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The dawn of the week
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Blaaaaarg!

I suppose that someday I'll have to get used to the Monday thang, and stop complaining at the start of each new week... but I'm sure ya'll can sympathize. Mondays are icky, horribly disgusting days. And this Monday in particular bites quite hard: I've received very little mail. (There was no Sunday CoS, hence no Sunday "Ask Thor!" link, hence not much to work with.) So open up a can of Ask Thor Light, just don't be surprised if you're thirsty again in a few minutes.

Final Fantasy--really.

Hi Thor, (insert some blatantly kiss-up title here),

OK, how about "Lord of the Blarg"? Or "Niftyman"? Or "Stop printing letters with people who call you lofty names, you egotistical freak"?

I was wondering what your view is on ending the Final Fantasy series. Of all the RPG's I've ever played (And I've played a lot... Okay! So I don't own a Playstation! So sue me!) Anyway, it has the most innovative plot, new things per addition to the series, and it never gets old, even if the Draw Magic skill isn't worth (insert censored expletive). What would your reaction be if Square suddenly announced there would be no Final Fantasy IX? There is one in pre-development, but this is hypothetical.

-- Evan

My reaction? Disbelief. Square axing the Final Fantasy series is about as logical as Nintendo axing the Mario series. Total corporate suicide. Especially now that RPGs are finally gaining popularity among the masses (in America), and Final Fantasy is pretty much the only series Joe Blow knows. (That Joey, I tell ya. He sure doesn't know much.)

What I would like to see is the Final Fantasy series branch out. We'd have, oh, say, one group working on FMV packed, multi-million dollar, They-Said-It-Couldn't-Be-Done-In-A-Movie-And-They-Were-Right Final Fantasy games; and then another, smaller group, producing "SNES" style Final Fantasies. You know, heavy on the EXP gaining, all the old favorites (Magic points, treasure chests, etc.), and enough gameplay to knock out an adult mule for twenty minutes.

Sure, it's basicly inconceivable, but if I had told you Capcom was going to release a 3d Street Fighter game a few years ago, would you have believed me?

Zelda 64 Gossip

Hmm, while people are busy wondering pointless things like how Gerudos continue their lineage of one guy is born every 100 years, I had the priviledge of using... THE MASK OF TRUTH!!!! They put it in Zelda 64 for a reason! For example, use the mask on the Gossip Stones in front of the Temple of Time. One of them says that Gerudos sometimes come to Hyrule Castle Town to look for boyfriends. There! An answer to a silly question by the game designers themselves! (God, I need to get out more)

Indeed.

This question not intended for minors
(Warning: Contains strong language. Parental supervision is required.)

I know you've kindof already discussed this, but I just had to comment on how ludicrous the ESRB ratings are. I mean, take FF7, the game with the most swearing in any console RPG that I've seen in america. This isnt just "little words" either, they say "sh-t" alot, they even say "Jesus!" once, although I'm not sure where that Midgar guy would have gotten the word, since there is no Jesus in FF7 land...

Quick, somebody get Martin Haller on the phone!

Anyway, this game is SATURATED with cursing, and what does the rating say? "Realistic violence." That's it. No strong language, just realistic violence. Then you take FFT, probably the goriest console RPG yet (People getting stabbed with blood exploding out of their chests, guys splattered against the wall with blood everywhere, big lion guys splattering their own chests open...etc) and I think it's rating is "Strong Language, animated violence." Hmm...this makes alot of sense... So what's the deal with these people? Are they just idiots?

-- Shinyhat

ESRB ratings are about as consistant as my spelling and reliable as, well, anything made in Taiwan. You want my honest answer? Yes. They are idiots. Anyone who could have played Final Fantasy 7 and "missed" the mature language and themes--I have a little list: Everything from constant cussing to (attempted) forced beastiality to, um, Sephiroth's chest--and only saw the "Realistic Violence" was either a total moron or bribed. And since I fear Sony's lawyers like the Devil himself, I'm not going to suggest the latter.

Various Q's

Hey, oh great wise column dude man guy.

