THE CRAVE GAMING CHANNEL
V'lanna
 






Affiliates
extralife
metacritic
AnimeBooks
AnimeNation
GameMusic.com
Play-Asia.com

Send a Letter Mail Me Recent Columns Archives

ASK MATT
Rain on my Parade
November 29, 2006

Matt Demers - 21:36 EST

SO, WHAT TO SAY? Coming up with something for the introductory section can be especially difficult at times, because it needs to get the discussion ball rolling, and requires at least a little smidgen of creativity. The problem is, I'm sick of talking about the latest news article that I read indicating some other piece of bad news for Sony, and I'm sure that none of you really care all that much about my progress in Final Fantasy XII. Thus, from this day on, I'm eliminating the intro section, to spare both you, the readers, and me, Matt, the grief.

Nah, just kidding. I can't just get rid of it. I'm just uninspired and cold today... forgive me.




LETTERS
"What hot new games?" "WHAT HOT NEW GAMES!?"


So this is my first time writing in after reading QnA for a very long time.

Matt

I'm glad you took the time! Now, what's on your mind?

As concerns your PS3 questions, I don't have one, and I don't know anyone who does here in Alaska. I think Sony messed up big time though. After watching my girlfriend play through some of FF12 I've decided that they really didn't need to make a new system for another 4 years or so. Besides I don't appreciate them trying to forced the Blu-Ray format on me.

Matt

You know, I've said the same things for a long time. If companies chose not to release new consoles every five years, developers could grow the ability to perfect games for those systems instead of having to re-learn which things work and which things don't twice every decade. Think of the huge advances that were made on the original NES between Super Mario Bros. and SMB3. Now, because games take so much longer to put together, we never see that sort of progression; that sort of improvement to nearly as great of an extent, because companies only have time to put out a single new game for their big franchises. I suspect that many people wouldn't "demand" next-gen if they were given the option. But that's just my point of view. I'm not saying that newer and better systems have no place in the world, but I think that a product cycle of five years feels like it's just too rushed.

And hey, Sony's not forcing you to buy into their Blu-Ray scheme. One could argue the opposite; at a price of $600, it seems like more of a deterrent than anything...

Recently I've been playing FF3 on the DS. I like it, but the game seems unpolished. I know crazy to consider given the massive graphics, story and game-play overhaul it received. But I have no idea what I'm doing. I just got the Enterprise and have no idea where to go from here. Heck the only reason I got the ship at all was because I couldn't go anywhere else.

Also the requirement that I have a mage cast mini on my party is amusing, but I wasn't using a white mage at the time it was required. Thus I had to switch my jobs around and suffer with the sickness for a few battles so I could have an effective character in my party again. It would have been cooler if I could have just had the guy Desch cast it on me(since he casts it on himself) so I could maintain the party I wanted.

Matt

Ah, I think it's a really neat idea to integrate the spellcasting into the gameplay, and even in the instruction booklet (and possibly in-game), you're told that it's a good idea to be flexible with your job choices. Final Fantasy III is a game that gives you a lot of customization, but requires that you actually do use different aspects of the system that are at your disposal at the same time. There will be times on your quest where you'll find it very, very, very difficult to progress unless you switch the jobs of your characters to something else, and that's just the way the game works! It's not really that different from other games with jobs, though; the ability to change is there exactly SO that you can change your strategy if you need to depending on the situation.

Of course, keep in mind that this is one of the very first games (Dragon Warrior III might have been the first, but I'm not really sure) to ever have a "dynamic" job system, and I think that for its time, it was really quite outstanding. From a 2006 perspective, though, of course certain aspects of the game might seem a bit unpolished. The idea of this remake was obviously to maintain the original feel while packaging it up in a much nicer format. It's a huge gift to the old-school-lovers, but it might not be able to be 100% appreciated by everybody, for sure!

So, to end this huge rant, I'm sure you're not alone. The game is a bit open-ended, but try to enjoy that aspect. Explore the world, see what you can find, and I'm sure you'll be able to figure things out with a little bit of effort. Talk to NPCs, too, especially if you're feeling lost; I find that they pretty much point you towards exactly what you should do next, much of the time.

Also I've started Twilight Princess on the Wii. Why is there an area that I can fall of the edges when my only option to defend myself from the nasty bat/bird things is to jump at them? I hate dying like that, very frustrating.

Past that I love the game so far, and while it's odd to me that Link is right-handed, it makes some sense so I'll forgive them.

