bishoujo manifesto, expanded

it is 5:02pm, december 21st, 2023
AAA game studios continue to manufacture their own decline
a pursuit of realism, a pursuit of IP, a pursuit of wealth, all unsustainable
some producers don't even see the value of filling the player with emotions
the con-men of AI say they have all the answers
but all they can offer is fancier procedural generation

we may think the indie games space is crowded
with millions of artists, how do you stand out?
but that is true only if you look at the bigger picture
what about the niches? the hyperfixations?
you can carve a space, you can spread the word about your game
if you have passion and heart, the audience is a free bonus

did you have dreams as a kid? did you discard them as an adult?
it's ok, i did too. after they were crushed, i had to sever the ties
then one day, a magical girl told me dreams are worth having
i met with my dreams again, i hugged them, i cried, i brought them back
despite the beauty of dreams, can they still pay the bills?
maybe not, but dreams don't wait for profits, they wait for fulfillment

the world continues to be cleansed of all things messy and weird
they throw around words like unpolished, problematic, passé, cringe
we, the chuunibyou, the otaku, the socially awkward, the queers
we must fight to keep the world imperfect, full of wonder, full of secrets
share what you love, but keep some of it an undocumented surprise
never become mainstream, or you'll have to purify your soul with corruption

my heart belongs to all things bishoujo, all things moe
beautiful shiny eyes, delicate hair, flowing skirts, warm smiles
i wish to see the buildings around me covered in their images
even if i have to do it myself, one maid girl flyer at a time
even if your heart belongs elsewhere, take my passion, run with it
our artistic souls must remain loud, for the sake of the world

-Jennifer Raye
(basking in the glow of ToHeart running on a Sony Trinitron CRT monitor)