Go on then, tell us what's on your mind...
We might even respond
from the local chippy.
Updated aggravatingly infrequently!
Cyborg turkey sans festive accoutrements

As Shakespeare himself once put it:
"You see that Scribes, it's a
right load of skanky old toss."

FEBRUARY 12, 2001

Dear happy people of Scribes,Mr. Pants Dancing Adventure

     I've attached some box art of Mr. Pants Dancing Adventure, the Japanese edition. Mr. Pants and 14 other arses jam in this DKR-ish party. Okay then.
     By the way, I'm looking for a picture of Groggy, Soggy, and Moggy. You have?

Yep, headlong into the RPAs this month. I can appreciate the need to have a popular character on the front of the box in order to help sell the product, but actually including Mr. Pants in the game with those incredible moves of his... well, it's going to seriously unbalance the gameplay mechanics.
     And of course I've got a picture of old Boggy's dysfunctional children. Here it is, look. I even know which one's which, though I'm not sure that's a good thing.

Dear really mysterious person who is more mysterious than the pink mystery egg but not as mysterious as the blue mystery egg and is just as mysterious as the mysterious Ice Key in Banjo-Kazooie,

     ...oh, alright, I'll ask some questions relating to what must be your favourite game at the moment, Banjo-Tooie. Look, they're even in nice, numerical format and everything:
     1.) Why does Honey B. sound suspiciously like Brentilda from BK when she talks? Good grief, here comes that whole cross-dressing issue again...
     2.) And speaking of cross dressing, what is up with Jolly and his *cough* partner? Jolly has a couple of...erm, "Jolly" (dare I say it - gay? =D ) looking habits, such as wearing flares, flailing his arms wildly when he talks and the lovely sampled "ooh, ooooh, ooh, ooh, oooh, ooooh" when he talks? And don't get me started on Jolly's partner - generous sizing, overused lipstick and hair that straight just CAN'T be natural.
     3.) What did poor George and Mildred do to die such horrible, horrible deaths? I felt horribly guilty at pushing George off to his doom. Mildred, meanwhile, didn't make me feel so bad - not when there was a JINJO at stake! There was no hesitation there. Ha ha.
     4.) Why do I get a strange amount of satisfaction when I double-tap B to use Kazooie as a mallet? Hearing the screech of Kazooie followed by Banjo's "Guh-Huh" pleases me to no end, for some strange reason...
     5.) Where was our good old "legless armadillo" Toots' new script and expanded role? The poor little critter even lost his sound effect in Tooie!! Toots, get yourself a better agent, and then get yourself a lawyer.
     6.) What is this mysterious "ESRA" that is carved into the top of the code chamber? It is some kind of ancient chant, used to resurrect primitive gods?
     7.) Where can I get myself a subscription to the Pants Channel, like Boggy? "All Pants, All the Time!"
     8.) Does Chris P. Bacon have a relation who is by any chance, called "Chris E. Hamm"?
     Well anyway, I'll leave these questions for you, which are more important than the meaning of life itself. And don't forget to erase the first four vowels of every email you receive after this one - just to make them a bit more interesting.
     Aussie Ben (aka Ben Kosmina)

1. Response from the team musician (to be said in pseudo-Scottish Yorkshire accent): "Ah thort thot ah'd gut away wi' thot, n' thot norbody 'ud nortice, like."
     2. It's the designer from here on in: "Well, as all our previous games and characters are invariably called 'gay' anyway, we'd thought we'd just cut out the middleman and put a real 'Jolly' one in there ourselves. It all came about from our pathetically childish sense of humour, as his establishment was originally called the 'Jolly Roger Inn'. Ms. Merry Maggie is actually a representation of the ideal woman of one of our artists.
     "3. George didn't die, as he became part of the water in Hailfire Peaks that was subsequently piped into Jolly Roger's Lagoon's swimming pool. So if we were to freeze the pool, George would be reborn as Super George - bigger, colder and prisoner to two little pigs.
     "4. Not half as much as it pleases Banjo, who has had to endure two games' worth of Kazooie pecking his head. This move was supposed to be in Banjo-Kazooie, but the evil deadline monster unfortunately put paid to it. Undeterred, the move finally made it into the sequel for the amusement of strange chicken-bashing lovers such as yourself.
     "5. I'm afraid that a common trait of the mysterious Toots race is to 'just sit there and do bugger all'. So it was only doing what came naturally.
     "6. Only if there is a god of backsides...
     "7. Try watching British television some time, all they seem to broadcast is pants.
     "8. No, but there is Crisp N' Dry, Chris P. Aromatic-Duck and er, Chris... oh, I can't be bothered to make any more up. Now please go away and let us get back to work on Banjo-Fiveknuckleshufflie."

