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   and IceSeraphim  
Googleshng - April 27 '01- 2:00 Eastern Standard Time

The fight music from the game I was playing while waiting for IS to answer makes it very hard to write an intro. That's why I muted it. Of course, now my intro is written.

IceSeraphim: Hiya all! I just got back from Earth Day when Goog emailed me the questions. I discovered that sunlight does NOT make me melt. Cool. There was also a bungee run where me and several friends proceeded to get whiplash and impacted vertebrea. Anyways, I'm a Computer Science major at Marist College. I played my first RPG way back when Phantasy Star IV came out. (Whenever that was.) Then I went on to Final Fantasy I, and it shot off from there... six years later when I actually got a Playstation. Anyways, I'm also into Anime, Action games like Tenchu and Heretic, and I fence Saber. *cough*. Yes, I have my own saber. That's nothing. My roomate has a katana at home. So stop looking at me wierd! Anyways, on to the Q&A!

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More on retranslating

Hi there!

This is for Glenn, who wants to attemp to translate Legend of Dragoon, a PSX game. You can find a good document on PSX games hacking here: http://www.zophar.net/trans/docs/thepsxdoc.txt . It is recommended that you have some experience in hacking games to try it... Good luck!

- Dr. Cossack

IceSeraphim:
Wow, cool. I've only messed around with a few game saves off my Dexdrive. It's good not to have the Hero from Suikoden I reffered to as Ecdohl. But I don't see why you would want to translate an already translated game. What would be the point? You can't distribute it, and you already know the dialouge. It seems like too much trouble for just a slight polishing of the dialouge.

Googleshng:
It's not really much more effort than, say, making decent anime music videos. Besides, even the most boring of games becomes great with a funny translation.

 
Speaking of funny translations...

Hi, First, I would like to thank you for helping me get the good Kingdom ending for Vanguard Bandits.

Googleshng:
You're welcome.

Second, is it just me or is that not the funniest RPG ever?

Googleshng:
I think MKR edges it out by quite a bit actually. "Remember, BOOM!"

Third, Are those true translations? I ask this because The Ruin ending has you facing The 69 Mechs with many many comments about them. May favorite of which is "Looks like I won't be 69ing anymore!"

Googleshng:
Not quite. They're Working Designs translations. While all the important content of the games they bring over are left pretty much intact, they have a tendancy to replace anything dull with really funny stuff. Then a lot of the important stuff they also make a bit silly. They rule.

Fourth, something not about Vanguard Bandits. As I'm sure you know Spring Semester is coming to an end. Since I have no job and only 2 summer classes I'm going to be spending a lot of time playing RPGs (insert joke about no life here) I was going to ask what I should play but I know it's a stupid question so I'm just going to let people know that I'm a loser.

Googleshng:
Attention everyone! This guy is a loser! More seriously though, towards the end of last year, mountains of gold appeared, mostly on the DC. Get all those games and play'em.

Fifth, how did you get your job doing the Q&A? How did the other people who occasionally do the Q&A get their chance? I know Jude (Chronodin) did it once but I always forget to ask him. Just curious.

That's all I have to ask... for now... but I shall return with even more questions!! Mwa ha ha!!

Googleshng:
A quick chain of e-mails went something like this: <Brad> Hey, I'm getting sick of doing Q&A, you wanna do it? <Google> Sure! Shouldn't Ronnie be inheriting weekdays though? <Brad> She actually prefers weekends, plus you're cool. Honestly it was pretty darn informal. In any case, if you ever have someone telling you you'll never get anywhere in life goofing off on your computer, just point to me... actually, don't. I'm a really bad person to model your life after. While I suppose making a webpage full of random vaguely humorous things CAN land you a nice high profile job, the odds are against you, especially since everyone and their dog has such a page now... and a webcomic. Don't make those either. Anyone else who has ever guest hosted this column is one of the following: An RPGamer staffer. A cool person I know. A participant in the whole Games for Guest spots thing.

IceSeraphim:
First, you're welcome... Oops, that was for Google.... Second and Third, It's Working Designs. The answers are probably and of course not. WD is the grand king of Americanization. Makes you wonder how serious the originals were....
I would highly suggest digging up a copy of Legacy of Kain: Blood Omen for the PC. (No load times!) It's a pretty fun Zelda style RPG. At least, I consider it an RPG. Another good one would be getting Baldur's Gate 1 and 2, cause 3's coming out his summer. And of course, I always recomend Front Mission 3, Suikoden, Kartia, and Lunar. Oh, and I got my Q&A spot by giving up a game that was languishing in my closet for years.

