Monkey on a String
The Oracle, Brad Lohr - February 27, 2000- 13:00 PST
Check it out.. I didn't lie to you. I'm here
and on time, today. Still not in XWindows yet.. if anyone has an idea about getting
an X server for an ATI AIW 128 (not pro, Rage 128 3d chipset), drop me a line,
I'll love you long time.
This could very well be a huge column. Since I'm using pine, I haven't really scrolled
all the way down my inbox listing to see how many mail messages I've gotten,
but if it isn't enough, I'll pop over to the Windows half and grab the 70 some-odd
that I didn't get to yesterday.. still can't get to those that were sent to me a bit
back, because those are stuck in Netscape mail under X.. I swear, I'm going
to get a REAL email program, one of these days.
Got Questions? Problems?
Ask my pet slime
A Googleshng approaches. Command?
The Old stuff
Brad Now Playing:
Final Fantasy Tactics
And oddly enough, sometimes both of them at the same time.. I beat Velius last night, yay!
In Brad's Head
Not much has been in my head recently...
Well, nothing I could print in a public forum, that is...
I WILL EAT YOUR CHILDREN
I've got three dollars on the long lost brother, do I hear four?
Whats up, I have a few questions to ask you...
leonitha-"long lost brother for sale"
- Ive heard that FF Tactics is almost extremly scarce at this point, and I was planning to buy it, is this true??
- Do you know of any Square demo (like legend of mana or crono cross) that might be coming with any other square game anytime soon?
- Whats your 2 cents on Star Ocean 2: Second story? (been planning on buying it but not sure if its worth it)
- By the way that long lost brother thing is for real, its true why wont anyone believe anything I say.
I actually don't have any long lost brothers.. I have a couple of weird people who email me and try to pretend to be so, though.. heh heh.
As for FFT being scarce, that's what I hear. That's a sad thing, but you can always pick stuff up in the used bins at different places.. I'm pretty sure you can find it if you really want to.. try looking on eBay, if all else fails. I don't know specifically of any demos that are coming out on recent games... heck, those games are coming out soon enough that they're pretty much in the next lineup, you'd think we have demos by now. As for Star Ocean2, well.. go get it. It's an awesome game, and if you like games with good replay value, this is a must for you. I dug that game, blew a good 2 months of my life playing it, and loved every minute of it. Sometime I'm going to go back to it, I swear! .. right after Brigandine... really!
There's an insane chocobo on your head!
Okay... how's the Oracle doing today, good? Good. Anyway, my question is
thus... You know how mean the enemies are in FF Tactics, and I was
wondering: What is the best party of adventurers to use in the Dorter
Slums? I know this is pretty early in the game, but I just want your
And I really do have a chocobo on my head... It says "Oracle must die".
Hmmm, I won't listen to it... much.
The Oracle is almost back in full shape.. once we get
everything working again, The Orcale will be in good shape. As for Dorter Slums, bring along a chemist,
or two, if you're the paranoia type. Make Delita and Algus both into Archers, if you can buy bows for them
at this point (can't remember if it is or not), otherwise, make 'em knights, and
let 'em smack around anything they can. Then you want to move everyone initially up that little pile of stuff
that's right next to your starting location, let one or two people go all the way to the top and cream that archer
up there.. then HOLD GROUND. This is one of the key elements to all of FFT. If you go charging into the enemy, you get
your butt kicked. Holding ground, letting the enemy come to you, is one of the big keys to doing well in the game.
Battles vs. enemy engineers, with those damned guns withstanding, of course. So you're on the hill, and holding ground. Hopefully
your archers can nail those damned wizards before they become too much of a nuisance, but have your fighters concentrate on creaming the knight, as he's
a pain in the butt, and then if they're bored, have your fighters slam the wizards a bit around. I like to kill the
wizards first if I know I'm going to win, because I like to let them drop crystals/treasures, becuase I generally
don't have wizards nor their equipment by that time in the game, (though you easily could.. I tend to let the
squires learn a lot (At least JP up, Move+1, Counter Tackle, Throw Rock, and more than likely Accumulate) before I move them
into the higher jobs.. but then, in this game, I really have been sticking to the basic jobs, I just made Ramza a ninja on the advice of one of my
readers from last time. Two Ninja Edges, Bracer, Twist Headband, and Power Sleeve... THWOCK! 360 damage to Weigraf, and he was down in one shot.. did
the same kinda damage to Velius too. :)
Help! My FFT has fallen, and it can't load up!
O' Brad on the hill,
My FFT cd has been damaged to where it freezes when I try to either
continue or start a new game and it's pissin' me off! I tried standard CD
cleansing shtuff, shaving cream, and even asking the cd to please work.