Matt

Yikes- that does sound slightly frustrating. As for the right-handed Link? I think that it's a little sacrifice, considering that keeping him left-handed could make the control feel very unnatural indeed for 90% of the audience. On the other hand (no pun intended), it would have been really neat to be able to select your handedness before starting the game, and thus have an ambidextrous Link that holds his swords in whatever hand is chosen.

Ummm, yeah I think that's it. Currently my RPG backlog includes a ton of stuff. Kingdom Hearts 2, Tales of the Abyss, Disgaea 2, FF12, Wind Waker, Okami, Valkyrie Profile 2, DQ8 and....Actually I think that's it for RPGs. So hopefully I start beating some games, cause otherwise I'm not going to be able to buy the hot news ones coming out.

Wait what hot new games?

Matt

We have Rogue Galaxy on its way, as well as another Wild Arms (if you're into that sort of thing), Dawn of Mana, a trio of .hack G.U. games (the first was just released a few weeks ago), and that's just for the PS2! With plenty of RPGs on the way also for the DS, and a smattering in development for the next-gen consoles, the number of "hot new games" is quite large. So get playing! And hey, thanks for writing in!



"Black Friday" ... it sounds more like a historic stock market crash or something.


Hey there Matt

Earlier today I was skimming the gaming news during my break at work an I noticed this, an article about physical complaints reported by people who've been playing the Wii. Now I agree that the case of the chap who complained that he worked up a sweat playing the boxing game on Wii Sports is just a fitness issue. However, I believe the case of the twelve-year old girl who experienced "numbness" in her arm is a more serious matter. I don't claim to be an expert on the subject, but it sounds to me like the girl is suffering from a "repetitive strain injury"– an issue which concerns me as I suffer from hand/wrist problems due to my job.

I imagine that most gamers won't have to deal with this issue, but for those who have existing conditions or who are predisposed to developing such conditions (due to environmental, genetic, etc. factors) I wonder if the Wiimote couldn't exacerbate the situation, and it troubles me that neither the author of the article nor the VP of Nintendo, who was quoted, seem all that concerned. They seem, rather to make light of the issue. The representative of Nintendo's charming response was that the game "was not meant to be a Jenny Craig supplement" while the article makes reference to the "Nintendo thumb" "condition". As someone who grew up on NES and SNES I'm familiar with the discomfort a great deal of gaming could cause your left thumb, but the fact is after a while you grew a callus on te thumb and then it ceased to be an issue. Hand and wrist problems on the other hand are more serious and can become painful chronic conditions and "Jenny Craig" won't help you there either, I'm afraid, as it's not a fitness issue.

I'm concerned that if Nintendo and the companies developing games for the Wii don't fully acknowledge the issue they could end up creating games that put an inordinate amount of stress on the hand and wrist and that this could become a problem for an increasing number of gamers. Just think of an RPG wherein someone decided you had to swing the Wiimote in order to swing your sword. Now think of how many monsters one kills in an RPG and how many blows it takes to kill each one... I think that could qualify as "repetitive strain".

As for me, sadly, I think I'll have to rent a Wii before I take the plunge and buy one because I have a sneaking suspicion that it's going to be physically impossible (or unwise in any case) for me to play Wii games until I get a different job.

Best,
Erika

Matt

You're absolutely right, Erika. I think that that is a very valid concern. Honestly, though, I would be surprised if there weren't warnings slapped into every instruction manual out there already. Sometimes, games shouldn't be played by everybody, or can't be played by everybody. For years, game manuals have sternly warned people who are prone to epileptic seizures to refrain from playing, because of the risks involved. The people that are affected? Well, that's life. They have to use their judgement and decide that "no, maybe playing games isn't a good idea for me."

In the case of the Wii, it is quite obvious that not everybody will have the physical ability to play everything. In the same manner as the epilepsy-ers out there, affected people should use their heads: If you continue to play a game when you feel a sharp pain in your arm, and you keep on swingin' that Wiimote around even after you can't feel your arm anymore, then you're pretty stupid. It's just like a sport: Tennis games don't last forever for a reason, and fencing matches last for a few minutes. The games that require a lot of movement? Don't play them for five hours straight! It's a matter of intelligent judgement, and because I'd bet my bottom dollar that Nintendo already has warnings in its manuals, I don't think that fault lies with the company on this issue.

On the other hand, though, I think that it's a bit insulting to take such a cavalier approach when answering these valid questions. With responses like the one about Jenny Craig, above, the smarmy impression that is given is definitely not one of concern.

Now I'm interested, though: Among Wii-owners out there, do you find that using the remote gets to be very tiresome after awhile? I'm interested in hearing what you have to say!



