Game inclusion in the DB

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#101 by gabezhul
2016-02-10 at 18:28
I'm fairly sure Abyssaleros was sarcastic there. :P
Probably, but either way, it was a golden opportunity for some stress-relief snarking.

As for GT, maybe it's just my memory failing me, but I really don't remember anyone really insisting on keeping it. Rather, to me it seemed like nobody really cared either way, so we just shrugged our shoulders and moved on.
#102 by warfoki
2016-02-10 at 18:50
Nobody insisted on it either way, true, but it was brought up very early on. Then one of the mods (maybe it was Echo, I really can't remember anymore) said that he likes the game, but if the others really insists, it can be deleted. As I've said nobody cared that much either way, so the thread just faded into obscurity.
#103 by jazz957
2016-02-10 at 18:58
This is the thread, right? link
#104 by warfoki
2016-02-10 at 19:41
One of them, yes.
#105 by ginseigou
2016-02-11 at 03:04
First of all, the game inclusion requirements were decided by mods, it's just their personal vision of what a visual novel should be. Japanese might as well not consider some games as visual novels that Western people do.

Requirements really contradict to each other:
Choices are the only allowed (but optional) form of interactivity. There are no other gameplay elements (including stats-based gameplay in dating/raising sims). Mini-games and simple mechanics, such as map-movenent, are only allowed when they play a very minimal role – at least 99% of the title should be made of pure reading.
Then it said that hybrid games are allowed.

Games like Melty Blood, BlazBlue, The Ar Tonélico series where the process is clearly shifted towards the gameplay are included just for far-fetched reasons like relations and adv segments that make about less than 20% of the game. Really, i could as well include any Fighting game with animated cgs and subtitles.

The Phoenix Wright series are more like a text adventure quest games.

There are old games that some consider forefathers of vns, but many games actually had adv segments - it was a popular style of narration for action games and rpgs too. Text quests might as well be included then.Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 07:38
#106 by dk382
2016-02-11 at 03:23
Pabloc wrote the current criteria and he's not a mod. We arrived at that criteria after an open discussion with the community. The thread was open for months and everyone was free to contribute their thoughts.

The requirements do not contradict each other. The way it's formatted is rather clear. There are two methods for judging inclusion, one for pure VNs, and one for hybrids, and it stands to reason that these two methods will have different criteria. That's not a contradiction.

The way I understand it, Melty Blood and BlazBlue have very significant VN segments that take up the majority of the game time in their story modes. Melty Blood isn't included for relations reasons. You keep bringing this up, but as far as I know there are no entries in the DB at all included for relations. If there are, then we should look at them and consider removing them, because being related to a VN isn't a good enough reason. Thankfully, Melty Blood and BlazBlue are already VN enough.Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 03:31
#107 by jazz957
2016-02-11 at 03:47
link Oh, look. It's already happening. >_>
#108 by megazerox
2016-02-11 at 03:52
Honestly, I think Long Live the Queen should go back up. It is a hybrid between a visual novel and a raising sim, since straight raising sims tend to not include dialogue.

Considering that its userbase tends to consider it a visual novel, it is tagged as a visual novel on Steam, approximately 70% of gameplay is reading, only 30% thinking about decisions, and it honestly probably contains at least 100,000 words among all splits in the paths, I think it should considered a VN.

Even if you don't believe it should considered a visual novel, the database should err on the side of inclusion. Considering Long Live the Queen is the most popular game tagged as a Visual Novel on Steam, it seriously impedes this site when users try to get more information about it only to find that it isn't on this site. Including it helps the site get more traffic, make the site more useful for current users, and gives everyone a general better site experience. Removing it doesn't help anyone.Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 03:59
#109 by gabezhul
2016-02-11 at 05:04
Honestly, I think Long Live the Queen should go back up. It is a hybrid between a visual novel and a raising sim, since straight raising sims tend to not include dialogue.
Read the thread before commenting. It is entirely about how we are tweaking the inclusion criteria, and LLTQ arguably didn't even fit our old one, let alone this one.

