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ASK ANDREW
Mmm... Tangy Clam Meat! May 14th, 2005

Andrew Long - 1:23 EST

GRU. If I make myself sick fretting over the intricacies of travel by air (and I'm well over halfway there), I'm going to be very irritated with myself, because this is a pretty unreasonable thing to do. Either way, just two days until E3, and it looks like the dead zone for news has finally been busted into.

In other news, if you're wondering at the titles of certain Xbox-related letters, let me regale you with a tale of my eleventh-grade photography class. You see, in that class, there was a certain fellow who we shall call... Sergio, and Sergio, in the absence of a real camera or any interest in passing any of his courses, opted to bring only a pencil to class. During the day, he would sit there, stuttering, and periodically take his pencil, toss it in the air, call out "360 flip!" and then mash it back to the desk with his palm. As you might well imagine, this left a lasting impression with me, after I was able to stop laughing at him.




L E T T E R S
Terr-enigma


Hi gang.

I've been searching for a while, but I havn't been able to find any game that resembles Terranignma. Could you recommend any for me, preflembly ones that made the oceanic region.

By the way, anyone who complains about japanese games not being ported over, should realise that those of us living in the oceanic region are lucky if we get games that reach the rest of the PAL area.


ANDREW


Hmm... Well, having never played Terranigma, I can't really give you my personal take on the matter, but according to a random review I pulled, the gameplay resembles Secret of Mana in some respects, so there's somewhere to start. I should also mention that Terranigma is one of those rare cases where the PAL region got a title that North America didn't, so to you I say boourns.


Hmm...


Was wondering if you or anyone else on the RPGamer staff encountered a problem in Final Fantasy 8 where the magazines in the game don't appear where they should? I've been using the official guide and have followed it faithfully and whenever it shows the spot for a new magazine its not there, I've compared the pictures in the guide to the TV screen and yet no luck and they never seem to appear at all during the game. I've checked Gamefaqs among other sources and seen nobody else seems to have this problem

Thanks Much


ANDREW

If you can't find evidence of anyone else having had this problem, and you are absolutely sure that your walkthrough is accurate, then the only suggestion I can offer you is that your copy of the game is somehow flawed. The trouble is, I can't really think of any wear-and-tear that would cause such a problem to occur.



360 flip


Castomel,

You couldn't have possibily expected any better from the likes of MTV, right? I was hoping to see more than 6 seconds of gameplay at once, but obviously that's not as important as 2 musical performances from some flavor of the week band.
ANDREW

No, I should mention that at the outset; I really didn't expect much better from MTV. I just sort of hoped, I guess.

But I digress, the 360 seems like it will be a decent console. I don't really care about "skinning" my console but whatever. As for the mandatory wireless controllers, (you may or may not have seen Gamespot's "Xbox360 Inside & Out by, or in lieu of this whole 'e-mail' system you have set up, someone else may have mentioned it already.) you can hook up said Controllers to the USB ports on the front of the console itself to "trickle charge" it while playing. Which is most probably what I will be doing, if in fact I decide to pick up this console. Two Mistwalker titles does make it quite tempting, however I will reserve judgement until I know more about the upcoming games. The console itself, seems more than adequate.
ANDREW

The driblets of information that Sakaguchi revealed yesterday have definitely piqued my interest, and the fact that he seems to have Uematsu in his hip pocket is a definite plus. Depending on the price point of this sucker and whether or not some more decent titles (aka not what we were shown Friday morning) appear, I will definitely be gung-ho for the 360.

Anyways, my question regards none of this. As I am interested as to your take on this Atelier Iris game that will be making it to the West come the end of this month. I'm fairly intruiged by it. What do you think?

-Justin Q


ANDREW

Again, I haven't played the game, so my knowledge of it is somewhat limited; however, given the fact that the series has attracted a fairly significant following in Japan, I would think that there is probably some element of the gameplay that will make it worth your while. Since I don't know for sure, however, I will go the way of caution and recommend a rental.



Squoingy, Squoingy!


Hey Cast or Goog,

I've been following the Stella Dues info since I first heard about it and almost everything I'd seen said it was a great game and was going to be a really good play. Then I read today's RPGamer review of it and got worried. I tend to agree with the majority of the reviews you guys put out so seeing a 2 out of 5 for the score has me wondering. What is your take on the game?

-- Kalledon --


ANDREW

As I may or may not have mentioned a few times of late, I am ridiculously poor and have therefore been unable to afford things like videogames of late. On the upside, I do have instant access to Paws, so I have lured her here with the promise of catnip and a tasty mouse to answer your question (or at least, talk about her review). Paws?

