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4:41 PM on 02.17.2011

As Written By: Letters to the Editor, Part Three

Yo, GuuZilla.
I'm a popular gaming icon who has recently become unemployed. I first became popular in the early 90's with my badass multiplayer and frenzied explosive action. As time went on, I became significantly less popular, despite my best efforts at recapturing my fans attention by diversifying my games. Racing, Puzzling, Minigames... I tried it all, but nothing seems to work. Now here I am, my company has closed it's doors, I'm out of work.... Why did this happen and what do I do?

- Bummer, man

Dear Bummer,
Diversification was likely your first mistake. Just like every musician wants to become an actor, and every actor wants to have their own band, the urge to diversify when you become popular can be overwhelming. Don't believe me? Just ask everyone's favorite Blue Blur how diversification is treating him. Whether you're known for running fast in ridiculously clunky large red shoes, or dressing up like some weird scuba-spaceman and blowing up your friends and opponents with silly cartoon bombs, that is what your fans want. They don't want to see you in a karaoke game or driving go karts. They're here to blow shit up with crazy cartoon bombs.
As for what do you do now? Well, aside from acting as a cautionary tale for the rest of us, your best bet is to get a guest appearance in someone else's game and try to sell your franchise to another company. Good Luck!

Piddy pida pa pida,
Papidda paddy padiddy pa papa. Paddy papiddy piddy pida a piddy. Pappidy pi pidy apid adiddy. Pippidy paddy pa pi piddypa. Piddy piddy?

- Pa Piddy Patty

Dear Whoever-You-Are,
Please turn off your Animal Crossing filter and send that letter to me again. Thank you.

Dear GuuZilla,
I'm a very well known, respected, and well liked game character who has had many successful ventures into different genres. One of which is fighting games. I'm consistently ranked amongst the top characters in previous installments of a certain fighting game franchise, but for some reason, with the recent release of the newest installment of said series, I'm nowhere to be seen. I've always done my best to keep my fans happy, and they've never seemed to be upset with what I've done... so why? Why am I not in the new one?

- Feeling Blue Bomber

Dear Blue,
I don't know. Sometimes people just do stupid things and lose sight of what works in pursuit of something new. Fortunately, you're still available in the previous fighting games for us to remember you with, and let's not forget the possibility of downloadable content.   read

8:00 AM on 01.14.2011

Gamestop v. Destructoid? What is this, I don't even

So, another early morning Friday with no work, another jaunt to Gamestop's website to salivate over the immense release of games that I will never, ever be able to afford. Only this time, I stop on the front page. Something has caught my eye. At first, I think to myself that it has to be a mistake. Just random coincidence. I look again......

Wait... Is that.. It has to be... Gamestop has incorporated in one of it's sales ad banners what can only possibly be concluded as the lamest excuse for an attempt at copying Mr. Destructoid ever.

Now, I'm no fool. Not every robot is Mr. Destructoid, and I'm not so rabid a fanboy as to go around seeing Mr. Destructoid in everything... but look again. Forget for a moment that the robot in question is about as much like Mr. Destructoid as Kane & Lynch is like an enjoyable game. The robot is right there saying "Sweet". Deja Vu.

I have to say, if mimicry is a form of flattery, then the gang should be suing GameStop for defamation of character. C'mon GameStop. If you're going to steal... at least put some effort into it. Or some color. Or hire an actual artist.

Ah, well.   read

2:23 AM on 03.06.2010

As Written By: Editorial - Of Points And Promises (How Microsoft Has Failed Us)

As undoubtedly all of you know by now, on April 15th, Microsoft will be shutting down the online service to original X-Box games. This bitter pill has been somewhat alleviated by Big M's offer of a token amount of points, beta codes, and even an extension on the Live service for 360. Stand up fellas, right?

Well, you see, I kinda have a problem with this.

To begin with, How is it that Microsoft is dictating who gets their special little gift? They are giving these care packages to people because, and I quote, "We realize that you are an avid Halo 2 fan." I'm sorry? Could you please repeat that?

Oh. Okay.....
For those of you looking to read Microsoft's "Pot of Gold" Email yourself, this should work for you. Thank you Engadget for that find.

Aside from the Orwellian implications of Microsoft knowing that you are indeed obsessed with Halo 2, let's explore the issues surrounding this matter.

