39 Comments
Posted by ChrisTaran

Going to listen to this soon, but I have my doubts that the aim of a dating sim for everyone is even logistically possible.

Edited by PeteyCoco

So many dump trucks!

Edited by tildebees

will this sell to my piss fetish though???

Posted by DeadpanCakes

Sounds right up my alley.

Posted by dudeglove

Klepek sounds freezing cold at the start.

Edited by Redhotchilimist

Why would a dating sim reach a wider audience by having characters with no gender, one of which is an AI? I guess the people that can't stand anime will have a better time and people are expected to fill in the gaps for themselves? I understand the part about saving time, though.

What he describes sounds pretty interesting, but it doesn't sound at all like a dating sim until halfway into the interview. Like, it would help if he said _something_ about that part of it. What I'm imagining at this point from what little he said is that it is just a normal visual novel kind of thing, with a single love interest/path, only all retro pixel art and American science fiction tropes instead of japanese high school anime ones. I don't think that's worth talking around. Maybe it would be easier to imagine if I knew what Home was and knew his style. Or if he used any examples that were dating sims instead of Mass Effect or Persona, that are more RPGs with the option to have light conversations with and "date" your party members on the side. Could be a cool story, mind! I appreciate the interview, for letting me know a little about it.

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Posted by taig

I don't mean to be crude, but this better have hardcore sex in it.

Posted by JimiPeppr

Don't you dare demean my relationship with Chie.

Posted by Dougie_Com

Everything about this interests me.

Edited by metalsnakezero

This is interesting and as some who plays Dating sims and visual novels for how interesting the narrative is it can be a bit hard to get in to since many of them up front look like just made for males or don't show how they work to be interesting. Persona works with the visual novels mechanics but it is designed with a make character. This could work.

Posted by Dark_Lord_Spam

@redhotchilimist: I think it's great that these are structured more as conversations than focused interviews. It allows the devs to be more honest about their intentions than they might if they put on a salesmanship hat.

Posted by Max_Cherry

Can this teach me to love?

Posted by Vuud

But is it fun? Shouldn't games be fun?

I keep asking myself this over and over as GDC rolls on this week.

I'm not picking on this game in particular.

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Posted by AlexanderSheen

The game sounds interesting. The thing that I like the most they talked about is the unsurfaced progress in your relationship with the AI, that you don't have to think or worry about whether you made the "right choice" or not.

Don't you dare demean my relationship with Chie.

That's what Jeff said.

Also, don't you dare demean my relationship with Naoto.

Posted by dr_mantas

Whatever.

Edited by Chicken008

Was this recorded inside an elevator?

Edited by VarkhanMB

Really excited to listen to this!

Posted by metalsnakezero

@jimipeppr said:

Don't you dare demean my relationship with Chie.

That's what Jeff said.

Also, don't you dare demean my relationship with Naoto.

Ditto.

Edited by 1101101

@vuud:

But is it fun? Shouldn’t games be fun?

Let’s unpack that question. Why are you saying that games should be fun? I would certainly argue that games their creators intend to be fun should be fun. I would also argue that it often makes sense for certain themes (e.g. being a badass superhero) to be presented in a fun game, though I don’t think there are any hard and fast rules for this. Maybe a non-fun game about being a badass superhero could be extremely interesting, but I have no doubt that pulling a game like that off would be extremely difficult and limiting.

It’s pretty much exactly as with all other media. There is certainly no one who demands that all novels or all films must be fun. Fun novels and films are arguably much more popular than non-fun ones, but I’m not sure anyone would seriously argue that all novels and films should be fun.

Posted by dr_mantas

@1101101: At least for me, a game being fun has always been deeply associated with the enjoyment of playing it. Games are different from other media because of the way we consume them - they are inherently interactive, so the gameplay, whatever it may be, is integral to the experience.

Now there are movies that are hard to watch, because of content (A Serbian Film comes to mind) or maybe quality of filming (some indy stuff) or various reasons, and novels that are hard to read maybe because they are written in a certain style, or also because of content. They make up a minority of their respective mediums, and it's usually done specifically to invoke certain responses.

Games having tedious or uninteresting gameplay would, in my opinion, be understood as "not fun".

Of course, this is all subjective. For example, while Papers, Please was considered by some to have boring gameplay as a way of translating the mundanity of day to day work at a border checkpoint, I found the game pretty fun. As a time pressured picture hunt sort of thing with some adventure game thrown in.

To sum up, a game can be considered not fun (to play), but that's not bad. If it's done for a purpose, and someones derives enjoyment out of it, all the better.

