Go on then, tell us what's on your mind...
We might even respond if Thundercats finishes in time.
Updated when there's nothing better to do!"Spinosaurus? No problem, bring it on..."

"Worlds on fire, full of
pain and endless fear..."
Yep, sounds about right.

AUGUST 10, 2001

Dear Scribes,

     Got some questions for ya.
     - Can you post some pics of Japanese Joanna? I've been looking on the Japanese Nintendo site but all I could find was this vague pic.
     - While I was searching around on the site, I also found the Japanese PD box art, which is much better than the normal one I think. You know any way of getting it without buying an import PD game?
     - Over from PD to DP... Just a simple question, is Dinosaur Planet for the N64 still in production? I won't even go into the other information I've read, I'll just consider those rumours for now, as you will not give a straight answer anyway... (GameCube? StarFox??? Never mind). I hope the answer is "yes", but the removal of the DP section on your site makes me fear the worst .
     - GameCube uses DVD, are there any Rare games in production which'll use FMV? Or even cut scenes with real actors or something? Or is that info still classified?
     That's it I guess. I wish I had something to ask about Banjo-Tooie, but I still haven't got it yet. Don't worry, by the time this gets posted (wrongly assuming this gets posted), I will have it and enjoy it very much.
     Well ehm, thanks for your time?

After a bit of digging around, we've managed to unearth these two decent shots of the remodelled Joanna from the Japanese version. Nice hair. Dunno how you could get the PD box art without buying a Japanese version of the game, no (unless you count buying a Japanese strategy guide like we did).
     As for the Dinosaur Planet questions... blimey, it really has been a while since I've had time to do a 'proper' Scribes.

Dear Mr. Scribe Type Person Thingy,
     I was wondering what the point in Witchyworld is - why would Grunty keep a theme park open for Banjo & Kazooie to come in and steal Jiggies. She even has a tent where she gives you free eggs, feathers and even tells you how to get every single Jiggy in the entire game. Pointless.
     Also is Roysten (the goldfish) still alive? He was barbecued in Banjo-Kazooie, blasted by Grunty, crushed by a massive boulder, over-cooked by Mrs. Bottles then he's still alive when Bottles sticks his fork into him, how can a goldfish take that much torture?
     Hoping Roysten has a peaceful end... no more trouble with your rowdy lot.
     Cheers Mr. Scribe,
     Kevin Hygate

Megalomaniac arch-villains have to somehow offer the heroes a means to their own destruction - it's the rules.
     As for the Banjo team's ongoing fish torment: "We didn't think anyone would notice, let alone write a letter about Roysten's problematic existence. Such observation deserves a decent answer. Or maybe not. It is common knowledge that goldfish have very short memory spans, and if it wasn't for this poor Roysten would certainly be dead. Trouble is, he quickly forgets that he is mortally injured and makes a full recovery each time!"

Dear Scribes,
     Hello, I was just reading Scribes, and I must say, thank you for including that Mr. Pants letter at the end there, as I was getting tired of listening to crybabies complain about the new design of the site! Now for something completely different: personally, I'd like to see the text frame expanded a bit, and the beautiful but unnecessary renders on the left squeezed over. (How's that for hypocrisy?) Having said that, I think the new design is good in general; it's much easier to navigate (those who disagree probably just got used to the bizarre navigation of the old site through repeated use) and it looks super-spiffy.
     Finally, I was wondering if there's any chance of Mr. Pants making a cameo in any of the upcoming games? I'm thinking of becoming a Pants collector of sorts.
     Have a nice day, and thank you for putting up with idiots like me. ;)
     -David "Cheeseboy" Mitchell

Cast aside your 'serious Scribes' worries - we're back to business as usual. Sorry to those who found the last outing a bit strenuous, but the whole point of it was to address concerns over the new site so there wasn't much room for the slapstick stupidity you may have come to expect. And simplifying the navigation was one of the main objectives of the redesign - people here who didn't use the old site very often could never find the pages they wanted.
     Mr. Pants gaming news: as it happens, I heard some deeply disturbing rumours last week which I think I should keep to myself and mention only in passing to aggravate you. Don't try to guess: you don't stand a chance.

Dear Scribes,

     Thanks to that man who gave us Mr. Pants 2001, I've finally broken the 1,000,000 point mark (well I did it ages ago) and now my name sits proudly atop all them other silly names. This game is more addictive than killing Meat Sims in PDark over and over again. Anyone who hasn't got this game I should slap about with a large trout, but I won't. I'd just like to give my praise to you lovely people and the good ol' Chris for making me play games for 2 hours at my PC.
     I have some questions I'd like to ask and I'm sure you'll be just as happy to answer them. (I'll do it in the annoying way.)
     1) Will there be any aliens in Perfect Dark 2? Please say no, please.
     2) Do you wrestle in mud during the weekends?
     3) Have you ever thought that people who hack your games for secrets are stupid?
     Keep up the good work my chums, I'm sure to like your next masterpiece.
     Lots of love (!)
     Darren Gargette

     P.S. I answered 5 questions in the last contest and didn't win *sobz* Please rig it for me next time ;)

1) I'll say no if it makes you happy, but bear in mind that I know absolutely nothing about any PD sequels so my opinion's worth precisely this much: bugger all.
     2) Have you been to my club, then?
     3) Not necessarily stupid - just deeply in need of direction and a sense of self-worth.

