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questionanswer&andrew


On Location in Penetanguishine

Andrew Long - June 13, 2004 - 17:46 EST

SO ANYWAY, here I am, in my future home, updating in remote splendour having just watched the Jays get spectacularly struck out by Randy Johnson. Apparently it was some sort of watershed moment in sport, as when he left it for some reason garnered a standing ovation. This paled in comparison, however, to a remarkable display of baseball n00bness by the crowd around us.

You see, a local pizza concern, named Pizza Pizza presumably so that it is impossible to forget its name even when shitfaced on a 60 of Tequila, has a promotion with the Blue Jays whereby if the Jays strike out seven batters, each ticket stub becomes worth a free slice of pizza. It's shameless promotion, of course; most nights, the Jays' pitching staff has trouble locating such diverse targets as "the strike zone" and "the broad side of a barn" and "Jupiter" that the overall possibility of getting free pizza hovers somewhere near curing cancer with cigarettes. Nonetheless, come the six strikeout mark in the top of the eighth, fans inexplicably decided to stop cheering "Go Baseball!" and picked up instead on the chant "Pizza! Pizza!", lured by the seductive glow of the right field scoreboard.

Now, I'm no baseball purist who thinks that the game belongs in the exotic mudsinks of Mississip, but it seems to me that there are better reasons to yell at Joe Brinkman than for calling balls balls, thus depriving us of hard-earned pizza. It also seems just slightly bush-league that this chant would be taken up at all, and, in the great words of Jack somethingsomething of Hocus Pocus fame, I had to laugh like hell. Then I wept a single tear, stepped on an old lady's foot, and proceeded to wolf down my six dollar nachos with gusto.




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Okay, nobody cares about Shoe anymore
Least of all me
I hereby declare this running joke dead
Long live Shoe
..In our memories, at any rate



For your consideration: old business


this is to clarify and get an answer for this

Are there any "Good" games that have a fun trade system other than Digimon world and Suikoden III?

First let me say I'm sorry I wasn't more descriptive. What I meant by "Trade" is things like sit and wait for NPCs to come in and buy stuff, which to me is a rather fun concept, without the thought that your monster which you need to save the world might die. Or at least Suikoden III's stuff that AREN'T weapons and ARE actually items you might buy in real life, as well have some interesting plot/sidequest possibilities.

Incidentally, Magus was not the coolest. Chrono was.

Kit cloud

ANDREW
Hmm... Well, MMORPGs offer this in a way, since while other players don't necessarily count as NPCs, they do tend to shop from time to time, in my limited experience in the genre. Off the top of my head, though, I can't really think of any other games with that feature, other than the previous Suikodens. Actually, let me qualify that - I can't think of any RPGs. If trading's your thing, games like Caesar and Guild Wars will probably appeal to you.

And, Crono indeed...


Sure I can... I'm doing it as we speak!


Look, Andrew, you can't go taking all your topics from your readers. I mean, this is the second time in a row that you've done reader-determined topics, and that is all you've done this week. Now if you keep this up, eventually everyone will only be talking reader-determined things, the column will degenerate into a mere message board, and you will fade into the background as nothing but a shadow of your former host-self. You must take responsibility for your column! But my question--for it would scarcely be a Q&A column without questions. What, exactly, made Magus "the best damned character in the game?" He's got many facets, many of them exceedingly cool: which ones make him your favorite? Also, am I the only person who actually found Secret of Evermore tolerable? It wasn't the best game I played, but it had good graphics for the time, gameplay and play control tighter than the Mana series, and the storyline was at least entertaining and funny, if not particularly deep. Okay, so the alchemy system sucked. Still, am I the only person who had fun with this game? And therefore is there something wrong with me?

-Jackson Ferrell

ANDREW
First off, ASV takes me to task each time I take cheap shots at SoE, so I have reason to believe he is a fan (and even if he isn't, his nitpickery will forever earn him that designation, since I'm a spiteful bastard).

Now, to the important issue: I like Magus as a character because of his backstory, which just seemed unspeakably... well, cool to me when I first played the game, I like him as a playable character because of his kickassness, and I like him as a sexy beast because of those flowing locks and bulging ...

Well, you get the idea.


Holy Rabid Fanboys, Batman!


To the anti-Nintendo punk who sent in a letter yesterday.

1. If you're complaining about scratching ruining your Gamecube discs, KEEP THEM IN THE CASE AND AWAY FROM YOUR LITTLE BROTHER. Optical formats were never the most durable forms of media in the world, which is why they come in CASES.

2. The Wavebird is the greatest thing to happen to controllers...well, ever. If you miss your rumble feature, which in my opinion is rather hundrum and useless, then DON'T USE ONE. I prefer another 10 hours of battery life, thank you very much.

3. Shut up. (This point was about Mario and Luigi not being "janitors" anymore.)

4. "The Adult Link"? Yes, seeing a few modified polygons on a model's face REALLY makes a game better. Majora's Mask and WW may not have been as good as Ocarina, but they were not so because they featured younger Links.