PAWS


Well, my review should give a pretty clear idea of what the problems with the game were but let me try to sum it up quickly: while the battle system works in theory it has some very real flaws once you actually get into it. The storyline is awesome but the emphasis of the game isn't on the story. The copy I played had a bug in it. Overall, the game is kinda boring and when you throw in requisite grinding with boredom it spells doom.

ANDREW


Sounds pretty straightforward to me...Still, if you think Paws has somehow missed out on something, I offer you the same advice I gave the last writer: rent, rent, rent. Seriously, I can't say that enough! Renting a game allows you to pass judgment on it without sacrificing forty or fifty bucks beforehand, and if you're anything like me you don't have forty or fifty bucks to throw around every day, so isn't it better to part with ten instead?


360 flip! 360 flip!


To Andrew,

Last month, I saw a leaked picture of what the Xbox 360 was rumored to look like on Gamespot. http://www.gamespot.com/news/2005/04/22/screens_6122804.html?page=1 My friends and I got a good laugh when we saw, and I couldn't believe how some people could think that the Xbox 360 would have such a ridiculous looking design unless Microsoft wanted to embarass themselves. So imagine my dismay when I watched the unveiling of the 360 last night and saw that it is indeed how the system looks. What's with that concave design? The makers said it's supposed to look like the system is inhaling, since it should give off that "gasping" feeling to people who see it and are awed by it's sexiness to a point that they are short of breath. WTF???
ANDREW

I'm guessing they did some market research and discovered that the number one complaint about the original Xbox was the fact that its ergonomic qualities were closely matched by those of a giant slab of concrete. As such, I'm guessing they went with a "futuristic, sleeker look, to maximize the aesthetic dynamic optimization of the global networking paradigm!" or something.

Ok, so aside from the inhaling-white-PC-that-can-also-lie-down look (the power button even looks like that of a PC), I was also dismayed by the announced games for the system. You see, there's Tomb Raider: Legend, The Godfather, Need for Speed: Most Wanted, Scarface, King Kong, Splinter Cell 4, Madden 2006, Ghost Recon 3, and Tony Hawk's American Wasteland, among others. But there's something you should know about these particular games: they're going to be released on the current consoles first. Does this mean that about half of the 360's early titles will just be ports of current-gen games with better graphics? Why can't developers just make original games for a system that is so much more powerful? I guess they're just too lazy to study the specs of the Xbox 360, so they just port their 2005 games to the system just so they can say that they are first to make Xbox 360 games and milk a little extra cash from these games. Again, WTF???

So yeah, I'm definately with you on this Andrew.

Alan, hoping the Playstation 3 and Revolution can do better

P.S. I also agree with what you said about Matt Leto. Win $80,000 and the guy becomes an egotistical crybaby.


ANDREW

Eh, you worry too much Alan. Launch titles always suck; remember Orphen, Summoner, or Eternal Eyes? If you don't, there's a good reason for it. Just remember that any titles likely to be worth playing for the 360 had no hope of appearing in that program, and that each of the upcoming systems will have its fair share of EA trash to appeal to the crowd that thinks the Killers are a lasting musical influence.



Hmm.. apparently the proper elements of a sentence are no longer required in the constructing such


To the Q&A Guru.

my thoughts is i dont want to see the gba list you made for the NDS. from my point of view the NDS sucks and if it should be on anything it should be on the GBA or PSP

now said that. your rock

Later

Paine
Paine:Bring it on punks


ANDREW

Thanks for sharing, Paine. May I humbly inquire as to what everything you said after "PSP" means?



Le sigh


dear qweermo jerkenstein

So a little touch7y about the nazi thing maybe we stumbled on your dark little secret err other dark little secret you closet case but that's beside the point im going to make today. when can I start my column for this site its been over a month since my app was turned in see if you can grease the wheel for me a little bit. will I actually get a free psp from the ads on your site?
ANDREW

See, I already told you. You didn't fill out the app properly, so you don't get a job. Please stop asking. As for the PSP ad, I don't vouch for our advertising, since I am in no way involved in its acquisition or posting.

Im having this problem lately when I downl;oad porn im getting all this spyware? do you get that when you download gay porno or is it only the straight porno that im downloading?
ANDREW

Downloading anything from a site you're not 100% familiar with is an open invitation to spyware, my friend, but porn sites, as always, are on the leading edge of internet skulduggery, so I would suggest you either be more careful or find content that you don't need to download to um... enjoy.

