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Hoo-EY! Wowza! I got no less than 20 replies for this thingy! Very controversial! Thank you whoever mentioned this in the chat because I forget who it was! O_o Anyway, I wasn't actually able to print everyone's stuff because it's just be WAY too long, and people would get bored and leave.

Er, don't they already...

No, they don't! Everyone reads the entire mailbag, because it's short enough to be interesting! Right?

Interesting? Wha'?

Oh, go back to sleep. Anyway, I got all the newbies in and the ones I thought were really good (*coughMMXcough*) and the less ranting I do, the more stuff can be printed, so let's start! First off we have Ryuuhi. Yo!!!

Heya, it's Ryuuhi. About voice-overs....hmm, I think it's ok but in FFX's case, Squaresoft had better make an awesome dubbing work (I'd prefer subtitles) because lots of those "original version" fanatic fans will complain that this dubbing sucks and cannot be compared to the original. (DBZ anyone?) I prefer a minimum use of voices, just to add a few effects in battle(Tales and Star Ocean series for example), I prefer reading the text and imagining the characters voice by my own.

The same reason some people don't like watching music videos: you can imagine whatever you want in your head, but having to watch the video/listen to the voice means it's forced to be what the makers made it to be. Then again, since the guys who created the game were the ones who envisioned the characters, it might make sense for them to *know* what the characters are supposed to sound like... O_o Let's see an alternative view by Diesel.

What? Voiceovers? RPG characters are a bit like women, they should be seen and not heard! *waits for mobs of angry women to kill him* The only exception should be evil laughs, it would be so much better if I knew what "fwahahaha" actually sounded like. or maybe "fungah" from MRPG. Anywho, yea, voiceovers bad, text boxes good.

That's one point of view, certainly, although the majority of writers-in seemed to think good voiceovers are better than no voiceovers, while bad ones were worse. Next we have a man named Squall Thrawn - one of the newbies!!!!!!! There, don't you feel all warm and cuddly inside?

Yes! Ooh, that was so NICE... *hugs himself*

Go away. Somewhere where I cannot see you, hear you, or think about you.


*makes shooing gestures* Ahem. Squall Thrawn. Yes?

::A bright vertical line appeared in the air, then widened as the Gateway turned sideways to open long enough for Squall Thrawn. The Gateway winked out behind him:: Greetings, I am Squall Thrawn. I have been a frequent visitor of this site since the J*m days, but have just now posted a mailbag reply.

I think that voiceovers in RPGs are a very good thing. Voices can determine the personality of a character by the way they speak. Thus, you have a greater understanding of the character. Also, many RPGs love to include weird words that nobody in their right mind would be able to pronounce. If somebody spoke those words, then it would be much easier to discuss the RPGs without fumbling over the words.

Here is a non-RPG example, just to illustrate my last point. Before Star Wars Episode 1 came out in 1999, there was a debate over how to pronounce Emperor Palpatine's name. Was it Pal-pa-teen, or Pal-pa-tine? Since they never pronounced it in the original trilogy, we never found out until Phantom Menace came out. His name was pronounced, as Pal-pa-teen.

So why would voiceovers be a bad thing?

But anyway, i have unfinished business to take care of here before i go.

::Squall Thrawn raised his hands towards Ozzie. Ozzie had time to scream "Ozzie's in a jam." Then a bar of white fire hotter than the sun shot from Thrawn's hands, a glaring rod that banished all shadows. Before it, Ozzie became a shape of shimmering motes, specks dancing in the light for less than a heartbeat, flecks consumed before his cry faded::

There, all taken care of. I love the smell of balefire in the morning. Well, I must go. Have fun!!

::Thrawn formed a Gateway to Caemlyn. He walked through the Gateway, which winked out behind him::

*rematerializes* Well, they're getting a bit more original, at least. Yawn.

Sheesh. Why don't they think up their own targets to do insane amounts of sadistic damage to, huh? Muscling in on my territory, they all think they own me...

We *do* own you.


Er... nothing.

Ah. Well, Here's one by Future Trunks.

Hey everyone. Before I go on with this (and the second half of last) weeks topic, Booken, it's not nice to copy. I posted the original Ozzie death anim, so you are a stinking copycat. Have some manners!

Yay Booken! Evil evil evil! Copyright infringement! Illegal activities! Yes!

You need to broaden your horizons, methinks. Take up sewing or something.

Hah, sewing! Wait... can I sew evil things?

You can try.

