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At The Beginning
Monday, March 17, 2003

Okay, I know I asked for letters on Xenosaga. No, I'm not complaining that I didn't get any - in fact, I got quite a lot. Furthermore, I wouldn't mind more!

But that's besides the point. I set aside the Xenosaga letters for today in favor of letters on other topics. Why? Well, I decided it would be safer to put them all into their own update(s), so the column would be.. mainly Xenosaga, and possibly spoilerific. And that's better off consolidating (is that the right word?) the spoilers into one or two updates instead of having them scattered across several updates. Makes sense, no? Yeah. Or something.

I've seen a LOT of megabytes of Final Fantasy X-2 footage, and it's... interesting to say the least. The game's obviously not without its share of fanservice - I'm afraid of what the massage minigame is going to be like - but it looks as interesting as it sounds. The menus are a hell of a lot nicer than FFX's, and the chain attacks in battles look like fun. Rikku's a bit annoying in battle though.

And I'm too poor to import it, so I'd better stop watching these videos before I spend money I don't have. ;P

Belated Happy St. Patricks Day people, now go read some letters.

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I what?

Hey Liz,

Good to see you back. It's been a long time. In a previous post, you said you HATED Suikoden III. How come its on your waiting list? Anyways, The two best February rpg picks for the ps2 is definetly Xenosaga and Dark Cloud 2. I absolutely hated Dark Cloud 1 because of the boring dungeons, weapon breaking, and thirst management. Dark CLoud 2 took all those away and came out with the best action rpg for the ps2 as of right now! Yup, even better than Kingdom Hearts! Xenosaga...well it's Xenosaga. I really didn't like the first hour or so, but once the story gets going, it doesn't let up! I say it is in my top 5 rpgs already and I only played 10 hours or so.

I want to know more about Star Ocean 3, mostly the story and gameplay. What's the story about and how does the gameplay work? And also, when you get news about Xenosaga 2, be sure to post it immediatly. Thanks.

...are you sure? I don't recall ever saying that - in fact, I'm quite sure I never did, since I'd remember if I ever hated the game in the first place, and I never did that either. Unless it was a typo I somehow overlooked. Now do you wonder why it's on my waiting list?

I think everyone hated Dark Cloud for some reason or other. I sure as heck never touched the game, but I hated the fact that it was labeled as a Zelda killer... and I'm sorry, but Zelda's pretty damn hard to.. well, kill. I have no comment on the game itself, but I'm more than willing to skip it and go directly to its sequel.

You know, I really don't know much about Star Ocean III story wise... but again, I guess there's not much to know anyway, unless you talk to someone who's been playing the import. Gameplay wise, it looks pretty action-RPG ish, but for all I know I'm very wrong in that department too. As for Xenosaga Episode II, well, I'll be covering that as usual, if someone else doesn't beat me to it...

 
Or maybe Square Electronic Arts.

Lately, I have been hearing rumors on the Squaresoft Entertainment being in production on a sequal to FFVII. Of course, at first I didn't believe it my self, but then I started running into more and more articals about the topic. This got me intrested and decided to do a little research and compairing.

What I found was quite itresting as well. It seems that the rumors seemed to be basicly based on not WHAT the sequal was going to be about, but more on WHO'S point of view it will be told from.

As I continued to search, I found that most people believe it will be told from ShinrA's point of veiw. They also believe that it will be the same story as the first FFVII just told as ShinrA see's it.

Personally, I highly doubt this for the following reason's:

1. Who would be the final boss if ALVALANCHE defeats Sephiroth and there is no one other than these two groups that are considered a threat.
2. Who would the hero's and main characters be? Reeve would be occupied acting as Cait Sith and god forbid if it was the TURKS.
3. The story would end in tragedy seeing as ShinrA is destroyed in the end.

But this is not the only rumor I heard.. I also hear that it may be told from The Cetera's point of view, taking place before JENOVA crashed to earth. Makeing it more than likly not a sequal, but a prequal.

This I have more faith in this than the other. I'll E-Mail you more when I find something, Until then,

Sail La Vi,
*~Demon Star~

Any kind of Final Fantasy VII-2 rumors would be indeed hard to swallow. And you know how it all started? By a Square staffer saying he would merely LIKE to do one. The part that the fanboys ignored was the part about not knowing how to go about one.

I have no doubt that it would be hard. Let's face it, any way they pulled it off, there's going to be something that the FFVII fanboys are going to whine about very loudly. Not to mention that I had more than enough of Shinra in FFVII (read: not the best enemy group out there), and I'd never, ever play a game that tells their view.

Although, if a prequel was made, maybe the story would be more fascinating... and maybe actually a bit captivating.

And out come the defending fanboys!

 
What would they name a GC Mario RPG?

