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Another day in the mine

 

In the N64

 

Zelda: OoT

 

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Alex Kimbel

   Hi there. Tis I, your substitue RPGuru, Alex Kimbel. Sorry I didn't update last night, I've been sick lately.

   Also, I appreciate all of you Pumpkins fans' sending me letters. They are a great band, I love 'em. On with the letters..


FFVI woes

Hey Alex, I need some advice, but first, I need to tell you one thing. I started playing rpg's with FF3(6), and I absolutely love the game. I've played it around 3 or 4 times straight through, and I'm know so much about the game it's scary. Now that it's being rereleased for PSX, I'm wondering about what I should do. I have two options: 1. get it now, and suffer through the Japanese. 2. Hope that it gets ported to the US (is the news that Square is porting ff4 and ff5 PSX rumors or are they based on fact) Now if the news is based on fact, do you think that they will port ff6 PSX in the near future? Should I wait and hope that ff6 gets ported? Or should I go ahead and buy the ff6 Japanese? Now, I haven't played any japanese games before, but Im so familiar with ff6, that I doubt the language will be a problem for the *plot.* But for things like weapons, items, relics, espers, spells, etc, I'm not so sure. So what is your advice? Do you think the Japanese will be too difficult? Should I hope and wait for a ff6 PSX US version?

--Thanks,
David Liu

Alex: Honestly, if I didn't know Japanese, I wouldn't buy a Japanese game. Sure, I can see why one would import for fighting games or games with little important text, but with a game such as FFVI, importing sounds like a bad idea. Like you said, there are a lot of items, relics, weapons, etc. that would be hard to figure out. You wouldn't want to try to cast Ultima and end up curing the enemies, would you? So, I'm going to have to say no, getting the Japanese version is a bad idea. We'll just have to wait and see if it gets brought over to the U.S.


Games these days..

Hey RPGuru!

Before I start this letter, I have to ask why the heck you like the Draw System? To me, it's one of those things where it adds more Challenge, but it's not a good thing, it's a FRUSTRATING thing. Example being you draw so many magic, then OOPS! You used it all on that mini boss, so your dead at the boss, and since you didn't save, you have to fight the mini boss again. But anyway, that's not my point.

1. What has happened to Square? This is a matter of opinion, but After games like FF7, they seem to want to keep on the mainstream of things. now I know I will get flamed to all eternity for this, but I did not like Final Fantasy 7. I hated the story, the gameplay, everything. Square is using the same technique they did for FF7 on FF8 by making it a graphics fest and I am pretty sure they will do it to FF9, so why has square taken a good series like FF and put it down with the band wagon of Graphics selling.

2. What do you think about recent rumors of Phantasy Star sequels for Dreamcast? We all want it for dreamcast, (As long as it does not stand in the way of another Lunar game... ;]) But we don't think we will get it...

~EBwiz

Alex: The draw system can be frustrating, if you don't plan, I guess. I'm assuming it's always good to have a large amount of spells stocked up, so when you get to that hard miniboss, you won't use them all.

1) Yes, it may have seemed like Square has changed since the days of FF3 and Chrono Trigger, but in my opinion, it's for the better. Sure, Final Fantasy 7 may not have been what FFIII was, but I liked the story, as mistranslated and confusing as it was. Plus, if Square hadn't "gone mainstream" we might not be seing such titles as Xenogears, for they wouldn't have enough money to create them. Remember, companies are there to make money. Whether it is making dishwash soap or games, they need to make money somehow.

2) I don't really believe they are true. Sure, it'd be great to see a PS title on Dreamcast, but it looks like we'll have to sit and wait until any official announcements.


They keep getting stronger

Yo, Jos...erm... Alex!

Y'know, I just noticed something in recent Square games. One character who isn't a secret one has to be a monopoly to the rest of the characters in the stats and abilities. Two recent games follow the trend -

Final Fantasy Tactics - T.G. Cid. Need I say more?

Xenogears - Citan. Once he had his katana, who could stop him?