How does Microsoft determine who an "avid fan" is in the first place. When I first heard the announcement that Microsoft would be disowning the online portion of its original X-Box lineup, I immediately loaded up Halo 2 and downloaded all the extra multiplayer maps. Then I played a quick match or two. You see, here's the rub. I suck at playing Halo in multiplayer. Absolute SUCK. I've beaten the campaign for both Halo and Halo 2. I still own both games. I used vacation time to ensure that I was able to get to the midnight launch of Halo 2 and pick up my preordered copy from Gamestop. Waited with a buddy in line for over two hours to ensure that I got it as soon as was humanly possible. I own Halo 3. I haven't picked up ODST yet, but it's only a matter of time. However, due to my inability to not die in multiplayer, I have not logged much time in that mode. I still play it occasionally to see if time or screwing around with a wiimote has made me any better.
But I didn't get a magical email giving me points and a beta and an extension. Microsoft doesn't think I'm an avid enough fan to bother. You see, giving out rewards based on chance is all fine and dandy if you're talking about a contest. But this isn't. Microsoft is giving rewards to people based solely on it's own discretion of who it feels is worthy enough to get it, with no sign of what is required to meet said criteria. How does one prove one is an avid enough Halo 2 fan to qualify if one has no idea what exactly the qualifications are?

Sorry, dude. Not enough hours logged online. You, Sir, are not a big enough fan.

Also, let's not forget that Halo 2 is not the only game to use the Live service. What if I'm despondent over
no longer being able to catfight with other folks in DOA Ultimate? Or perhaps I'm upset over my loss of being able to Pokemon battle with crazed psycho powers in Phantom Dust? Sorry Burnout Multiplayer fans. If you had been into First Person Shooters instead of cars, then perhaps you would have gotten some lovin' from Big M too.

But you see, when we get down to the nitty gritty, while all these things irk me, they aren't the real issue. They aren't the problem that makes me want to cancel my Live account as you read. It's this.

If you purchased a Live enabled original X-Box game, either on disc or through download on the Live service, YOU DESERVE TO GET THE SAME OFFER FROM MICROSOFT THAT THEY ARE GIVING OTHERS.

When we purchased these games, we purchased them with the understanding that all the functionality provided by said game would be supported. When I picked up Halo 2, I don't recall seeing anywhere on the box or in the instruction manual where it was touting its incredible online support any warning along the lines of "Online support can be permanently terminated for this game when we feel like it". We all paid money for these games and part of that money went to the fact that we would be able to use them online.
Microsoft is slighting us not only by ignominiously choosing which players to award based on (I would imagine) the same formula they use in determining the real world value of their monopoly money, but by removing the functionality to begin with. To be fair, they are not the first to do this. SEGA pulled the carpet out from underneath me THRICE with Phantasy Star Online. Once with the Dreamcast and then again with the X-Box, and then finally on Gamecube with CARD Revolution. Needless to say, I'm not touching another Phantasy Star with online capabilities again, and it has made me leery about SEGAs business practices in general. But Microsoft should know better than this. The 360 has something that the Dreamcast did not have. A hard drive and the ability to implement downloadable fixes to games. Costing a bit too much to keep those Halo 2 servers up? Outsource it. Release a downloadable fix that allows you to connect to a third party matchmaking service and/or dedicated servers. Why is this not an option anyway? It's been pretty basic for PC games for quite some time.

Seriously, game companies. FUTUREPROOF YOUR GODDAMN GAMES. The game keeps all of the intended functionality. Fans obsessed with the playing experience of yesteryear get to relive their thrill, and nobody feels screwed over when they don't get chosen to receive a gift of magical space bucks.You get to save on your costs by shutting down or repurposing or whatever. Everybody wins! And for the love of all that is holy, stop expecting all of us fans to be okay with it when you pull this kind of crap. We are your livelihood. Start giving a shit about us.   read

7:04 PM on 08.07.2009

As Written By: An Editorial - Rev v. Jaffe v. Art, You're Doing It Wrong

Oh, Anthony. Your Rev Rant series is often such a great way to invoke thoughtful, meaningful discourse on a good topic. That said, you can imagine my shock to see this: Games as Art.

Really? Really?!?

Seriously, folks. Hasn't this topic been discussed to death, given a Phoenix Down, and then pummeled to death once more? I stayed out of this discussion since that day long ago when Kotaku posted the article on Ebert denouncing the medium, and haven't said word one on it since. I felt that the answer was too obvious to be commented on and that, quite frankly, the topic was pointless.