Hmmm... evil embroidery... it's got a ring to it! *goes off to find some thread and a needle*


All right, on with the topic. My personal opinion is that it'll work for US games, but not for Japanese. Why? Cause when it's translated, it'll look like crappie Asian monster flicks (a.k.a. the words won't match the mouth) Likewise, American RPGs won't work well in Japan. Of course, I could be proven wrong when FF10 gets released, but only time will tell that.

It might be a bit tough to get it to line up (Xenogears did a HORRIBLE job because of that) but only in the FMVs; I think, though I'm not sure, that most of the voice work is in the regular game, where the mouths don't actually move exactly in tune with the words.

As for the second half of last weeks topic, I'm only gonna include what I consider "true" guests, or not Macc, Cid, or any of their Alter egos (Dark Macc, Dark Cidolfas, Lucca, etc.) My order, now.

1. Megaman 984.
2. Lunaris
3. Celes
4. The Adventurers! man
5. Megaman X
6. SpoonyBard

Well, that's my response. And remember, kids: Twinkies: It's what's for dinner!

Well, score another one for the purple dude. Here's another newbie named IceTyger. Whoo, cool name!!!! Of course, that's really just Ice Tiger spelled wrong. But I won't tell him if you won't.

Voiceovers in RPGs are okay, as long as they're done right. Like, for example, umm... ooh, I can't name any! Ehh, voices take up too much disk space anyway. Square might do a good job with the voice thing, but remember, we're talking about the guys who made Final Fantasy VIII and Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within...

*drops down on his knees in the middle of a field in the rain* Square, why hast thou forsaken meeeee!... okay, enough of that.

In short: good voices GOOD! Bad voices BAD! Skies of Arcadia voices MERELY OKAY!

Well, disk space don't matter much when you have a DVD. And remember that we're also talking about the folks who did FF1-7 and 9 and Tactics, Vagrant Story, Chrono Cross, etc. etc. I really have no clue how it'll turn out, and I also have no doubt that no matter how it'll turn out there'll be people who LOVE it and people who HATE it. Here's what Rascal has to say on the matter.

Hi Cidolfas,

I really was quite happy that all the RPGs I played on the PSX didn't have any voiceovers. That doesn't mean I don't like speech in games, I think it adds greatly to the experience of gaming. And I'm sure that the speech in FFX is absolutely wonderful - in the original japanese version that is. They have many extremly skilled voice-actors there, which is shown by their great performances in Animes. But for those who must choose an translated version of the games, speech really is a problem (when it's dubbed). American dubs of Anime shows are just mostly horrible - not neccessarily by themselves but compared to the original. So if buy the American version of FFX, I'm sure I will always have the feeling that I miss out on some wonderful creative japanese voice acting. The translation of text in FFs has become acceptable since FFVIII but I really doubt that the dub will be - can be - on the same level. An English version with untouched japanese voices would be the best option (and the cheapest one for Square). But unfortunately something like that won't happen...

I'll just have to work harder on my japanese studies, I guess....

Ah. But now we run into a few problems. Such as: if they're in Japanese, how the hell do you think you can understand them?! Sorry for yelling, but come on. That's fine if the voices are only used in battle cries, but if the story is done with them, how do you expect everyone to follow it? Second is your assumption that Japan is the only people with good voice actors. You really think in the entire US there are no good voice actors? The reason anime dubs are so bad is because they're usually done not by the company itself, but by fans. They don't have the resources that big companies have. Squaresoft certainly does have the resources, and I think they can afford quite decent voice actors. And also note that most people will not bother "comparing it to the original" since the original is in Japanese and they won't have played it. O_o Here are some neat points from ORACLE, another newbie!!!!!!

I think the voiceovers are a good idea, as long as there are subs in so that if you're for some reason forced to turn down your volume, you don't lose part of the story line

No argument there.

The best part of it is, you finally learn the proper pronunciation of some peoples names Example : FF8 Irvine can be pronounced Ervine or Erveen

Another bonus is you finally learn the voice of the characters, other than the usual death screams

And finally, after a long hours work, you don't get stuck reading all the text in the ending cinematics

Yep, certainly easier on the eyes, that's for sure. On the ears, maybe not. Here's a rare entry by Epicgamer, so let's make the most of it, hmmmm?

*walks in throught the stage door* You know cid, you should really lock that door, who knows when crystalys could come back. ^_^

AAAHHH! Damn, you're right! Wait a sec, I have a security team! Who cares!

ARRRRRRAGAGAG! BANZAAAAI!*Rush thru the door in search of Crystalys, blood-shooted eyes, brandishing various weapons that make you wonder how he can hold 'em.*

A very dedicated security team, to boot. And he doesn't even get paid.

