A thousand words
Welcome to Thursay Thorsday Madness! We've an unusually large column
today, and there's a big surprise
at the end Something I've been promising for a long time. I won't say what,
just be sure and read everything, or you might miss it. (Well, either that
or skip to Thor Stuff. Cheater.)
||Questions? Questions? Questions?|
(Ask me stuff. Please?)
(Bow down to the big daddy, D Bock! Hah!.)
||Like old crap?|
| ||The Q&A Archive|
(See how many typoes you can count!
||Uncontrollable urge to flatter/mock Thor?|
Take a nice relaxing vacation at
Thor Hack Archive
How To Waste Time
You remember that bonus dugeon in Lufia 2. It had 99 floors and you
looked for these things called "Iris treasures." I havn't played lufia 2
in years but its been nagging me. What the heck happens when you get all
the treasures and get down to that godforsaken floor 99 or 100? I always
thought maby you'd get to fight that nuetral sinstral guy.
-- Fizban "Wheres my hat?" Palidine
Nada. Nothing happens. It's just for bragging rights -- though I don't
suggest you literally brag about it. I can almost see it now....
"Hey guys! I just spent six weeks accomplishing nothing!" 'Hey, that's
great to hear. Now take a freaking bath already.'
When are they coming out with the new Dragon Warrior. They use to
release them the same time the Final Fantasies came out, but the makers
blew that. I played the DW series on NES and now I think it would be
awesome Playstation series. WHEN?
Time was, Dragon Quest (Warrior) used to rule supreme. Not even the Final Fantasy series could beat it in Japan.
Then after Dragon Quest VI came 'round, Enix followed it up with... nothing. Final Fantasy VII came and went, Final
Fantasy VIII came (but hasn't exactly "went" yet), and still no more than a handfull of DQVII pictures. After being delayed
twice, the new release date is fall '99. In Japan, of course. Blarg.
The end of the world as we know it
Do you think there will ever be chance for another Phantasy Star for DC?
Sega is building a reputation of bringing back older characters into games
for DC, and also that Phantasy Star compilation was released so I would
guess that could be a sign.
I think releasing Phantasy Star V for the Dreamcast would be a brilliant
business decision from Sega. So, no, there's no chance.
One other point is, have you ever wondered why
everybody is certain a Chrono Trigger 2 is coming? I've talked to somebody
who says it's confirmed, but I still believe it's only a rumor, though I
do think it will eventually happen. Even Square's FAQ on their site says
they arne't doing it now because they don't have the time. Keep up the
work, umm...hehe, bye.
Chrono Trigger 2 is kind of like the armageddon. Deep down inside, we all
know it's coming, just not when. And though some might deny it, they're
probably not only saving $50 for CT2, but they've
already made plans to try and get some just before New Years Eve.
Just in case.
Excuse me, but as a representative of the Generosity-Disadvantaged
Association of America, I must strongly request that you immediately
remove every trace of the word "niggardly" from your column! This is a
horrible word that has plagued us cheap people for hundreds of years.
>From medieval Britain to colonial America we have been taunted and
tortured by that awful term! Happily, its similarity to other slurs has
seen its use decline greatly, but your usage risks a new explosion of this
word! If you have any concerns, call me collect at 439-1210.
-- A. Longbottom, founder, GDAA
Hilarious. That's all I'll say. Hilarious. I just feel really sorry for
anyone who's phone number (minus area code, of course) is 439-1210. This
could be the biggest disaster since 867-5309...
Advanced Final and Fantasy
Although I actually missed reading last Monday's column on Monday, it
came to my attention that there was one Deathstalker who was curious as to
what sort of mechanics people had devised for paper-based RPGs.
Well, I'm one of those people who've been doing just that. For nearly
seven years now, I've been working on one such game. Although I can't
really hand over the nitty-gritty of my mechanics immediately, I can say
Initially my damage generation was fairly small and un-FF-like, but
later improvements saw the development of a mechanics system that more
closely emulated & manipulated the hundreds and thousands of Hp that the
later FF's had. More importantly it was capable of doing so quickly,
efficiently & without the players needing to be walking calculators or
math geniuses. (Or using a wheelbarrow full of dice.)
Of course there's more to the game, which was originally based off
FFIV(II) alone, which has since grown to encompass some of the aspects of
all of the FF series save for the 7th & 8th installments. Most recently
came better defined range & area that corresponded with that of FFT. Just
to give you an idea how much it's grown, the first book was 54 pages long.