I am happy. </sarcasm>

     I have come to inform you that Conker's Bad Fur Day is set to be released here around May 25th. This is absurd. That's 2 months after the US date! There are a lot of people here who would like to play BFD, me included. Why are Aussies disadvantaged like this? WE'VE BEEN ITCHING TO PLAY BFD FOR MONTHS.
     Mr Arse is very angry at this. He normally never hurts anyone, but to protest against this he is planning to burn everyone responsible for the delay, and the game's creators! Attached is a picture showing Mr Arse's capabilities. If this happens to GameCube games in the same fashion, Mr Arse will have a fish (and a lot of humans and buildings) to fry. I may, however, withhold the upcoming burning if BFD is worth the wait. It probably is, but you never know...
     See you soon [I'm following Arse's rampage],
     -Paul Matijevic aka Ettin

Mr. Arse appears to know some good curry houses. And as we've said time and time again, once the final version of a game leaves our hands, that's it: we have nothing to do with any of the territorial release schedules. Anyway, what are you complaining about? May 25th was months ago, so BFD's been out for ages. And don't give me any of that rubbish about sending this letter in the first week of May... you can't prove it... no, hang on, you probably can. Never mind.

This is a legitimate question, Scribes.

     Although I asked this question once before, I'm going to try again, and this time I hopefully will get a response. Unlike the usual junk that is posted on the letters page, stuff about Mr. Pant's underpants, alien love, and how everyone would change this and that about your games, my question is very legitimate and should be answered for the sake of all loyal fans of GE and PD. I recently played the new Bond game not produced by you guys and it is truly a giant step down for N64. The game uses cheap animation, prehistoric options, lame weapons, etc., and I was wondering if N64 approached you about producing the Bond sequel (if they had the IQ of a second grader, they would have come to Rareware first). If they did ask you guys to produce it, what happened? Rareware makes N64's best games, and I am truly curious why y'all didn't make this one. I hope this is a question you can respond to, for it comes from deep within my heart and the hearts of the millions who have fallen in love with your games.

Ah, PD designer time again. Just as well I decided to chain him to the doorframe when I realised not a single edition of Scribes would pass without a bunch of dippy PD/GoldenEye questions. Take it away...
"It could be said that GoldenEye placed Bond, a popular fictional character, in a popular computer game genre, namely the FPS, and this may have been in part why it was so well received. Then of course, we may just be too cool.
     "As we have said before, we chose not to make the follow-up to GoldenEye after some considerable thought, and made the decision to press on with Perfect Dark. This doesn’t exclude the possibility of doing a Bond (or indeed any) film licence in the future, but for the foreseeable future we are happy doing our own stuff."

Hey dudes,

     I have just read the latest Scribes, with all the comments about the new site. After reading them all I thought I would throw my opinion (even though it's half eaten and slightly tatty) into the ring.
     I like you, am from good old Blighty and was brought up on Chewits, Crunchies and Transformers (oh yes I am getting the DVD!). I like you tried to bunk off school to watch daytime TV, but enough of the reminiscing. My point is that I like you have damn good taste! The site is not cack (hell some of these people don't even know the meaning of cack) it is quality. If it were a drink it would definitely be better than Dandelion and Burdock although probably not as classy as Cream Soda (well come on, is anything?).
     I like the dark blue background, it's nice on the eyes and blatantly better than yellow. The fixed navigation bar IS a good idea and saves loading time for us crappy modem people.
     So anyway I thought you might appreciate a bit of arse licking because all you seem to be getting is a lot of slagging off from some smelly foreigners. Oh and forget all these Mr Pants jokes! Talk about someone a bit more classy. Yes, you know who I'm talking about, Wizpig, why do people not recognise pure class when they see it? A giant purple pig who wobbles his arse as he runs. Come on, if that's not funny what is?
     Pauly B

Better than Dandelion & Burdock? You're sick, man. The only thing better than Dandelion & Burdock is alcoholic Dandelion & Burdock (and the same goes for Cream Soda, though they don't seem to make the alcoholic version any more, damn them).
     When did anyone suggest making the site background yellow? Still, er, thanks for the positive comments, and that.
     And I don't think Wizpig intentionally wobbles his arse for comedy value - it's more to do with the fact that he's a big fat get.

Dear Scribes,

     I got your Perfect Dark wallpaper design off of your website. It automatically changed my screen to the Perfect Dark wallpaper when I right clicked the image and clicked "set as wallpaper". I later changed my screen back to how it used to be - the solar eclipse image. Now I want to change it back to Perfect Dark, but can't because my computer didn't save the image. It only saves the Perfect Dark image if I keep it on the screen forever. That is a problem because I change the screen background often. I don't want to have to keep going to your site and getting the wallpaper every time I want the Perfect Dark image.
     Do you have any ideas?

Right-click on your desktop to bring up the Properties menu, and select Background. Scroll through the list until you find Internet Explorer Wallpaper or Netscape Wallpaper: each of these should be a copy of the last wallpaper downloaded via that browser. That what you want, squire?
     Generally speaking, images have to be stored in the Windows folder in BMP format if you want them to remain in that list permanently, but seeing as BMPs are a) unsupported by browsers and b) generally bloody enormous, it's not that realistic to offer them as a download option.