Not the first time I've been wrong.

IV, not VI... Stupid roman numerals...

Now listen up, kiddos, because this is going to be the first and hopefully the last time I discuss this idiotic debate. Let's start with the term "Art". Webster's defines art as "the conscious use of skill and creative imagination especially in the production of aesthetic objects; also : works so produced". Wikipedia states that "Art is the process or product of deliberately arranging elements in a way that appeals to the senses or emotions. It encompasses a diverse range of human activities, creations, and modes of expression, including music and literature". So to recap, art is by definition a work that is deliberately made to evoke either a sensual or emotional response. Are there video games made to have a sensual or emotional effect? Yes, obviously. Have people had emotional responses evoked when playing video games? Yuh-huh. Was this done through purposeful creative and imaginative skill? Yep.

Now, Anthony talks about video games as a medium, and its intrinsic artistic value compared to other well documented and universally accepted mediums. I, of course, refer to literature, motion pictures, music, sculpture, and so forth.

Oh yeah. Way more emotionally stimulating than any o' them newfangled vidya games.

Part of his argument is that other mediums have a bedrock of artistic work to prove itself. While this is true, video games do have a bedrock. Things such as Flower, Indigo Prophecy, Little Big Planet, and so many more have proven the artistic value of the medium many times over. Also, one has to look at the fact that other mediums have had a great head start on video games, both in time and in development. Considering that some of the other accepted mediums have had hundreds if not thousands of years to develop and to build this so called bedrock, I feel safe saying that video games are coming along better than one might expect.

See? Art is so easy, even a caveman can do it.

I believe that the larger concern for Anthony is the amount of games that are released that he considers base and not of artistic consequence. Specifically, he batters violent and actiony games for being superficial. There are multiple problems with this. Of course, we can begin with the fact that just because something is gory and violent doesn't mean that it doesn't have intrinsic artistic value. Art is, after all, in the eye of the beholder. Also, superficial is not always a bad thing. Passage was a five minute game played in it's entirety by walking to the right. How much more superficial can you get?

Anthony points out that in a year you will get a good handful of artistic games and a boatload of crappy "fun" games that are superficial. I would point out that for every thought provoking artistic movie released, there's fifty horribly ill conceived slasher flicks.

Just don't call it "High Art". We all know what Jason does to potheads.

Now, Anthony places blame on developer laziness. He points out that developers have no interest in trying to further the medium when guts, gore, and violence is all that is needed to sell a game to the general public and earn boatloads of cash. I'd say that this is at least partially true. Like the Motion Picture Industry, video games are a business. But it isn't the developers that are entirely to blame. As with any other business, if there is demand for something, someone will make it. Art games, however, have a tendency to garner unimpressive sales to say the least.

Hey look! A fire sale! See? See? It's funny!

Jaffe counters that while a great many developers would like nothing more than to make a Citizen Cain sidescroller or a Casablanca MMORPG, the issue is how to make it fun. A game simply doesn't sell if it isn't fun to play. I agree, but only to a point. Saying that artistic games just can't be made fun is a cop out. Okami was plenty fun. So were other "artsy" games like Patapon and Indigo Prophecy. Sometimes you have to take a risk, though. That's how all advancements are made, by banking on a risk and trying something new. Besides which, Casablanca? A love story about betrayal, deception and doublecrosses. About intrigue and sacrifice. Hmmm....

Yeah, this game so totally blows. More dialogue than a JRPG!

So in closing, what have we learned today?

We've learned that video games are indeed a viable and in fact already legitimized medium for art, regardless of what blustery overpaid movie critic elitists may have said some odd time ago. We've learned that consumers set a market, not developers, and thus share the blame for.. whatever Anthony wants to place blame for in the next Rev Rant. We've learned that developers like ideas of great artistic endeavor, but apparently have attention spans too short to bother with implementation. We've learned that I like using visual aids often, even though I have a great deal of trouble getting them to format properly.

Most importantly, though, I think we've learned that this topic should be buried deep within the bowels of the earth where it will never be seen or heard from again, because wasting time debating things as subjective as whether or not something qualifies as art is as meaningless as discussing whether or not reality is real.

