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Male Audiences

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Post by Akuni on 25/12/13, 01:28 am

I don't think I'm the only person who's heard this before, but a lot of the guys I talk to (who are basically fifa, cod, mortal combat, halo type players) aren't too open on the 'otome' gaming experience. They describe it as 'girly.' :[

And while I am a bit inclined to agree, I'm sure there are other non-romance or BxG gaming experiences that might appeal to them, then its 'Too much reading; not enough action' which then makes it 'girly'  Very Mad 

I don't argue but since I started writing and drafting up my own games I'm wondering what could make the visual novel experience more attractive to a "Male" audience, or is it that its solely a matter of preference?

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Post by celasvictoria on 25/12/13, 03:12 am

Well, I started playing Visual Novels(eventually otome games) because of a guy, but I do have a friend who is kind of prejudiced about them. Everytime I'm on the internet while I'm in my University and I'm seeing some otome game related website, and he happens to see me, he always says: Stop with this gay stuff  shocked 

And he also says that visual novels are "retarded"

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Post by The_Cat_Lady on 25/12/13, 12:37 pm

I'd say it's a matter of preference - I have male friends,who read VNs from time to time,while my female friends don't, because there's too much reading.  Laughing dududu

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Post by Akuni on 25/12/13, 09:26 pm

celasvictoria wrote:...I do have a friend who is kind of prejudiced about them. Everytime I'm on the internet while I'm in my University and I'm seeing some otome game related website, and he happens to see me, he always says: Stop with this gay stuff  shocked 

And he also says that visual novels are "retarded"

Sigh the frustration >:C I just want a wider demographic of players :c

The_Cat_Lady wrote:I'd say it's a matter of preference - I have male friends,who read VNs from time to time,while my female friends don't, because there's too much reading.  Laughing dududu

Well that's something, I wonder what could make it more appealing? more pictures, less reading? More "action sequences" idk?

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Post by aliceweis on 26/12/13, 04:04 am

i guess guys prefer more action, ones like hiiro no kakera 

and the plots is important too, my older brother play otome games after he saw me playing it, but he would pick ones that have a good storyline and such

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Post by Laramie Castiel on 26/12/13, 08:22 pm

If we're just talking why the majority of male visual novel readers do not play or have an interest in otome games, I think it's not too much of a mystery. Male readers of our age group tend to not care for romance being the chief aspect of a VN's plot- they seem to care more about the general plot outside of the objective/significance in ending up with a love interest. Alternatively, they care mostly about its sexual aspects.

I'm not saying female readers don't care about the sexual aspects or the general plot, I'm just saying that female readers tend to place more significance in the romancing and interactions with the love interests. Put simply, love and romance.

It could be that more male readers are playing otome games than most of us would predict... Not only is the romance genre seen as a "very female thing", but on top of that, otome games have significance in becoming lovers with (most of the time) a male character. Most of us would know by now how many (I stress; many, not all) men feel about anything that could potentially make them mistaken as a gay man. I mean, playing a game marketed towards young women and being a female character romancing a dude... IF THAT'S NOT GAY AS A RAINBOW, WHAT IS?! /sarcasm

If I were to start with recommending an otome game to a skeptical male VN reader, I'd choose Black Wolves Saga: Bloody Nightmare, since the emphasis is more on the general plot than on romancing its heroes. Also, Koezaru wa Akai Hana (R18+) has a further signficance on its general plot as well, though the romance is just as important. If they're up for a bit of "crazy", then Heartful Kareshi is a good choice as it definitely wouldn't be considered your typical otome game.

In general, otome games are not a good place to look for less significant romance, heavier plot titles. If they're willing to try visual novels, but are put off by the "romancing" aspects, they should stick to games by companies like Nitro+, LiarSoft, raiLsoft and TypeMoon, all of which have titles that place a lot of importance on its premise/plot/overall story, with romance having varying degrees of significance.

