I’m here to make a confession today: I love otome games.
Fine, if you read this site I’ll admit you’ve probably already figured that out by my series “Let’s Get it On,” but I’m mentioning this specifically because it’s super nerdy. Plus, although I sneer at my friend’s romance novels, I really have no room to talk here in my glass house. [Ed.: anyone who says they don’t live in a pink-tinted glass house of smut is lying or deluded, or perhaps just lives a sad, sad life (unless you’re asexual, you’re perfect and we heart you too)—official G-vesc position on romance ♥]
Otome games are also sometimes called dating sims and generally fall into the visual novel category. Visual novels tend to be extremely story-driven with the outcomes determined by the choices you make along a branching story route. Dating sims often have you scheduling your character’s time in order to raise specific stats by doing certain activities. While all three terms are often used interchangeably (by me at least), my definitions overlap more like rectangles and squares: all the otome games I’ve played are visual novels, but not all are dating sims.
As a quick peek at Wikipedia shows us, otome games are literally “girl games.” They’re aimed at a female audience and are evidently a fairly new genre. They’re most popular in Japan, but from what my personal anec-data show me, the genre is quickly gaining a bit of traction in the U.S. as well, and is especially popular with indie creators. I could go on with the stats, both real and imagined, but seriously just go read that article. It’s short and actually pretty interesting. Continue reading 5 Otome Games You Need to Check Out→
Earlier this week I had a girls night with one of my closest, straightest female friends. And like most times she and I are hanging out in a private-ish space stocked with a copious amount of wine, the conversation eventually turned to men—men in general and the ones we call our own in particular—how gorgeous they are, how stunningly, unwittingly sexually attractive men are, just ambling about their day-to-day business without a clue of the things we’re thinking about them.
Women know. All women know, on a very basic level, that other people see us as sex objects. It’s all around us, all the time; it’s embedded, more or less overtly, in nearly every message our society sends us. And that’s the problem there, is that it’s in every message, that it’s expected to be our primary purpose, regardless of whatever else we may be or may be doing. That sucks, and isn’t okay, and is another subject for a whole lot of better writing elsewhere. In an appropriate context, however, it’s pretty great: being willingly, consensually sexually objectified is a helluva lot of fun. And objectifying someone else in service of your own satisfaction? That’s a head trip and a half, and it’s a pleasure that most of us rarely get a chance to enjoy in the media provided for our entertainment. Sitting in my seat at the movies, I’ve gotta get my pants-buzz watching Jason Statham just happen to look the way he looks while he’s pretending to murder nameless bad guys; it’s unlikely that there will be a scene showing him strip down solely for the purpose of titillating people like me. That’s beenchangingrecently, however, and Maker bless BioWare, nobody does a better job of catering to (or trying to cater to, at least) everybody’s desires. Continue reading Maker Bless Dat Ass: Cullen Stanton Rutherford and the Female Gaze→
I am playing Dragon Age Inquisition on the Xbox 360. My first character is an Elf Rogue Archer named Yuna. She was originally named Velyuna, but after remaking her twice due to makeup fuck-ups that bothered me once the game actually began, I decided she was the type of person who would drop the first syllable of her given name and just go by Yuna.
Yuna has medium brown hair, lovely green face tattoos, perfectly shaped ears and a retroussé nose and Alix Wilton Regan’s voice. She is earnest but often sarcastic and, much like her creator, has a weakness for handsome human men. Yuna is really good at shooting things with a bow and arrow. And Yuna hates wearing clothes.
I haven’t even played Infamous: Second Son yet, and I ALREADY FEEL THE PAIN!!! Keep an eye on this most marvelous of recent internet creations for an extensive catalogue of Troy Baker faces, voices, and feeeeeeelings.
In other Troy Baker news:
I previously had very little-to-no interest in playing Shadow of Mordor, but Felicia Day really knows how to sell me on it.
For some reason it seems to be popular to bag on Kaidan Alenko, Biotic Sentinel and Staff Lieutenant of the SSV Normandy. For the life of me, I can’t understand why. Dude is tall, dark, and foxy. He can blast enemies around with biotic fields. He’s hard-working, forthright, respectful, and he has the voice of Carth Onasi. C’mon dudes, no brainer! I was never irritated by unwanted advances on Kaidan’s part, because I was busy trying to jump on that from the second we touched down on Eden Prime. When he got a little jealous over my Shep’s friendliness with Liara, I made a face like this:
I was into. it. And when the time came to choose between saving Kaidan and Ashley when the shit hit the fan on Virmire? Well, Ash, you did a great job protecting that nuclear bomb until it could blow Saren’s geth to hell. Your family would be proud of you. Do I have any regrets? Well…no, because Kaidan turning up at my cabin for some pre-final-mission, chain-of-command-crossing, we-shouldn’t-be-doing-this-buuuut-grab-Shep-with-the-intensity-of-a-reserved-dutiful-dude-unleashing-long-repressed-SEXY-FEELINGS Doin’ It was totally worth it. I was into it. Continue reading L2 Rejection→
A little while back the estimable Megan Patterson of Paper Droids needed some good screenshots of Garrus and FemShep makin’ eyes at each other. (She swears it’s not for porn, though I’m still holding out hope she’s gonna use ’em for something freaky.) Since I had some handy dandy saves at opportune Mass Effect 2 moments and am armed with a game capture device, I decided to record the romance of Vivian Shepard and Garrus Vakarian for posterity. As a Friday treat to you all, behold!
Gather round, kiddos, and let me tell you a tale! A story of not so epic proportions.
Long, long ago in the early 2000s in A Good Place to Live was a teenage girl. She was hyper, talkative, and unfiltered, and she was in love. Everyone knew it. It was pretty much the only thing she could ever really focus on. Even strangers knew her affections. Around this same time frame, another talkative teenage girl would hear her exclaim “HE’S SO HOT” at a soccer game. Unbeknownst to them they were the actual soulmates…but that’s another story And. It. Is. Epic. I know… I know… I KNOW. I can hear you whining “Ughhh, Kaylan, what does this have ANYTHING to do with vidjeo gamez?!” Well, if you would have been patient you would have soon found out that this puppy love, teenage bliss (Okay, lets face it, OBSESSION) is how Kaylan Christine Kennedy ended up playing her only MMO (Ed. Massively multiplayer online games). (I sincerely hope I am using that term right. I’m not the best with this vernacular since I really am not a fan.)