By: Lorne Whiting

On: September 22nd, 2012

We previously covered Moacube‘s beautiful visual novel Cinders almost a year ago, which makes it a bit silly that we’ve missed its release by a few months.

Cinders is a somewhat loose re-telling of the classic fairy tale of Cinderella, with themes of free will added. The game’s story is heavily focused on the various characters, driven more by their individual conversations than the narrative surrounding the Prince’s ball. I wouldn’t call this a bad thing; it makes the narrative more personal, but it does lend it a certain flavor that I’m sure not everyone will find appealing.

  • tobecooper

    Why are visual novels always so expensive? I mean, I understand the audience is limited, but such high prices are even more limiting. I’m not trolling, I’d really like to read an in-depth explanation, behind these $25 tags.

  • Tom Grochowiak

    It’s really about the limited audience, as you said. These games don’t have mass-market appeal, so lower price doesn’t help. If someone dislikes reading a visual novel, 10 bucks in this or another direction won’t change their mind. The fans, on the other hand, are perfectly fine with paying around $20, as they know they need to support the developers if they want more games in their favorite genre to be released. And it’s not like 20-25 bucks is a fortune anyway.

    From my data and experience with this kind of games, even a huge discount like 50% only brings a short influx of additional sales, and then it gets back to the same amount. It would be simply impossible to make a living from something so niche if we charged much less. There are some exceptions obviously — like Analogue, which got on Steam and was able to ask for a more mass-market price, but those are rare.

    When it comes to living off niche games, their prices, etc., I always recommend articles by Jeff Vogel. He explains it much better than I, and is far more experienced:

  • tobecooper

    Thank you, both for the link and explanation.

    I guess, my problem is that I’m not exactly that VA audience. I tried Analogue and loved it, then tried some Winter Wolves’ games from the Groupees bundle and most of them aren’t really my thing.

    Ciders, might not be my thing either, but every time I see news about it, I’m stunned by the visuals. It looks really impressive and unique.

    It’s a pity you didn’t put it on Greenlight when it was free to do so. The game has enough mainstream charm in its graphics, to maybe make that work out somehow.

    But I understand your argumentation, and again, thanks for that.

  • Tom Grochowiak

    You are welcome :).

    I know that many developers are allergic to comments/questions about their game’s price, but as long as it’s not simple trolling, I fully understand people’s concerns — it’s their money after all.

    Cinders is probably closer to Analogue than to Winter Wolves’ games in the overall mood and subject matter, so you may be surprised if you decide to check it out.

    We’re going to put it on Greenlight in the near future, so we’ll see how that goes. I’m not putting my hopes too high, but I would feel awful if we didn’t even try.

  • Daniel Wright

    That is some fantastic art.

  • yoyo

    I think TigSource needs a reviewer for the front page. Like, urgently.

  • Mister Czar

    This makes Katawa Shoujo’s status as a high quality VN that’s ALSO freeware that much unique.

  • Anonymous

    You volunteering, then? I bet Derek would let you.

  • Derek Yu

    We always accept guest articles here: Although unlike before, I won’t post anything that gets submitted.