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ASK MATT
Textual Innuendo October 20, 2005

Matt Demers - 01:01 EST

GRRRR; grrr, I say.

I got more questions about the wicked bus drivers of Guelph than anything else, with second place taken up by Fire Emblem. What is this world coming to? Since really, buses don't have anything to do with gaming, I'm going to address a letter right here; that's right, in the introduction! Can I do that? Well, frankly, I can do whatever I want, so suffer:

You DARE question me? Oh right, I'm the Q guy ^^;;


Mmmkay. So, the bus is supposed to come to -your- bus stop at -exactly- 00/15/30/45? Doesn't this sound a bit odd? I mean, considering that the bus starts out from somewhere at some point. Very, very few bus stops in the world have buses actually coming in at such roundish times.

No, I think you want to find out -where- the bus starts out from, and then figure out how what the minimum time for it to get to your bus stop is. Sounds to me like it takes about ten minutes.

- Person -

That should cover it, I guess.

DMJ

Matt

Yes, it's supposed to come at exactly the quarters-of-the-hour, as dictated by the big white numbers on the bus-stop sign outside my place. Of course, these are probably not valid, as the sign looks like it has been around since the dawn of humankind or so. Sadly, the buses of today must be less precise than they used to be.

So yeah, it's true, allegedly, at any rate: There are supposed to be two #52 buses, each of which does a half-hour cycle in which one bus passes my place every fifteen minutes on the fifteens. Thus, you can see where I'd be a bit irked when they cease to follow that schedule, though in all fairness, they were only 4 minutes early today (and I made it)!



Whoo! An out-of-body experience, that was; refreshing, but in a disturbing sort of way. Doing things so out-of-step will certainly cause me unrest as I try to drift off to sleep tonight. Yes, I do sleep, from time to time, whenever I get a spare lecture/minute. I guess I stop this random gibberish and get to something substantial. Now, behold:




L E T T E R S
A+ for laziness


Hey Matt,

19d - I don't like raisins too much, so I guess the same goes for everyone else.
20c - not the biggest property, so I think that is ok without actually looking it up. Of course when I land on it it tends to mean Game Over, so rent amount is not too big a deal.

I think I will put Phantom Brave in after my exams are done. Gotta finish some non-RPGs first though (close to being done), but it will be my next RPG'ish game.

Matt

Your raisiny logic is stunning... I guess we'll see if it pays off pretty soon, hmm?

Makai Kingdom, all-in-all, is decent. It's Disgaea-ish, but not really as good. If you're a graphics-whore, this is not your game at all. It has pretty good music, pretty bad character development, and a tossed-together storyline. Why is it still number one on my current list? I dunno: Maybe it's because the game is infectious and addictive, and pretty fun, despite all of these faults. Maybe it's because I'm starving for tactical RPGs. Or, maybe it's just because of something to do with aliens and tongue depressors... I am not 100% human-feeling all the time. Anyone seen "Invasion" so far? If so, it's pretty terrible, no?

And, I'm not gonna drop any classes. Maybe next semester, since I want to get a job while I go to school, and three graduate computer science courses is killing me this semester already... adding a job to it would be suicide - no sleep, no free time, or better yet no time to do homework/studying!

A question... have you ever skipped one or more classes just because the game you were playing before them was starting to get good? I missed an entire Friday (3 classes) when I first got FF9 - It was Sunday morning before I realized that I missed my classes, sleep and food.

Have a nice day, and it is good to hear that you are healthy again. Me on the other hand have been sick for about three weeks. Gotta love being sick during exams! ^_^

I'm stealing two tildes - so there!

~Sean~

Matt

If only people would learn... you DO realize that just because I have an infinite number of tildes to give out, stealing makes EVERYONE pay. Too much more of this bamboozling behaviour, and I'll have no choice but to jack up the price!! None of us want that...

I've always been something of a conscientious student, so I don't miss much in the way of class. There are, however, some horrible, windy, cold winter days where the rain or snow is pelting down from the heavens, and I'll already be sitting on the fence about going into campus or not. In those cases, a good game has been enough of a pulling force to make me fall of the fence, miss class, and continue to vegetate in front of the TV on a couple of occasions, yes.



