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5611  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Best RPGs based on story alone? on: April 18, 2007, 07:10:14 PM
I dunno.  A lot of 15-18 year olds who played FF8 loved it because they felt they could really identify with Squall.  On the other hand, a lot of people in their 20s and up who played FF8 didn't like it... because they could really identify with Squall.  Squall was the "emo kid" teenager that many of us older gamers were at 15-17 and many of us want to forget that aspect of ourselves.  

The stuff Squall said and many of his actions are typical of what went through my head when I was 16.  

But you know, even now... it's been about 10 years since FF7 came out and almost 10 years since FF8 came out and if we're debating the merits and demerits of those games' stories even now, they've apparently struck a chord with enough people that there has to something really good in them.
5612  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Recently Viewed Movies on: April 18, 2007, 10:38:30 AM
Hey Nuri, have you read the Bridge to Terabithia novel?  I read it when I was a kid and though I don't remember much about it, I do remember liking it.  It had a rather sweet ending too.
5613  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Best RPGs based on story alone? on: April 18, 2007, 10:35:33 AM
I can understand why Alisha decided not to include Phantasy Star 3 (the graphics were grainy, the music was grating, and the gameplay was slow and clunky), but I'm willing to argue that Phantasy Star 3's story was possibly the best in the series.  The branching storyline spanning 3 generations was deep.  And if you managed to trudge through all of them (Game Genie is a boon here) you got a lot of insight into the world and its people.  I liked how mysteries in the first generation would get resolved in the 3rd generation.  

However, I still stand by my opinion that for story alone, graphic adventures and visual novels often have more interesting stories than RPGs.
5614  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Can* English Voice Acting ruins Characters in RPGs? on: April 16, 2007, 07:52:48 PM

This one's priceless.
5615  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Can* English Voice Acting ruins Characters in RPGs? on: April 16, 2007, 07:43:35 PM
You want examples of bad English voice acting in video games?

I think anything on this site qualifies: http://www.audioatrocities.com/

"the barrier privates me from going there."
5616  The Rest / General Discussions / Sofa Company Ships Racist Couch on: April 16, 2007, 06:01:46 PM
Eh, it was just a quote that grabbed my attention when I first heard it.  I wasn't even thinking that deeply about it.  Maybe it caught my attention because it sounds like something my dad would say.  I'm not about to go Freudian on myself here.  Either way, that's the truth.  

But when it comes to my sigs, I change them all the freaking time.  Who knows?  I may get bored of this one later in the week and put something else in there.  

Admittedly, though, I *do* have issues with whiny and/or obnoxious overweight people who seem all too willing to pass the buck, blame something or someone else for their weight, and lack the personal accountability to gauge their diets and activities.  

I know full well how damaging food can be; eating disorders, food addictions, development of diabetes from overeating, over or undereating due to medical issues such as a thyroid condition... it's all circumstance and I will react and think differently on a case by case basis.  

But again, this is not a slight on this or any human condition.  It's more me just being frustrated at the people and institutions who refuse to hold themselves accountable for their own actions.  

Whatever, though.  I'm sure I have a LOT more prejudices that I'm either not willing to admit to or don't recognize as such, but I'm not about to laundry list them here.  I'm human.  We all humans have our prejudices.  Even the most brilliant therapists in the world have prejudices and the ethical therapist won't see certain types of clients because they recognize that the strength of their specific prejudices can/will jeopardize the well-being of that kind of client.

EDIT: For anyone curious about the ol' sig quote Prime refers to (because a more amusing shiny object captured my interest for a sig)... "If obesity is really a disease as everyone likes to say it is, then it'll be the only disease that can be solved by long walks and keeping your mouth shut."
     -Sen. John McCain
5617  The Rest / General Discussions / Sofa Company Ships Racist Couch on: April 16, 2007, 04:09:27 PM
Whoa.  I think I just had another "Color of Fear" moment.  This is tangential, but I think interesting for the discussion on racism/prejudice.  

