Ask Google
and Silkenray
Googleshng - February 3 '99- 1:30 Eastern Standard Time

These folks have LONG intros, so I'll give them room.

Silkenray: Hiyas, Heylas, Hullo-Hullo, Greetings, Good Eve, etcetera ad nauseum to you, good readers. First, a little bit about myself. My name is Susan, alias Silkenray, alias Celes-Dawn. I am a 16 year old freshman in college, double-majoring in Theater and Psychology. As the people from a *cough* channel who's name I shall not mention under penalty of death from the regulars there know, I draw, act, sing, compose music, and play one or two songs on the harp when I feel like it ;) Unlike the rest of the guest-hosts, I am here because I did something only tangentially connected with RPG's. As most or all of you knew, I drew "Google-babe's" sig pic. What this means is that, while I have the charisma that a Q&A host needs, I may not necessarily have the knowledge. Hence, I bring with me my brother. "What's his name?" you ask... My answer: Does it matter? Thus, he will be known from this point forward as "Susan's Brother."

"Susan's Brother": Thanks, kiddo. For those wondering who I am, I have agreed that my identity will remain a mystery. I've done this because I was quite naturally insanely jealous when I heard that my sister was chosen as Google's guest host just pecause she drew a picture! And to think, I introduced her to the site! Oh yeah, and there's the fact that I don't want slime face here hitting on my sister... But I digress. I'm an 18 year old RPGamer who has been playing and enjoying the little bundles of joy since the original Final Fantasy was released in the US. I've been frequenting the site for quite a while (Since Josh Reid was the Q&A host... now there was real host. Kids these days... Never appreciate the classics...). I'm a senior in high school, and I hope to be valedictorian of my class this spring. But all of this is probably irrelevant, as I don't even have a name you know.

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I just got home, OK?
Heya Googleshng!!! I got a quick question about Grandia. I hear that I'm supposed to learn the awesome Dragon Cut when reaching level 16 sword, level 7 earth, and level 6 fire. However, I am currently at level 17 sword, level 10 earth, and level 11 fire, and I haven't learned it!!!! What the *@#^%##*& gives here!?!?! Is this an attack you don't learn until a certain point in the game, or what??? Any help would be GREATLY appreciated.

"Hey, what's this? It's kinda warm and soft and furry..."

Hey! No greeting for me? *pouts*. Oh well... To answer your question, usually (though I am not positive in this particular case) when you are at a high enough level, with all the proper stats etcetera to learn a skill, and you don't, it usually means that either you haven't reached a point in the game where you can learn it, or that you don't have an item necessary to do so. My advice: Keep on playing. Don't neglect corners of dungeons or such where items might be hidden. Eventually, you will get that skill, so just be patient. Hope that helps. ;) Oh, and that furry thing...? What's short and cute and looks like a combination of a rabbit and a cat?

Well, Kev... I've played Grandia, but I was too interested in the storyline to spend a lot of time leveling and gaining magic skills. Plus I never tought Justin Earth magic. But, here's something that might help you out. Check the list where it shows what skill levels you have to reach to gain new skills. If it doesn't appear there, then chances are you can't learn it. I'm not positive about this, but... Let me just say that even though I never learned the Dragon Cut, I'm pretty sure Justin used it in a ceartain story scene I saw. As for the furry thing... Why don't chu guess?

Neither of you knew this? There's a point in the plot where the ??s in Justin's move list turn into real numbers, then another for Feena's. Keep playing.

Simple Math
Standard FF8 Spoiler

Hi, Silken and Googleshng,

I was wondering, when the WonderSwan was going to be released in the US? And with Laguna being Squall's father...I think that's quite impossible, since on the back of the action figures package it lists Laguna's age as 27, and Squall's as the simple math, Laguna would've been 10 when Squall was born, a little too early for Laguna to be a father.


P.S., to 'Nikolai', I called Ramus Ramsus for the first few hours of the game, too

Huzzah! A greeting this time, all of my own! :) Oh, and Hiya, Zook. Hey, people, meet one of my loving stalkers/friends/cult members! ;) About the first, I know no more than you. As for the second, I'm assuming that the age listed is the age Laguna was during the initial "flashbacks". Elsewise, chalk it up to Temporal Paradox.... Temporal Paradox is fun... but be careful with those alternate timelines. They can get rather bothersome ;) Oh, and I called Ramus Ramsus too, before I went insane after hearing "La la la la LAAAAA" ninety billion times. I'll have to play that game through with the sound off. :)

I haven't the foggiest about the release date of the WonderSwan... And is it just me, or is that the dumbest name imanigable for a game system? But I'm moving off on a tangent once more. As for your FF8 question, you do have a point there. But I'm inclined to agree with my sister, here. Laguna ceartainly wasn't 10 in the flashbacks, so obviously the age they mentioned for him would appear to be in reference to him there. On the other hand, it would technically be possible for a 10 year old to have a kid... But I don't think Sqare advocates that kind of stuff... (Yuck...).