Dear Scribes,

     Are there any plans on putting together another installment to the Killer Instinct saga that would be so Crucial if you did I love me some K.I., K.I. gold was off the chain I must say and if you guys at rare did have any plans on putting together a new K.I. you should wait till the new 64 game cube comes out and put it on there. Just a few suggestions It would be nice if you would put everybody on there meaning the old ppl too like Cinder, Chief Thunder everyone even Eyedol and a couple of new characters would'nt be bad either thanks for your time.

What a superb letter. Straight from the 80s. Not only did you say "off the chain", you said "crucial" as well - and capitalised it. It's only this (well, and the bit about the "new 64 game cube") that prevents me from passing your mail on to Uncle Tusk for him to deal with as he sees fit.

Dear Scribes,

     Whilst I was visiting the Rare Forum, I noticed something--something so terrible, so atrocious, so horrific... yes, it's true. Two subtitles of the animated numbers of your "threads" were, well, incorrect. Oh sure, everything was fine up to number 12, but when I reached number 13 (What a coincidence, huh?), things got kinda' messy. The subtitles for both 13 and 14 were "12". Now I'm not trying to cause trouble, but I just think that they should be changed before things get worse.
     Your altruistic subtitle reader,

You're absolutely right. However, I feel that a matter of this import encompasses more than the feelings of one man and should be put to a public vote before any rash preventative action is taken. It's up to you, people: should the ALT tags of Forum threads 13 and 14 be changed to their respective numbers, or should we not attempt to meddle with long-established forces and leave them as we found them, inaccurate as they are? I solemnly await your verdict.

Dear Scribes Person,

     I'm baaack! I have some Banjo-Tooie questions that will be irritating for you to answer. (I'm thinking of changing my name to Mahatma...) Anyway.
     1. I wonder... why do so many people like Mr. Pants so much? I mean, just a little sketch of someone in his skivvies shouldn't be enough to promote such extreme fanaticism. Perhaps they are more interested in bugging you. Ah, well. C'est la vie.
     2. Banjo-Tooie- How come Chomposaurus doesn't have any stomach acid? If there were some, B-K would be mush in several seconds. This must make it very dificult for him to digest his prey. In fact, it would be impossible. And how come you can climb up his throat without him throwing up? Gag reflex should kick in you know...
     3. Easy one- In which Scribes was the reference to the Bursar made? I happen to be a large fan of Discworld.
     4. How does Woo Fak Fak shoot energy bolts at you so accurately when his eyes are closed? I would have thought sonar, but I can't hear any high pitched waves of sound...
     5. How can Mr. Patch blow himself up? It's theoretically impossible, for he would have to expel the air inside of him before taking another breath. Do you mean to tell me he holds his breath for the whole match? And is he related to Mr. Pants? (I couldn't resist, sorry.)
     6. Why does Grunty say "Grab my twinklies" at the start of the bumper car multi-player game? Is she requesting something?
     7. Do I irritate you with my constant barrage of impossible questions? (And did you catch the subtle Phule's Company reference at the top?)
     And now I'm done. I leave you in peace... until the next Scribes... MUhuhhahahahahahah! Etc.
     Flick "Monolith" Montana

1. I think the fact that he's so easy to redraw and reposition adds to the horrible RPA temptation lurking deep within everyone. Plus he's really stupid, and people like really stupid things.
     2. Shush.
     3. It was a front page ALT tag, something along the lines of "Rarewhere: The Unseen University Bursar of gaming sites". I'm still toying with the idea of a regular 'Identify The ALT Tag Quote' competition, hilariously entitled 'Text-in-Tag Tournament'. Do you see?
     4. Shush.
     5. I'm a bit worried that the rest of the game seems fine to you in terms of theoretical possibility.
     6. Are you suggesting that (s)he's a transvestite as well as a murderous undead witch?
     7. Not at all. And it doesn't seem so subtle when you specifically point it out to everyone.

