Welcome to the Gaming Sanctuary
GAME OVER BUDDY!!

Just my two cents. Picture of two pennies.My Two Cents...


We at GS are always thinking of different ways to help people and if you need general advice about games, this would be the section to find it. The concept behind this section is the work of XtremeDragoon. He is another one of the good members of GameFAQs. We've played many different types of games...both ordinary and extraordinary. Let us put our experience to work for you. We will update this section as much as we can, but this is all we have right now.


RPGs

Q: I'm lost! What should I do!? Help!

This may sound dumb, but try talking to all the NPCs (Non-Playable Characters) in the surrounding area. Usually, its more than likely that there was either a miscommunication with you and the NPCs or you may have to talk to people in "sequence". What that means is that once you talk to someone in one area, you've triggered an event or "switch" in another area. Even if you talked to all the townsfolk, you may have to talk to people you've already spoken with because they will have something new to say.


Q: I've spoken with the people and I'm still lost...Any more ideas?

Your game may have more interactivity. What this means is that you can interact (or check things, take things, etc.) with the environment. You should check every corner and search everything! Pots, jars, boxes, crates, piggy banks, you name it! Besides helping you find key items (Notebooks, diaries, dungeon keys, etc) you find various hidden goodies if you interact with an environment. The reason we say to check every corner (Every inch or square if at all possible) is because some games are famous and infamous for requiring you to do thorough investigations. We'll give two examples. The first one is the 7th Saga for the SNES (Known as Elnard in Japan). To find some items in The 7th Saga, you must search trees and seemingly useless corners to find items within towns and such. The second one is Traysia for the Sega Genesis (Known as Minato no Traysia/ Minato no Treasure in Japan). You may eventually come across a kingdom called Sandora. I won't spoil anything by telling you what takes place, but at some point, you will have to search for a gate that cannot be seen with the naked eye with a key you get from an NPC.


Q: The monsters are proving too strong! What should I do?

You can stock up on items or level grind. It's quite easy.


Q: The monsters aren't providing me with enough experience. Leveling up is requiring more time than I would like. Any tips?

There is a good chance that you may have party members with you. Party members tend to divide the experience gained by each member. If you gain 20 exp and you have two members (Hero + anonymous), each member gains 10 exp. If you have five, each member only gains 4 exp. Try getting rid of characters. Depending on the game, you can switch out members whenever you choose. Other games don't provide such a luxury, so you have to kill off your own party members. Certain RPGs, like Breath of Fire 3 (Playstation), will allow you to attack your own party members, making it easier for specific characters to die. You should also remove any and all equipment during this process so even if you must wait for the enemy to kill a member of your team, they will deal maximum damage. Try talking to NPCs too as they may have interesting tips and hints.

Also, don't take any shortcuts and flee from as few random encounters as possible. If it only takes three seconds to defeat the monsters, just fight them. You'll be surprised to find out you gained a level in an older location from just fighting the battles. A level gained is a level earned. However, it should be noted that not all RPGs have experience systems that are based on experience division. Some RPGs also make it so that enemies give less and less experience as you level up (to the point of getting zero exp) and if that's the case, fighting weaklings is a fruitless endeavor unless you are seeking item drops. Powering up one character quickly to help get you out of sticky situations can be useful, but for the games without this option, you will have to exercise patience.


Q: It's strange. My attacks aren't working against the monsters. What could be the reason?

The attacks may be ineffective because that monster may have a special weakness. You may have to hit them with an elemental attack to make them vulnerable to other damage. For example, say an enemy is a robot with a defensive barrier that deflects psychical damage (sword attacks, gun attacks, techniques from weapons, etc.) and such. You should try a lightning attack because robots are usually weak against that elemental attack. Even if the attack deals little to no damage, the electric shock may cause the enemy to malfunction, eliminating it's barrier properties. This is but one example, but I'm sure you get the idea. Some foes are tricky and can change their weakness elements. If they are weak against fire, then they will change their weakness to wind once they get hit by fire. There are several tactics that you can utilize, but try using everything you have. Usually, the answer is pretty obvious. Sometimes, you may have to think a little and use spells that may not ordinarily get used much such as spells that reflect magic and certain other of support abilities. You might also want to check if your weapon has an innate elemental property that the enemy may be strong against too. Switching to a different weapon may also work.


