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Andrew - April '26- 12:00 Central Standard Time

Yeah, so I was a little rant-tastic last time. Just feel grateful that E3 hasnít hit yet. When it does, these columns are going to be mainly l33t-speak gibberish.

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There are no words.

I was holding off on emailing in my RPG crush, because I thought for sure every girl and their grandmother would mention him... how disappointed I am with these people. Well, quite simply, this guy HAS to be posted, otherwise the world is a much more evil place than I ever suspected. I don't care that this'll be a week late, this man is more sexy than every other male character in the history of video games combined, so he deserves to be mentioned.

One word: SEPHIROTH.

That man is sex personified. I know straight men who think he's sexy. And straight women like myself? RAWR. How can we NOT go for a guy with long bishonen hair and the build of a god? AND he wears leather! Someone fan me off, please. ^_^

Add to that a wicked charm, the confidence to carry himself well, and that whole, "I'm a cold bastard but underneath I'm really hurting" thing shown in the Nibelheim flashback, and you have a character that will be sending fangirls into spasms of joy for years to come.

Only drawback I can see? The whole insanity thing might be a slight problem to overcome... but hey, in a relationship, you make compromises, right?

So, in conclusion, not only would I save the world for Sephiroth, I would also then turn around, rip out its core, destroy it, wrap it up in a bow and present it to him as a Valentine's Day present. After all, he deserves it. ^_^

Usagi Vindaloo

Andrew:
The best part is, when his Mother comes to visit, she comes in a jar! ^_^

 
Naughty swordplay.

I suppose it's getting a bit late to comment on the whole "save-the-world-for-this-one" or whatever one might call the topic, but during the whole thing I realized that I forgot to bring up a personal favorite: Chris from Suikoden III.

I don't know about everyone else, but a pretty young woman whose a tough-ass knight AND has silver hair AND is damn cute basically has me at first sight.

Andrew:
You should look into books by Tamora Pierce, itís all she writes about. Really tough girls who fight their way through the system and end up kicking everyoneís ass. *swoon*

 
And they say dogs are stupid.

Hey there,

I can identify with Google's cat problems. My cat, Huang Mao, broke yet another foot (this is the third one, just one to go!). The vet gave us his informed medical diagnosis, "your cat is stupid." This is true. As soon as he got home from the vet, he started running around and playing like he didn't have a broken front foot. Sure enough, he reinjured it, it swelled up very large, and we had to lock him in a cage until he healed. And he's only 8 months old. I shudder for the future.

Anyway, I'm probably not asking a very original RPG question, but I have not searched the entire Q&A archives, neither have I played all the RPGs out there. In the vast majority of RPGs I have played, I notice that in the official artwork and/or FMV cutscenes, that the characters look, well, very white. I understand that Japanese companies may be trying to appeal to the broadest market possible, but it just seems that the characters appear very "northern-european," "anglo-saxon," or any race-related term you may choose. Of course, there are exceptions, in that the mutant, robot, monster and giant animal characters are not human, so they don't look much like humans. But the humanoid characters seem very stock. I can count black characters on one hand, and asian characters on the other. Even people who come from very decidedly ethnic backgrounds (think Yuffie from Wutai) look fairly neutral. How about some real ethnic differences on a wider scale? It doesn't make any difference to gameplay, but could give the world a more...world-like feel. It would be fun to go to the ancient Japanese or Chinese style village, and have it populated by Japanese or Chinese villagers (Would you rike to buy a rittle potion?) Besides, whenever in America, I'm constantly surrounded by white people and ferocious monsters, so I look for some kind of escape in my RPGs.

Ke Da-Wei

The evil Taiwanese Bushiban Teacher

Andrew:
1. And thus, the audience learns the true horrors of purchasing pure-breed, thousand dollar cats.