Dear person who presides over this chaos:
     (After listening to the MP3 "Pooland" from Conker's Bad Fur Day)
     Oh my dear lord. I fear for all of humanity. Can't wait!
     I do have one small request. Since the site includes the section that covers Rare games that didn't quite make it out of development hell, is there any way you could stick Conker's sordid development story there? After all, it started out as the radically different Twelve Tales, and there are still a batch of nauseatingly cute screenshots from it floating around the net. That makes me curious: how was the decision made to turn it into something that makes South Park look like The Sound of Music? What was involved in mutating Twelve Tales into BFD? What sort of game was Twelve Tales going to be, aside from the kind that would require all of us to get insulin shots after playing it? Is Uncle Tusk the head producer of BFD, or what?
     Then again, if the story is too boring, or if the designers are sick of being asked, or even if you can't be buggered to go to the effort, you could always just make up a crap story for Scribes. You know, an epic battle between Mr. Pants and Tiptup in gigantic battle robots shaped like capybaras released dangerous amounts of Theta rays over Twycross that caused the once peaceful, Teletubbies-watching Twelve Tales designers to devolve into liquor swilling, arse-pinching boors, or something like that.
     May "poo" become the latest word letter-writers fixate on:

     Moribund the Burgermeister

Giant MechaPants Capybara Battle - I like it. It's been a while since we did a 2D fighter, but next time the opportunity arises, I'll be sure to have this idea close at hand.
     Conker's BFD is basically what our unstable British mentality and national toilet humour fetish would make of all our games if we didn't feel obliged to exercise a bit of restraint in the development process. The BFD team just decided to skip the restraint, I suppose. I'll see what I can pester out of them with regard to the Twelve Tales Limbo story...

Dear lovely groovy narwhales,

     I don't know much about British fads, but back a few years here in the States, something called "pog" was rather popular with the younger crowd. It was this game with circular pieces of cardboard, where you would make a stack of them and beat them with a large circular metal thing and they would fall over. I don't think I ever understood the rules fully. Anyway, as I was going through some deskdrawers, I happened across my collection of them. One of these I do believe you'll find quite funny, so I've attached it. That is all.
     Nick McWilliams

Yes, we do find it funny. What a remarkably shrewd judge of character you are, etc.
     We actually had some Killer Instinct pogs made a few years back, and ended up giving loads of them away in one of the earlier incarnations of Win Stuff. I never really understood them either.

Dear students,

     In responding to Megamanxxx's letter, BenjaminCJHu wrote that "objects still have inertia even if they're hovering. Inertia is dependent on mass, and the crate still has mass - what Megamanxxx meant to say was that the crate had no weight."
     No, I don't think so.
     The fact of the matter is, inertia is a fundamental property of matter; all matter has it. Mass is essentially a quantification of inertia. Thus, you cannot have one without the other. Weight is the quantification of the gravitational force that attracts an object to earth, which itself is equal to (mass) x (gravitional acceleration), or mg. The object must have mass, and thus it WILL be attracted to the earth, as all objects, no matter how small (mass-wise), attract all other objects. It will be attracted with a force equal to the weight (Force = ma, and g is an acceleration).
     The only way for the box to be floating is for there to be a force acting upward on the box which is equal to the gravitational force acting downward (make a free-body diagram if you need proof of this). As the box is hovering, we can also figure that this upward force is equal to the gravitational force JUST ABOVE the ground.
     Lastly, the same strange device that provides the upward force must also be able to adjust that force on the fly, as the box moves to different floors of the building and, as we all know, different altitudes mean different gravitational forces.
     I hope you people all study a bit harder next time. I'll see you in the test on Monday.
     The Buffaloon of Happiness

I never thought I'd see a letter in Scribes that I couldn't quite understand. Well, not for this reason, anyway.

Ay ay ay ay, moosey - here's some responses to that letter in the last edition of Scribes concerning Gruntilda's rhymes (or lack thereof) in the translated versions of Banjo-Kazooie...

Dear Leigh (it's getting personal...),

     I was reading your last edition of Scribes (minus anything Mr. Pants), and I noticed you didn't know exactly what happened to your precious rhymes in the European translations of Banjo-Kazooie. Well, I know what happened with the French translation, and yes, all the rhymes where translated and modified a bit to rhyme in Moliere's language. 'Huzzah' for my extraordinary knowledge of the French I guess.
     By the way, I have a question that has been itching me for quite a while: how did you end up managing Rare's site? You lost a bet or what?
     -- Olivier "Oddjob" Germain
     PS: 'I created Mr. Pants!' must be a terrific way to gain the ladies' attention in a pub, isn't it?