The most recent complete version (The 5th Revision) was 304 pages in
length, the 6th Revision, when finally done, will probably break the 400
Throughout it's development, I've also been in contact with Square
since about 1994. Beginning with James Gillis at SquareSoft Inc. in
Redmond, switching to Jun Iwasaki and Kenji Mimura in Costa Mesa (Who
promptly rejected my idea, BTW), all the way to Square Co. Ltd. in Japan,
where I've talked with various different people, including FF's creator
Hironobu Sakaguchi. The folks in Japan are alot more open then their US
counterparts, but you can also pick up FF keychains, watches, cards,
notepads and a host of other liscenced FF stuff there as well.
I'll see if I can a up that publicly playable version in the next
couple of weeks so that Mr.Deathstalker and anyone else interested can
give it a whirl.
-- Respectfully, Jeremy Baker
Hey, that's magnificently cool. Anyone out there who is a fan of both pen and paper role playing and console RPGs are
most likely drooling right now -- I know I am. (But then again, what else is new?) Good luck with Square, Jer. I can't
wait to take a peak at that demo...
Just imagine: You're playing a Moogle, riding on your trusty Chocobo (played by a friend, never stops complaining
about being "nothing more than a freaking horse with feathers"). Suddenly enemies deactivate their cloaking devices
-- that's why you can't see them on the world map, you knew that, right? -- and swarm. You hop off Jenny (or
"Chokobra", in the game) and slip on your flaming claws of burning fury death +3. What follows is messy, gory,
disgusting, and fun as hades.
Oh, and you gained two levels. Congratulations.
Arguing art. Almost as productive as arguing politics
I figure I might as well explain why I like Amano's art.
The first and foremost thing is its uniqueness. It isn't classic
videogame art. It isn't silly cartoons, 'it's all the same to me' anime,
or anything like that. Don't get me wrong, anime style is pretty cool,
and the only good Saturday morning cartoons when I was growing up were
anime. But Amano's work is very different in that respect. I have a lot
of respect for an artist who handles a pencil the way he does: it's very
assured and unafraid. He isn't scared to "mess up", and therefore the
marks that aren't exactly where one would expect them only serve to make
the drawings better. I have myself taken this concept to heart and it has
improved my art. Neither is he afraid to show his own style.
I agree, the faces of most of the characters look a lot alike. That
simply tells us that faces aren't his area of intrest. It's plain to see
that he enjoys making clothing and backgrounds. Personally, I gloss over
clothing. Amano glosses over faces. I do like the faces he draws, though.
They are the most Japanese looking I have ever seen. A lot of Japanese
videogame art looks like an attempt to draw more American looking
characters. I don't know why that is. But I respect Amano for that.
Well, that's my rant for today.
-- Princess Artemis
Having started this debate, I wish to end it. Amano and Nomura are really
different in style, so far different, its not really fair to compare them.
Amano, even though he does Anime films, is more of an artist. His
character designs are art in his style. Most people either love or hate
his style, and it can change. My first real exposure to his work was the
FF6 Nintendo strategy guide, and I thought "What the hell's with all these
fruity drawings of all my favorite characters!! Locke looks like a fag!
And Terra's blonde?!? What?" Then I got more information, and found out
he designed all the characters. Over time, I grew to love his art. His
art is very European, not Asian, and it is also very Goth. And you have
to like these things to like his art. And yes, you can like goth things
without actually being a Count Chocula yourself. Nomura is more of a
Anime/Magna type. Cloud is the classic anime hero, funky hair and all.
Tifa... well Tifa is your typical girl in skirt with insane proportions.
Seph is a classic grey haired suave villain. Barret is what the Japanese
perceive as an average black American. And who but a Magna style artist
could design a character as goofy and trite as Cait Sith? So, though I'd
really rather have back Amano, I am happy with Nomura's work, it looks
like he improved his talents for FFVIII (I mean, come on, just look at
Rinoa), and its not really fair to compare the two.
-- The Wandering Gambler
I like the idea of Amano going Goth. I can almost imagine him sitting in
a dark room... The Cute posters plastered everywhere... Marilyn Manson
blasting in the background... black lipstick and fingernails... kinda
makes you look at him in a whole new light, doesn't it?