Kudos Rarefolk,

     Great job on the masterful BattleToads 64!! Many people thought it had been cancelled due to the delays, but Rare once again graced the world with another near perfect product! With an innovative blend of the 3D brawler, first person shooter, classic RPG, and Japanese dating simulator, BattleToads 64 captured the imaginations of millions, following its simultaneous release with the critically tormented flop Perfect Dark. But Rare made up for this vomit-in-a-cartridge with the latest installment of the BattleToads series, eventually selling 20 million copies world wide!
     But beneath the media hype, BattleToads 64 was one of the most finely polished games ever released. Spanning five cartridges, its in-depth story line and memorable characters kept millions enthralled. And once the 300 hour single player game is finished, infinite replay value lies in the fantastic dual battle mode, supporting up to 15 players at a time, via the 64DD's online network! And the revelation at the end (the truth about Zitz's true parentage) has blown away countless fans and left them thirsting for more! The world awaits the recently confirmed BattleToads: Toad Rash for the Gamecube. If Rare leaves the near-perfect gameplay intact, they have another surefire hit on their hands! Good Luck!
     Cody Adams

Not forgetting the recently-announced Battletoads: Toad Veronica. Sorry.
     Actually, I can't decide whether this is fanboy wishful thinking or quirky sarcasm... either way, as soon as you get a job on a well-known mag or web site I'll gladly add "critically tormented flop" and "vomit-in-a-cartridge" to PD's Critical Mash page.

Dear Sir, or Madam, or whomever:

     I work at a popular video games retailer in the US, where we have game systems set up for people so they may try out games. Of course, when it's not busy, we the employees, frequently have our own bouts of game-playing. Lately we have become reobsessed (I don't think that's a real word, but come on, shouldn't it be?) with Killer Instinct Gold. I have established myself as the store champion, except when a coworker uses Glacius, because that is the only character he knows how to use, and he keeps using that razafrackin' melting uppercut move. He claims that he is better than me because I can only beat him one out of five or six times if he uses Glacius, but can beat him each and every time if he uses someone else. I can beat him mercilessly with every other character in the game (except for maybe, Spinal... he's beyond me). Anyway, he has been going crazy over the fact and insists that he should be the reigning champion since he can beat me with Glacius four times out of five. Who would you say is better, so we can settle this dispute? I would say that I am because I'm a more with all the characters, and can beat the stuffing out of him each and every time if he is NOT Glacius.
     Secondly, Do you think he is using some sort of super undocumented cheat combo thingy that allows him to win against me with Glacius, or am I just THAT bad against that stupid ice alien?
     Also, I have been trying to distract him by keeping him giddy over the prospect of a new Killer Instinct for Gamecube, regardless of whether it exists or not. The mere mention of a sheer possibility sends him into a shivering and drooling spell that lasts a good five minutes at least. I know that it is probably not in production, but that brings me to my question. Is it in production by any chance? I would hate to lose this edge over my coworker if you shoot me down with a crushing negative response. Is there still a possibility, or am I going to have to look for something new to get him giddy over, like Dinosaur Planet, or a new Conker game?
     Phil Speer
     P.S.: Battletoads... will we ever see them again, or did their brief stint with the boys from Double Dragon lead them into a life of violence and drugs the likes of which they may never return?

Tricky. A bit like Botwood on Smash Bros., who uses Kirby and all his cheap tricks unfailingly while I try to run the range of characters and get my arse kicked all the more frequently for it. At least KI's got those individual character score tables so that you can leave your irritating co-worker to his Glacius obsession while you make your mark elsewhere... personally, I'd say that since he can only use one character effectively against your eight or nine, a winner is you!!
     All Battletoads and KI franchise questions will currently get you the same "well, you never know" response. I'm not quite as touchy as Tusk on the subject, but you still won't get any worthwhile info out of me.

Dear Scribes,

     Well, since you're now accepting questions about the new titles from E3, allow me to direct a few your way in anticipation of witty non-answers.
     1. I love Diddy Kong Pilot with a passion. Will it have adventure elements like Diddy Kong Racing did?
     2. Will its battle mode be playable with four people and only one cartridge?
     3. Will Donkey Kong Racing have as much of an adventure side to it as the previous DKR did?
     4. Coconut Crackers... think you'll actually get away with that name?
     5. Will Star Fox Adventures still have that dino-flying level where you shoot down an aerial pirate ship... the one that was in Dinosaur Planet on N64?
     6. How much like traditional Star Fox games will the Arwing levels be?
     7. In Kameo, what's the incentive to not always toss out your trained monsters? At E3, they were free, fun to watch, and really far too effective against the baddies...
     8. Also in Kameo, will each creature morph only have one ability like in the demo?
     Umm, so there. I know it'll just kill you to visit all those different developer guys, but this is stuff we need to know. Or at least it's stuff I need to know, and that's all that matters in the end.
     Jonathan Metts

Hah! Dissing my motivation, are you? Check out this bunch of stuff from the relevant designers:
     1. "Yes there is an adventure element to Diddy Kong Pilot, as many of the characters in the game have their own Story to play through."
     2. "Battle mode will only be playable with multiple cartridges, as we have something special sorted out for them. However, several race tracks will be available to play with just one cartridge."
     3. "The adventure element will feature much more heavily, only less so, and will be implemented in some areas, but obviously not others - to a higher or sometimes lower degree than is currently planned."
     4. Remains to be seen.
     5. "Yes, we still have the dino flying level with the pirate ship."
     6. " We haven't actually said yet that there are going to be ArWing levels and if they do exist, then they will be similar though also different."
     7. "Every monster will react and respond to fights in very different ways. Some will be very brave and aggressive, others will be timid or passive. The monsters in the E3 demo behaved in a very aggressive way to make it easy for first time players to get to grips with the basic controls."
     8. "Each character will have more than one ability in the finished game."
     There you go. Sorted. Now get updating them previews, boy.