Dear Scribes,

     In the last edition of Scribes someone asked if Grunty's speech rhymes in other languages. Well, I've got a cartridge with French and German speech (next to English) and I watched the opening sequence in German and French, and they do rhyme! In French, it's natural speech (for a hag), but in German it gets kinda ridiculous ("Ich habe hier das schönste kopf" for those who speak a little German, that is just stupid). Well anyway, I also have a question: I live in Belgium, very close to the UK. Why don't Rare games come to the UK first? Banjo-Tooie is out in the US and (at the time I wrote this letter) still isn't out in Belgium? How comes?
     Thank you for your time,
     Trent Weston

Dear Scribes,

     BK's German translation features as many foolish rhymes as the English version does! Some of the overworld rhymes were not translated literally to preserve the humor. The editors also translated Grunty's story-rhymes without losing any kind of sense. And everything remained rhymed and humorous.
     Bye! ET was here! Cannot wait for Tooie!
     Enrico Tessmer

So there you have it. Full credit to Nintendo of Europe's translators for going out of their way to retain our stupid rhymes.
     The PAL versions of games take slightly longer because they first have to be converted from NTSC, then the various European translations have to be added (not applicable to the Australian version, which explains why Australia sometimes gets PAL copies before Europe), then it's a matter of the distributors in various parts of the world deciding when to release the game for maximum market impact. The Banjo-Tooie case is a bit extreme, we'll grant you.

Mr. Pants' Bad Pie Day Mk. IIDear Scribes,

     Let me start off by saying that I am well aware of how pathetic I am. Now that we got that out in the open, I will tell you that I have redone the boxart of the fictional game Mr. Pants' Bad Pie Day to reflect what the actual Conker's Bad Fur Day box looks like here in the US (the first boxart was in the 11 October 2000 edition of Scribes). It was one of those things I started and simply couldn't stop working on until it was done. I have an addiction. I am currently seeking help.
     Every time I have written and been published it has been Mr. Pants related, so now that I have gotten that part of my letter out of the way, I will move on to more serious matters. My query concerns the distance with which Conker is able to pee in Conker's Bad Fur Day. I have watched the clip of Conker chugging beer, thus filling his bladder, giving him fuel to p*ss out fire monsters, repeatedly. I have come to the conclusion that Conker's urine would simply not be able to travel that far; it is completely unrealistic. I have done field tests and I have only been able to pee about 2 meters (I may be American, but I still believe the metric system is far superior), or roughly my own height. Say what you will about my bladder, but Conker's pee flies at least 3-4 times his own height. There's no way a squirrel's bladder could be that powerful because they are not a species that mark their territory in that way, thus there is no need for it to be so. Rare, you have failed in accurately portraying the distance with which pee can fly, I am disappointed. On a positive note I am excited as heck for Conker's Bad Fur Day, and I've even made a website for it:
     <http://missionjfg.nshooters.com/conker> (NB: No longer active - Ed)
     Tom, Director - Mr. Pants' Bad Pie Day, webmaster - Mission: BFD

Nice. Is Mr. Pants supposed to be smoking a fag or just scratching his hairy belly? And where's Mrs. Pie's distinctive headwear? Other than those two niggles, it's criminally well done.
     We've also decided that you're right about the unconvincingly powerful nature of Conker's bladder, and as a result the game has been taken back to the drawing board for a thorough removal of all other such unrealistic representations. We expect it to come out in 2006 and be a single-level game about a digitally-reproduced squirrel collecting nuts in a park, the challenge lying in the fact that you can't stray too close to any people walking by in case you get a bit scared and run up a tree (game over).

Dear Scribes,

     Thanks for posting my little rhyme on Snippets. It took me some time to think of that. If you don't get my message, It was the "This is a snippet, E-mail will ship it, all the way to Twycross, blah blah blah." Anyway, Forever you shall address me as the "Rhyming Anon." It sounds cool. I shall put a rhyme in your E-mails. Mwa-ha-ha-HAAA!! Anyway, here I go:
     A merry worker for your studio
     Had something happen that was rude-e-o,
     He was eating food and Wheeeeeeeee!
     Mop shoved up arse and then "Breeeeeeeee!"
     -Rhyming Anon

Tennyson and Wordsworth, eat your hearts out. Try to restrain yourself from mailing us too frequently, though: genius strikes in unpredictable bursts, and besides, I don't think today's soft literary audience is ready to face this level of searing allegorical power on a regular basis.

