The Oracle  

  You Lose! Perfect!  


Brad Lohr, The Oracle - June 4 '00

I seeeee you... hi! Anyway, where were we.. oh yes. Hello there, and welcome to the Sunday issue of "Brad Gets Chewed out, makes funny response" .. this week we showcase people who write in and are just .. dumb. Er.. anyway.

We've got some fun stuff today.. and it's even up fairly early. Goog should be happy. :)

I really am out of things to say now :(

Bad thing, from a guy who hasta write a column.. doh!

Ask a REAL question.

Ask Gramblebang
Go on, DO IT

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Brad Now Playing:
Asheron's Call
I'm the random drop master. No, really.
In Brad's Head:
Last night, like 9 motes, 2 keys, and a small shard.
Dude, Heather is so jealous.
Course, we got HER shadow panties first. :P
But she's a good kid, she deserves 'em..
Question and Answer
ARGH! (..hello)

Do you realize that I still have to wait till june 6 till I can buy Vagrant Story here in QuŽbec, Canada because of a new stupid law that says that the instruction manual must be translated in french before the game is released?!? I really hope that it wont discourage game producers to release games here in the future!

And I have a question, do you and google hate each other or are you just showing off?

have a good weekend

The Bloody Maniac

Well, #1, that is a stupid law. I guess it almost makes sense. (almost). At least going from English to French is a lot easier than say.. going from Japanese to English. I mean, they come from Latin, the both.. so the translations are at least somewhat easier, and somewhat decent. Anyhow, about Goog and myself.. it's all just for dramatic purposes. Kinda like the whole Three Stooges thing, 'cept there's only two of us. We get along just fine, (RPGamer staff who continually have problem with one another are... not long on staff, teamwork is a very big part of maintaining a webpage.), and any animosity you see between us is just for the entertainment purposes of the readers.. though Goog can get a bit pissy if I pull a stunt like the Gramblebang thing, and then nobody sends in REAL questions. But that's not MY fault, now is it. :P

Well, I may have answered it before.. but.. (sigh)
Hey *insert witty comment* Oracle,

Since you're a big fan of Asheron's Call, could you do me an eensy-weensy favor? Nope? Okay, thanks anyways.


Kidding.....even though that would've been mildly funny. What, in your opinion, makes AC better than Everquest? I was wanting to purchase one of them, and I'd like to know what makes AC cooler. Help me out, and I promise Brunhilda over here won't place a wart on you in the most unsavory of locations. Thank ye.

--Father "Bags!" Rahl

Well, the first thing that makes AC cooler than EQ is well, me. I play on AC. I don't play EQ. If you wanna hang out with me and my friends on AC, there's always an open invitation to the readers of my column, as long as you don't do -really- dumb stuff. Compared to some of the people we hang out with, to be doing dumber stuff than they are, you'd have to be nearly retarded. SO. Anyway, well, I've never actually played EQ, so I don't have too much insight, BUT. I do know what other people have said:

  • Money: In EQ, you start out with crap, and have to work for like 6 years to buy your first non-rusty sword. What a pain in the ass. Not only that, but when you buy your dented Full Helm for 1500 copper, the store buys it back for like 4. Doh. This is a huge complaint about EQ.
  • Camping: While a problem still in Asheron's Call, EQ has this like nothing else. You want that cool item that _____ drops? Well, sorry homey.. there's 30 guys waiting right on top of where _____ shows up, and they're -gauranteed- to be able to kill it faster than you are. So you gotta wait until they go to bed.

    But they don't sleep, they just nap between spawn times.

  • Allegiance System: AC has this neat Allegiance system which actually promotes the helping of other players. You swear allegiance to a guy, and he earns a bonus bit of experience based on how much you earn, (you do not lose -any- of it. What he's supposed to do is help you through the game. You die in a place, and there's 30 guys standing right on top of a corpse carrying your beauty helm of the ages? Well, that's the time to call for help, and that guy's supposed to help ya out. My patron's a great guy, he's unloaded way too much very nice stuff on me, and is always helpin' me out.
Anyway, that's just a few things I could think of right off the top of my head. EQ is by no means a bad game.. but I've heard a lot of people say that AC is quite a bit better. If anyone here is starting the game, and wants to hang out for a lil' bit, drop me an emial (, and we'll hook it up.

Tactics Ogre.. oh wait..

