Welcome to the Gaming Sanctuary

Q&A: Some Questions About Gaming Sanctuary


Vtd

Welcome to our long and savory question and answer session! For those of you who don't know me, I'm Vyse the determined and I am a member of the Super NES message board forums on GameFAQs. I've been a hardcore gamer for about as long as I can remember. I guess it's an age old mystery to some as to just how old I am. Well, I'm much younger than one might suspect. *drum roll starts* I was born July 9th, 1986 and technically hail from St. Thomas, one of the Virgin Isles, though I lived the majority of my life in the big apple, New York. I'm currently living in Virginia and I've been here for about 5 years now. I was a precocious youth, and I guess I have to contribute this largely due to being sheltered as a kid, though it amazingly hasn't affected my social graces much. I'm quite versatile actually. Sorry about the picture above...It's the only real picture I have right now.

I played videogames all the time when I was little...I mean practically ALL the time, so I'm more of a gaming prodigy in a sense. I mastered challenging games at a young age and would take the quarters of people two or three times my age at the arcades and beat the game in one quarter! I guess being exposed to games so much has made me very passionate (dare I say obsessed) about games, but it's all good. Truth be told, I'm a jack of all trades...somewhat of a perfectionist. I strive to be good at all that I do. I'm a lyricist, vocalist, and a writer...I write very well when I care to proofread, but hey, if I ain't getting paid, I don't care about minute details...this is a little different because it's something I'm passionate about. Also, I'm physically fit (believe heavily in fitness) and I'm also a designer and webmaster. I also do art (hand-drawn), though I mainly hosted a couple of Bel's work and have edited some things at the moment. I have an appreciation for the fine arts as well as mature intellectual conversation. All in all, I'm the kind of person that doesn't like to stop an activity once my mind is focused on it. I like to be detail orientated. When something new catches my eye due to my natural born curiosity, I cast the old stuff to the side. I am the main webmaster and creator of this site and I do all sorts of things from complete site-wide maintanance, reviews, image capturing and editing, audio editing (such as cutting sound, creating loops, fade In/Out, etc), movie ripping and uploading, learning new code for further site development, video editing, etc, etc...OK! Question time!



Vyse Pic Q: "When did you start gaming originally Vyse?"

A: Ever since I was about two years old. I remember playing Altered Beast and Alex Kidd for the Sega Genesis. The first game I had ever laid eyes on was Tetris for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES. Thank god for abbreviations and acronyms!).



Vyse Pic Q: "What made you start collecting?"

A: When I was about 12 years old, I liked games, but I got discouraged because I could never find all the "popular" games, and I was thinking of just selling the games I've gained over the years (which was about 300 at the time, give or take). In a strange turn of events, I found a kid in my middle school who had a strange Nintendo pirate cart (pardon the pun) called 52 games, and I was really interested because I didn't really have any NES games in which to speak of. Well anyway, I asked him if he wanted to trade, but he only wanted "Legend of Legaia" (A Playstation game I didn't have at the time) or a "really sweet NES game". I didn't know WHAT to give him, so I let him borrow Dynowarz, and he let me borrow 52 games in return. I loved every minute of it and when it came time for me to return it, I grew very sad because I had to give it back. When we met each other again, I couldn't believe what he told me (I still can't believe it). He said that he loved Dynowarz so much that he'd give me anything for it. Of course, I let him keep it, and I guess you could say my morale got a serious boost. Really long story short, I've been collecting more seriously ever since.



Vyse Pic Q: "How did you get such a collection?"

A: Pawnshops, Flea Markets, Yard sales, you name it, and I've been there or done that...maybe. Many people have many bad experiences with secondhand shops, but trust me, they are the way to go if you want a large collection in a relatively short timespan and it's moderately inexpensive if you play your cards right. You have to do your homework, and be at the right place at the right time. Thankfully, I'm blessed to have a bro who's just as knowledgable about games as me (though he doesn't really play them much anymore) and helps me with some of my purchases. Next, you need a good attitude. Some may not agree, but proper etiquette and good people skills go a long way in establishing good connections. The most important rule of all however, is to have patience. Rome wasn't built in a day, and your collection shouldn't be either. Of course, you can buy a number of game lots off of sites like eBay, but I feel that can greatly diminish the fun of collecting. Over 93% of my game collection comes from what many of us gamers and collectors call "the wild".