The golden tones of gaming


Hey Matt,

In a rather unforseen deviation from my last letter, I will start ths one off with a question rather than an answer. Now I know it will be hard to narrow down to just one answer, so you can give a list if you would like, but what is your favorite piece of videogame music. Or for that matter which videogame has your favorite soundtrack..... yes... yes... I think the question shall be phraised this way (I apologize if this question was asked before.) My favorite soundtracks would have to be, in no particular order:

Final Fantasy IV, VII, VIII
Chronotrigger
Xenosaga and Xenogears

Those are just the ones I find myself listening to most often, I love many soundtracks from many different games. I think I'll have to give mention to old school Mega Man games (mainly the NES era ones) because they have some serious kick butt soundtracks.

-Binser
Matt Quest VIII - Journey of the Vegetable Farming Mathematician

Matt

Nice question, Binser. More than 90% of the music on my hard drive is video game music, which makes me either really cool, or really geeky, depending on who you ask. Of course, I wouldn't have it on there in the first place if I didn't love it, but on the other hand, I don't mind being labelled a "geek" either, because I fully admit to being one.

Back to your question, though, it's VERY difficult. There doesn't exist a Final Fantasy game with a BAD soundtrack. In all honesty, even FFX-2 had a better-than-average musical score, which is quite a lot to say. Out of the Final Fantasy series, I personally hold the music from Final Fantasy IX and X closest to my heart. There's something about Final Fantasy IX's themes that make me ravenous to re-play the game; more so than other FF games. FFX's soundtrack was just spectacular.

That said, this question is not limited to Final Fantasy... one of the strongest soundtracks of recent history, in my opinion, can be discovered by playing through Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter; there are some STUNNINGLY good themes in that game. Likewise, Xenosaga II was drastically improved from its predecessor... I think I've mentioned this before, but in the first part of the game where you're being chased (and rapidly level-up in the process) the background music is absolutely great.

Also noteworthy:
-The Playstation-era Megaman X games, for their incredibly cool techy sound.
-The Golden Sun games, which truly managed to put the "pretty" in "pretty bad".



Rudra no Hi-who?


I am new to this type of thingy so here goes. Well in answer to your questions. #17 is C, Rudra no Hihou means "Rudra's Secert Treasure" (thank you gamefaqs for that one) and # 18 is A, 1923.769230.

Also, as a gay man are there really any RPGs with gay characters? I know about the lesibian sub plot in KOTR and Fable where you can marry a gay but seriously that is all I have ever seen. But these two games felt like a sandbox that you were just "acting gay."

Fianlly what is up with the trend to have all the guys look like girls, is it too much to ask for a male character who looks like a guy and isn't an "old foogey" at 25?

Mike

Matt

As much as I'd like to list you off a handful of games to add to your library, the RPG genre just hasn't tried to test what is "socially acceptable" at the time. It's not that homosexuality is not acceptable at all; it's that I'm sure the ESRB would be quick to slap a big M rating on anything like what you're looking for, and undoubtedly, some parents across the continent would cause a very large fuss (not something that video game companies want to have to deal with). Besides, I'm sure our old pal J-T would find 300,000 new reasons to grow a new head and start laser-beaming us all with his new pair of eyes if such a game were to be released.

The only gay characters you'll find for now are either hinted at or made fun of in games; Final Fantasy VII/VIII and Shadow Hearts (I think...something about a masseuse? Or an acupuncturist? Or am I crazy?) come to mind immediately, and I guess I can add your items to the list.

Also, it's totally RPG tradition to have fifteen-year-old heroes capable of slaying the most powerful enemies in the world, and geezers who are way past their prime in their thirties. It's just the way it is; perhaps time just flows differently in the video-game dimension. Ask Fayt, and he might tell you the difference. No, Fayt is not invited to do a Q&A anytime soon.



I swear that I play games, really


Heya Mattius Slimeyness Wonderificness (I guess that's even more true with your cold), I've already expressed my indifference regarding the FF remakes coming out, but there are some games that I think should get remakes. . .those games being the ones that were good but never really got finished to begin with. Though the odds against it are pretty much astronomical, I'd like to see them redo Anachronox. I just loved the quirky humor of that game, and sadly, development was going along too slow, forcing them to make a lame ending about halfway through the planned story arc. The game really could use a better battle system, too; that was never its strength. It's strength was presentation; the graphics may not have been the best quality, but the ambience and attention to detail was excellent. And the game has some truly hilarous moments. Of course, since its developer is out of business, I don't expect to ever see it. But it is the kind of game that should really get a remake; it would be nice to see the whole thing.