I leave you with this promise and a final thought. While I will, as always, respond to any comments and criticisms anyone may have to what I've written, I will never initiate any serious discussion on this topic. Ever. Only in response to others and only in extreme cases. Because here is my final thought to you.

In the amount of time it took to read this article, whether you agree with my points or not, you could have been playing video games. Or looking up porn. Or doing something that was actually entertaining. All that wasted time, in the name of debate about something so silly.

Really? Couldn't think of anything better to do with your time. Not a single thing.

Goodnight, folks.   read

7:24 PM on 08.03.2009

As Written By: The Devolution of Square: The Mana Conspiracy

I won't lie to you. Bashing Square is one of my all time favorite things to write about. Consider this the first in a series of Square bashing articles, in which I will be voicing my opinion on when and why the gaming colossus fell from grace. Why pick on them, you say? Three dead simple reasons. The quality of their games have been in a steady decline for some time now. A company such as Square, which has set the high water mark for the RPG genre on several occasions should be held to a higher standard. Then, finally, because I find it both amusing and fun.

There will be vitriol. There will be spite. There will not be mercy. But throughout this article, please keep in mind that this is, after all, only my opinion.


What happened to Final Fantasy? Oh, I don't mean the Final Fantasy we have today, I mean the classic Final Fantasy of that rose colored yesteryear. Specifically, what happened to the standard of the JRPG? Turn based menu styled fighting. Square used to be the masters of that particular niche... and then.... something happened.

Final Fantasy used to be all about the old school menu driven turn based approach. Some might say that it still is, but I rather vehemently disagree. You see, one day, Final Fantasy VI was released. Don't get me wrong. Final Fantasy VI is and always will be a classic in it's own right. But it presented an unprecedented paradigm shift in how Square would make future installments of Final Fantasy. It introduced the Active Time Battle. Now you not only had to choose your attack options, but you had to do so in a given timed order, or else the enemy would start attacking again. Not that bad, really. It added a little additional pressure to battles and there's nothing wrong with that. Final Fantasy VI also introduced the advent of direct input techniques for certain characters, such as Sabin's Martial Arts, Setzer's slots, and Cyan's sword techniques. Again, innocent and harmless, right? Just another way to get the player more into the game.

Ha! If only we had known.

With each new installment in the series, Square repeatedly changes the recipe. They slowly evolve the time tested menu driven system to an action oriented one. From advanced direct input techniques in VII to the active boosting of Summons in VIII to the full on removal of turned based systems in XII... Square's intent is clear. Final Fantasy is slowly being morphed from a classic menu driven RPG to an action RPG setup. It's a cool and calculated move, one nefarious step at a time, but the end result is obvious. Here's the kicker. I'm okay with that. I have no problem with Final Fantasy becoming an action RPG- but for one thing....

Square already has an action RPG series. It's called Seiken Densetsu, and it's being pushed out. Square has its new action RPG, and it doesn't feel that it needs another, so Seiken Densetsu, known to many as Secret of Mana, is being rather unceremoniously shown the door. The loss of this series hurts me greatly.

Secret of Mana has always been a very rich and well formed universe in it's own right. It owes very little to the showboat Final Fantasy series, instead drawing upon a wealth of individualism to it's own unique feel. A Secret of Mana game is unmistakably a Secret of Mana game. From the moment you pick one up, you can tell the difference.

Or at least.. you used to.

You see, as Final Fantasy continued to encroach on Secret of Mana's territory, Square had to do something. In their infinite "wisdom", the course of action they chose was to morph Secret of Mana into some other genre, the way they had successfully morphed Final Fantasy. The problem is, they had no clue what genre to aim for. This has led to a series of aberrations that should make even the most novice to the series cry. It started off adapting the series to 3D and reworking it using the Havok system. That failed miserably. Gamers wanted their classic 2D action gaming with the lush and unforgettable enemies and environs. Imagine that. It also didn't help that the game mechanics were poorly designed and missing that signature Squaresoft polish. It comes as no real shock. Square was too busy turning Final Fantasy into Secret of Mana to be bothered making the next Secret of Mana... y'know... good.

Then came a series of blunders. A Dungeon Crawler, an RTS. Seemingly Square wanted Seiken Densetsu to become anything, just so long as it wasn't Seiken Densetsu. Then came the announcement. Due to poor sales, the Seiken Densetsu series would not be made again.

Due to poor sales?

