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6151  The Rest / General Discussions / Study: Men play casual games as much as women on: November 03, 2007, 06:44:20 PM
To me, a "casual" game is one my 60 year old aunt can easily pick up and play, play for a few minutes at a time, and be done with it.  Stuff like Windows Solitaire or Tetris.  

A casual game has a more universal quality than something like a Mario, Zelda, or FF.
6152  Media / Brush and Quill / Book Thread Continued on: November 02, 2007, 01:31:52 PM
It was language and content that got Catcher in the Rye banned from a lot of high schools.  I read it in high school and I liked it... probably because it was one of the only books I read in middle and high school that didn't completely suck.  The book was fairly easy to read and back in high school, I liked that I was reading a book about a disillusioned somewhat modern day character close to my age rather than some stodgy adult in the distant past.  It seemed every book I had to read in the middle and high school canon felt old and stodgy.  Catcher in the Rye didn't.  

You'd probably have a different view if you read the book at age 15 than now.  I was a sophomore in high school when I read it, so I was probably 15 or 16.  Remember, I was in high school from 1992- 1996, the grunge era, so Holden seemed to resonate more with us back then.  

Animal Farm was probably the best book I read for school, pre-college.
6153  The Rest / General Discussions / Game Journal #9999 on: November 01, 2007, 07:30:18 PM
Still in chapter 2 of FFX-2.  I tell you, if having Yuna pull a complete 180 and go from pious acolyte "nice" girl to naughty, booty-shorts wearing "bad" girl means I don't have to do those damn Cloister Trials, I say viva la booty shorts!  

I did not enjoy those Cloister Trials in FFX.  It's funny, there are a lot of things I did not like about FFX, yet I came away from the game with positive feelings/memories.
6154  Media / The Soundroom / Song of the Moment Part 7,894,673,589.3 on: November 01, 2007, 06:20:21 PM
Quote from: "Losfer"
Nile - Papyrus Containing The Spell To Preserve It's Posessessor From Attacks From He Who Is In The Water


Man, that's a Bal Sagoth-worthy mouthful song title.

EDIT:  I guess if we're going for mouthful song titles, I'll go with

If You're Looking for Sympathy, You can find it in a Dictionary Somewhere Between Shit and Syphilis by Jordan Bates (my friend's hardcore band.)
6155  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Something to consider(about Matsuno and the ogre battle saga on: November 01, 2007, 11:33:19 AM
Man, I've been hearing these same complaints from people since 1997.  It's getting old.  

I think S-E is doing what any smart business would.  Since FF7 back in 1997, they've been expanding and promoting RPGs to a gaming market that normally didn't play those kinds of games in the 80s and 90s.  Is that such a bad thing for a business to do?  Is it such a bad thing to want to introduce your product to as diverse and wide an audience as you possibly can?  What good is having a fantastic product if only 5 people use it?  Is it such a bad thing to want to recoup your development costs on a product and perhaps even pocket a little extra on it?  

The video game industry is a business and S-E is no exception.  Creative endeavors are hard to make money on since anyone who calls a painter or musician who tries to make a buck a capitalist sellout.  Hey, artists need to eat too.  And considering that video games have typically cost $50/game since the NES days and only now are starting to (fairly) raise the prices to $60 to cover more expensive development costs, that's some pretty low inflation.  

If you dislike what S-E is doing so much, whining on the internet won't do anything.  You need to speak through your wallets.  If you dislike what S-E is doing, don't buy their games.  If you love what another company is doing, buy their games.  For those who dislike the direction S-E is going with RPGs, there are plenty of other companies who have a product that can satisfy you.  

If you're going to go with the whole 2D rules 3D drools route, look at 2007.  2D RPG "old school" has enjoyed a mini-rennaissance.  Need I mention Odin Sphere, Grim Grimoire, Ar Tonelico, Atelier Iris 3, and Soul Nomad among others?  Yeah, who'd have thought that the most visually stunning RPG of 2007 was a 2D side scroller (Odin Sphere.)
6156  Media / Single-Player RPGs / S-E is the King of Games on: November 01, 2007, 11:04:40 AM
Quote from: "SonicDeathMonkey"
Square-Enix is like the Disney of videogames.


Is there a Kingdom Hearts joke in there somewhere?'