Hey Rare,

     Don't believe it when people say your games are easy. They're full of S*&T. The people who say that are show-off kids who pretend to be king-s&#t. In actual fact, they have an incredibly hard time trying to finish your games just like the rest of us. PD's just one example. And it just doesn't become fun anymore. It starts becoming tedious.
     A good game, IMO, is one that doesn't go for too long. A GREAT example is Metal Gear Solid. Kojima stated in an interview that with MGS2, he was aiming for about 15 hours gameplay because he doesn't believe in long games. And it was at that point that I realised that this guy was a genius. I finished MGS in 14 hours, and I always thought, "Man, that was an awesome game. Plus, I'm just so good to have finished it so quickly!" but then I realised after reading Kojima's statements that he probably always intended the game to be only about 15 hours gameplay. And I had to say to myself, "The boy's a genius! Tedium begone!"
     So, why don't you do something like that?? Instead of aiming for hours and hours of gameplay by making up pick everything up, or making games unbearably hard, just make 'em easier. Trust me, it would make all your games much, much nicer in the end.
     Please don't believe stupid 9 year-old kids who say everything is easy. I read a comment on some message board somewhere that was talking about how 'not-hard' the Dark Bots are in PD. I mean, c'mon! The Dark Bots are impossible! It's these damn stupid lying kids who ruin everything. Please don't believe them. Please don't make your games to cater for them. They're full of it. Make your games easier.
     Joe F. Tangco

Optimum game length is entirely subjective - speaking for myself, I've just put 140 hours into FFVIII and enjoyed every minute of it. I don't think it matters how much time you spend playing as long as it never becomes a chore, and besides, a lot of people are limited in what they can buy and want to wring as much playing time out of each title as possible.
     As for our own games, rather than purposefully swing them towards either the easy or difficult end of the scale, we try to balance them so that they're accessible to people of all skill levels (hence the varying difficulty levels in PD, Mickey's Speedway etc., the optional 100%+ totals in the DKC games, and so on) - why constrain yourself to making either a 'hard' or an 'easy' game when you can have both?

My dearest bubblecakes,
     Playing through Banjo-Tooie, quite happy, and content. Saving Jinjos and talking to moles, and living life like I once did (with Banjo-Kazooie). It was nice, I was happy. Then I saved the bleedin' kids in Witchyworld, and much to my absolute shock there were Mrs. Boggy's breasts. My jaw dropped, as I thought of some poor sodding b*stard who had to program those oddly (in the most disturbing way) hypnotic mammaries. She ran off, and I found myself drained. Whose idea was that? It startled the hell out of me. Don't do that again, without warning, please. Thank you for your time.

You see, some people think you can't go wrong with grossly oversized female 'bits' in games, but they just haven't thought it through. Here's the designer to justify this particular hair-raising example:
     "Disturbing though it may sound, our artist took great care and attention to perfect what you saw. Even though in some people's eyes it's a 'crappy unoriginal sequel that's too big for me and has a dumb hillbilly bear in it', we like to think we can still surprise the great gamesplaying public occasionally."

My Dear Mr Loveday,

     I just don't know for certain, but I thought you'd be in a position to make sure:
     I seem to remember a very short-lived TV cartoon series based on "Atic Atac". I cannot find any reference to it on the net, and I've been looking for a good 10 minutes, but there's this nagging feeling I've got (and I haven't been near the sausages).
     If this is correct, then does that mean that in a former life, Rare made the first game to ever spin-off a cartoon series? I can't think of any that would have been earlier. (I do hope so - as I'm sure do you. It would mean that we've got you to thank for the televisual presence of such delights of puke-a-chu.)
     Sorry to ask a question that might cause you to do some work...
     Njoinit (several times a year)

     PS. Still love every Rarity. Out of desperation, I bought "Earthworm Jim" the other day (speaking of games to cartoons). Words fail me. Gestures with my arse are more appropriate.
     PPS. Can't wait till I'm "Conker's Deep".

I certainly don't remember an Atic Atac cartoon series, and neither does anybody else that I've asked, including one Mr. Christopher Stamper. That would sort of suggest that it's all in your head, you poor unhinged young fellow. Anyway, I wouldn't have thought you'd be able to get more than five minutes of material out of a bloke running round and round a bunch of eerily similar rooms shooting stuff. But I distinctly remember a Pacland cartoon, if that's any help...

