Why do some visual novels remove auto scrolling?

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Sonomi
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Why do some visual novels remove auto scrolling?

#1 Post by Sonomi » Fri Jul 28, 2017 9:14 pm

I noticed that a lot of visual novel creators are removing the option to auto scroll text from the gameplay screen and I was curious about that design decision. Personally, I do like auto scrolling because it allows me lie down out of arm's reach of my laptop.
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Re: Why do some visual novels remove auto scrolling?

#2 Post by trooper6 » Sat Jul 29, 2017 2:15 am

I'm not sure I've removed the option from my game yet...but I certainly will do so. Mainly because in my game you must make a deliberate choice when moving forward. You choose one button to normally move forward and you use a different button to interrupt the person you are speaking with. Auto-forwarding removes the dilemma of this choice which is central to the conceit of the game. In other words, the design choice is a specific and deliberate one that matches the artistic vision of my game. Of course my game is also something like 15 minutes long only...so it shouldn't be too onerous. I don't know why other people make those choices. I would hope they have specific reasons.
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Re: Why do some visual novels remove auto scrolling?

#3 Post by ketskari » Wed Aug 09, 2017 2:01 pm

I can't imagine removing auto-forward mode. I already get complaints from people who can't find it and have been getting tired index fingers from clicking. But I guess it might be fine for a short game.

Also, text games have a history of being more accessible, so be cautious about removing any feature that makes it easier for players with some disability--especially since some people might be playing Ren'Py games because Ren'Py games have a lot of built-in reader- and disability-friendly features like self-voicing, quick-saving and large number of save slots, auto-forward, etc.... I've come to the point where I plan for future games to have a "VN Mode" and some other mode ("Game Mode"?) where I can experiment with more in the way of timed choices, etc..., without inconveniencing somebody.
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Re: Why do some visual novels remove auto scrolling?

#4 Post by parttimestorier » Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:19 pm

In some cases it could just be that for one reason or another, they did their programming in an engine that isn't really made for VNs (or is made for VNs but isn't made well), and doesn't make it easy to implement auto mode. So they might have decided that the other benefits of the engine outweigh the negative of not having auto mode, or just kind of forgot about it if it's not something they habitually use themselves and they didn't have beta testers who pointed it out or anything.
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Re: Why do some visual novels remove auto scrolling?

#5 Post by sasquatchii » Fri Aug 11, 2017 7:37 am

I think for some developers it might also be a usability thing, or just not realizing so many people really enjoy the auto mode.

I removed auto scrolling from my first visual novel, simply because I never use it and thought it wouldn't be missed. Fortunately, it is an extremely short and silly game (5 minute playthrough) so it wasn't a big deal to the majority of players.

I now know better and will probably be keeping it for my future VNs.
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Re: Why do some visual novels remove auto scrolling?

#6 Post by mugenjohncel » Tue Aug 29, 2017 2:28 am

My reason is a bit more simpler... I don't know how to control and edit how auto scrolling will work and behave... I'm one of those not-so-technically-inclined people where we brute force our way to solve problems... if I can't control it, we simply omit it for convenience sake...

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