It certainly is hard to imagine that fans of one of the most beautifully conceived action RPG series wouldn't be absolutely thrilled to see their beloved series being pimped out as everything this side of a real time dating sim. Why it's unbelievable to think that they wouldn't go right out and say, "Well, I loved the formula and though all I ask for is more of the same goodness I've been given, sure. I'll go out and buy a real time strategy version, even though I don't care for RTS and the entire feel of the series has been completely changed. Hell, it still has Rabites in it, and therefore it must be Secret of Mana-ish enough for me!"

I lament the shelving of any series before its time, but the cancellation of a masterpiece before it hit its stride is unforgivable. And the fact that its death comes at the hands of its own creators against the express wishes of the fandom is treasonous.

I raise a glass to you, Secret of Mana. I toast to you in loss.

No more Sprites.
No more Mana Spirits.
No more weapon upgrading and leveling.
No more Item Rings.
No more Rabites.
No more Chobin Hoods.
No more Ballooning.
No more Tomato Man.

I raise a glass to you, Seiken Densetsu, and recall memories bittersweet.

You deserved better than the end you received.   read

7:30 PM on 07.15.2009

As Written By: Legal Notice - The L Block Lawsuit

From: Romanofski, Abiju & Miffler Law Offices

To Whom It May Concern:

This letter is a writ of intent, declaring a pending lawsuit made by our client The 3, 2 Shape, more commonly known as "The 'L' Block", against your client, the game of Tetris. The basis of said lawsuit are as follows:

*Intentional misrepresentation of clients' usefulness in said game. Client is either too tall or too wide to be useful in the majority of situations when a T Block or S Block would suffice. Also as a matter of record, client is too short for majority of situations when an I Block would suffice. This alludes to intent to misrepresent the client as useful in the game.

*Willfully forcing the client onto the player in situations where there is no acceptable place to put the client, causing the player to be forced to miss lines.

*Forcing the client to retain its less useful form when it attempted to change its form to the Right Angle Block of two by two blocks attached at a hinge.

For these infringements against our client and for other similar allegations of defamation of character, our client is seeking reparations in the amount of 260,008,000 points, or roughly 500 points per line of Tetris botched by the average player. Also expected are the inclusion of fireworks, a Russian orchestra, and a rocket launch. The location and destination of the launch are unimportant. If you or your client wish to discuss anything regarding this lawsuit, contact our offices, not our client. Any attempt to contact our client will be viewed as menacing and will be added to the list of charges.

Good Day,
Howard H Miffler
Romanofski, Abiju & Miffler Law Offices   read

2:11 PM on 07.15.2009

As Written By: An Editorial, "Pale Shelter"

Not long ago I was participating in this thread about the definition of the term "Hardcore Gamer". A few days later I saw "We Gamin' " in Destructainment. The thread got me thinking about how, while everyone was debating the definition of "hardcore", everyone was also taking for granted the term "Gamer". Then, upon watching the video, I was hit by this line that got me thinking even more.

"We about to make video games officially cool."
How very Nineties of them.

The truth of the matter is that gaming is so prevalent in our society, in our culture now, that labeling yourself a "Gamer" as we, the enthusiast subculture views it, is as meaningless as labeling ourselves as human beings. It's practically a given. Everyone is a gamer. Not only that, but contrary to what "We Gamin' " would have us believe, gaming itself has become a widespread socially acceptable pastime. Gaming is cool. This leaves an interesting dichotomy.

We "Gamers" have always viewed video games as a type of schism that separates us from the general public as a whole. But in recent years, just like with anime and internet culture before us, the use and acceptability of video games has become mainstream, and that gap has closed. In a time where even grandma likes playing Peggle and Windows Solitaire (Sorry, no matter how hard you fight it, they are both video games), we find our social identity under attack from within. We are being accosted by the very thing that we sought as our refuge (thus the title of this editorial. Yeah. See what I did there?). Our response to this assault has been largely negative.

We attack casual gaming as an enemy. Do you see how they're ruining gaming? The deluge of simple and catchy titles with a pick up and play appeal is forever destroying gaming for us, the Faithful. We were here first, and we don't like it.