Matt

Hmmm... that really is too bad, and I will grieve besides you. I had a friend who awhile ago played the game, but only upon a search now did I discover that it was a PC game (that actually seems pretty interesting). Obviously, I didn't pay much attention to him when he told me about it.

...and yes, this would make THREE new games in four days: Rudra no Hihou, Kartia, and Anachronox... I love learning about all of this stuff. Keep it going; there's lots more I haven't played.

So, to actually work a Q in here somewhere, are there any games you've played that felt unfinished and that are worthy of this type of remake?

- Nwash (Wow, I'm still in the lead? Trust me, no one is more surprised than me.)

Matt

Not a remake, as much as another game altogether. I've mentioned it already today, but Golden Sun: The Lost Age was an "okay" game that ended with what seemed to be a huge teaser, setting up for another entry in the series. What in the heck happened to MR.VILLAIN when what happened, happened (those of you who played SHOULD know what I'm talking about)? The face of the whole world was changed in the end, too, making way for a new world map. It was a veritable recipe for more; and yet, we have not seen any! Preposterous!

I'm trying to think of another example that actually answers your question, but my brain is hurting, indicating that there isn't one. Oh, wait, the "new" Star Ocean game too... but I'm not sure it'll be ready for re-make land for quite some time. The ending of that game was more abrupt than almost any other game I can name, and I would go into more details, except that spoilers are not things that I enjoy; I certainly wouldn't want to inflict them upon anyone else.



Whoa now


Hail to thee oh wonderous wonderslime of wonder,

I want points! The answer to question #19 is RAISINS!!!!!! The monopoly question then do you ask? Well, nobody really cares about Park Place now do they? I mean it really only plays second banana to Boardwalk. Mattito my darling, I do not take second bananas....just first bananas.

Well, I suppose I should question you a question since this is Q & A. (Although really you asked a question and I answered it)

My question is......
One a scale of 1 to 7.5, WHO is your favourite video game villian???!!? WHY???

That is all.
Actually, what is your favourite grain and why?

That actually is all....
Luv
SopSop

PS: You need a super cool nickname like Cast....Matt just ain't cutting it...sorry

Matt

Well, hello, little ball of energy! How are things in space? I don't know what kind of raisins (or bananas) you guys eat up there, but butter tarts aren't the same without them (the raisins, that is). And, by the way, how DARE you make fun of my name? My mummy gave it to meeee... :(

Your question makes me giggle, because it seems to be a hybrid of two other coherent questions that seem silly when paired. Anyway, there is no villain better than Kefka. There is just no one else that you love and hate so much at the same time, and his laugh is one of the all-time greatest sound effects in video game history. IF they ever do a remake of this game and withdraw that sound effect in the process, I will NOT be happy. Anyway, he gets a 9.9/10... err... 7.425/7.5.

My favourite grain is definitely sorghum, because it has such a fun name (Sorghum IS a grain, isn't it?), although without rice, we couldn't have rice noodles, from which Pad Thai is borne. What a terrible dilemma! Now I'm hungry, too.

*zooms off to find a banana*



Double Jeopardy?


Dear Matt,

Kudos to you and Nathan for getting half of each of my questions right 4/8 isn't bad at all.

Answers:
#1: The bats were former Light Warriors who crossed Garland the Chaos Knight.
#2 Rudra no Hihou, a Text-Spell Casting game by Square.
#3: Gogo is the Master of the Simulacrum, which is another way of saying Simultaneous Mimicry.
#4: In the hidden dungeon of the Seraphic Gate, after you beat Valkyrie Profile, the hidden armor you find is called Eternal Garb, which can also be found in Star Ocean 3.
#5: General Leo's alter ego is the secretive and silly Mystere.
#6: Culex and his four crystals, an obvious reference to say that Squaresoft and Nintendo collaborated on this RPG.
#7: Byuu the Cross Knight, of whom you had dragons at your command in Bahamut Lagoon.
#8: The super super rare Squaresoft Shooter, Einhander.

Now, for the second round. *licks lips*

#1: In Legend of Zelda: Link to the Past, what tool did you use to get into the heavily guarded castle for the first time?

#2: In Final Fantasy 8, what was the item in question you had to get and exchange in order to obtain the Shiva Card?

