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ASK ANDREW
Cool It, Cliffton September 30, 2005

Andrew Long - 19:30 EST

GRUMBLE. It was impressively windy today, almost a little too windy. Actually, it was definitely a little too windy; after seeing a blue box get nailed in the middle of a street in what appeared to be some sort of game of crazy van polo, I guess I should have had my guard up, but no. Possibly because it occurred before the incident with the recycling bin, getting decked in the face with a tree branch came as an entirely unexpected experience.

In conclusion, while I suppose residents of New Orleans have much more ample cause to say this, screw you, Nature!




L E T T E R S
Monday? What an interesting notion... Your email client is insane :)


i got a question for you. now i saw the info on secret of mana being remade. but im confused. can you exsplain to me one thing? is it for the gba or ds?

Sincerly
Paine


ANDREW


If by remade you are referring to the relaunch story posted yesterday, also not Monday, strangely enough, then I regret to inform you that no such remake is coming. There is a new DS title, Seiken Densetsu DS: Children of Mana and a fourth entry in the series proper, the thus far platformless Seiken Densetsu 4(which leads me to wonder exactly what Legend of Mana counted as), but I fear there is no remake. As such, you seem to have been thwarted again, my remake-loving reader. AHAHAHAHA!


New Zealand Dollards


Howdy,

Today I managed to score a copy of Suikoden 1 for $50 NZ (New Zealand) - that's about $30 US.

Today was a good day!

Seriously though - what is it about Suikoden that makes RPGamers go crazy?

- Xan


ANDREW

Thanks for sharing, Xanalith. I'm going to say it's the androgynous characters - it lets everyone experience that forbidden desire without the certainty of knowing it's actually forbidden, aside from those awful awful moments when you figure out that the character you've been dreaming about all day turns out to be a kobold. Not that that ever happened to me, of course...

KEEP READING!



Noveletter: the Engineering Edition


Long time listener, first time caller here. My questions are really just a silly way to avoid writing a paper that I might hand in tomorrow if I ever end up finishing it.

This question is really only relevant if you've ever studied Plato to any extent, but supposing that Plato was onto something when he postulated the Forms, what do you think the Form of RPG would be? More specifically, what would be the Form of RPG video games. In other words, what are the key identifying factors that are common throughout all RPG video games besides the label "RPG." I have some thoughts myself on the matter, but I find it interesting to pose such questions to others to see what they say.
ANDREW

Well, I did briefly study Plato last year, but judging by the mark I got on the essay concerning the Symposium, I did a lousy job of it, so I think I'll pass on speculating here.

Hmm. Next question. I don't actually have a next question yet, I still have to think of it. Ok, that's a good one. If RPG were a cereal, what would be the shape, color, flavor, and texture? Also, how would the company that makes RPG the breakfast cereal go about marketing it? Which would be a bigger selling point to you--graphics or storyline? And would you agree with me in equating storyline to nuitrition and graphics to flavor? If not, how would you make the comparison?
ANDREW

Umm...You know that Ritalin you're about to mention? Have you been dropping it? Because your question makes no sense, for the most part.

I'll limit myself to three questions. Because that paper really does need to be written tonight. Do you think it ridiculous that I am considering taking ritalin just so I can concentrate on playing RPGs? My friend says it is, but the fact of the matter is I just can't stay focused on playing video games anymore because I stopped taking medication for my ADD back in high school. Maybe the ridiculous part is that I don't consider taking it so that I can concentrate on my studies but for video games.
ANDREW

Yeah, that sounds kinda silly. Taking Ritalin recreationally isn't a great idea, for one thing; it's basically time-released amphetamine, which can wreak a fair amount of havoc on your innards. That being said, I would stick to using it to pay attention to all those lovely lectures about the relative density coefficients of steel and concrete that you're sure to enjoy to pieces.

Ok, this time I'll ask a serious question. I saw in today's qna column someone asked what the columnist believes to be the best program for creating RPGs but that part of the question was ignored. So I am re-asking that question: What do you believe to be the best program for creating RPGs? Personally, I have researched many different rpg makers in the past but the only one that has been very user-friendly so far are those in the RPG Maker series for PC, the most recent of which is RPG Maker XP. I should note, however, that I have found one other very interesting rpg maker and that is RPGDS, which is an acronym for RPG Development System I think. Anyway, this program, while still in development, seems like it will someday have an upper hand in the rpg making market. What do you think?

Steve,
Student of Engineering

ps. congrats to matt on his victory


ANDREW

Well, you've uncovered my dastardly scheme to ignore that question, Stevo. Fortunately for me, that plan can just as easily be enacted with you knowing about it, so on that note, please continue to wonder, because having never used such a program, I cannot give you a particularly good answer. Maybe your PS hero Matt will know...

Speaking of your PS hero, we've determined the days each of us will be updating. I'm going back to Friday through Sunday, and Matt will go Monday to Thursday, returning the week to its rightful parts. As such, Matt's first non-Idol column will appear on Monday, so Mattophiles get your lovin' ready!



DON'T #(%*#@ CALL ME ANDY


Hiya Matt or Andy,
ANDREW

Hello, (Rick) or DIE,

So Nintendo has said something to the effect that all their old games would be downloadable or some such. The fans went crazy about that, being able to play old SNES RPG's, old NES action games, N64 games that broke some ground.... but why hasn't anyone picked apart their statement?

