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Wednesday, May 08, 2002

You know, despite today's not being a long column, I kept getting distracted by such weird things as IRC debates on Samus' hair color, other Metroid-related things, and who knows what else, Well, it's here. The update, that is. Not much to say, except that you're all insane, I've done nothing but chores and play Smash Bros. Melee, I have a sore throat, and that you should never watch the ending of Ocarina of Time unless you've played the game. (Zelda herself looks weird.)

...

Um, oops. I have a knack for spoiling myself. Especially when I read spoilerific letters, and seek out the spoilerific answers to post here. Today's column is spoiler-free though, so go ahead and read. And remind me to mark my spoilers. :P

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E-mail Daniel, unless you're a scammer from Nigeria.
 
 
OMG WTF LOL!!11111

Dear, and of course, I only say 'Dear' because I believe you may or may not resemble a certain four-legged woodland creature that many people like to shoot, kill, and eat, you pathetic fools, Dear You Pathetic, Communist, Deer-like Fools. Or should that be f00l5? Never mind.

I am Lord of all humans. I hope you already knew that. If you didn't know that, I should have you SHOT, because I am lord of all humans and I CAN DO THAT, YOU KNOW!!!!

Actually, the stuff my doctor gives me, it doesn't have any markings on it. Nothing in english anyway. I'm holding it right now. There is some stuff in chinese on there, and what appears to be a death's head of some sort. I don't know. Anyway, he's only charging me about six cents a bottle for it. But that's good, because now I'm going through six bottles a day. Six times six is thirty-six cents. A day. I know math, you see. I am lord of all humans. And it only took me several minutes to work out that problem. Because I. Am. Lord. Of. All. Humans. And. You. All. Suck.

I'm not annoying you at all in any way at all whatsoever in any way, am I? I would hate to think that I was annoying you at all in any way. Any way at all. Annoying you.

Super Metroid. I have that game...on an emulator! I am lord of all humans so I can use emulators if I want to, so there. And I beat that game, too. Well, actually, I never actually beat that game. I got to the part right after you get the grappling hook. I can stop playing games if I want to. After all, I am the lord of all humans, and the great overlord of all. All you. All you. All you humans.

Whoops! Just dropped that bottle. It's still in one piece though. That's because it appears to be made from some sort of badly made plastic. But...no, some of the medicine's coming out. Hey. It's burning through the carpet. Wait. Come to think of it, my hands are shaking. Really badly. That's why I just dropped the medicine. Hmm.. I'm sure it's not prematurely developing arthritis.

I'm in a bad mood. I think I'll have someone shot. Or maybe I'll go play Xenogears. I've beat that game in fifteen minutes you know. I am the lord of all humans, and even protoplasm, hey!

Damn! My hand's bleeding. Must be that medication. Maybe I should alhfoidhslfjewiohfoawiejklsvdhlaflsk jflgshdlfja hwlr hwlerhralej ahwkhlerwahkrwah

okay. my hand's back to normal now. No more involuntary twitching over the keyboard there, ha ha ha.

Maybe I should address the topic. I'd like to see some stuff at E3. Like Xenosaga in english! Hahahahaha! And maybe a price drop for the PS2 of about $295. Then I'd be able to buy it and actually play it. Yeah. I am the lord of all humans, though, and I know I have infinite money, but, wait. damn. they're onto me! Uh, I mean. er.

I'd also like to see more stuff. Yeah. [Change the subject, that's good, then they won't realize that I'm really not the lord of all...DAMN!] Yeah. er. secret of mana on the GBA. No, seiken densetsu 3 on the GBA. Yeah. Yeah. That's it. And then maybe Microsoft pulling the plug on the Xbox. That'd rule! Not that I couldn't use my godly powers to influence a decision for Microsoft, of course not.

Okay. Maybe I should stop talking before I let the secret out.. er. not that there is any secret, because I am the LORD OF CHAOS!!

So I'll leave you with a short story I wrote. By me. If you can understand it, I'm sure you'll find it...awe-inspiring:

1337 h4xx0r5
-0r-
)(3n0g34r5 r0xx0rs j00r b0xx0rs111
4 74|_3 0f 3\/1|_ 57uff
bY: |_0rD 0f cH405.
7h3 |\|4|\/|3|_355 0N3

1337 and h4xx0r w3re two 1di0ts who w3r3, j00 n0, 1d10t5 4nd 57uff? 7H3y w3r3, j00 n0, |_i3< fr3nd5 anD 57uff? 7h3y |_i<3d 2 pL4y |_i3k )(3n0g34ars 4nd 57uff? 4nd )(3n0g34ars r0xx0rs j00r b0xx0rs!

