kitsunebi77

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19 hours ago, kitsunebi77 said:

Here's another pair of Wizardry 7 guides, this time from Login.  Because why would you want all of your strategy guide in one book when you could pay twice as much for two?

These are advertised as the "official" guides, and what I find interesting about them is that while one volume - the "monster and item" book - is by a Japanese author (Makoto Takeshita, who I feel like I've seen credited on other guidebooks), the second "dungeon solution" volume is credited to Sir-Tech Software and a Japanese translator. I wonder if the publishers had the rights to the western strategy guide but felt it didn't live up to the standard of Japanese guides so had to commission an entire second book to cover what they thought was missing.

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10 hours ago, orenronen said:

These are advertised as the "official" guides, and what I find interesting about them is that while one volume - the "monster and item" book - is by a Japanese author (Makoto Takeshita, who I feel like I've seen credited on other guidebooks), the second "dungeon solution" volume is credited to Sir-Tech Software and a Japanese translator. I wonder if the publishers had the rights to the western strategy guide but felt it didn't live up to the standard of Japanese guides so had to commission an entire second book to cover what they thought was missing.

The Japanese-exclusive guide was published first and offers very little in the way of "strategy."  I'd consider the first book a lore book, and the second book a strategy guide.

 My assumption is that the Japanese publisher was aware of how massively popular Wizardry was in Japan and decided to "milk it."  The first part of the Japanese-exclusive guide is essentially a glorified manual, containing all the same information that anyone who owns the game would already have (unless the Japanese manual was lacking, I suppose.)  And the second part is a mostly unnecessary bestiary and item section.  I say unnecessary because the second guide contains a bestiary and item section as well, but it only gives the reader the most essential information.  So rather than like the first guide writing a half-page bio of each monster, the second guide puts all of the monsters into a table/chart showing basic info like hit points, experience given, and levels on which they appear.

I've never seen the a Wizardry English-language guide, including the one that was adapted here, so I can't comment on it's quality/adequateness.  As for Japanese guides, there are good ones and bad ones, but one thing that's a verifiable fact is that there are MORE guides in Japan than in the West.  It sometimes seems as if every single game published in Japan gets at least one strategy guide (and possibly an artbook, as well).  And so far as Wizardry goes, as I said before, I've uploaded 35 guides covering the first 7 games, so an average of 5 guides per game.  I guarantee you that NONE of these games had 5 different English guides, despite it being a Western game series (at that point).  But then, if it's done well, does any game need more than one guide?

 

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This is an interesting one.  It's a book that came as part of a collection containing the first 5 Wizardry games for PC (disk images of the Apple versions were also included, which could be run on an emulator).  Despite being all in black and white, this book is actually pretty packed with information, moreso than a lot of standalone guides available for purchase.

https://archive.org/details/wizardrycollection

WizCol_0001.jpg

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OK, pretty sure this is the last Wizardry guide I have on hand (#37.)  This is for a remake collection of the first 3 games.  It says it's for the Saturn and PC editions, though I'm not sure why it wouldn't apply to the PlayStation version as well.  And since it's (partly) a console game guide, and not a super-niche (in Japan) PC-only guide, this one gets the full color glossy page treatment. 

I played the Super Famicom edition of this collection, which believe it or not was the last one to be released and didn't yet exist when this guide was published.  Imagine that - a SFC game released in 1999.

Personally, I recommend the SFC version, and not just because of the spiffy English-translated ROM that's floating around.  In my opinion, the 2D dungeon graphics (well, it's a 3D perspective, but 2D sprites) look much nicer than the 3D polygon dungeons of the PS, Saturn, and PC versions.  But the dungeon maps and whatnot should be the same, so I see no reason that this guide wouldn't apply to the SFC version as well.

https://archive.org/details/wizardryllylgamynsagavisualofficialguide

large.1609216908_WizardryLlylgamynSaga-VisualOfficialGuide.jpg

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Shining Force Gaiden: Final Conflict is a tactical RPG from Sega for the Game Gear that takes place between Shining Force and Shining Force II for the Mega Drive/Genesis, filling in the gap in the story.  Unlike the other games in the series, this game never made it to the West, although fan translations exist.  I've always meant to try the Shining Force games some day, since I can tolerate tactical RPGs much moreso than regular JRPGs, but I've never found/made the time.  I'll guess I'll just put them on my massive list of things I might find time to do when I retire.

https://archive.org/details/shiningforcegaidenfinalconflicthisshoukouryakuhou

large.384790623_ShiningForceGaidenFinalConflictHisshouKouryakuHou.jpg

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Anyone have any details or an archive on how exactly Archive.org's image conversion works (when it converts your upload into a JP2, etc). For example, this upload. The image extracted from the PDF (presumably the original upload) via Photoshop is 300 DPI with a height of 3025. But the JP2 conversion is 72dpi at 6050. On top of that,  the scan data says 600dpi for some reason. Archive only converts the images if you upload a comic archive format (CBR/CBZ) it seems (my own .zip upload didn't get converted). I've been avoiding the converted JP2 files, but still, I wonder why the JP2 was upscaled? Have any of your uploads been messed up like that in their JP2 format? I wonder how many unfortunate people out there have been downloading the converted format instead of the original files.

https://archive.org/download/ys30thanniversarybookhistoryofadolchristin

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Well, it saved that Shining Force book as a regular 72dpi in the same resolution, so I guess it was just a random fluke. The moral of the story is, avoid the JP2 conversions.

