For a few years now, I have had the pleasure of knowing the streamer and author HusbandGoddess AKA Kristi. From visual novels to professional wrestling, the two of us have had interesting conversations about the crazy worlds of Western and Eastern media. She has begun developing her own EVNs with the first Loving You Fully due to release in March 2021 as well as started as a new contributor to the VN Game Den website. Today I’m talking to her about her journey as well as a few quirks the two of us have Caps Locked over for the last few years. I hope you enjoy the conversation!
VNs Now: So, let’s start with something straightforward. This week would have been the opening week of the second XFL season if the XFL was still functioning. Do you feel robbed as a fan of The Game by the fact we did not even have a 2020 champion?
Kristi: I think I feel more robbed by the fact that COVID-19 ruined our chances to see such a grand spectacle of the New York Guardians going against the DC Defenders. Whether it was going to be good or an absolute dumpster fire, it was going to be entertaining regardless. Maybe in 2022 we will be able to see a game and be decked out in XFL gear.
VNs Now: When we look back at 2020, there were a lot of plans and ideas that were affected by COVID-19. How did the pandemic affect you and how are you doing processing things?
Kristi: Aside from school and attending what I like to call Zoom University, life has been normal for the most part. My dad got COVID in early May because he works in New York, the hotspot for the virus at the time. He got better but at the time, I wasn’t sure if my dad was going to be okay. He’s 62 and doesn’t know what the phrase, “take a break means.” I think I inherited that from him. Outside of that, I was able to get a part-time job which helps with development costs for my game. So, I think it evens itself out.
VNs Now: Let’s move on to something less bleak. You’ve spent several years on YouTube and Twitch streaming and doing Let’s Plays of Visual Novels. What attracted you to these games and doing online content?
Kristi: Finally, a light-hearted question! I started playing dating sims when I was 11 or 12? It first started with Sakevisual’s RE:Alistair++ and then I moved onto flash games like Pacthesis’ multitude of games. At the time, I just really liked cute anime boys!
I s2g jp do not judge me for the anime boys i was like 12. (Only mild judging was involved in the editing of this interview)
Anyway, originally my YouTube channel was going to be dedicated to RPGs but after my first visual novel playthrough, which was Jisei. That was more so for my own personal enjoyment but once I saw the positive feedback from viewers and even developers, I just kept playing visual novels. Of course, my horizon has expanded. I’ve still played otome games but also tried out games like 428: Shibuya Scramble, the massive waste of time known as Beach Bounce and its side games, and a horror BL game called Let’s Meat Adam.
VNs Now: Reflecting on the games you’ve streamed or done videos on, what are three that stick out to you? What are some of the things in those games you really enjoyed, whether it is a particular storyline or character?
Kristi: Just three? How rude of you JP to limit my options. I’m going to exclude 428: Shibuya Scramble because if you’ve watched my streams and I know you did, it was very obvious I had a blast with that game. So with that being said, regardless of the quality of the game, I think the King of Phoenix, Amnesia Memories, and Cafe 0 ~The Drowned Mermaid.~
King of Phoenix was a giant train-wreck that I had fun ripping apart with you, TryinMorning/Patrick, and Chris.
Amnesia Memories was the first big otome game that I played for my channel and it got a lot of attention. I think it was also my first Japanese otome game and it was on a completely different level from other otome games I’ve played at the time.\
While Cafe 0 ~The Drowned Mermaid~ wasn’t on the same level of bad as King of Phoenix, it was just a…weird game. I’m not entirely sure how to describe it. I highly recommend you play it JP!
VNs Now: I mean, I’ve inflicted enough crazy VNs on others. Gotta take a few for the team at some point. Moving on, You’ve often said 428: Shibuya Scramble is one of your favorite games. What was it about that game that put it at the top of your list?
Kristi: Often? I never shut up about that game, JP. What’s really funny about 428: Shibuya Scramble being my favorite game is that at first, I was against it getting localized. I don’t know if you or any of your readers remember the drama that surrounded Spike Chunsoft but I’ll gladly give a TL;DR for you all.
A few years ago, the developer released a poll on Twitter asking their fans what game they would like to see localized: 428: Shibuya Scramble, Kenka Bancho Otome, Shiren the Wanderer, and Kamaitachi no Yoru/Banshee’s Last Cry, The otome fandom is a force to be reckoned with so they all jumped in and voted for Kenka Bancho. Hell, even I did! Kenka Bancho Otome ended up winning the poll but nothing came of it. The otome fans got PISSED!
Despite being upset, I tried out 428 to see what the hype was about and holy crap, I was honestly not expecting the story to be so good. It’s an incredibly innovative game that uses its parallel storytelling to its advantage. You learn about these characters, their unique situations, and see them grow as the bizarre mystery they find themselves in starts to unravel.
It’s an emotional rollercoaster filled with heartbreak, laughter, and choices that you’ll end up sinking in 30+ hours like I did.
VNs Now: You’ve joined up with the gaming site VN Game Den. What are your goals in writing for the site? What are you looking forward to covering for them?