Rumblings and rumours about Final Fantasy VI additions!


Hey Matt,

I was reading the last column and found potential additions to FFVI Advance. Maybe this is old news, but I figured that I would reply to the quickie about a possible playable character....

This page has a ton of info on the original FFVI and all of its remakes.. If you scroll down, you will read about some new details that may be in the game!

Hope this isn't old info!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Final_Fantasy_VI

Enjoy.
Jon

Matt

It's so exciting, isn't it? A real-life remake of Final Fantasy VI that doesn't include ridiculous loading times and awful sound. I'm so anxious! The hype is really starting to build on this remake; I can feel it. And you know something? I'm not going to click the link, because I don't want to know what things they've added. I want this to be a total surprise for me! And I'm sure that many other readers will agree, too... though hey, if you want to go and check out the link, you're more than welcome to!

We're only a couple of months away from seeing this on store shelves, if all goes well. Square Enix, this is too awesome for words!



Guilty Gamers


Yay Matt, only 8 more days until i'll be slashing my way through the newest Zelda adventure (Hopefully I'll actually pass it, as i'm yet to pass a console Zelda, though i've passed all the handheld ones so far!).

Anywho, with Suikoden 5 fading in memory and Harvest Moon DS losing its grip on my mind, i've turned back to Wild Arms 3/4, mainly 3 has I have to pass it soon before I have to give it back to my friend, and I realise, its very hard to actually get into playing Wild Amrs 3. I don't know why but when I start it up my mind wants to play other games like Super Smash Brothers, and Kessen3. How am I meant to pass my backlog if I sort of don't want to?

Matt

Nothing says that you have to trudge begrudgingly through a backlog if you don't want to. If you aren't having fun playing the games on your list, then why bother? It's this sort of guilty feeling, though, that allowed me to make it to the end of Wild Arms: Alter Code F, to be honest with you; after sinking 35 hours into the darn thing, it felt like it would be a huge shame to just quit playing.

*sigh*

I understand where you're coming from, because the feeling is all-too-familiar. Come on, though- you don't have long to wait until you have something new in your lap, so suck it up and be just a liiiittle bit patient! Zelda will be here before you know it, to save the day.

Sigh so on Super Smash Brothers Melee anyway, My brother and I have had many epic battles. Him as Link and I as either Kirby or Pikachu. Its a lot easier to beat him in SSBM then Soul Caliber 2 as he is a demon as Link in that game. I'm extremely lucky if I can manage a 10% win rate.

So I guess i'll end it here, hopefully my next letter will be praising the glory of the Wii!

Matt

We shall see, shan't we? I hope that it ends up being all it's cracked up to be! And for heaven's sakes, take breaks if you feel like your arm is going to fall off.

Bainick wonders why there are so many games that features Gene manipulation?

Bainicks Top 5 most wanted

1: LOZ: Twilight Princess
2: Yoshi's Story DS (Its out but I don't have the money for it yet)
3: Super Smash Brothers Brawl
4: FF 12
5: Fire Emblem: Goddess of Dawn (I have Path of Radience)

Matt

There are all sorts of great games on the horizon, across a variety of different systems. 2007 is going to be an awesome year in the gaming world!



Long-time reader, first time writer


Hi Matt,

This is the first time I write in , and I just wanted to say I can relate to your end-of-term=tons of assignments=no game time problem , though by no means are my homeworks as complicated as yours.

Matt

Oh, give me a break. I'm sure that they're plenty difficult, and it's certainly not a competition! Just do your best, and you'll get time to play a good RPG eventually. Some day. Hopefully.

Though the little free time i've gotten i've spent on FFXII and Disgaea 2. (Oh by the way I finally spotted zyxenfryx or however you spell it). On the subject of rpg towns to live I'd have to say Windfall Island in the Wind Waker. It just looks so calm and full of life.

And about video game tattoos I'd probably get de Vincent's Cerberus emblem from Dirge of Cerberus.

Matt

Ooh! Interesting choices. I haven't chimed in with where I'd like to live, yet, but I'd probably choose someplace constantly warm and sunny. Costa Del Sol, from Final Fantasy VII. Or Summers, from Earthbound. Mmmmm...

I laughed when I read that you had spotted Zyxenfryx in Disgaea 2. It's so weird to think that without me in this world, that piece of Disgaea 2 would never have come to be. It's a bizarre ego-inflater, even though it's pretty much the smallest "achievement" of all time.

