The recording of our PAX East 2014 “Foreplay: Romance in Games” panel has gone up on Nerd Appropriate!  (the panel itself starts at the 15-minute mark of the podcast)

On the panel you’ll find myself, Amanda Cosmos, and our moderator Sean Baptiste (Community Manager at Fire Hose Games), along with Miellyn Fitzwater Barrows (Co-founder of Tonic Industries & Creative Director at Gorgeous Robot), Hilary Heskett Shapiro (Co-founder of Tonic Industries & Product Marketing Manager at BioWare), Aenne Schumann (Co-Host, Reset Transmission Podcast, Press2Reset), and Mike Laidlaw (Creative Director of the Dragon Age franchise at BioWare).

It was such a pleasure being on the panel! And surprise guest Mike brought a funny element to the panel. Some games discussed: Gone Home, Mass Effect, Persona 3/4, Hate Plus, Amnesia, Catherine, Jade Empire, Dragon Age, Hakuoki, and Sweet Fuse, to name a few.

And you’ll get to listen to me admit to a crowd of 400 people that my favorite romantic scene in a game is from DRAMAtical Murder…

PAX East Panel

This coming Saturday I’ll be on a panel at PAX East in Boston, MA! The panel is called Foreplay: Romance in Games and it’s something they’ve had at the past couple of PAX events as well. I was brought on by my friend Sean to be sort of an “otome voice.” It should be a lot of fun! If you’re at the conference then head down to the Cuttlefish Theatre at 6:00 PM on Saturday to check it out (or you may want to show up earlier, there’s usually a line).

If you’re curious about the past panels then the Nerd Appropriate podcast has recordings of the ones from PAX East 2013 and PAX Prime 2013. I’ll also post up the recording of this one whenever it goes live.

Rated NA episode 98 - Foreplay: Romance in Games

Rated NA episode 123 - Foreplay: Romance in Games


My friend Cara Ellison reviewed the 3DS version of Hakuoki for Eurogamer recently with a bit of coaching from myself. Once she learned how to approach the game she found herself enjoying it! She also writes a pretty excellent column about sex and relationships in games over at Rock Paper Shotgun (cleverly titled S.EXE).@acosmos

I recorded a podcast last month with my friend Anne Lee discussing all thing lady-oriented dating sim (and other such media)! It was a lot of fun and happened to be my first ever podcast appearance. Anne was a lovely host and if you like this you should give a listen to some of the past episodes, featuring a collection of guests contributing to topics ranging from Monster Hunter to Figurines. — @acosmos

Otome Games 101 - Origins


乙女ゲーム —oto-me gee-mu — “maiden game”

Lately, and with increasing frequency, I’ve found myself explaining what “otome games” are to fellow game developer and journalist friends of mine at meet-ups and conferences. I do this happily and willingly, since it’s a genre that personally fascinates me, and most of the devs I talk to seem unfamiliar with but curious about dating sims in general. The people who ask usually do have some sort of familiarity with romance sim elements from other series, like Persona, Harvest Moon, and BioWare games, but the fact that there is an existing industry in Japan built around video game dating sims targeted specifically at women is often news to them.

Magical Girl Jam results

The Magical Girl Jam concluded back on October 31st, and the results are FABULOUS!

We got some great games submitted: Twine hypertext works, Ren’Py visual novels, RPG Maker entries, a board game entry, concept art, and even an Oculus Rift game!

I’m really proud of everyone’s hard work and the games that were brought forth. I wasn’t able to finish my own game in time but the prompt and timeframe allowed me to spec out a game I’d like to create and release in the future.

Thanks everyone for participating! Hope you all enjoy the entries as much as I have.

Magical Girl Jam

I’ve organized a game + art + craft jam based around the Magical Girl genre.

You can find the website here:

It’s a long jam, in order to give people time to organize their teams, thoughts and submissions (and because I’m too damn busy in this Year of Luigi). I’m really excited to see all the entries and pumped up about my own entry!

Head on over if you’re interested in participating!