Survey for my thesis! (About visual novel games)

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#1 by celes91
2020-03-12 at 16:17
Hello, I need a favor. I’m going to graduate and I have to write a thesis on visual novel games.
Please, can you fill this survey?
link
Thank you in advanceLast modified on 2020-03-12 at 16:17
#2 by lucumo
2020-03-12 at 17:09
Filled it out but meh, didn't like the survey. At least I gave you some pointers regarding why VNs aren't "popular" outside Japan (despite this not really being the case anymore).
#3 by gerasama-knight
2020-03-12 at 19:41
Done. Hope it helps
#4 by barfboy
2020-03-12 at 19:52
I finished it but you have an assumption that is incorrect. VNs are gaining popularity a lot in the west. Nekopara was so successful in the west that English fans helped fund an anime
link
They even had the creators thank the English fans for it being successful.

Also western fans are pushing the popularity of VNs so much that games are now coming out in multiple languages right from the start.
Oshi no Love yori Koi no Love
and Japanese companies have now gotten into the translation business
Your Diary

So saying 'why aren't VNs popular outside Japan' is a bit silly at this point. I put all that in your notes in case you read it.
#5 by kratoscar2008
2020-03-12 at 19:59
There.
Considering that most VNs fail to sell in the west I think OP is right. Just because they are more popular than before doesn't make them popular as mostly meme games are the ones that flourish . Specially when dwindling sales in Japan are a bigger reason as to why devs are looking at the west.
#6 by eacil
2020-03-12 at 20:17
You forgot romance, number one genre featured in VN. Or you thought dating sim was a better replacement for VN, which is not.
#7 by rampaa
2020-03-12 at 22:08
and Japanese companies have now gotten into the translation business
Your Diary
r58188 says it's a machine translation (wish we had a flag for that), does that count as getting into translation business?Last modified on 2020-03-12 at 22:09
#8 by kiru
2020-03-12 at 23:23
I don't even think you can consider VNs popular in Japan, with how the Industry struggles. Not surprising to me, given the horrendous 10k yen prices for a new game. Who the heck would get interested in a medium that way? Back in the day much more affordable doujin works made it big. Doesn't exist anymore. Abhorrent prices don't fix that.


As for the west, VNs aren't popular either. At least not those, that "should be".
Popular is: Memes, Short works, Ero.
Unpopular is: Pretty much anything attempting to tell a story and doesn't have a recognizable brand thanks to anime or whatever.

It's obviously very generalized, but you can more or less take that as how it is.
#9 by skorpiondeath
2020-03-12 at 23:26
So saying 'why aren't VNs popular outside Japan' is a bit silly at this point. I put all that in your notes in case you read it.
I'm with kratoscar2008 with this since most VNs fail to sell in the west. We are comparing world sales against Japan sales. Picking country by country comparisons I don't think we can call most VN popular.
In my country VN are not popular but nowadays even reading books is less and less popular too.Last modified on 2020-03-12 at 23:29
#10 by fllthdcrb
2020-03-13 at 00:46
You forgot romance, number one genre featured in VN. Or you thought dating sim was a better replacement for VN, which is not.
I think OP might be making the common mistake of conflating the term "dating sim" with the whole romance genre. I've always understood dating sims to be games where you manage activities, dates, etc., and your character has stats like in an RPG. This is certainly the definition VNDB uses (Dating Simulation).Last modified on 2020-03-13 at 00:50
#11 by kratoscar2008
2020-03-13 at 01:34
#10 and you would be right.
In my experience playing some (Tokimemo 4 and Mitsumete Knight) I can safely say that. In most of those they offer a character customization of sorts (Name, blood type, birthday, stats) and you are given a lot of of things to do (Manage stamina, build stats, earn money, take girls on dates on several locations, give gifts, if you are interacting with many girls make sure you dont ignore a girl long enough that she starts to hate you, meet characters/events based on season or date, etc) and may even have some minigames (In those aforementioned games include also RPG battle elements). In those games choices are mainly to build a relationship while in VNs choices are flags that you have to flip in order to get a girl, if you fail a choice in a DS the only effect is wether the girl love increases/decreases while in VNs it means you get locked out of a route. Also dating sims usually lack character routes as the game ends with the MC and Heroine confessing their love so you can date all the girls until the last ingame date while VNs have character routes. Dating Sims are largely dead which saddens me.

Im reminded of watching those JAST pages having dating sim as a tag and none of them where accurate.
#12 by behappyeveryday
2020-03-15 at 15:10
@2 If we compare the popularity of visual novels to the popularity of conventional novel or anime or even manga then no, they are NOT popular, at all. Especially if we talk about plot-heavy visual novels and not some lighthearted nukiges like nekopara or meme-generators like dlcl.

@8 Yeah, it isn't like visual novels are very popular in the Japan, either. As a writer, you will have better chances with web/light novels.
#13 by butterflygrrl
2020-03-15 at 17:05
>If we compare the popularity of visual novels to the popularity of conventional novel

do you know what the sales figures of average novels are?

cause... many authors would love to have vn sales figures.
#14 by celes91
2020-03-23 at 17:23
Hello, it's me again. I'm having problems with this thesis because my professor can't help me at all (he doesn't know anything about this.) and maybe I’ve been stuck in the house for two weeks (because of the virus, I have to stay in quarantine until 3 April) and I’m starting to get a bit demotivated. Also is a very niche topic and I don’t find many sources of information about it. I didn’t know about the low popularity of visual novels in Japan, for example. Do you have any articles about this? I think that there are cases of vn pretty popular in the West but it's a bit rare case, and usually this happens when the vn inspired an anime (like Fate, Clannad, Steins;Gate, etc..) or has an official localization (Ace Attorney) but that's my though, I can't prove it.