     Now that you're 3, maybe you can start acting just a little more mature there. No more of this childish Mr. Pants stuff. What you need is Neo Pants. (He works really good as the custom wall for Windows' 3-D Maze screen saver.)
     Now for the smooth as arse segue into my list of moronic questions:
     1) Does the Gamecube development hardware look anything like a cube yet?
     2) As a Nintendo 2nd party employee, are you allowed to take a Gamecube home? You know, for *ahem* telecommuting.
     3) How much of your time, percentage-wise, do you spend reading this type of swill?
     That should be enough. Thanks for the games, your time, and for keeping my name on your page for so long.

Damn you, forcing me into having even more Mr. Pants on my desktop. And that dirty mac makes him look more like a flasher than some kind of gunslinging cyber-Messiah.
     1) No, it's cow-shaped.
     2) Of course! Absolutely! When I buy one in November.
     3) It feels like all day, every day. But if I force myself to admit to the truth, it's probably only about half an hour every morning (though
the scars last forever).

Dear Scribes,

     In reply to your response to Adam Murray's letter, I'm afraid I'm probably to blame for that rumor as I posted you as the developer of the Virtual Boy unreleased Goldeneye 007 game on my website (www.virtual-boy.net) a while back along with a big scan of an in-game screenshot from an official Nintendo brochure, it seemed only logical as I thought Rare owned the Goldeneye license to making games of it in 1995, any idea who did if not you?
     Oh, and why are you not allowed to say Virtual Boy Donkey Kong Country was in development? I realize not much code could have been finished in a few weeks work, but I also heard a designer had been at work on the game, is there any chance you'd be able to give out some artwork from the unreleased game? New Virtual Boy info is pretty hard to come by these days you know.
     Faithfully yours,
     Ferry Groenendijk from The Netherlands
     PS: The picture of GoldenEye 007 I scanned is pretty big, so I will just link you to it.

You're not joking about it being "pretty big".
     No idea who was working on VB GoldenEye, but rest assured it wasn't us. Interesting take on it, though: looks a bit like Chase HQ.
     And it wasn't Donkey Kong Country, it was Donkey Kong Country 2. It didn't get very far. I used to share a house with the bloke who was doing the title screen, though that's probably not the earth-shattering exclusive you were hoping for.

Dear Rarist of Rare's (Eh? - Ed),

      First of all, I'd like to comment on your new look. Although slow, it's very, very good. You get the change to interact a lot more too (Eh? - Ed), good work!
     Anyway, the titles you revealed for Gamecube thus far look brill. In fact, I am buying Gamecube solely to play your games. All the titles look fantastic, but my personal favourite has to be Donkey Kong Racing. I love the prospect of flying around on Zingers, Neckies etc. By the looks of Donkey Kong Racing so far, it seems we get to ride through many locations from the Donkey Kong Country series. Is this true? (Like you are going to tell me.) Anyway, I hope you include all the Kongs from the DKC series, I really do miss Dixie! Oh, and don't forget Squitter!
     Keep up the great work!
     Squitter Himself

You're right, I'm not going to tell you. Because I don't know. But I will ask the team on your behalf (don't get too excited):
     "Maybe. We might. The fact that you boast about really 'doing' Miss Dixie only confirms the reports of her being the trailer trash Kong. We already have forgotten Squitter."

Dear Scribes,

     I like Rare. I first liked Rare when you were in nappies, when I used to make my Speccy smell of hot sour milk after a day’s rubber button pummelling. I was there crossing my arms disapprovingly while you fumbled with the Commodore 64 in your spotty-teenage years, and I now stand by proud as you attach go-faster stripes to Nintendos in countries that are younger than you.
     When I discovered that you intend to ressurrect the old ZX Spectrum moustachioed swash-buckler Sabreman, I shivered with anticipation. Whilst nostalgia is not as good as it used to be, I revel in the the idea that I can push round the characters that lighted and blighted my youth.
     Any plans for further old Spectrum characters to be dusted off? Was there a decision not to base the characters in the rather splendid Jet Force Gemini on Lunar Jetman? Or do the money men in your big new shiny building consider the now proportionally small UK customer base to be second fiddle and not worth pandering to compared with the rather more wallet-swelling US market? Who writes the stories behind the characters and plots of the games...? Can I do it?
     Charlie Z.

Hang on - you go straight from enthusing over the new version of Sabre Wulf to moaning about our abandonment of Ultimate characters for fear of upsetting the US market. Tsk. The ratio of people familiar with Ultimate's games to those familiar with Rare's games is vastly unbalanced, yes, but now and again we throw in a character or reference (or even an entire game - see Jetpac in DK64) to keep the proud Ultimate flame burning. Maybe the new Sabre Wulf will be the start of a full-scale renaissance, maybe not... here's hoping.
     And each game's designer is generally responsible for its plot and characters (along with a lot of other stuff, before you all start sending in knee-jerk applications).

