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   Unexpected Seriousness  
Googleshng - February 7 '02- 2:00 Eastern Standard Time

So there I am, getting ready to do the column in a silly mood, when I see a very long, and very serious letter from a relative of mine. Now I've replied to that though, so if you'll give me a moment to mentally shift gears...

(Giant pink hampsters destroying the city, killing small animals so you can learn to sing, HEY! There's 30 new games sitting on my floor!)

OK, that did it. Let's go!

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Uh...

Hello oh great googleness, got 1 question for you. Now that FFX International has come out can we here in northamerica run an imported copy or do we still need a mod chip setup? Im asking because it's in english and all that!

Thanks

David Hackman
Ps. Your ears are getting longer

Googleshng:
While I personally could never justify the cost of importing the english-release of a game in Japan when it was sitting right there in the US, the fact stands that a game released in Japan is going to run on a Japanese system, not on a U.S. system, period. So, FF10 International would not run on an unmodified U.S. PS2.

 
Many many misconceptions

Hi Goog!

I've heard a lot of things about Arc of the Lad, I've seen a lot of pics and I still don't know if it is a good game (I should say gameS... I know)

I know it's a remake, so the original was probably a succes if they rerelease it... but that's just my guess.

What do you think of Arc of the Lad, is it worth buying and why?

Thanks a lot!

Mister Art

Googleshng:
OK. Arc the Lad Collection is NOT a remake or rerelease of a game. It's a series of THREE games, which were never released in the U.S. to begin with. When the translation rights for AtL3 went up, Working Designs grabbed them on the condition that they could snag the first 2 too. So, that one slightly pricey package has three games, one of which is pretty new, and none of which are remakes.

As for whether it's worth buying, well, baring pure masochism, the fact that WD is taking the trouble to translate that much at once, at the expense of not releasing a thing for a year, would indicate the series is very much worth playing. If you want a more grounded opinion, we should have a review up release day.

Finally, you should never use the logic that "the original was probably a succes if they rerelease it" when deciding whether to buy a game. Publishers will rerelease ABSOLUTE GARBAGE from time to time, particularly when they're bundling a bunch of games together. Want proof? Look at any "Classic" Arade Collection. They tend to be one or two true classics, bundled with 3 or 4 pieces of trash that most people have never even heard of, for good reason.

 
Who's Who Part 1

Square's old CEO was some guy named Suzuki right? But wasn't Square Hinronbu Sakaguchi's company at the start of the Final Fantasy series? Because it was his 'Final Fantasy' and the company's last chance right? I hate to think that if I started a company and created the largest and most popular game series in an entire genre of videogaming that my company would be taken over by someone else?

And it's not like he has too much to do with the games, after FF7 he's only listed as 'exectutive producer' which in my opinion is just some guy who appoints who is to do what job (though I have little buisness knowledge). At least in the earlier games he had the title of 'based on the story by', 'producer', and I'm sure others...

T-Rice (Doug)

Googleshng:
A lot of people often make this mental association that the most famous name within a company is directly responsible for everything it does. Like the time I had someone talking about all the games Bill Gates would be making for the Xbox. Another thing that comes from the sloppiness of speech is the notion that "Square" is one company. In business terms, it's technically about uh... 5? The one where Sakaguchi is pretty high up is Squaresoft, the actual developer. Not Square-EA, as the Japanese publisher is currently known. He didn't start the company, and for that matter, he didn't create "the largest and most popular game series in an entire genre" either. The Ultima series has always been a bit larger, and the Dragon Quest series has actually always been a bit more popular. Plus the whole thing about where the name of the FF series came from is that if it wasn't a success, Sakaguchi was going to give up on the business, not Square as a whole.

Finally, your summation that the executive producer of a game has nothing to do with it is quite quite wrong. Generally, if that's the only thing someone is billed as, it means they aren't really getting their hands dirty, but they're still calling all the shots.

 
Who's Who Part 2

Hello Googleshng,
just wanted to answer to rustybaseball, who asked if it was the first time Squaresoft used german in a title. In fact, no, there was EinhŠnder (one hand). But as 'Der Wille die Macht', Xenosaga's title, was created by Namco, it doesn't really count, does it?

Faizon

Googleshng:
Squaresoft? German? Wha? This is one of those times when someone sent in a really long letter and I read right over part of it isn't it. *Checks yesterday's column* Yup. OK.

Xenosaga is not being made by Squaresoft.

Xenosaga is not being made by Namco.

Xenosaga is being made by Monolithsoft. Monolithsoft is a group of people who at one point worked for Squaresoft, but left a few years ago to form their own company. They then started working on Xenosaga, and got Namco to publish it. They've never stuck German in the title of a game before, particularly since this is the first game they've made since officially becoming their own company.

 
Disc 2

Goog,

What was wrong with Xenogears' second disk? All it did was prevent you from spending another 60 hours in dungeons and cut straight to the real meat-and-potatoes, the story. A text-speed change option would be welcome, but there was otherwise nothing wrong with disk two of Xenogears.

-Traks

Googleshng:
I'm one of those few people who actually liked the second disc of Xenogears. Still, if you want me to sit through a remake, I want to have some new stuff, and there's plenty of neat stuff skipped over in there.

 
3 quick questions

'lo Google,

So this isn't really an RPG question, but you often know this kind of thing. What kind of series is Slayers? I'm looking for an anime series to watch and Slayers caught my eye. I liked Trigun and Irresponsible Captain Tylor, is Slayers anything like those?

Googleshng:
Slayers is a comedy series that can best be described as an animated version of what happens if you play a campaign of AD&D long enough for everyone to get really overpowered, and the GM starts getting silly. It's a bit sillier at times than Trigun is, but since you listed Tyler too, you'd probably like it unless you can't stand fantasy settings.

Also, Xenogears Perfect Works: Where can you find this? And is it available in English, because I don't speak Japanese. Wouldn't stop me from buying it, though...

Googleshng:
There is no english version no, which means you'd have to find it at an import store, on eBay, or just find someone who has it.

Lastly, you've mentioned in the past that Sega planned to make Skies of Arcadia 2. Is that still happening, or did that project die with the Dreamcast?

Thanks!

Googleshng:
A sequel to Skies of Arcadia is one of those things where I've seen mention of it in enough places to be reasonably sure it IS in development, but there's no official word on anything, and most likely won't for quite some time.



Quickies

Hey Googleshng,

Quick question, what exactly is a bishonen?

~Draconius

Bishonen: A Japanese word that refers to a girly-looking guy.

How exactly DO you get a job like yours then? =)

/ Neko

Well, one day I woke up, checked my mail, and saw a letter asking if I wanted to take over RPGamer's Q&A. So I replied "Sure!" That's how CC got it too. A better question to ask is why.

Hey there Googleshng,

I caught rumor that Dragon Force was going to be re - released but I can't get a STRAIGHT answer from Working Designs. You heard anything?

I've never heard anything like that, but that sort of call would have to come from the Japanese publisher, not Working Designs.

The Last Laugh:

Tada! Nice big column!

Tomorrow, Sephiruss will be here again, so if you have any questions on FF10, now's the time to ask.

Now off I go to dig through this mountain of free Saturn games to see how many don't suck!

Googleshng "Woo! Free garbage!" @rpgamer.com
Happy happy happy!

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