And, meh, do I need to give the lecture again about speaking through your wallet instead of an internet soapbox to make your dislike for a company's products meaningful?
6157  Site Related & More / RPGFan: Site / Holy Shit.....TEN YEARS!? on: November 01, 2007, 10:19:19 AM
All fond and not so fond memories aside, Dade mentioned that the original impetus for his post was the Roundtable discussion.  I'm sure everyone on the staff who participated in it (Pat, Mark, Eric, Damian) and did the editing on it (JP) appreciate that folks checked it out and enjoyed it.  

The Roundtable recently concluded with Sunday's update.  

So now I ask: are these kinds of roundtable features something you would like to see more of?  Why or why not?  We did it and posted it because we felt it brought up points about the state of RPGs that readers could relate to and have talked about frequently both on the forums and I'm sure in real life with gaming buddies.
6158  The Rest / General Discussions / Game Journal #9999 on: October 31, 2007, 06:56:40 PM
FFX-2.  Chapter 2.  Beclem's an asshole.  Gunner's Gauntlet's cheap.  I did manage to FINALLY after many tries score 519 with 45 seconds left on the clock.  I spammed the hell out of this blindspot.
6159  Media / Single-Player RPGs / A practice in objectivity on: October 31, 2007, 04:43:47 PM
I'll break the rules again, since I've not played enough of Vagrant Story to judge, but Eusis mentioned Persona 1 a while back and no one did it.  

+Darkly twisted storyline with multiple endings
+Excellent music
+First Megami Tensei game in the US

-Dungeons could be obnoxiously long (especially the one you have to do twice)
-Severe dearth of save points
-US localization blew chunks (no Snow Queen Quest, characters unable to decide if they're in Japan or America, etc.)  

So next would be Vagrant Story since that came before me.
6160  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Persona 3 on: October 31, 2007, 11:40:19 AM
Re: some concerns.  I would assume your save file from regular Persona 3 can carry over to FES so you don't have to "start over" so to speak.  

Yay?  Nay?
6161  The Rest / General Discussions / Re: Healthy Food Choices on: October 31, 2007, 07:48:57 AM
Quote from: "Leyviur"


Anyway, the problem is that most people have a common conception that fat = unhealthy. This is not always true.


+1.  Your brain needs certain lipids (fats) in order to function properly, if I'm not mistaken.

And regarding pasta, whole wheat pasta is quite readily available these days, and though it takes longer to cook and as more finicky about getting al dente, that's something to consider in lieu of white pasta.  

As for spicy food and digestion, I believe it's the capsacin in chili peppers that does that (hard to believe, no?)  A cool macaroni dish is macaroni, tomato sauce, some cheddar cheese, and a chopped up chili pepper.  Simple yet awesome.

But, really, fresh ingredients and everything in moderation.  The second you get off the processed food, your body can tell the difference.  Mine certainly does and it rebels whenever I eat processed or fast food (which after watching Super Size Me, I'll never eat again.)
6162  The Rest / General Discussions / Game Journal #9999 on: October 30, 2007, 10:35:48 PM
FFX-2 is cheeseball as all get out.  But that's what makes it fun.  I mean, I would be goofing around and having fun if I didn't have to put a gun to my head to save the world or see legions of people dying in front of me on a daily basis.  

But, man, the mission based gameplay, branching pathway storylines, multiple endings- this is something I wished FF8 would have done.  Should've pursued the whole mercenary missions and political storylines instead of that lame-o witch hunt.  

Plus, how could I not enjoy playing dress up with Rikku?  Rikku was my favorite in FFX, and she's still good ol' Rikku in X-2, just without tension.  The whole interface with the dress spheres and "job" system was so much more streamlined and intuitive than the sphere grid.  I hated the sphere grid and FF12's license board.    

And as I said in the overrated/underrated thread in Console, I think the soundtrack is quite underrated.  I really like the music.
6163  The Rest / General Discussions / Healthy Food Choices on: October 30, 2007, 10:05:40 PM
I'd be careful with some sports drinks.  Some of them, like Gatorade, are REALLY high in sodium (to make you keep drinking.)  If you need a drink with a kick like a sports drink but no (or minimal) sodium, I like VitaminWater.  And even stuff for babies like PediaLyte is great for adults.  Lots of electrolytes.  Great for keeping an adult hydrated and enervated during a bad bout of Montezuma's Revenge.  

Oh, and another thing to watch out for with healthy eating.  If you go from a crap diet to a healthy diet, you WILL get sick.  Why?  Because now that your body has had a taste of healthy stuff, it goes into detox mode to rid itself of bad stuff.  I remember when I got myself into healthier eating habits, eating more vegetables and fresh foods, my body went into major detox mode and I felt like I had the worst flu for a couple of days.  (I used to eat a really bad diet.)  

