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Welcome to another Mailbag, folks! Getting up there in numbers, isn't it? Well, it's just me hosting this time. The group couldn't get together this week long enough to be able to complete a Mailbag...

Oh. That's REAL surprising.

Quiet you. Anyway, I volunteered to do a solitary Mailbag. When we first took over, there was a plan that if we couldn't get together one time, one of us would do a Mailbag on his own. This little agreement was just forgotten.

Way to go. Smart move there.

Energon, shaddup. I COULD force you to host all by yourself.

Yeah. And I could make it the worst Mailbag ever. What's your point?

My point is that you need to get the first reply.

Obviously.

Isn't that just loverly... Fine. First reply comes from IonMage.

Hi, this is IonMage speaking, observer of the mailbag and patron of RPGclassics for a while. I have now actually decided to reveal myself.

Don't reveal yourself TOO much, Ion. This is a family Mailbag.

Now that the intros are done....

First of all, my minigames are going to be a bit more FF-ish, particularly one of them. But they can still be done in non-FF RPGs.

First is one involving an airship. Wing commander style! Your flying around the world, and all of a suden some fighters appear out of nowhere (hey if it happens on the ground, it happens in the air too), and the game switches to first-person view inside the cockpit, and you have to dogfight your way to victory! And theres this wierd 'scoring' system, where you go up in the ranks, and earn prizes for them. At 'rookie' rank, you could get a small weapon thats standard issue in the air corps (or whatever is giving out the prizes), be it a dragoon's spear, or a pistol. At 'Master' rank, you could get the ultimate summon. Forget bahamut, summoning an entire fleet of bombers would be devastating! Especially if some of them had nukes....

Another one could be (bear with this idea for a moment) owning a trade business of sorts. You could import things at low prices, sell them at high, etc. That may sound lame, but think of what other sidequests could branch from it. By forming good business relationships, you could open up some new subquests. Or, for that ultimate weapon that EVERY game has, you might need some rare materials that are not found off of slain dragons, mechs, and what-have-you, but from trade.

Ok, maybe that one isnt all tooooo great, but if done right......

Now, for my FF-specific on

Chocobo hunting! (BTW, i got his off of someone, so if he is reading this, please forgive me :() Its chocobo season, and you dont know what you could get from it! The game will switch to a first-person viewpoint, and you hunt down the chocobos FPS styled! And such a task would need special care, and cunning, they can be sneaky litttle birds! You'll need to follow their' tracks, chase them, aim at them without alerting them, etc, to really nab the big one! And if you hunt the wrong one, or if its out of season, you get to fight some wierd ecological law enforcers of sorts!

Ok, that last one wasnt exactly serious, but hey, whatcha gonna do?

Hmmm... now what would be a good finishing move? I know!

*Summons the GDI ion cannon FF style, then warps out before anyone can do anything*

... Ow. Anyway, all those minigames sound fantastic! The dogfighting game sounds much akin to the ship battles of Skies of Arcadia but kicked up a notch. I've also always been a big fan of capitalism, so being a merchant as a side job to saving the world would be a new twist. As for Chocobo Hunting, we don't want everything to be serious. In fact, it's my opinion that minigames need to be less serious than the rest of the game to add an air of escape from the story. These minigames need to be fun, so making a game that's not completely serious works towards this notion. In other words, The Official 984 Seal of Approval goes to you.

That was a long-winded explanation.

Obviously.

Well, what can I say? It deserved it.

Obviously.

See? Captain Obvious agrees with me.

... Just, just forget it.

I could forget it better if I had another reply. Good thing I do.

Creatures of the mailbag,

Owww! Get off me! *shake shake shake* That's better.

Garland!

Sorry... I, Garland, felt like knocking him down...

My minigame involves escape. However, it's not just any escape... you escape in MAGICAL ARMOR similar to that of FF6! Your characters have just gotten away. However, the badguys are getting closer! You quickly hop into some nearby armor and escape over the waste dump you're hiding in.

Here's how it works. There are certain kinds of garbage that will do your armor damage (your armor can take 32 hits before it breaks; if it breaks by any means, it's Game Over for you!) You have to bump into this garbage for it to do you damage; this is similar to a 2D shooter game, with you at the bottom of the screen dodging right and left. There are certain other kinds of garbage that will engage you in battle if you bump into them. They give you great EXP and GP if you win, but ideally you don't want to get into a fight at all because... there's a timer.

The bad guys, having seen your escape, have activated the trash compactor. The trash compactor moves slowly because of the heavy things it has to compact (like broken armor and weaponry) but it moves inexorably. You have 4 minutes to escape before the compactor turns your armor into so much scrap metal and you into an unfortunate casualty of the garbage machine. Once you escape (IF you escape), your armor explodes from the damage it has taken, so you don't get to keep the armor.