I willl make an unusual start and say you have a very good site. I call it unusual be causeusually i have short whiney letter's. I feel some congrates is in order for you and the rest of rpgfan's workers for doing such a good job. Oh kay of nuff of that crap the topic said dream RPG's. I know I am only saaying what evry one else is thinking when I say Mush room kingdom rpg. Okay so I am saying what I am thinking. Think of tthe whole world of detail they could get into with todays concoles. You could not be fat., you could change colors of you costume.You could be any of the inhabitants from migets with mushrooms for head to Gorillas with ties you could battle. you could be a Mario fan and take aa brake from platform. I think it would be awsome and I care not what others say! It could be as simple as seven stars with upgraded graphics. If you dont know what seven stars is you are nieve or a litttle kid to old to remmember the good stuff. to close I will suck up to have my letter posted. I think your site is awsome. Especially the intuitive mail bar answerer.

JoJo controller of all that is after he says:

(note to self look mup the word intuitive.

So... a more graphically spruced up Super Mario RPG. But... come on, Mario wouldn't be Mario if he wasn't fat. It almost sounds like an online RPG where the customizing how a character looks come in. The character choosing... I guess could work somewhat like the SaGa games, where you choose one of several paths and... the SaGa characters eventually meet up, right? I never got that far...

Well, there WAS Paper Mario... which actually sounds like fun. I like the idea of having some sort of companion like a Goomba or Bob-Omb ... not to mention the idea of actually playing the game and beating it. Sigh.

Actually, I do kind of wonder if there would be any chance of a Square RPG based on Nintendo characters again in the near or distant future, since Square's developing for them again. I will forever be pining for my Metroid RPG.

 
The other eds haven't forgotten about me!

Hey Liz!

Nice to see you back to the Mailbag! For some odd reason, it's weird seeing other people do the mailbag. (No offense to the other editors who helped. ;P) Anyway, I had promised a LONG time ago that I'd submit some form of letter again here, so here it is. Aren't you just giddy with joy? (Probably not, but just pretend you are anyway. =P)

If I had some dream RPG, it would definitely be the new Castlevania game for the Playstation 2. I've been DYING for a non-GBA Castlevania for ages now... not that any of the GBA ones were any bad. Anyway, I'm very glad that it's finally coming true. Speaking of which, I am looking forward to Aria of Sorrow, which would partially fill that Castlevania void I've had for a while...

Now for some actual 'dream' RPGs, I'd say Brave Fencer Musashi 2, Okage: Shadow King 2, and Persona 3.

Brave Fencer was one of those charming games that I just couldn't stand people ignoring despite some of its flaws. I had heard that there's going to be a part 2 using a different main character, but for all I know it could have been a hoax. I haven't seen anything on this fabled game.

Okage, another interesting game (to me anyway), had some very unique characters and plot that I'd like to see again someday. I also love the concept of a shadow taking over some poor unheroic kid. Oh yeah, and I'd hope for better graphics, too... just because of the competition. Many I know of have ignored this game just because it doesn't look as good as, say, Final Fantasy X. Damn them all.

Persona 3... Yes. THEY BETTER MAKE THIS GAME. I know that Shin Megami Tensei 3: Nocturne will be made for the PS2, but it's still NOT Persona! I need another Persona, damn it! I've thoroughly enjoyed both games and would love to see a sequel. I, of course, prefer Persona 2:EP for the battles (part 1 was a bit klutzy with them) and wouldn't mind to see this unique battle system return. Plus, I just love Kazuma Kaneko's art style. So sleek and stylish.

That about sums it up for 'dream RPGs'. Now if you have asked about general videogames, you'd have to deal with my long list. ;P You are saved.

As for the lack of overworlds in the latest RPGs... as long as the game itself is good, I've got no problem with it. Final Fantasy X had that pin-point location thing that was pretty interesting. It also made it unique to the series. No flying around manually and getting lost, eh? Plus, it saves time. I remember loathing Final Fantasy 8's overworld (heck, I might as well throw in the entire game!) because running/flying around the world was exhausting and time-consuming. However, I do miss some of the exploration that comes with being able to walk around in the 'overworld'. I like finding secret stuff behind mountains. =P The lack of an overworld is limiting to the exploration and wonder... Ah, but that seemed to work better with the older titles like Final Fantasy 6 and Lufia. Hm, is it just me... or are these newer games focusing too much on graphics and bogging down on exploration elements that some of us still enjoy...? Maybe I'm hallucinating.

Now, as for Xenosaga... Screw that game! I've got Dark Cloud 2! Besides, I have no more money or time for any more newer games anyway. Being stuck at on a college campus 24/5 has unfortunately drained my account and my life. Damn, I'm pathetic. I WILL get it someday, though. ;P

Anyway, that's about it. Thanks for dealing with my letter.

JavelynZA
(... This name sounds awfully familiar. Or not.)

...Who are you again? :P

At the very least, I want a... uh, Shin Megami Tensei III localization so we can have something to make up for a lack of Persona 3. Not that it'll happen, but we can always dream. Why? I've heard that the MegaTen games tend to have similar moods and style of that of Persona games overall... and uh, I don't know how or if the series are related, so shoot me now! I do love Kaneko's art though...

I overlooked a lot of games I know, but... I blame a lack of time. :P Seriously, if I had all the time in the world (and I once did, except I wasted it on crap like Legend of Legaia, and played odd random things like MediEvil and Riven), I wouldn't have to overlook so much. Heck, I might even end up liking what I initially thought I'd hate, but oh well. Of course, when I DO get loads of free time, it now ends up being used on big games that I never even passed up... just delayed.