7h3r35 7h15 1d10t 7h3y ca11 f3i 4nd 57uff? and 7h3irz ci74n 4nd citAn r00x0rs j00 4ll 11111

4nd 7h31r5 w3l74ll? 4nd i75 a G34R111 aNd w3174ll kik5 j00r a55 3sp3c141 if j00r r4|\/|5u5 h3h3h3h3. 4nd j00 n0 3lly? 3lly is h4xx0r11 5h3 iN SO|_4Ri5! 4nd 73h G3B|_3R f00r5, it r0xx0rs!

c4i|\| 4nd 7h3 G4Z3|_ m1n157rj r0xx0r11 73hy g0ing t0 >i11 3v3ry1 D3U5 i5 g0d111 f3i i5 b1g ph00l, try1|\| 2 killx0r d3us hU R0xX0rz!

I r0xx0rs 411 j00r b0xx0rs b3cu5 1 4m |_0rd 0f 4ll huM4nz1111 h4mm3r i5 b1g |_053r. h3 3vi|_ jU57 li3k kR3|_|_i4n. bU7 f3i kick5 hI5 a55 aNd g3tZ TR4d3rr (4rd! f3i r0xx0rs j00r b0xx0rs! d0|\|7 h4v3 tr4d3r k4rd? gIv3 f3nr1r ho1Y p3nd4nt 4nd l3V3L inF1N1Ty r0xx0rs hamm3r5 b0xx0rs!

NE w4y, 1337 4nd h4xx0r w3r3 w4|_<1Ng 2 5k00l 4Nd w3r3 741<1Ng 4b0u7 )(3n0g34r5 4nd h0\/\/ 17 r0xx0rs 4nd y chr0n0 cr0ss 4nd whY 1t 5uxx0rs 3v3n 7h0ugh |\/|175ud4 d1d t3h m005ic, 4nd M175uDA r0xx0rs u3M4aT5Us b0xx0rs!

73hn 5udd3nly f1na|_ ph4n745y t3|\| c4m3 iN 4nd k1|_|_3d 73hm! t3h m0r4|_? d0n7 bUy f1n4l ph4n745y t3N i7 suxx0r5 b3cu5 i7 h45 t3h v0ic3 act1Ng 4nd yUn4 is ug|_y 4nd 71du5 i5 4 1337 ph001 111. g37 )(3n054g4 w3hn i7 c0m5 0ut b3cu5 I p14y3d i7 in j4p4N353 a7 mY fr31ndz h0\/\/5 4nd i7 r0xx0rz b3cuz k05-m05 iz h0t 4nd sh10|\| i5 a 1337 h4xx0r!

4nd 4n07h3r 7h1ng. i r0xx0rs 47 )(3n0g34rz bu7 h0w d0 j00 g3t r4m5u5 t0 j0in 7h3 p4r7y? 1 tri3d 2 r3viv3 a3ris bU7 w3hn 1 oP3n3d d1sC c0ver 4nd p0pp3d iN ff7, 73h g4m3 fr0z3111 4nd 1 w4n73d t0 g3t t3h cl0ud and f3i in t3h s4m3 p4rty111

bu7 i7 d03sn7 ma7734 b3cu5 )(3n0g3ar5 r0xx0rs N E w4y111 1 am l0rd 0f 4ll hu|\/|4nz1 me > 13370r 73hn j00!

7h3 3|\|d
[7h47 w45 gr473, w4sn7 i7?]

Lord of Chaos
The Nameless One
[by the way, Planescape Torment r0xx0rs j00. What other game has a main character named 'The Nameless One'?]

Schala:
Um, that's a really awesome story you wrote in. Are you sure you can't read what's on that bottle? Because I'm slightly worried about its side effects. :P

Eh, I'm pretty sure Xenosaga will be in English at E3, so I can at least compare the dialogues and see if they're any different. :P There's rumors of a PS2 price drop, but let's see if it actually happens. I guess it's too late for me though, since I already have.... two PS2s. I really agree with you on seeing Seiken Densetsu 3 coming out here - it's supposed to be pretty damn good and rival Chrono Trigger in terms of graphics.

First person to decipher the 13375p34k gets a cookie. Don't worry, I know what it says... but do YOU?

 
Knock and the door shall open... to E3.