Oh, my Dearest editor,

    This is a quiz that I would like you to answer as it will help guide my life. Here's the Setup:
     Back in '94, I had a SNES and a Game Boy. I loved Donkey Kong Country, but I didn't have the money to buy it. So I settled for Donkey Kong Land. This year Donkey Kong Country came out for Game Boy Color. I again was short on cash, so I sold some of my old games (Donkey Kong Land among them) to raise money to buy Donkey Kong Country. So, are you:
     A) Proud of me for buying two different Rareware games.
     B) Ashamed of me because to buy one great Rareware game I had to sell another.
     C) Ashamed of me because I never bought the SNES DKC in addition to these two.
     D) Ashamed of me because on that same trip I also bought PowerPuff Girls: Bad Mojo Jojo.
     E) Really don't care, because, despite the message of Pokemon 2000, one person really doesn't make much of a difference. Or...
     F) All of the above.
     Please give me your insightful answer so that I may get on with my pitiful little life secure in the knowledge that someone actually took a few moments to judge my actions and has formed some kind of an opinion concerning them. Sigh.
     Scott Lochmoeller, who once created a race of powerful robotic beings that were meant to serve mankind. However, they soon rose up in rebellion against me and began destroying portions of Mid Missouri. After narrowly escaping my own death, I rose from the rubble and defeated them. How did I defeat them? Why, it was simple. I merely turned them, heh heh... "off". Feel free to infer what I actually meant by that last statement. Pervert.

Are you finished? I suppose the answer would have to be A), as you've effectively demonstrated your loyalty in buying two Rare games, regardless of whether or not you sold on the first one. So I expect you'll be swelling with pride and a reinvigorated will to live right about now. That's nice.

Dear Rareware,
     I loved your game GoldenEye 007, but from what I hear at some 007 web-sites you guys have the original beta cartridge. They say there's only one though and that you're working on its bugs and glitches, to make it better. I'd like to know if this is true and if you're going to release the better beta version. The game was so realistic, but I think some parts needed to be worked on. I just wanted to know if this rumor is true and if you're working on a new version.
     The Rareware Fan and 007 Fan,
     ~ Matt

I... I, I mean, I... for God's sake...
     1. "You're working on its bugs and glitches, to make it better." Yes, we did that. That was called the 'development process'.
     2. "I'd like to know... if you're going to release the better beta version." Yes, we did that as well. Except it wasn't called the 'beta version' by the time we'd finished. It was called the 'final version'.
     Please, please try to get your head around this. It's not complicated.

Dear Salty Joe (hidden away in your deep, dank, cave-like fries stand),
     Zdravstvooytye! Thought I'd just drop in and annoy everyone with some incesssant babbling:
     (1) Will you consider making a Banjo-Salty Joe? I was appalled when Banjo turned him down >sniff<... that poor evil weasel guy! And anyway, that Greasy Hand Grab could be incredibly useful in that game.
     (2) Does Scribes really have that much power over Rareware as a whole? Huh? For in Mayahem Temple, at the letter board place that you can enter cheats into, the top line spells 'arse' backwards!!! Don't think that people don't notice those little things, you arse-addicted swine!
     (3) Despite the fact that July is months away, and also despite the fact that I am American, I'd like to point something out. Independence Day was a good thing for England. Think about it... If the U.S. had not rebelled, all Americans now would be Britons!!! And since our country is a lot bigger than yours, the average Briton in that future would have the manners and I.Q. of today's American! Bwa ha ha ha ha ha ha!!! So, we were just doing you a favor.
     (4) Can I have a dollar? Pleeeeeeeeeeeeease? Oh all right, I'll settle for a secret-filled Beta version of Goldeneye...
     (5) Okay, I'm running out of time, and you've probably cut me off anyway, so here's the good part: "The time has come," the Walrus said, "To talk of many things. Of shoes and ships and sealing wax, of cabbages, and kings. And why the sea is boiling hot, and whether pigs have wings." OK, whatever. Don't think I've forgotten about that dollar/beta copy!
     -Walrus McFish Sr., a.k.a. the Socktopus

1. Cue designer: "Who'd want to control a bad-tempered sweaty weasel that stinks of 'chips' (sorry, that's what fries are really called, but we knew we'd get loads of flak if we put that on his stand) and has suspiciously greasy hands? I wouldn't, that's for sure. I'd much rather control a dumb-sounding bear with tight shorts that likes to hit people with foul-mouthed chickens, oh yes."
     2. And again: "That's just the toned down version, it originally spelt out 'Banjo's a t*at'." (No it didn't. - The Management)
     3. But the country wouldn't be called Britain, so you'd probably still be known as Americans, and subsequently many a terrific jape would still be available at your expense.
     4. As you can see from Lightning Strike Matt's letter above, this still isn't something to joke about.
     5. Right... thanks.