Was wondering about strategy RPGs. I've never played one, although I've known of they're existence since I've been playing video games. Anyway, I'm considering trying one, but I'm not sure. Is there a complete lack of story line? Or secrets? Is basically the entire thing just a chess game? I'm always hearing about the Ogre games and how great they are and how great FF Tactics is. I'm still not sure. As a big Ogre fan I'm hoping you can give me the lowdown.


Well, I'll respond with answering these questions from an FFT/TO point of view.

FFT and TO both have plenty of 'secrets'. In fact, TO has more than any other game I can rightly think of at this time.. save for possibly Metroid games. And anytime you hide a BOSS behind a secret wall, you know you've got a game with a lotta secret hidden stuff. :P Anyhow, it's not like chess, in that all the 'pieces' can move with different movements, but you've got terrain, and the 'pieces' are dynamic. They have personalities, and they can change abilities and usefulnesses. Not only that, but you only get 5 or 10, as compared to the 16 on a chess board. Storylines in TacRPGs are still quite existant.. but the story revolves around the fights that you get in. Why you get in them, how you get out of them, etc.

Aloser... isn't.. a loser.
Hi Brad,

First, to the guy wondering about mod chips burining out PSX's -- I've had mine for about 3 years and nothing bad has happened yet.

Secondly, Brad do you know (or find out) if Front Mission 3 and Vagrant Story are U.S. mod protected? I know Capcom is doing it to all there games since Dino Crisis so i think Square might be doing it too.

And last but not least, I just rented Tactics Ogre, what are character classes would you recommend? I just started chapter 2 and I keep getting my bum whipped by Aloser :(


Well, first: FM3 for sure isn't, (thanks, Mike), and we're pretty sure that VS isn't as well. As for Aloser, she's mean. She hits really hard, and evades like a _____ :|. What I usually do is end up trapping her in a corner somewhere, (between a wall and a barrel and another wall), and then she really only has one or two targets.. so I move everyone but who's trapping her out of the way, and just lay the heal down on the guy getting shot, while my other chars go and kill everyone else.. then you just have her to worry about, and it's a bit easier. By the way, one of the clerics in that battle drops a nice lil' spell for ya, so make sure to nail her and get it. :)

Unanswered Questions and Comments
I haven't played it either.. but I do own it!
I have a question about one of the best, most unappreciated RPGs there is: Jade Cocoon. I dont remember ever seeing a question about it in the coloumn, and I love it so much, so here goes. After you have beaten the game, you arrive in the Eternal Corridor where you can capture and merge minions forever. I just wanted to know if there was an ultimate point to this dungeon. Is there a secret minion at the end? And is there any way to save after you go down so far? (Ive been down at least 30 levels and had to start all over when i died)
I'm in a nice mood today.
Dear Brad,

Bah you guys never post my letters... well this is a day late... this is about the letter from MagusAkaAlex about Super Robot Wars F Final I've played some of the Super Robot wars, the first few are on SNES, this one is on the PSX it's in jap, what they do it mesh ALL of Gundam, from Amuro and the Eternal Capt Bright, Heero and Char, and Eva. It mixes everything into one story line... i havent played it but i've read the walkthrough and it's incredibly odd for the people who've seen ALL of gundam, Gundam Wing, and Eva. something Google should check out.. well here's hoping you post my letter. PLEASE?


Uh oh... he's steamed now!
After reading that the holly pendant can double infinity times, I took Xenogears off its pedestal and placed it into the holy thing that is my shrine to the muses, my playstation. (errg spending to long playing online RPGs Not enough vagrant story) well I popped the holy pendant on Fei. [Xenogears, knows all deathblows level 85 (spend to much time in that never ending desert looking for the darn sword the captain talks about)] well to make a long story short. Fought Deus thinking that since Xenogears always goes into infinity mode after the third attack could do lots of damage. But thinking I would have 6 attacks I only had 3. Am I doing something wrong or is someone dreaming.

Templar Kefka

I have... no clue. :)
Dear Brad,

A friend of mine and I were playing Castlevania: Symphony of the Night for like the millionth time, and for the millionth time we asked ourselves a quiestion about an item in the game. For a long time now we've been meaning to write in on that subject, but only now have we got off our lazy butts for this older game.