Well to get to the question part of the letter:

You see, I have had a PSP for about 4 or so months now, yet I only have two games: Worms:Open Warfare and The Legend of Heroes (Which I quit a few hours in because I tought the battle system very boring).

Now I see my poor psp all alone and unused so I'd like to now what games (rpg or otherwise; available or upcoming), you recommend for me to get, maybe for Christmas? any games you suggest are fine except that I don't like sport games.

Lance, would be thankful for the wonderslime's great wisdom

Matt

That's a really tough question, honestly. I have to recommend to you Valkyrie Profile: Lenneth, because there really isn't much for me to recommend besides that game. I have heard that this remake is really good, so you might really enjoy it. I heard that Blade Dancer was a little bit on the boring side, but I could be wrong. Otherwise, there ARE a fair number of RPGs that might be on the way; I say "might" because the fraction of PSP RPGs that have been cancelled for North American release has been obscene, so far. However, Riviera: The Promised Land is supposedly in development for the system (it was already released as a strong title for the GBA), and there are apparently some Tales games that are in the works, too. Crisis Core: Final Fantasy VII was supposed to be released as a PSP title, but Square Enix has been rather quiet on that front these days...

ps. I hope SOCK2 gets here soon so I can join the action rom the start XD

Matt

Heh heh, well, no promises!! I'm doing my best to think up new ideas and put things together, so my hope is that I'll have a new contest up and running sometime fairly soon.



QUICKIES

Look Matt, we all know that the Sony and the PS3 are going to crumble in the face of the competition but what about X-Box 360? Blue Dragon looks like it could be a system-seller and thats one reason that i'm looking towards Microsoft for the future

Matt
I think that the Xbox 360 is actually showing more promise now than I've ever been willing to give it credit for before. Not only does Blue Dragon look phenomenal, but a new Banjo-Kazooie game was just announced a little while back, if I remember correctly. However, I don't see much besides Blue Dragon on the horizon on the RPG front, and I just don't like the idea of having three different systems in my place. I barely have room for me!


MOGNET MAIL

If you have Final Fantasy III DS, send me your friend code, and I'll add yours! My code is 515 480 192 117. Then, send me mail, and I'll respond to you in the column. The moogles will be waiting, kupo!

Have you tried the final boss theme from FF:Mystic Quest? I was listening to FF:MQ music the other day and it was a nice tune, don't you agree?

Tomi

Matt
While Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest didn't have a lot of things, it did have a few nice musical pieces. I actually love the normal boss music more than I do that of the final fight, but to each their own, right?

What classes do you use?
Which one do you like best?
I love the Geomancer class~

Lilly

Matt
I've always been a big sucker for red mages, because they can come in handy in so many different ways! If you need a back-up healer, they can play the job handily, but they're also good if you meet monsters that require some elemental action. In the interim, you don't have to "Guard" all the time, because they're pretty great with many weapons, too! I try and use a wide variety of classes, though, because they're all pretty neat.



IN CLOSING

'Tis Friday tomorrow, already. Good jeepers, these weeks are going by fast! For interested parties, Boojum should be cohosting next Tuesday, so if you have something to ask him, please make him feel welcome with a question or two.

Now that the giant wave of game releases has crested, what upcoming titles are you looking forward to most? Are you like me, anticipating Fire Emblem: Goddess of Dawn? Or how about Final Fantasy VI's remake? Rogue Galaxy? Don't forget Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass. Or Xbox's ace in the hole, Blue Dragon? And of course, Final Fantasy XIII?

Yes, my friends, we have a whole lot to look forward to, and thus we have a whole lot MORE to talk about! Write in to me, and you might just get a response in a Q&A someday soon. I'm looking forward to hearing from you!



Send a Letter!

Inbox Status: Actually, pretty darn good!



slimey@rpgamer.com
Matt accidentally had dessert twice today.


MY final boss begins tomorrow. It's time... to strike up the dramatic music!

Most Recent

Nov. 29: Matt

Nov. 28: Matt

Nov. 27: Roku

Nov. 26: Josh



Links

About the Host

Quote Archives

Playstation 3 Compatibility Guide



What I Want to Play:

1. The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess

2. Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance

3. Fire Emblem: Goddess of Dawn

4. Yoshi's Island DS

5. Pokémon Diamond/Pearl



What I'm Playing:

1. Final Fantasy XII

2. Final Fantasy III DS

3. Final Fantasy V Advance



Uhhh...

This space seems awfully, terribly empty, doesn't it? :(



© 1998-2013 RPGamer All Rights Reserved
Privacy Policy