Yo Liz,

"Ask and Ye shall receive." You asked for a letter, and that is what you got. One nice,super sized, combo deal sized letter written for the caliber of writing that I know to expect of you. First off, I was wondering what you thought of the Spiderman movie. It is a very good movie in my opinion. So, what are your opinions on it? Secondly, which console do you think will make the biggest splash at E3? I am personally looking forward to Nintendo increasing the list of reasons why I should buy a Gamecube. So, if it was a win-place-show bet here, I would place my money on Nintendo-Sony-Xbox, in the matter overall console goodies. I really do not know who would take best in show for software, but if Nintendo pulls through, they may have the best line up, solidifying their market presence.Thirdly, I was perusing the websites the other day and something caught my eye. Miyabe Miyuki is now writing the book of the game ICO. Officially, it is entitled ICO: Kiri no Shiro ("Castle in the Fog"). It is expected that the original plot will be expanded upon with more details of Yorda's imprisonment and Ico's childhood. Reading this, I realized that many other games could easily be translated to books as well. How this will fair in the actual market? Only time will tell, but hopefully, it is the start of a nice, new trend. I would personally like to see a Chrono Trigger novel, expanding more on the stories of the individual characters. Finally, I was wondering what you think will do more in it's first weekend out. Star Wars Episode II or Spiderman? I think Star Wars will make more because of the extra day.

And that's all I have, now spent after this!

Sincerely,

Dan Dormer, RPGFan Groupie #3

Schala:
Hmm, I wonder if my writing calibre has gotten better since my TRPG days. Well well, let's find out, shall we?

I think Nintendo's set to make the biggest splash at E3. Last E3, the GameCube didn't have very many really impressive titles to show off, the biggest GC title being Super Smash Bros. Melee and maybe Pikmin... this year, everyone's seeking out news and a chance to play Super Mario Sunshine, Zelda, Metroid Prime, Star Fox Adventures and so forth... mostly first-party titles, I know, but I can't forget about PSO. But those are the games that are going to sell more GC's this year. Last year, the XBox had even less to show and since the PS2 had had a head start, well. :P I think PS2 will have lots to show this year too, and I'm interested in both more than XBox... heck, I always was. Usually, what steals the E3 show is often a console company, and last year was Sony. I just have no idea what game will end up being 'Game of the Show' - MGS2 can only have that title two years in a row, you know. Besides, it's already out and needs to give other games a chance! :P

I always thought it would be interesting to see manga or movies of some of my favorite games, but I lean more towards manga, as the usually tend to go into more detail than their anime. Chrono Trigger, I would have especially liked because the characters would have really been colorful had they had more dialogue and scenes. It would be interesting to expand on almost any character there. If some games were released in manga form, I think they'd do well.

Spiderman was better than I expected... I guess being a fan beforehand didn't help much in not having too high expectations. I know a lot of people disagree with the ending, but I don't really see why they couldn't understand his reasoning. Star Wars is starting a day early just for those sales you know. :P Spiderman made $114M in its first weekend, and... normally I'd say that's pretty tough to follow since it's a new record, well, we ARE talking about Star Wars here, and it's very possible.

 
Unlimited Xenosagas? Err...

At the upcoming E3 convention....i'd like to hear something on the new Saga Unlimited game.....I've always loved the Saga Frontier series...even though number 2 was a little disappointing...it was still good and i'd love to see what Square has done with this new installment of the game.

Annoying hair kid

Schala:
I'm not a big Saga fan, especially after the first game (and thusly stayed away from the second) , but I'm wondering what the 'FF Unlimited' and 'Saga Unlimited' are going to be like, as compared to the original series'. Of course, Chrono Break has me the most curious... I'm not sure about my chances of actually hearing anything about it at E3, but here's hoping.
 
Only ten years?