Brad, what exactly are the Secret Boots (1st castle, behind waterfall in Underground Caverns) supposed to do? How do I use them, and what do they actually do for my character? I know it's an older game, but it'd make my game much better. Please look into this and get back to me on this, I appreciate your time and efforts.


It's been a long time since I played this most excellent game.. I might be able to tell if I played again.. but yikes. I donno.

Wheee, Far East info
In reply to Megane for Far East of Eden Zero:

Info on the game is pretty scarce. There are no known FAQs on the game, and there are certainly no english websites that I've seen pertaining to it either. From what I can tell you...

1) The game is the only SNES game 40mbit in size. Rumors flew around saying it was 72mbit, but that's entirely not true. For Techies, it's impossible because the maximum SNES cart size is 48mbits, and if the game contains that freaking chip Super Mario RPG contains (why does the name of it evade my mind?), it can go to 64 max.

2) It has an internal clock and calendar. In the beginning, you set the date on the calendar and the time of day (military style) in the real world. Depending on the time, I hear word that different events can pop up. Like on a Sunday or something, a festival may appear in a certain town. UNfortunately, it doesn't go dark during the night (yes, 24 hour long days of light). If it's a holiday, it'll immediately tell you what holiday it is upon turning the power on.

3) It's a spinoff to the Far East of Eden (Tengai Makyou) series which I think originated from the PC-engine.

4) It is EXTREMELY hard to play if you can't read Japanese. I'm not a dialogue reader, and since there are no known english FAQs, I've only gotten out of the first town and can't seem to figure out what to do next. Keep note that there a number of places to go immediately after leaving it, so...

5) The battle system is a typical ho-hum turn based system. It kind of reminds me of Dragon Quest's, but the characters appear and crap.

Whether you think it's worth it or not is up to you. Since I can't get anywhere, it seems like 'just another RPG' to me. The internal clock is a neat idea, but I can't find any game use of it at this point.

Frankly, I don't see what all the hype is about this game in the EMU community, namely ROM Hacking... it just seems so average with the exception of you know what.

Answer to the Suikoden Questions I -didn't- answer yesterday.
Hey I'm wrighting in to answer The Great Cornholio's question about Suikoden. Window can probibly be found in the warriors village in one of the shops. Crowly is hidden in the cave behind qlon like Brad said. One of the southern walls in the deeper part of the cave is fake, if you walk through it, you'll bump around in the dark for a while, and then you should come to a little room where he's just standing around. For Leon, you just need to have him mension something about Mathiu, and then run to Mathiu who will give you a note. Unfortunatly, if you're still missing some stars by the time you're sieging Gregminster, it's too late to get the best ending. You need to have all the stars before you talk to Mathiu about going to Gregminster.


Is he dreamin', folks?
Dear Brad (who must sometimes get tired of "Lohracle", etc),

I'm almost sure that a few days ago I saw a procedure for getting a thirteenth Old Book in Suikoden II. It involved selecting one of the other books and pressing some button combination. Trouble is, I don't remember what the combination is or where I read it and I can't find it again anywhere.

My dreams are occasionally very high-concept, so I *might* have dreamed about Suikoden tips and tricks. But I want to believe that it's true. Please, tell me it's true!


Woohoo! Honorary Queer!
*Laughs* What is a faget? Is that French or something?

Vagrant was partially right about haiku, though. The traditional form is 'sposed to be about the scenery, but all art forms evolve over time. If he's studied Japanese American culture at all, he'd know that on the walls of the pacific coast immigration posts, through which the first Japanese people passed, are hundreds of haiku about this new land. It was one of the first evolutions of the art form, which has continued to grow and evolve since.

I believe our good friend is living in the 1700s if he thinks haiku has to stagnate for eternity, and in the 1950s if he thinks it's an insult to be gay. On behalf of the gay community, O Lohracle, I bestow upon you the great title of honorary queer. You may now dance with perfect rythym and decorate with impeccable taste while still retaining the "straight" status. ~.^

Always a fan,


Oddly enough, I've been accused, because of my stance on gay rights, and other things, of being a "staunch" liberal or something.. heh. Not true in any way. I am a Braditarian, and my views most commonly follow that of the moderate status. By the way, the 'faget' word sounds like a breakfast food :) And I still can't decorate with taste. I just tried. :( ... "You Lose! Perfect!"


I got Brandi Chastain too. Don't you just love chicks that will take their shirts off.