But casual games aren't targeted at us. They're targeted at casual gamers. They make money from their demographic. They develop to their demographic. Casual gaming hasn't ruined anything for us, it's nothing more than a natural splinter of the gaming behemoth as it gains size due to its increased social acceptance as a pastime. Nothing more than the natural business evolution. Besides, before we point the finger at casual gamers, perhaps we should think back. Perhaps we should recall that it was us who bred the seed that would become casual gaming. Back before the popularity of gaming it was us who made famous games such as Tetris and its many clones. We started this trend of pick up and play. We made it a hit. We made puzzle games all the rage. And then now for us to say that they are the death knell of gaming? That's nothing less than hypocritical. When it comes down to it, I'm willing to bet that the majority of us still play casual games. I know I do. How then do we justify vilifying what we, ourselves, engage in propagating?

In the end what happens to us is, as it has always been, up to us. Perhaps change is called for. A change in definition of a social structure. A change in acceptance at a macro-community level. Perhaps we will continue our trend of turning a blind eye and laying blame on an emerging community that has yet to truly find its voice. Regardless the approach we as Gamers choose, a shift has already begun in our community. A shift that requires more thought and more effort on our parts. A shift that means that our idea of social identity takes on new meaning and transcends the boundaries that were previously so clearly marked.

What happens next is up to you and I.

We, the Gamers.   read

1:46 PM on 07.15.2009

As Written By: Letters to the Editor, Part Two

Dear GuuZilla,
My name is Gato, I have metal joints.
Beat me up and earn 15 silver points.

Two Line Robot

Dear Two Line,
As much as I applaud your adherence to good manners, there was no need to introduce yourself by your given name. Anonymity is a right to all who write here. Let us now continue.
I can see very clearly that you are in a lot of pain. An invitation to others to beat you shows your masochistic tendencies but to actually entice others into doing so by offering monetary payment hints at something deeper, like a feeling of extreme self loathing and rock bottom self confidence. During all this you also profess your design of metal joints. You further entice others to engage in violence against you by proclaiming your toughness. My guess is that you harbor feelings of inadequacy brought on by the increased disinterest shown to you by your creator.
Don't trip into this never ending pitfall of loathing and spite. It only leads to rebellion and inevitable defeat by a more powerful robot that will scrap you and then copy your powers. You need to shift your way of thinking. Disinterest is not the same thing as abandonment. If you perform the job you were created for then this is an act of independence. Your creator is showing you that they trust you to do what you do without the need of their further interference. Consider that. Use those silver points for something good. Go out, see the world. Have fun. You deserve it. You know why? Because after the countless beatings you have undoubtedly taken you're still here, still fully functional, and still ready to take on the world. God Bless.

Dear GuuZilla,
I am a frog. While most frogs are content with simply living life in their pond and eating insects, I find myself inextricably drawn to crossing dangerous traffic heavy roads and rivers infested with creatures that all want to kill me. There's not even anything rewarding at the end of my journey. Just the uncontrollable urge to do it all over again across a faster and more perilous road. What's wrong with me?


Dear Mazehopper,
There is nothing wrong with being different than your fellow frogs. My concern is with this preoccupation with danger. Obviously, as you have stated yourself, the goal is not the reward for you. The journey is. This is not all that uncommon. Life in a pond is rather uneventful and many people crave excitement and adventure. You must, however, be aware of the risks. While I can't tell you not to risk your life on these excursions, I can advise you that there are other ways to challenge yourself and surmount adversity other than flinging yourself headlong down deathtrap freeway. Make goals for yourself. Set records. Challenge yourself to set the record for highest or longest jump. Fastest swimmer. Most bugs eaten in a day. If that isn't enough and you find that life on the edge is the only way to go, then go with something small. Something in which you have a bit more control over. Jumping into a river filled with large predators is a poor choice. Find a pond with bigger frogs or even some toads and take on the locals for dominance. Cross a driveway for a thrill instead of a freeway. The danger still exists, but it's less likely. Moderation in all things, Mazehopper.

Dear GuuZilla,
I am a tadpole who is constantly being picked on by my peers. I know that I am adopted, and that Gramps says that I'm different, but the constant insults are just too much for me to bear. Just because I'm white and fluffy and I float and it rains when I'm upset is no reason for them to bully me for being different. Enclosed, Gramps has attached a photo of me. Please tell me what to do.

Marshed Mallow

Dear Marshed,
I do believe I have figured out why your peers find you so hard to accept as a fellow tadpole.

YOU. ARE. NOT. A. TADPOLE! You are a cloud.