Considering that its userbase tends to consider it a visual novel
Argumentum and populum. If we listened to what the "userbase" (read: a vocal minority who are too invested in some titles) we would have to include every JRPG that use tachies in cutscenes into the DB, as most people seem to only look that deep.

it is tagged as a visual novel on Steam
Argument from authority, and a flimsy one at that. Steam tags are applied by users, and as I have mentioned before, most players have no idea about how to tell a VN apart from a telephone pole. Also, why would Steam's or any other site's tags mean anything to us? We have our criteria, it either fits or doesn't, what another site says means exactly diddly-squat in that process.

approximately 70% of gameplay is reading, only 30% thinking about decisions
That description goes head first against the descriptions of several other people in this thread. Also, what do you mean "the gameplay is reading"? Reading is not gameplay, it's *reading*.
Also, once again, *read the thread*. The new criteria means that we require hybrid VNs to have extensive narration and long, uninterrupted VN segments. This game doesn't fit either criteria.

and it honestly probably contains at least 100,000 words among all splits in the paths
So what? PS:T had a lot of words, but it's not a VN. Script size only matters when the hybrid in question has been already established to fit the rest of the criteria and we try to figure out the story/gameplay ratio, like in the case of Kamidori and other JRPGs with extensive VN segments. By itself it's a useless metric, as it doesn't tell you anything about whether it has narration or just dialog.

Even if you don't believe it should considered a visual novel, the database should err on the side of inclusion. Considering Long Live the Queen is the most popular game tagged as a Visual Novel on Steam, it seriously impedes this site when users try to get more information about it only to find that it isn't on this site.
At this point you are just regurgitating your failed arguments. It is not our fault Steam users tagged this game as a VN when it is a raising sim because they don't know the difference. It is not our fault that the game doesn't fit our criteria, and we are not obliged to keep it just because it's popular.
Also, how does not having something in a DB that doesn't belong there "impede" it? Does not having Persona 4 also impede the site? Seriously, did you even think this through? That's like saying that not having a car in a motorcycle database is impeding it. It might be a great car, but it's not a bloody motorcycle and has no reason to be there!

Including it helps the site get more traffic,
We don't do ads and click-whoring, so the amount of traffic the site gets is pretty much irrelevant. What we do care about is utility, and having things that don't belong here is more important to that than how many clicks we get a month.

make the site more useful for current users
Yes, keeping a game in a specialized database that doesn't belong in that database will make the site more useful for the users. We should also add a roller-skate into that motorcycle database too, if we are at it. It would totally help the users.[/sarcasm]

and gives everyone a general better site experience. Removing it doesn't help anyone.
Who is this "everyone"? And yes, removing helps someone: us, the staff, as it is one less foot in the door that idiots who are too lazy to read the guidelines can point at when they try to get their pet games into a DB where they don't belong.
And yes, this is a thing. If I had one cent every time someone argued for including a completely unfitting game into the DB by pointing at PW or any other borderline title, I would be rich.

If anything, your comments makes me want to radicalize and remove every hybrid from the DB just so that simpletons like you would have to ground to stand on.

Speaking of which, are we still afraid of the backlash removing the Phoenix Wright games would cause, or can we finally get rid of them? It would be about high time.
#110 by jazz957
2016-02-11 at 05:46
Speaking of which, are we still afraid of the backlash removing the Phoenix Wright games would cause, or can we finally get rid of them? It would be about high time.

I mean, I like them, but that's obviously not a valid reason. I would be a little sad to see them go, but I wouldn't be angry about it, because that's dumb. And I know how difficult it is to come up with concise guidelines so that we don't have idiots adding whatever they feel like. But, I don't know if other people will be so rational about it, unfortunately.Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 05:48
#111 by megazerox
2016-02-11 at 05:47
Read the thread before commenting. It is entirely about how we are tweaking the inclusion criteria, and LLTQ arguably didn't even fit our old one, let alone this one.

Obviously I'm raising a complaint with the criteria. Yes, I realize that there was a discussion that spanned multiple months. However, the majority of the users of the site don't pay attention to the discussion boards. The site is mainly used by people that want to find good visual novels and compare and contrast what they like. Most users probably aren't in favor of removing anything.

Argumentum and populum.

Argumentum ad populum is perfectly valid when it comes to definitions. What a word means comes from the culture it exists in. It doesn't matter when an English major says that "myriad of ways" isn't proper use of the word "myriad." That usage is popular, and popular use defines a word or concept. Some people might think that visual novels should include grahpic novels, like comic books and manga. However, because the common use of the term doesn't mean that, it isn't correct.

Yes, keeping a game in a specialized database that doesn't belong in that database will make the site more useful for the users. We should also add a roller-skate into that motorcycle database too, if we are at it. It would totally help the users.[/sarcasm]

Strawman and False Analogy. I'm not saying to add bikes or anything far out. No one considers a bike a visual novel. If you really want utility like you said, then you'd keep it in. In this case, including hybrids is more helpful for those who want it than not including them for those who don't. If 30% of the community want a particular VN in, I'd say that it would be best as the site as a utility to keep it.

Who is this "everyone"? And yes, removing helps someone: us, the staff, as it is one less foot in the door that idiots who are too lazy to read the guidelines can point at when they try to get their pet games into a DB where they don't belong.