Kristi: I’m very honored to have joined the team over at VN Game Den! I’ve always wanted to be a content writer on a video game website so now I can cross that off my writer’s bucket list.
My job over on the site is a content writer. While I won’t do reviews, I will be creating a variety of articles. If you’ve visited the site, my first two posts have been top 10s. What I enjoyed about creating those lists is that they’re not your typical lists. I try to think outside of the box and introduce new titles to people while considering all parts of the genre. So, for example, on my Top 10 Visual Novels That’ll Make You Cry, I didn’t have Clannad or Katawa Shoujo. While those games are great and can definitely invoke emotions in players, it’s been recommended by everyone. So, in their places I added games like AI: The Somnium Files and Bokuten – Why I Became an Angel.
I guess you can say that my goal is to broaden peoples’ horizons.
VNs Now: You are now writing a few of your own visual novels. What is it like to go from reviewer and commentator to a game developer?
Kristi: It’s insane, honestly! Though, I guess it’s a natural evolution. You can’t expect people to make your own ideas come to life and trust me, I have a ton of them. Thanks to my time on YouTube and Twitch, I’ve been able to make connections and build a reputation for myself within the visual novel community so if I wanted to team up with them, they’re just a DM away. Another plus is that I already have an established audience which makes it easier to market my games.
VNs Now: Outside of your planned projects, is there a story you want to tell in the future or a theme or setting you want to explore as a writer?
Kristi: HORROR! I suppose I can even share a little bit of what I have instore for my inevitable adventure into that genre.
I’m a giant fan of horror but it’s an incredibly hard genre to pull off well. There’s so many elements to take into consideration such as sound design and even environmental design. How can I unsettle the reader while not using jumpscares? How can I develop excellent characters in a scary environment where they might lose their life? How would their choices affect the story and to what degree? Do I have the threat be someone the group knows well or should it just be a deranged killer that’s nearly unstoppable? It’s a lot to think about but I’m very excited to get to it eventually.
VNs Now: Having played the demo for A Marble’s Muse, it seems the overall theme deals with the struggles reaching your full potential. What made you choose this theme and why did you choose to tell this story with marbles?
Kristi: It’s a very relatable theme that I’m sure my fellow creatives can attest to. For me, I’ve personally dealt with a ton of self-doubt created by me. For others, there are different reasons for why they can never really reach their full potential, let it others or standards that get set upon them. Without spoiling it, there is a reason for why Clarke is so hard set on getting a muse and keeps mentioning these great artists.
As for marbles, I dunno. I just thought it would be cool.
VNs Now: There is no subtle way I can ask this question. Why is Nimble Moon such a weeb?
Kristi: DOES THAT MEAN YOU PLAYED MY GAME AND YOU DIDN’T TELL ME ABOUT IT? This is why we have trust issues, JP.
The original plan for Nimble Moon was for her to be what was known as a chuunibyou. However, it seemed the term only applied to kids in middle school and Nimble Moon is an adult. So, I made her a socially awkward, geeky marble who has confidence while in her superhero suit.
VNs Now: LOOK MY WAYS ARE MYSTERIOUS BUT HAS BEEN PASSED DOWN THE ARMSTRONG LINE FOR GENERATIONS. Ahem. So, what are you looking forward to working on after A Marble’s Muse?
Kristi: Winning Hearts: Wrestling Otome! It’s a project I’m very excited for because not only do I get to write about a subject that’s close to my heart, but I’m working with the super talented Katy133!
VNs Now: Beyond that there is a project you are working on that’s about to be released. What can you tell us about it and what do you hope your audience will take from it?
Kristi: My first full release is Loving You Fully. A concern I’ve always had with entertainment is the depiction of plus-sized people. They often joke characters and their entire persona revolves around them being overweight. I don’t think anyone should be defined strictly by their weight, mental illnesses, etc. I hope players enjoy Bianca, the main character of the game. She’s 18, a vulnerable age where your self-esteem and worth can be dictated by total strangers or family. She sees herself as just fat and someone undeserving of happiness because of that. While it’s a short game that can be completed in under an hour, I hope can relate to Bianca’s struggles and enjoy the story. 🙂
VNs Now: Finally, I know you’re a big pro wrestling fan so with April right around the corner, who do you think is walking out of WrestleMania WWE Champion and Universal Champion?
Kristi: I’m hoping that Bryan walks out of Wrestlemania the WWE champion to get one last feel good moment before he inevitably retires and pulls a Jon Stewart by fading away from existence to focus on starting a farm in Washington or wherever he lives.
As for Universal champion, it seems like they’re setting up for Edge and Roman Reigns. I think it’ll be weird for Edge to win the title, if I had to be honest. Plus, where do you go after that if he does win? I’m not saying Edge isn’t a good wrestler, he is! I just think it’s important to focus on the younger talent that’s going to stay in the company longer. So, with that being said, I think it’s a safe bet to assume Roman will retain.
VNs Now: Thank you, Kristi!
Kristi: Thanks for the interview, I guess!