Vyse Pic Q: "Are you rich!? Where do you get the money for all this?"

A: A lot of people have the misconception that because someone may own a lot (particularly of one particular thing), that they are rich. I'll tell you right now that I'm not rich (at least not at the moment). I just know how to spend my money. While most kids my age were/are buying the fanciest clothes and material possessions, I spent my savings on games. Now I'm older and I work for what I want. Real simple right? I do try to have SOME good dress clothes though. I'm not a complete stiff. As for this site, it cost next to nothing to host it. :)



Vyse Pic Q: "What made you FINALLY make your own site?"

A: Inspiration from fellow gamers and peers plays a big part in my decision, but I've also grown rusty in my programming abilities. Consider this as a means to express myself, as well as a means to make my ridiculous College Debt and Associates Degree get put to some practical use. Of course, I wouldn't have gotten this far without help from my friends and feedback from "readers like you"! Seriously, I've learned a lot over the years, and people have helped me nearly every step of the way, no matter how small the deed. I'm just giving a little back to the community folks.



Vyse Pic Q: "How did you get your name?"

A: Well, it's not overly creative, but I'm named after the Blue Rouge, Vyse, from the hit Dreamcast game, "Skies of Arcadia". I named myself after him because he has a lot of the same traits I do. He's adventurous, curious, a hard worker, and charismatic. I like him more because he's tough, but he doesn't try too hard to come off as being macho. I like a bad-*** character here and there, but it's also nice to see more laid back characters like Vyse, and I'm a REALLY laid back SOB. In the game Skies of Arcadia, the character Vyse can receive many different titles (like Vyse the Determined), but the phrase "determined" probably suits me best. I do what I can, and I work hard, but I'm not always a miracle worker, um kay?



Vyse Pic Q: "Do you know how to speak or read Japanese?"

A: I have partial knowledge of the language. Back when I went to high school, I took a course in Japanese and loved it. Since then, I've read books, bought books and have done independent studies. I know enough to gain a basic or greater understanding of the Japanese games I like to play. I learn a little more each time I sit down and play them. I originally only knew Hiragana and Katakana, but now I know some of the Kanji characters by memory. It's one of the toughest languages to learn, but I feel it will ultimately be worth it in the long haul.



Vyse Pic Q: "Why did you call the site "The Gaming Sanctuary" and how'd you get dibs on such a cool domain name?"

A: Ha ha ha! Well, I can at least answer the first part of this question with certainty. Me and Bel Cain (who was merely an observer offering constructive criticism at the time) were going to attempt to name the site "The Game Haven", but it turns out that it brought up too many results in a search engine and the name was already taken. We wanted a name that showed just how significant gaming was in our lives and that really reflected how we felt about video games. We kept twiddling our thumbs around the idea that we should make a place that was judgmental, but also fair and we wanted to play all kinds of games and spread all kinds of details. We feel that it's important to have an opinion, but we want to have a good foundation for those reasons so that we can say every game was given a fair chance. We can't readily say that people will agree with everything we say, but acknowledge that we at least tried to look at the positive and negatives of every game. I think we achieved that goal when we came up with Gaming Sanctuary, a place that we feel really puts gaming up on a pedestal, a place we feel really gives value to the ideology of a gamer, and a place where games can be worshipped (obviously in a very different way than religious worship). This is a place where gaming takes the most precedence, and that's why we called it "The Gaming Sanctuary".

It should be noted that we've had numerous ideas that predated Gaming Sanctuary...let me tell you the long and awesome story of how this site came to be. Back in late 1999, I personally made three attempts to get my name out there and Bel attempted at least once from my knowledge. Back then, it was a relatively petty concept. I wanted to host my game collection and jot down small anecdotes about the games I played on the web. Back then, free hosting was an intimidating beast, and I couldn't get a lot of the service providers to work out, so I scrapped the idea. I then took what I knew to GameFAQs in late 2002, but I was what I'd call a relatively "undefined" or untested gamer. I would state things that would send off mixed vibes, even if it was merely speculations I may have had at the time, but I quickly became more knowledgable over time. I then chatted regularly for a time on the Lagoon board at GameFAQs where I met a guy by the name of DarkJediKnight (who last went by the name of Mossman) who had an up and running geocities page that looked a lot like the page I wanted to make. I tried making a site for the second time, but there was absolutely no organization. I didn't have any documents, a lot of my notes were scrambled and all I could rely on was what I kept stored in my head, so I eventually scrapped the idea again.