Dear Scribes,
     Here's some comments on the Perfect Dark multiplayer levels, which were prompted by the letter in the May Scribes. Here goes:
     Skedar: This, honestly, has to be one of the worst levels in PD. It would be pretty cool if it were a bit more compact, but as it is, it's irritating trying to get around.
     Pipes: Actually a pretty good level, the layout is interesting, and the bottomless pit covered by pipes adds to the fun even more.
     Area 52: This level becomes a lot more fun after subsequent playings, and the guard towers are especially great parts.
     Warehouse: I think this level is a bit weak. It's just too small and cramped for my taste, and there are too many boxes.
     Ravine: This is one of my least favorites, mostly due to the huge amount of pits.
     G5 Building: This has to be one of the best levels. The walkways provide great sniping spots, plus one can jump from walkway to walkway to avoid enemies.
     Grid: Cool design, an elevator, and lots of glass to break. I love the part with the glass floor, allowing you to blast enemies below you (and vice versa). Plus, the rooms with the columns are reminiscent of the infiltration scene in "The Matrix".
     Villa: I don't find this very enjoyable, mainly because of its setup, and other annoying parts.
     Sewers: This level is too small, and too irritating trying to negotiate.
     Base: Can be fun, especially with the 2 floors connected by ladders.
     Fortress: This level isn't that great. All 4 sections are quite far from each other, and just about the only good ambush spot is the one on the top of the middle part.
     Ruins: It's kind of fun sniping from the cliffs in here, but the interior gets really annoying at times.
     Car Park: This has to be one of the WORST levels in PD. Some unconnected rooftops, and four large stairwells. It would have been cool if you had put one large staircase like that in the Grid, or if you made the 3 rooftops all visible from the top, allowing you to snipe across them.
     Temple: Rareware's done a great job in fixing up a few minor problems from the original, mainly allowing you to drop down the holes from one floor to another.
     Complex: Already a cool arena, Rare has done a great job of compacting the level more, especially letting us drop off the overhangs.
     Facility (I refuse to call this Felicity): Still the best arena. However, you've made it even better by making there three ways to leave the vents, along with making it easier to get back in. However, I find it disturbing that there are no doors on the stalls in the level.
     Well, that's all for now.
     Kodos 86

That's a bit on the lengthy side. Fancy forcing me to make use of my rusty editing powers after all this time.
     Interesting psychological observation from the designer: "So, you prefer ‘close-in’, ‘hand-to-throat’, ‘opponent’s-breath-on-your-face’, ‘whites-of-their-eyes’, ‘up-close-and-personal’-type arenas, do you?"
     I'm not asking the lead programmer for comments, because I just know that his vicious streak will compel him to ask why you haven't rated any of the secret multiplayer levels.

Dear Scribes,

     Rare's the best. Here are my questions: Is SFA: DP the result of a collaboration between Nintendo and Rare, or is it solely Rare's game? Will Vela and Juno make cameo appearances in SFA: DP? Is the thing that swallows Fox McCloud Mizar?
     PS: The link leading to Scribes (May) is broken.
     PPS: I love you.
     PPPS: Mr Pants Advance: Look!!! It even rhymes!!!
     PPPPS: KI3.

Here are my answers: a) Nintendo's franchise, Rare's game (though Nintendo obviously have a say in some design issues). b) I seriously doubt it. c) Don't be stupid.
     PS No it's not.
     PPS If you think I'm marrying you and changing my surname to 'Arse', you can think again.
     PPPS Great!!! We'll make it immediately!!!
     PPPPS That doesn't rhyme.

Dear Scribes,

     I just went through the Archives, and I couldn't believe what games you guys had made. I was maybe about 5 when those games came out. I remember playing the game where you unite Ernie and his rubber duckie through the pipes... I still think that's one of the coolest games I've played. Really. And I played it so much that I became incredibly good at it. And I remember California Games, too. Well, I only played the sequel to it on the SNES, and I bet some other developer made it, because it's not in the Archives. I wanted to congratulate you on all those sweet games and say you really did a frickin' good job on them. But just two things:
     1. Why in God's good name did you make some of the games you did? I know I just finished praising you for them, but I can't believe you made a game about Anticipation and Jeopardy and all that other stuff... and almost everything I saw was based on a popular arcade game! But they are still good, though.
     2. Those Sesame Street games are perhaps some of the coolest I've played. All those games are really good, and I really want to play Arch Rivals.
     Well, that'll be all. Please put this on a future Scribes, I beg you!
     The Rare Game Expert

     P.S. Were you doing a Scribes at the time you were putting in the little caption for Arch Rivals? Or are you just obsessed with arses? (I'm probably right the second time.)

Sesame Street ABC, a classic in anyone's books. I used to play the Spectrum version of California Games: it was crap.
     1. I don't know. Before my time. And I'm not asking any of the management in case they get mad and fire/kill me. Notice Freddie Mercury and Bobby Ewing out of Dallas on the cover of Anticipation, though. Worth it just for that, surely?
     2. Er... okay.

Dear Scribes,

     I just got done reading reviews for your upcoming StarFox Adventure: Dinosaur Planet, and I must say, though the graphics are indeed stunning, there is something about this game that has myself, and quite a few others, shall we say, miffed.
     From what I understand, dinosaur planet is an abandoned N64 project that was moved up to Gamecube's release. I also understand that Fox and crew were not the original characters. This has me wondering a little. Many of my friends are fellow StarFox fans, and we have followed the fandom furiously. We played the original StarFox for SNES, and we got tastes of the abandoned StarFox2. We all played StarFox64, and loved the plot enhancements in it. We've all been waiting patiently for the next SF game, and once hearing one was destined for Gamecube, we were ecstatic.
     Just last night, one of us stumbled upon an article on IGN about SFA. We were all over it, but, when we looked deeper into it, we were met with disappointment. Some of our members looked deeper into the original screenshots for Dinosaur Planet, and saw the original character simply written over with Fox. This made many people start saying things to the extent that this action is nothing but a desperate cry from Rare trying to sell a game by putting a popular game face in it. I for one share this sentiment. StarFox, to us, is a sci-fi adventure space shooter, with some dramatic storylines on the side. The Magna in Nintendo Power during the years of SFSNES was a sign that there was far much more to StarFox than simply fly through a planet, blow stuff up, and fight a big head at the end. There was love with characters destined for SF2. StarFox is space based sci-fi, yet, this new game. This is Zelda meets Banjo-Kazooie with Fox thrown in for popularity.
     I've seen screenshots from the upcoming Smash Brothers for Gamecube, and the rending there is so much more accurate to the classic StarFox.
     I know many people are spending hours on this game, and I know it's a pain, but, what you are doing is being considered wrong by many members of our community. I can only wish you luck on selling this game. I myself am not very interested in it, it's so close to a spit in the face of what StarFox really is that I'm likely going to go buy Smash Bros.
     Thanks for your time, I hope you guys understand where I'm coming from here.
     -Will "NeoPhoenix" Wallingford