2. The answer most game designers will give you is that they want to appeal to their main audience, which happens to be pasty white boys. Iíll agree that this is stupid, and though your Chinese villager comment will earn me hundreds of flames for printing, I to, would like to see more variety in RPGs concerning people, especially when the protagonist travels around the world. And if youíre looking for an escape from white people and monsters, Iím afraid that there isnít one in the world of video games. That is, unless you decide to make your own.

 
So Iím a hypocrite.

OMG! Nintendo is letting Retro make Metroid in 3D!? They totally ruined teh series! No no no! This is horrible and the game will SUCK and I'll never buy it! I hate you, Nintendo, and I"m going to boycott all your games until you make Metroid in 2D again because 3D Metroid is going to suck!!!!!111

Wait, we're when and where, now?
-Kupan

Andrew:
Metroid Prime DID ruin the whole series. Was it a good game? Yes. Was it a bold step in a new direction? Yes. Did it completely destroy most of the series trademarks? You betcha. Metroid Prime took the original series ideas of light horror, platforming, and an innovative main character, and replaced them by ramping up the horror/fright level to annoying, completely got rid of the platforming, and replaced happy go lucky Samus with Samus the first person shooter. Do I applaud a brave little start-up company for doing what they did? Yes, but that doesnít mean I didnít play the Game Boy Advance Metroid far more then the GameCube one.

 
Why new things are b4d!

Okay, so Konami wants to make Castlevania 3-D. What's so wrong with a leap of faith every now and again?

Now I can already hear the screams of agony as people recall the last third dimensional forray into the world of Castlevania, but this one is being produced by the man who helped make Castlevania the huge success that it is today, Koji Igarashi. That alone should tell you something, after his deft hand creating some of the best Castlevania's ever (among them, of course, Symphony of the Night). He's a good guy who obviously loves the franchise, but maybe he doesn't wanna keep doing the same thing. It's always good to broaden your horizons.

And hey, if it sucks, you can beat me with shoes for every hour you wasted playing it.

Though from what Igarashi-san was saying, it might just be Devil May Castlevania....

Andrew:
Look, I want the series to branch out, but I wanted it to branch out in ways that fixed the problems the series already had and added cool new touches. Ever since Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, the series has been lacking something. Call it style, call it hundreds of wacky little secrets, but the series hasnít found salvation on the GBA. Maybe this new Castlevania will be a great game, but it isnít the game I wanted. The game I wanted included multiple characters, shops that didnít suck, maybe, and dare I say, a town with NPCs? Perhaps more then one stupid reason to spend my days wandering around a castle thatís out to kill me? IS THAT TOO MUCH TO ASK, KONAMI? IS IT?!

 
Someone hand me a pitchfork and a torch!

WHY OH WHY KONAMI!? *WAAAAH*

Is it too much to ask for a 3D rendered graphics, that would be most utterly breathtaking, while making it a traditional 2d side scroller? Stacked with a symphony that tickles the ear and indulges the mind in depth of thought? I wanted Symphony of the Night 2, but noooooo. They must dangle a steak in front of us, only for it to be pulled away and mutalated. Damn them.

*shakes fist*

-Chris

Andrew:
Like yourself, I would have been fine if they had mentioned that the game was going to be 3D to start off with, instead of attempting to lure interest only to reveal that yes, they do hate their fans.

 
Dance Dance Apocalypse!

It seems that everybody is forgetting about FF8's dirty magazine (despite all the hating about this game, I still like it!). And you can get it traded for a Shiva card or sell for some gil, but I prefer the Shiva deal! Sweet, since Shiva is oh so hot! Come on, Shiva is a like a porn star, getting more naked as FFs go by! FFX's is one big tease! "Hey Shiva lady I got some bucks for ya!" That's about it!

Quicksand of Shadows - Live From Brazil!

Shiva:
Look kid, I donít know what theyíre telling you in South America, but Iím not a chick. In fact, Iím very comfortable in my manhood. So comfortable, that I wonít be DANCING THIS PLANET INTO OBLIVION THE NEXT TIME SQUARE PUTS ME IN ONE OF THEIR GAMES AS A LARGE BREASTED FEMALE.

