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Synapses Slowly Begin to Fire November 6, 2006

Josh - 9:49 EST

Well, there was some damage in THONG today...sheesh.

As for FFXII, I said I'd post some thoughts of mine, so here they are:

  • I like the battle system. A lot. Every once in awhile I miss the whole 'full control' aspect of everything, but it really isn't necessary. The Gambits are fun to mess around with, and the upshot of the whole thing is that it makes the battles go by more quickly, without losing any challenge or anything.
  • The License Board is pretty cool, too. While all of your characters are essentially just shells that can do anything they want, the License Board lets you specialize (or not specialize) your characters anyway you see fit! Add the Gambits to that mix, and you can create any type of character you want.
  • The story is decent so far...reminds me a lot of FFT (surprise), without any of that silly, convoluted mess.
  • Voice is acting is above average, although Vaan gets on my nerves, and for some reason, some of Penelo's VA sounds like the voice actor was reading her lines with the mic in her throat. And Fran sounds like Audrey Hepburn with a wad of cotton in her mouth.
  • Graphics are gorgeous. 'Nuff said.
  • All in all, this is one of the most enjoyable games I've played in recent times.

Plotting out characters' futures!

Here's something I might also ask Matt about: how are you structuring your FF12 character development? Here's my plan (and I know it goes along RPG stereotypes in terms of gender and looks - it's deliberately so, so I never forget who's who):

* Vaan is a "jack of all trades" - his equipment is limited to swords and heavy armor, but he's dabbling all magicks and a few technicks. I have no gambits for him (after all, with this plan, he needs all the LP he can save); he's my "always manual" character and usual leader.

Basche is my tank - weapons galore, heavy armor, and augments.

* Balthir is my support guy - long distance weapons, time magick, some technicks.

* Ashe is my white mage...

* ... and Fran my black mage.

* Penelo is my technick guru.

As you can see, I tried to arrange it so two of my characters don't need to consume MP, making them almost always good for Mist attacks, and for stuff like the accessory that halves elemental damage in exchange for permanent Silence.

What about you?


Ah...yeah, I sorta went with some combination we go.

  • Vaan: Paladin/Thief/Technick Master. He'll learn the most useful White Magic, and he'll learn all the Technicks.
  • Penelo: Ninja - I have her as augmented as possible, as quickly as possible. She rarely gets hit, and attacks faster than anyone else. Give her Berserk and Haste, and she rarely has downtime.
  • Basch: Tank. Also knows some Green Magic buffs to keep himself up and running.
  • Balthier: Support and Weapon Master. He can use any weapon, as well as Green Magic and Time Magic. Keeps the party buffed from the back.
  • Fran: Multi-role. I have her learning a bit of everything.
  • Ashe: Master Wizard. She's going to learn every magic out there...almost there. ^^

(Ack! Math? You're not Matt!)
26: A
L26: C


No, I'm not Matt, but I too will have a degree in Mathematics in about a month! And a degree in Computer Science too! So nyah! :D

Yar, a new leaf.

I dunno, I feel real free, up there in that high blue sky.

Well... if I stay on topic this feels a lot more formal, but perhaps I can do so.


Don't worry, ya? I just don't want anything getting too out of hand, ya?

First: Huey Lewis is great, and if I ever get to see him in concert I will seize the opportunity. And I hate 95% of new music now and in the past 10 years or so. 4.5% of it I find boring, leaving me with no incentive to listen to newer music. Wanna change my mind? Be my guest, but it's an uphill struggle.


I don't listen to the radio. If I find a song that I like, it's by chance, and I'll go get it somehow. Listening to the radio just causes my ears to bleed with the terrible poppy "music" and just as bad rap. I actually think Christian music has more diverse themes in their songs than Rap. And that's pretty damn hard to beat.

Second: looks like I persuaded Roku to persuade people of Guardian Heroes' worth. Now I have to play through it again so as to better review it.

Third: I started playing a bit of Shadowrun today. Let me say: I have never lost so many fights in the first half hour as I have in this game. The combat system is Zelda-ish with the caveat that my character is hellaciously weak. Death just gets me revived in a hospital though, with some (not that much, really) money lost. There are 'shadowruns' I can accomplish via speaking to a guy in a sleazy bar, and these net me money. If I can avoid combat enough, I just might be able to upgrade my gun and/or armor. Combat, incidentally, earns me NOTHING. Which is fine when I suck so mightily at it.


Ouch. That reminds me of The 7th Saga. I never died so many times before in my life, just trying to leave the first area. I guess at least when you die in Shadowrun, there's really no penalty, but in 7th Saga, it managed to break my controller. I uh...swear that that had nothing to do with me. ^^;

Fourth: I wasn't happy to have FINISHED Sakura Wars 2, necessarily, so much as I was happy to have played through it. There are eight endings to obtain, and I can see myself getting all of them because I have a lot of fun. It is slightly odd that only Orihime has a pronounced accent when many other characters are non-Japanese; but Iris is still a kid - children don't develop accents if they learn a language when young, Maria is half Japanese and half Russian, Leni is German but apparently a product of some German program to create super fighting machines in the Great War (blame the Germans again...), and Kohran moved to Japan from China early in her life. And my save file allows me to get both Leni's and Sakura's endings without playing through the entire game again, so I'll be doing those shortly.