"What StarFox really is"? Define "what Mario really is". Platformers, sports games, party games, RPGs... there are no rules stating that a franchise has to be restricted to exactly the same format with each new outing. Okay, so StarFox Adventures is a pretty big change in direction from what's gone before - but as you rightly observe, there is more to StarFox than blowing stuff up in space, and all Rare are doing is exploring that with Nintendo's blessing. It doesn’t mean that anything’s set in stone for future StarFox escapades. Anyway, if you're such a purist, how come you're so big on Fox strutting his funky stuff in a cutesy 2D beat-'em-up?

God bless you, Rare!

     Rare, you have made all my wettest dreams come true... finally... a Starfox RPG! I love you Rare. God bless you, sirs. Starfox is my favourite franchise (next to... erm... that fighting one... whatsitcalled? You did it methinks) and I'm delighted that you've taken the game I was most looking forward to on the N64 and created the game I've been hoping for since the Starfox on the SNES (or Starwing as it's known over 'ere)! Could you please please please please please answer a couple of questions, they won't be too hard!
     1. Why did you decide to change DP?
     2. Whose idea was it?
     3. How often do you use the Arwing?
     4. Does this take place outside the Lylat System (or is it simply a planet in the system we've never flown over before?)
     5. Does Fox own 'the stick' or does he find it on his quest?
     Thanks a bunch... can't... wait... till this... game comes out!
     Harry Steele
     P.S. Cool new site, fellas!

You see? Not all StarFox fans are so negative.
     1. Have you read the FAQ? Eh? Go and read it now, Tommy.

     2. Originally Miyamoto-san's. The story's well-documented...
     3. According to the designer: "A little". Erm, if they exist, that is.
     4. You'll just have to wait and see, won't you?
     5. 'The stick' belongs to another character that Fox meets early on.
     PS Cheers - I won't tell Sue you called her a fella.

Dear Mr. Tripedox Pants Williamson,

     Ive just seen all the screenshots for Kameo and am pretty impressed. One thing I was wondering though is will the combat be realtime or will it be turnbased Pokemon style? If it's Pokemon style that wouldn't be as cool. I hope that the monsters seen in the screenshots are the low-end creatures from the beginning of the game. For the powerful monsters I'm hoping for more of the gigantic, flame spewing, sword toting creatures a la Ganon from Z.O.O.T . Star Fox Adventures should be good as long as we don't see Slippy, Slippy gets killed in the course of the game, or we have the ability to kill Slippy. I'll bet ya chips to vinegar Andross will appear as the real villain by the end of the game. DK Racing looks like Donkey Kong Country in 3-d, or what I wanted DK64 to look like. I didn't see the frog in the demo! The frog better be in the game! (By the way what is the name of the frog anyway?). Will there be a DK adventure game for Gamecube? Will the forums ever be back? Will there be a birthday suit level for Perfect Dark 2? Seriously that alone would sell about 3 million games. WiIl the weasel gangster be in Conker's Other Bad Day?
     Chris Mahoney
     P.S. Did you know that in the board game Battletech one of the famous worlds is called TWYCROSS?! Please make a game similar to Mechwarrior!
     P.P.S. Don't post this whole letter as it's tripe. Instead cut it up and post parts in Snippets so it will make no sense and people can laugh at me.

Oh no! I've accidentally... etc.
     "The combat in Kameo will be realtime as opposed to turn based. We decided that the stop-start nature of a turn based system wouldn't suit Kameo's other arcade-like gameplay aspects." So there you go.
     Hot frog racing action? Unlikely. Forums? There are hundreds of the things around - if we brought ours back they'd still have to be moderated and only updated once every few months, so we get less complaints by leaving them out completely. And according to SFA:DP's designer, Slippy is "just misunderstood"...

Hello Scribes-dude!
     Right, I'll get straight to the point; the G5 Building (in single player) is wrong. A while ago I was toying with blatantly copying the Chicago/G5 levels and combining them into one map for Counter-strike (I don't know if I'm legally allowed to do that really, but if I'm not I can easily deny everything). (That'll be convincing. - Ed) The problem is that in the G5 building, the floor is on the wrong level. I assume that the car-park lift takes Joanna down one floor, and so the room she starts in the G5 would be directly below the car park lift entrance in Chicago. However, if you use the Farsight or X-ray Scanner, you can see that Joanna is still on ground level with outside. The only thing I can think of which could have caused this is that at one point, the mine was either to be placed on the ground or first floor blocked-up-doors on Chicago, but this was too easy. So, I demand an official apology from the person or persons responsible, and I demand that my theory is verified, so I can feel smug. Anyway that's it.
     James Stenhouse
     P.S. If you're going to speak to the designers, tell them how impressed I am with the connectivity betweed the vent/drain between Chicago and the G5 dampening field room, even though this is on the wrong level too. Still, marks for effort...