Once Xbox said their best selling games would be playable people instantly delved into the statement and came up with something like recoded emulation of their best sellers. Like Halo, but probably not some of their other games. Now, I'm not an Xbox fan, mostly cause their RPG's are few and far between, and most of them are on computer(KOTR, Fable.. soon anyway). I am just thinking that possibly only those games that were developed by Nintendo will find their way to the Revolution? Does Nintendo retain the rights to republish all those games throughout Nintendo's history? Some of those companies are out of business now, who would get the profits from Nintendo selling the versions of them if that is the fact? Will Nintendo pay Square for the numerous downloads of FF6 and Chronotrigger?

Just a curious(skeptical) guy that uses ()'s too much

-(Rick)


ANDREW

Yes, I have often wondered about the same thing myself, but in the case of NES titles, at least, Nintendo retains licensing fees due to the draconian arrangement they forced companies to enter into in order to gain the privilege of Nintendo publishing their titles. That arrangement was largely null and void by the time the SNES rolled around, however, so you are correct to wonder about the likelihood of FFVI and CT showing up, because so far as I know Nintendo doesn't really have much control over those, much as I'm sure they'd just love to slap one of their greasy seals of quality on them again.



I'll take snap judgments for 200, Alex


What is your opinion of XSEED Games, and about how many companies in general are founded by ex-Square employees? Thank you.

ANDREW

I'm in favour of any company dedicated to increasing the RPGdom of North America, and Jun Iwasaki was a fairly prominent name back in the day, so somehow, I've got a feeling that they're going to be juuuuust fine.

...What? They just got sucked into an airplane engine? Well doesn't that just beat all. Now, your second question is highly idiotic, since there is no way to turn the occasional defections of rogue Square Enix employees into a general rate. I am sure, however, that what you MEANT to ask was "how many companies are there that have been founded by ex S-E employees", in which case I can answer you three that I can think of: Monochrome Squirrel Software, known to those who don't have crappy translation software as Monolith; Brownie Brown, the delightful scamps behind those crappy Seiken Densetsu clones and remakes that you all drink up like the slavering animals you are; and finally, XSeed. I'm sure there are probably one or two others (for instance, you could count Crave if you want to include Ted Woolsey in that number) but in general I am far too lazy to be more helpful than this. Ssssorry!



Arros continues to be lovably verbose


Hi there Castomel,

Question 1: Has anyone ever called you any weird name other than some variation of your real life name? Just curious because I've been called anything from Amariao to Amaro to Allejandro over the past few weeks and I've been pondering if the same fate befalled a normal named person occasionally
ANDREW

Yes, I have, and no, I'm not going to tell you what it was because it's a highly embarrassing nickname and if I'd known what it meant at the time I likely would have become rather pugnacious about the whole business. In any event, in the eighth grade I shook it and thus began the period of shifting nicknames, be they Erik the Red (for my sexy red pant-and-shirt ensemble) or Gadget Boy (apparently nobody liked my killer imitation of Dr. Claw). Then one year later, I fatefully and somehow mispelled my four-letter last name on a giant green piece of construction paper, and thus was born my current and forever nickname, Log.

Question 2: Do you think FFXII will be a set-class(like FF1, FF4, and FF9 where everyone has one or two things they are good at) or a customizer(like FF2, FF6, FF7, FF8, and FF10 where the characters outside of limits and skills sets are essentially the same by the end of the game) or a class changer(like FF3, FF5, FFT, FFTA, and FF10-2) so yeah Set class, customizer or class changer? I wanna know what you think Castomel
ANDREW

I think this is a thoroughly pointless question; not only is there no set pattern to the various systems, there has been little to no info released on this game, so anything I say will be pure speculation. That said, I'm gonna go with job simply because of the development team involved and the fact that the game is in the FFT world.

First off, since none of the contestants granted me a tilde, the quote on the front page comes from Growlanser II: The Sense of Justice, and is said by commander Byron on one of the alternant paths
ANDREW

Pretty sure someone else got that tilde already.

Secondly, I first voted for whoever posted my letters, as luck would have it it was Ross, then Matt up until the last week, where despite Bucket answering my letter I voted for Matt because 1. He's Canadian since Cast has done a great job, and 2. he isn't a fifth degree anime fan, sorry Bucket I'm only a second or third degree fan the fifth degree ones are usually the pricks that ruin series for those of us that don't download the series and movies and ovas, that complain cause we lower degree fanboys and girls don't know the name of the dude that voice so and so in season 3 etc type people on message boards, and 3. um uh I discovered people who give me food that isn't poisoned earn a free non stabbing to death card so um thanks for the cookies
ANDREW

Wow.. my job performance can determine a man's citizenship? Now that's power! Seriously though, determining a vote based on nationality is a little iffy (not to say that Matt won't do a great job, that's just a silly reason to vote ^^;;).

Thirdly my favorite battle theme is a toss up from the boss themes from FF7 and Invasion from within from Disgaea, if I was to ever fight random monsters and/or people I'd want themes from those games playing

os Raikou


ANDREW

Thanks for sharing, Arros.





C L O S I N G
IN CONCLUSION:

Muerp. My throat hurts and it better stop hurting before it becomes a cold or something. For tomorrow, what announcement out of TGS excited you the most? Is it a game? A company? A company's game? Surely you are interested in something, for without the laughter there can be no clowns, and a world without clowns is NO WORLD! And you know it.

castomel@rpgamer.com
Andrew Long has a scratchy throat and most definitely doesn't like it.

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