Monday, January 18, 2010

Release Date


will be celebrating is 5th anniversary this year on February 12. So you can look at this as sort of its 5 year, 5 month, 5 day anniversary. On the issue that you cannot actually include months and days in the nice definition of anniversary – I think we can let it slide.

But don't abandon this blog just yet, dear readers. While the weekly update may be gone, I'll still be peppering this place with news, artwork, and other OVA-inclined content. Be sure to add this blog's RSS to your reader of choice so you don't miss a thing!

Thank you all for your readership and support.

Monday, January 11, 2010

After the Story

Here we are, nearing the end of this blog's weekly updates. In fact, there is only one more left: Next week you will finally discover OVA's fabled release date!

With the release of the Revised Edition looming, I can't help but reminisce about the beginnings of the game I created. I didn't have a clue what I was doing, learning the skill sets required as I went. I picked up how to use Quark through trial-and-error, conquering all its idiosyncrasies and adventure-game-like unintuitiveness. I concreted my knowledge about a confusing print industry, with all the fiddly dpis, weights, and measures that entails. It was a lot to learn in a short period of time, but I loved every minute of it. Well, maybe not every minute, but you get the idea. It was an experience that not only resulted in my first published book, the same that many of you have already read and enjoyed, but one that has intensified a love of typography, of books, and of design. Without OVA it's pretty certain I wouldn't even have my day-job as a graphic designer.

It's hard to believe nearly 5 years have gone by since then. I might use InDesign now, and the industry I broke into may no longer be the strange, mysterious place that invoked a childlike bewilderment and wonder. But somehow, all the feelings are still there. OVA was the culmination of decades of playing games and dreaming of making one of my own. And even with a new coat of paint and a baker's dozen of patches, refinements, and fixes. It's still that game. My first that I dreamed about many years ago.

Karis was the first character I wrote up for OVA, and somehow it's fitting that she's the last design revealed here. She's still the same hot-tempered bounty-hunter we know and love, just a little bit cooler in every way. Arasuni on the other hand is quite a change in more than one respect, but he is actually much closer to his original concept.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Mastering the Medium

I originally wrote OVA to be friendly to anime fans. Considering that it is an anime RPG, that made a good deal of sense. However, I think I made the errant assumption that someone who likes anime will automatically know how to create a story that conveys the same flair and oomph of the medium.

I plan to rectify that with an expanded Game Master's Section. While the same advice for running RPGs will remain, expect to see a lengthy discussion of common anime tropes and plot devices, along with a crash course on some of the more pervasive elements of Japanese culture. It's not an exhaustive discourse, but it should serve as a sufficient introduction, as well as a useful quick-reference for ideas. More in-depth discussion of specific genres will be left for the (eventually) forthcoming Genre Books.

So Readers, is there any information you feel is essential for a proper anime campaign? I hope the New Year is treating you well so far!

Saspar is a master of one thing, and that's the use of his magical gun. Despite his blindness, he is an unparalleled marksman, and his spell-powered ammunition makes him a fearsome foe. But at heart, Saspar is a sad and indifferent man, following orders only because that's all he knows how to do. His narrow focus also makes him oblivious to the affections of his partner Acacia...