Those of you who have been following for a while may recall that friend of the site Matt Sainsbury from Digitally Downloaded has been beavering away at a series of visual novels based on his site mascot for a while now — you can read about the first one here.
I finally got around to making some time for the second volume — and a look at the third one will be following shortly! — so I figured it’s high time we talk about it. Because, much like its predecessor, it does an excellent job of raising some interesting and relevant talking points without becoming preachy about it.
Volume 2, subtitled Meet Lo and Nettie! focuses on the topic of the male gaze, which is a term bandied about so often these days that its original meaning has become somewhat obfuscated. Let’s see if three cute girls can sort that whole mess out, shall we?
Continue reading My Time With Dee Dee, Vol. 2: Learning to Love the Male Gaze
Yes, it’s the question someone somewhere has probably asked at some point: with two highly regarded Japanese online RPGs on the go right now… is one “better” than the other?
Well, let’s nip that one right in the bud from the outset: no, because they’re two rather different experiences from one another, and as such aren’t directly comparable in terms of “quality”.
We can, however, compare their different approaches to various aspects of the online RPG experience, and from that, you can hopefully determine whether or not one or the other is “better” for you personally. So let’s do just that!
Continue reading Should You Play Phantasy Star Online 2 When Final Fantasy XIV Exists?
Well, after an inordinately long wait — about eight years, to be exact — Phantasy Star Online 2 has finally arrived, for both Xbox One and PC players… and possibly with other platforms to follow.
To say that English speakers have been eagerly awaiting this game is something of an understatement. The Dreamcast original, being one of the original breakout successes in online gaming — and many players’ first experience with cooperative, social online gaming — is a widely beloved game, so in the eight years since Phantasy Star Online 2 released in Japan, people have been finding increasingly creative ways to get their fix, with particularly dedicated fans even going so far as to provide translation patches.
Now, none of those workarounds and fiddly tweaks are needed; everyone can just play Phantasy Star Online 2 as they please. So I thought it would probably be a good idea to jump in on the PC launch day and have a go. Read on to find out how that all went.
Continue reading Phantasy Star Online 2: Day 1 As an ARKS Operative
One of the nice things about being a non-commercial site that isn’t funded by big corporate advertising bullshit is that I’m not obliged to be in “competition” with any of my peers.
That means that when people like our friends over at Digitally Downloaded do something cool and interesting, I can explore it for myself and, more to the point, make you aware of it, dear reader.
If I haven’t made this abundantly clear already, the following relates to a piece of media created by a friend of mine. And if you have the slightest interest in media criticism and making use of the conventions of gaming to educate or learn something… you should definitely check it out!
Continue reading My Time With Dee Dee: Learn Through, Uh, Doing
It’s Tuesday! That doesn’t mean anything in and of itself, other than the fact that I’ve arbitrarily decided it’s time to pay the Empire Club of Custom Order Maid 3D 2 another visit. And that has nothing to do with it being Tuesday.
Today, we continue getting to know our “main three” maids a little better as Hi-chan tries her best to convince Majima-san to join her on her quest to become an idol maid. Aya, meanwhile, has numerous things to practice. And who knows what that mysterious little fox girl is up to?
Dust off your membership card and come on in, and be aware that there are NSFW images and themes ahead!
Continue reading Custom Order Maid 3D 2: The Reluctant Idol and the Photoshoot
Last time, we talked about how Breath of the Wild makes use of its shrines as a short-form, handheld-friendly take on the Zelda series’ dungeoneering.
There’s another major part of the game that provides an interesting twist on this traditional aspect of the franchise, however, and that’s the Divine Beasts.
Providing significant, dramatic, story-critical challenges for Link to overcome, the Divine Beasts may, once again, be a bit of a deviation from Zelda’s previously established norms, but they’re still very cool.
Continue reading The Zelda Diaries: Part 6 – A Beast of a Time
It’s time to pay The Empire Club another visit after our initial look at what went down on its first day of business.
Today, we meet the other two maids who stayed on after our uncle decided to leave us with a crippling debt, start to get to know our staff a bit better and finally begin making a bit of money.
It seems at least one of them has an ambition, too… Let’s check in with them and see how things are going!
NSFW images ahead!
Continue reading Custom Order Maid 3D 2: Sex, Sommeliers and Song
We’ve already seen numerous ways in which The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild distinguishes itself from its illustrious predecessors, but one of the more controversial changes for some was how it handled “dungeons”.
Rather than unfolding through a progression of discrete, large, self-contained dungeons that become more challenging as the game progresses, Breath of the Wild instead provides you with 120 shrines to discover and solve, with each taking just a few minutes at most to get through.
It’s a markedly different approach to classic Zelda — but it fits perfectly with the game’s non-linear, exploration-centric structure. Let’s take a closer look.
Continue reading The Zelda Diaries: Part 5 – Indoor Play
Something a little different for today’s Waifu Wednesday!
With the long-awaited English language release of KISS’ Custom Order Maid 3D 2 on both Steam and Nutaku, I wanted to give this game some coverage as, if you didn’t already know, the Custom Maid series in general is an important part of MoeGamer: the site’s mascots were all made in previous game Custom Maid 3D 2.
I’ll be checking out this game over the long term as there’s a surprising amount more to it than I realised, but what better time to kick things off than on Waifu Wednesday? Let’s knock on the door of the Empire Club and see what awaits us…
Some very NSFW gubbins ahead. You have been warned!
Continue reading Custom Order Maid 3D 2: First Day at the Empire Club
I’m not an especially active or outdoorsy type… but I’ve always enjoyed the atmosphere of being out in nature. You know, so long as it isn’t trying to bite, sting, cut, burn, poison crush or otherwise bring me to harm in one way or another.
Some of my fondest memories are from childhood, when I had the good fortune to be able to go camping with both my class at school and my Cub Scout pack. My most longstanding, happiest recollections of those trips do not involve the many activities we participated in — but rather simple things, such as gradually drifting off to sleep to the soothing sound of rain on canvas (occasionally punctuated by class clown Christopher Smith farting) or feeling a quiet sense of awe at the almost complete silence around us, save for the leaves on the forest’s trees rustling in the wind.
Breath of the Wild is making me extremely nostalgic for all this sort of thing. And, best of all, I don’t have to go out in the blazing hot British summer sunshine and/or torrential British rain to enjoy it.
Continue reading The Zelda Diaries: Part 4 – Peace and Quiet