And anyone who's known me for a while knows I'm really into my Juiceman Juicer.  That's one appliance I use all the time.  Forces me to buy a ton more produce (some for eating, a lot for juicing.)  

Since others have mentioned... I used to weigh 220 in 2004.  I'm around 185 now.  My "fighting" weight is 165.

EDIT:  I don't believe in denying yourself food.  Psychological health is health too.  If you eat all healthy meals during the week, you need to allow yourself one or two 'cheat' meals a week.  If you love chocolate cake and cut it out of your diet completely, you will get irritable because you crave chocolate cake but you can't have it.   Just be sure to make your serving of chocolate cake about 1/4 the size they'd serve you in a diner.  And eat it slowly.  Savor your cheat meal.  

I'm a believer in portion control.  Whenever I eat out, I skip appetizers and only eat about half my entree; I take the rest home.  After all, American restaurants give you ginormous portions.

And a good habit to get into is to take a walk around the block a little after dinner.  This way, you work off some of your dinner and it's not sitting in your gut like a rock as you sleep.
6164  The Rest / General Discussions / Healthy Food Choices on: October 30, 2007, 09:53:43 PM
If you're going to do pizza, do it healthy.  

Buy whole wheat pizza dough if you can.  Use a good quality sauce.  In terms of cheese, use less of it or try other kinds that don't get as oily when melted.  Maybe even cut out the cheese entirely (one slice of pizza from your local pizzeria probably has more cheese than should be in a proper daily serving.)  Fresh veggies for toppings and if you decide to use ham or something, thin slices of really lean ham.  You need your protein too.  

I make a pizza with fresh dough and fresh ingredients once a weekend and it lasts me for four dinners.  Portion control, baby.  Prep time and cooking time aren't much.  

One pizza idea that tastes good and won't weigh you down like an anchor is one with buffalo sauce, grilled chicken pieces, and crumbled bleu cheese (don't cover the entire thing in bleu cheese; use judiciously to complement everything else.)  Try that with some celery sticks on the side and some soy milk.  The bread in the crust should help counteract the heat.  The one thing in pizza that weighs you down is the oily/greasy of melted mozzarella.  

In terms of portion controlling, realize that one serving of meat is about the size of a deck of cards.  Eating smaller portions of meat and larger portions of veggies are the way to go.  I tend to like spring mix because the mix of spinach, kale, chard, mustard greens, arugula, and others offers more dynamic flavors than just lettuce or spinach alone.  In terms of dressing, balsamic vinagrette is a healthy way to go.  Don't douse your salad.  A capful should be enough to given an even coat of flavor when you toss.  

Another idea: If you buy a box of ready made chicken tenders, take a small to medium size tortilla, slice up a single chicken tender on it, pile on some spinach and tomatoes, a long thin slice of cheddar, oven for 8-10 minutes, roll, and enjoy.  This actually makes me feel as full as if I were to eat a plate of chicken tenders alone.  

Another thing to do is to eat slowly.  It takes 15 minutes after you eat for your body to feel full.  So if you eat slowly and don't scarf down mass quantities as quickly as possible, your body can digest more effectively and allow you to feel fuller on less food.  

Drinking lots of water is great too.  I'd say a couple of pints a day should be good; stagger it throughout the day, though.  Cleans out your body from the inside and helps keep your skin hydrated too.  Don't overdo the water, though, or you'll fuck up your kidneys.

If you tend to consume a lot of meat and dairy, a good fruit to have on hand is pineapple.  It has bromelain that helps your body more easily break down animal proteins.
6165  The Rest / General Discussions / Game Journal #9999 on: October 30, 2007, 06:35:34 PM
The Sacred Rings is the worst video game I've played this year.  This wins my "Crap of the Year" for 2007 award.  

I'm playing another crappy graphic adventure to review for the site.  

To maintain my sanity, I'm playing me some FFX-2 every now and then.  Man, that game's awesome.  It is so much fun to play and the music is sweet.  (I'm not being facetious here.  I honestly love the game.)

My PS2 backlog (besides FFX-2): Digital Devil Saga I and II, Okage: Shadow King.  Evil King Stan's pretty badass, but Gig has more pungent dialogue.  I do envision Stan with Gig's voice, though.
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