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questionanswer&andrew


Shredder, Build Me A Bodyyyy!

Andrew Long - June 19, 2004 23:35 EDT

I HAVE AN AMAZING TRICK FOR USE whenever you're stuck trying to get started on something and you just can't power through: play the Samus Appearance Theme from Metroid. Not only will it get you into a startuatory frame of mind, it might even give you the ability to roll up into a tiny little ball and drop bombs on your front lawn, which I hear is a great way to control that white grub population. Yes, once you master the fine art of Metroid bomb-jumping, there'll be no stopping you.

It seems, however, that my Jade Cocoon bashing must be ended, as it was received most unfavourably by at least two people, one of whom even took such offense to my request for reader intervention into the answering of a question on a game that I've never played that he promised never to return. In commemmoration of this event, not only will we feature the full answer to this question, which had I been blessed with longer than the hour I had to update yesterday would have appeared then, but we will even have the reintroduction (or hey, flat-out pilferage, I've been known to do it before) of an age-old Q&A feature called "How do you pronounce..."

Yes, that's right. The lovely and talented Paws will be dusting off the old microphone to bring you the wacky pronunciation of the last three years' worth of words that nobody's quite sure of. Since last this little feature has appeared, we've had such crazy names as... Well, voice acting kind of jiggers this little segment up real good, but there are still plenty of games without it, so send in your queries to paws@rpgamer.com, and somewhere down the line, you'll get to hear some good, down-homey pronunciation. Well, actually, it's more like up North, eh, but that never stopped anyone before. And now, to celebrate this event spectacular, let us all hum the metroid item song!

Now that's how you kick off a column in style!




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Go, keep your money

Mmm... strawberries


Andrew,

Cliché' or not, there's that special moment in many RPG's where funky stories and monotonous leveling systems come together to form that warm fuzzy feeling, that I finally have a clue as to where the plot is going and feel in control of the direction I want my characters to level in. Unfortunately the fuzzy-effect doesn't always occur until the whole 'saving the world' realization, but all the same, normally worth the wait(if anything for the sidequests). Always hated that, finally get familiar with the game and it ends...then again momma always said I twas slow.

Then there are games that are so well balanced, that 'fuzzy' prevails the whole way through, like Chrono Trigger and Final Fantasy IX. Simply fun to play, and not life consuming...my definition of gaming bliss. There are few things greater than such balanced play and plot, other than freshly picked strawberries and true womanly love, but that's only thrown in for scale.

Anyway, first time caller, long time listener and all that, hope I didn't bore you to much.

Mike
(fuzzy=bliss=strawberries)

ANDREW
Welcome aboard, Mike fuzzyblissberries! I can't say as Final Fantasy IX had quite the cohesion necessary to sustain that fuzziness, but I will agree that during my first playthrough, it did appear in fits and starts. Eerily enough, the game in which I have most keenly felt the sensation you're describing is the other one you've mentioned, Chrono Trigger, which was the equivalent of a half-dozen hits of ecstasy to my poor little 14-year old brain. On the upside, after being brainriddled by CT, I am now easily distracted by anything involving strawberries, and so it is with great delight that I read your letter and get vague urges to go play through CT again, or at least hit up a rave.


Boingy, boingy!


Hey. I agree with you and that guy who say that a final boss who's, say, the queen bitch of difficulty, as she makes servants of the devil and whoever he's afraid of is just too freaking hard, although a challenge is nice. However, I don't think that Ultimecia was all that bad. I actually beat her final form without getting hit. I know it sounds insane, but I just junctioned all sorts of crap onto my stats to make my men more powerful than Thor on some kind of Crazy Asgardian Crack, used that item, either Hero or Miracle, the one that makes you always in limit break, and wailed on her ass as hard as I could. If a limit break didn't come up, I hit the character change button until it did. All in all, I was disappointed at how easy she was. But still, I can appreciate having difficulty, as I took the time to unlock all the things that Square stole from me at the entrance to the castle. Also, what the hell was up with Adel? Was she a dude? Because she had nothing near to, say, female features, and she wasn't wearing a shirt. Really, man, what the hell was that? Sorceresses have to be chicks, and Square should go and poke their eyes in pennance for this game in general, and making me fight that she-man.

ANDREW
Hmm. Well, I don't know what crazy Ultimecia crack you were smoking, cuz I unlocked everything too, and I even used the same trick with Aura. I think the problem was that I lost both Zell and Rinoa, who were at level 100 and 92, respectively (and also, the fact that I had 3 characters nearly at level 100 probably didn't help me any.) That left me with Squall, who had been bashed down to 2 HP right at the outset, Quistis, who I basically had to have draw Life from Ultimecia every turn to keep Squall in business, and Irvine, who at level 72 took a hell of a long time to beat up on Ultimecia, since besides his limits sucking he also required ammo for them (and besides, I had nothing junctioned to his Magic because he was like, fifth in my line of succession. How's THAT for Fithos Lusec and all that jazz?) Anyhow, count yourself lucky.

And yes, I too marvelled at Adel's manliness, though I passed it off at the time as a side effect of blocky polygons. Looking back, however, I can see that Adel was obviously a product of the East German Olympic program, which is probably why she was so good at whipping Seifer into submission.