That is my idea of a good minigame. It's not too platform-y, but you still get a break from the boring overworld. Any minigame that involves the use of mechs is a good game in my book.

Sincerely yours,

Edmund Smith

If Kagon were here, he'd agree with the mech comment. However, your game sounds a bit like Frogger. A common part of RPGs is the fact that it relies more on wits and statistics than good hand-eye coordination to win. There's a good chance this minigame could make many gamers mad, and that's not a good thing. The idea is noble though.

But if it's a minigame, wouldn't it theoretically be optional.

Many minigames like this must be completed at least once in order to complete a game. But hey, why do I care? It wouldn't be too difficult for the reason above. Good thing our next replier agrees with me.

No he doesn't...

QUIET!

Good evening. RPG Knight here.

I once wrote into the mailbag, and I was shunned for putting my text into a .doc file. Iíll burn them all! Heheheh! Fire! Burn them all!

firefirefirefirefire!

Hahaha! Oh! Whoops! What was I talking about again?

Minigames. Designing your own in fact.

Oh yeah. Design your own mini-game. What would I do? Hereís an idea!

I like the idea of battling mid-air like a dog-fight, and picking up weapons and shooting people down with them. Thatís not that original, but still, itís not exactly like many dog-fight mini-games youíve played before. Iíd say itís a cross between the Dog-Fight mini-game from Super Monkey Ball 2 (or the one from Mario Party 3) and Cel Damage.

Thatís all I have to say. If you donít like it, Iím adding your name to my list of "Things to Burn." Have a nice day!

Well, we already got an idea like this, and I liked it, so I can't be burned. Energon can be burned though.

Hey!

What? You can be burned. Paper burns, and you're Lord of the Paper Cuts. Thus, you would burn.

But I'm not paper...

But you DO use paper a lot, so you must have some on your person. Thus, that paper would burn which would in turn burn you. Hah. I win.

But...

Can't argue with logic like mine. So, let's go to another reply since arguing would be futile. Go ahead, wizardmaster.

*random flashy exit*

(If you noticed, I never left the last mailbag. :D)

And if you'll notice, we did end the Mailbag. That negates your not leaving the Mailbag arguement.

*random flashy entrace*

Yet again, I am the wizardmaster! Your favorite non-newbie! Hail me! Please? Come on, HAIL ME!!! *Wizardmaster is pummeled with hail* I sure asked for that didn't I? On to the mailbag...........

*Begin intermission* *Elevator music plays*

Oh no you don't. Intermission ends now.

Ok, my Idea for a mini-game is.......Wait! This is the intermission! Don't read this!<

*End intermission* *Elevator music ends*

Now that that is over... my mini-game would be....uhhhhhhhhh...........uhhhhhh........oh! It would be a game were you squirt Ketchup (or Catsup) and Mustard at cars under a bridge! Someone honestly tell me that would not be awesome!

That would not be awesome. There.

Another cool thing would be some kind of hidden arcade! In it would be games like pong, pac-man, and the best game ever, Galaga! Galaga r0x0rs! It would be super hard to get, and very not worth the effort.

*Random flashy entrance*

Just kidding

*Random flashy exit*

Yeah, uh, you can do the hidden arcade thing somewhat in Shenmue, and it really isn't worth it, so you'd be correct there. As for squirting condiments, how would this fit into a game where the most technology they have is from an ancient civilization 1000 years in the past that for some strange reason doesn't seem to have developed plastic squeeze bottles? The technology just wouldn't exist for that game!

What ARE you babbling about?

The lack of plastic squeeze bottle technology in a supposedly technologically advanced civilization. Psh. They can't be that advanced if they don't have plastic squeeze bottles.

...

Once again I have baffled you with my logic. Good to know.

I should just quit now.

No. You should get the next reply.

If it would make you shut up, fine. Next up is Last Cataclysm.

Well. A tasteful Mini-Game? That will be kinda hard for me...

How about "Bomb Kagon Whooo?"

I like it!

No. Sorry, Just kidding there! Anyhow, the only one I have in mind is "Cook all Cook".

Like SO 2, you have to buy food and utensils to cook with. Except, when you cook something, you can use stands in certain cities to seel your food, or start a restaurant!

The objective is to attract 100 customers. By cooking, advertising, or just getting your female team mates to........"Show off".

That's all from your local Insane stranger!

Once again, I approve of this minigame since it involves capitalism. Anything that adds to our blessed consumer driven economy is fine by me.

You sound like a raging fanboy.

*Waves a Go Capitalism! mini-flag*

Wait... They SELL those? Jeez...

Obviously.

Of course they sell them. They're capitalists. You don't expect capitalists to GIVE these away, do you? Hah. Once again, you can't argue with my logic.