It was around mid 2003 that Bel said "let's make a log of all the games we have", so we would regularly update the list and jot down occassional notes we might have referrenced online. Things were going pretty good, but we lost access to our computer and have remained absent from GFAQs for about two years. When I had came back, most of the peeps we came to know actually remembered who I was, telling me that I had a certain power to my words. It was around 2006 that I decided to start writing articles to GFAQs. The problem with a lot of those articles is that they were informative, but they were unrefined. After siting down for a while and glossing over those articles, I realised this truth. I thought to myself "Is this really the best I can do?". "Is this really the height of my ability?". After such consideration, I decided that being good would never be good enough. No matter how good I got, I would always set the bar higher. Around late 2006, someone proposed the idea for a fourth time: "Vyse, you should house that gaming encyclopedia in your head and make a website". Having tried twice back in 1999 and another time after meeting DarkJediKnight, I wondered if I really had what it took to make a website. I was obviously older and wiser, but did I have the knack for it?

I decided to start learning the fundamentals of web design when I went to College, instead of going all the way to learn game design. I decided against game design because games are advancing so quickly, every month I was in College, it seemed like there was some new technological achievement that had been discovered and as a guy who studied games and didn't necessarily know how to make them (unless you count minor sprite designing) I figured something out...I figured out that by the time I finished College, there would be no way in hell my present knowledge at my time of graduation would help me in any way towards the future of game design, and that's putting it mildly. This was a time when the teachers couldn't handle designing 1% of Gears of War, which was a game they strived to create...so it was an uphill battle from day one, no offense to my proctors and peers of course. It's funny because I've essentially become the guy the game developers resent; A critic, the guy who sways peoples' judgment and potentially affects a companies' potential sales. Aaaaannnnyway, I studied web design, multimedia design and 3D modeling to help give me some powerful assets to enter the world wide web...now if only I had some good software like Maya and the like, I could probably raise some eyebrows, lol.

So...after graduating in late 2006, I did more independent studying about web design and set up the basic idea for Gaming Sanctuary. I first had to make sure the domain name wasn't taken. Surprisingly, it wasn't. We then looked around for a free host to help get our ideas out into the open. We eventually chose the folks people love to hate, Yahoo-Geocities and "Gaming Sanctuary" was born on February 27th, 2007. If you find the old Geocities extension, it will redirect you to the current site. While the site started out simple, the site received warm reception, but we knew we couldn't keep it the way it was. The site has since seen upgrade after upgrade from minor to major after "April 2nd, 2007" and we implement more code along the way. We like to say that this is the tip of the iceberg for Gaming Sanctuary.

- Q & A About Bel Cain -

Bel Cain The Eternal

Greetings everyone. I have many names: RJW, Twinz/Twin, Ryouma, and many other monikers I've been tagged with throughout the years either by friends and colleagues or by birthrite. For the purpose of this site, I go by Bel Cain The Eternal (Bel Cain, BCTE, Bel or B). Most people wouldn't picture me as a hardcore gamer because I've never presented myself as one but truth be told, my knowledge of games even rivals that of my brother, Vtd. I'm typically known as the "quiet overseer", one who keeps primarily to himself not out of fear or anxiety but out of necessity. I spend more time analyzing things than I do holding conversations and take my time making decisions, so I would like to think I'm a good judge of character. Regardless, my interests are playing video games, watching the occassional movie and anime (though I won't be going to any conventions), working (can be somewhat of a workaholic), drawing, acting goofy and listening/writing music. I'm a level-headed young man with a simple dream: To get out of debt and live life. Things like fame or riches mean nothing to me so long as I'm full on life. Don't get me wrong though...I don't want to live in poverty if I can avoid it.