Q: Items are so expensive! Is there any way to make money quicker?

It depends on what kind of RPG you happen to be playing, but this rule holds true for most. Usually, there is an enemy who has a relatively high item drop rate. While the item isn't worth a fortune, you may find yourself stockpiling on it and you can sell it to make more money on top of the current money the monsters provide. There may also be easy mini-games and such where you can get items and keep selling them. One such game that comes to my mind is "Breath of Fire 2". To get good equipment early on, I (Vtd) found myself leaving the first town (once the game actually starts) and going fishing. The fish were easy to catch and sold for a tidy profit unlike typical combat (though you would be gaining EXP in fighting). If your game fits neither of those, chances are the game was made to be that way. Some games just want you to work for absolutely everything and it's a real pain. In those instances, you can use the "priority" system. Basically, buy only what you need. Don't buy the wizard-type new armor if it's expensive and doesn't yield a high defensive rating. Buy the powerful sword for the warrior instead. Just buy what's most practical. You can't always keep everyone up to speed.


Q: I'm currently playing a dungeon crawler where the floors and traps keep changing. I keep getting caught by cheap traps and the game is confusing. How should I go about proceeding thru the dungeon?

The RPG you are most likely playing is a "rouge" style RPG. While everybody has different ideas on what they think a rouge RPG is, what you described is basically a rouge style game. Random floor layouts, random items, random (and usually invisible) traps, etc. Several rouge RPGs require the player to move by "spaces", much like a game of checkers. When you move, so do the enemies of the floor. The key to doing well in these kinds of games is to progress slowly. Plan a strategy. Some RRPGs give you a very limited item capacity. Though the floors tend to be random, floor "sets" tend to be quite similar. For example, floors 1-5 are "Jungle" themed. You may find a lot of herbs and random restorative items. Floor 6-10 are "money" themed. You may find money on these floors more often. Because the aforementioned is merely a made-up example and doesn't hold true to all things, luck is definitely involved. However, the higher (or lower) you go, the more powerful things are. This usually does hold true. For that reason, if you can get healing items over a weapon that isn't all too powerful, do so. While you may be weaker, you can live longer, and find a more powerful weapon later on. This usually holds true as well.

Hang on to healing items for when you absolutely need them. To find traps, attack all the empty spaces around you. Usually, RRPGs have a button that allows your character to change direction without moving a space. By attacking the empty space around you, you may discover an invisible trap. There are also items that usually can detect traps as well as the next floor and where the monsters are currently positioned in a dungeon. If you move slow, your chances of being ambushed drop greatly. If the RRPG you are playing is in real-time like Diablo, I (Vtd) always find it as a good idea to pick long range characters like the rouge/archer. They tend to be fairly balanced and because they are long distance units, they can see enemies from far away. They are typically an ideal candidate for beginners. Watch your enemy. Observe the various characteristics and behavior that they possess. By learning how an enemy fights, you know when to heal, attack, use support skills, etc. This is just me, but I NEVER used a warrior whenever I played Diablo...well maybe once. Bel likes using them for fun though.


Q: What's the fastest way to get strong in RPGs?