5. Super Mario RPG, Paper Mario, and Mario and Luigi: Superstar Saga were all brilliant games. Maybe you should try one.

6. Yeah, well, you're right. No online-capabilities sucks. But that's what we have computers and PS2 for.

7. Why is it that the public still thinks Nintendo is geared only towards younger children? It's people like you who piss me off...debunking games such as Super Monkey Ball and Viewtiful Joe because they look "childish". They're amazing games, and even if you don't go for that sort of thing, we've got the ENTIRE Resident Evil series, including number 4 coming out shortly, Eternal Darkness, Timesplitters 2, etc. etc.

ANDREW
And in the first party department, don't forget Metroid!

8. No, the connectivity thing hasn't gone so well, but anything that could spawn Four Swords is fine with me. Besides, the cables are what, five bucks? Who cares?

In conclusion, you're a moron. (Not you, Andrew.) You go play another crappy recycled first-person shooter or war game, and I'll be playing Super Smash Bros, and I'll be having a HELL of a lot more fun than you. Good-bye.

- Feep "I hate idiots"

P.S. For some reason, Blockbuster's around the nation have been receiving copious quantities of the Greatest Hits version of Symphony of the Night. All of you, go out and buy this game NOW, because it's rare as heck. There were around nine of them two days ago, and today there were none. I'm so happy = D

ANDREW
If you're quite done spewing hatred and rage, I'm going to hazard a guess that Lizzy was probably just trying to inspire this kind of reaction in people. It seems kind of out of whack with her previous letters, anyway. I guess I can't chide you, however, since my reaction was much the same.

Incidentally, I don't really know that SotN is all that rare, since Greatest Hits tend to have to be million-sellers to warrant the shiny green band of goodness.


Keep on disagreein' in the free world


Aw, man. You people seem to have messed up tastes for games. This one dude didn't like Paper Mario, GBA-GCN connectivity, and women, from what I read.

ANDREW
Heh. Again, I should probably point out that she was, in fact, a woman, which will make the nonattraction somewhat more understandable (yes, I am aware that a portion of the female population does in fact go ga-ga at the sight of other females, but as that is a minority, it is reasonable to state that most women are not sexually attracted to other women, although I will no doubt unleash the unholy wrath of Joanna Jung for saying this.)
Dude, you're wrong, end of story. Secret of Evermore was fun. Not "Secret of Mana" fun, or "Victoria's Secret" models fun, but I had a good time while it lasted. Majora's Mask was more fun to me than OOT, simply because I like impending doom, and beating a boss when I only had fifteen seconds left to live is always fun. That, and I just plain dig time travel (I would be Chrono's man bitch, but technically Lucca and Marle invented time travel. And being their man bitch seems like it would be SO much more fun.) The sidequests in the notebook were a nice diversion to me, too. Wind Waker (Which I had my little counsins convinced was called "Wind Wanker" for the longest time,) I also dug more than OOT, because it came after a time when somebody was supposed to save the world, and screwed up pretty bad. That, and sailing around was fun (repetitive but pretty.)

ANDREW
I should probably mention that I haven't played through OoT, so I am merely going by what most people tend to think. Personally, I find OoT thus far to be a pale shade of WW, but that's just cuz WW is prettier - when you get right down to it, they're the same game.

And for first letter writer: count yourself three! I still can't stand SoE, though.

You know, I had relatives pull that fake box crap on me. My uncle Danny would always do things like that. He once gave me a supersoaker box with a "my little pony" in it, and a hell of a lot of newspaper, with some rocks to balance it out.

Speaking Al Behd is a fun way to make yourself a social outcast, and my cousin's friend Brian can do it flawlessly. He also spends from 5 to 9 hours a day practicing Smash Bros. Melee. Don't be too worried about what the Al Behd say, they're all homosexuals, and can't dare to come out of the closet to the rest of the world. Oh, besides Yuna and Rikku, you pervert. Oh, but as for the language, what you do is go to a save point in that first whack ruins palace you go to after falling through the "Dad Vortex" in Zanarkand, in the begining, and you can pick to import all the Al Behd language data from another save game. I did not do this, as I am too busy envisioning a room full of connected video game systems and voluptuous women, all at my beck and call.

ANDREW
Let's play sense making game! I edit out previous paragraph three screens up up up! The fountain blue in falling bombs! Can you find wall mark?

So yeah, that's pretty much what I think about that.

The best way I got a game back in the day was what I call the Nausea Dedication method. What I would do was be so worked up about a game that's about to be released that I got physically nauseous with anticipation, and save every penny that I earned (I got a dime to bring out the garbage. Yay.) for months in advance, and months afterward. Then I would scrape it all together, realize I was still 50 bucks off, and get angry at my father that didn't pay child support and my mother that was stupid eough to date this jobless idiot and have a child with the deadbeat too. Then my grandmother, my uncle Danny, or one of my aunts would buy me the game, since they could tell that my parents were idiots. Ah, childhood...