As some are already aware, I'm Vtd's twin, so we are the same age (though for those who are curious, he's slightly taller and I'm a few minutes older). For what it's worth, I'm more artistically inclined than Vyse (*shhh*) when it comes to things like drawing and design, though I'm not saying I'm the next Picaso or Van Gough. Together, the two of us make a pretty good team and have developed quite a bit of versatility. What's that saying? "United they stand, divided they fall"? Something like that...I don't pretend to know everything. Anyway, I should probably put down some of the questions that are typically asked of me.



BCTE Q: "I've heard numerous things about you, but what role do you play on Gaming Sanctuary?"

A: What kind of question is that? Heh, I'm just kidding. I write a few articles for the site here and there but I probably emphasize more on the design elements of the site: Making banners and logos, suggesting new elements that should be implemented for user convienience, setting certain guidelines, occassionally fixing the coding of the html documents, things of that nature. I haven't really done anything that pushes the envelope since this site is built on simplicity, but I think this site offers a few options in comparison to some fan sites while continually trying to innovate and bring new ideas to the gaming forefront. Granted, "idea" and "new" in this day and age is bound to lead to debates and people waving red flags with the words "Pompous Contradiction" stamped on it, but that's one potential symptom of being overly existential; You become too judgemental. Quite frankly, I have more important things to do with my time than hang around debating with people over trivial matters. Bring me some discussion like how we can actually change the world for the better or something that doesn't have to do with constant bickering for example and then I'll talk. Otherwise, I'm going about my business, simple as that.



BCTE Q: "What's your take on video games?"

A: I feel my outlook on video games is particularly different from my brother and that helps establish a different viewpoint on Gaming Sanctuary. If you didn't know any better, you'd swear I wasn't a real gamer at times...but that's just what I want you to think *wink*. I believe it's important to have at least two voices that can agree or disagree on certain matters at times because it gives a little more feedback and insight on things, not to mention help break repetitious trends. Have you ever read hundreds of works from the same author? There is no doubt that it grows old eventually, so it's refreshing for some to know that not everything is done by the same guy. There are lots of great teams out there like "Siskel & Ebert", "Don & Mike", "Velma & Louis"...you get the drill. We may one day be the team known as "Vyse & Bel", the guys who take video games seriously and yet don't take them seriously at all.



BCTE Q: "Do you ever feel overshadowed by your bro?"

A: Not at all, for the simple fact that I know what I'm capable of. To be honest, I'd rather not be on the receiving end of this matter. Not to play the game of stereotypes but I know all too well how a lot of people in our field are...



BCTE Q: "How come you or Vtd don't promote your forum more?"

A: We don't promote the forum much because we want the site to be up to speed. There are many things we've yet to implement and while people have praised the site for having some sort of professionalism from day one, we don't feel the site is at the point where we should start going and recruiting members and assigning them certain tasks. As of now, the members we do have are a couple of guys we know in V.A. including the esteemed OreoCookie1169 from Crunchyroll, a couple of devoted GameFAQs members and a few Youtube enthusiasts who liked what they saw. We have a few scouters who aid us in locating hard to find games for our site related means. Due to what most call "our lofty ambitions" to have cover scans and manual illustrations for all kinds of games, it's quite the investment that most aren't willing to make but we are adamant in getting these things. There is little doubt that people will take these things for granted in the future, but that is something to be expected. All I can say is don't worry, because you haven't seen anything we truly have in store yet. Movies, trivia, anime, you name it and we've probably already taken it into consideration. When we really get caught up, we'll probably advertise the site and forum more. Slow but steady wins the race and quality over quantity as some say.



BCTE Q: "Who would win in a fight, you or your brother?"

A: Ha ha ha, that's a good question and one that everyone asks. I'll let you know if we ever get into one that doesn't end in a draw. We typically spar to test our strength, which often stuns people since they don't expect it. We're not quite what you'd call "obviously strong", or in other words, looks can be deceiving.



BCTE Q: "Why did you crop your image?"

A: Just because? If you really want to see a picture of my mug, I have one on the forum.



BCTE Q: "What's your favorite food?"

A: Just about anything that's edible. Beggars can't be choosers you know.