 
Straight to you from the balmy beaches of the tropics!

You have had all the time in tech world to make fun of us over here in Iowa. For shame for not picking on us.

Anyway, I was wondering what game I should pick up. .hack//mutation looks appetizing, mostly because I liked the first, mostly. It is between that and, of course, the new Lufia and the new Castlevania game. I could probably pick up them all, but I only get $6/hr and have to drive/ride a bus for an hour just to get to and from work so trying to save that much would be a SMURFing lot of work.

I was also wondering that since you go to NIU, is your school also innundated with kids from the suburbs of Chicago? This is a bit of a rambler so feel free to chop it or mutilate it.

S.H. Silver-"You tried and you failed. The lesson is never try." (Tilde to whoever can get the quote)

Andrew:
Iowa...? Isnít that an island in the South Pacific?

1. Iím picking up Lufia first, if only to spite Konami. Join me on my vengeful quest!

2. Yeah, Iím from the suburbs myself. I picked the school mostly because I didnít care where I was going, and wanting to create video games for a living leaves you with very few options, especially considering my poor math skills and how I had no interest in spending large amounts of my life churning out awful games to get to the top.

...speaking of which, any company CEOís reading this right now that want to hire a hard working intern for the summer? ^_^;;

 
Outback marketing.

I writing in response to the guy who was wondering when Australia would get Xenosaga. Who cares about Xenosaga? I want .hack! I don't care if it turns out to be absolutely rubbish I still wanna decide for myself. It seems to be that unless an RPG causes a rather large crater in the US that they even consider it, and even when it does that doesn't give it a guarantee (they didn't even deem Chrono Trigger worthy). The last Kanomi game I played was Metal Gear Solid, so I don't really think I'm qualified to judge them. Although I DID like Tiny Toons for the Game boy (but by the looks of Castlevania they haven't moved on much)

When forced to pick an RPG crush, its got to be Rydia, its not an abusive thing, its the green hair. Have you ever noticed how in RPGs when there are female black mage's they are always the best looking? Lulu, Rydia, Nina (when she was a black mage) heck even Willow from Buffy, the only exception I can think of off hand is Bleu.

~Chocolate Teapot

Talking about Porn in RPGs have you ever noticed how in FFX cut scenes introducing female characters always pause in "compromising" places. The ones of Lulu and Rikku are the worst, though there was one camera angle outside Djose where I spend 10 minutes of dialogue with Captain Lucile's ass taking up a majority of the middle of the screen

Andrew:
1. I know importing is a pain, but I think itíd be easier then the Aussie way of waiting an extra year for the game you want to come out there.

2. Buh? 0_o

3. Bleu was a snake tailed hottie! Nagas forever!

4. I thought it was pretty funny, actually. I can just picture the staff for FFX telling the artists EXACTLY how they want to see Luluís battle ending animation. *slobber*



Quickies

No, tell the guy who found my wallet that it's not mine and he should send that one back. They found mine at church, after I spent hourslooking in the home depot parking lot. Go fig.

Rich bastards, with their ďwalletsĒ for storing ďmoneyĒ in. Now, whereíd I put me food stamps...

Your column reminds me of Strong Bad's e-mails.

*Wipes a tear* So precious...

It shouldnít, since Strong Badís emails are brilliant and clever, and Iím just angry and sarcastic.

You think you've seen scarey? You haven't felt fear until you've seen Quina x Brahne yuri.

O_O

FEAR!

What scares me is that youíve gone looking for such a horrible thing.

Wait. Quina is a chick?! 0_o

The Final Grumble:

your letter wasnít in todayís column, look for it tomorrow, unless you basically said that Konami sucks/rules, Iíve gotten a few dozen of those that wonít be printed.

Andrew "Feelin Fine" Duff

XO~~~~

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