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     TAKE THE MONEY. TAKE THE FISH.   July 10, 2005

OK... I am now hoping for a one month window on regaining access to my workspace and my stuff. Ah well.

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I always hear about there being lack of questions and I have only sent one of my own. Luckly that one I sent was posted witch was quite satisfying, alteast that proves that you read all of them....Well since we are about games and RPGing let me get a spontaneous question I am going to think of as I go. well 2 part question slight statement

Question- What would you require for a game to have in order for it to be the best game ever. I dont mean as in nostalgia and what not. I mean 100% flawless, ever game has a flaw some flaws are over looked due to biased opinons of the developer/publisher or fan boys/girls. I would have to play a game that can mimic D&D Pen and paper near 100% witch is impossible.

Statement- What do you think makes a more logical gamer. A hobbyist gamer that enjoys all games for the aspect of the art form it represents. Or those gamers that drain and use every ounce of what each game has to offer. I am the hobbyist, I dont go crazy with one game, fan art, and obssesive thoughts about a game.I more or less just enjoy all games that seem intriguing.

Okay Im done. Ill try to post more each time I see Q&A, my words are rarely heard and what I talk about here is a dumb down version of the thoughts that flow in my abstract mind daily.

I don't think anyone is particularly fond of people who pick one game (or movie, TV show, book, band, etc.) to obsess over while declaring all others suck. Closed-mindedness isn't exactly a virtue.

Anyway though, what makes the perfect game? That's something of an unfair question really. No matter how much I love any given game, if I spend long enough playing it, I'm going to want to take a break and play something which doesn't have much of anything to do with it. So instead, here's some general guidelines to create a really solid console RPG:

Make sure the various people who join my party have actual personalities. Remember that personalities coresponding to their elements don't count. Don't try to pad the length of the game with arbitrary dungeons, by which I mean the only route between these two major towns is a long tunnel through the mountains. Do however give me a lot of optional, non-grueling, side stuff steadily over the course of the game. Rather specifically, periodically expand the size of my world by giving me new vehicles, or upgrades to the ones I have, which allow me to go where I'm supposed to be going, but also opening up various neat little optional areas if I feel like exploring. Give me a lot of little things to think about at any given time (It's been a while since I've found a new spell scroll for so and so, this person's due to learn a new attack from someone when I reach the next town, etc.), make combat interesting, don't cut armor out of your system, throw in weird silly stuff here and there, and try to maintain a consistant and interesting atmosphere and setting. Extra credit if I have some say in the order people learn spells.

I KNOW I've explained this a few times...

dear who ever

is there any info of namco vs. capcom coming over to north america or did the sales did not go very good in japan?

from: johnny3000

There is an entire sub-genre in Japan composed of TRPGs where hundreds of characters from different sources are thrown together in some crazy convoluted fashion. They tend to do quite well, but they also tend to never come over to North America. Granted, there's less of a licensing nightmare in this case than most, but I'm not holding my breath.


Dear, Andrew/Google/Anyone Else

So I was browsing the letters column just now... and came across a guy that said he had played Tales of Symphonia for 185 hours without finishing.

....I suddenly don't feel so bad about my 94 hour playing time in FFX (just beat Seymour Omnis). I don't think I've been this bad with an RPG since I got to 100 hours in FF8 my first time through. Actually, FF8 always takes me a long time... too much stuff to make you dawdle (Triple Triad is still my favorite feature FF minigame).

RPG playing times seem to vary so much with people... I mean, while FF7 takes me 70 hours just to beat. My brother managed to beat it (including all of the Weapons) in 60 hours. Hell, he beats any RPG way faster than I do.

It could be that everyone has their own style... I mean, I generally get way more hidden items 'n stuff than my brother ever does (my treasure hunter rank in FF9 is always rank S, but his was something like C). I also tend to walk around towns looking at stuff and talking to everyone.

But then again, maybe it's just because RPGs these days are filled with so much extra stuff. I could always beat FF4 in about 40 hours without much difficulty. Not to mention that it's so easy to miss items and I'm crazy about getthing every last thing.

So what do you think of RPG playing time? Do people who spend way too much time in an RPG have something wrong with them or do RPGs simply have too much in them these days? Or do my tendencies to spend too long on one task show in my overly long letter?  


If we're talking about actually playing a game and never actually finishing, I was compelled to get every single ability for all my characters in FFT, and thus actually maxed out the playtime clock. On the other hand, if we're talking about the longest I ever went between starting an RPG and finishing it, without starting over, see next letter.

Oh, and then there's Disgaea.

What are the odds?

Dear Question Answerer of the Day,

What is the longest amount of time you've taken a break in an RPG?
I usually give up on an RPG if I've broken away from it for more than two weeks. Same with books (but that happens much more rarely). I think FFIX and FFX are tied  at two months. But longest ever must have been Secret of Mana at about six months, stuck in the ice forest (my first rpg, i was young!). (Longest break in a book was Bonfire of the Vanities at 7 months.)

I once took a six month break from FF6, for some reason letting my cousin borrow it before I'd finished. Then of course the day after he got RE2, I ended up borrowing it for a period of something like 5 years without him ever reaching the second save point, so I guess that balances out. The Wild ARMs series I'm also prone to taking some disturbingly long breaks in for some reason.


Dear Capt. Slime,

I was just wondering if you have any clue if Grandia III is going to be as pathetically(sp.) easy as the first two games.  I liked the stories for both of them, and part 3 seems to look pretty good as well, but the ease of the first two games kinda turned me off.  What do you think?

Thankyou for your time,
Mr. Snuggles

Games as a general rule get easier over time. So, I'd be rather shocked to suddenly see a hard Grandia out there. Particularly when you consider that it would almost certainly tick off their core audience at this point.

The Last Laugh:

If I ever have to do this sort of thing again, I'm going to take some sort of road trip.

Googleshng "DINGOS!!!"

I miss my roof.

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