Dear Scribes,

     I'm sorry, but this game just looks like a lame attempt to recapture some of the more mature gamers that have been lost over the years, and quite frankly, a bad one at that.
     The horrid, tacky and tasteless d*ck jokes insult the average adult's intelligence. This game reminds me of a 2nd grade kid who says a naughty word on the playground over and over. By the way, I've done a bit of extensive roaming around in various newsgroups and have found that the only gamers interested in this thing are mostly people UNDER 18. Have fun contributing to the delinquency of minors. They're absolutely PUMPED about this game, and can't wait to see huge brass testicles, or read and hear things like "F*ck" or "Sh*t". Sure it's getting an "M" rating, but who are you fooling? Not me. Sure, kids could and probably already have picked up on stuff like that, but that's not quite the point is it?
     You know, I thought you guys could do no wrong, with such an impressive past, but I thought Perfect Dark was starting to getting a touch gratuitous. Maybe it was the sales of that game that brought about something like this? How did Perfect Dark do, something like 600, 700,000? That's pretty small compared to GoldenEye.
     I wish you more great success in the future with the GameCube, but I sincerely hope the sh*t hits the fan with this Conker thing. Maybe you need a slap in the face. If you want to attract more mature gamers, try impressing us with something other than sexual innuendoes, flatulence and jokes about sexual organs. It's sad, really.
     You know what I would do? Something more like Perfect Dark with better level design without the lame, cliché story, or boring and sometimes irritating characters like Elvis. You HAD to have known that his voice acting was annoying.
     I'm sorry, but I HAD to vent. You always made great games, but this time, I personally think you messed up. If you make a ton of money off of Conker, that would be the only positive thing you'd gain on this venture, because people such as myself would only see it as taking the cheap and painless way out.
     Dennis Ferrand

Honestly. You'd swear we'd abandoned all development on other games, turned our backs on everyone under 18 and settled down to concentrate all our efforts on the Conker franchise. Ever heard of 'diversity'? Maybe 'catering for all tastes'? Everyone's entitled to their opinion, and you're clearly of the opinion that you don't want this game: that's fine. But everyone has an opinion, and therefore you don't speak for the entire gaming population of the world. If there wasn't an unsatisfied audience out there clamouring for this type of game, it'd never have been made.
     PD's sales figures were never going to reach the astronomical levels achieved by GoldenEye in the N64's prime, as its user base today is barely comparable. And of course we knew that the Mature tag would exclude a substantial percentage of buyers, but as we felt that it was necessary, we stuck with it at our own potential sales disadvantage rather than compromise the quality of the game or try to market it to unsuitable age groups, which kind of shoots your own 'lack of integrity'/'bandwagon-jumping' arguments out of the water. So yes, a point well made - thanks for bringing it up.
     By the way, I've played Conker's Bad Fur Day. I'm most assuredly not under 18. I think it's hilarious. Say what you like about my mentality, but it'd be a more 'mature' approach to reserve your judgement until you've actually played it - and maybe even respect the opinions of other people in the meantime.

Yo Skribes!

     How come the rendered Joanna Dark so different than her alter-ego in the game? Not only her hair-cut, but also her face is totally different. I have a possible explanation I'd like you to confirm: I noticed that the Joanna from the game has astounding similarities with the lead singer from the music band "Texas" Sharleen Spiteri. Just take a look a the picture attachments. Only a coincidence? Maybe the source of your inspiration would have been too obvious if you created a render entirely based on the N64 Joanna. That's why you changed it. Am I right?
     Which Joanna are you going to use in After Dark? Because, personally, I think that the rendered Joanna looks a lot like Vela and Juno. And this isn't meant to be a compliment. She would really have a lot of trouble to compete with other virtual pin ups. I'm not the only one who thinks so. Just do a poll and ask the gamers whether they want to keep one of the two Jo's, or if they want a new styled Jo (or even Velvet) with an entirely new look (and another face...)?

We would have had a good look at the attachments if you'd sent any. Yeah, I saw that Spiteri woman all done up in black leather on last week's Top of the Pops too... that hardly makes her the original JD model, though. Designer! Oi! Designer Boy!
     "The rendered model was styled to resemble the real-life model hired to portray Joanna Dark in the media advertisements. Both of these models were brought in after the NTSC and PAL versions were complete, so it was too late to restyle the in-game Joanna Dark model to fit in with them. Only the Japanese version, which was the last one to be approved due to the translation and font issues, has a different Joanna Dark model. The first Jo model was most assuredly not Sharleen Spiteri; I think you will find that they are both female and have short dark hair, but beyond that there is little resemblance.
     "IF we make a game called After Dark (I assume you're ham-handedly referring to a sequel to Perfect Dark), it is entirely possible that Joanna will be nowhere in it."
     And on that bombshell...