Of course I'm going to speak to the designer. What, you think I can be bothered answering this myself? Here's his explanation...
     "Wrong. The lift takes her across; some of the walls of the building are sandwiched around a specially constructed gel layer that prevents any underground eavesdropping when the gel is charged by a massive current. The gel layer needs to be a few metres wide, so the ‘lift’ has to cross this. The other side of the building is protected from eavesdropping by a micromesh (again charged by a current) which Joanna was able to break through with a mine to make her escape. Really, you should think things through a little more carefully next time.
     "The decision not to connect the two levels was made after some of the elements were modelled, resulting in the odd layouts you describe. The drain was to be another way into the building. Basically, if we’d have wanted it to work, it would have worked, so obviously it doesn’t because we didn’t or couldn’t care less. You can keep your marks for effort and take this smack in the mouth, too."
     Bless him.

Dear Scribes,

     Hey, for a while now I've had this brill idea for a game! But don't know what to do with it, what about a "your games" page. Readers send in their ideas for games and if they're really good you consider them during your next brainstorm or whatever you do. If you decide to use a major element in a game the person gets credit at the end credits, and a certificate of "Rare brilliance" to use in a future developer's portfolio.
     I have developed my idea and it is a game I would really like to play, and I think Rare would be the best developers to do it.

I see you're reluctant to take that final, sad step in this logical process. "Readers send in their ideas for games and if they're really good you consider them during your next brainstorm... then, even if the person gets full credit, they demand a vastly disproportionate share of the profits and/or decide that there's big money to be made in suing the company."
     Also, we've got in-house designers for a reason: because they're good at what they do. If your ideas are good too, you'll land a design job one day and then you'll be able to do what you like. Within reason.

A Q For The Scribes.

     This has had me wondering ever since I first played Banjo-Kazooie. I hope I can get this straightened out from the only ones who can give me a, hopefully straight answer. (But coming from you guys, I’m not that sure.) Okay, on to the question. What is up with Banjo and Kazooie’s relationship? Are they just really good friends or are they... something more? Yes, I’m aware that I’m a sick little perv to think that a bear and a bird can have a more intimate relationship, but I just needed to know. After all, they live in the same house. They must have been through a lot to be able do that. My friend doesn’t think I’m nuts and we both think there’s something going on. So, is there? I’d appreciate you try to answer without making me look like an idiot, and not giving me a stupid, half-hearted answer like Nintendo always does with all my questions.
     Thanks, you guys rock!

You take the time to send in questions like this, admit that you discuss it with your friends then ask us not to say anything stupid or make you look like an idiot? Um... I'm passing it on to the Banjo team.
     "Well, we can't guarantee anything better than a half-hearted answer but we'll have a go. They live in the same house because it's the only house in Spiral Mountain. Kazooie used to sleep rough under the bridge to Grunty's Lair, shouting abuse at passers-by in an alcohol-induced haze. Banjo took pity on the poor bird and carried her back to his house in his backpack. Kazooie wanted to stay in the warmth of the backpack and Banjo was glad of the company (being the only person that lived in Spiral Mountain), so they hang around together in a strictly platonic kind of way. Is that good enough for you?"

Dear Scribes,

     I have to say, the new site redesign DOES grow on you after a while. I guess it takes a bit. But it needs more odd ALT tags scattered hither and fro. But enough of that two-sentence banter, here's some questions...
     1. How do you pronounce Kameo's name? My friends say it's just like the word 'cameo' (KAM-ee-oh), I think the emphasis is on a different syllable, more like cah-ME-oh...
     2. When are the Scribes/Uncle Tusk archives coming back up? We at least need Sean Williamson's first appearance in its full glory!
     3. Would you be so kind as to give us some Blast Corps MP3s?
     That's it. See? Relatively painless. Relatively.
     -Nicholas "Captain Spam" Killewald

1) Kameo. Just Kameo. Kam-ee-oh. As in codpieces and Word Up. Get away with your fancy alternative syllable emphasis.
     2) I'm tackling 'em whenever I've got some spare time, working back from the most recent.
     3) Don't hold your breath - the composer's been off frolicking in different pastures for some time now...

Dear Scribes,

      I figure you must have been asked the following question before, but I read through "Current Scribes" and didn't find it and currently there are no links for "Previous Scribes," so if you've already answered this question, too bad! HAHAHAHAHA! Anyway, here's the question: I tried the "Magic Code" "Jukebox" in Diddy Kong Racing and went through all the songs. I recognized every single song except song number 12.
     I have played through the entire game and I cannot find song number 12 anywhere in the game besides the Music Test. I assume it's a song that D. Wise composed, but that was never used anywhere in the final version of the game besides the Music Test, but of course there is the possibility that I just never found it. Could you please tell me whether or not song number 12 can be found anywhere in the game besides the Music Test and if it can, where can it be found?
     In contrast, I would imagine you've never been asked the following question: I suppose this is a pretty ridiculous question, but I guess I may as well ask while I'm here... I'm curious. Song number 40 in the Music Test is the music for Boulder Canyon. I find it interesting that D. Wise lumped all the different variations of the song together into one song and just muted all but one variation for different parts of Boulder Canyon. At least that's what I assume he did. Listening to song number 40, though, if you listen carefully enough, you'll notice pizzicato strings doing a little arpeggio thing. As far as I can tell, those pizzicato strings aren't actually used anywhere in Boulder Canyon! So my question is similar to the last one; were the pizzicato strings put in by D. Wise, but never used in the final version of the game or is there actually some place in Boulder Canyon where one can hear those pizzicato strings?
     Susan Carriere

     P. S. Tell D. Wise he did a good job. I really love some of his tunes. I think I have more fun with the Music Test than I do with the rest of the game.
     P. P. S. Tell D. Wise I'm sorry if he's a girl.