I can't wait to see a Castlevania with a... different style. (Or so we hope.) The GBA titles are great and all, but they're all under the influence of Symphony of the Night, which yes, is a great game, but can't be topped, so they might as well stop trying with its three GBA clones. Again, they're great games, so don't slaughter me this time.

Yeah, a lot of overworlds/world maps were far less fun than others. Obviously, the 2D ones were quicker to navigate, but 3D ones also allowed for such things as... um, really long and boring journeys on foot with elevator music in the background. (Seriously, was I the only one who disliked FFVII's overworld music?) Yeah, the overworlds had exploration elements, but at least in FFX, they were still able to keep those... after all, even without the ship, you can still walk all the way from Besaid/Kilika/whatever the first starting point was, to Zanarkand on foot. Or at least I think you can. Course, there are the titles that try to retain that exploration element and fail. Xenosaga, for one, can use improvement in that department in future episodes.

In some cases though, there does seem to be something taken out of a game for better graphics. FFX had that lack of difficulty until you got the original monsters in the Arena, and Xenosaga had the lack of stimulating gameplay, to say the least.

 
The most idiotic? I'm impressed.

Freedom French Fries. Heheheh. F3. .... *cough* (only pervs or people who know pervs will understand that.)

.... I don't have much to say cuz I haven't played many RPGs lately. :( Well, which isn't necessarily a bad thing since I've been consumed by them almost my entire life, and half of those were in japanese when my knowledge of japanese is katakana and 10 or 15 kanji symbols (y'know: sword, fire, god, useful stuff like that). Playing Xenogears in japanese had to be the most....... ......... well, idiotic thing I've ever done. At least with Grandia I could understand a little of what was going on just by the way the characters' facial expressions were, since there were at least two dozen for each person. :D :( o_O ._. ;_; :o :x #^_^#<---Now that's a story! Uh. The games I WANT to play, well, are really obvious of course, Wind Waker, SO3, BoF5, Xeno, blah blah blah. And I've been spending most of my time on Panzer Dragoon Orta, which is very far from an RPG, so yeah. I can't believe I actually have an X Box. Hehehe, how pathetic that I only have desire to play one or two games on it and for some reason I own one. Well, my brother owns one, but as long as he's under my roof I own it too. Well, not MY roof, but he's here and he takes my crap whenever he wants to so I take his crap too. Nice thing we've got goin'. *nod nod*

Uh. So yeah.

-Poojipoo

Katakana and 15 kanji, you say? I'd suggest you learn hiragana and... well, more basic kanji (along the lines of numbers, and simple/common words). While watching FFX-2 footage I was able to pick up more Japanese than I thought - this is a good sign. In games like FFX and Xenosaga, it's a bit easier for me to understand, since I know more words than I do kanji characters, plus there's always the good old facial expressions in those. And actually, out of what you want to play, I'd suggest BoF5... uh, last, really. SO3 isn't reaching our shores for a few months at least, and Wind Waker is supposed to be - possibly the best Zelda yet. Plus Xenosaga is, well, Xenosaga.

Though of course, Panzer Dragoon Orta. That's one of about two Xbox games I'd ever touch, and the other just came out for the PS2 recently. But since the Xbox is your brother's, now you don't have to feel so bad. Unless you have to watch him play Halo all the time or something. *shudder*

 
Mmmm... sequels.

Hiya.

Overworks said they were in the planning stages for the Skies of Arcadia sequal. It was brought up when a question about a Shinobi sequel was raised to one of the overworks people. Basically the person said they were to busy working on the Skies of Arcadia sequel to work on a Shinobi sequal. I cried when I heard this.

Oh Skies of Arcadia: Legends is MUCH better then Kingdom Hearts. It is also much better then Skies of Arcadia on Dreamcast. The reduced load times and random battles make a world of differance as far as gameplay. Also the great story and likable characters never went away. I loved it on DC and I love the cube version even more.

I love the rpgfan site.

Christopher T. Paluch

(Pssst... it's spelled sequel. =P Just trying to get you away from a spelling error I constantly made as a kid.)

As I mentioned last edition... lots of people have been craving a SoA sequel (and apparently I'd be too if I'd played the game), and here it is. Or will be. Or something. From what I heard about both SoA and Shinobi, perhaps it's better that they're working on a sequel to the latter, what with all the disappointment after Shinobi came out. Okay, so the disappointment wasn't nearly as huge as that of Devil May Cry 2, but oh well.

 
Closing Thoughts

My Xenosaga spoilerific column will be here in two days, don't worry. If anyone still feels like sharing their thoughts, go ahead. If you're... not playing the game, then I still have some other suggestions in the topic. In the meantime, I'll be sleeping in.

By the way... uh, I know I mentioned this a few updates ago, but does anyone have a Xenosaga lithograph other than Shion and chaos? Lemmie know.

~ Liz, who's afraid of green beer... (letters@rpgfan.com)



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