This isn't going to help this in any way. It will still happen, only with more titles removed there will be more arguing and more headaches. People will try to resubmit removed games and cause more and more headaches for the moderating staff.

If anything, your comments makes me want to radicalize and remove every hybrid from the DB just so that simpletons like you would have to ground to stand on.

Nice ad hominem.

Speaking of which, are we still afraid of the backlash removing the Phoenix Wright games would cause, or can we finally get rid of them? It would be about high time.

Only if you want to rename the site to "visual novels that the mods like database." Seriously. Definitions are cultural. I could say that everyone is wrong in using "the," as it should be written "ye." But as it turns out, culture has changed on me and I can't do that. I would be considered wrong, even though with the previous definition I held on to, I was correct.

Err on inclusive. If 30% of the world who uses the word visual novel defines something as such, then it should be grounds for a database of said things to include it.Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 05:52
#112 by [deleted]
2016-02-11 at 06:08
(horrible idea incoming)
post a link to this thread on the steam forums and fill this thread with the fans of LLtQ so there can be a testcase for the wright games, to see how annoying a fanbase can be, though LLtQ might not be popular enough


:this post brought to you by cant get to sleep:Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 06:11
#113 by jazz957
2016-02-11 at 06:11
I can just see this thread getting linked on reddit. :P
#114 by beliar
2016-02-11 at 07:02
Err on inclusive.
We ARE erring on the inclusive. There are plenty of fringe games on the DB that can only be called VNs if you squint very hard. However, notice that this discussion, which is in its fifth page only resulted in the removal of two games. And both of these games didn't fit our previous criteria, not to mention the current one. We are't removing games that are hybrids or that are "disliked by mods". We are simply purging the entries that should have been removed years ago. LLTQ and Gadget Trial only stayed here because no one cared enough to finally get around to removing them.
#115 by takata
2016-02-11 at 10:37
I never understood the really hard push to remove Gyakuten Saiban... It's a unique case, but I think it's just borderline as opposed to definitely-out-of-place.

+ favors keeping GS
- favors removing GS
* Elaboration


+Menu choices are almost the only form of interaction for Gyakuten Saiban.
*Ex. pressing testimony, presenting evidence, selecting where to go, selecting conversation topics.

-Choices are more game-like than those in other VNs
*In Galaxy Angel, it's fairly obvious what each choice does to the story, so there's no game there. In Fate/stay night, it's impossible to determine what some choices do, so there's no game there either. But with GS, there's a game built around using logic and reasoning to pick the choices that win you the game. You could argue that the choices are a bit like an RPG battle menu, as opposed to a choice that decides which branch of the story you read next.

+Choices are not as game-like as RPG battle menus.
*When you present a piece of evidence, it directly affects the story. The judge may react negatively if it's wrong, or the witness may react very negatively if it's right. When you hit an enemy in an RPG, 99.99% of the time, it has no effect on the story.

-In the investigation segments, you will frequently have to examine the whole background. This definitely exceeds the level of interactivity permitted in pure VNs.


+The text tells a story, and you will spend almost all of your time reading it, as opposed to running around an environment, or fighting enemies.

-There's a game built around reading the text closely in order to know which choices to make.
*To make an analogy, the text in most VNs is like card lore text, while in Phoenix Wright, the text edges towards card effect text.


I find it odd that something with seperate VN and game segments like Ar Tonelico gets into vndb. ...but graft the VN and game together seamlessly like in Phoenix Wright, and it supposedly shouldn't get into vndb. O.o?
#116 by palas
2016-02-11 at 13:58
Well, I'm obviously with megazerox here. I've heard that the whole point on being so strict about the definitions is to keep JRPGs from coming in. Well, LLtQ has VN elements, is made by a company that constantly puts out VNs (so it's not as if the ADV style is there coincidentally; Hanako Games put it there on purpose because it is a VN element), is seen as a VN by people who are new to all the VN stuff (and who might come here looking for it)... and doesn't set a grave precedent for a flood of unwanted genres. What point is there in removing it?

What is there to protect? If there WAS an aprioristic definition of VNs we wouldn't even have this discussion. Are VNs so weak a medium that we have to purge everything that strays from the textbook example (which we don't even have, as far as I know) so that we don't lose sight of what a VN is?