#3: In Final Fantasy Tactics, what was the name of the stone used to activate the Time Machine that brought Cloud to Ivalice?

#4: In Disgaea: Hour of Darkness, what weapon is this description referring to?: "Some famous guy's sword. Used, of course."

#5: What RPG series is Thracia 776 a part of?

#6: What's the difference between Final Fantasy Legend and Final Fantasy Adventure?

#7: What GBA RPG involves a man who follows in his father's footsteps by customizing and dueling with automobiles?

#8: What N64 RPG does Super Soldier Johnny Slader star in?

Good luck! ^ ^
~Blade

Matt

Whose column is this anyway? Jeesh, the things I do for you guys...

All right, all right...

#1: Isn't it that cute little candle? I used to run around going "fwf, fwf" to everything.

#2: The Girl Next Door magazine...not for young eyes!

#3: Was it the Zodiac Stone? Or is that of some other importance in the game? Either way, it sounds familiar, and remember... it's been a long time. LOOONG time.

#4: I remember that damn description too, but I can't think of what it was! "Samurai Sword"? There was a NAME involved, though...

#5: The Thracia Series. Man, and we thought Final Fantasy had a lot of sequels!

#6: Now THIS I know. Final Fantasy Adventure was the North American name given to the first Seiken Densetsu game, later re-released as Sword of Mana. Final Fantasy Legend is a turn-based Mystic-Quest-combat-styled RPG for the Game Boy that spawned two blah sequels; I own the third game of the series, which allowed you to consume monster meat to gain some powers and lose others. The only thing I remember about FFLII was that there was a character named Mr.S; possibly, the coolest name ever.

#7: Sorry.

#8: Sorry again. OH WAIT! Is that... the real name of...? You can't actually tell me that Mortal Kombat: SubZero is REALLY an RPG, can you? Don't make fun of me if I'm dead wrong, because I hate/am bad at all fighting games except for Super Smash Brothers.

Thanks again for your trivia-constructing skills... anyone who wants to show me up, should. At any rate, Blade, you should go make some bucks and write for Jeopardy or something. I'd pay you myself, but, well, it wouldn't be in money, as I haven't any to spare!



Everyone, look thoughtful


Heya Matt, I feel that in many ways we are in the beginnnings still of what true artistic videogames are to be. Adventure would be the equal of that chick dancing on the old 5 cent nickelodeons, then Final Fantasy 1 being "A Trip to the Moon". While FF6 and Chronotrigger perfected that style, it was FF7 that ushered in the current "style" of gaming, so you could call it the Citizen Kane of games. Not the greatest ever, but a game changing event in history. Grand Theft Auto 3+ would kind of be like alot of 70's cinema like Taxi Driver, but I start to digress.

Matt

Indeed. I wonder what Conker's Bad Fur Day and the "Playboy Mansion" or whatever it's called would correspond to. Would all of the icky sports games of the last two decades be like the slimy old bargain-bin "Greatest Baseball moments" videotapes you find here and there? Oh... THERE's an idea for a gift for my dad!!! *writes down furiously*

That being said, I view remakes kind of like I view editions on a DVD. The DVD of "A Trip to the Moon" makes it so I can enjoy that movie for years and years to come. I have a collection of many RPG's I havn't played, because like a good classic movie, I plan to get around to them eventually. The Playstation's backwards compatibility helps me do that. Sometimes the editions are bad ones, and I still hope for a single disc edition of a few games(DW 1-6, FF 1-6) one day. I want remakes just for the reason that I can have these games in a library of sorts that I can play for the rest of my life. One day we'll look back at the Suikoden 2's, the Xenogear's, the Breath of Fire 2's as historical valued films, lets hope the game industry realizes the importance of preserving these games for future generations to enjoy.

Matt

Okay, fair enough. It WOULD be nice to see single-disc releases of these things, but seeing as it would be far more lucrative for companies to sell remakes one-by-one (people are going to buy them anyway), I don't know when/where we'll see a compilation like this, if ever. I love the idea, though.

Really, you're right: I don't want to lose the memories of the great games of past years either, and I wish that my library were more complete as well. There's a problem though: Remakes will only ever serve to immortalize the games that were most popular. The Kartias and the Rudra no Hihous and the Anachronoxes are gone forever with a very high probability, and the only way you're going to see them in your library is if you hunt them down on e-Bay.