There hardly appears to be any scratches on the CD... any suggestions as
to how to fix my beloved piece of plastic?
- Jesse the Messy IV
I'm not much of a specialist on cleaning CDs, though several people have thought that they were, and written into columns of the past.. you can go search through them, if you like.. but I don't know. I actually did try the X-potion trick, and Ramza didn't use an Xpotion when Weigraf stuck it to him the first time.. so I decided to just take him out real quick, and I got REALLY lucky beating Veluis. Happy happy.
Perfect Works, explained!
I'm writting to answer your plea for a dedicated nut to explain
Digicube's perfect works series. I also recently acquired XG: The Perfect
Works, and this has caused me to do some research into the rest of the
Digicube line of books. As for 'Perfect Works' books in particular, there
are only a few--3 to be precise. Xenogears: The Perfect Works was the
first, being released on 10/8/98 for 3,500 yen (about $30... a LOT less
than I paid, unfortunately...). Then came Saga Frontier 2: The Perfect
Works, released on 7/15/99 and the most recent was Front Mission 3: The
Perfect Works which was released 11/19/99. These are the only Digicube
books to bear the Perfect Works name, but there are many more similar
books. For example, Final Fantasy: The Complete Works (a great series,
BTW, if you can ever find them and if you speak Japanese...) and several
others. All of the books with similar content as this for their
respective games bare a seires of Kanjis that go as follows (you need
Japanese decoding software to see these; if you don't have any, check out
[Insert Japanese Text here] (Sorry, my mail program botched on this -- Brad)
For those who do not speak Japanese, that is pronounced:
Settei-Shiryou-Shuu. This translates roughly to "Established Data
Collection". It sounds a lot cooler in Japanese I guess...
Anyway, in addition to Digicube's Settei-Shiryou-Shuu books and their
line of guidebooks, they also have a series called the "Memorial Album"
series,of which I do not currently own any, but have had FF7: Memorial
Album back-ordered for about a month and a half now... :(. Anyway, the
Memorial Album books are essentially a more-or-less complete script of
the in-game text along with CG shots of what was happening at the time.
Finally, they also have a series of weirder books such as the "Chocobo
Racing Post Card Collection" (no joke... how could I make something like
that up?) and the "Final Fantasy Paper Craft Book". Of course, these are
next to impossible to find in America, but such is life.
I'm sure that was more info than anyone but me could have possibly been
interested in. ;)
-Eric Reichel, who has just as much fun reading Japanese books about Square games as playing them.
Don't have much to say about that.. there you go, whomever was interested.
An 8-bit love song..
Dear "Thundara Maker" Lohr,
'Back in the day' of gameplay first,
A work of mine.
When balloons and aliens there were to burst,
Where Link and Samus got a start,
And every 'game nerd' lost their heart,
To a system at its best,
Behold the gloried NES.
Its graphics are lines of blocks,
Easily made shapes, such as dots,
Its sound is like nothing heard before,
Something like wind through a door,
Its casing is small and sleek,
The first type, the second is weak,
Loading games is like a dream,
Insert, push down, pound and scream,
The feeling of my first win,
Put in my mind a small grin,
Shootin' down those angry ducks,
Falling earthbound with muffled 'uhuk's,
Beating robots of the land,
With 'Blue Bomber' Megaman,
Dodging barrels of the Kong,
In rhythm to its 8-bit song,
Bowsers of the land await,
For Mario in castles 1-8,
'Twould be wrong without the slime,
In DQ it'd be a crime,
Another game is Crystalis,
This ARPG is wrong to miss,
From Leaf to the tower in the sky,
Here's a game you've gotsta try,
Dare we mention famed Metroid,
That without there'd be a void?,
Samus, that nimble girl,
Cool enough to save a world,
Link, Zelda, Gannon, Fairy,
Hero, girl, villain, hairy,
Princess T and little Toad,
Need more games to cross the road,
That underplayed Shadowgate,
Trying to open that next grate,
Another great, Faxanadu,
You mayn't even have a clue,
About the game which I speak,
Check around, it's worth a peek,
"I'd like to buy some gum",
Said Alex of River City Ransom,
An ARPG of the modern kind,
A 'better this game you find'.
There are many hundreds more,
For you people to explore,
Buy a deck and a few games,
Trust me, you won't be ashamed,
For you'll find hours of fun,
For a system that's had to run,
You may think me just a lamer,
"Screw you" then, from an 8-bit gamer.
-EE "Love: If I'm blind, who's cheating me out of disability
That's just.. neat :)
FFT Fun things to do!