I base the thesis on a theory, my theory that in visual novels there is the impression of being able to control the plot as you like but in reality it is the author of the game that does it. The author wants to lead you on a precise path. But I only have few example of this in mind, for example in Doki Doki literacture club (you can choose a girl to "save" but in the end Monika messes everything up). In general, where do you find "official" information (articles, reviews, other) about visual novels?Last modified on 2020-03-23 at 19:15
#15 by skorpiondeath
2020-03-23 at 17:33
Celes91 can you please use spoilers tag? I know that Doki Doki literacture club is something mostly here have read but anyway please be considerate when spoilering VNs.

Anyway talking Doki Doki literacture club as an example of traditional VN will just be misleading, that's one of a kind and its fame was practically due to being unique.
Actually is more common the opposite you control the plot, otherwise where is the fun?Last modified on 2020-03-23 at 17:34
#16 by fllthdcrb
2020-03-24 at 01:48
Well, the developer is really ultimately in control in most cases. Even in the VNs with highly branching plots, everything that can possibly happen has already been planned out and written, and the reader just gets to choose which of those already created paths to follow. Even in most video games these days, even though the player's actions might be free *on a small scale*, on the larger scale, what happens is usually pre-determined whenever there is some sort of story involved, because it's really difficult to create something where the player truly makes their own story, while keeping the story coherent. Interactive fiction may have tried to do this sometimes, but the more open-ended ones are more like RPGs, I think.

The freer the player's actions, the less coherent the story tends to be. Can this be overcome? Who knows? I imagine it would take some really clever design, a really good AI, etc., to accomplish. But that's beyond what any VN (to my knowledge) currently even tries to do. And I'm pretty sure most of us prefer a decent story in a VN rather than being able to do whatever.Last modified on 2020-03-24 at 01:50
#17 by skorpiondeath
2020-03-24 at 01:58
Yes I have written plot but I meant routes and ending choice. Obviously the plot has already been already planned by author in advance, but highly branching plots (well written not random meaningless choices) give us a sense of freedom wich ofc its limited but that I personally enjoy. In that sense is less freedom than most RPG games but readed gets channeled through important events.
Then nukige exist where most of the time choices are just an excuse to reach different sexual scenes, or kinetic novel where reader doesn't get the ability to choose.Last modified on 2020-03-24 at 02:02
#18 by fuukanou
2020-03-24 at 02:15
idk who thinks that they actually have any control in visual novels.

There's some dude who isn't getting paid enough writing them. They're not going to put in huge numbers of variations for every single scene that not every reader will find, just maybe a scene or two different (most cases maybe 10-15 lines tops) before either hitting a bad ending or linking back up to the main plot. Expecting anything more just means you know very little about the genre.

Choices are by and large just tools for selecting a heroine (after which it's linear) and for h-scene options.
#19 by guimigli
2020-03-24 at 03:54
@14
Yeah OP, you probably won't have any luck finding reliable information about VN sales numbers or anything official about VN's in English. Hope someone links you somewhere, but I don't think you'll have any luck.

About the theme of your thesis: Well, considering Dating Sims or VN's where choices should matter, I don't think anyone really thinks "Yeah, I'm in control of this character and this scene. It will progress as I want it to". Even in DS's, when you're playing and making choices, you constantly know that you're following a route that the writer have set for you, you just make the choice of which path you want to choose in this particular gameplay.

It is that knowledge that makes people replay Visual Novels, because they want to see every available path of the story, so they can experience the work as a whole. You would have to be as naive as a seven year old to really think that what happens in a VN is absolutely up to you.
#20 by bobjr2000
2020-03-24 at 03:55
#13 just to play devils advocate would argue its harder to write a ok novel vs a ok vn. Most crap novels will never take off or even know it exist. But plenty of crap vn self publish could still reach more people being more easily accessible.
#21 by skorpiondeath
2020-03-24 at 08:51
Citing Doki Doki literacture club is not a good example in my opinion you can have big plot twists even reading books if a plot twist alone is used as an excuse to tell you got zero control on the narration than I don't agree. There are many cases where that doesn't happen or at least you got many endings where your choices can have an impact.
I'll rather use netorare VN as an example where sometime you got the useless choice to choose if get netorared or not. In case you choose the netorare route than VN continues otherwise it just abrubtly shuts down.
Probably fuukanou is right and most of the dudes aren't getting paid enough and companies are more concerned on cutting down costs by producing more while investing less and quality suffers. But since market is over-saturated with similar titles companies do what they got to do to avoid closing down.
In the last two decades that happened in video game industry too, yes they choosed different options starting from having DLC, paying for resources or uinique gear, P2W etc...Last modified on 2020-03-24 at 08:53
#22 by zakashi
2020-03-25 at 03:47
Hey, post what are people's age on average that you're getting in this survey, I'm curious to know that :)

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