worst music I've never heard. But the word "worst" isn't only used there! The game itself is just such a piss-poor attempt at an A.RPG that the creators (I don't even know or care who the company is) should be lined up in single file and kicked in the scrotums/female scrotum equivalents. Let me endulge you on the wonders that are -- HYDLIDE!

You begin amidst a bunch of blue crap. When you walk into it, a bunch of noise happens, you lose half your life, and you kill it. You get 1/100 experience. After standing still (in grass, not trees mind you) you somehow gain all your energy back in around 6 seconds. BUT WAIT! If you hold the A button, you go into "attack" mode (no change in animation, unless you count the word ATTACK MODE animation) where you actually hurt guys, but get killed in 1 hit. If you keep up this monster killing frenzy for like 10 minutes, you get up to about level 3, 3 times as much HP/strength/whatever others stats go up, and suddenly stop gaining EXP from anything. There is no text, no story, and no aim. It just keeps getting better.

NOW you get to go on a quest! Oh goody! You first (I think first) go get a cross from a simple one-screen dungeon. Then, you take it and go fight a vampire who suddenly can get hurt, albeit NOT easily. After a few hundred deaths and a good bit of luck, you may actually beat him. Hooray. Now you must walk across the sea and fight sandworms.....? After killing REALLY hard guys and getting to level 4 or 5 (after 3 they don't help all that much, unless there's a way to get to 9 really quickly) you then go to some creepy dungeon with fake chests. This is as far as I got before the game locked up. It was pretty much blind luck finding these things, and for all I know they were in the wrong order. I'd say don't play this game, but it was honestly kind of fun seeing, in all honesty, the worst game of any type ever created. I don't know if there's a ROM available, but I strongly suggest you see how far gaming has come. I recall hearing about a "Super Hydlide" as well. My eyes are open, believe me!

-D.A. Double Dan

Googleshng:
So, to review, Hydlide sucks.

And on THAT note...

You want questions about obscure RPGs, eh?

Hmmm...

Wasn't SUPER HYDLIDE, like, the absolute worst RPG ever made?

I got suckered into buying it for about $70 when I was a lad. After beating PHANTASY STAR II (my very first RPG), it was the only other Genesis RPG available that summer. I was pretty hard up (obviously) for a new quest, so I plunked down more money than any kid should be legally allowed to spend on a game.

What I got for my $70 was hours and hours of "fun" -- walking around (with a two frame walk animation, no less), slapping monsters (or townspeople? who could tell...) with what looked like a chicken leg.

Never did beat it. Got to the last dungeon, but the graphics were so horrendous that I honestly couldn't tell where the frikkin' doors were at half the time.

Mowed alot of lawns for that fart of a game. Life is cruel.

So the next time you kids are tempted to complain about "disappointing" games like, say, XENOSAGA or FINAL FANTASY VIII, just remember -- it could be worse. It could be ALOT worse.

Thank you for your speciman,
-- VIVI = Black Mage #66

Googleshng:
So, to review, Super Hydlide also sucks.

Well, this person might like it...

Good call Goog. Although I'm eagerly awaiting to play Xenosaga, university and living on my own without a job has kind of delayed that endeavour a little. I was getting kind of sick of the big:

Xenosaga Spoilers!!! all over the place.

I had to skip an entire column once because of that. Then again, once I play the game, I'll just go back and check out the archives.

Anyway, onto other things. Obscure games? Hmmm, I remember playing this one game called 7th Saga, for SNES, when I was in about grade 6. To this date, I think it's been one of the hardest RPGs I've ever encountered. The storyline wasn't anything mind-boggling, but it was interesting. You pick one of 6 or so main characters and have to go out and collect these keys or runes or whatever they were buried throughout the world in different ruins. You periodically encountered the other potential characters you COULD have chosen and you can chat, let them join you (only one at a time) or fight them. The thing was, if you team up with someone else and beat the last boss, you two duke it out for who gets all the power. So the dude you spent the entire game building up to help you is the one you have to kill in the end. Anyway, it also had a pretty cool looking battle scene for it's day and fairly well done character design. Jeez, maybe I should do a review!

Although it wasn't even close to being one of my favourite games, it still was a pretty cool RPG by Enix. Okay, now for a question: do you know anybody that can hook me up with the first two Suikodens at a decent price? hahaha, thanks.

Element

Googleshng:
The 7th Saga had a lot of potential to it, with the 7 different characters to choose from and all, but they really squandered it. I mean, not only is the plot exactly the same no matter which character you play as, but there's only one ending too. One ending which doesn't make any sense whatsoever for the majority of characters at that.

What really bothers me though is how when you reach what you'd think would be the end of the game, you more or less lose all equipment worth having, realize you're only half done, and have to character build like crazy.

Ironically, the same idea was tried by Square later in SaGa Frontier, which is, appropriately enough, the 7th SaGa.

Funny story here.

Specifically, the first RPG to come out on the Playstation, Beyond the Beyond. I bought it on sale for 19 bucks and regreted it. I hate not completing something and yet, disliked BTB so much it was more than two years later before i managed to finish it. Its not that the story was bad, and the graphics were decent for the time, but the game play sucked in a way i dont think i should mention for fear of the children. So what did you think of it, and what are the chances that a sequal comes out whos gameplay doesnt blow?

Googleshng:
A lot of people don't like Beyond the Beyond. Perhaps even most people. What I've always found odd though is what a huge percentage of those people adore Golden Sun and the Shining games. They're all made by the same people, and the gameplay between BtB and GS are fairly similar.

Personal Questions (Why must I pun?!?)

Googleshng
Obscure game time
I have Persona 2: Eternal Punishment. I guess it's not really very obscure at all but I was quite suprised to find a used copy of it at Software Etc. And I've never really talked to anyone else who's played this game, so I figured I'd mention it. It's a swell game. Nice and, um, Japanese. I mean, there's very little in this game that appeals to most U.S. rpg fans. It's just weird.
I saw Rhapsody in the same place, but I passed on it. What'd the deal with that game? It looks interesting, but I'm afraid someone will walk in on me while the character's singing and give me funny looks.
Tim the Zuhalter

Googleshng:
I gave Persona 2 a miss based on the grounds that only half the game was translated, and that Persona 1 sucked. Something about the first person dungeons that looked like they were designed by having someone sneeze on a piece of graph paper. I've heard some fairly good things about Persona 2 though, so don't let me go scaring you away too much.

Rhapsody meanwhile is a game with semi-tactical combat and characters who sing a lot. For more information, feel free to dig up our review.




The Last Laugh:

Well, that was an interesting column. On Monday I'll probably share thoughts from all these people who have obscure games they actually enjoy. Until then, have a good weekend.

Googleshng "The end of times shall come tomorrow at 9." @rpgamer.com

No wait, not times, Farscape. Always get those mixed up.

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