Dear Schala,

I would like to take this time to reminisce about how far we have come over the years in terms of gaming. If you would, I would like all the readers and staff of RPGFan to participate in a moment of silence................................................................ Ok back to business. I was sitting around my living room today, watching re-runs of good old Saved By The Bell when I saw a commercial for Capcom's Residient Evil for the Gamecube. Now I know Resident Evil isn;t an RPG, but nevertheless after seeing this commercial, it really made me think about how far we have come in gaming. I remember back in the days of Nintendo when Zelda first graced American shores. When I first placed that 8-bit cartridge in my Nintendo, I was immeditely taken to a realm of fantasy beyond my wildest dreams. To me, Zelda marked the starting point for worldclass RPGs. Although I think Final Fantasy came out before it. I never really had a chance to play the first FInal Fantasy, for my first experience with Sqaure's masterpiece series was the ever popular and incredibly glorious Final Fantasy 3 for the SNES. Anyway, when I first played Final Fantasy 3, I was hooked on RPGs. So, naturally I went to the local Funcoland and looked around until I spotted a brand new copy of Breath of Fire 2. I eagerly bought it and played it through and was happy that I had found a genre of games which I could really get into. Pretty soon after that, Sony came out with their console they called the Playstation. I didnt get one of these however, until around Christmas of 1999. My sole purpose in getting the Playstation was that it was my RPG system. I had seen so many great RPGs come out incorporating the old-school graphics and battle system for the Playstation, that I was all too happy to buy my very own copy of Lunar SSSC as my very first RPG on this console. This game of course is one of my favorites and included some of the best music, characters, and story I had ever had the privelage of beholding. It was not too many years later that RPGs became so popular, that gaming companies including Midway were even getting in on the action and creating games for NextGen systems. This thrilled me of course, becuase having collected some of the best RPGs ever, (Chrono Trigger, FF 4-7, Secret of Mana, Breath of Fire 1-3, Ogre Battle MOTBQ, Lufia 2, Lunar SSSC Lunar EB, Star Ocean 2, and countless others) I was all too happy to get these consoles and anticipate the great RPGs to come. This brings me to the present year. Playstation 2, Gamecube, and even the X Box have taken the time to create masterpieces including FFX, Phantasy Star Online, and Elder Scrolls 3: Morrowind. In conclusion, like I stated in the very beginning of this long letter, we have come so far over the past 10 years, it really makes one think how great gaming will be another 10 years from now. Graphics, Music, Systems, everything is changing for the better. It is a great time to be alive, as well as a great time to be an RPG gamer. So, until next time, think about how truly lucky we are to have the oppertunity to play these games. Keep up the good work on your site.

SIncerely,
ExpertGamer30134

Schala:
Only ten years? I've been playing for fifteen! Well, almost. The Atari brings back good memories, that it does. Heck, those graphics are even more outdated than that of the first Zelda, Final Fantasy, Dragon Warrior, etc. I sometimes wonder how they can improve upon some graphics that you see today... or if games could even get more complicated. But personally, I'd rather not see graphics get too realistic - while it's impressive that they can get into that much detail, a game that just looks like reality can just look boring. So, you add weird twists to it. Even though I know how originally, it was kind of pathetic just to want a PSX for FF7... well, look how many PSX games I own now. I wonder if not for FF7, would I even have bought the thing in the first place...? I can't wait to try Lunar: SSSC - unfortunately, I can't say the same about its sequel.

And being a real game music freak, I like how music has come a long way, but at the same time, how some older soundtracks (CT) are still comparable to many of today's. And today, we have people like the London Philharmonic Orchestra recording our game soundtracks. (Of course, the LPO won't exactly fit on just any soundtrack...) I also like the diversity in music styles used in today's games, yet somehow, jazz still does not fit. My apologies to anyone who likes MGS2's ending song.

 
And just when you didn't think Japanese could get any scarier...

Dear Schala, or Chrono, or both of you depending on who's on this week,

I just wanted to thank RPGfan, for two reasons: first, for providing me with countless hours of procastination when I should be revising for my finals and second, for making me totally insane. I say this because of the following: The supermarket I usually went to when I lived in Japan used to play this awful song in the fish aisle, the kind of song that makes you cringe and forces your ear to ooze strange fluids (not unlike the effect Celine Dion has in many of us). What was worse and made you want to fall into convulsions on the floor was the fact that it was a 24-hour loop of the same song. Anyway, the point I am trying to make here is that even though the song was annoying and made you want to pull out a shotgun and destroy every Hello-Kitty product in sight, as much as I would personally like to cancel the ever-lingering memory of the Fish Aisle from my mind, as Kylie Minogue would later epytomise in one of her (also) crap songs, I doubt that I could ever get that sweet-and-sour melody out of my head. To further illustrate this, here is a transcript of the song. It goes something like:

"Sakana, sakana, sakana, sakana wo totteru to... karada, karada, karada, karada ni ii no sa"

It roughly translates as

"Fish, fish, fish, if you eat fish... body, body, body, it is good for your body!"