- Q & A: About The Site -

Simple GS Banner

Vyse Pic Q: "What is the purpose of your site?"

A: The goal of this site hasn't changed from the day it launched. I want to cover just about anything game related for just about anything. I want to shine light where there is darkness. Of course, I'll talk about just about everything, if technology allows me to do so. This site has a definitive focus on lesser known games, primarily Japanese titles. As many are aware, many Japanese games have never been released in the United States or many regions of the world other than Japan, which is THE gaming capital of the universe and where the majority of video games come from. As such, to guys like me and my brother and many who wish to know what gaming truly has to offer, Japan is a gold mine of untapped potential. So many games are released there that many of them are even shafted in their own country! However, we wish to go above and beyond what most average sites do, with all due respect. We won't halt our progress if a game is in Japanese. We will play it, beat it, and translate what we need to know if that's what it takes! We will take notes, keep revising articles even if they don't need revisions, and keep learning and evolving, adding to our repretoire of skill sets. We achieved our level of versatility by taking action, not watching the clouds go by and waiting for everyone to hand us things on a silver platter! We will fight back!! This is what Gaming Sanctuary is all about!!!



Vyse Pic Q: "Cool site layout, but what's with the animated .gifs?"

A: The focus of the site is to talk about games of all shapes and sizes. The animated .gifs represent the sheer randomness of the site as well as the gaming world. You may never know where some characters come from! Of course, some .gifs are so classic that they just take you back to Retroville, even if you know who or what they represent. We understand that some people would rather not see things moving around while they read (hence the primary draw of this site, the articles, are animation free), but the general consensus is that people feel that it gives the site a great throwback look to the days of gaming, from games Pre-Atari to current. We have spread the .gifs around pages and thinned their numbers to address many peoples' concerns, but it goes without saying (even though I'm saying it) that you can't please everyone. Such is a sad fact of life.



Vyse Pic Q: "The site is fantastic Vyse. Do you intend on uploading game footage and .wavs/mp3/OSTs like some other sites?"

A: Originally, the idea of all this seemed like an impossibility, but thanks to continued efforts, a good deal from a good friend, Bel Cain pouring out his pockets to this cause and me studying new things, GS can do a lot more than it could a year ago. I wouldn't have taken this gesture too seriously, but now we've dived right into this process. As much obscure stuff as we are trying to gather, things will be a little slow without other skilled hands on deck, but I can live with that for the time being. We have begun to upload videos and a little game footage on our Youtube Channel. Why Youtube? While we could host our videos on our site at a greater resolution, the biggest problem is that videos take up a lot of resources, so we store them on YT, since it is much more convenient. As for MP3s and OSTs, we have begun gathering our own MP3s and audio samples. However, OSTs are out of the question. We want people to be interested in buying games and perhaps supporting game developers more. Ever wonder why the cool underdogs of gaming go under or why we can't get more quirky games? We are all to blame. If we can only rectify that issue in some way and reach out to at least one person (which we have), then I can remain a proud man. We are not rich and we definitely appreciate emulation, but I will never use my financial situations to justify not buying original products. Doing so will only work against our favorite developers, not work with them. Besides, legitimate copies of games can actually be worth something sometimes, in addition to providing images and information that emulation alone can't always provide.

Our current YT account (for gaming) is here:
http://www.youtube.com/user/Vysethedetermined2



Vyse Pic Q: "What is your requirements for reviews? Some seem different from others."

A: When the site was in the experimentation phase, I had to try different methods for screen capturing. Originally, we didn't really have any other option besides emulation for capturing good screens. However, things have shifted over into more favorable grounds. We now have a digital camera, numerous web tools and other things to help with the site. Need a scan for an obscure game? Want to see some Watara Supervision carts? Want to see more pics of our highly (un)sophisticated mugs? We have the camera for that, and with obscure gamers trying to cover strange games, interest is growing, but there is still a lack of people owning original products, so demand for things like quality scans and illustrations is high. Instead of using what's on the net, we avoid that as much as humanly possible, as it usually consist of a primary source with a good quality image, then everyone taking that image and consistently converting it. In other words, it's a cycle and the images you find on the net get progressively worse in quality. We do our own scans so that the quality is good the first time around, and we don't care too much if others use them so long as you don't steal our bandwidth, but people know where to go if they want good scans *wink*. We can catch good screenshots for numerous platforms and even record videos with our more powerful computers. Things are a lot better than they were a year ago, so we're going back and increasing our standards.