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6 hours ago, Habanero said:

Well, it saved that Shining Force book as a regular 72dpi in the same resolution, so I guess it was just a random fluke. The moral of the story is, avoid the JP2 conversions.

As in all things digital, anyone who doesn't want the quality to be compromised must download the original file, not ANY kind of conversion (well, there are SOME lossless conversions like FLAC, but none that are used by the Internet Archive as far as I know).

I've never even considered that anyone would actually download the compressed JP2 files (mind blown), but I have heard of people foolishly downloading the garbage-quality PDF file that archive automatically generates, since some people are unfamiliar with the CBR format, so they don't realize that it's the one they should be downloading.

Just look for the biggest file and download that one - it's the original.  Anything else has had its quality ruined by archive's automatic file derivation.

6 hours ago, Habanero said:

Archive only converts the images if you upload a comic archive format (CBR/CBZ) it seems (my own .zip upload didn't get converted)

I believe the reason that the compressed JP2 and PDF files are created in the first place is for archive's own use for the preview flipbook created whenever a cbr or pdf is uploaded as a text file, in order be browsable on less bandwidth.  They really aren't meant to be downloaded.  A zip file won't create a flipbook, so those compressed images aren't created and only the original file can be downloaded.

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I hope nobody minds, but I've decided to draw the line at adding arcade card game magazines to the database.  They're big business in Japanese arcades (they'd have to be to support multiple magazines devoted to them), but since we've never had anything similar in the West (to my knowledge), and they can't be played by anyone not actually standing inside of an arcade in Japan, I just don't know who would possibly want to read about them here.  Especially since they seem to mostly focus on soccer games, and from what I've gathered in forum posts through the years, most Retromags readers are adamantly opposed to the existence of sports and would like to see all athletic activities and games based upon them banished from the universe. (I kid but...no, no I don't.  You all really seem to despise sports.😋)

So none of these:

81WQ+1rZyML.jpg91HMJXW8bRL.jpg

 

Of course not ALL arcade card games are soccer-themed, even if those are (obviously) the most popular.  And although I'm not interested in arcade games myself (the only game I ever play in arcades is Taiko no Tatsujin), it's still worth investigating, if only to realize that there is an entire subcategory of games in Japan that Westerners are never exposed to.

https://gamecola.net/2017/05/playing-scannable-card-games-in-japan/

https://www.beastsofwar.com/video-games/tabletop-otaku-arcade-card-games/

http://www.nintendolife.com/news/2018/05/feature_diving_down_the_rabbit_hole_with_japans_arcade-based_trading_card_games

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1 hour ago, kitsunebi77 said:

...most Retromags readers are adamantly opposed to the existence of sports and would like to see all athletic activities and games based upon them banished from the universe. (I kid but...no, no I don't.  You all really seem to despise sports.😋)

I'm a sports fans and love to play them though soccer not so much. 

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59 minutes ago, ml0045 said:

I'm a sports fans and love to play them though soccer not so much. 

🤫 Watch yourself.  People around here might not like to get off the couch, but they'll do it if that's what it takes to stick a foot up a sports fan's ass.😂

Seriously, I'm not into playing sports myself, but I don't mind watching them (not so much on TV, but I enjoy them live).  And more relevant to the comments which I was referencing, I can enjoy sports video games, whereas other people on these boards seem like they would be happy if such things were made illegal.

On a sports-related note, the New Zealand vs. Italy match of the Rugby World Cup was set to be played earlier today at a stadium that's a 5 minute drive from my home, but it was canceled due to a (mild) typhoon.  Not that I had tickets.  I guess it betrays my American upbringing, but Rugby is a sport I don't really "get."

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1 hour ago, kitsunebi77 said:

On a sports-related note, the New Zealand vs. Italy match of the Rugby World Cup was set to be played earlier today at a stadium that's a 5 minute drive from my home, but it was canceled due to a (mild) typhoon.  Not that I had tickets.  I guess it betrays my American upbringing, but Rugby is a sport I don't really "get."

