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Congratulations to Andrew Barker! RPGfan Editor of the Year and now Chief News Editor!
341240 Posts in 13945 Topics by 2222 Members
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6151  Media / The Soundroom / Song of the Moment on: August 30, 2006, 09:29:41 PM
Well, I've officially left my band Sullen Door (due both to school and having a personality conflict with the lead guitarist.  The singer and drummer are awesome classy guys who I love to death.)  

Hence, my song of the moment is a Sullen Door song called "Old Friends."  Subsequently, it's the only song on the band's myspace profile right now that has me playing on it.  

The song is kinda appropo too.  It's basically about how you forge friendships over a long span of time (like say during high school or college) and then the time comes when you and your group of friends have to part ways.  It's a bittersweet moment when you don't know what to say but you really don't need to say anything.  Just a hug from a good friend during this moment says a lot.  

Take me
And throw me in your arms and hold me
'Cuz we're not the same without each other
And I know that soon you will be
Leaving me

You know I don't know how to say I'm gonna miss you
And all the times we had in this life

So hold me in your arms
Tell me that you want
Us to be together
Yeah hold me in your arms
Tell me that you want
Us to be together

Save me
Pretty darling won't you save me
From all this sadness and confusion
You know this lonely will be
Losing you

You know I don't know how to say I'm gonna miss you
And all the times we had in this life

So hold me in your arms
Tell me that you want
Us to be together
Yeah hold me in your arms
Tell me that you want
Us to be together
6152  Media / Single-Player RPGs / Things you canít bear in RPGs on: August 30, 2006, 10:14:36 AM
In most any genre, romance is really tough to write and direct well.  Even in the love adventure genre, you have games like Hourglass of Summer and Never 7 that do romance extremely well and you also have games like Ai Yori Aoshi that are godawful.  

Even in movies, the romantic scenes in Star Wars Ep. 2: Clones could, and should, have been the strongest scenes in the movie but they were horrid due to the cracker-thin dialogue and the fact that George Lucas' directorial skills are horribly lacking.  

And even among romance novels, I'm sure there are those that are written well and others that are cheesier than a stinky brie.

EDIT: And Spoony Mage- that's one reason I liked Veola so much.  Whenever Lita had one of her annoying episodes, Veola's dry wit always put Lita in her place.

And +1 for those who mentioned that Tales of Symphonia's female characters are mostly melee characters.  Genis and Raine are the only mages, but that's due to their species rather than gender.  Sheena, Colette, and Presea are all melee characters.
6153  The Rest / General Discussions / Rockstar Games - Gluttons for punishment on: August 30, 2006, 09:58:43 AM
I think the Fear Effect games more exemplify the positive spin Hidoshi puts on it.  The creators of Fear Effect didn't want to compromise their vision and accepted the M rating that Fear Effect 2 received even though they knew it would mean less sales than if they had watered it down to a T rating.  

But for what its worth, Rockstar is positioning themselves as the birdie-flipping, rebel, bad boy game developer, people like that, and the publicity always translates into sales.
6154  The Rest / General Discussions / Paramount ends contract with Tom Cruise. on: August 29, 2006, 11:41:48 PM
Nah.  Tom's career isn't over.  Doesn't Tom have his own production company and stuff?  He's still a fairly bankable actor so even without Paramount, he'll make money.  Either another studio will court him because Tom= publicity, or he'll just do things via his own production company.

I think he's batshit insane and I think Scientology is absolute horseshit, but the news is no big deal and Tom won't be shedding any tears.
6155  Media / The Soundroom / Dreamfall Soundtrack! on: August 29, 2006, 09:42:31 AM
Parn is right.  The guy did send me a rather inflammatory e-mail because of my review and threatened legal action against the site for the samples.  I replied "thank you for voicing your concern.  I will bring this up with the rest of the staff so we can resolve it."  

So the samples go down and Pat/Ramza sends a very well thought-out reply and sets the guy straight.

But in the meantime, the guy sends me back another inflammatory e-mail, which I ignored because I don't have the time nor patience for an e-flamewar with some composer who's pissed off because I don't like his music.  