Oh, I'm a conservative. I say that ignoring things isn't a solution, but blowing them up is. I mean, let's face it, if I'm fighting with this jackass, and I shoot him, I think that I don't have to fight him anymore. Now, that's not to say that destruction is always the perfect solution, but it can be sometimes (WWII. Hate to say it, but I'd rather destroy two foreign cities that I don't give a crap about than hear about even five dead american troops.) But hey, if Rpgs have taught me anything, it's that massive destruction breeds massive destruction. So if you're gonna blow somebody up, MAKE SURE YOU GET IT RIGHT THE FIRST TIME!

Radically yours,
Kenny the C.

ANDREW
Hmm... Professor, given attitudes like this, would you say that we should crack open each other's heads and feast on the sweet goo within?

PROFESSOR
Yes I would, Kent.


And if the Devil is six... Then God is SEVEN GOD IS SEVEN GOD IS SEVEN


Let's see, gaming bliss ... No doubt in my mind on that one.

Y'see, FF3(6) was never released in Europe, so, it had to be bought on import and played with an adapter. Sadly, some freaky code in the end sequence made it hang when (spoiler) Gogo falls into the hole (/.

Years went by, and in the year 1999, FIVE YEARS after completing the game, I finally found it for an emulator, played it through, and completed it, and saw the entire ending. Oh, the wonder. Pure bliss.

ANDREW
Well, I like the happy ending, but even so... You poor soul ;_;


This monkey's gone to heaven


As odd as it may seem, I don't think I ever enjoyed myself more than in the City of Sol in the oft-overlooked and rather flawed PS1 RPG Legend of Legaia. That place was awesome...

Also in contention would be in a recent playthrough of Final Fantasy VII, after Sephiroth ran his blade through Aeris, and my brother shouting "I'm Sephiroth, biotch!" Dave Chappelle style. That was pretty funny. = D

I can't wait for Tales of Symphonia.

And if you didn't know Aeris dies, then you shouldn't be reading this column.

- Feep "O-holy-master"

ANDREW
I would probably find that funnier if I could remember who Dave Chappelle was. Alas, I am far too lazy to tab over to IE, so I'm afraid it's up to you guys to furnish me with a URL.


Well, he stayed on topic, so it stays out of the LJ


Hey Andrew,

I can't really say that I enjoyed the first BFM that much, seeing how most of the time they never told you where to go, and you usually had to more or less, wander around until you found where to go yourself. The good thing about it, is that the place was so small you could find where to go easily. Other than the fact you had to find where to go yourself with no possible help from anyone in the game, which is basically a question of why they're even their, the gameplay was actually pretty fun.

Anyways, the only game I really truly hate(more than the pathetic Star Ocean: the Second Story,) is Final Fantasy X. Not for reasons about it's difficulty, and not for bosses that took such a long time to beat. It's just that both the gameplay and the storyline throughout the game is so boring it's pathetic. The storyline is decent for the first few hours(meaning less than 4,) and then just right there you can't even stand the game, but of course, the first time I forced myself to finish the game, while the second time I decided to give it another chance, I deleted my character just after 4 hours of playing the game seeing as it sucks and I no longer had a reason to force myself to play it(and wouldn't have a second time.)

Then, you didn't really ask this, but other people were emailing in like you did ask. Anyways, about everyones favorite moments in games and such. The first is, well, what can I say, but the fact that I love Tactics Ogre(or, TACTICS OGRE IS GOD, yet, that is blasphemous,) and I think that just about explains it. Where the second, is when I was waiting for what seemed like an eternity for Arc the Lad Collection to release, already placing a preorder yet still calling up as soon as the store opened on each new release date to see if the game has been recieved yet, and then finally owning the game, as well as a character watch seeing as I preordered.

Lastly, I don't get how people could think Ultimecia on FF8 was so hard, first time I've played and beat the game was in 22 hours, and the only reason for that is because of the time I've spent playing the Triple Triad card game, yet it doesn't matter if someone beats it at 20 hours, or 99 hours, her difficulty is still the same, yet the thing is, I've never once lost at her(as well as the fact that I didn't have the Lionheart the first time I've fought her, in fact, I never upgraded weapons once).

-andrew- -kupomogli-

ANDREW
Okay, well... Not upgrading the weapons is kind of dumb, but whatever blows your hair back. I don't even know if it's possible to beat FFVIII in 22 hours, though, especially if you were playing TT for any extended period of time. The sheer number of plot points in the game makes me doubt that, to say nothing of the many drawn-out scenes where Squall just stands around. Herego, I'm going to have to ask you to prove this once again, cuz frankly, I don't believe you.

I actually kind of liked that you had to think for yourself in BFM. As you say, the area was pretty small, so it wasn't like it was too much effort, or too scattershot, like the progression through Metroid Fusion. Most of the time, if you paid attention to the plot points, you could piece things together without too much trouble.

As to your bitter, mystifying hatred of FFX (the first few hours are some of the most tedious in the game, in my opinion), I can only assume you think that makes you 1337. Congrats, you got the powerup and won the game, or at least, you would have if you hadn't decided to delete it first.