Ahh the mailbag, it's been quite a while since i've sent in a submission, or even posted anything on the net, damn my total lack of time. Anyway, about voice overs.

I think voice overs are great if not over used, I personally don't like when every character in a game has their own voice (besides computer adventure games like Simon the Sorcerer). I do like how they used voices in Lunar SSS complete, it having numerous times when the characters talk outside the anime movies.

If that didn't clear up my thinking, i like voice overs but they shouldn't be over done so much that they become boring (or annoying because of high pitched voices).


Right then, i've got projects for 5 out of 7 classes so i better get going... (Damn my lack of magical powers, damn them!)

*Exits out through the door after installing a deadbolt* There you go, might not last long if lun gets locked out...

If Lun... uh-oh.

I'm baaackies!....*Test the door*...What the hell?*Blow the door to smitters in a humongous explosion*

Sigh... Lucca, when you have a minute, see if Merlin can take a break from Macc's HQ to work on the damn door... there's gonna be a draft.

Sorry, my e-mail's down. Some bastard took it over again.

Er... *sweatdrop* Forget it, I'll do it later... In the meantime, here's a once-in-a-lifetime event: a female newbie! Yo!!!!!!!!! ...!!!!

'lo Cidolfas, Lunaris,Lucca,Evil Ciddy,Ozzie,and whoever else might be in the mailbag at this time ((wait a minute,if your in a mialbag,how can all you guys fit and there, and how can it have carpeting? O.o))

It's a very versatile mailbag.

Well, i think voiceovers are a good thing, i saw a preview of FFX,the voiceovers are AWESOME,cept if you put it in a really stupid game *coughresidentevil1cough* with really sucky voiceacting *coughmakenxcough* i think voiceovers for FF VII would have been good during the cutscenes cuz in the fmv;'s they only have text,which was kinda dull (( i REALLY REALLY REALLY REALLY HOPE square will put in voiceovers for ff7,8, and 9 when the make the PS2 versions! ^_^)) and i hope SOMEONE puts my response in THIS time or their gunna get a BEATING WITH A BIG STICK! *COUGHCIDDYCOUGH* anyone got some syrup for this cough ^_^ bu-bye
-PS2 Princess, GIRLS RULE!!! WHOO HAWW!!

Er... I never got anything for last time... ^^; Anyway. I remember called FF8's movie scenes "the prettiest silent movie I've ever seen" or something along those lines. Seriously, it just seemed WEIRD that the characters didn't talk. I definitely agree that voiceovers would rock if they were remade. 8-) Here's another newbie now: Hamelin Rackham!!!!!!!! Damn, I'm running out of these.

Well, before I answer this week's question (Don't worry, I'll get to it eventually ^_^) I'd just like to address something. Cid... I respect you. Anyone who could take the mailbag in Macc's shadow and not fail deserves recognition. So this bard salutes you! ^_^

W00t! A salute! ...Hey, I'm a poet and I don't know it!

*Blast Cidolfas for punning such a...puny pun.*

I deserved that.

HO yeah!

Then again, so did you.

Huh? How come?

Because you're just so blastable.

Anyway, voice-overs, I believe they can make or break a RPG. For example, Brave Fencer Musasi, I think pulled off their voice-overs nicely, Musasi was a young, confident, and slightly sarcastic kid, and his voice reflected that. Same with the princess, typical helpless girl.

I think LUNAR 1 Complete pulled off their occasional voice-over nicely, it helped to add emotion to vital scenes, but they never put the text along with it, which kinda bothered me.

Now, voice-overs can be a double-edged sword. Nall's voice was way too high for that little dragon, especially considering he was male. Besides that, sometimes I think it's best to let the gamer imagine what they think the characters sound like, it helps em to feel more in touch with the characters in the game.

Well Cid, thank you kindly for lettin me share my opinion on the subject, and I leave you with these words:


Yeah? Name one who isn't! One!

Shhh... don't be anti-bard. The Anti-Bard Defamation League will be at our necks again. It took days to knock them all down with feathers last time.

*Ahem* Thank you. *Hands Cid a bag of exclamation points* Here, I've been savin em for ya!


Oh, one more thing, My first name comes from Hamel, from "The Violinist of Hameln" Do ya know where I got the last name from? Bet'cha don't! *laughs and walks off*

Er... I don't think that's very funny...

So do you know where it comes from?

No, nor do I particularly care. I guess I could do a Google search if I did.

Good point.

Well, here's a marginally non-insane letter from Eden. I think. I can never really tell any more.

Hiya Cid!

