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  A Blast from the Past. Visit the archives.

Ask Mike

    Here I am. I know this is a little late, so lets cut to the chase, shall we? :>
    The Final Fantasy V questions seemed to be the most popular one to have responses. I guess that is the case when you screw up. As so many of you pointed out, the CG pictures are different because Yoshitaka Amano drew them that way. Due do the graphical limitations of the Super Famicom, I guess Square went with other colors. I actually thought about this as I was looking over my FFVI manual (I don't have an FFV one, for obvious reasons). I knew about the original drawings, but I couldn't place the artist's name. Thanks everyone for filling me in.

The postfix fix

Hey Mike,

When you mean postfix do you mean expressions like "55, 4, 5, +, 6, *, -"? This is equivalent to the infix expression "55 - ( 4 + 5 ) * 6" where the answer is 1.

If so, programming the code is pretty straightforward in C++. You have to use a stack (and possibly a symbol table). Hopefully you know about object oriented programming as it pertains to creating "stack" objects.

When you see an operand, you push the operand onto the stack.
When you see an operator, you do several steps:
1. Pop the operand from the stack into a temp. variable (eg float A).
2. Pop the next operand from the stack into another temp. variable. (eg float B)
3. Perform the operation on the 2 variables using the operator you just read in.
4. Store the result into another temp. variable (eg float answer).
5. Push the result (float answer) onto your operand stack.

If you keep doing this, your stack will eventually end up with one operand. That operand is your final answer. For error checking, you have to make sure that there are no more operators in your expression when you have only one operand left in your stack.

Let's use my first expression as an example. The steps in evaluation will be: "55, 4, 5, +, 6, *, -"
"55, 9, 6, *, -"
"55, 54, -"
"1"

About the symbol table. You may need to make one if you want to convert an infix expression to postfix. You will need 2 stacks to do a conversion like this. One stack to store operands, the other to store operators.

Good luck.

Mike: Uhm.. wow. Thanks. I'm supposed to think of all this while crammed in a desk where the designer was 4 feet tall and built to his size? So much for the glamorous college scene. Where are those bombshell blondes that I saw in all those B grade movies? DId TV lie to me after all? Say it isn't so.

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention. That was only the fourth page of a seven page test. Yay.

Woo, Stats!

To correct a tiny fault in the last Circle of Sages article concerning Butz's age, I feel it necessary to point everyone to Squaresoft's official FFV site at this site. For anyone who don't have a shift-JIS program and can't read the information provided, the stats of the 5 characters are listed as thus:
Butz, 20yrs, 176 cm, 58kg
Faris, 20yrs, 172 cm, 53kg
Galuf, 60yrs, 168 cm, 64kg
Lenna, 19yrs, 161 cm, 45kg
Krile (Cara for those playing the emulation), 14yrs, 154 cm, 40kg

And as for the character designs in the FFV FMVs, remember that they are based on the original Yoshitaka Amano designs (does ANYONE use the games section of RPGamer anymore and look at the Square artwork for FFV?), and also remember that Cecil too had white hair, so this isn't new to FF :). Have a nice day ^^. Shinryuu

Mike: While everyone told me about the hair, Shin here told me the stats that I didn't know, even if I do have the enlightened shift-JIS browser. Of course, being able to read it would probably help that. I'm trying!

Brain stabilizer pills?

      What does lurk in your head? Molded pizza? A little image of Tifa Lockheart? (I know what lurks in mine! Vincent!! *drool*) I was just wondering. Hm, maybe I should get a job..

Mike: A job? Ewww.. oh, wait. I have many... damn. What lurks in my head? That is what this column is all about, right? Well, at least for today. I am actually regretting ever giving up the illustrious post of RPGuru. But then I'd have to be witty all the time, and those anti-social genes in my body would revolt, and what a mess that would be.

      One thing. I miss Joshua Reid. You know, the guy with the multiple personalities. Whatever happened to him? He was supposed to set me up on a date with Victor, the bum. (Not that I don't like u, Mike!! You're one of the kewler Sages!!)

Mike: Well, thanks. I try to please all you out there. Josh simply couldn't keep up. He overworked himself trying to keep up with this column everyday. The mail pile can be huge. I bet he saw his grades for last semester, and simply made the hard choice.

      What's this? A Final Fantasy movie void of magic? What? And it has aliens? What? And it's set with none of the familiar FF characters? What? What? What? I'm beginning to sound like a light bulb? Forget it, the joke's old....argh!
      Why don't you ever post a person's screen name? Or their e-mail address? Some people love to get mail on what other people think, so...

Mike: Uhm, we always post the screen name, or nickname, or whatever they "sign" the latter with. There isn't a reason why we don't post the email address, except that we simply don't. Never had anyone ask that before, so I guess it never came up.

      Thanks for listening to my rambling. Oh, and thanks for posting it, too! (heh heh. now you have to post it. oh wait...maybe not. D'oh!!)
      Luv u guys!!, Katana Habuki (Ryoko720@aol.com)
      Post my e-mail address! Post it! Post it!! Post-it notes!!! Heh heh heh.......d'oh!! I've been attacked by a lame joke! Argh, Arthur, inform the Knights that the Holy Grail is under my mattress...no, wait....I melted it down to pay for my brain stabilizer pills. Forget it.

Mike: There you go, your email address for everyone to adore and use? Who knows.

Mike, the Artist... I wish

I finally finished Brood Wars last night and I saw your name in the credits! Is it actually you? If it is, then I'd like to congratulate you on a job well done.

Sean Kepper

Mike: This question actually amazes me, mostly because more than one person asked it.
      Let me ask a few questions here:

  • Have you ever seen me post artwork in Lorelai's section?
  • Did you see me mention StarCraft in the bios pages? Oh wait.. we're still working on that. Sorry.
  • If I was working on StarCraft (and making "Real Money"), do you think I'd spend countless hours running a 2-bit page like this? Wait, don't answer that.
While I'd love to take credit, it's simply not mine to take. I commend all those who made SC such a kickass game (well fitting, because my brothers kick my ass at it anytime).

CT 2? Of course!

How come the column for the 13th wasn't added till like after noon on the 14th (today)?

Mike: Cached main page? The CoS for the 13th was up by 5 PM on that day.

Anyway...I have a question. Seriously, please. What are the actual chances of a Chrono Trigger 2? I still cherish the first one...and I thought it left a lot of room for a sequel, With Magus searching for what's her name (I forgot her name, how could I...) and all.

--Matt Elder

Mike: According to this news story (nothing like using your own site for a source, eh?), CT2 is definately in the works. Square has also left other hints lying around that this is true. Like everyone else who played the first, a sequel would rock.

Stuff:
Many people said to use fire spells against CT's Twin Golems, and equip the Ruby Vests. // Rail Cayder wanted to express his discontent with Shadow Madness. I've played about 30 min of my demo, and I think it rocks. Maybe the OPM version sucks? I dunno. // More people ask why Square and others don't release OST's in the US. I wish I knew. I think it would be great, avid collector that I am. // Booga wants to know since I'm "in charge", who's second? No one really. We're not really into heirarchy, per se. I'm not even in charge, except I pretend I'm organized. // Why don't we have a counter? Because they suck. They are not statistacally accurate, and having a counter on your front page saying 14 million or whatever is simply too much of an ego boost for us to deal with. :D // jonny asks what to get for his birthday, Lunar or Legaia. Lunar! Nothing against Legaia, but Lunar's beta rocked, and is simply THE game this spring.

Whew. I feel so trendy.
This was actually lots of fun. If you tell anyone I said that...
-Mike "The Man" Tidwell

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