There is no easy way to answer this. In some cases, training would be the key...but not just against any sort of enemies. A lot of RPGs have enemies that I tend to call "Experience Eggs" (The naming was inspired by Final Fantasy VI/III). Those enemies tend to give very generous (or in some cases, absurd) amounts of experience points for when you fight them. For example, let's say you fight three sets of battles in Grandia 3. The first set gives 1,200 exp. The second set gives 1,385 exp. The last one, which has a "Lucky Mink", gives 22,000 exp. It's pretty obvious that when the normal exp is from roughly 800 to 1,500 that the one battle that give 22,000 in that same area has an experience egg in it. Of course, defeating monsters like that in different RPGs usually have strings attached. Typically, the monsters don't appear often, run away frequently, are super quick, and in some cases, very strong. The first Lufia on SNES had its "Cube" enemies, Breath of Fire 3 had Arch Mage and Berserker, Grandia 3 had the Lucky Mink, etc. Typically speaking, monsters that yield high exp come pretty late in the game, but not always. Lufia had numerous types of "Cube" (I phrase cube the way I do because I don't remember their exact names...red core/cube, green...something like that) enemies that gave great exp. There are "money" egg type of enemies too that give tons of money but little or average experience points.

The other way is through sidequests and extra dungeons. Lots of sidequests are "time-sensitive" though. What that means is that you can only do them at specific points in the game. Let's say you have point A, B, and C. The sidequest will have you go to a cave to get a rare ingredient for a travelling salesman. The sidequest occurs at point B. The salesman will not be around at point A because he hasn't arrived in your area yet and if you begin point C, the salesman will have already left because he no longer needs the ingredient at point B. Activating sidequests can be a boring process sometimes as you have to talk to people quite often, but many sidequests are very rewarding and will make the game a lot easier because you get stronger items in a period where they aren't needed, but are good to have. Some RPGs will also have ways to increase the random encounter rate (if the game has random encounters). You can speed up how much you fight by using those. There are many exceptions to getting stronger in RPGs though and I would need to know the game in question to really answer.


Fighting (Known as Beat-em-ups to some)

Q: What is the best method of attack?

A lot of people think that mastery of a character's moveset and combinations will greatly increase their chances at victory. It certainly helps, but you don't have to possess mastery of high combos (or infinites) and/or be good at pulling off special moves to win. For me (Vyse), it's all about reading an opponent. I've been told that I usually have a very quick and aggressive style of fighting in my fighters. You may be tempted to believe this if you watch us fight in various games on YouTube. We at Gaming Sanctuary often do have a concrete understanding of the special moves, attributes of a character (speed, range, etc.), level design, and other stuff, but we also use another very important (perhaps, super important) skill: Observation. Part of GS' aggression in fighters isn't to just overwhelm opponents, but it's to observe how the player or A.I. will react to various forms of attack as well as under pressure.

How good is an opponent at intercepting jump attacks? Do they handle "corner" pressure well? Do they "turtle" (guard) a lot? Being aggressive often forces even skilled defensive players to "reveal their hand". The most obvious thing that a defensive player is going to do is guard until they find an opening in your offense. Once they exploit an opening, you know exactly what your mistake was and how to not repeat it, which limits the ways in which they can counter. I'm not trying to come off as snooty or all-knowing when I say this, but I've beaten a lot of people who thought that they can just win because they knew how to use one or two characters inside and out...without much practice at all. Depending on the character, you can fight aggressively and it just isn't that effective. In which case, you play defensively and seek to counter based on a character's strengths. If you are fighting someone new online, try to fight aggressively, even if only briefly. You may take some damage, but you can watch how your opponent moves to better understand what their fighting instincts are. Try to have at least a basic idea of how all characters function, not just one or two favorites. That can also help understand how a player plans to use a character based on their skill set. As you can see, there are numerous good ways to approach a battle, but none of them are truly the best. Observation kinda acts like a glue that can hold the whole thing together though because it tells the player how to react.


Puzzle

Q: How can I form big chains in falling object puzzle games?

