ITEM: My sometime partner-in-blogging Elliot's visual novel project continues to progress in fits and starts. While at this point it's nearly as oft-delayed as the "Acceleration Stage" edition of Bliss Stage, what I have seen of the latest efforts seem to be moving in some good directions. And, like nearly everyone in Indie-Stuff-Land today, they have a Kickstarter to help push them to the next phase. The team was recently interviewed about the project by MiniEnt, and shared some tantalizing new bits of art & design from the project.
ITEM: In tangentially-related roleplaying game news, Cel*Style, the publishing collaborative that Jake Richmond and friends put together to design and market Japanese-media-influenced roleplaying games, has been on a tear lately, releasing some fab new games. I just got my copies a couple weeks ago, and all three have us eager to try them out. Once we do, look for reviews here! In the meantime, the quick-and-dirty summary:
Panty Explosion Perfect: A completely revised and revamped version of the one and only psychic schoolgirl roleplaying game, it uses a unique Best Friends & Rivals resolution system to deliver character-driven tales of schoolyard maymhem & mystery. The closest media reference in my mind are exploitation horror films like the Eko Eko Azarak series, but another great one from more recent times is the Occult Academy anime from last year.
GxB: Girl vs Boy. Isn't that what romance is all about? A sweet and simple game of shoujo-style romance, in which shy Momoko is wooed by three very different suitors as complications ensue. Playable in just an hour or so, it's perfect for people who might never have taken an interest in roleplaying games before.
The Tulip Academy's Society for Dangerous Gentlemen: a fanciful and freewheeling game of fabulous young men having fabulous adventures at a fabulous (and incredibly exclusive) private school. Perfect for stories in the vein of Ouran High School Host Club, Revolutionary Girl Utena, or (the one I immediately thought of) Hayate the Combat Butler.
ITEM: In other Cel*Style news, there have been some hints that a certain long-awaited title may be forthcoming from them in the near future. I'm not holding my breath, but I'm confident that if it pans out it'll be worth the wait.
ITEM: In other long-delayed quasi-Lovecraftian giant robot games news, the US edition of beloved-but-weird Nitro+ eroge Zanma Taisei Demonbane has finally arrived! Just got mine, but likely won't get a chance to play much of it until later this month. As with the pen-and-paper games mentioned above, I'll review it as soon as I have completed a route or two. It's not exactly a Bliss Stage-like game, but I expect I am not the only person reading this site for whom it is relevant to their interests.