1)Has it ever bothered you that the music in the forest on Breath of Fire 3 is the EXACT SAME as that in the forest on Crono Trigger? Do I smell plagerism?

Actually, you smell what the Rock was cooking, but the songs are pretty dang close together. This is still not the biggest case of videogame music naughtyness, though. Rent The Good, The Bad and the Ugly, then play Wild Arms. You'll see.

2)How come when rpg characters get shot in battle, it's no big deal, but when they get shot in a story scene, they're instantly dead?

Bullet proof plot-points.

3)I know this is old and all, but maybe RedXIII didn't age 'cause he had some Jenova cells. He was a Sephiroth clone, after all, and the Jenova cells prevented Vincent from aging.

Not bloody likely. :D

4)Have you noticed that Faye Wong(singer for FF8) and Fei Fong Wong(Xenogears) have basically the same name? I'm starting to think the Japanese have something to do with making all our rpg's....

-- Fei Fong Wombat

That's the most foolish idea I've ever heard. Everyone knows the Japanese have nothing to do with RPG production. RPGs are made by Santa's elves!

"Wooah, man... I feel kinda funny..." -- Earth, after 'one too many'.

Why are RPG worlds so messed up?

-- asdf

All good Fantasy or Sci Fi worlds are "messed up" because, frankly, Utopias are dull. Really, really dull. If there were no monsters who mysteriously started appearing recently, if there was no evil corporation and/or empire, if the hero never got a chance to show that Square script writers are really fond of angst... well, the game would be pretty dull. Well, I could do without that last one, but you get the point.

Gosh

Hey there Mr. Guy Who Would Be Called Thunder If He Was An American Gladiator.... (silly yes....but original....right? ^_^)

I'm confused. That's an American Gladiator referance followed by an "Anime" face. Not the most likely combination. Then again, I like RPGs and Professional Wrest... er, Sports Entertainment.

I gotta say, you got on my good side right away when you said you liked the Slayers anime. ^_^ Before I mention why I really wrote, let me tell you about myself. I think I'm extremely rare. ^_^ First, I'm a RPGirl. Second, I'm a contributing editor for Expert Gamer. (Isn't it great to get paid for video game related 'work'? Heh heh...) Oh, and that MST3K segment WAS funny.

...you mean we get paid?

Just the fact that you mentioned interest in Castlevania 64 drove me to write to you. I have one thing to say...stay away....stay far, far away.... I am a HUGE fan of SoTN (I helped with the XG strategy even...) but C64 doesn't compare. My fiance works for Expert Gamer too, (Yep, sorry Thormeister, I'm taken ^_^) and he did the strategy guide thats coming out next issue...after sitting and watching him play the game for hours, I can say that if you're expecting anything close to SoTN in any way, including quality in general, this is not the game for you. The game just feels thrown together...it doesn't seem finished... Whatever you do, rent it first if you absolutely must try it out.

Thanks for the tip. I've started telling my friends the same thing: Unless all the "respected" magazines like PSM, EGM, etc. agree that it's a great game and you love the genre, never buy before you try. Tee hee, I can rhyme!

PS...Add me to the list of people who want to see a picture of you....hehe...

Yeah? I'm guessing your fiance doesn't read this column then, heh heh! <growl>

...wait a minute, does he? Aww, man. I just know this is going to end up with me in traction. Again.

-- Tracy....wondering if she's the only RPGirl who thinks Link is cute.... ^_^

Are you kidding? Girls I know love the guy. Strangely enough, young link seems to be far more popular than adult link. I guess this is really more of an "Aww... cute!" then than a "Nice buns" thing.

Parasite Eve. The movie. Again.