Here's a letter, just like you asked. I'm not a regular contributor, but I
like your site.
I guess I'll open with a few fun FFT things .. I'm really obsessed with the
game too and I really wish Square would make a sequel.
Fun things to do in FFT:
Give battle skill to archers and people with guns. Do long range speed
breaks. By the time the enemy reaches you, you should be able to get in
three or four turns before they can get even one. It helps to do something
like giving a monks the equip gun ability because strength is tied into
break success rate.
In battles against gafgarion, continously try stealing his sword.
Eventually it will work and he'll be rendered helpless (he can only punch
for like 10 pts of damage)
Make a party of all females, except the necessary males like Ramza.
Make them all dancers. Give them all sunken state as a reaction ability.
Now, have everyone start "wiznaibus". Use Ramza to do weak attacks against
all of them until they turn invisible. Then get ramza invisible by taking a
hit and surviving.
Now you can just sit there and win using only the 'wait' command. It's a
pretty corny way to beat enemies.
Another trick along these lines is to hit an enemy with 'poison','haste',
and then make the party invisible.
My ultimate death squad: Wizards with math skill as a secondary ability,
one mediator (mustadio, so you can snipe), and one knight with two swords
ability, excalibur, and a chaos blade (Beowulf with battle skill as a
secondary). Have the mediator
hit everyone with brave up stuff. The knight should do something useful
(like beowulf hitting a wizard with pray faith). The wizards should focus
on CT4PrayFaith to get all enemies and allies faithed. From there you can
pretty much wipe out everyone in one turn.
Having trouble landing a good summon spell like zodiac? get one party
member invisible (or equip them with setiemson) and cast the summon spell
on them. Then have them wander into the midst of the enemy, who ignores them.
Use two swords weapon breaks for a doubly high success rate in break
techniques. This also makes magic break useful, as each hit takes away 50%
of their mp.
Even speed break and power break become geniunely useful this way. It's a
good way to break everyone down so that you can poach them or steal money
In the battle against Ramza's brother, you can actually get him to
(Forget the name) and completely break his speed before he gets one attack
off. Then you can get his power and mind ratings broken too so that he
gets one turn for every fifty or so you do.
Try stealing every piece of genji equipment plus masamune off of (samurai
boss). They way I did it is using knights with two swords technique and
dancers doing the slow dance constantly. The success rate for stealing
his weapon is like 10%, it takes an absurdly long time to get everything.
To build up just ONE character's experience REALLY quickly, get into a
random battle in a relatively flat level. Let's say you want to bring
Cloud up to speed. Make everyone wizards with math skill, make sure cloud
and beowulf are in the party.
Kill all but one enemy. Break that enemy's speed (and strength if you
want) using two-sword break techniques from beowulf. Now have the
magicians hit everything on the screen with pray faith. Do this by luring
the enemy and placing everyone but Cloud on a flat plain. Then use height
(whatever) pray faith. It doesn't matter if cloud gets it. Use the same
command with sleep. This should put everyone to sleep including party
members. Cloud can then come down from his hill, and he should get ten
turns in a row by himself before anyone can do anything. Use ramza's guts
technique or a bard's cheer song to speed Cloud up. Keep putting the enemy
and everyone on the plain to sleep, and cloud can spend his ten turns using
'gil taking' on the enemy. This will not only make you gain experience
fast, you'll get rich enough to afford a zillion samurai swords (or whatever).
To build a party's experience fast, give them all the secondary ability
'basic skill', then use knights to kill every enemy but one. Then break
that enemy's speed down to one. Everyone can sit there and use accumulate
over and over until you get bored or max out the JP you need.
Another variation on this is to have everyone be a bard who uses cheer
song. You'll just see turn after turn of cheer song with exp and jp being
earned each turn, and the enemy will get a turn once every few hundred
Try beating the game with nothing but summoners. It's fun. Semi tough.
Ever notice that a lancer can't jump with something over his head? Nice touch.
I have a lot more like this, but I probably sound like a psycho already.
I'll wrap this up. Thanks for keeping rpgamer interesting.
Dude.. that's some really neat stuff. I knew a couple of those, but the rest are just awesome... the dual-break technique is going in my party next battle, I swear.. whee!
8-bit NES, revisited
Dear (Almighty Oracle) Brad,
Does anybody still own a regular nintendo(or 8-bit, as some call it)? Or the
original Final Fantasy? I still own mine, and they still work pretty good,
along with many other games. I still play them occasionally, and still have
fun. What about you?
I actually just bought an 8-bit NES, and the original Final Fantasy within this last month, but Kevin, one of my friends, still has (and plays) his original copy.