Not like I'd want to try...

Good. Arguing is futile

PC Glenton/David here... Damn, I should have signed the last letter... now everyone knows my real name. Of course, there is the little fact that David is a common name... ah, never .

The perfect mini-game... well, mini-games, IMHO, are a distraction from what would otherwise be a tedious process of monster killing, looting, and questing. An icebreaker, if you will. So, the games should not really give up anything too important, or give any Uber items... just a good reward worth winning, but not too good, to warrant mastering one tiny aspect of the game.

Pondering this, I have come up with this: The hero is in jail/incarcerated/grounded, and needs to break out. So, a maze appears, and you have your hero trying to sneak out. There are the usual enemies, of course. Have them change as you progress. Start with patrollers, then gradually build up to guys that can track you down.

Along the way, there are tokens the char can get, which can be transferred into prizes at the end of the mini-game. So, there is motivation to take risk, but it is not necessary if you are not an expert. And, even if you get caught, you lose only about 40% of the tokens you have, and someone will rescue you later, so you get something for trying. Forgiving, I know, but hey, I want to play an RPG, not a maze game.

Just my two bits...

So basically, you're having a person escape from jail as a minigame? Yeah. Real original...

Still a nifty idea with the tokens though. And uh, I like minigames giving uber items. If you want some obscure uber item like the ultimate harp, you should master some little part of the game! That's the whole purpose of minigames.

Or they're there to be an escape from the game...

Yeah. That too. An escape from the game that gives you something REALLY good.

Well, yeah, I guess that makes sense.

Obviously.

Well, let's keep this going. ClothHat, you're up.

I suppose you want me to start out with some vaguely humorous insane opening huh? Well you aren't going to get one from me! I'll just get right into it, desgining your own mini-game.

Well, you're no fun.

A mini-game of epic proportions, where the entire game focuses on beating the mini-game. The game begins with just giving some background on your characters and the world, blah blah blah none of that matters. Then your characters discover the mini-game, the most fiendishly difficult mini-game ever beheld by the eyes of man! The last boss can be reached from the beginning, but he's a total wuss and just distracts from the mini-game. The entire game is spent training yourself to be tough enough to master the mini-game. And when you complete the mini-game you receive for your trouble some pathetically underpowered weapon. The mini-game should test for reflexes, intelligence, and how well your player character has trained. It should have supremely irritating music, and should you twitch or make the slightest mistake it will instantly kill you and force you to start over.That's pretty much it. ClothHat out, and remember; Just say NO to huggling.

That's just plain EV0L! I like it. But it sounds very suspiciously like any old RPG...

Maybe because that's exactly what it is.

Oh come on now. Who would claim an RPG would be a minigame in an RPG?

Look at those that said the FF8 game was the minigame in the last Mailbag.

Point to you, my good man. Point to you. Know what that means?

I get to grab the next reply?

Obviously.

Joy. Well, it's the last one. Go ahead, GG Crono 4.

Hey there, all. GG Crono 4 is in da hiz-ouse! ...did I really say that? õ_č

Unfortunately, yes.

Now, my own minigame, oh the possiblilties...part of me wants to say "Tifa strip poker", but the other part is trying to give a serious answer. Let's see now...

Another card game would be the obvious choice, but I don;t really have the time to think THAT up. :) I think a cool minigame would be a little RType-esque shooter. Maybe you could pilot a flying chocobo with a moogle riding it and shoot flying Bombs and Cactuars and what-not. Yeah, I think that would be cool.

Maybe a nice little game of whack-a-Tonberry, as well. ^_^

Anywho, that's all for now. Til next time, this is GG Crono 4, signing off! Rock on!

Man. Three people have suggested dogfight style minigames. I guess people really want that. Take notice of that, Square!

You really think they read this Mailbag?

Why must you dash my dreams on the jagged rocks of reality?

I'm just like that.

Oh. Right. Well, this Mailbag is over. Little change of plans for the next Mailbag though. In order to meet some little requirement, the next Mailbag will be put up NEXT Sunday, so you'll only have until next, oh, Saturday 5:00 PM EST to send in your reply. You're in luck though. The next topic is another Mailbag Free For All. Same rules as last time apply. Basically, they are 1) It HAS to be about RPGs. 2) Keep the language slightly clean. 3) Use proper punctuation at the least. We don't wanna deal with page long essays with only two commas. 4) Merl still r teh Dev0l. Send them in.

Another Free For All? Getting a little lazy are we?

Quiet. Oh. That reminds me. People, please send in topic ideas. We REALLY need them.

Begging won't do any good...

Okay. Fine. If you send in a topic, and we use it, you get to abuse Energon in your next reply. Sound good? I think so.

I don't...

Too bad. You don't get a say in it.