Fifth: depending upon the order you answer this in, you may or may not have done some searching on my behalf regarding Sakura Wars 2. I still need a comprehensive translation if you can find one, but if you can find some music from the game also, I will be most gruntled. MIDI doesn't really work for vocal material, either. I SHOULD be buying the albums off eBay or something, but they can be hard to find.


This actually pains me to say this, but...I found nothing. NOTHING. Even, where I usually buy my OSTs, had nothing. Sheesh. That's really disappointing. Urgh, I am defeated. ;_;

Sixth: thanks for the recommendation regarding Grandia. It's coming up in my play schedule...


Well, good! I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Seventh: Do you REALLY want to hear me talk about FF, when the most recent installment I have played was IX, and that wasn't on my own system? I'll just ask this: if FFIV and VI don't need sequels, does VII?


I don't think any of the FF games have needed sequels. Maybe FFX. Everything else has been wrapped up nicely. And when I mean "on topic," I really just mean RPGs. I mean, providing an opinion on the current discussion is good too, but not required or anything. :P

Eighth and final: are all non-RPGs now banned from mention?


No, but remember, this is an RPG site, so at least keep the majority of discussion here about that. I don't mind going off topic a little bit, just as long as we don't get into extremes.

Mom... my nuts?


Also, hooray for Overdrawn at the Memory Bank! I'm watching Catalina Caper now. ^^

Hm...why don't we cover this?

Hey I was just looking in yuo xbox 360 games section and i dont know if u guys only do released games but if u do previews you guys should check out a game calles Two Worlds its supposta be coming out for 360 and PC i dunno if u guys have already seen it or not but just lettin ya know thanx for readin -Dave


Ah, you mean this game. I honestly don't know why we don't have anything up yet, although from reading the previews from other sites, it doesn't seem like they know too much, just merely some assumptions that have been stated by the company, and a few action clips to back them up. The game is still heavily in development (it was delayed...), but we'll probably have coverage as the game nears. Thanks for the update!

Wondering what the consequences will be...

I'll keep this short and to the point....I like the battle system in FFXII just fine, the graphics are GREAT and the story is just missing. I've played the game now for around 50 hours or so (took time off from work to play it) and I loved stealing and leveling and exploring but I was getting tired of it for some reason as well. That's when it hit me that it just didn't have much story it it, and I don't mean that it's lacking a story it's just that the characters don't seem to interact much other then to say something unimportant and then your off to the next area. The only time you see them talking to someone other then a random NPC is before and after a boss fight or when entering a new area. They seem to have made it so you could use any character for any job but they also took the personalities out with it. Who knows, maybe it's just my imagination but I just don't care what's going on. I stopped playing it for a bit and went back to .Hack G/'s got characters I think I can care about it way. Sorry if this is too long.


Well, the characters each do definitely have distinct personalities. And your description sorta fits for most RPGs out there. They usually follow the forumla "Kill stuff, talk to people, move to next area, kill stuff, talk to people, lather, rinse, repeat." You're always talking to random NPCs, anyway. In any game. I've noticed there's quite a bit of story going on, if the frequency of cutscenes is any indication.

I can understand how the battling can become tedious. However, recently, there was nothing more satisfying than finally learning Fira and heading back to the last dungeon I was in, and completely desstroying the room full of Jellies there. Ah...that was contentment at its finest!

This was just fine in length, by the way. Please write in again!


Now I don't plan to get a PS3 in the near future, but if I did, there is a major factor that would play into it. I've read a lot of things saying it will play PS2 games, but nothing about playing old PSX games. Do any of you know whether it will play both PSX and PS2, or only PS2? Thanks.

Fear not, the PS3 will play PSX games as well! Now you can go ahead and toss your old PSOne without worry! Hooray!

Also Ouro what is the name of that song you and your friend were dancing to that yiou posted in one of the collumns?
Arros Raikou

Ah...that was "Everytime We Touch," by Cascada. I can understand that you'd want to emulate me, but please have caution. Dancing as well as I do takes skill, and you may hurt yourself. :)

I wonít have a letter for you today, but if you put up a column, it will be the first time in a long time that you manage to do it all three days. I believe in you! Mostly cuz you usually fail on Saturday.

You actually agreed with me on the male/female question? Iím not quite sure what I think of that. Usually people just call me a pervert. Iím not denying it, but it is nice to get an honest answer. Pervert.