 
Random questions

Hey Google!

How ya doin?? Just got a few questions for ya:

1. Do you think there is even a small chance that squaresoft would release seiken densestsu 3 for the psx? How bout remakes of SD 1 and 2? Maybe I'm just a little anxious for Final Fantasy Chronicles.....

IceSeraphim:
1. I played the series on the Gameboy once... except that it was called Final Fantasy Legend. Oh well.

Googleshng:
Nonononono. SaGa 1-3 were translated as Final Fantasy Legend 1-3. SD 1 2 and 4 were translated as Final Fantasy Adventure, Secret of Mana, and Legend of Mana respectively. SD3 was never translated (except by fans), which sucks because it's quite possibly the best. Anyway though, considering their FF-centric philosophy at the momment, and the fact that SD4 really didn't do so well, there's no way you're going to see such ports unless someone at Square really does just sit around waiting for me to say something won't come and then announce it. 8)

2. If God is love, and love is blind, does this, therefore, make God blind?

IceSeraphim:
2. I am not blind!

Googleshng:
If that's true, then how does the whole Rezo/Shaburanigudo thing work out?

3. In suikoden, where are all the sound/window settings at? I only found one or two for each.

IceSeraphim:
3. As I recall, most are found by fighting specific monsters. They're rare, and won't be dropped often. Just go too major areas and fight a lot. I remember that they were all in major dungeons or castles.

Googleshng:
I recall very little from that game.

4. Do you know what happens if you let General Leo die in the battle against Kefka? I figured I'd try this one out (forgetting to save). I figured, heck, he's gonna die in about 5 minutes anyways. So I let Kefka beat me in the battle.....and I got a game over! (Ok...so it's not really a question.....but still)

Well...I think that's about it. Thanks!

Paco
"Just because you never hear anyone complain doesn't mean that all parachutes open 100% of the time"

IceSeraphim:
4. Sniff.... Final Fantasy six.... Ah... memories.... Wait, I played that last year...
And I'll have you know that noone with a broken parachute has ever come back to the airfield!

Googleshng:
You can actually live through a fall without a parachute, you just probably won't. Oh, and yeah, the Leo bit's interesting.

 
HERE'S an old game!

Google and IceSeraphim,

I thought since you both are reputed to know your Phantasy Star that you could help me with this one. I'm playing the original, and I've found all the Laconian stuff, I have the aeroprism, the crystal, and the laerma nuts. Now I don't know what to do. I assume I'm about at the end, but I don't see Lassic, and every time I try to make Myau eat the nuts, he's not hungry. Anyway, can you guys give me a hint about what I should be doing? Many thanks.

-jaraph "I play old games"

IceSeraphim:
Shoot! The one I haven't played! I've only read extensive plot summaries...

Googleshng:
You can't just use the nut anywhere, it has to be at the top of the tower of Baya Malay, after using the prism to reveal the castle. The crystal factors in too I think, but I don't recall how, since I haven't played PS in something like 10 years... well, I have, just not that part.

 
Big multiparter

Hi mighty Google! (sorry, I don't have a monk choir backing me up ^_^)

Here's a couple of questions that I'd appreciate you answering.

1) I'm considering buying a RPG from a friend. He's willing to sell Vandal Hearts, Tales of Destiny and Thousand Arms. Which _one_ do you think I should buy and why?

IceSeraphim:
1. Never played Tales of Destiny, Thousand Arms is just a Dating Sim and fighting engine thrown together, and Vandal Hearts is pretty darn cool. My roomate was playing that last year. Looked good.

Googleshng:
ToD is like Star Ocean 2, but older. Thousand Arms is a Dating Sim/RPG that I'm told isn't very good, despite being from the makers of Sakura Wars. Vandal Hearts is one of my favorite games. Of course, I AM a drooling TRPG freak, so maybe you shouldn't go by me.

2) Currently I'm debating whether I should get a Dreamcast now or wait until the PS2's prices drop. Which one should I get?

IceSeraphim:
2. Ooh! Tough one. I would recomend the Dreamcast, since it'll be a bit before a) The PS2 price drops and b) good games come out for it. The DC already has quite a library built up for it, and is looking good for another year. And most of the games I want should be released on the PC as well. Except Tenchu 3, but that's not an RPG.