In hindsight, how offensive is it when I and others use the term "white America"?  I'd say it's pretty bad.  Subversive prejudice perhaps.  I mean, when many of us say "white America" we really mean "corporate America."  The term somehow got twisted into "white America," likely because the heads of all the most powerful corporations in America (and possibly the world) are white.  Within the corporate infrastructure there is diversity, but speaking purely for myself, when I think "corporate" I immediately think "white."  

But not all white people are part of "corporate America."  Thus, "corporate America" isn't synonymous with "white America" even though many people, both within and outside America, believe its synonymity.  

That's something to ponder.
5618  The Rest / General Discussions / Sofa Company Ships Racist Couch on: April 16, 2007, 03:22:26 PM
Well, we all have our own prejudices and we all have different viewpoints on it.  I'm not going to soapbox and say that I don't.  I certainly do and yes, I DO think that not all prejudice is created equal.  It sucks, but it's just how it is in the world.  Prejudice in America is different from prejudice in other countries.  Prejudice regarding X ethnic group is different than prejudice regarding Y ethnic group simply due to cultural and geographical differences between places/groups.  

If a white person is called a honky in a country that's 85% black, it's different than if a white person's called a honky in a country that's 85% white.  Completely different experience even though the way the events play out is the same.  

It's all cheese.  Limburger is a different flavor of cheese than cheddar, but it all comes from cows.  And even then, a cow in California is different from a cow in upstate NY due to climate differences.  (ASIDE: I know someone's going to call me out on ignoring goat cheese.  d'oh! :P)

I think each and every human being in the world harbors some kind of racial prejudice.  It's in where/how it's manifested that's the difference.

Regarding the couch, I feel that, yes, the mother allowed the N-word to have meaning because, well, it does have a meaning and has had a meaning for a LONG time.  

Regardless, I think we can all agree that despite our own viewpoints on racism and prejudice, "ni**ger brown" is certainly not appropriate to have on a furniture label.  And the amount of blame-shifting, buck-passing, and lack of accountability within the company's infrastructure is frustrating and not cool.  

As silly as it sounds, corporations scares me more than racists.  It would not surprise me in the least if a healthy percentage of the prejudiced thoughts/actions/etc. in current day America that's absent in other developed nations was somehow the result of a corporation manipulating our minds.  I guess I'd concisely label it corporate social manipulation or corporate sociological manipulation.    

But the evils of corporations are a whole 'nother discussion entirely.
5619  The Rest / General Discussions / Sofa Company Ships Racist Couch on: April 16, 2007, 02:41:37 PM
Then fire up your wayback machine and change history.  Whitey made the N-word an insulting derogatory word.  It's like during the Vietnam war when the Vietnamese were referred to as "gooks."  By calling them gooks, it made them seen not human and less than human.  In much the same way, killing people is bad but killing ni**ers was fine since in white vernacular they were "un-human/ less than human."  

It's the same as people using words like fag, kike, dot-head, etc.  Get rid of those terms and people will just find new ways to degrade others to make themselves feel superior.  

No matter what, the word ni**er is offensive and derogatory and reeks of ignorance.  Not always racial malice, because like in "Color of Fear" there is that guy David who is racist but doesn't believe he is.  

Again, if you haven't seen "The Color of Fear" watch it, then maybe you'll have a better understanding of where people like Azrael and I are coming from.  Otherwise, I'm sorry to say but the "white privilege" that white folks take for granted clouds their world view.  I know that sounds harsh, but it's the truth.  White folks may not truly know/understand why something like this couch label is demeaning, offensive, and a step-backwards-in-human-equality for us non-whites.  

Sorry, but derogatory terms for white folks like honky or cracker just aren't on the same level as ni**ger since America is primarily a white country.  White majority.  Majorities get privilege.  Me calling a white guy a honky is throwing a pebble.  A whitey calling me a dot-head is throwing a heavy rock.  

"Ni**er Brown" on a couch label IS racist.  Not maliciously racist, but certainly subversive.  It's the subversive racists like David in "Color of Fear" who scare me more than open malicious racists like the Klan.

And in the case of the couch, I don't necessarily think anyone's out trying to change the world.  Just asking for some accountability from those responsible.  Is a little accountability too much to ask?

