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Cooking Advice and Gaming Criticism - Editorial

Fowl SorcerousFowl Sorcerous Dread News EditorRPGamer Staff
edited September 2012 in Latest Updates
Pasta and RPGs don't have much in common. Except when it comes to critiques of long-standing traditions by outsiders. Discover the bizarre connections uncovered by the tabletop guy.

Spicy meatball

Comments

  • Strawberry EggsStrawberry Eggs A Familiar Teacher Administrators
    edited September 2012
    ...which is always done exactly as Nonna has made it since sometime when the proverbial "spicy meatball" was made out of brontosaurus.
    I'm guessing that would be around 1879, before it was realized that brontosaurus and apatosaurus were the same darn dinosaur.

    Okay, dumb, nonsense jokes aside, I am all too guilty of this. I am fully aware of this, have been trying to branch out from JRPGs, and haven't been successful. Sure I finished Ultima IV and started Ultima VII, but I have a long way to go. Part of it is my still unfamiliarity with PC gaming. Another is that I've yet to grow tired of the JRPG formula. As they say, though, old habits die hard, but I will try to incorporate different genres and types of RPGs into my gaming. I hope. :P

    As for certain long-standing JRPG conventions, I play a variety of games within the sub-genre that do and don't include these. I do tend to enjoy games that eschew conventions or try something different, but at the same time I'll still enjoy a more traditional game.
    " I think this is why aging makes humans die! "
  • TG BarighmTG Barighm Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    Heh. Sounds like this is aimed at Rya.

    And being Italian myself, I know exactly what Fowl is talking about, lol.
  • Rya.ReisenderRya.Reisender Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    First of all, as human behavior pretty much stays the same no matter what topic, you can use metaphors almost everywhere. Thus cooking and making games can easily be compared as well.

    The article is more about trying something new, though. I already explained this to TG once, it depends on HOW you try it and what your ideas are. JRPGs never have to be copied 1:1, but if their core elements are removed, it's really hard to still call them RPGs in the first place.

    I know plenty of unique RPGs that are awesome. Two free indie games Alter A.I.L.A. Genesis and Star Stealing Prince come to mind. They keep the traditional JRPG features, but add a rather unique story to it. Alter A.I.L.A. Genesis also is played as sidescroller outside battles, which opens room for new types of puzzles. Star Stealing Prince is special in the way it is narrated. It's nothing like any other JRPG story you've ever seen. Alone the way dialogues are written is unique, but also the general plot is something rarely seen in JRPGs (I guess Alundra gets closest).

    On the other hand, games that are like "hey let's remove the battle system from RPGs and make it more action oriented" or "let's elimite the feature of grinding, if the players aren't good enough, they don't deserve to see the ending" kinda ruin what is special about RPGs and thus can't really be accepted by me.

    It's exactly like with food. I really like spaghetti bolognese and maybe changing the spice / herbs a little might make them taste even better, but completely replacing an ingredient with an ingredient I hate will just make me hate the whole meal.
  • Fowl SorcerousFowl Sorcerous Dread News Editor RPGamer Staff
    edited September 2012
    TG Barighm said:
    Heh. Sounds like this is aimed at Rya.
    I say a lot of things about rya. one of them is that he consistently inspired good editorial material.
  • ironmageironmage chaotic neutral observer SaskatoonFull Members
    edited September 2012
    JRPGs aren't really analogous to a monosauce, though; they're a 50-item menu. Not everything is done perfectly. My ginger beef is a little bit tough. But I like ginger beef, and even if I tire of it, I can order the sweet-and-sour pork next time. Your goose liver pate may be prepared to perfection, but I don't really care for pate.


    Save points are mostly just an irritation. If I have to get up for work in the morning, I don't want to have to rush around for another 30 minutes to try and find the next save point. Perhaps in an SMT-type game they can help with increasing tension (if I mess up in this next battle I'll lose an hour of progress), but that is definitely an acquired taste.

    I won't give up my text-heavy cutscenes, though. One of my favorite parts of Nier is Kaine's backstory, which is presented entirely as white-on-black text.
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  • Rya.ReisenderRya.Reisender Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    Bringing up save points - they are actually a REAL motivation killer and often cause me to stop playing. In games were I can save anywhere anytime I often end up playing for hours without break, in games with save point, it depends on the distance between the save points. The longer the distance the more I feel "I want to take a break..." and the more tedious I find playing the game. It can even lead me to quit a game which I originally liked.

    Not to mention dieing after not having saved for 30 minutes or more.
  • DarkRPGMasterDarkRPGMaster A Witness to Destruction Moderators
    edited September 2012
    Rya, how DID you survive the earliest RPGs? Many of them either did not have a save system, or required you to visit a specific place to save. A majority of the "Save Anywhere" games were for the longest time on the Computer until around the mid 90s, where some started appearing on consoles.
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  • Rya.ReisenderRya.Reisender Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    Hmmm, good question. I guess I didn't mind it too much back then as I do today.