In Diddie Kong Racing how do you use bananas?

You have to hot swap them over from Mario Kart 64.

Did you know that if you took the 'a' out of Mickey Mouse Racing, you'd get Mickey Mouse Arseing? Ha Ha Ha. Think about it (r-cing). It's bloody hilarious.
M C Jefe

You must mean Mickey's Arsing Adventure... which is even better.

I was just in an IT lesson and thought I would draw Mr. Pants a woman. What do you think of her?
Mark Bace

Like any red-blooded male, I find her unaccountably alluring.

I am so in love with meatsim 5 I had an epileptic seisure.
A bloke named Bob the crazy lap dancer

Is that an advantage or disadvantage in your profession?

Smack me with a large trout, I've gone and printed every edition of Scribes. 417 pages, not including the RPAs (We're waiting for a colour printer).
-Amanda Marie Schroeder, a.k.a ¡Kablooie!, evil twin of Kazooie (Bwaa ha ha ha ha ha haaaaaaaaaaa!)

You meddle with forces you can't possibly hope to understand.

Have you decided on a better title for the game that takes place in Swaziland? If not, how about "Swaziland Game"? No offense, but "Swaziland 64" is just kind of weak.
Greg Zinn

How about Goggle-Eyed Swaziland Tiger Adventure?

I heard Mumbo didn't like Mr. Pants, and was seen applying for the role as the new Scribes mascot. Here is an absolutely not fake picture of his auditions.

Mr. Pants was never the Scribes mascot, hard as it is to believe.

My Gameboy Color is my best friend, and I wanted to know if I should consider buying Conker's Pocket Tales. Of course you'll say yes, you want the money. Or- maybe that's not how it works.

That's exactly how it works. Now buy the damn game.

Is Megamanxxx the host of a xxx site featuring the blue robot and his pals? This intrigues me. Please tell me the URL.
Jon Da Mon

I thought he'd just put some lovely kisses after his name...

Yo all the games, they phat, they tight, they copasetically constructed gems of complacency. Make a sequel to Jet Force Gemini, I don't care if you don't think it will do well. I'll cap you with my gat. Arse.

I'll cap you with my arse. Complacency indeed.

How come Mumbo's arse is big enough to fit a wand and several Glowbos, but not big enough for a Clockwork Kazooie to fit in?

His mastery of impulse clenching is unrivalled.

I've been playing and playing, and I've just gotta know... does the auto-aim feature in Perfect Dark always seem to go somewhere toward the crotch area, or is it just me?
Nicholas "Captain Spam" Killewald

Let's just say you must have that nickname for a reason...

I'm a l33t haXXor d00d5 - misrespect me and my ominous title of 'Cyber Warrior' at your own expense, I think you'll find.

I know a few hardened Cider Warriors. Any relation?

Is Mr. Pants' name Bob? That's a nice name. See, if he wanted to be hired at a gas station he just calls himself Bob, but if he wanted to get hired by Bill Gates, he calls himself Robert.

At the end of the day, though, his surname's still off-putting.

Please now inform me absolutely nothing about your upcoming Gamecube games, the state of Dinosaur Planet, and for some strange reason, the availability of coffee in your office. Instead, respond to this with the gross national income of Zimbabwe.
Connell Wood

Absolutely out of the question - that's classified.

Can I help Captain BlackEye? I feel sorry... for him... he has no chair... anymore... he gave me a doubloon... why is he so big?

Why are... you... talking like... William... Shatner?

I thought this would be appropriate for Perfect Dark. I found this quote scrawled on a desk at university in the city of Brisbane Australia:
"Poets have been suspiciously negligent on the subject of cheese" - G.K. Chesterton

Peter Wiseman

That's us - cheesy down to the very last man.

Think about an elephant. It is a large, grey, African elephant. It is walking across a small stream. Sitting on its back is Mr. Pants. Mr. Pants is playing a bright yellow kazoo. Now stop thinking about it! Stop it! Now!
P.S. Could you please put my letter last?

But it's a lovely image. PS - Not with this beauty still to come.

I can ask more but don't want to drill you so, am going to leave with a pleasant congratulation:

Xavi Espejo

Which sounds like a dire infertility curse if ever there was one.