A year had passed and I was getting accustomed to living in England, without the Fish Song in my life -a somewhat empty yet satisfying experience. SHIKASHI! A few days ago I discovered the wonders of internet radio, thanks to the link in your site. Which brings me to my next point. Said internet radio homepage (kindly provided by RPGfan) has many stations worldwide that you can choose from and, being the uber-fan of Japanese music that I am, I decided to stray from RPGfan Radio (I confess! I'm sorry!) and listen to another station that plays Japanese hits 24 hours a day, in order to keep up with the music and be able to make small talk with my friends in Japan. I was a happy puppy, listening to the likes of Love Psychedelico, The Brilliant Green, Dragon Ash, even -bleugh- Hamasaki Ayumi, when suddenly a new song started and the first few notes hit me....

"Sakana, sakana, sakana, sakana wo totteru to... karada, karada, karada, karada ni ii no sa"

YES, the jingle that for so long I thought was the product of the sick mind of a drunken Japanese businessman that in his non-existent free time goes to pedophile bars and considers Chinese water torture a pleasurable pastime was, in fact, AN ACTUAL SONG FROM AN ACTUAL SINGLE FROM AN ACTUAL JAPANESE ARTIST. As a pathetic side note, you will be glad to know that the song is not called the Fish Song, but that it has an actual title (as I said before, it is sung by an ACTUAL artist). The name of this godawful creation is "Osakana Tengoku", or "The Honourable Fish Heaven". I hate the people responsible for this and hope that they die a horrible and painful death. So, I'd like to thank RPGfan for making me totally insane by making me endure this endless torture (endless because it will not be before 20 years time -hopefully- that I will be able to forget that melody), product of me forsaking your great radio station. I can now see that it was all contrived, just to make my life an empty and hollow shell leading to an ignonimous and unlamented end! THIS WAS YOUR PLAN ALL ALONG, WASN'T IT? Thanks to all of you I am now a PSYCHOTIC MANIAC and will bear that in mind whence I proceed with my next murder and change my name to Id! So thank you, THANK YOU! THANK YOU RPGfan!

Eternally yours,
A.

Schala:
....Heh. Amusing indeed. The Japanese music world isn't the only one with such strange songs - have you HEARD Barenaked Ladies, Weird Al Yankovic? There's a lot of awesome Japanese music out there, just the Fish song isn't an example of that, so don't let that cloud your judgement on Japanese music in general. Not to mention, there HAS been even weirder Japanese songs out there - I KNOW I'm not the only one to hear that 'Yatta' song. And hey, there's nothing wrong with Ayumi. She has some awesome stuff, let me tell you.

Of course, you can't ever really limit yourself to one type of music, you'd get sick of it way too fast. I'm glad RPGFan Radio helped you at least a little, although I should mention that switching supermarkets could have been another solution. :P

 
Hmm... seven more years of PS2 games? Don't think so.

hi schala

wot do you think about the news on the ps3?I cant believe theres gonna be no cds/dvds/cartridges and an all online fibre optic system.It dont sound that great.Anyway it wont have even been finished development untill 2005 so after a couple of years delays etc it probably wont be out in japan until 2007, america 2008 and uk 2009 which is a long time.

RPGste

P.S. im sorry that i called u stupid but u dont have to change your teams. I never bothered.And i havnt played xenosaga or lunar or any other games that havnt come out in europe.

Schala:
The PS3 news didn't thrill me all too much either, but at least it won't be out until 2005 at the earliest. It made me further question Sony's plans, because unless there's a huge trend of change in gaming in the near future, if Sony sticks with the PS3's plans, it won't go over too well. I mean, if the games on the PS3 are, say, 2-4 Gb each, you're going to need a pretty big hard drive to download all the games you want, PLUS save files. I wonder if it's an attempt to guard against pirating - that might be the case, then again, piracy may find its way around it somehow. So basically, you have this box with a light that you plug into your TV and play games with. I wouldn't mind their idea so much though, if they made it backwards compatible, and in that case, it could play DVDs too. As I said in a previous edition, it's great that Sony wants to focus on the online gaming trend and all, but what happens when they start to focus a bit too much and companies still developing traditional console games get turned off, and/or they just stop bringing traditional games to Sony's systems?

Lunar hasn't come out in Europe simply because there's no company licensed to publish it out there... GameArts is Japan-only, and Working Designs, the US publisher is...well, US-only. And don't worry about Xenosaga, it's not even in the US yet. I played the Japanese import.

 
Closing Thoughts

Remember kids, IRC is bad for you. Very bad. So is very fruity Japanese music. So are odd online quizzes, such as... nevermind, you don't want to know. So is not writing in to me. So is my pointless rambling, like so. And don't forget I need letters for Friday. Even if you've already written in about our posted topic, write in about whatever you want. Even cupcakes.

~Schala (letters@rpgfan.com)



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