Like apples and oranges. Like fire and ice. Like Americans and Canadians.
um... well I read your column today (wednesday, although it might be
tuesday's column) and your quickies mention that "So-and-so wants to point
out that Maeda is Chinese, not Japanese"... I hope that's a typo. It
should be the other way aroun; since the original claim was that he was
chinese, this quickie wouldn't make much sense. But I just wanted to point
Yeah, my bad. That's what I get for not quoting directly. Maeda is most
definitly Japanese, it says so several billion times throughout the game,
which is exactly 503 less than the number of times I've goofed.
Hey, it's that id dude!
Dear RPGamer staff and readers,
Since brevity is the soul of wit, I'll try to be concise. Please accept my
sincere apology for the unprofessional manner in which I disappeared from
this column and the gaming world entirely. The reasons for my vanishing
act are many and complicated, but my resignation did not have anything to
do with pressure from the staff or readers--you were always supportive. I
should have known all along I could not juggle this column, school, and my
personal life/ambitions/whatnots, but like a fool I made promises I
couldn't keep. It may not matter to you that I left, now that you can
enjoy such a talented replacement, but I had to write you for my own peace
of mind. I don't care if you found me funny, dull, inspiring, insipid,
mawkish, enlightening, or emetic: I'm concerned about the sober fact that
I let you down. I'm very sorry.
In case you want to know, I'm doing well--if a little stressed--and my
life has taken many exhilarating spirals. I'm still learning (we always
will), and I count my brief sojourn writing for you full of invaluable
lessons. Thank you for the great memories. If any of you would like to
banter with me, here's my e-mail address (email@example.com). It would be
wonderful to hear from any of you. We can talk about anything you'd like,
as long as you don't ask me about games. :) Anyway, I've cluttered Thor's
column enough, but one last thing: If I can sum up this letter and my
career here with one word, let it be love. Love is the answer. Don't ever
-- Josh Reid
Now, see, that's the real difference between Josh Reid and me.
I don't even know what sojourn means. :D
Just the facts, ma'am. Just the facts.
If FF7pc sold 185,000 copies, I must say that is pretty damn good
considering it was released in June. The numbers Thierry Nguyen posted
had most the year to rack up sales. Hell, some (maybe most) great PC
games don't post numbers like FF7pc. In addition, a shit load of the
sales would probably go to profit, due to most of the cost went to just
Also, in light of these numbers, the sales in dollars of the top 25 best
selling PC games (PC Data) ranged from $31,000,000 (Starcraft) to
$2,200,000 (Nascar w/Tracks; it sold 225,000 copies). If you take the
average cost of Starcraft ($42), FF7pc could have made $7,770,000. Pretty
damn good considering this is only a port.
-- The Red Scare
So we might actually get FF VIII-pc after all. Huzzah! Not that I
could play it, or anything. Heck, I couldn't even play Final Fantasy
VII on my computer. But then again, that's what my trusty PlayStation
is for. <sniff> <sniff> Hey, do I smell a little... Thurday
Thorsday Madness? That's right cats and dogs, the rest of the column
will be weird, self-serving tripe which I will most likely enjoy more
than any of you. Aren't you glad we have these little talks?
Thor's girlfriend. Well, not really.
Congrats on your new girlfriend. ;)
I thought she looked like a mage of
some sort until I scrolled down to the bottom and saw... an arm-cannon on
her left hand? The only magic-using cyborgs I know of are Faerite cyborgs
in my soft sci-fi Gama-co future, and they usually have a lot more
implants than that... and usually don't wear mage-type outfits or have
funky (but still pretty) hair colors like that. So, what *is* her story?
Hey now, leave my girlfriend alone. Love isn't bound by any one RPG mythology!. And didja ever stop and wonder if she's from Shadowrun? Why, mages
with implants are quite common there. Or! It might not be a arm-cannon after
all. She might have just got her hand stuck in a magic Pringles can. Didja ever think
of that one? Eh? No? I rest my case.
I know what you did last summer
Hello... "Thor." I know where you live and I know what you eat. I know
everything about you; all of your little secrets, all of those things you
try to keep hidden away. I know things your parents, your peers, and your
girlfriend doesn't know. I know what you did last semester.
I know where you sleep and I know where you don't. I know everything
about you. I know things about you you don't even know. If I were you, I
would be very, very afraid, lest you find yourself visited upon in the
midst of the night by a very unwelcome stranger who goes by the name of
The Keeper of Death.