I'm used to hate mail.  I get it quite often.  I actually enjoy hate mail, because it tells me "wow!  Somebody out there actually gives a damn about little old me.  And for my words to fill a person with such raw emotions of disgust and loathing is testament to the power of my words."  In other words, hate mail only serves to stroke my ego.  I mean, heck, if someone were to say that my band sounds like cow diarrhea, I'd be flattered that our music caused such strong emotions in someone.  Power, baby!  

But this guy definitely crossed the line when he threatened legal action against the site.  He likely made that threat out of anger and I don't know whether or not he'd have actually gone through with it, but that was really not cool.  

Either way, thanks to this little incident, Leon Willett is getting some free publicity out of this.  http://www.leonwillett.com
6156  Media / The Soundroom / Dreamfall Soundtrack! on: August 28, 2006, 08:27:50 PM
If you want any details regarding this little slice of RPGfan soap opera drama, then PM me.  Still, Parn hit the nail on the head.

EDIT: And, yes, the Jay Sherman (The Critic) avatar and title are in honor of my snippet of RPGfan drama.
6157  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / Recently Viewed Movies on: August 26, 2006, 11:47:00 PM
Shooichi- you should definitely try to see Blade Runner Director's Cut.  The director's cut omits the annoying narration and the ending is completely different.  I found the ending in "regular" Blade Runner a tad hokey while the Director's Cut ending was a sucker punch.  

Director's Cut= the better Blade Runner.
6158  Media / The Soundroom / Song of the Moment on: August 26, 2006, 11:34:57 PM
My song of the moment is a shitty song by a shitty band and is song of the moment for a shitty superficial reason...

The chick in the video is really fucking hot.  

(If anyone cares it's "Tears Don't Fall" by Bullet for My Valentine.)
6159  The Rest / General Discussions / Penn and Teller: Bullshit! on Abstinence on: August 25, 2006, 06:53:21 PM
...either way, whether it's X saying one thing, Y saying something else, and everyone being up in arms about this, that, and which, the common ground here is that sex education in American schools is flawed and has been flawed for years.  Surely we can all agree on that, right?  Granted, even the best classroom education in ANY subject can only give you a fraction of the story.  I mean, a lot of what I learned about relationships and intimacy came from being in relationships and not on textbooks about relationships, even though there are tons of those materials out there with a lot to say.  

Some people honestly do think that abstinence-only IS a way to improve the flawed sex education.  To myself and others, this only makes it worse because it withholds information and takes a "do it because I said so" attitude, and "because I said so" is never a good reason to do anything for someone else.  I've always been a "why?" kid and "because I said so" is never a satisfactory reason.  

Did the video slant things a certain way?  Sure, but what media doesn't?  The point to me is that there is a valid message in there, and the debates we're having here are just testament that there *is* a flaw in the system regarding sex education in schools.  In looking at the big picture, we are all on the same page here and agree that there is a grievous flaw in the system regarding sex education.  And I feel like we're mostly picking nits without seeing the big picture.  

The Bush administration attempts to address the flaws in sex ed one way with their emphasis on abstinence-only sex education.  Other proponents address the flaws by doing more to educate people on best practices.  If a school in X district is strictly "abstinence-only" in its sex education policy then I would certainly hope that there is a resource somewhere in the community that will allow the families who favor a more comprehensive sex education curricula to get adequate information/resources.  Even if it's just a once weekly class at a community center or even someone's basement or something.  Panel discussions for parents on how to give "the talk."  Panel discussions for filling in the gaps that a school's sex ed program may leave out.  

Whether or not you like or dislike the way Penn and Teller address the issue is moot.  The bottom line is that it brings up an important issue and points out that the "how" of sex education is important.
6160  Media / Anime, TV, and Movies / "Moe" Maid News in Japan on: August 24, 2006, 02:34:46 PM
Is this for real?  I could only watch 2 minutes of that stuff.  I agree with Dice in that it's really bizarre how cartoony the news maid acts; like a human anime character.  She even talks like an anime character.  