Googleshng:
What he said. Besides, Skies of Arcadia must be played by all.

3) How come there's only Dating Simulations for Guys and not for girls? Girls need some bishounen too!

IceSeraphim:
3. I can make one for you. Man, that would REALLY earn me an A in my Theory of Programming class. It's due in one week, and I haven't even started....

Googleshng:
Uh... because traditionally it's guys who ask girls out? The whole concept seems wrong to me in the first place. It's one thing to blow off having a social life so you can sit around and play games, but when the games you play simulate having a social life, you really might as well just cut out the middle man. You know?

4) Did Threads or Fate really suck? I actually played the whole damn game to get those extra options and I found myself disappointed. Such a crappy ending, but the game itself was fun. Still, I chucked it out the window.

IceSeraphim:
4. Haven't played it.

Googleshng:
I played the demo. I really wasn't very impressed.

5) What sort of books do you read? Is Philip Pullman good?

IceSeraphim:
5. I used to read those Star Wars Novels, then stopped reading. Now I'm starting on Micheal Crichton's Timeline, and I'm borrowing the Gabriel Knight novelization one of my roomies got.

Googleshng:
I don't recall ever reading anything by Philip Pullman. Three really spiffy authors off the top of my head: Roger Zelazny, Larry Niven, Orson Scott Card.

6) This isn't really RPG-related but hell, it concerns videogame players.

I read a recent article (which can be found here: http://dailynews.yahoo.com/h/cn/20010424/tc/columbine_families_sue_gaming_companies_1.html) on the Net and it seems that the parents of the victims are going to raise a lawsuit war with major videogame companies. Now, I don't know about some people, but I find it incredulous, though I can't say that I wasn't expecting it.

So, I just wanted to know, what are your two cents about these parents' actions?

Anyways, that's it! Thanks a bunch for answering my questions! ^_^

Card Captor Jun
"Li-kun!!"

IceSeraphim:
6. Oh man, you didn't want to ask me that question. I am an avid player of first and third person shooters, and I have one thing to say to those people.
Look at me!
I rock in those games. I can execute a series of stealth kills and take out an entire room in seconds. Problem is, I have a tad problem aiming in real life. I've tried, I suck. Recoil always gets me. And even though I outlasted an entire party full of people at Bushido Blade, I finish dead last when I fence those same people for real. I even use the same weapon. Using a mouse and keypad does not train you in the finese and skill it takes to *use* the weapon. Plus, have these parents looked at Doom? It's two dimensional. Weapons are aimed for you, and the violence is extremely cartoonish. Dear God, if they think Doom was a military training simulator, then I fear for our armed forces. They'll shoot one bullet into the room, then duck out and expect the enemy to shoot eachother.

Googleshng:
First off, uh, didn't that lawsuit already happen, like, 2 years ago? Didn't it flop on the grounds of being a rediculous misplacement of blame? Oh, and IS, it's not an issue of games teaching you how to kill, as far as making you want to kill. Anyway, if the people starting these lawsuits and watchdog movements want to know my opinion, which of course they don't seeing as I'm... biased? No, that's not what I was looking for... extremely experienced and informed on the matter, that's it. Anyway, the effect of violence in videogames on children can be summed up in one word: Catharsis. Everyone gets violent urges. In order to avoid going on killing sprees, one must vent these urges. This can be done in a number of ways. One can pick fights with people, one can play sports (which, guess what concerned parents, are actually all evolved from military training exercises), one can watch horrificly violent movies, plays, or other works of fiction, or of course, one can play videogames. So, if little Jimmy comes home from school, after being picked on, and he's full of frustration, he'll want to vent that by beating up his little sister, playing that ultra-violent game his parents don't like him playing, or he can keep it bottled up until it reaches the point where he'll take his parents' gun and ventilate some classmates. I think we can all agree the game is the best release there. Want some proof of this? I've been playing all manner of video games since I was in a stroller, have them in my face constantly, was seriously picked on by both students and teachers in school, and not only have I never gone on a killing spree, I have never resorted to violence in any form, in any situation, and spend all my free time helping everyone around me in various ways. All my friends who also grew up on games are the same way. In fact, the only person I know with any violent tendancies is the one who wasn't allowed to play videogames. He's just shy of a mass murderer.

