Funny (?) story time about having to explain why I stayed up so late last night and was subsequently tired at work:

This guy I work with, who is a pretty big nerd, and once used the term “grok” to describe my understanding of some paperwork, noticed that I was tired today. He is my pseudo boss of sorts, and I know he is in to games, (though not quite the same shit as us, apparently), and I told him I stayed up late playing a game, but that I wouldn’t tell him what it was. A little background: this guy plays a ton of WoW and is seemingly in tune with the MMO scene. He frequently references obscure sci-fi and Lovecraft stuff, so he’s at least in the right arena of people I can talk about games with.

Anyway, we eventually discover that Yogurtland is doing a free frozen yogurt thing and decide to head over there, only to be dismayed by an hour long wait. I figure it’s not worth it to save $4, so we skip Yogurtland and start walking to our cars. On the way, he asks “so you’re really not going to tell me what you were playing?”

And I just start backpedaling something fierce. I start yammering on about how I know these people (super respectable people for sure) from this place online where we deconstruct games and talk about them in a kind of academic way and we often focus on obscure and niche titles, etc… I go on like this for a minute, and I ask him if he knows what a Visual Novel is.

He gives me one of those wide-eyed “what the fuck?” looks and says “aren’t those porn games?”

My response is, “yeah, kinda, but this one is different. It’s about a kid who guys to a school for people with disabilities or other issues that prevent them from being in a more conventional school.”

The eyes get wider. “You stayed up late last night playing a game where you fuck disabled girls?”

“Well, no, I mean you can, but that’s not really what the game is about. It’s actually very tasteful” I say, realizing that makes it sound way, way more lurid than it actually is once the words are out of my mouth. “It’s mostly about getting a slice of life that most people will never experience. I played it for about five hours and saw maybe ten minutes of nudity, tops.”

“You can’t get this on Steam, can you?”

“No, but if you want I’ll e-mail you a link to download it. It’s free.”

“Uh, okay” he says.

And that’s why you reserve talk of Katawa Shoujo for the Squawkbox.