In response to "Pills Here!" from The Escapist forums:
It's kind of noteworthy that Dungeons & Dragons, which introduced the concept of an abstract health meter/hit points, did have a table for the side effects of mixing magic potions since at least the late 1970s. And also noteworthy for how many DMs ignored it, if they even remembered it existed.
Healing is just another of those concepts like hunger, exhaustion, carrying capacity (in terms of weight, not number of objects) that is glossed over and abstracted by most games in the name of expediency. And usually for the better. Do you really want to go to the washroom in a game, The Sims notwithstanding?
See you just explained why Fallout: New Vegas confused me. I am encouraged to get high as a kite on all kinds of varying medication and the only drawback is a chance of addiction.
However there is actually a quest in the game where one option is to kill the NPC by spiking his supply of Jet with some Psycho. This causes him to die immediately on taking some. You character previously even says to the quest giver (if your medicine skill is high enough) that a little bit of psycho added to the guy's jet stash is fatal.
I stood over his corpse and tried the exact same thing to see what would happen (possibly not too bright here I know) and I didn't even get addicted to the stuff.
In response to "The Princess Problem" from The Escapist forums:
The irony of using Sheik as an example of 'Strong Princess' is that, the MOMENT Sheik gets revealed as Zelda, the MOMENT she takes off her guise as a strong dispenser of teleportation songs....
...she gets kidnapped and you have to go rescue her. The very moment the 'man clothes' come off... she's now an object to be rescued as a SIDE-EFFECT of the main quest which is already established by that point.
Let's be absolutely clear about Ocarina of Time. Your quest is to lock Ganandorf into the Golden Land so that he stops being mean to Hyrule. You have the stakes for the adventure set clearly for you; the world is dying because Ganundorf is a jerk. You can see the ruination and decay in the land, because you're not just looking at pictures of it or being told... you are SHOWN the results of Ganondorf's evil. This is an example of how to set the stage right.
How does Shiek add to this by being the princess, and getting kidnapped? It serves no purpose other than to say 'It's legend of zelda, and zelda's gotta get in some peril cause that's how we do things in Hyrule!'
Sheik ain't the subversion of this trope! She's a card carrying exemplar of it, who exists solely to lure you into a false sense of 'it's not rescue the princess time' until... oh yeah, it is.
Contrast that with Twilight Princess. Forget Midna. Take Zelda herself in that. She's sitting there, in her sword and armor, fighting to the last until evil has assailed her castle, and she makes a sacrifice to preserve her kingdom's future. She's not some MacGuffin who sits there waiting to be rescued... she's a fighter who, defeated, makes the complex choice to subject her people to the Twilight so that they can survive in limbo, in the hopes that someone can rescue them, rather than succumb her people ti extinction.
THAT is not a 'princess peach.' That's a queen making a desperate sacrifice, and shows a strength of character and leadership.
That said, Princess Ashe from ff12 is a great example of a princess who is far from helpless.