 
16 bit power!

Guugureshingu,

Direct katakana to romanji is not a pretty thing...
Maybe it's just me, but I thought the Super NES era was the ultimate for RPGs, at least in quality if not in quantity. Anyway, from what I've been seeing, it looks like the GBA might mark a return to those happy days of old. What I was wondering was whether you think the system will enjoy extensive continued support in the role-playing area. Sega alone could produce enough quality games to warrant the system's purchase, but I'm just wondering what your take on the strength of third party support is. Thanks.

-jaraph "I play old games"

IceSeraphim:
I think it's the best thing since sliced bread! Sliced bread having been invented the previous year. (My obligatory random Simpsons quote) I think that it will definitely help the market for older RPG's. A lot of them are still very impressive. And hey, you already sent in a question. You double dipper, you.... ^_^

Googleshng:
Yeah, the GBA gives people an excuse to make 16-bit RPGs again. Of course I don't think 16-bit RPGs are great because they're 16-bit so much as because people still made fairly challenging games back then... dagnabit! I want Fantasy Zone DC!

 
Greatest game

Great Answerer Googleshng,
I have just recently come across this site and I must say that it is THE most informative and interesting RPG and game-related (but really, is there any other game besides the RPG?!) site ever. And although you cannot claim credit for them, you have accumulated the greatest Fanfics i've ever read.
But enough flagrant flattery, I have a question which may cause chaos in this already unstable planet on which we live.
In your opinion, and I ask you this because I assume you are THE expert on this (i hope), what is the greatest RPG of all time? To be a little more fair, which game has left the biggest impression on you?

Although I dont expect you to answer this because of its absoluste absurdity and disrespect toward the genre, because its unfair to ask you to choose which is best, I kindly thank you for your time......if you took the time to read this that is.

Matt (the only kid without a PS.....)

IceSeraphim:
Any other game!? You sir, have insulted the Real Time Strategy, First person shooter, and Adventure genres! And Driver, can't forget that. Half-life, Deus Ex, Warcraft, and the godly Tenchu series all demand apoligies. But really, I love this site too! I think the absolute greatest RPG ever was Phantasy Star IV. Sheer beauty. And a $99 price tag? Wow, am I glad they knocked $60 off the price a year later. It made me fall in love with the genre. I played it nonstop and completed it about 5 times the summer I got it. Then my Sega broke..... *dead silence*..... oh well, I still had my Nintendo.
And dude, lay off the humility. It's making me blush.... Oh, he was talking to Goog..... nuts....

Googleshng:
First off, I must say that this is the most obsequious letter I have ever seen. Reading it may have given me cavities. On to your question and a half though, biggest impact is easy. Phantasy Star. The original. Aside from being my first RPG, it pretty much defined the genre. Come to think of it, I can't think of a single thing that's commonplace in today's RPGs that isn't present in Phantasy Star. Not even big budget high quality graphics cut scenes. Granted, they're animated these days, but it has some nice looking stuff for an 8-bit game. BEST game is a tougher call, since different games have different high and low points. The best I can do at the momment is mention the best RPG I can think of in terms of overall execution/balance/just being plain fun in the last 5 years is Skies of Arcadia.



Quickies

EE, that guy who was asking about Square songbooks, could find a bunch >>at Animebooks.com. They have a whole section of sheet music.
>>
>> ~Mesaana
>> "Mmm, fluffy!"

IceSeraphim: Yup yup yup. Sheet music is good. I have a roomate that can play anything I give him the music for.... Google: Handy info

The Last Laugh:

IceSeraphim: Wow, that was kinda fun. Took a while too. You really are a hard worker, Goog. If anyone has Suikogaiden I or II, or Rockman Collection 2,3, or 5 for the PSX, I will relinquish my space as guest-host. If not, then you're stuck with me for another week! Bwah ha ha ha ha!

Google: Egads it's late. Halfway through writing this, from out of the blue, in pops Brad Lohr. Remember him? Used to do this job, then gave it to me and left, then came back, then left again? Evindently there's a minimum time requirement of 2 hours on talking about old times. I'll have to have him guest host some time. Anyway, have a good weekend everyone.

Googleshng "Hibachi is good." @rpgamer.com
Ever see a Hibachi chef with a TRAINEE nametag? It's pretty freakin' unsettling.

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