Is this the same "mild" typhoon that is nearly 900 miles wide, producing wind gusts of over 130 miles per hour, and estimated to dump somewhere in the neighborhood of two feet of rain on you? Like...what on earth does a typhoon have to do to receive an upgrade to major or even ordinary status?! :)

*huggles*
Areala

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21 minutes ago, Areala said:

Is this the same "mild" typhoon that is nearly 900 miles wide, producing wind gusts of over 130 miles per hour, and estimated to dump somewhere in the neighborhood of two feet of rain on you? Like...what on earth does a typhoon have to do to receive an upgrade to major or even ordinary status?! :)

*huggles*
Areala

The boring answer is that despite canceling the Rugby World Cup match (which they decided upon a couple of days ago), it ultimately ended up being nothing but rain in this immediate area.  If you look at this picture, you can see the folding-accordian retractable roof which could have solved that problem.

City-of-Toyota-Stadium-1024x768.jpg

The more facetious (but still true) answer for what it would take for a typhoon to be serious would be for it to be bad enough that I don't have to go to work.  This one was on a Saturday, so irrelevant, but it takes almost all of two hands for me to count the number of times I've had to drive to work in a typhoon.  Meanwhile I can count the number of times a typhoon has allowed me to stay home from work on ZERO fingers.

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6 hours ago, kitsunebi77 said:

I hope nobody minds, but I've decided to draw the line at adding arcade card game magazines to the database.  They're big business in Japanese arcades (they'd have to be to support multiple magazines devoted to them), but since we've never had anything similar in the West (to my knowledge), and they can't be played by anyone not actually standing inside of an arcade in Japan, I just don't know who would possibly want to read about them here. 

 

 

Remember Boonga Boonga, the arcade machine with an ass? 🤣

boongga-boonga.jpg

 

6 hours ago, kitsunebi77 said:

Of course not ALL arcade card games are soccer-themed, even if those are (obviously) the most popular.  And although I'm not interested in arcade games myself (the only game I ever play in arcades is Taiko no Tatsujin), it's still worth investigating, if only to realize that there is an entire subcategory of games in Japan that Westerners are never exposed to.

https://gamecola.net/2017/05/playing-scannable-card-games-in-japan/

https://www.beastsofwar.com/video-games/tabletop-otaku-arcade-card-games/

http://www.nintendolife.com/news/2018/05/feature_diving_down_the_rabbit_hole_with_japans_arcade-based_trading_card_games

I have a few cards from the Dragon Ball Heroes game. I think the game itself looks kind of boring but the cards are pretty cool. Some of those cards are really expensive.

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5 hours ago, Ethereal Dragonz said:

Remember Boonga Boonga, the arcade machine with an ass? 🤣

Yeah, I remember seeing pictures in EGM or some such.  At the time, I assumed it must be some weird sexual thing.  Now, having lived in Japan for over a decade, I realize it's all about the two-handed kancho, which, having experienced it myself, I can confirm is anything BUT sexual in nature.  It's still plenty weird, though.  And talk about weird cultural exchanges - trying to explain to kids that in America, we actually DON'T consider ramming our index fingers up someone's asshole to be hilarious hijinks...

Even odder still, this bizarre cultural phenomenon isn't limited to Japan.  I hear it's popular in Korea as well (and indeed, Boonga Boonga is a Korean game).

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Any UK gamers here?  If so, you probably love this game (unless you're one of those console-only people, in which case...er...I guess you were probably playing the Master System instead.)  Dungeon Master seems to be one of the most beloved and respected of all RPGs in Europe, while remaining significantly less revered in the USA.  I think the obvious reason has to do with the platform it was developed for - the Atari ST - which had very little presence in the USA.  Released for the ST in 1987, it looked amazing, but by the time it was finally ported to DOS in 1992 (and thus received widespread attention in the US), 5 years had passed (a lifetime in computer tech in the 80s/90s), and both the graphics and gameplay were no longer ahead of their time - indeed, they likely seemed outdated.

https://archive.org/details/dungeonmasterperfectguide

large.1554537231_DungeonMaster-PerfectGuide.jpg

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2 hours ago, kitsunebi77 said:

Yeah, I remember seeing pictures in EGM or some such.  At the time, I assumed it must be some weird sexual thing.  Now, having lived in Japan for over a decade, I realize it's all about the two-handed kancho, which, having experienced it myself, I can confirm is anything BUT sexual in nature.  It's still plenty weird, though.  And talk about weird cultural exchanges - trying to explain to kids that in America, we actually DON'T consider ramming our index fingers up someone's asshole to be hilarious hijinks...

Even odder still, this bizarre cultural phenomenon isn't limited to Japan.  I hear it's popular in Korea as well (and indeed, Boonga Boonga is a Korean game).

I'll just leave this here...

https://www.tofugu.com/japan/kancho/

*huggles*
Areala

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