Yeah, that's the age of Laguna when first seen. Now here's a real math problem for you. Look at the ages involved in FF7. Vincent must time travel...

Cid Los Angeles
Hi Google! How're you doing after your flight? Jet lag? Anyhow, living in California, I noticed a little detail that might seem interesting to a few people on this sight. I didn't think much when Square had two people in FF8, Irvine and Laguna, which almost everyone knows are two cities in California. But when I went off on an Etiwanda competition (I'm in marching band, or was last semester), I saw a building and I am NOT lying, called Hawwa Miang Inc. Miang Hawwa from Xenogears, anyone?

Well, I just thought that was a little bit interesting. A Square conspiracy, hmmm? Newsflash: Square is trying to take over the world by claiming authority and ownership over major cities and corporations!


Once again, no greeting for me... *sniff, sniff*. Hello, Xenochick! Um... that's quite a... *wink, wink* coincidence there, isn't it? *draws out a pocket watch, swinging it back and forth, baaaaack and foooorth* There is no Square-California conspiracy... There is no Square-California conspiracy....

Hi there! I'm single young man looking for companionship. I enjoy long walks on the beach and... *Insert slap from Silkenray here* Ow! Sorry! Anyway, Square's chances of taking over the world are pretty slim, especially with my Trance Silksteel Garrisons guarding the coast. (A proper nod to all the Sidgamers out there, who understand the reference.) Ok, but seriously... It MAY be true that Square gets the names of its characters from cities and corporations in California, but I wouldn't worry. How can a company with cool characters like "Sacremento" and "San Diego" be evil? Square is obviously trying to save us from ourselves.

My cousin once found an oily metal plaque on the sidewalk that said "DO NOT OIL MECH" on it. Think about THAT.

This question is for Google but if Silkenray knows anything about Escaflowne go ahead and answer.
Doesn't it just seem like alot of Escaflowne is from FF6 I mean you've got your girl with a mysterious pendant, a dashing hero who thinks all women love him, a hero with a brother on the other side, a rich guy travelling in an airship, big robot knights, and most of all an Empire with a capitol that looks exactly like Vector.
From Levi the Great AKA the Ryoga Hibiki of Cherokee

First... Ryoga Hibiki. Hmmm... wonder where I heard that name last? ;) Second, all of these are common themes in Fantasy style games/movies/anime/manga. Though it's fun to imagine connections, the ones you see here were probably entirely unintentional. If not... then... *takes out pocket watch just in case*

I must admit that I've never seen the series in question, but come on! How can you resist rich people in airships and giant robot knights? These cliches exist for a reason. THEY'RE COOL! So there. I had a good feeling!

Actually, I noticed the Square-esque look to Escaflowne also. It just so happens that Escaflowne's character designer (Nobuteru Yuuki) has worked for Squaresoft for many years. He wasn't on the FF team ever to my knowledge, but he'd still have been hanging out in the art department. Oh, and then Xenogears has character design that's AWFUL similar to Escaflowne in return, so it's a full circle kinda thing. 8)

Hey Google, Brad, Paws, minna-san!
I sent you this link before, but my letter was so yuckily long I don't blame you if your eyes just kind of glazed over as you read it... so here's some links to some FFVIII RPGirl fanatic pictures, without the overhead. In short, I wanted an idea for a crazy Halloween costume to wear to school this year, as it would be... *sob*... my last Halloween ever, probably! A friend of mine suggested (I don't think he knew how serious I was) that I dress as Shiva from FFVIII... So here's a still pic of me as Shiva, and here's an animated GIF of me being summoned. Oh, and here's that same friend, Evan, as Tonberry King: still picture and animated GIF. And I actually took the time to edit those images myself... Whew! So don't ever doubt the existance of RPG girl fanatic[s]. Oh yeah... and I'm sick of FFVII-bashing--I thought that it was the best game I've ever played, and yes, I have been playing since the days of the original FF1, and yes, I do love the classics(Crystalis, Secret of Mana, and Chrono Trigger are my other all-time faves). Didn't much care for FFVIII (although you can see I got a Halloween costume out of it ^_^), but it seems like everyone either hates FFVII because it actually has a complex, rich, well-realized plot and distinctive, deep characters, or thought it was the bee's knees only because it represented a great technical leap for RPG's or something... and then went on to "love" FFVIII in the same, entirely non-personal way. FFVII just struck a chord for me... I love it for itself, and not the "progress" or whatnot it represents. Not all people who love dark atmospheres and identity-crisis stories (...and Cloud) are bandwagon-jumpers! So it really doesn't matter--as far as I'm concerned, it might as well have been made just for me, you know? So there!