LOL...falling object puzzlers aren't exactly GS' strong suit, but I (Vyse) like them any way. When I'm feeling pretty lazy and don't want to learn the true method of getting "good" at FOPGs, I tend to get as much on my field as quickly as possible. You might be wondering...why would you do THAT? Well, it's really quite simple. Even if a skilled player or CPU can do large chains, they can only do so with a lot of blocks. If they have like two rows of blocks and you have five or six rows of blocks, you have much more blocks to create chains with in a shorter period of time. I tend to just drop stuff on the left or right of the screen/playing area and leave a couple of columns in the middle open so I can make big chains when random blocks fall together. Of course, there is risk involved when using this method. If they block off your "combo" point, it's very difficult to recover and normalize your stack. However, if your opponent is skilled anyway, there is always going to be risk involved. The REAL way you get good is to practice though. I understand the idea; you create "layers" of match blocks that overlap one another and form the chains...but unless it's Tetris Attack or Pokemon Puzzle League, I can't seem to nail the concept...which is actually pretty weird. I guess if you stack lots of like colors near each other in several rows and columns, you can generate nice chains too (which I've also done). The problem though is if you don't have the "Mind's Eye" to see ahead various actions like a pro, they usually will have done a good chain long before you get a nicely organized stack. I don't quite understand it, but I'm really good at some FOPGs and bad at others, even if their core mechanics are identical.


Action

Q: This game is impossible! Too many cheap deaths and not enough time to think! Is there any way around this!?

I love a good challenge. When a game feels like it's just punching me and my brother in the junk, we retaliate with our own punches. Be persistent! When someone fails at beating a game on their third or fourth try (at least nowadays), they view the game as way too hard. On the other hand, when the game satisfies their appetite to allow them to beat the game within one or two tries, the game is too easy. Difficulty is one of the easiest things to implement in a game, but also one of the hardest factors to balance. You can make a game downright cheap by showing no concern whatsoever for humanity, or you can make things that even my little nephew can beat. I'd rather play my games at a near impossible difficulty setting than a ridiculously easy setting.

In classic gaming, the way most people got around their problems was not only with persistence, but memorization, where as most modern games have a lot more options and people are far less concerned about having to retrace their steps or repeat entire games from the beginning. You know that as soon as you jump across that chasm, the enemy ninja is going to jump out and attack you! Find a suitable weapon for that situation or learn the timing that is involved. There is an old saying (at least in our house): "A stupid person makes mistakes and doesn't learn from them. A smart person makes mistakes and learns from them. A wise person watches OTHERS make mistakes and learns from them." This principle has not only helped me in reality, but it can work for nearly anything you do. By watching mistakes take place, you remember them and learn how to rectify your mistakes. Memorization, muscle memory and patience can hone your skills and make you a master gamer with enough practice. Practice makes perfect!


Q: What would you recommend to do in action heavy games?

It is usually a good idea to destroy all the waves of enemies before proceeding to the next area. When going to a new part of the level, it's a pretty good idea to "inch your way" through, unless your health is high and you can afford to take some damage. In many cases, offscreen enemies won't come onscreen so you can take out smaller waves of enemies without being overwhelmed. Paying attention to the area/stage layout is critical too so if a game has a map or a feature to look up or down to see if there are obstacles above and below you, you may want to use them any time you find yourself in a sticky situation. If the game has dodge moves, practice using them to the best of your ability (Especially timed moves like in Bayonetta) as avoiding damage is a lot better than taking any kind of damage...unless you're fighting a boss and taking a hit actually helps you take a good deal of damage off of the boss in return.


General Purpose

Q: Vyse and Bel, do you guys know any good Japanese language websites? You used to have them listed, but I can't find them now.