Well, take care of yourselves, and never go near an elderly driver. They aren't all there, and just may back into you (and your boss's new black convertible. Poor Lou.) at 50 MPH. Keep it cool,

Kenny the C.

ANDREW
O.o


The Nose


Hello, Cast, and Ni to you.

Now that you realize I'm a geekazoid at heart, (haha), I will rant on and on about MY favorite RPG game....

Evil Voodoo Doll: Oh boy, here she goes...

*smacks it* SILENCE! *coughs*

For me, the true gaming obsession started...when I layed hands on Kingdom Hearts.

Up until then, the only games I had were Grandia 2 (I hate that ending, by the way), Dark Cloud, and FFX (It was the first game I ever touched on PS2, go figure.) However, when I saw the ads for KH, I went twitchy. Forget the disney stuff, forget the bright colors, all I saw was something that spurred this reaction: "Oooooh....pretty."

So, being the good RPG child I was, I bought it...

And then I became quite obsessed. Days at school (math class, lol) were spent pondering what would happen next to the characters and in the storyline.

As to the length, I would have to say KH had a good amount. (I finished it...forty hours, fifty at the very most.) Then again, I am crazy with my mad skills. (haha)

All in all, it also lead me to play FF7 and FF8 (since Squall and Cloud and most everyone else were in it)

And now I find myself glaring at nothing in particular, just waiting for the sequels to come out.

Damn them all for making me wait!

I will now wait in my little cave with my little TV for KH2, COM, and Xenosaga 2 to come out. (Yes, I am also a fan of the LOOOOONG games)

Sincerely,

The Barrier (don't ask)

P.S. Forgive my ramblings if they make no sense, haha. (I tend to do that, you know)

ANDREW
Thanks for sharing, The Barrier. I really must track down KH, although my budget for random expenditures has just been met with a book I purchased on the basis of the following passage (in reference to a pair of fortysomething lovebird professors):

"Who would have thought that unattractive people of their age and learning would encounter sex and murder in the open air? They paid a heavy price for their nostalgia."

Yeah, I'm a shallow, shallow man. So sue me.


The Nose


Castoshaker,

Man, it's raining today and you what that means... Yep, another fun-filled, water-logged day at work. Oh well, I guess I'll have to blow up that stupid old guy instead of stabbing him. Oh well, it seems the rain has stopped...now for story time! It seems during the onslaught of fried chicken madness of yesterday's events, I have found a salt shaker in my pocket when returning to my car. I can't really say how it got there cuz I'm sure I would have noticed it. For today's topics choice! Lengthiness of RPGs... Well, it depends, some are good when short and sweet, but I always have a sweet spot for long storytime and twists and turns at every bend. Okay, so I lied, I'll comment on both topics. For game-getting-ness, I remember saving up my money from Christmas and my birthday and then spend it all on that one game. I always loved looking at the box art and reading the manual while eagerly waiting to place it on its golden console-pedistal. Well, I can't exactly place one game because I always did that for each game I got. Ahh, the memories... I sometimes do it now, but not as often. Speaking of now, 8 more days until you have to put blockades up on the bridges to the border!!

Damn, how DID that salt shaker wind up in my pocket?,

O' Shrouded One

ANDREW
Blockades? What are you talking about?


Yes, we've got music, sweet music


Heeey...do you remember me? ....or...do I remember you? You're the RPGamer letters dude who had at one point wanted me to do music for a game or something, right? If so, too bad! I'm busy now :). If not, disregard the above!

ANDREW
Nope, that'd be Andrew Bilyk, a wannabe developer of some repute who toils now in the sugar mines of game development with fellow RPGamer alum Doug "Stom" Hill on a GBA title, which Doug tells me is "going well". Doug is secretive that way sometimes, although I suspect it's just because he likes being secretive, and not out of any real need to keep secrets.

I do have something somewhat on topic to say, however! Beyond Good and Evil was mentioned. That is one SWEET game, I must say. BUT, I must also say that I don't know how that guy had played over 30 hours in there. That game took me about 12 hours to finish and I'm not really fast or anything. It is indeed a short-ish game. It could have used some more length. Though I do like the shorter games now, since I am almost always occupied with other things that music come before gaming (like music and schoolwork).

The BEST thing about Beyond Good and Evil is the music in my opinion. That's why myself and a couple other people collaborated and made a remix/rearrangement of a couple themes from the game. You can grab it (and other game remixes and spiff originals) at my site: www.supergreenx.com ! Hurrah!

-SGX

ANDREW
So, a plugger, eh? I shall allow you to live THIS time, but I promise you, you'll live to... well, not regret it, but I may cause some sort of mischief for you, like, say, changing a letter or two in that url. Muhahhahaha!



SINCERELY,

Well, I must regretfully truncate this column by one letter, for I am ravenously hungry, as the ravens say. For next week, let's debate the merits of ravens versus crows! Bonus points for mentioning Edgar Allen Poe or anything remotely RPG related. Until such a time, may your misfortune be strictly creamsicle related, and may you send in letters on our actual topic, the new Musashi title!


Andrew Long was just tricked by a fountain.

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