Jaa, genki de ne!
--Claire ^_^

I've given up on people greeting me by name... er... um... alias. So...Two words... Great costumes! Oh, and I agree with you. FFVII was bashed far too much, in my opinion. It had it's flaws, but it was fun, with an interesting plot, and great music. It seemed to me that most of the FF bashers heard one of their friends bash it, and decided to hate it then and there.... Ah well. No hypnotism for you! Next time, propose a conspiracy theory, okay?

Where was I... Oh yeah... I like long walks on the beach, intelligent conversations, and... *Insert yet another Silkenray slap* OW! Sorry! God... Anyway, I enjoyed Final Fantasy VII, though VI was my all time favorite. I think the main flaw with VII (in my opinion) was the depth given to some of the characters, and the complete lack thereof of the rest. For example, Cloud and Aeris were characterized throughout the entire game, but Barret was basically done after Gold Saucer.

Well, FF7 has it's highs and lows. I personally have some complaints with the music, especially during the ending. I mean the actual ending, not One Winged Angel (although that does rip off O Fortuna, one of my favorite songs). Still, I like the materia system.

FF11... creepy.
Dearest Google and Silkenray, partners in crime,

I know I'm not the only one, but I'm pretty much getting pleasure spasms just thinking about how cool Final Fantasy 9 is going to be. If nothing else, its existance should put to rest all the complaints going around that "Square doesn't listen to its fans". I can't wait to start kickin' it oldschool again with black mages, MP and airships. As for Final Fantasy 11....
If they are going to have an online only rpg of final fantasy why do they have to have it be part of the actual "ascending numerical order"? There have been plenty of Final Fantasy type games that "borrowed" the ff name and not much else.. Final Fantasy Tactics, Final Fantasy Mystic Quest, Final Fantasy Legend, Final Fantasy Adventure.. Why cant they just have a Final Fantasy Online? Or something to that effect. Having such a drastically different kind of game be part of the 1 - 10 that came before it makes me feel kind of... dirty. And to clarify, thats dirty in a bad way.
Thanks for your input,
Esper Knight

I...I was greeted by name! *swoon* Seriously, now, I am looking forward to FFIX, and not just because of it's more "old school" feel. In my humble opinion, Square almost always produces games of extremely high caliber, and so another one (and so major a project!) is definately worth looking forward to. Oh, and I agree with your statement that FFXI should not be in the numerical order if it is going to be so drastically different from the other series. However, we don't have much say in what it will be called. "Big Brother", "The Man", and all that jazz. ;) Oh, wait! I just proposed a conspiracy theory... *hands her brother the pocket watch, frowning guiltily*

*Does the pocketwatch thing* Big brother is your friend. All hail the computer! When I clap my hands three times in a row, you will cluck like a chicken... There we go... All fixed up. As for looking to Final Fantasy IX... well, duh! God, if it's anything like FFIV, I'm going to be paralyzed by happy nostalgia... Now, I'm not too sure exactly how Final Fantasy XI is going to be done, so I can't immediately say that it will be a bad thing. It will ceartainly be unworthy of the Final Fantasy title if it's just another Everquest or Ultima Online. However, done properly, it could be a great deal of fun, and worthy of inclusion in the numbered series. It's just a bit too early to tell.

*Finishes clucking like a chicken, and snatches her pocket watch back*

I agree with everyone here, although I seem to recall hearing from someone that it might actually be a console style RPG with multiplayer online support like PSO, but then I seem to recall our news story says that's how FF10 works and that FF11 is just an icky ol'Online RPG. So, phooie.

Poll Problem
How is it possible to ask "Which Final Fantasy are you looking forward to?" when we know next-to-nothing about ANY of them, including individual mechanics and storyline information? All that we know is that IX will be PSX based, X will be PS2 based with some online capability, and XI will be PS2 total online RPG. Other than that... I think it's unfair to ask such a question at such an early stage.

Good point, that. I reply by saying "all of them". Frankly, Square almost always produces excellent games, and I have no doubt the tradition will continue, despite changes in system and online capability.