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Post by Guest on 27/12/13, 06:22 am

@celasvictoria, @Akuni *face palm* I think it's bull when people look down on guys for playing otome games..maybe some see the romance in otome games boring while others find it more intriguing playing a game with a more sexual plot (sometimes but not always). i really don't think that's right to look down on others, anyone should be able to have fun playing otome games without being judged/bothered, everyone has a different taste and opinion in/on VN/otome games. i must say (although otome means maiden in Japanese). Suggestions:  you could put the story in a more B&G route rather than GxB or you could have a multiple choice route game where you could pick being a guy or girl and have both a GxB route and a BxG route. so the games unisex. if you are aiming towards guys ONLY you could focus on CG emotion rather than writing because it seems in most cases (although its personal preference) that guys are more intrigued by the CGs and a story where you have the chance to be masculine and have special moments with the girl then to be reading mushy gushy lovey dovey text see what i mean?. have fun creating and never let anyone stop you from otome gaming if it's something you love smile

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Post by Akuni on 27/12/13, 06:44 pm

Hmm those are nice suggestions @Otaku17

And I get what you're saying @Larmie, seeing as you've been around this circuit a while. I notice that even general visual novels (like visual novels that don't centre around romance or VNs that are based off animes) don't have as wide a market as one would expect, especially outside of Japan. but it looks like that's a different topic.

In making visual novels catered to both a male and female audience what are some things that should be considered? The level of action, style of writing, lots of sexy eroge pics?? Maybe I should hold a survey

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Post by Laramie Castiel on 28/12/13, 05:34 am

Akuni wrote:In making visual novels catered to both a male and female audience what are some things that should be considered? The level of action, style of writing, lots of sexy eroge pics?? Maybe I should hold a survey

First and foremost, the plot should be the most significant aspect of the VN, I think. If you think about what VNs that are unisexually have in common, the common traits I tend to find are 1), the plot being the most important element of the VN, and 2), romancing being nonexistant or non-important. Fate/stay night, Ever17, Steins;Gate, Higurashi no Naku Koro ni and Umineko no Naku Koro ni are examples of this. Yes, some of these do contain romance and romancing, but still, the plots of these games still are the most important part.

With action, I would just leave it out altogether because not many people expect gameplay when picking up a visual novel. Yes, you do see quite a few eroge with RPG elements, but why bother? It's just better to pick up a game made by RPG "specialists", since they do that gameplay aspect much, much better. Also, since VNs sell themselves on high replay value and gameplay can be very time-consuming, in my opinion, it's not a very good mix. Who wants to do the same gameplay elements for every route? If you make it so that the gameplay skippable, why include it in the first place?

For writing style, I find that this doesn't matter too much. Just stay away from the usual pitfalls like purple prose, cliches, pretense and pointless/obscure references. If you're writing about a niche that is known for its jargon, it's best to just not include the jargon altogether. If you insist, try including an in-game terminology dictionary or manipulate the narrative so that they can be explained.

If you want to include sex, this is where it gets difficult. Many female readers don't like the "in-your-face" style of H-scenes typical in many male-oriented eroge, and many male audiences don't find the "softness" of a typical female-oriented eroge to be satisfying enough. It also depends on your goal of the sex scenes. If it's to titillate, trying to please both genders and all sexualities would be hard. If your aim is to make it a storytelling/plot point, then how erotic it should be typically does not matter.

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Post by kyrie on 28/12/13, 05:44 am

My boyfriend has played several otome games of mine, some of which he enjoyed. He really liked Scheherazade and Sweet Fuse, which are both games that are heavy in plot and fun dialogue. He also found Hatoful Boyfriend hilarious. He's more of a typical guy gamer in that he mostly plays Dota2 and only plays VNs if I make him lol.

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Post by Kouryuu on 02/01/14, 05:09 am

..Well. I have a few friends who prefer male focused novels like Fate/Stay Night..and they are guys. But yeah. I think those type of games is what guys look for in this industry. That or they secretly being tsundere and denying they like the otome games. XD

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Post by Akuni on 01/08/14, 01:46 am

So I noticed that a lot of popular let's players have occasionally slipped in a VN or two. But GameGrumps started up Sakura Spirit which is from the same makers of Pyrite Heart. 


To be honest I cannot stop laughing at the whole ordeal, but its interesting reading the comments below on the critique of the game itself and the genre on a whole (I'm assuming there mostly male opinions)

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Post by kyuuichii on 01/08/14, 11:06 am

I know about VN's from my boyfriend, and he'd play lot of them. Then I learned about otome game. At first, he refused to play otoge, and I can persuade him to play TMGS 3 on psp (yay) He said TMGS3 is more simulation than otoge so he went to play it :D
For now, he only want to play otoge that have English patch >_<;

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I remembered, when I read The World God Only Knows, Keima said he hate otoge but in the end he addicted to it hahaha :D

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Post by Akuni on 01/08/14, 11:57 pm

^TWGOK Got me into VN/Otome games too ^^)/

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Post by kyuuichii on 02/08/14, 01:32 pm

Another fan of TWGOK~ I'm only read the manga from Shogakukan monthly magazine which published at my country >_<; and hope to watch the anime if it interesting (I haven't check the anime version of it :3)

hee~ then, how it makes you like otome game?