Hey Thor... not a regular contributer, but I know my stuff. Anyways, I was doing my usual information trolling - you know how it is, hit RPGamer and Ask Thor first, then FGNOnline, then I went to my favourite movie news site - Coming Attractions - and lo and behold, it delivers once again! Could this be it? The movie to look forward to after the Final Fantasy movie?! Of course!
January 31, 1999... Madonna recently aquired the film rights to the popular SquareSoft video game Parasite Eve. Although the news has been kept out of the public eye, Madonna successfully secured the rights away from other interested parties when a bidding war arose. What plans the Material Girl has for the property remain unknown. ['Mr. Clark' sent us the bill.]
So the only question is, who to cast as Aya? Of course, my choice would have to be well considered - someone blonde, but not a vacant face.. someone tall, and dignified, but still a cop... how difficult! Maybe one of the Scream cast? (Maybe) A Friend? (Naah..) A Nobody? (yeah right.) Oh yeah, I know the perfect person - Lori Singer! You know, the girl from VR.5, that '96 cable series? She's sooo... cool! Ok.. so she might have been in Warlock and Sense and Sensibility.. but give her some credit...

I know! Let's have our own Dreamcast! Samuel L. Jackson as Daniel! Jennifer Love Hewitt as Melissa Pierce! Umm.. a cool Japanese actor to be Maeda! CG for Eve! And.. oh, oh, Ewan McGregor as that.. um... guy who takes Junk off you! Lots of pyrotechnics! Lots of slime! People getting burned left, right, and centre! No, no, a slime covered Chrysler Building! A slime covered Manhattan! And the Statue of Liberty has GOT to be wasted! AND THE LAST SCENE HAS TO HAVE THE CINEMA BEING TORCHED AND SLIMED!!!!!

Well.. you get the idea. It's just that.. games into movies are an exciting thing for me and I tend to get.. well.. carried away. (..sorry)

PS. you're doing a good job as the umm.. fifth? Q&A guy. yeah, I appreciate your hard work. And, oh, here's the specific URL to the page.

-- Yasha

OK. First a writer for Expert Gamer tells me she'd like to see my picture, then this fellow tells me that Madonna bought the rights to the Parasite Eve movie. Madonna. Maybe Monday's aren't so bad after all...

Anyway, that page seems to seriously suggest Madonna did, indeed aquired the film rights to Parasite Eve. (I checked the Internet Movie Database--they had nothing.) If this turns out to be true (er...) it'll be really neat to compare the Japanese Parasite Eve movie to the America film. Oh, and Lori Singer is nice, but Teri Hatcher wins my vote.

Fine, so she isn't blonde. It's called a wig, people. It's doable... :D

Strong but silent Quickies

Lews Therin sez: "Actually, Thor wasnęt the name of the thunder god, and donęt say ięm wrong because i live in sweden and we worshipped thoose gods about 1200 years ago. His real name was Tor without 'H'." ...killjoy. // Some dude who called me the "Fruit of Odin's Loins" (Eww!) said: "I think I've discovered where Square got the names for FF6's main villains, Kefka and Gestahl. There is a branch of psychology known as Gestalt psychology, and one of the founders of this particular branch was one Kurt Koffka. It's just too much of coincedience." Very intriguing. The only other explanation I've heard of Kefka's name is Franz Kafka. Anyone for a naked lunch? // Leri asked: "Brian Glick?! Did you mention old Big Lick? You mean hes not dead? Ok well, I knew he wasn't dead but I heard he went to another page. Where did he go?" Where? Here. // RiSC said: "Is there any gallery or archive out there showing Garland-Chaos' sketches (I pretty hate just having that front cover gif of FFj's box and the few pieces here @ RPGamer)." All I can say is try Amano's webpage, and good luck.

Thor Stuff

So, on Friday I use fat titles for letters, and today I'm back to thin. What gives, you ask? My own sorry indecisiveness. Once again I call upon the power of the masses: Which do you like better?

The Tom Green show is really neat. Hatred for Canada fading... fading... and gone.

You know, I think I'm going to switch back to Zelda 64. Or Xenogears. Or SaGa Frontier, or 7th Saga, or anything. Well, 'cept for Wild ARMs. Heh heh.

Anyways, I'm off to read a bit of The Iron Dragon's Daughter and then slip into a deep, nightmarish sleep the likes of which your mortal mind cannot begin to comprehend. Ta ta!

- Thor "Lord of the Blarg" Antrim
If Sephiroth had nipples, Final Fantasy 7 would have been rated M.

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