Not one, but four blissful moments


I think the first blissful moment, gaming-wise, was when I beat Super Mario Bros. 3. (Thinking about it, I think I COULD clock SMB3 in 11 minutes if I tried really, really hard.) I was 10 at the time.

Moment #2 was getting Legend of Zelda for Christmas, which happened to be the ONE gift I hadn't guessed what it was under the tree from feeling it. I was 12 at the time.

Moment #3 was when I was at the mall and looking at an FMV trailer of FF7 and declaring it to be one of the coolest things ever. I was 15 at the time. (7 years later, I still don't own it.)

Moment #4 was getting DDR Konamix and a dance pad last Christmas. Yayz.

And then come the weird moments, such as after I beat the first Game Boy Zelda (Link's Awakening) and found the ending so disturbing I couldn't play it again for months. (And then there's the whole thing with Ghaleon and Lunar, which I would rather NOT discuss.)

Bucket Mouse
"Ooh, not only Edward is a SPOONY BARD!!, he's a WICKED BARD!! too!"--myself referring to FF4

ANDREW
Then discuss it we shall not, which is probably a good thing, since I haven't played Lunar in ages. As such, all I remember of Ghaleon was being endlessly amused by snickering and saying "Hehehe.. Gay Leon!" back when I first played it through on the Sega CD. I guess I kind of remember most of the evilness too. Poor Quark ;_;


The long-awaited JC Controversy Spectacular


It seems you and I are having a lack of communication

Also, I am NOT a girl!

ANDREW
Then perhaps you should look into using an email address that isn't under the name Kandy.

Ok to clarify in Jade Cocoon 2(which really wasn't THAT bad.) you raise creatures like in Monster Rancher and Pokemon. You are aloud to put three monsters on each side your right,left,front and back (these overlap, so if it's on the right corner it will also attack when you use the right side. You can only attack with one side at a time.)however you begin with the ability to place a total of only THREE monsters no matter where you place them on the sides. The question is, is it possible to get three on all four sides?

Kit cloud

ANDREW
Hmm... Upon doing a minimal amount of research, I now realize I probably could have saved myself the trouble (and a reader) if I'd just taken the ten seconds to look up the FAQ on this game. Incidentally, you too could have saved a fair bit of trouble by undertaking the same task, but that's neither here nor there. What is the most pressing matter is that you can, in fact, fill that entire square with little beasties, but to do so you have to pass the advancement tests in the Arena. That's right, three to begin with plus five tests equals eight squares' worth of pure monster goodness (although Pokeballs seem somehow much more convenient a means of storage than a giant wooden disc.)


Unfit for Print


I NEED TO KNOW HOW TO BEAT THE BOSS AFTER YUNA GETS CAPTURED BY THE AL BHED

ANDREW
I don't know what's more amazing - the fact that you can operate a computer, or that you were unable to follow the trail of clues in the opening of that battle sequence. Either way, let me see if I can school you in the fine art of implication. When in a game your character draws a sword, scratches his head, and looks pointedly towards the big electricity generator that provides electricity, which coincidentally is what your other character has just casually mentioned might help considerably in defeating the giant rusty machine, ALSO RUN THROUGH THE MAGIC OF ELECTRICITY, and then a target appears over that generator, you hit the freaking target! If you can't pick up on that level of subtlety, woe betide you if you ever have to deal with a capricious friend, associate, or significant other, because they don't tend to employ bricks in the face unless they're exasperated, at which point it's probably too late. Incidentally: it's too late.

YOU 'DREW
QUICKIE I
dear castomel,

please come to the castle. i have baked a cake for you.
yours truly, hall of fame announcer harry carey.

Andrew:
I should probably be suspicious, especially with all those bats hovering around in the full moon as they are, but hey - it's cake!

QUICKIE II
immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate immolate
-ex-drinkslinger

Andrew:
If you're implying that I received fifteen letters on politics, you can just go and imply somewhere else! The contents of my inbox are a closely guarded secret, as Repellents H. Cornflakes can attest to.

QUICKIE III
To Casto,

To further what that person said about the translation of Japanese, my Dad has a saying for these kind of things: "Same s***t different bucket."
From,
The Living End

Andrew:
Thanks for sharing - you ARE the living end!



DA LAST GRUMBLE

And so, as we close the books on another week, let us look forward to the next with some anticipation, for not only will the pronunciation fun begin at some point thereafter, MMBN 4 will be out by then! As such, I think I'll have our resident doctor, the talented Mr. Vaitso, in to field your Mega Man-related queries on Friday or Saturday. Until such a time, keep the slime comfortable and well-insulated with a pile of letters, or else there will be no gold piece when you finally decide to splurge on that bamboo pole! Of course, why would you go and do that when delicious creamsicles can be had for a mere GP? It's a troubling issue...

castomel@rpgamer.com
Andrew Long will now retreat to Dimension X.

GOOG'LL PROVIDE THE ANSWERS, YOU PROVIDE THE

QUESTIONS


Sqweeeee!

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