Fear me, "Thor." I am your worst nightmare. I am he who stalks the
sinful. I am he who delivers justice. It is my divine right to bring
retribution to all poor Lambs. And that means you, "Thor."
-- "The Man With the Mole on His Chin"
Help! The guy who translated Xenogears is after me. What, don't you
see it? The clues are everywhere:
He quotes words for no reason. He repeats things over and over again.
He... um... well, he just is, ok? Geez, all I ask for is a little
fun and everyone jumps down my throat.
I feel kind of odd asking about this. Honestly!! It feels like I'm
really prying. Here it goes. I've been reading the column since it was
on square.net. I have to admit, you are probably the best Q&A guy so far,
and, er . . . you seem like an intelligent guy, skilled with a pen. It
does seem, however, that you have way too much time for an 18 year old. I
was wondering, do you go to college/school? I guess I'm asking because I
think I would lose respect for someone who seems like he should (receive a
formal education) and doesn't, and I'm probably also asking because I
received this disgusting little habit similar to gossipy nosiness from my
I don't remember if I've already gone over this in detail, but I guess I'll just rant
away and see what happens. I don't believe in college. In my admittedly
short existance, I've met two types of college students. The first is the
obsessive type, who puts his or her life on hold while working their
way through college. They're a tired, beaten down lot, who are usually
intelligent and frustrated with the redundancy and general useless of
a good chunk of tests.
The other type I've met are the slackers. They take fun courses.
They don't really care about the future so much
as the now, and are in college more or less for something to do than
to learn. Now, neither of these groups are bad. I'm friends with a
few of each, in fact -- though only one is as exaggerated as I've made
'em out to be.
The point of all this is that I don't wish to fall
into either of these categories, or even somewhere in between. I'm
happy writing for fun, and I get by fine without much money. I've always
been more of a "Get a few friends over and game" kinda guy than a "spend
spend spend!" kind. And while I might take a few courses on writing, I'd
never want to write for a living. It's simply too unstable, especially
today when "job security" means they change the locks to your office after
Anyways, it's not that I'm against the idea of
people going to college, it's just I've no interest whatsoever.
Hope this answers your question,
you lil' snoop you. :D
What's that tingly feeling? Quickies, of course!
that'dbeme whines, "Hey man, you said that Citan's wifes name was Susan and
his daughters was Kim, thats not right! Shame shame shame! His wife is Yuri,
and daughter is Midori. SHAME!" Um, hehe. No comment. Believe it or not,
I actually received several letters like this.
AK said: "What should I do some guy on your forum is stealing my handle (AK)."
I suggest The Club. It's cheap, effective and comes in a variety of colors.
Someone pointed out I typo'd "reviving" yesterday. It's true. I usually just
spellcheck the answers, the Quickie responses are too trivial. And I'm too
CyberMan X said to tell AK that calling someone names doesn't usually
make that person see your point. He then apologized for using the term
"Jap" and resigned from office.
And finally, Stifu said: "ok i checked the archive: 1430 typos. If you don't believe me count for
yourself." I can't tell if you're joking or not, but if you're serious... you
are f'n insane, man. :D
Last chance to get those Thor hacks in, on Friday I update the Archive for
the final time. Well, for a while. I'm sure the fun is starting to wear
off for a lot of you... and I'm dying to try something. Check back Friday
to see just what. :D
I've lots of goodies for ya'll today. Mostly fun miscellany. Lets see. First we
have an awesome Thor comic book by Zipflint.
As a huge fan of black mages, I must say: Kickass.
TearDragon, the cool cat who created Anime Thor designed a line of Final Fantasy
VIII-esque Thor merchandise. (You know, like how you can buy Cloud's jacket
for $800?) Here's the "Thor" trench coat, just
$50,000; and the Stuffed Katerina doll, which
retails for around $5.32.
The last fan-item today is Caige's funky Thor RPG character sheet thingy.
And now for the surprise: I finally got my pictures scanned. Enjoy.
Thor Antrim looking quite pissed. Or at least disinterested.
Thor Antrim, grinning and wearing a silly hat
So, uh, there. Hope the whole mess wasn't built up so much everyone
is disappointed. 'Cause the penalty for being disappointed with my
looks is death by Yuffie. :D
- Thor "I haven't dyed my hair red in six months. I think it's stuck." Antrim
You know you want me, baby.