As for the written material, there are no real requirements...so long as graphics, sound, and gameplay are covered in some fashion. Otherwise, I write until I feel like stopping. Some reviews I have gone back and expanded the content. The general feedback that I have gotten favor shorter articles over full blown articles. The reasoning for this is that a few fairly big paragraphs can be every bit as informative (if not, more so) than an entire article, especially if the article comes off as being redundant. Another aspect of this is that many people don't wish to be spoiled too much. Why ruin it for them? Also, it's just faster for everyone...I know what it's like to be a dial up guy. However, we have our preferences too...we like fairly lengthy passages filled with witty anecdotes and laugh-out-loud humor, and apperently other people do (such as fans of our Playstation and Sega Saturn articles). We also learned a thing or two from great magazine writers of the past and present, and we incorporate some of those things in our captions and articles. The solution we've come up with is to provide those who would rather not read a potentially golden and long-winded article with quick game overviews. It's generally a very condensed version of our articles with a few pictures, a small list of potential pros and cons, a small summary, no extra screenshots, and no tricks, just the way some people like it. While it's almost twice the work on our behalf, we feel that it is a great idea for the time being.

My reviews contain information based on publisher and developer on said game. For instance, I will tell you about Biox. I will state that Biox made Samurai Kid as well as Daikuno Gensan. The basic reasoning behind this is that if you like what Biox has made (Samurai Kid), you may want to know other games from the same people. All in all, I've heard good things about the site. Of course, more work needs to be done! I never tire of sweet gaming victory!



Vyse Pic Q: "I notice that you don't give ratings to the games in your articles. What gives?"

A: Yes, that's one element of this site that helps it distinguish itself from some other sites out there and it's done for a number of reasons. I'll just say that there are two primary reasons we don't do it. The first primary reason is that you, the reader, know what you like and what you don't like. If you see a game that gets a bad rap, you'll probably play it anyway just to join the club or confirm any suspicions you might have. Likewise, most people read reviews for the information, not for the numerical value that may come somewhere between the beginning and/or the end of the article. If that were the case, all the reviews everywhere should be one or two sentence taglines accompanied by a number that determines how you feel about the game. Why even write an article? Our articles encourage people to focus primarily on the words and to draw their own conclusion based on our praise or disdain of a game and your own personal preference. If you're really in a hurry, you can skim our quick game overviews.

The second primary reason is that it takes a lot of stress out of the whole "numbers game" associated with scored articles. One of the toughest parts about writing an article in that fashion isn't coming up with the words or formulating clever punchlines and forming references people won't always understand, it's the fear that you'll say something about a game and give a rating that doesn't quite match with what you say. If you aren't a big article writer, then it's probably no skin off your nose, but it can almost be compared to psycological warfare if you're a big time review critic. Trust me, I wouldn't call myself a "big-time" critic, but I've been in their shoes plenty of times. The idea is that it's supposed to be a snapshot of how you feel at that time, but there are a number of pitfalls associated with that theory and it takes a really talented individual to do it and not get caught up in the whole wash of comparisons. You know what I'm talking about...the "I wonder if this game should score higher than that game" argument. For lack of a better answer, I'll just say that I'm not that talented. While our articles can be highly opinionated, that's all that they are, opinions. In reference to the words of the talented Shigeru Miyamoto, you accept them graciously, even though they are useless. They help you form decisions, but they ultimately don't prevent you from doing what you want to do. Besides, this format of ours also gives us a little more leeway when it comes to revising our articles.



Vyse Pic Q: "I love your General Gaming Interests section! What other kinds of stuff might you add?"