You know, I used to think oddball Japanese stuff like this was cute and quirky in a good way and had that "Waaaai!" factor... nowadays, I just think it's fucking weird.  

How popular is stuff like this and those laughable exercise videos (where they try to teach English) in Japan?  Is this something mainstream or real niche?  Surely the average Japanese thinks it's strange or weird too, right?
6161  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Girls want games! on: August 22, 2006, 09:57:50 PM
Puzzle games.  How could I forget that?  Even the ladies I know who aren't into gaming in the slightest adore puzzle games.  My mom loves games like Bust-A-Move, Bejeweled, Tetris, and the like.  My late great-aunt could spend hours playing Tetris.  And why not?  The games are fun, intuitive, and addicting.  

Then again, even the older folks in my family are game junkies; either that or they adore gadgets and to them, game consoles are gadgets.  My great uncle always used to steal his daughters' Game Boys to play on and loves card games on computer.  My dad's no gamer, but he had a Pong machine back in the 70s.  And the one Nintendo game he actually played was Rad Racer.    

Who'd have thunk it, market researchers?  The ladies (at least the cross section I know) can dig Tetris and Tekken.
6162  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Girls want games! on: August 22, 2006, 05:54:31 PM
Gender of protagonist is helpful, but not always necessary.  Some of my female friends adore the Zelda series and Kingdom Hearts, both of which have dudes as protagonists.  

During pre-outing time kill sessions, the ladies dug Smash Bros. and Mario Kart too... but Soul Calibur was usually the most requested time-kill game.  

And I believe love adventures are popular among female gamers in Japan and most of those put you in the shoes of a boy.
6163  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Girls want games! on: August 22, 2006, 09:33:52 AM
"industry experts" understand numbers and statistics but not people.  And statistics only tell so much.  And it's quite easy to lie with statistics too.
6164  Media / Miscellaneous Games / lan play space action game on: August 22, 2006, 12:19:32 AM
I don't think Halo's what he's looking for.  Sure Halo 2 allows you to hijack vehicles, but it's an on-ground shooter rather than a flying one.  

I believe he's looking more for something like Descent with co-op.  A first person game where you're piloting a spaceship.  

The space shooter genre is one I grew up with in the 8 and 16 bit days.  I loved co-op shooter games like Stinger, the Thunderforce games, Forgotten Worlds, all that good stuff.  Spaceships, blasting stuff, boo yeah.  

Maybe that's why I liked Sigma Star Saga so much.  Nostalgia for shooters.  But that's an RPG with no co-op mode.
6165  Media / Miscellaneous Games / Girls want games! on: August 22, 2006, 12:06:04 AM
I always wonder to what extent market researchers actually interviewed female gamers, or just females in general, and actually, you know, ASK them what they would like to see in video games that would make it appeal to them.  

My product doesn't appeal to martians.  Well, maybe if I talk to some martians, I'll learn why.  

I think most market research has ZERO human factor and all they base their findings on is financial statistics (i.e. sales and box office numbers) and draw conclusions/make assumptions based purely on quantitative numbers.  

Where's the qualitative data?  Where's the human factor?  Who says women want games that harbor around relationships or sweeping storylines?  Just because women enjoy romance in movies like Titanic or The Notebook doesn't necessarily mean they'd want that in their video games.  Excepting the ladies here at RPGfan, the ladies I know in real life would probably be turned off by the love adventures I play because they are rather cumbersome in comparison to fighting or puzzle games which are more intuitive and have fast action where you can just get in and play without needing patience.  

I remember one time a few years back, some friends were meeting us at our dorm suite before we went out to the bars.  A couple of the girls in our circle of friends were over and we were trying to kill time.  So we decided to throw on some Soul Calibur.  The girls (both nongamers) sighed, but we gave them the controllers first and once they selected their characters and started beating each other up with Taki and Sophitia they got into it (trash talking and everything), and we had to pry the controllers out of their hands when the rest of our friends came over so we wouldn't miss the bus into town.  I did try to introduce them to more story oriented games (i.e. FF7, Septerra Core, The Longest Journey, even some love adventures) but they were all like "nah, this is boring.  I like those fighting games."
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