C L O S I N G
IN CONCLUSION:

With that, I'm spent!

I'll miss you all on the weekend, but I'm very much looking forward to writing up assignments in good, playing some Atelier Iris or perhaps some Final Fantasy VI, and most of all: SLEEPING.

Not quite as on-the-ball today, though most of you got the Monopoly question with no problem. Hmm, there is one thing that just doesn't do much for my palate in most baked goods, and that thing is b) Nuts. There is nothing worse than a moist, fudgy, decadent brownie exploding with gooey chocolatey goodness, only to have walnuts stuffed into the mix to wreck it all.

Park Place costs unfortunate dice-rollers $1,500 with a hotel, so the answer to Question #20 was c). Thirty more points were up for grabs! So if we take a look at the scoreboard, we see that Nwash and Jbumi are just lightyears ahead of the rest! Not only have they responded correctly with a stunning frequency, they have made some pretty darn good guesses along the way. We may be looking at our first guest-hosts... but, we have a long way to go yet, so keep guessing away.



Last Questions of the Week:

Question #21: If you spell Andrew's well-known nickname backwards and then loosely translate from french, what do you get? (15 points)

a) The Book Body
b) The Broken Book
c) Lemon Road
d) God's Word
e) The Word Bag

Question #22: When/why did I come up with Question #21? (15 points)

a) While helping a friend study for an upcoming french test, I got bored.
b) While helping a friend study for an upcoming french test, I stumbled across a familiar word in the french-english dictionary.
c) While on my way to school, riding the famous bus I always speak of, I got bored.
d) While at the gym on the treadmill, I needed a way to pass the time.
e) Last night, because he told me it would make a good SOCK question.

To respond to these questions, or send me a personal Q&A, send away right about here, and I'll record your progress! The qna address does the job too, in a pinch, if need be!

Three items for sale, and some people are almost halfway to the second one on the list already. Someone mentioned cookie recipes...do you want me to send you a compilation of my mom's best cookies as a prize? It seems pretty weird as a Q&A prize, but I have little to work with, here. I think I'm going to add something else, too, next week, so keep watch.

Things to work for (the SOCK item shop!):

100 points: Tilde (infinite number remaining!)
500 points: Guest-co-host Opportunity #1 (5 remaining!)
100000000 points: All-expenses-paid trip to E3 (can this be yours??)

For now, I don't have much more to say! It's been a fun week, everybody. Keep sending your queries in, and we'll be sure to keep doing our best to answer 'em.

This is where I say goodbye, and have a great weekend; so goodbye, and have a great weekend.

wonderslime@rpgamer.com
***Matt's landlord decided that it was time to crank up the heat to an uncomfortable level.

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When your throat is parched dry, there is nothing quite as tasty as a 571 mL bottle of Minute Maid Pink Grapefruit Juice. Try some, today!

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Matt's Next Unhealthy Addiction

Another Unhealthy Addiction

Matt's Top 3 Current Games:

1. Makai Kingdom
2. Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana
3. Warioware: Twisted!

Matt's Top 3 RPG Desires:

1. Dragon Quest VIII
2. Final Fantasy III

3. Mario & Luigi: PiT

Cookie o' the Week:

Mattie's Mom's Oatmeal Cookies
That's right! A real recipe! If SNES Final Fantasy games are my nostaglic video games, these are my nostalgic baked goods.

-1 1/2 cups butter

-1 1/2 cups brown sugar

-1 egg

-2 1/2 cups oatmeal

-1/2 tbsp baking soda

-1 3/4 cups flour

-1/2 tsp cinnamon

-------- -a little bit of cinnamon

-a little bit of white sugar

Cream together butter and brown sugar. Mix in the egg. Separately, mix together the next four ingredients with a fork. Combine the wet and dry mixtures. Roll into balls, and place onto cookie sheets. Flatten slightly with a moistened glass dipped in a mixture of white sugar and cinnamon. Bake for 12-15 minutes at 350 degrees, and cool on a rack.

SOCK standings:

1. Nwash
230 pts

2. Jbumi
195 pts

3. DDX
110 pts

4. Ourobolus
90 pts

5. Binser
80 pts

6. Arros Raikou
69 pts

7. Angel0886
62 pts

8. Yugiohfan1986
61 pts

9. darkcecil13
57 pts

10. Gryphon
52 pts

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