"Sorry if he's a girl". Snigger. Daisy! Could you come and answer these, Daisy?
     "1. Tune number 12 in the Music Test was the original Music used for Pirate Cove. Game development being a continually evolving process meant that the Music changed at some point, probably to reflect a change in graphics or course design.
     "2. The missing pizzicato strings in Boulder Canyon, during gameplay: the sound chip in the N64 has to share resources with both the graphics and game processing. To keep the speed of the game to its optimum performance, we had to make a small sacrifice, hence you no longer hear the pizzicato strings during gameplay.
     "3. Thank you for your compliments regarding the music, and rest assured, the D stands for David.
     "PS. You'll be able to hear more music from me in Star Fox Adventures: Dinosaur Planet."

Dear Scribes,

      I was wondering if i could get the nessacery partitions for "The Heist" song in Conker's Bad Fur Day. By the way I love that game it's the coolest video-game i've ever played!! It's hilarious! I also love d Perfect Dark I really hope the rumors are true that your going to make a prequel to Perfect Dark on the Gamecube!
     :-P nick :-P trick :-P

"The nessacery partitions"? Eh? What are you talking about? Are you drunk? If you're looking for Heist as an MP3, try the BFD downloads page - it was one of the first tunes we put up.

Dearest Scribetron:
     Your E3 showings. Besides being somewhat disappointed that I couldn't track you down, I was most impressed by your least 'ready' game, Kameo. First off Kameo the character is really well done. She has a Jet-Forcey look to her, comboed into 'chocolate hot elf goodness', complete with those ears... mmm... Kameo ears... er, anyway, the character design is really good. The game play itself was pretty damn well done too, and I look forward to more information on it. The boss battle was pretty darn good, and the Vs. Screen was amazing, Kameo showing off her attitude was great =^.^= However, probably the Just Plain Neat feature that I really got into was Kameo "bending" to "fit" in the creature skins. Seeing her scrunch up into the weird bird deal, then stretch way out in the KangaGecko deal looked really nice. One thing that struck me is it seemed to almost be Things That were Thought of For Berri in pre-BFD
Conker, which is fine, just wondering if that has any reality to it.
     Oh, and tell the Dino Planet team they're lucky they kept Krystal in. People who remove catgirls from games are dealt with swiftly 'round these parts.
     Also, being mentioned this far past the whole 'Rar' debacle back during Hurricane Floyd in the previous Scribes is eerie =o.o= make them stop.
     -ExoByte =^.^=

It's too late: you and your unreasoning fear of Floyd have become part of the Scribes mythos. You cannot die, MacLeod. Accept it. Mind, you'd better ease off the "chocolate hot elf goodness" before your reputation takes a turn for the worse...

Muscular sweaty men in tights grappling each other, wrong or efficient?
Reuben Cruz

Efficient, provided it ends in permanent disabling injury.

How do space ships change direction in space when there's, like, nothing for the engines to like push against - I sent this question into Focus magazine but they didn't print it - I guess I should have went to school.
Bender (like the robot, not like a Bender)

They don't teach that, they teach rubbish like maths and grammar.

You must help me. That excellent fanart picture of Vela from Perfect Dark, you must tell me where Mr. Pants is in it. PLEASE!!!

In one of the white background bits. And it's JFG.

Why is Fox McCloud on your main page? Rareware didn't make the StarFox games, so why is he there?
Finch Family

Follow these instructions: a) Go to New Games page. b) Kick self.

I have called my band Faffmaster Spiv, taken from your navigation thingy. Is this ok? Please don't beat me.
P.S. All our songs are stupid and/or rubbish.

I'd have sued for defamation of character if they were any good...

When Mr. Scarecrow Birdy asks me for Mepsipax, I get scared...
Sam Bruce

It's okay to be scared of Birdy. We all are.

Just a suggestion here, I was wondering if you would consider doing a remake of Anticipation. I think it would be great, and since the GameCube has four controller ports there would be no controller sharing needed. Thanks for reading.
-Jeff C. & Jess D.

And hey, thanks for writing! But try not to do it again.

Have you ever written Scribes while drunk?

No, but I frequently write it while begging to be shot.

My question is if you can give me a complete list of Rareware games for N64? I can think of a few but not all. So please help me.
Toni Tenebruso

Click Archives. Click 64-Bit Games. Kick self (again).

I feel the need to apologize, as an American, that you sat through Highlander: Endgame. I am sorry.

Water off a duck's back: I sat through Fortress 2 and Mean Guns as well.

In Witchyworld, why don't Banjo the Bullion Van's tail lights glow in the dark? It's just dangerous!! How can we porcupines expect to see him coming?
- The Unconquerable Foop

Because if you're in Banjo-Tooie, odds on you've got huge bulging eyes.

could you tell me when your coming out with pd2.and could you give me information about the second.like Joanna Dark's new adjectives.
John James

I hear that she's recently looked up 'insouciant' and 'quixotic'...

I just want to know if your going to make Conker's Bad Fur Day for Nintendo64.

If anyone can think of a funny answer to this one, send it in.

Mr. pants rocks!!! I love how his name is mr. pants and he's not wearing any pants! It's so brilliant!
- Kitty

Isn't it!!?! It's just the best!!!!

Gameboy Advanced is an advanced tat is... wait... no... hold on...

...there's no D on the end and you've made yourself look a fool.

Is bumlooker a real word in Britain people talk?

It wasn't until you came along.