    Also the games I played during my childhood always allowed you to teleport back to the last town instantly. So if I lost motivation I could still just stop and keep all my Exp/Gold.
  • TG BarighmTG Barighm Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    Rya, how DID you survive the earliest RPGs? Many of them either did not have a save system, or required you to visit a specific place to save. A majority of the "Save Anywhere" games were for the longest time on the Computer until around the mid 90s, where some started appearing on consoles.
    Unless he started in the early to mid 90's where save points and teleportation mechanics became more frequent. By that time it wasn't all that bad.
    I say a lot of things about rya. one of them is that he consistently inspired good editorial material.
    Truly and honestly a "LOL!". XD
  • ZeraseZerase Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    I wouldn't mind a save anywhere feature because it is quite inconvenient to have to go looking for one while I'm trying to end play, but I also think it kind of adds to at least help me remember where I'm at, where I've been and what's going on. I oftentimes leave a game and don't return to it in months, if there is a save point or progressive save points in a dungeon, I can get my bearings back easier than if I just decided to save in some random hallway. It also helps indicate a sort of check point so you have a general idea of how much you have left of a dungeon.

    In regards to trying new things that was mentioned in the editorial, I agree that trying some new things is ok but not all. If I wanted my RPG to have combat like a shooter, I'd be playing a shooter. I suck at shooters, I don't want my inability to be good at the combat to hinder me from progressing the story. I haven't enjoyed shooters since the original Doom where there was the infinite ammo, infinite life, and walk through walls ability.

    Another thing I don't like in the "westernized" RPG is the option to choose my character's destiny. I'm not really in to that. I want to play the role that the game maker has given me. I don't want to change the events of the game based on what choices I make in what I say and what tasks I complete. I like linearity, though not quite as ultra linear as FFXIII although I still like the game. I guess I feel that you can't get as in depth with a story if you have so many variables in it. Point me toward some westernized RPGs that don't do that and I'll give them a chance. My only exception to this would be MMORPGs. I don't mind the the variables in them.
    Zerase ^_^

    Recently Finished: Suikoden II
    Currently Playing: Animal Crossing, Fire Emblem Awakening, The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons, Final Fantasy V

  • QuinQuin これはメタです RPGamer Staff
    edited September 2012
    ...it's met with defensiveness
    Sometimes, it's met with defensiveness because the 'criticism' itself can be extremely poorly thought out. I'm not dismissing valid, constructive criticism here, but I've seen other comments run the gamut of homophobia and racism.
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  • caddyalancaddyalan Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    The editorial stated there were games that lacked "...things like save points, cutscenes that are nothing but text at the bottom of the screen, palette swapped/re-skinned monsters, limited character customization, on-rails plots, and so forth..." but did not name any specific examples. What current video games do not include these gameplay concepts? Please specify what consoles, computers, or devices these games exist on.
  • DarkRPGMasterDarkRPGMaster A Witness to Destruction Moderators
    edited September 2012
    Allow me. I'm going by current meaning within the last few years, btw.

    No save points? Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky (PSP)
    Cutscenes that are nothing but text at the bottom of the screen? Fate/Extra (PSP)
    Palette swapped/re-skinned monsters? Growlanser: Wayfarer of Time (PSP)
    Limited character customization? This one actually depends on your definition of that.
    On-rails plots? Final Fantasy XIII (PS3)

    Those are just off the top of my head.
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  • CofLSilkCofLSilk RPGamer Staff RPGamer Staff
    edited September 2012
    Is it bad that I find the food part to be the most interesting? I always enjoy seeing how other people make the simple things I was raised with. I grew up with the same sort of deal in my house, though my grandma maintains that her Italian gravy (do not say sauce unless you want a fight) and meatball recipes are unteachable, sine it'll taste different no matter what...and she's absolutely right. The basic recipe my mother tough me (which my wife and I have added to), is as follows:

    2 28oz cans of crushed tomatoes
    1 28oz can tomatoe pur
  • Rya.ReisenderRya.Reisender Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    I have two thoughts about this:

    1. It appears that you will automatically like things from your childhood more. I for one, still like the cooking of my mother the best and I also still like the RPGs I first played in lifetime (Phantasy Star 2-4 and Shining 1-2) best and replay them regularly.

    2. I noticed that many people don't like spinach, but I like it a lot. When I tasted spinach from people other than my mother it did indeed taste horrible. I wonder if people just define their taste depending whether they try it out well prepared or not first. Maybe if those people who hate spinach did try the one prepared by my mother first, they'd actually like it.
    Is this how taste is created? That would be interesting for video games too as each time I try to analyze how a game is objectively bad/good, people will start with "It's all about taste.", but if that taste also depends on facts from the childhood, taste can just be calculated objectively as well.
  • Severin MiraSeverin Mira News Director/Reviewer RPGamer Staff
    edited September 2012
    Edit 2 - Turns out I can read but caddyalan's question is somewhat misleading. The editorial actually said (which it admits to be an over-generalisation) that these features are still considered a staple not that "there are games that do not have these".
    Palette swapped/re-skinned monsters? Growlanser: Wayfarer of Time (PSP)
    I found White Knight Chronicles 2 a much worse offender on that front.
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  • flamethrowerflamethrower Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    Steamed (frozen) spinach? How can you mess that up!? If you can steam frozen [insert vegetable here], you can steam frozen spinach. That's how my mother made it and that's how I like it. I actually don't like steamed fresh spinach as much. My parents have more money now than they did when I was little, so my mom usually makes steamed fresh spinach now instead of frozen.
  • Rya.ReisenderRya.Reisender Member Full Members
    edited September 2012
    I think you need to add more ingredients to it to make it taste good like butter and salt and stuff. I'd need to ask my mother later.
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