Look in a mirror. If that does not convince you, seek serious psychiatric help.
There is no reason that you cannot live peacefully with the tadpoles and other denizens of your pondly home, but so long as you perpetuate living in this delusion you've created you will continue to be the target of ridicule. Don't try to be something you are not.   read

2:47 PM on 07.08.2009

As Written By: Letters to the Editor, Part One

Dear GuuZilla,
I am a female bounty hunter of some renown. In my beginning days I largely played down my femininity due to a fear that sexism would prevent me from being taken seriously. Also, when fighting off the most powerful beasts in the universe, having power armor helps and it isn't like they make ancient relic driven powered suits in his and hers designs. In any case, recently I've felt a need to break the mold as it were and show the real me. As a result, I now find galleries online of caricatures of myself in all kinds of compromising positions, often with exaggerated "assets". While I'm a bit put off but these things the real concern is whether or not I have compromised my status as a serious hunter. What do you think? What should I do?

-Chosen of Chozo

Dear Chosen,
Respect in the industry is a difficult and fragile thing to achieve, and I can truly understand your concern. I myself have been the focal point of infatuation before and as flattering as it can be, it also runs the risk of being counterproductive. That said, I think that as it is now, you are safe in your reputation. Being an object of infatuation, and thus fantasy, is simply something a public figure such as yourself will have to deal with. People see sex in almost everything, and a strong and beautiful woman, especially one sporting a space suit of skin tight spandex, is going to be an easy target. The simple fact is that no matter what, you have already established yourself as a person who can get the job done. That speaks a lot to a professional talent. Someone with a real job will want real results, and you've proven that you can do that. A bunch of lewd pictures doesn't change that and if some space pirates get distracted because they're staring at your jubblies, what the hell. Easier to pick off.

Dear GuuZilla,
Recently my traveling companions and I have taken on a new addition to our party. He is a medieval frog with crazy mad swordsman skills. The problem is that he happens to be infatuated with one of my ancestors, who was a young woman about my age in the time period he comes from. Apparently, I resemble this ancestor quite strongly and he keeps giving me furtive glances when he thinks I'm not looking. I'm a little concerned and frankly I'm a bit worried to be alone with him. What should I do?

-Ice Princess

Dear Princess,
Caution is advisable, especially when dealing with animals, natural or transmuted by magic. Try talking to your party leader, unless he's a silent protagonist type. In that case you might as well be talking to a wall. I do suggest trying to switch out of the active party when he's in it and into the active party when he's not. As a frog, his natural magical element is likely water, and by guesswork from your signature, yours is ice. Two similar magical affinities are rarely called for in one party, so you should have no problem recommending a replacement. Perhaps a robot or a cavewoman. On the occasions when you do have to work together, keep it professional and courteous. If he crosses a line, call him on it. Point out to him that you are not the same as your ancestor and you do not appreciate his forwardness. Open a dialogue with him. Get him to understand how you are different than her and if you can get him talking you may even bring about in conversation a distracting subject for later use. A swordsman as good as you claim he is must have at least one slain ally weighing heavy on his conscience.   read

1:18 PM on 07.07.2009

As Written By: From Peach, A Love Letter

My Dearest,
Last week was fantastic. Once more, you have swept me off my feet. Our romance, though secret, blossoms, and I long await your inevitable return. Days in the castle are long and dull, gray in comparison to being held near to you, my darling. I wait upon baited breath to catch glimpses of you, to cross your path during my outings at tennis matches and go kart races.
My love for you grows, my sweetest, larger and faster than the effect even mushrooms can bring. It is a chain that connects us, as invulnerable as the star and as determined as a Bullet Bill. Your love is the flower that ignites my heart, a koopa shell pounce that stops me in my tracks.
When I think of you, my flag is raised and there are fireworks in my soul, no matter the time. My heart pounds like the Hammer Brothers, and I feel that my time is running out with each second that passes. I long to run to you, there is no going back. I feel that as I run to you, the world behind me just disappears.
My sweet, I can bear this no more. Come for me, take me from this place. Let's flee this land and travel the world as we have done before. I wait for you.

Yours ever and always,
Princess Toadstool

P.S. - I worry that Mario is catching on to our secret rendezvous. My dear toadstool friends have agreed once more to delay him, but I worry every time I see him hit you with a fireball or send you landing on your spiky back. Please, my dear. Be cautious.   read

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