So, I wonder if the obscenely-powerful-character-that-isn't-secret is a tradition in Japanese RPGs? If so, I will fear the day that a Square RPG places a godly powerful character based on Bob Livingston, an evil Republican.

~Matt

Alex: I've noticed that too, and it's making me mad. Sure, it may be easier to get by with these all-powerful characters, but it doesn't add a sense of balance strength-wise. Like, I knew it would be hard, if not impossible to get someone as strong as Citan in Xenogears. And I breezed through Tactics once I got Orlandu, the game seemed so easy. Maybe in future RPGs we will see this trend change, at least I hope so.


Time gates

Hey, man. I'd like to say that I think, informal or not, you are a very good RPGuru. I espcially like the "In the N64" bit I noticed today, with Zelda. Do you have a PSX? There's no Archives link I can see so I can't know....I don't have one: boo hoo hoo. (Hell, I don't like Playstation)

Anyway, the question. I recently got, like, quite a large bunch of my friends into playing Chrono Trigger again or for the first time (around 5 peoples), and we've run into a sort of deadlock as to where the Time Portals came from. I say they don't know and won't know, because it keeps the player thinking. Another guy says a sort of god must have made em. Yet another insists that they were made by Lavos because A) the scene where Lucia saves Lara mentions an "Entity" and B) in the battle with Lavos, they call him an "Entity." The fourth doesn't know (has no comment?) and the fifth was sick from school.

Think you could help, or give us your opinions? Cool.

- Mag

Alex: To my best knowledge, the time gates were created by Lavos as he ripped through time. I hope that ends the dispute between you and your friends.


Sephiroth's got nothing on Saddam

Well as I am sure everyone in North America is aware, Wednesday night we bombed Iraq's capital, Baghdad. Gee what a surprise, Saddam had it coming. Well I'm a socioeconomic freak and a RPG lover on the side, so I, in the odd hours of epiphany of the nights have deduced a way to settle this without bombs, troops, or annoying diplomats like Krushchev was in the GA back in 1960. Simple: Middle Eastern RPG's. Yes you can play as Bin Laden, Husine, Malosovich (I know he is Yugoslavic but still...), or other manglomanaic dictators of "republics" who anger the West. And it would be a great way for failing Asian economies like Japan to reestablish good negations with the Middle East. But the games could have multiple endings (like Chrono Trigger), or a path of destiny based upon how far/how many battles you fought during the game. Instead of democracy we would have Play Stations, and instead of war we would use Virtual Reality. Theocratic institutions would no longer be the "opiate" of the masses, but addictive game play would be; the world would be reduced to the level of mind blown 5th graders, who have no concept of the outside world. And peace on Earth would reign, Amen.

Alex: Heh, what a wonderful idea. Maybe after all of this crap going on is over, an RPG developer out there will pick this one up. ;)


I'm the desert fox

That line is from Porcelina of the Vast Oceans, which is a very cool song, BTW. I'm listening to it at the moment as well... By the way, are FF4, 5, and 6 really going to finally come to the US? By the way, what do you think of Desert Fox? On one hand, I'm glad that bastard Saddam's getting what he deserves. On the other hand, I don't know if it's a good idea, because I'm sure a lot of people are going to die...sad isn't it.

-Sir Serpent, Esquire

Alex: As far as I know, Final Fantasy IV and V coming to the U.S. are unconfirmed rumors. PSM reported in their latest issue that Square is working on them for a U.S. Playstation release, but Square has not confirmed this. Final Fantasy VI was just recently announced for a Playstation release in Japan. No word on a U.S. release has been said, though.

Bah, I think the whole thing is stupid. First of all, Saddam needs to get a grip and let the U.N. inspect his weapon stuff. And if bombing Iraq will make him do this, then I'm all for it, honestly. But, I worry about the innocent civilians that will be killed. I really do wish there was a better way to solve this, but apparently there isn't.


Well, that wraps up tonights column, lets hope I feel better tommorrow.

~ I've faced the fathoms in your deep / withstood the suitors quiet siege / pulled down the heavens just to please you, appease you / the window blows, and I know / I can't go on digging roses from your grave. ~

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