A Double News Announcement

Heya, readers. Two things I want to talk to you about.

One: those of you that have been with Ninja Blues for a while now are probably wondering what the deal is with the next Jarenth Plays. I had so much vim going after wrapping up Starships in July. “Please yell at me if I haven’t delivered anything end-of-August”, does that ring any bells? And now it’s November, and still nothing has materialized. What’s the deal with that, self? What happened?

And the honest answer is… I don’t really know?

No, but seriously. There’s a bunch of factors I could blame: work, bad luck, a sudden influx of social obligations. But I think the actual main cause here is that I’m hitting some weird kind of motivational writer’s block. I have plenty ideas for Let’s Plays, dozens of them, complete materials for two, and even a handful of draft episodes for the one I’m currently ‘working on’. But for some reason… I’m just not making any writing progress. I find myself reluctant to just sit down and write, and whatever I do put out comes at a glacial pace.

It’s a strange sensation to me. Doubly so because it’s not universal; the Indie Wonderland train is happily rolling along every week.

I don’t really want to make any more (hollow) promises, but I will say this: I’m totally intending to kick the LP writing into high gear this November. If at all possible. We’ll see if my brain cooperates. I’ll definitely have more free time this month, so maybe I’ll be able to guilt-coerce myself with that.

Which neatly leads to to thing number…

Two: it’s November again! And do you guys remember what happened last November? I certainly do. If you do too, you’re probably grinning with schadenfreude-delight right now. And if not, maybe all you need is a little refresher course

That’s right! It’s time for another Visual Novels And Dating Sims month! Or however long I can stand the concept this time around.

Now, I’ve actually been planning the games I want to play this time. There’s so much possibility. I jokingly said I’d play Fate/Stay Night last year, so that’s technically still an option… but a friend — an actual friend, not you lot of vultures — dissuaded me from that. Another idea I had was maybe looking at some more VN sequels: I know WORLD END ECONOMiCA has a second episode on Steam now, and harem drama slash tactical space battler Sunrider: Mask of Arcadius earlier this year had a frankly bizarre-seeming high school spinoff — the same characters, the same relations, but now they’re students instead of mech pilots. Even discounting my thoroughly miserable experience with the former, this could probably be interesting.

But here’s the thing: of all my 2014 VNADS reviews, one game rocketed to prominence in a way I’d never have expected — and that no other game quite managed to match. I don’t know if it was my writing, the generous amount of anime nudity, or the fact that the game had a strangely prominent place in public consciousness for a while (let’s be real, though, it was probably the boobs). But whatever the case, where once my most popular piece was hard-working Factorio, it now is… that game.

I wasn’t the only one who noticed its popularity. Over the course of 2015, developer Sekai Project put out no less than six new games in the same… I hesitate to say ‘series’, but they definitely all have the same basic concept.

And because they couldn’t leave well enough alone, neither can I. I am first and foremost an entertainer, after all, and every entertainer knows the golden rule: ‘give the audience what they want’. And the Ninja Blues audience has spoken. So it is with heavy heart that I announce here, that tomorrow marks the official start of Visual Novels And Dating Sims II.

Sakura Harder.


  1. It’s really been a year since then? Wow, time really does go.

    Solstice, the next visual novel from the makers of Cinders was feature complete and started beta-testing at the start of October and finished it this week, sadly they don’t have a release date yet. It looks like they don’t want to get flattened by Fallout or the Steam christmas sale

  2. Cool, I think I’m fully recovered from the last VNADS. I’m glad you cover games I’d never think of playing, even if I’m not expecting to discover my next favourite game amongst them. They’re still fun to read about.

    I’m also glad that the Factorio piece has done well, as it’s a great game. You may have been a tad optimistic when you stated that it appeared to be complete, though – development is chugging along nicely, but your piece will probably be two years old before it officially releases. :)

  3. Oh any intentions to do the Starcraft visual novel? It’s meant to be pretty good (that’s a visual novel about pro-starcraft players, not about the game itself)

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