From the creators of the horror visual novel chaos;head, Steins;Gate is a sci-fi about some friends who are able to customize a microwave in order to send text messages to the past. The organization SERN who have been doing their own research into time travel have taken an interest in them, and plan to track down and capture them.
A fan translator who was working on Steins;Gate’s unofficial publishment had gotten an email from JAST USA, which is owned by Peter Payne and the go-to for exporting anything from Japan, and also a publisher of various visual novels translated into English. In an email sent by Siliconera, Payne confirmed that they had an interest in publishing Steins;Gate, but that it’s complicated because they need the permission of both Nitroplus and 5pb.
Now, this part blew my mind.
“In order to make a title like Steins;Gate be really successful, we need the support of major download software distribution platforms such as Steam; something that’s been lacking when it comes to these titles so far (not surprisingly, as most have been 18+ titles, unlike Steins;Gate).”
This means that Peter might put the title on Steam or other distributors, which could have a very positive effect on the lackluster English visual novel industry.
Many things published by JAST USA’s other companies and brands are games with adult content, which is fairly common in Japan. Because of this they are the sole publisher and distributor, which can affect sales due to Americans being prudish about sex. Peter has previously said that Nitroplus, though successful, is a bit of a jerk in how often they want things to be released.
Two other titles that are being published by JAST include the hugely popular lovecraftian tragedy Saya no Uta, and Hanachirasu. Even though they need permission of both, 5pb have an interest in releasing their visual
Glad to see the VN industry is hitting mainstream news. It only took 30 freakin’ years to get around to it. Steins;Gate holds a Bayesian rating of 8.91 on the Visual Novel Database, making it the 5th highest rank VN listed.