I don't think it's a case of oversensitivity to prejudice at all.  It's just a heightened awareness that wasn't there decades ago.  Things do seem to be "getting worse" but perhaps things need to get worse before they get better.
5620  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Best RPGs based on story alone? on: April 16, 2007, 08:24:31 AM
Regarding MegaTen, I'd go DDS over Nocturne.  While I loved the plotline of Nocturne ( http://www.rpgfan.com/reviews/smt-nocturne/index2.html ), it doesn't have the structured narrative that many JRPG fans go for; plus, Nocturne is less about the characters developing than it is about the world developing.  DDS, as well as the Persona games, have far more structured narratives and character development.  

If you can find the import cheap, Persona 2: Innocent Sin has one of the best RPG stories I've experienced.  Don't worry about knowing Japanese, the wonderful ladies at Oracle of Maiya did a full text translation of all the dialogue.  http://www.chthonian.net/persona/oracle/  Even if you decide not to play the game, read the dialogue anyway.  It's so good.  It makes many of the events in Persona 2: Eternal Punishment that much more meaningful.  I warn you, my Persona 2 reviews are LOOOOOOONG.

And if it's story alone you crave, then why not expand into the visual novel genre?  Some of the most compelling video game storylines I've experienced were in visual novels.  For example, Ever17's amazing character-driven story simply blew me away.  I adore that game.   http://www.rpgfan.com/reviews/ever17/index.html
Hourglass of Summer was amazing too.  Still my favorite love adventure http://www.rpgfan.com/reviews/hourglassofsummer/index.html

Another visual novel with a killer storyline that just went above and beyond for me is Phantom of Inferno http://www.rpgfan.com/reviews/phantomofinferno/index.html
The Exodus Guilty trilogy had almost zero gameplay, but the storyline presented was more epic than I could have ever imagined.  

Or maybe expand into the graphic adventure/point-and-click genre.  The Longest Journey, for example, has a damn good story.  Excellent dialogue, memorable characters, a good English dub [way back when, a Norwegian board member commented that he preferred April Ryan's English voice to her original Norwegian voice (FunCom is a Norwegian developer), despite the fact that a well-known Norwegian TV actress voiced April.]  It's sequel Dreamfall, while having some clunky gameplay mechanics, had a damn good story too.
5621  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Turn Based Battle System Idea on: April 15, 2007, 08:24:07 PM
Hmmm... Lunar DS did something similar with fighting in Virtue Mode vs. Combat mode and that turned out disastrous.  From Pat's review:

Before beginning a battle, the party can either be in "virtue" mode or "combat" mode. Virtue mode allows the enemies to be sacrificed to the Goddess Althena; the player is then awarded with Althena Conduct (a.k.a. experience points), and the characters' level may increase over time. Combat mode robs the characters of any experience points, and in return can receive one of three kinds of items: tools (healing items,) sundries (for Gad's Express,) and cards.

As long as the entire party still gets appropo experience and money but the other spoils differ per world, that's cool.  But I wouldn't want one world to earn me EXP and the other not to.
5622  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Turn Based Battle System Idea on: April 15, 2007, 05:11:32 PM
The whole one encounter consisting of a bunch of mini-battles sounds kinda like what Thousand Arms did, and boy was combat tedious and IMO awful in that game.
5623  Media / The Soundroom / Matt Barlow Returns To Metal on: April 15, 2007, 09:39:53 AM


if anyone's interested in hearing their stuff.
5624  The Rest / General Discussions / GaGaGame Journal #5 on: April 15, 2007, 12:39:39 AM
I'm playing through Memories Off: Complete for Dreamcast.  I'm on 10/8 right now.  Good game and a classic love adventure, but nowhere near as good as Natsuiro no Sunadokei (Hourglass of Summer) in my opinion.
5625  The Rest / General Discussions / YOU ARE DAMNED on: April 14, 2007, 07:24:57 PM
That was kinda fun.  My biggest pet peeve is easily backseat drivers, so I damned them for being assholes while I'm driving.  Worst is when

they try to "help" by navigating me when I'm parallel parking.  Shut the fuck up.  I'm a pretty capable parallel parker so I can do it better when you shut up and let me concentrate.
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