Welcome back to Mystic Messenger Trash, where I chronicle playing Mystic Messenger. The following contains spoilers for V’s good and normal routes in the game, passing mentions of the bad endings, and general in-game lore that you learn outside of Another Story. There are also some spoilers for Rika Behind Story.
Another Story, which encompasses both V’s and Ray/Saeran’s routes, takes place six months after Rika’s “death” (unlike the routes in Casual Story and Deep Story, which take place two years after). Another Story is basically an alternative universe of Mystic Messenger, where the player-character shows up earlier than in the Casual and Deep Stories. For the sake of length, I’m going to assume a baseline level of MM knowledge. (more…)
Sidequest’s former managing editor Naseem Jamnia used to do sciencey things, but they now slam their keyboard and call it art. Their debut novella, THE BRUISING OF QILWA, introduced their queernorm, Persian-inspired secondary world; their middle grade horror debut SLEEPAWAY comes out in 2025.
Content note: this piece mentions suicide. This piece also contains minor spoilers for various Romance Club stories.
In 2019, I was scrolling through Apple’s App Store in search of an interactive story mobile game similar to Pixelberry’s Choices. I had wanted to play Choices since its conception, when I used to watch playthroughs of some of the stories on YouTube. However, my problem is that I’ve always found the diamond choices to be extremely expensive. I’m not interested in having to watch numerous ads and then wait for hours to mine for free diamonds, so I feel that I can’t fully enjoy the app’s stories. There have also been complaints from fans about how the quality of the app’s story outputs has been dwindling. In fact, I had tried playing another mobile game, Chapters: Interactive Stories, but found the stories badly written. (more…)
A graduate from Macquarie University who majored in Creative Writing for her Bachelor’s degree.
Teacup is a young frog, and she really loves tea. In fact, Teacup, a chill narrative game from developer Smarto Club, opens with the titular frog preparing to host a tea party, only to discover she is fresh out of tea (and several other supplementary ingredients)! That’s where the player comes in, taking control of Teacup as she ventures out into the world to get what she needs for her party. (more…)
Zainabb Hull is an editor at Sidequest, a freelance writer and videographer, and sort-of artist. They’re also a trans, queer, and disabled brown femme. They tweet into the void at @ZainabbHull.
This piece contains descriptions of explicit sexual content (aimed at mature audiences).
Predictable heterosexual smut.
Carbon copy plots.
These are some of the complaints I see people make about the mobile visual novel genre, a category which includes obviously named apps such as Choices, Episodes, and Chapters. However, as somebody who has been playing these sorts of games for years now, I am very happy with the strides that many of these apps have made to become more inclusive. If you like LGBTQ+ love stories but were disappointed in the past by apps like these, I think Choices is worth your time. (more…)
Ennis Rook Bashe is a nonbinary romance novelist, social worker, and cat dad. If you want to read books with badass queer and disabled characters who take care of each other, you can check out their Amazon author page or sign up for their newsletter. For more information about their series following disabled trans people with magical powers, you can follow them on TikTok at @RookTheBird.
Hello! I rejoin you from an internet-free weekend (not by choice, unfortunately) to share everything I missed from the last 48 hours and beyond. I did not play many games during The Great Unplug, but I did play much game, by which I mean something like six hours of Dungeons & Dragons, in which my character had some shady stuff happen to her, got knocked unconscious, woke back up and took righteous vengeance, and everybody discovered she was a warlock all along.
Oh, I guess I did play roughly two million hours of Twenty by French Guys and Overcrowded on my phone because they (mostly) work offline. Good times.
Melissa Brinks is Sidequest’s editor in chief, co-creator of the Fake Geek Girls podcast, author of The Compendium of Magical Beasts, and an aspiring beekeeper. She once won an argument on the internet, and tweets at @MelissaBrinks.
Having thoroughly exhausted several picross games (shoutouts to Eyes, Two Eyes, and Nonogram Life), I was lucky enough to catch Melissa planning out her Ranking the Babes of Switchcraft piece right as I realized I really needed a new game that would prevent me from ever being truly alone with my thoughts. I picked up the game, then picked up the piece, and dear reader: Missy is right, everybody sure does have different taste. So now I come to you to set the record straight and offer a different ranking of the babes of Switchcraft: not one of hotness, but one of violence. That’s right, I’ve rated each character by how much I would like to fight them in a 7-Eleven parking lot. (more…)
Zora Gilbert cares a whole lot about words, kids, and comics. Find them at @zhgilbert on twitter, and find the comics they edit at datesanthology.com.