OELVN related crap that pisses me off (part 3)

Part 1 can be found here.
Part 2 can be found here.


First projects bigger than Katawa Shoujo

WTF are you doing? Even in the extremely remote chance you’ll actually finish it, how long do you expect to take?

9001 endings, 42 love interests

The number of endings doesn’t mean dick — it’s really fucking easy to add a million endings, but it doesn’t mean anything. Having a ridiculous amount of endings doesn’t improve your VN, it only makes it really hard to find the non-shit ones. The same goes for the number of romanceable characters — the number means nothing.

Recruitment fail

Hai gaiz imma writin a vn wit ma friends and the plot is finished we just need 4 artists, 2 programmers, a composer and three writers. Who the fuck are you and why should I care? Don’t expect people to join your project without any creative input, and especially not if you’re some faceless scrub on the internet who has never created anything before.

Sabotaging the engine to make it ‘harder’

Be it disabling saving, or limiting/disabling rollback in the case of Ren’Py. Are you being an asshole to your players/readers on purpose? I don’t really see the benefit in trying to piss them off. It’s especially hilarious when rollback is broken so it doesn’t roll back part choices, yet the save system is left untouched. What’s the point then if you can still do the exact same thing (change your choice), just in a lightly more involved way?

Making a visual novel ‘hard’ in the first place

Why? Just why? And even if you do decide to be a silly, silly man and make a ‘hard’ visual novel how do you plan to do so? Any attempts I’ve seen just lead to completely arbitrary winning conditions. Protip: it’s not a game if you don’t explain the rules. Trial and error: fuck you.

Writing actions inside spoken words

Hank: “Words words words (eats sausage) words words words”. It’s not too common, but I find it extremely annoying to read. Actions and spoken words should not be mixed like this.

Using the Ren’Py default save screen

The default in-game menus for Ren’Py aren’t very good, especially the save/load screens.

Not only is the actually useful content smushed into the top half of the screen for no reason, consistency is hard to find. Buttons and tabs look identical and are freely intermixed. The page title — the only significant difference between the save and load screens — is indicated by a subtle color change of the text on a small button located in the bottom right. Information should always be presented in read-order, especially the most important information on the page probably shouldn’t be hidden away in a corner. The help button is especially bad as well. It opens an external web browser without any warning beforehand, throwing you out of fullscreen mode in the process.

8 thoughts on “OELVN related crap that pisses me off (part 3)

    • That’s your problem. You’re supposed to “read” them, not “see” them.

      Joke aside, the problem with OELVN is that everyone will hate works by people they don’t fancy, even if they are decent. That applies to myself as well.

      • I wish people didn’t think that way and actually tried to remain neutral when reviewing OELVNs.

        Though I guess no bias in journalism is a pipe dream.

    Does this apply to all first projects or just first public projects with other ones finished but unreleased to others?

    Motherfucking this goddamn. The fastest way to piss people off is for there to be no save feature in a VN.

    I slightly disagree with the Ren’Py save menu, mostly because I think it is convenient, if boring. (And who doesn’t love having 80 save files? I love having 80 save files. It means I probably won’t accidentally save over something I wanted to keep.) Granted, I do like it when people put EFFORT into making it look different.

      Primarily people who have no idea what they’re getting into. If someone willingly starts a 2 year project and is actually motivated enough to finish it — that’s a different story.

      >I slightly disagree with the Ren’Py save menu, mostly because I think it is convenient, if boring.
      I have no problem with the functionality but it’s awful from a HCI point of view — completely inconsistent and illogical.

  2. For the recruitment ‘fail’ issue, could you elaborate? I know there’s the tendency to have an ‘idea guy’ who does nothing and wants to start a project, but what about writing a script and then recruiting people once you’ve proven you can get some work done?

    I’m thinking in terms of artists, musicians, etc. being rightfully skeptical about joining a project with a writer who might turn out to be a lazy jerk, but at the same time having a finished story would drastically reduce the amount of creative input the other team members get.

    • The best thing you can do is to have finished another project on your own — that proves you’re capable of staying motivated and being productive.

      The creative part is the fun part, implementation is long and boring. Trying to recruit people after (most of) the script has been written means their role is more akin to hired help — not nearly as appealing as being co-creator.

      I may write a more in-depth post about recruitment later.

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