A: I am thinking of putting site related banners in there, maybe some site wallpapers, and more. I also flipped a coin...heads said I would make custom animated .gifs, tails said I wouldn't. While it landed on tails, I am still heavily considering it, simply because I would like a 2-D Vyse .gif avatar, and maybe a couple for obscure games like Tadaima, Suguro Quest, Twinkle Tale, etc. I hear that it's pretty easy, so I can't fathom why I wouldn't do something that is said to be easy. I am very fond of the Jungle Wars 2 comic myself. While I have no intention of doing a review on that particular game yet, the comic was hilarious and I had to scan it ASAP.



Vyse Pic Q: "Vyse, you and Bel seem to know a fair deal about Japanese games, even the ones that aren't fan-translated, but you post Japanese screens? Why do you do this, even when you know about translated ROMs and ISOs?"

A: I might be a Blue Rogue and Bel may be whatever he feels like being at any given time, but we have certain principles we abide by. I personally think a gamer is foolish if they can't see or appreciate all that the emulation community has provided for gamers. However, I strictly believe in only showing games on this site in their original state. It's not because I'm concerned by any repercussions that could result from displaying ROM-specific images, but I believe that if a game wasn't made that way, then I refuse to show it here. I constantly get mail from people asking where they can buy English copies of games like Star Ocean (for Super Famicom), Gley Lancer (A Megadrive Shooter), and a WHOLE SLEW of other games. They are unsurprisingly disappointed when I tell them that those games weren't originally made that way. While some individuals have special means of producing "those" versions of games (and that's their business), I won't fuel the rampant hysteria that is associated with the misconception behind a fan-translation. The games you see here are games that were released in that fashion or are one of several versions of a game. I won't hunt down translators swearing, begging and pleading with them to translate a game I want to play right this very minute. They've got things they need to do too, and I respect that. I won't scoff at their efforts, but at the same time, I have things regarding the Japanese gaming scene that I want to do and I'm not waiting for anyone to get those things done. I think it's a part of human decency, if this even makes sense. If you want to know about a Japanese game here, you'll have to consult one of our guides our drop us an email.



Vyse Pic Q: "Can we make contributions or talk turkey here?"

A: I currently have a number of SNES impressions from other members on GameFAQs. I take them, and add my own two cents while I also value their opinion. At this time, the only contributions I can take are game images. You can learn more on the forums...speaking of forums, if you wish to speak with me, I have activated a proboard for cool gaming conversation. While it LOOKS dead, I check on it from time to time. The site is still new, so I don't expect much traffic there right now. Feel free to sign up. There are no gimmicks, no hidden fees (it's free), and it's a good way to bring interactivity to the site. I am still always accepting artwork in the .jpg, .gif, and now, the .png format. It doesn't have to be game related, though it would help if it was.

While I can draw, I haven't had time to draw anything serious for the site. Try to keep the file size small, but if not, I will try to find ways to compress it. Actually, I would prefer if you send me images that aren't compressed, so long as the attachment doesn't exceed 10MB. Also, I should note that the art should be original in some way, even if it is a reproduction of existing art. Don't just scan up a chick or guy from a mag and send it in as yours. As usual, send contributions to my email address at worldofgaming@yahoo.com and I will take a gander at everything. Make sure that the subject is something like "Gaming Sanctuary Question" or "Question for Vyse" OR "Question for Bel Cain". I get lots of friendly email, but I do get a lot of spam also. This will help me sort out the spam crap from friends and such. If there is anyway we can help, we'll let you know!



Vyse Pic Q: "Which direction do your images go?"

A: For those who don't know, they go from left to right. Of course, depending on your browser, they may also go from top to bottom.



BCTE Q: "How do you discuss your Japanese games?"

A: When we discuss Japanese games, we typically give general translations, though we also emphasize some Japanese words with their intended literal meaning if it's particularly important to what we want to say in an article. Generally speaking, all of the Japanese text on this site undergoes Romanization.



BCTE Q: "Why do you care about complete games and the like so much?"

A: It's all about "documentation". We aren't concerned about having really pristine games or anything like that, hence one of the reasons we don't call ourselves major collectors. We just need complete games in decent shape for the manuals and other things that may come with a game, which is why emulation alone doesn't always help us. In some cases, the miscellaneous goods and documents that come with games are just as important as the game itself when putting together a good article on this site. Then there's the whole scanning mission on the site. We get cool and/or obscure scans from time to time from various people over the net that really come in handy too!