Brad: Well, when you put it that way... :D

Enemy Warlock casts Hurtmore!

Thou art hit for 68 hit points!

Thou art dead.

Brad: .... :(

Ha! Nobody got my man, who was...Ricky Martin! Not bad, IMHO.

Too bad I can't dance. ^_^

~Saille Orinda

PS: Er...hi all. First time poster (speaker..?) here, but old-time follower ^_^. So much for introductions.

Brad: You're much more likely to get Ricky Martin on the celebrity_men_for_men.jsp page ;)

OK i know I'm a little late on this test taking thing, but I got Brad Pitt! Anyway, everyone should watch Blade Runner tomorrow, especially you Brad!!! It's one of the best movies!!!

Brad: I actually don't have TV channels sufficient enough to watch Bladerunner in the suggested medium, but I've actually seen the movie. :) Now I did happen to see the first bit of Interview with a Vampire, which is a very good movie. And a good series of books, too.

Oh see now you gone done and bashed Japan. I'm tired of writing fifty page flames to people though, so let's just say I disagree. STRONGLY. Since Japan is so much better then America. And nothing about their country is bad, even the things that I think you CONSIDER are bad. I'm happy with it. They're happy with it. America is just fucked up big time. And I hate to say this, but I consider MOST American women butch, compared to Japanese chicas. Bah. The end.


Brad: Heh, the high incest/rape rate, the high suicide rate, those aren't problems at all! Heh, my friend Alex and I were talking about this kinda stuff, he says that Japan has its own share of little problems, and I don't really think an American kid who has maybe visited once or twice can make a good objective opinion about comparitive lifestyles. :P And if you think most American women are butch, I should introduce you to an exg/f of mine... she's got fem DOWN. Hi Sus! :P .. as a side note, the guy wrote me another letter later saying he was boycotting my column now, because of my biased American views. This coming from a guy with an email address of Oh puH-Lease! </valleygirl>

I take no responsibility on the actions of RPGamers who may or may not be malicious in the use of the information provided above. </disclaimer>

Oh, you say you're bored, young man? Well, I've got something for you to do! There are windows that need washing, toilets that need scrubbing, and a houseful of laundry just waiting to be cleaned and folded! Do you think I'm having fun, young man? Of course I'm not having fun! So if you have so much time on your hands, why don't you just pry yourself off that darned computer and help me so I can have a little fun for a change!

-Your Mother

Brad: Clean yer own damn house, mom, I don't live there anymore. :)

Monkey monkey monkey! EEE HEE HEE HEE HEE HAA HA HA HA HAAA! Monkey monkey!


Brad: Malkovich malkovich? Malkovich! MALKOVICH MALKOVICH MALKOVICH! .. malkovich.

Good lord... what's that on your head?!? *faint*

"The Bored One," ChRoNoDiN

Brad: It's your HEAD. Stop picking at it.. it'll only make it WORSE.

the statue got me high.


Brad: Dig my grave!

I got matched with Richard I a horrible person?


Brad: Yes :(

I have an IQ of 128!! (according to emode...)

- The (working on it) Mad Scientist

Brad: Heh, you don't WANT to know what mine comes out to. :P

Ha! Made you look!

Brad: ... grrrr...

Well, I think Thor would have categorized this Vagrant as "Unfit for print"-- remember those? Thor had Shawners and now you have The Vagrant. Groovy! You have now matched Thorian heights. Here's a Thor quote for ya':

"Insults are the last line of defense from someone who knows they're wrong and the first line of defense from an unintelligent, small minded person."

--Q&A Historian

Brad: Heh... that's the reason I printed that letter.. when you result to name-calling, you already know you can't win logically, so you just hafta shoot off to try and make yourself feel better. And my response was very thor-ish as well. What can I say, I've been doing this stuff as long as he has ;)

Blinky Heather has nice shoes, where do blinky cartoons get shoes like that?

-Vicks Eddington

Brad: From the looks of them, she got 'em from a Mega-Man game. :)

Wrapping it up...

Alrighty then.. there's the weekend.. we have a surprise for you next Friday. I'll be taking the day off, so I can play more video games.. and instead, well, a mystery host will take my place. So I'll be doing Sat/Sun of next week, but you guys get someone else for Friday. It'll be fun.. but anyway, I'm outta.

Brad "Hunger Overwhelming!" Lohr