Some parts of this interview may have been edited to reflect current events.
VTuber Summit is a passion project that comes to you from Ren Aevum. We interviewed Ren before the game's launch to find out what he's cooking up.
What Inspired You to Make VTuber Summit?
Ren: "With the large VTuber boom back in late 2020, I wanted to make something meaningful for VTubers that hasn't really been thought of before, especially for VTubers that wanted to hit the ground running as independents.
"This entire game was actually a derivation from a smaller project I created a long time ago with a few VTuber friends, where it had a simple premise and comedic undertones.
"I took that idea of a 'VTuber Game' and expanded it with ideas borrowed from other video games I played in my childhood."
Did You Expect to Become a Game Dev When Starting Out VTubing?
"No, actually. I wanted to be a VTuber and make content like most others out there, but I had no idea how to make it unique or any idea how to stand out.
"I was at an impasse of what to do until I got help from a friend on what direction to take my content on. I'm very thankful for that conversation because it really helped me to focus on what I can bring to the table in my own way."
What Were Some of the Worst Challenges You Faced When Starting the Game?
"There were many times when I thought I wouldn't be able to finish this game. As the game started to take more time to develop, there was a lot of VTubers dropping from the scene left and right.
"I would sometimes wonder if it would be worth it to continue developing the game and ask myself 'What am I doing this for?' There are a lot of popular fangames out there that were gaining massive notoriety despite them only having short development cycles.
"Despite this, I've come to terms with it and chose to see the project through to the end as a love letter to VTubers in general. They've helped me out personally to get through the pandemic and to help make my dream come true of making a big game."
Did Larger Content Creators Reach Out to You for Participation?
"Yes! Though at the time when the first PNG drop post was announced (Who remembers those?), they were creators that hit the ground running just like everyone else. Although they were not large content creators at the time, I'm happy to see their success flourish over the past years.
"You can expect to see some big names such as AyuuChii, Kabhaal and Sugoi in the main campaign as well as other names in the game's side content."
Did You Leave Characters Who Graduated In?
"Oof. This was a tough decision to make initially. Going back to the topic of me feeling I took too long, I had to consider who would make sense to still be in the game; I removed a lot of graduated VTubers from the initial gauntlet from 2021 - 22.
"However, there is one place in the game where graduated VTubers are mentioned. But I can't say anything further than that for now.
"I discussed this topic with a few of my colleagues - even if it were just a small percentage of the game being voice acted, it would take a lot of effort and resources to ensure that the quality and direction are consistent and good.
"However, I do not have much in terms of finances or time to make it happen, so I apologize for any inconvenience.
"In terms of post-release updates, there are none planned in the foreseeable future outside of bug fixes and patches. I mainly plan to release the game in one complete package, should there be any new content to be developed, I will strive to make the effort if there is a demand for it.
"In addition, I'd like to include additional languages in the future. Some of the artists and musicians I work with do not natively speak English so I hope I can find the right resources and the right people to someday accomplish that."
What Are Your Favorite Battles from the Game?
"Hmm, among the battles in the 100 VTuber gauntlet, I would say these are my favorite:
- #5 Sagiki - Her gimmick is essentially throwing snacks. It's not very useful in combat as they only heal enemies... that is unless you combine it with another move called Snack Frenzy, which causes any healing to the opponent to deal damage instead via Food Poisoning.
- #21 Jeff McBiceps - In terms of raw base strength, he's probably the toughest in the game. His attack power boosts the more damage he takes. Needless to say, I got carried away a few times and had a few party members die to him in the past, haha.
- #50 - I can't disclose at this time who it is, but I worked on this fight a great deal. It takes place in the middle of the game, at a crucial point of the character's growth - it's a challenging fight that really tests everything you've learned so far and has a good emotional payoff."
Is VTuber Summit 2 on the Horizon?
"Mmm... no plans at this time, I'd say. This game was a lot of work, so I'd like to take a short breather after this is done.
"However, if I do end up making another game like this, I would like to take time to think of a way to make it even more unique, haha.
"That, or maybe someone else can take up the reigns with their own creative input."
Who’s Your Favorite VTuber (Besides Us)?
"I would say in terms of corporate, Ouro Kronii. In terms of indie (Besides Elle and Booster), it would be JOY3USE."
Banner Illustration: NeonLab