I think ark the lad is an awesome game at least on the ps1 dont know about the new one. I could never get into bahumat lagoon dont know why. seiken denitsu 3 for that matter maybe its just the fact that I have to play them at the computer its not the same. im looking forward to the translation of shining force 3 for the saturn that should be coming out soon but I think that's because I can play it on my actual system. we should play halo 2 some time my scrrename is mookwarrior.
ANDREW

Afraid I don't have Halo 2, but thanks for the offer.

what drives people too play mmorpgs they never have compelling stories all you do is go kill sleep kill sleep killleeep the only driving force I can see is the greedy desire to be better than other people. that's both the use of pride and greesd I think that mmorpgs are a scam of the devil to make us go to hell so he can collect more souls . oh well tune in next week when my topic will be....something mean and rambling

Mookwarrior
Mookie
Mokiesan
Mookito
Mochey
Dmookman
Lord mook
:) mook


ANDREW

MMORPGs are much like any other addiction, unfortunately. The reward for using them is far outstripped by the crushing amount of time you have to pour into them, and in the end they hurt you more than they help you, but once you get started, you just can't stop, for whatever reason. In the case of my mage, it is the prospect of a certain unique set of armour found only in a high-level dungeon.



Is there anyone left on the internet who can speak English?


Dear Mr. Andrew.

I just want to say that i believe your mind its a lil closed and all, bla, bla.... (I really hate you for hating vagrant story)
ANDREW

So I have a closed mind because I dislike a game you happen to like. Fascinating insight.

Now onto the questions:
1. Why hate the xbox crap on mtv(crapstravaganza)??? mtv insults by themselves on their own... but I was thinkin... With this new Xbox90 x 4, are we going to see GOOD rpgs(after all we will have nintendo and playstation), you think thats possible coming from a microsoft console(and no i dont have any "yays" for that Mistwalker thing, Sakaguchi had his time and he screwed it)?
ANDREW

Shrug. If you're going to shut your mind out to the only two RPGs that have been announced, then no, there probably aren't going to be any good ones, because you'll be too busy ignoring them to catch on.

2. Second comes.... why you hate Vagrant Story(Ive readed of such hate but i don't know the reasons)? I've always tought that constructive critics are for stupid people so tell me your very destrucive critic about that game!
ANDREW

Sorry, dude, I have only constructive criticisms like sluggish gameplay, unintuitive controls, poor spacing of save points, and a battle system that just shouldn't have been.


3. That thing about the nonreleased games over this continent... Well I just want to note that being intransigent its very stupid... Because Games are made for different tastes as well as everything else... And i feel very bad and wrong to read such claims from you (I do have a lil respect for your comments), and most of the time people read this kind of game webs for advice and your ways might make a certain person loose a very great time with certain game just because you hate it... Because that person might not be you and that certain person could actually enjoy certain... Crap many certain things here... Im not from any anglo country so excuse me... but "yah" you got the point...

"Migthy o migthy me"
P.S. "Rants, rants, rants, hor, her, har, har, har!!!" if you hate me because of what ive have sayed in this letter.... well that make us even, mwahahaha!


ANDREW

Actually, I don't get the point. I don't think anyone's opinion of Seiken Densetsu 3, which I assume is the game that so irks you, was affected by that list, because Seiken Densetsu 3 is generally loved by most people on the internet. If people choose to hate it just because I tell them to, they're too stupid to deserve to enjoy it anyway, so I don't see how that's my problem. Anyone who forms an opinion based upon reading only one person's ideas on something has no business doing so, in my view.



:D


Hey Andrew,

So I was watching Captain Planet this moring and thought that it would make a good RPG. Now I know this is odd but the show is about 5 kids with magic rings summoning a guy to fight evil (Although they would need to replace that kid with heart ring because he is absolutely useless). That is pretty close to many RPGs. What really got me to that line of thinking was how on the show I watched the wind girls cousin actually died of a drug overdose. That's some pretty heavy stuff for a cartoon which pretty much every other episode comes down to don't litter. Anyway which old cartoon do you think would make the best RPG.

Strife
"By your powers combined I am Captain Planet!"


ANDREW

I think you could make a killer T-RPG out of Smurfs, but I would have to go with Thundercats, because the Thundercats are pure awesome and there are enough of them to make a full-fledged party. They also come with a villain built in, and that villain even has his very own dungeon.





C L O S I N G
IN CONCLUSION:

Well, it's off to E3 for me. Just for kicks, I ask you: ponder the last question there. What cartoon do you think would make a great RPG (and crap like Pokemon and Yu-Gi-Oh and anything else that is either based on a game or has already led to one is disqualified for obvious reasons) and why? Send Google your answers and most of all your love! <3

castomel@rpgamer.com
Andrew Long is on the run.


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