Ah, yes. It was originally inside the SNES FAQ, but we are moving it here since it would be more practical. Here's the sites we've compiled thus far with a brief description of each:



1. http://web-japan.org/kidsweb/language/hiragana/index.html

A great Hiragana chart. It has audio files so you can hear the Japanese pronunciation of some characters. The sound samples aren't the greatest, but you can get an idea of how things sound. There is a second chart which shows the normal characters with dash symbols (Known as Dakuten as well as nigori-ten. My sensei called them Ten-ten, which is dot-dot which also works) and the small circle symbols (Known as Handakuten or Maru). A third chart shows characters (That end in "i" such as "Ki" or "Ji") that change with a small "Ya-Yu-Yo" is in front of them...It would require a bit of explaining to point out what I mean. You can also say different words according to the way you stress syllables (There is an example on the page. My own example is ame. One pronunciation can mean candy, sweets, or treat. Another can mean rain.). Also, If you are wondering about the R's, they can be pronounced (and romanized) as L's too.


2. http://web-japan.org/kidsweb/language/katakana/index.html

From the same link that has Hiragana pronunciations. This link has the Katakana equivalents.


3. http://japanese.about.com/blhiragana.htm

This About.com link has some lessons on how to write Hiragana on it.


4. http://www5.big.or.jp/~otake/hey/kanji/gifmoji/hiragana.gif

Superb chart of Hiragana. Should have all the main variations of Hiragana.


5. http://www5.big.or.jp/~otake/hey/kanji/gifmoji/katakana.gif

Superb Katakana chart from the same place I got the Hiragana chart that shows all (or most, but I believe it's all of them. This is so I'm not 100% wrong ;D) of the Katakana variations.


6. http://www.learn-japanese.info/firstgradekanji.html
    http://www.learn-japanese.info/indexw.html (Homepage)

You can view the homepage to see other things, but it basically has basic Kanji in some of the links. One such link is above the homepage link.

7. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kanji

Wikipedia has some information on Hiragana, Katakana, and Kanji.


8. http://www2.japanese-name-translation.com/jnt/index.asp

You can use this to help you get more accurate Japanese name translations. Put in a name like "Seramina" and they will give you the Katakana equivalent! Neat! Interesting tidbit: We used the stylized characters on the site to make our site name using Katakana. It's the first site banner of 2008.


9. http://www.jisho.org/

Man...I can't tell you how awesome this site is. If you know even a small amount of Japanese, this site can payoff big time. Some excellent translations can come up from using this site properly. It's like an online Japanese dictionary, but with great character pictures, old and new world meanings, etc.


10. http://www.csse.monash.edu.au/~jwb/wwwjdic.html

Jim Breen's WWWJDIC Japanese Dictionary Server is a site with an extremely simple design that hides just how powerful a resource it actually is when it comes to learning things like Kanji. If used in conjunction with Denshi Jisho, you have two incredibly powerful tools that can help you find out nearly anything you might want to know about Japanese, if used responsibly.


11. http://babelfish.altavista.com/

Many people will discredit sites like Babel Fish for its "Engrish" or otherwise nearly incomprehensible translation jobs, but Babel Fish is a lot more useful than one might suspect. In the hands of a reasonably good linguistics specialist or someone with at least a limited conversational level of a language, very useful information can be derived from the translations that Babel Fish spits out of its tubes. Babel Fish isn't meant for its direct translations, but rather, gaining a general understanding of what is being discussed as well as matching what you may already know with what they state to put pieces together. Of course, if you simply use direct Babel Fish translations, you may come up short and seem like a simpleton in the process. Still, Babel Fish has been around for years and its here for a reason. Heck, maybe Babel Fish was inspired by the folks who made Zero Wing's script!


Q: Where do you get all your games???

I may have answered this already, but the idea is to go to pawn shops, thrift stores, and such. Bidding on eBay auctions is another good idea too. For doujin games, you should shop on Rakuten International and buy from sellers that ship overseas...it's an awesome Amazon (or eBay or whatever) equivalent. If you live in Virginia, you should check out a place called Xtreme Media. They have a Myspace page here, but it hasn't been updated in a while.


More will be added to this page with time!





Car from City ConnectionKunoichi from Ninja WarriorsMagus from Chrono TriggerLin from the King of Fighters seriesWizards and Warriors

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