It's me Eden. Don't worry, I plan to make umm... more sence this time. Anywho, I realy hope you get this, my E-mail is changing and Shaw said I have to change it and I guess you didn't get my one for the last mailbag..... Anywho, I had something here but then I read the topic again and realized I was off ^.^' I thought you ment what I thought of voice acting! But I (hope) see it now. (I just read the part about the 10 times over, are you like phycic or something?) Oh damn, I still don't know! I may know but I think I don't and no one is helping me! So I'll just give you when I think you ment, this way if this topic that I think is your topic ever comes up, I will have alreaty replied ^.^ So, I think that having voice acting in RPGs is very important, so long as it is good. If it is originaly a Jap game and if you can find good voice acters to go over the Jap ones, then by all meens do! But if it is crappy without feeling or out of context, then no. So I guess both ^.^ Anywho, you didn't get my last Mailbag entery so I'll give you the most important part!

Firstly, I would not vote for Macc. I have read all this Mailbag and yes, they do make me laugh histaricly when the teacher beside me in the scholl is giving me the "What the help are you doing" look. But Cid, your mailbags are diffrent and they have other good qualitys that make me feel all warm inside. Keep it up! You're great! Celes' mailbag was... Well something out of my dreams ^.^ Go firgure hun :P
So funny, I must have taken 30 minutes just laughing! I wish she would come back and do another (Hint Hint!). And Lucca, super techno lady. Your mailbag was great ^.^ So funny! And I didn't mention You and Luny cause I thought everyone else would. Anyways Lucca, keep it up! Soon you will have a mailbag to call your own!

No, thank you. I have other hobbies. Not interested.

*breathes sigh of relief*

I cast my vote for..... Celes! Cause she like read my mind or something! (Guess I am never doing a mailbag :P) Anyways, I Lucca, Cid, and to a lesser extent Ozzie. Keep up the good work!
Your always,
P.S. Luny please no blast me! I replied I replied!

You better had! Else...ELSE!....

P.P.S. Cid, If you wanna interupt me at anytime with wity remarks, please do.
P.P.P.S. I do to make cent! Lots of it to!!

I don't have any witty remarks, really. Just extremely intelligent and piercing observations on society and the human psyche as a whole.

But when you think you're intelligent and you're not, that's pretty funny.

But that never happens, o'course.

Of course. *rolls eyes*

Well... er, here's a huge enormous reply from the Vault Dweller. Haven't seen him in months. And if I didn't print him, Lunaris would hurt me badly. Wonder what this guy's been doing with his life. Maybe he's really drugged out, and almost dead, and managed to write one last mailbag reply before he expires?

Actualy he been he been pettry busy with his Mentats and suchs. Altough in the last few months, he been attached to a pole trying to get ride of his Mentas addictions, really...


*roll in, wiggling in a white strap jacket.*

Hello everyones! The HolyVaultDweller is back after braving many dangers at the local desintoxation center of Vault 13!

....Okay, I lied, so what?

You may all rejoice again of my gracious presence! I've completly got ride of my Mentats, Nuka Cola or Buffots addictions! Arent you all happy?! Huh?! ARENT YOU ALL?!

*Jump back up, breaking thru the jacket with his sheer strenght! He hmms and look up*

I missed much, ain't I?...Lunaris hosted the mailbag, all the other cronies...a purple freak with two idiots wich one keep saying Obivious over and over somehow...And the guy from Adventurers! Mama mia, that was some busy weeks, issit?! Oh well! Dosent matter, since I'm BACK in action!

...So what the mailbag topic? Voices Actin' in RPGs, huh? Sound resonable to me!

Alright, it totaly depends. Lemme give a few example first, gonna be easyer to explain what I mean.

Baldur Gates Series: The stupid voices actors when you click on the portraits are, while cool at first, getting annoying to the core after a short while. Specialy in Baldur Gate 1, where the voice a really ear bleeding...Imoen specialy. But at some places, like the prologues speechs and bettewns chapters, and some character dialogues, it nice to hear long thiere voices is bearable. I heard in english they fine, so I guess it dosent really mattter.

Arcanum/Fallout: In this game, seeing they are rather a ...rahter freeform RPG in my opinion, they all got some rather nice English Voice Actors. Your NPCs, wich you dont give them order like a Supreme God Being That Watch Over It Characters but like if your avatar was talking to them...Thus why you cant really point and click to them. Thiere voices lines are what they says to you, even if it predetermined. The voices in thoses games are mostly for the NPC party members or critiqual characters you talk to in the story. Nothing else..and it add a little something...Thus far, I only heard good...From Sulik's native type of speech(GrampyBone ruled, folks!) going to the russian-accented dwarf Magnus...They were all great.