BCTE Q: "Out of curiosity, can you make a guide for important game-related keywords, phrases, and GS-related acronyms? Also, can we get those neat overviews linked outside of articles as well?"

A: We were already working on making numerous shortcuts for the overviews, credits, text-based FAQs and other things, but we haven't considered making a guide of commonly used phrases and acronyms...until now. We will make a comprehensive legend of popular phrases and do some R&D on the matter ASAP. Here are some of the things to look out for on this site:

GS: Gaming Sanctuary
Q: Quick (Game Overviews)
C: Credits
Ch: Codes / Cheats
RPG: Roleplaying Game
SRPG: Strategy Roleplaying Game
TRPG Tactical Roleplaying Game or Table-Talk RPG



- Q & A About Adult Content -

Not For Minors

Vyse Pic Q: "What's your stance on adult content?"

A: Adult content on this site is something we've been thinking about on and off for a long time now. We don't mind adult content, but we're being very cautious right now about how much of it we introduce, hence the unwillingness to write a whole slew of adult articles. There is an undeniable market for those kinds of games and we'd like to talk about them, but a certain degree of moderation is in order. In this site's case, it's modified images and dialogue and the basic guidelines that we've set for minors who click the articles.



Vyse Pic Q: "If the images and text are edited to such an extent, then what's the big deal?"

A: The big deal here is that a fair portion of our audience consists of minors. We've been thinking about removing adult articles from this site and making a small site for them seperate from this one. We think censorship is a very lame but very necessary part of life...but don't misunderstand us; we're not saints. The fact of the matter (and let's be real here) is that this is the Internet; a place where people can get nearly whatever they want when they want it regardless if they are young or old. We do our part to limit "strange" behavior on our site, but that doesn't mean that people won't find the same exact things that are on this site elsewhere, with less censorship and the like. If we do move the adult articles, the upside for the heterosexuals, bisexuals, or whatever your sexual orientation may be, is that there will likely be less censorship too. Some of the games we have scream "strong sexual content" right on the front of the box (those are the games we stash far away from nosey nephews), so it's going to become unavoidable at some point.



- Q & A About GS Contact Information -

Contact Info

Vyse Pic Q: "Do you have a place where I can contact you or Bel Cain The Eternal?"

A: We sure do. We've had contact information around for a long time now. More and more people have been asking about it until we felt like we had to make it more visible. It's not your fault though...we haven't applied this information very well in the past.

I hang out at numerous places. You can find me at GameFAQs (most commonly on the SNES boards), catch me chillin from time to time on the Icy Forums, pretend to see me lurking on our own GS Forum, and see me ocassionally on Romhacking.net. I also lurk around on HG101 every now and then. I believe Bel made it clear that while he visits numerous sites, he only lurks on our forum because this site is his main priority. If you want to email us, you can send your questions and comments to our address at worldofgaming@yahoo.com - That is our main email for the site right now, since most of our other emails are for business related matters.



Vyse Pic Q: "What can we contact you about?"

A: You can ask us almost anything within the realm of reason, but we probably won't even answer you unless the subject is something specific regarding Vyse, Bel, Gaming Sanctuary, or something specific along those lines (or unless we know you). Otherwise, we aren't really picky or uptight. Of course, that doesn't entirely mean we want to see a book telling your whole life story...you know, because we don't have time for books people. We won't always be able to accomodate you, but we do what we can. We haven't received hate mail (On the contrary, we've received positive feedback) so we must be doing something right. Hit me or my brother up sometime! Please do not use the guestbook if you just want to send me an email, especially if you want to send something privately.



Vyse Pic Q: "Can we contact you with requests about what articles and movies you guys should make next?"

A: The short answer (at least for the time being) is no. The long and complicated answer to that is yes. We won't discourage you and say you shouldn't send requests because we do care about what you think. However, seeing as how we (as in Vtd and BCTE) do the majority of the current site work, it's unlikely that we'll be able to work on specific requested articles at a reasonable pace because there are things we have to do too. Still, feel free to send in submissions. Sometimes we find ourselves in a slump as to what we should work on next and may find a lot of the suggestions interesting!




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