MAP Episode 96: Australian Christmas

In this picture, Nate Liles invents Guitar Hero fifteen years before Harmonix.
Nate Liles is Amazing!

Download Link: Produced 2010.12.19

There’s nothing bigger than Christmas antipodean style, and Australian Christmas doesn’t disappoint. Earnings forecasts are down, Foster’s sales are up, and Nate Liles is conspicuously absent and almost certainly drunk. Get out your semaphor kit, mate!


  1. -FFVII’s translation is littered with errors, but conversations tend to flow fairly well. Xenogears’ translation is littered with errors and the games characters frequently fail to speak as normal people should. I have found that sometimes they try to cram altogether too much information into a sentence (when they could delete part of it while still conveying much the same content), other times the order in which the information is presented is just plain unnatural. I’m OK with spelling and grammar mistakes because my brain just automatically corrects that stuff, but people who speak like they cannot construct a natural sentence really grinds my GEARS, so to speak. FFVII doesn’t have a great translation, and I never claimed it did, I just used it as a point of contrast to Xenogears comparatively worse translation. It is not the worst translation that I have come across, not by a long shot, I just felt compelled to offer that up as a counterpoint to you lauding the Xenogears translation to the skies, because I really don’t think it is that great, not even when compared to contemporary AAA JRTPG titles.

    -The 360 DVD’s are not large enough to accommodate the Shenmue games, unless the compilation is DL only. Personally, I’m hoping for Daytona USA, that would make my year.

    -I do wonder whether any success of World of Starcraft will just cannibalise the success of WoW … if they only manage to garner the same player base over too properties instead of one, then that only equates to more effort on their part. IMO, they would be better off making a Diablo Online, as that property would have the potential to bring in people from without the hordes of WoW tragics.

  2. I wish FFVI would get a remake like what FFIV is getting on the PSP. Cleaned up 2D with properly and appropriately enhanced music etc on hardware that isn’t too proud to still support 2D.

    I personally found the GBA port of FFVI a step back in every aspect including the extra dungeon. Yet, I found the PSP remake of FF1 superior to everything that came before it, definitely including the GBA remake Dawn of Souls and PS1 Origins.

  3. @Cram: Agreed. The PSP remakes of FF1 and FF2 are easily the best remakes of classic 2D JRPGs which I have ever seen. I would be totally over-the-moon if *any* game in the classic FF series were to get that treatment, and I am well glad that FFIV will.

    Now, they need to do the same with FFIII, FFV, and FFVI. Give us the first six games remade in that wise all on the PSP. If it wasn’t the king of gaming portables already, it will be then.

    @SN: Er… I think you have it backwards, mate. World of Warcraft is so similar to Diablo that I doubt you could possibly make a World of Diablo that wouldn’t essentially be identical to World of Warcraft. Talk about one MMO covering the same playerbase as the other. For the most part, World of Warcraft isn’t populated by fans of the RTS game or genre.

    World of Starcraft on the other hand would almost certainly be a space-oriented, sci-fi, futuristic MMO which would bear far less resemblance to WoW than World of Diablo. It’s the safest bet of the two options if you don’t want to split your playerbase, since World of Starcraft would very possibly bring in fans of games like KotOR, Mass Effect, and (::shudder::) SWG.

  4. Didn’t anyone play The After Years? It’s fairly decent and been out on WeeWare for over a year. It’s not like there’s anything else on Wee that’s must play first. If you want an semi-old school JRPG you can’t go (too) wrong with it. It’s actually pretty hard in parts for one thing.

    FF1&2 PSP may look pretty, but I’ll still take the PSX version, loading times and all, over the GBA/PSP Dawn of Souls version anyday. Replacing MP charges with a standard MP pool, adding Ethers to FF1, and a number of other changes went from updating the archaic-not-fun parts of the originals (except FF2’s broken character progression), and just plain dumbed down the difficulty to the point of not being worth playing. Black Mages were glass cannons with limited ammo in FF1 on the NES (and PSX) in Dawn of Souls you can spam their most powerful spells every turn by buying up too cheap Ethers by the time you get to the Vampire. There’s something seriously wrong when White Mage/Black Mage/Black Mage/Black Mage is the Easy Mode party.

    Also: Super Meat Boy GET! It’s on sale today on Steam and pretty awesome. (You need a wired 360 controller to play it though.)

  5. @Lusi: I was talking about bringing in the people who got upset that Diablo III was too colourful …

  6. Oh, I get it. Titan = moon of Saturn = space = Starcraft. Verily, the logic train is pulling in to Truth Station.


    Space-based MMOs not named “Eve Online” suck ass and do not work. Everyone that wants a space-based MMO plays Eve, or will play the new Star Wars mod for WoW.

    “World of Starcraft” would just be a pollution of the existing game. Warcraft made the RTS-to-MMO jump because of the RPG elements built in to Warcraft III.

    If I had to guess, Blizzard is looking to create a very casual-friendly, maybe even browser-based, type of sandbox game, with an entirely new IP. Remember, Titan has been used in many different, non-space contexts.

  7. @Lane: No one plays EVE except people who HATE fun. It’s not an MMO at all–it’s an economy sim with a grinding mechanic. Tedious and awful.

    World of Starcraft is what people have been asking for for years. I would be very surprised if Blizzard went the SE route and ignored them.

    @EP: I played through After Years. I really hated the Moon Phase mechanic and found the game very, very grindy at points.

    Also agreed about FF1 DoS being way, way too easy. But, you can’t argue with the production quality of the PSP version either. It slays the PS1 version in every conceivable way.

    My hope is that FF4 complete will leave the gameplay entirely alone whilst simultaneously updating graphics, sound, and script a’ la FF1/FF2 PSP.

  8. @Lusi: Blizzard can only expand into the margins, unless they wish to cannibalise their pre-existing player-base. They already have everyone else …

  9. FFVII’s biggest problem with the translation was the use of “clones” to mean “a thing that isn’t a clone as anyone outside Sony Computer Entertainment America understands a clone to be.”

    I need to get going with my Xenogears playthrough (I did FFVII during the Summer so it’s still fairly fresh in my mind). I’m trying to finish up The After Years first. I’ve got two or three of the side stories to finish and then the second half of the main plot.

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