Edited by TDot

On fun: To sum up what some people are saying, games have to at least be engaging.

Edited by 1101101

@dr_mantas: I think you misunderstood me. A novel or film being not fun most certainly doesn’t imply that it is hard to follow or boring or unconventional. Tragedies are extremely common in novels and films. It’s pretty standard fare. Tragedies are certainly not supposed to be fun (i.e. associated with feelings of joy and happiness), at least not predominantly, but that doesn’t make them boring or hard to follow. They are all about creating empathy with the characters (feeling their pain and suffering) and about tension and suspense.

That’s what I was talking about, not films with bad cinematography or a confused script. Why shouldn’t games be able to achieve the same thing, both through the story they tell and how their mechanics fit together with that story?

I think you are confusing good game mechanics (they feel right and satisfactory, there are no stumbling blocks and they fit the story the game wants to tell – if it does want to tell a story, not every game does or has to) with fun game mechanics (joyful or happiness creating game mechanics). I don’t think they are the same and I don’t think every game needs the second kind of game mechanics.

I would even argue that the feeling of tension and suspense is extremely widespread in game mechanics – so why is no one asking whether games are tense?

I think it’s a misleading and loaded question. In general there is only a need to ask whether game mechanics and story (if one exists) are good, not whether they are specifically fun or tense or shocking or whatever else. That only comes into the picture when you are more specifically talking about what game mechanics (fun or tense or shocking or …) fit a specific game.

Posted by teaoverlord

I kinda like reading the books in Elder Scrolls games...

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Posted by aceofspudz

A dating sim for a different but still very niche audience.

Posted by CatsAkimbo

I'm really interested to see if he can actually pull this off. My impression is that dating sims are primarily about "characters," and the story between the characters. I'm just not sure how possible it is to make a real character with depth while leaving such a big part ambiguous. My initial reaction is that the characters would just be bland and it'd end up feeling emotionless.

Still, crazier things have worked, so hopefully he figures it out.

Edited by Sooty

I always think of this quote when I am reminded that the dating genre is one some people solely play:

Raylan Givens: I once met a man who made model reconstructions of famous aviation disasters.

Art Mullen: Hmph.

Raylan Givens: Tenerife. Sioux City. Lockerbie. Scaled down fusilages blackened and torn. Little engines and furrowed earth. I don't know. I figure people are entitled to their hobbies and I'm entitled to think those people are creepy.

Posted by cthomer5000

Going to listen to this soon, but I have my doubts that the aim of a dating sim for everyone is even logistically possible.

Or reasonable. Clicking play now.

Edited by cthomer5000

@vuud said:

But is it fun? Shouldn't games be fun?

Not necessarily. This is a terrible premise for approaching any artistic medium.

It should affect you. Like any movie/tv show, song, or book does.

Posted by Videogamer07

@vuud said:

But is it fun? Shouldn't games be fun?

Not necessarily. This is a terrible premise for approaching any artistic medium.

It should affect you. Like any movie/tv show, song, or book does.

I'm genuinely curious now: Name several games that aren't necessarily fun, but are still good (besides Papers, Please).

Edited by FluxWaveZ

Patrick tries to sound like an expert on Japanese text-based video games, but he name-drops three games that are made by the exact same dev. team (999, VLR, DR). Kinda weird to be making generalizations for all of them when you've only experienced a very small amount made by the same people.

I find it hard to take any of their discussion or criticism seriously when both Patrick and Benjamin sound as though they actually lack knowledge on what "dating sims" truly are. How is it helpful to use Mass Effect or Persona as examples when those games are not dating sims?

Edited by Neonie

@fluxwavez: Because neither of them could even be bothered to play Katawan Shoujo much less Little Busters, Fate/Stay Night or anything of the sort to even maybe try and figure out "Oh, actually all these eroge don't tell the same story and actually exist almost souly FOR their story."

Edited by TessaWracked

I'm really excited to play this. I haven't played many dating sims, but I don't think this Benjamin's trying to reinvent the genre, but perhaps make it accessible to people who wouldn't be interested otherwise.

I'm also pretty happy to hear him speak about the ambiguous gender of the man character. If a character is specifically written to be male, female or anything else, that's fine, however they player character's gender generally has no impact on video game stories.

I play as dudes with full helmets/armor when I can't change my gender in-game or when the male character option is uninteresting. There's nothing wrong with playing as another gender, but when it's meaningless to the experience, I'd rather see it through a character I can embody just a little bit more.

I still have to play Home!