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Romancing pigeons in the park
November 30, 2011 3:14 AM   Subscribe

Otome games - a subgenre of visual novel where a female protagonist romances one of a selection of male characters. (Make your own!)

Hatoful Boyfriend (TV Tropes) - a visual novel (download, English patch), where a female protagonist attends high school with, and romances, one of a selection of giant talking pigeons and one partridge. Also she lives in a cave and forages for food.

The freely downloadable version (for which there are a couple of mirrors on the TV Tropes page, if the original is acting up) is sadly not the most complete pigeon-dating experience available. There's a paid version (note from the author here explaining the differences) which is as yet untranslated. The experience of dating a Bleeding-heart pigeon will have to wait.
posted by emmtee (25 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
Oh, I forgot to mention that it needs QuickTime installed in order to run. If you're as hesitant about letting QuickTime anywhere near your computer as I was, bear in mind - the protagonist is actually a barbarian. She refers to her terrible warrior king on at least one occasion. Also one of the endings involves leaving school with one of the pigeons. To seek the perfect pudding.
posted by emmtee at 3:35 AM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Color me baffled, creeped out and utterly mesmerized...

Someone who has a modicum of understanding of Japanese culture could, perhaps, put this in context: is this mainstream? fringe? fetish? How is this romance for (young?) girls?
posted by victors at 3:48 AM on November 30, 2011


It's not a crazy-Japan thing, really, it's a crazy-(and not entirely serious-)individual-creator thing. It's sort of 50% magnificent obsession and 50% parody.
posted by emmtee at 3:51 AM on November 30, 2011 [2 favorites]


In the west we call it surrealism, in Japan we call it weird.
posted by KokuRyu at 4:00 AM on November 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


Not mainstream at all. In fact, if what goes by mainstream is prime time tv, there was just an hour long program on Americans doing stupid stunts (like idiots who'd seen Jackass and thought, why not me) on camera.

The pigeon dating sounds a lot more fun, to be honest.
posted by Ghidorah at 4:03 AM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I've read this post probably 3 times and I still don't really get it. But "quicktime" clued me in to the fact that there is something to be watched in video form, which led to a fruitful YT search.

I still don't know what's going on, but now I don't have to have the reptilian gaze of Wikipedia Author Susan Hewitt on me while I find out about it.
posted by DU at 4:27 AM on November 30, 2011


... As seen on Manly Guys doing Manly Things.
((It really is a good webcomic. Ignore the name. The name is just a distraction.))
posted by CrystalDave at 4:47 AM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


Just the other day on MeFight Club, I was expressing a desire for a game mod such that I could use some of the unbound keys on the right side of the keyboard to make my Khajiit swordsman, er, swordscat rub his face on his traveling companions, givers of quests, Breezehome and the like, and to claw the curtains and spray the furniture of his vanquished foes.

Now I see that I lack vision.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 4:48 AM on November 30, 2011 [4 favorites]


In case it isn't clear (it probably isn't...) the name Hatoful Boyfriend is a pun on "Heartful" (Japanese-English meaning 'emotional', 'heart-warming', 'sensitive') and the Japanese word for 'pigeon', hato.

Yeah. If you are interested in otome culture, try 'Otome Road' just north-east of Ikebukuro station in Tokyo.
Prepare to be disturbed.
posted by jet_manifesto at 4:53 AM on November 30, 2011 [3 favorites]


Just to get maximum mileage out of the pun, it uses 'hurtful boyfriend' once or twice in the English version too!

... As seen on Manly Guys doing Manly Things.

I love that comic, but I hadn't caught up with it for a week or so. Now I see Hatoful Boyfriend on there. The pigeons are all around me. Like The Birds except we're dating.
posted by emmtee at 4:58 AM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


pff! Animaniacs had covered this years ago with Chicken Boo. Didn't any of you see the episode where he and Katy Ka-Boom were dating?
posted by KingEdRa at 5:15 AM on November 30, 2011


Run you pigeons, it's Robert Frost!
posted by GameDesignerBen at 5:16 AM on November 30, 2011 [5 favorites]


It's sort of 50% magnificent obsession and 50% parody.

Someone should do a parody of visual novels where the protagonist dates a series of empty hallways.
posted by burnmp3s at 5:27 AM on November 30, 2011 [24 favorites]


Hatoful of Hollow.
posted by mkb at 6:17 AM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


If you are interested in tales of pigeons and romance, you can't do much better than City Face. More City Face.
posted by GenjiandProust at 6:27 AM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


I am enjoying the English translations as per the youtube video walkthrough DU posted. Its making the thing even more surreal for me.
posted by sandraregina at 6:47 AM on November 30, 2011


WHAT.
posted by monocot at 6:59 AM on November 30, 2011


Tokimeki Memorial Girls' Side had a way better fashion interface than Tokimeki Memorial 3.

I am crying the tears of a man ashamed.
posted by pts at 7:12 AM on November 30, 2011


As a note for anybody who might want to install this and experience it for themselves (which I wanted just for the bizarre humour value), I think you need to have Japanese language support installed as well even for the English patch, otherwise all the text just shows up as boxes. I haven't been able to play it because I can't find my Windows CD in all the boxes from when we moved house...
posted by titus n. owl at 9:48 AM on November 30, 2011


Ah, that's possible - I had all the text show up as boxes after installing Quicktime but before restarting, but I had Japanese text support installed already.
posted by emmtee at 10:08 AM on November 30, 2011


titus n. owl: I think you should be able to download the language packs from Microsoft's website or Windows Update.
posted by nTeleKy at 10:12 AM on November 30, 2011


quoth a friend: Nikolai Tesla was born too soon.
posted by idiopath at 11:13 AM on November 30, 2011 [1 favorite]


nearly all of japanese culture, including the mainstream, is fetishtistic. (caveat, I am a recovering otaku).
posted by Shit Parade at 7:45 PM on November 30, 2011


nearly all of japanese culture, including the mainstream, is fetishtistic.

little broad, little derogatory
recovering otaku

i don't know what that means
posted by This, of course, alludes to you at 11:27 PM on November 30, 2011


i don't know what that means

As John Hodgman would say, he used to PowerPoint to nearly all of Japanese culture.
posted by unigolyn at 1:27 AM on December 1, 2011


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