But I have a feeling, Cid, that you played neither of thoses games, issit? So, to all of your Computer RPGs illiterate, I'll go over to consoles.

StarOcean/Tales of Series: No doubts, adding that much voices in a SNES cart for StarOcean was amasing. I really liked the voices..and since they are translating them as we speaks(With a little contest or something like that to search the proper VA, I guess.), it will be even better for us, English speakers-only. Let not forget the little things they says befor each techniques, and at some points where it all vocale...Again, as loong the VAs are good, I dont mind it. I find it adds something to thoses games, in fact.

The Upcoming FFX: Your kidding, right? Not only it gonna feel wierd to have voices in a FF, but I heard that Titus(Hey, aint that the name of a old game main character?) had a real childish voice, more than it should be. I'm afraide that if the voices are bad, the game gonna suffer. How can you enjoy a game where you fear at each moment to hear the very fatefully annoying, earbleeding voice that you hate everytimes? Good riddance Square added a option to turn 'em off....They should do that too to the summons animations.

The Lunar Series: Not counting the fabulous anime scenes, the voice acting, by what I heard, while even childish, are fine. Sure, Nall in Silver Star Story voice is high to no end, but keep in mind it at 1 feet tall chipmuck...And that most the characters are kids. Once again, it added quite a bit to the game...And when semone talk about the Lunar series, it either ring in my head the voices, or the animes scenes...but I'm getting off topic, ain't I?

Deus EX: Okay, I lied, I'll talk about anoter PC Game. This game is FPS, but it considered RPG by many. EVERYTHING is in voices. Everything that speaks, in any cases. From JC Denton's deep deep scary voice to the peoples in Paris that speak a with a horrible english accent that make even me cringes, passing by Icarus'(a AI) mysterious and scary voice(And syntetic), everything fits in motions. I guess I dont have to say I like that game, huh? :D

Anyway, to finish and resumin', I dont mind voice acting, as long they nicely placed, they got nice Voice Actin', not brain exploding or anything. In fact, when properly used, they can really enchance your game...or if poorly used, just put there to look cool or that the producters follow the trend for the heck of it, destroy the whole game.

Well, that about it...About time too, huh? Now, if you excuse me, I'll go in the ReIntoxitation Center, I miss my Mentats...*run out

Er... That was nice. A few more and then we leave. Archone, take it away.

I think voiceovers, whether in a RPG or any other game, can be a good thing, depending on the quality of the voice acting. When Raziel defiantly protest, "Damn you Kain! You are not God! This act of Genocide is unconscionable!" with a voice filled with pain, but resolute in honor, that's a good thing. When Megaman X takes too much damage then cries out in a chipmunk voice, "It's time to get serious!" that's NOT(it's also not conducive to getting serious...). There's also the problem of translations. When a Japanese game is converted to English, it's a lot easier to convert Japanese pictograms into the roman alphabet and write out a relatively accurate translation, but if it's dubbed, then you have to not only meet the constraints of content, but also the time, making a given line take the same amount of play time to say, regardless of whether the translation is at all accurate. This is why most Otakus prefer subtitles over dubbing.

That's true, I guess... then again, Xenogears did the opposite - made the English sentences so tiny that the characters were just opening and closing their mouths with no sound for most of the FMVs. I can't imagine that it's that hard to just edit out a few seconds of movie... O_o Here's a tiny one by DarkAni:

I guess it would depend. I suppose it would be best with them speaking in japanese dialogue with english subtitles at the bottum, because the voices are usually better casted in Japan, and censors wouldn't edit anything out.

Um... it's Square's decision to edit things out. It's not Nintendo era any more where we exchange Holy for Pearl. That's why it's called "localization". Our last newbie is AlundraExtreme69!!!!!!!!! Get a new nickname, man. An easier one to remember, at least.

I think that that voiceovers is a great adduition to rpgs. Ever since FF7, rpgs were mainstream because of its graphics as well as quality plots and powerful music. Now with voiceovers, rpgs show their never lack of improvement with always getting better with every release. I think voice overs are great and for everyone I think is very exciting!

Awww, isn't that enthusiasm sweet? Kinda like the hordes of kids overrunning Harry Potter theatres right about now. That's all for today, my apologies for everyone who didn't get printed. *^_^* For next week, something a bit more generic: What's the biggest disappointment you've ever had in an RPG? I forget who mentioned this one, too. ^^; Feel free to interpret this however you want; use poetic license. As always, you can send all your junk in to and lessee if as many people care about it next week as they did this week!





I pity the foo who buyed a X-Box! Buy a GC and GBA, YOU INFIDELS!!!