Yeah? Oh yeah? Well tough! I posted on Saturday since I finally had time! Midterms, professors conspiring against me with homework frequency, and ROTC stuff...October just sucked, plain and simple.

I'm not a pervert! I'm an admirer...yeah, that's it. An admirer! >_>;


As you can see below...there was some damage. Now, before you go getting irritated, here's how I calcluated it. In order to assure that everyone had a fair shot at attacking, the way it worked was that I added up the damage to everyone as if each person attacked by themselves. So, here's a scenario.

  • Player A is one Tile behind Player B. Player C is two tiles behind Player B.
  • Both Player A and Player C use Blind Rage.
  • If Player A or Player C had hit Player B first, then the other one would not have hit.
  • Instead, I determined how much damage Player A would do if he went first, and how much damage Player C would do if he went first.
  • Since they would both have done 2 damage each had they gone first, Player B is knocked back 4 tiles.

Hope that clears everything up.

Combat Log

Luca Phase:
Luca Blight charges up!

Slashlen falls to Tile 29.
Tabor falls to Tile 28.
PureLunatic falls to Tile 20.
JDX falls to Tile 41.
Draconn falls to Tile 31.
Arpijy falls to Tile 25.
Aurelius falls to Tile 30.
Leaper falls to Tile 25.

Movement Phase:
Leaper moves to Tile 26.
Slimey moves to Tile 26.
Draconn moves to Tile 37.
Slashlen moves to Tile 31.
PureLunatic moves to Tile 22.
JDX moves to Tile 43.
Aurelius moves to Tile 33.
Aylee moves to Tile 19.
Tabor moves to Tile 31.

Previous THONG Rounds!

Selections for characters can be found at the following sites:

Suikoden Characters

Suikoden 2 Characters

Click here for the rules and lists of items and prizes!

Click here to see previous trivia!

Luca Blight


Answer to #L26: D. -1
This was a derivation of Euler's equation. The neat thing about this equation (ei*pi + 1 = 0) is that it ties together the 5 fundamental mathematical constants: e, i, 1, 0, and pi. It's been said that this is the most famous equation in the history of mathematics.

According to Saturos and Menardi, what two elements share a symbiotic relationship that will restore their Psynergy?

A. Fire and Water
B. Water and Wind
C. Earth and Wind
D. Fire and Earth
E. Wind and Fire
F. Water and Earth

THONG Question

Answer to #26:A. Legend of Legaia
Lapis was an annoying optional boss in the game, and the precious stone is called a Lapis, or also a Lapis Lazuli.

#27.Difficulty: Hard, Potch: 350 (You got 100 more potch the past two days because I goofed up).
How many books do you go through in the original Priness Crown?

A. 2
B. 3
C. 4
D. 5
E. 6


Whew, I'm beat. Managed to get in a full weekend finally...that October was rough. Everything just kinda hit me at once, so hope you all weren't too distraught with my repeated absences! Also, don't forget about the side contest I posted yesterday! Just take a look at the first letter in yesterday's column! Have a good week with Matt, and I'll see you on Saturday!
***Josh will probably play games all night.

Current Max Level: 30 (Ashe)
Current Time: 25:40:12

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After the gym today and PT, I need a nice, long, relaxing time with my PS2...


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RPGs I'm currently playing:

1. Final Fantasy XII!

2. Radiata Stories

3. Okami

THONG Players:

1. Roku
Flik  TP: 2

2. Bainick
Hero 2  TP: 13

3. Leaper
Antonio  TP: 17

4. Macstorm
Mazus  TP: 1

6. BLG
Sid  TP: 10

7. Arros Raikou
Kage  TP: 9

8. Xlash
Gijimu  TP: 0

9. Donovan
Clive  TP: 2

10. Slimey
Gadget  TP: 10

11. Bucket
Millie  TP: 15

12. Draconn
Mondo  TP: 15

13. Genjuu
Pesmerga  TP: 3

14. Alan Tse
Hoi  TP: 9

15. TheBluick
Fu Su Lu  TP: 0

16. Gouden Draak
Rubi  TP: 1

17. Slashlen
Lorelai  TP: 23

18. JuMeSyn
Odessa  TP: 11

19. PureLunatic
Viktor  TP: 18

21. William.T
Killey  TP: 0

22. Arpijy
Hix2  TP: 5

23. Spiffyness
Badeaux  TP: 2

24. Reivax
Kasim  TP: 1

25. Carabbit
Viki  TP: 7

26. Vicissitude
Clive2  TP: 4

27. JDX
Kuromimi  TP: 23

28. Kupomogli
Kinnison  TP: 7

29. Aurelius
Kahn  TP: 10

30. Omm
Yoshino  TP: 2

31. Aylee
Luc  TP: 9

32. Tabor
Ted  TP: 5

33. TvsAdam
McDohl  TP: 2

34. Sundoulos
Hai Yo  TP: 15

Anyone else?

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