And want it or not, LLtQ is an example of how VNs are (successfully) developing in the West. If you're keeping the forefathers, keeping the offpsring is more than fair. To delete it is to favour a very specific aesthetic, not a medium. In fact, to consider a VN a "thing on its own" (which I believe to be the single cause for all this mess) would *require* vndb to be much more inclusive.Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 14:00
#117 by ginseigou
2016-02-11 at 14:41
Maybe all hybrids with less than ~70% vn segments should be removed entirely so to not repeat this kind of discussions again and again? I just want the rules to be more consistent without flimsy excuses for hybrids, either ban blatant examples where the gameplay is the most important part or allow all the hybrid games.Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 14:57
#118 by bunnyadvocate
2016-02-11 at 15:14
I'm in complete agreement with megazerox. In gabezhul's dismissal of popular opinion as "Argumentum ad populum" he shows what this is *really* about, keeping VNDB as gabezhul's personal database of games he likes (see his defense of the inclusion of Ar Tonelico, a JPRPG he personally likes). Unfortunately for gabe, there is no Académie française in English, words are defined by popular usage, not an incestuous clique.

He's currently manifesting the very worst of geek culture, the need to exclude the other, the unclean masses (or "clean" masses in this case), from his little hobby. He is the mirror image of the idiots on steam who get worked up over VNs or "walking simulators" being sold on Steam because "OMG, they're not games!" (i.e. they aren't games that appeal to *me*).

Beliar tries to defend all this with the cry that they've only removed 2 games, but this actually makes it so much worse as it shows this process isn't being applied fairly. Surely even beliar must admit that there are hundreds of VNs currently in the database with a worse gameplay-story ratio than LLTQ, and yet they haven't been removed. Why is that? Well it's because LLTQ caters to an audience that don't spend their days in the damp basement of the vndb discussion forums. It's an OELVN, it doesn't have h-scenes, and it doesn't cater to horny guys; hence there's no one here to defend it.

This whole attempt to keep the database "pure," to exclude, is quite a disgusting spectacle.
#119 by palas
2016-02-11 at 15:34
Now, let's not resort to vicious personal attack. It makes any possibility of agreement much harder.
#120 by bunnyadvocate
2016-02-11 at 15:42
Don't worry, it's for gabe's benefit. Now he can look out his dictionary of fallacies, cry "ad hominem," and not actually address anything.
#121 by [deleted]
2016-02-11 at 16:22
Surely even beliar must admit that there are hundreds of VNs currently in the database with a worse gameplay-story ratio than LLTQ, and yet they haven't been removed.

Please point them out so we can remove them, then, or at least include them in this discussion.
#122 by beliar
2016-02-11 at 16:30
You know... if there are games with a worse gameplay/story ratio than LLTQ, then they are definitely no VNs.

And no one's trying to keep the database "pure". We are no Nazis and this is not the Final Solution. However, this is not Wild West either. Every single game with vague VN-like characteristics is not welcome here. And Bunny Lawyer, you need to check your attitude at the door if you expect us to pay any attention to you.
#123 by [deleted]
2016-02-11 at 16:35
@118 To address the rest of your comment:
gabezhul defended Ar Tonelico by explaining how it fits the guidelines. beliar deleted LLTQ after explaining why it doesn't fit the guidelines. Your defense of including LLTQ in the database is claiming that the only possible reason for its deletion is that people hate all-ages OELVNs aimed at a female audience.

Speaking for myself, I'm female, I fucking love OELVNs, and while I would agree with palas that LLTQ is an example of how visual novels are developing in the west, I also agree with beliar (based on my 10 or so hours playing the game) that it's really a text-heavy raising sim. So, uh, ad hominem me, bro.Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 16:36
#124 by palas
2016-02-11 at 16:42
"Gameplay/story ratio" seems like an incredibly hazy way to delete or keep games. In LLtQ you definitely spend more time reading than choosing what to do for the next week - more time than True Love, I'd say - and it seems to be the wonkiest task ever to determine a "ratio" as if the two didn't interact - worse, as if they couldn't be the very same thing. The entire Other Gameplay Elements tag group would have to be under suspiscion.

Not to mention prestigious and important games for the genre, like Psychonauts and Snatcher, would probably have to go too. And that's even without mentioning just how much games in these suspiscious categories don't have screenshots to dismiss or back up arguments for their deletion. Could we then simply start creating entries for hybrid VNs and never really posting screenshots on their pages (or only the adequate screenshots) so as not to invoke almighty vndb rage on them?
#125 by ginseigou
2016-02-11 at 16:43
Please point them out so we can remove them, then, or at least include them in this discussion.
I think he talks about Digital: A Love Story, Tales of Aravorn: Seasons Of The Wolf for example that were mentioned in this thread.

Games like Snatcher should go. It's really more a quest than a vn, The creator himself did not position it as a vn.Last modified on 2016-02-11 at 16:56

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