I was just reading an interview for Kouryuu from Mangagamer, and I have to say that I’m quite curious about the “4 others” that he has mentioned. I have yet to play any Mangagamer game (either the game’s a nukige, I’ve already played it, or the art has me feeling very hesitant, like Kirakira, BTW, I place Koihime Musou in the nukige and bad art department), but I do find the 4 unnamed games interesting. I mean, since he didn’t mention D.C.II, 2 of the four could very well be D.C.II and some other Da Capo fandisc, but even so that would mean 2 new VNs which might be Steins;Gate or something equally epic (and improbably, I know). Hints have been coming out for a few days now, but so far, no one seems to have any idea what the new game is.
“Let’s not talk about me for now.”
She was smiling.
Normally, we could reconcile at this point, but… this smile was entirely different from what I was used to.
It was the way a doll smiles.
It was the mask she wore when I first saw her.
What makes this even harder is that fact that, unlike the case with the D.C.II announcement, a few lines are released, the removed. Each clue seems to be hinting at different things (for instance, the above clue feels like Ef to me), but I don’t know if anyone actually saved copies of the previous clues. This also makes me wonder. Considering how there wasn’t enough money for Koihime to be voiced, is there enough capital to be sure that those 4 games are actually going to be released?
I have to point out, though, that the rest of the interview was also very interesting. For instance, Oretsuba was brought up.
<Kouryuu> like, a lot of the members in this crowd who ask us for 俺達には翼はない (Oretachi ni Tsubasa wa Nai) don’t necessarily want that specific game
<Kouryuu> they want the next game made by the people who made Shuffle
<Aaerul> but oretachi IS Navel’s next game,
<Kouryuu> but they know nothing about oretachi other than it’s Navel’s
<Kouryuu> and that’s all that matters to them
Sadly, I can’t help but agree with that.
A lot of the titles that are being recommended by people are what I would call “generic titles”. This is the Shuffle essence plus, the Kanon, the Fate/Stay night. I wouldn’t say that they are bad titles at all, but rather that as far as I can tell, the fanbase already knows pretty much all there is to the games. It’s my opinion that a series that already has a fan translation will have a worse chance of selling with an official translation. I know that I won’t be buying D.C.II if it comes out. Not that I think supporting the market is a bad thing, but I’ve already spent money and played another translation, and I’m just not rich or reckless enough to pay for it. A similar idea goes to those with anime adaptions. Frankly, from personal experience, I don’t think the extra material in the Clannad game is worth the money if the buyer has already seen the anime, even if it wasn’t bad. This also applies to Air and Kanon, and Ef.
A comment on the interview by Anemoscope pretty much sums up my views on judging based on company association:
“I am just amused that the people who like Shuffle! would like to buy Oretsuba. I mean, that’s like an Anne Rice fan saying he’s going to watch Murnau’s Nosferatu because it’s about a vampire too!”
Of course, seeing the state of the market, it’s ridiculous to expect fans to not connect titles like that. But I’m worried that this is going to make the market more stagnant than it already is. I have no problems with Oretsuba, but most brand based fandom, especially in the English VN community, will support a title without taking into consideration its actual quality. For instance, School is well known in the English community. But it’s because it’s a gimmick and there’s anime of it. Even if its plot is different from the anime (and it probably is), even if the soundtrack, art, and system are all mediocre. People will remember “nice boat”. I know that School days would definitely sell if it were brought over and translated into English, but it doesn’t feel like it will improve the quality of the market. The same can be said for Shuffle -essence plus- and the rest of its spin-offs, H2o, and Little Busters.
In the end, I’m selfish, I suppose. All of this is just my opinion, after all. I’m biased against some titles, I want the energy to be put into other titles than translating them, and I admit that.
Anyway, tl;dr: can’t wait to see what mangagamer’s putting out next, hope it’s something that no one’s expecting.
Update: It’s Ef… hmm… I’m kind a happy that my gut was right, but at the same time… hmm…I dunno. The production values are there, the publicity is there, but as for actual quality of content… Personally, when I saw the anime, I thought that it was a big step up from the first tale (which didn’t impress me at all). On the other hand, I liked the Latter tale, and for some reason or another the anime lampshaded Mizuki’s past. Well, it was just short on explanations overall, but I liked the changes that were made to the story. Well, at least this’ll be good for the community.