Good point. I have a few reasons to look foreward to FFIX more than the others, though. First of all, it will be released sooner. There's no point in pining away after something you won't see for ages. Next, IX has a traditional fantasy setting, which should bring back memories of the "good old days" for many of the people here. Finally IX will be for the PSX, which means that I won't have to shell out another $250 for a new system (don't let Susan fool you into thinking that SHE pays for these things!) just to play it. These are all pretty signifigant factors in IX's favor even before you consider mechanics, plot, and characters.

It is a bit odd to have that poll. It does tell you some things about the tastes of the readers as is though. It seems a return to fantasy is prefered to an online RPG.


I Don't care what is is. If it's lunch, I'll eat it.

Silk: Um... yeah. Watch out for that tree!!

Bro: Well I can have your lunch and eat it too. So there... (wipes his mouth)

You're prudish? Then you MUST be a girl. I don't know a single guy who isn't all too eager to talk about his masturbatory habits.
-Makkuro "Sumisu! SUMISUU!"

Silk: I know a guy who doesn't talk about whacking his willy. His name is Bjart. He is cool. He likes to press wild flowers? Oh, sorry! If you're reading this, Bjarticus... I didn't mean that!
Bro: I'm not even going to dignify this Quicky by saying I wouldn't touch it with a 10 foot pole.
Google: Me either. X(

Hey Google and evil Guest Host,
Who would win in a fight, a genderless q and a being or a ray?
Can we get some ziggy socky? The Fox

Silk: Um... Bad is good, good is bad, heh heh! *looks at the ceiling crosseyed* Oh, I wish I was an Oscar Meyer Weiner...

Bro: A Ray. I'm pretty sure my dad could take Google. No offense intended... As for Ziggy Socky... NO! I'm 18. Ask again in 3 years and I'll probably still say no. Oh, and I've kidnapped the Juggies. Watch the X Show instead of the man show or I'll never release them! BWAHAHAHAHA!

Google: I've met some BIG Rays in my day, like that ex-pro football player. So, I'll also go with Ray.

Well, this is it. Uh, it's pretty darned amazing.

Silk: FAScinating, really, dahling! *airkisses*. Hold on. I have something for you! *pulls out a ten gallon jug of Tang* Here!

Bro: Hey, Pablo! He broke the President!

Googleshng: Huh?

I like Cheese, Monkeys, and Haikus. That is all.
You asked for this is #RPGamer so this is what you get.

Silk: Hey, MistaCool! ;) Oh, and the last batch of Quickies arrived after my brother left to allow my Daddy to pay bills or something... so it's just you and me, kiddies!

Google: Ahem, me too.

Are you made out of peanut butter?
Thank you for your time.

Tithor Feranus

Silk: No, but I am made of sugar and spice and everything nice. ;)

Google: I'm not made of peanut butter, nor am I made of "liquid metal".

i've bought suikoden (the first one), and so far, i absolutely love it. does that mean i'm abnormal?

- hall of fame announcer, harry carey.

Silk: No, but you're job is hardly the national norm ;)

Google: It was too short for me.

The Last Laugh:

Silk: In closing, what have we learned today? Well, we've learned that crime doesn't pay. Evil is good, but only with honey barbecue sauce. The world is full of "not-stalkers". Hypnotism is a good thing, if you don't let it go to your head. Lexy may be my staffer, but Krius is my fuzzy wuzzy Kilt-Boy of Love! Cliches are fun, but so are non-cliches. Chu-chu is evil. And I'm tired, so.... Bro?

Bro: I co-guest hosted an RPGamer Q&A column. This job required a lot of intelligence. I tried my best, and as a result, I was able to answer the questions! I opened the last e-mail with faith... there were huge piles of Quickies inside! So I guess this job was a success!

Anyway, I'd like to thank Google for giving me the oppurtunity to help out with this column. Now, as I promised, I'll burn those pictures which would have revealed the awful truth about his/her gender once and for all. Finally, as my last act, I'd like to give out this link to another of my favorite pages. You might call it the RPGamer of Strategy Games... Here it is... Check it out if you're interested.

Google: FFT humor, I love it. To clear up any confusion, yes that's a Cheshire Catalyst pic. Anyway, this column was very... crowded, but pretty fun. Anyway, enjoy Paws while I go watch Weird Al live! Woohoo! Oh, and I'm putting a rant up tonight. Enjoy it.

One more quick note, anyone who wants to put an RPG together, check out my latest work of public service.

Googleshng "Yoda live!"
Weird Al is great, isn't he?

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