Friday, March 22, 2013

Hero (Monster Girl Quest 3D) - It's the constraints and realistic expectations, stupid!

So after comprehensively stomping all over someone’s puppy I should try and say something positive about the whole 3D Monster Girl Quest (probable) trainwreck.

To be fair, the dude seems pretty good at modelling.  The new Alice model looks pretty good.

But again there’s the time and expectation issue.  How long did it take to make?  What are the range of facial expressions?  What movement animation does she have?  Is she just going to sit there and wag her tail a little, because if that’s the case what is the point of using 3D over Kenkou Cross’s already expressive artwork? 

And remember, there are another 150 monster girls to go after this...

It’s constraints and realistic expectations.  Small game companies and indie developers make very good games because they’re fully aware of their limitations and work within those constraints.

A good example of using 3D graphics to good effect is Pretty Warrior May Cry.  It’s an eroge Dungeon Keeper.  Obviously they didn’t have the budget or team to make full eroge Dungeon Keeper that wouldn’t suck to play, so they abstracted the gameplay to what they could do and stuffed the eroge elements into 3D H-scenes showing exactly how their minions slow down the marauding heroes.  (The lilith animation is available in the trial).

The original MGQ does the same thing.  It’s a RPG with exploration and branching paths replaced with a linear Visual Novel.  This frees them up to concentrate on other things like the story and puzzle(ish) battles (and of course the sexy bad ends).  Violated Hero constrains the player to a Dungeon Master-style Grid.  Desire Dungeon does the same but makes the map a straight line and throws in a chest/loot mechanic.  All the RPG-Maker clones already have most of the RPG mechanics provided by the game maker they’re using.

Hero, Monster Girl Quest 3D, has no constraints.  It’s trying to build everything from the ground up.  In the original MGQ the Succubus Village is abstracted away to a few background pics.  Hero built the town in 3D.  Cool.  But what are they going to do for the Plansect Village, the Harpy Town, the Slime Cave, the cities, the underwater segments, the Demon Lord Castle...?  We’re in George Broussard and Duke Nukem Forever territory here.

No abstraction = too much work = vapourware (or seriously shitty end product that leaves players feeling like someone took a dump in their mouth after eating a foul homemade vindaloo)

Where 3D could really shine is if combined with the combat and Bad Ends.  A Monster Girl Quest with the sex battles/Bad Ends depicted in a similar way to the animations in Pretty Warrior May Cry could work really well.  Aside from the obvious being-ridden-by-a-succubus scenes, various different struggle scenes as Luka is dragged deeper into a slime girl, plant girl or similar enemy would add a lot more to the game than the simple bound/unbound pictures that are used now.  I think a game like this would pick up a lot of interest and have no problems getting indie funding (although it might mean going through offbeatr and smaller dlsites).  It's the difference between going for a niche audience that will definitely come, or jumping for a mainstream audience and falling flat on your face when they don't show.

Again the marketing adage applies: Don't bother trying to appease people that aren't interested in your product anyway.


  1. Unrelated, but in the past day or two I noticed the text on your Literotica page all of a sudden isn't translating correctly, on the succubi's names. Still works in the individual stories, but on your page it's messed up.

    1. It does that sometimes. The special characters in their names get mangled. It's a pain for ebook formatting as well.

  2. This is such a pity.
    Not only would a simpler game with a 3D panel for the sex attacks a la PWMC have been the way forward, but you've also got me fantasising about a blockbuster budget 3D MGQ in the style of Dark Souls.
    Yes yes, it'll never happen for all the reasons you've given and more, but a guy can dream.

    Who knows? In a world where violent video games aren't the cause of shootings or where the sexual representation of women in games like DOA is childish but clearly meeting a demand rather than a slight on feminism, maybe we'd have the openness to be honest and produce an adult mainstream game and say: "This is about quirky sex. We know it sells, it's rated for adults, if you have a problem, don't buy it."

    After all, readers get the their 50 Shades - which is not only shit, but ironically was originally about monster boys - when are gamers going to get theirs?

  3. "end product that leaves players feeling like someone took a dump in their mouth after eating a foul homemade vindaloo"

    You've just won this game a few more sales among the coprophiles out there.