Blade Engine Released, English Visual Novel Scene Explodes

CuriousFactory (Akiba Angels’ parent company) has teamed up with Japanese game developer Buredo for the English release of the Blade Engine, a visual novel game engine that can be used to implement most of the features commonly found in visual novels, renai games, dating sims, and eroge.
I haven’t experimented with it myself so I can’t say how it stacks up against similar tools currently in open source development (such as Ren’Py and ONscripter, thanks to rq for the references), but having another option on the table for potential developers is always a good thing. Tutorials on the use of the engine are available here, the software itself is here, and a press release (feels like a blast from the past already) can be found here.

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0 Responses to Blade Engine Released, English Visual Novel Scene Explodes

  1. Randall Fitzgerald August 10, 2006 at 9:00 am #

    Oh boy! Slipshod story and mediocre art! I can’t wait for American fans to ruin up galge like that did with manga and OEL! :D What a lucky day for the fan scene!
    I’ll try to hold out hope that at least one of the damn things ends up being not awful. That’s the best we can hope for.

  2. DMC August 10, 2006 at 9:47 am #

    Interesting… Just yesterday I was pondering Welcome to the NHK! and wondering if there were any English-language tools available for making visual novels out there. While I’m terrible with prose and lack the motivation to go through with the production of a full-fledged visual novel from the beginning to the bitter end, it’s still interesting to know there are options there if I ever decide to take on such a project.

  3. unangbangkay August 10, 2006 at 12:39 pm #

    I can’t wait for American fans to ruin up galge like that did with manga and OEL!

    Wouldn’t Americans ruining OEL manga be something of an Oxymoron? Since it’s mostly Americans making the OEL, there’s no original standard that Americans ruined, since it’s all American anyway.
    And I sincerely doubt that it’s Americans that ruined “regular” manga. Japanese mangaka still create for their domestic market. If anything blame the Japanese.
    And anything that makes galge more accessible is good at a time like this. It makes it more likely that “real” galge can cross the pond.

  4. VanRaily August 10, 2006 at 1:35 pm #

    Well, it’s certainly been a while since I’ve been here. Kind of amazing how the real world catches up to you after college…
    Anyway, this whole Blade Engine thing looks rather intriguing. I’m terrible at actually bringing things through to conclusion, but it might not be the worst experience to give this thing a try. Of course, I’d probably end up with one of Mr. Fitzgerald’s “slipshod stor[ies] and mediocre art”.
    How does this sound, for starters? “After leaving his hometown to attend school in a distant city, Yuji is forced to board with his relatives. But little does he know that they have 12 daughters…they’re all identical…and they’re all named Sakura! What could possibly happen?” Perhaps I should just give up now? Although, having 12 identical characters would make things easier to draw…
    Seriously, though, depending on what this Blade Engine can actually do, it might be kind of cool to give it a shot. Might even be kind of fun. Of course, there’s the whole art thing to worry about…pencil + paper + scanner + mediocre skills does not bode well for that department. But, if someone were to offer their skills, then we’d have something…
    Now, for the obligatory unrelated news: the new Sound Horizon single has been announced. Seems it includes the theme songs for more than one game this time around: Belle Isle and Idea Factory’s Chaos Wars. Go grab the short version of the Chaos Wars track here:
    http://www.sound-horizon.net/music/BoyWS.htm
    I really like what I hear so far. It’s not nearly as hard-hitting as, say, Schwarzweiss (their prior game-related offering), but this time around the singer can actually sing (no offense to the Shimotsuki fans). The credits list 4 separate singers for the single so I can’t be certain that the rest of the songs will be on par with this offering, but I certainly hope so. It has a bit of an Ar Tonelico vibe to it, what with flutes in the background. And it gets even better about halfway into the track, when the singer starts with the non-lyrical vocalizations.
    Even if the rest of the single is bad, go buy it when it comes out on 09/20, because it’s for an Idea Factory game, and I like Idea Factory. Even though I’ve never actually played any of their games.

  5. Randall Fitzgerald August 10, 2006 at 2:25 pm #

    unangbangkay:
    That was meant to be a comparison. They will do to galge with the Blade Engine what they have done to manga with OEL. Which is, produce crap product.
    VanRaily:
    I don’t mean to say that’s all peopel are capable of creating. Heaven knows I’d love to be proven wrong. I just lost all faith in American creators a long time ago and things aren’t looking too good still. But I’m a cynic, so there you go.

  6. kento August 10, 2006 at 7:24 pm #

    interesting, i’ll definately be trying this out if i ever manage to get the download to work. if it turns up well i might consider switching from good ol’ gamemaker.

  7. ShinjiPG August 10, 2006 at 7:36 pm #

    I wonder what that CD Single has to do with this :D

  8. omo August 10, 2006 at 11:05 pm #

    Having played some of the doujin games out there, I think it isn’t out of reach of some creative otaku to pull it off. Are you this special creative visual novel person?

  9. loplop August 11, 2006 at 12:48 am #

    I’m going to have to DL and give it a try. Very interesting. . . .

  10. VanRaily August 11, 2006 at 3:42 am #

    Randall:
    By all means, there’s no need to apologize. I actually agree with your statement about most American-made manga being bad, and was just playing along with it. One look at all the people spouting off their anime/manga ideas at AnimeNewsNetwork’s “Hey, Answerman!” column is really all the proof you need.

  11. nosepicker August 12, 2006 at 1:11 am #

    Randall:
    http://img142.imageshack.us/my.php?image=oriochionoese0.jpg
    Try it. It’s better than MANY translated doujin visual novels.

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