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Post by Akuni on 05/08/14, 04:45 am

It was from TWGOK that I found out about Otome gaming and everything just blew up from there @_@)/ forums are these are a great lurking place and you get to read stuff from veterans and popular otome bloggers~~  ^^)/ I hope I can be legit one day B[

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Post by futurakaiser on 06/08/14, 04:37 pm

Hmmm about this issue, once in a while my male friends do listen to me about the games, but they often can't take it due to the fact that VNs are kinda boring. They don't find the concept of otome games boring, just that VNs get boring since it's really just loads of text. My male friends also sometimes look at the game for the art since they're often interested in digital art styles and everything.

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Post by fairth on 27/08/14, 12:04 am

I have a male friend who plays Otome Games.
Since Hakuouki, he became an Okita fangirl (Yeah Fangirl suits him better)

Mind you he's straight, but likes to go after virtual guys I guess ? xD

(I still find it weird in a good way)

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Post by The_Cat_Lady on 27/08/14, 12:14 am

fairth wrote:(I still find it weird in a good way)
I also think it's weird in a good way xD

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Post by ranimanga on 01/09/14, 10:33 pm

I don't talk to anyone about otome-gaming because I don't think they'd understand. Most people think visual novels are manga and such...Also many people think otome-games are very erotic, so I don't want to seem weird~. Bert sweating

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Post by ShikaSS on 02/09/14, 07:51 am

I have a very strange outlook on otoges and what makes me like playing them, so I'll refrain from making personal remarks.

The most obvious issue is the objective of the game: dating a man. Guys just feel uncomfortable with the idea, I guess.

It's really a matter of personal tastes. There are guys that don't appreciate reading that much or prefer plot development, gameplay mechanics and action, and guys who enjoy the romance.
Of course the prejudice has also a big part on this, but that's not something one can control, is it.

Anyway, if you're creating a otoge and want to attract male audiences to it, I think you should include mechanics of an action game, cool soundtrack and art, an appealing heroine and an engaging adventurous plot, with as much romance as you fancy but with different kinds of love in each route. For example, on one route, the romance would be very passionate and daring, on another, innocent and dramatic... You see?


I don't think I'm expressing myself as well as I desired to, but I think a good example of what I'm trying to say would be Hakuoki: Warriors of the Shinsengumi? And maybe Trigger Kiss?

I hope you took something out of what I said.Bleh

Oh, and a yuri route might also help Judging you

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Post by kyuuichii on 02/09/14, 01:03 pm

ShikaSS wrote:Anyway, if you're creating a otoge and want to attract male audiences to it, I think you should include mechanics of an action game, cool soundtrack and art, an appealing heroine and an engaging adventurous plot, with as much romance as you fancy but with different kinds of love in each route.

Yes, my boyfriend also said this to me, that's why he willing to play TMGS3. He loves the simulation and raising status concept of the game :D

about yuri route, you can get one in Gekka Ryouran Romance :D
I'm also loves yuri, but I dislike yuri routes on otoge sad

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Post by ShikaSS on 02/09/14, 02:04 pm

Yes, it was Gekka Ryouran Romance that reminded me of that.

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Post by Ace of Hearts on 20/09/14, 11:31 pm

I think it helps to look at the kind of games that are already out there drawing in many girls and guys. Those games tend to have a good story whether there is romance or not. As long as you have a solid plot with interesting twists and turns you can put all kinds of romance in it without having to worry about whether guys will play it or not.

There are always going to be people who don't want to read all the text. VN and otome games just aren't made for them. However the people who do like reading will be drawn into a good story. I really don't think gender is an issue there.

Quite honestly, even though I'm female I don't like otome games that are just romance with a loose plot either. I'm with the guys in that I need something bigger going on. The larger encompassing plot should be what is bringing these characters together. At least that is how I feel about it.

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