Google PH campaign #GoogleMoLang has VN gameplay

Disclaimer: I’m not, in any way, associated with Google or anyone working in the company but, really, who isn’t using Google nowadays?!

I am a newbie when it comes to playing VN (visual novel; if you wanna know more about visual novels, #GoogleMoLang! #JustGoogleIt!). In the first place, I don’t consider myself a gamer since doing so might offend the gamers out there who literally spend hours or days in front of their PSP or computer monitor in order to win a game or tournament, knowing that most games today cannot be paused.mompauseonlinegame

I’ve only started playing them since March this year, but before that I had a general idea of what VNs are like and how they are played. Some anime (Gekkan Shoujo Nozaki-kun, Kami nomi zo Shiru Sekai) even featured parodied VNs, so I was slightly acquainted with them.

Well, I know most of the anime enthusiasts are not ignorant when it comes to VNs.

For starters, what are VNs?

VNs are computer (or PSP) games where the player is the protagonist of the story and most of the scenarios are drawn with respect to the protagonist’s field of vision or perspective (as in, literally), as if the player is really inside the universe where the story of the game being played takes place.

It’s called visual novel (visual + novel) because it is literally a novel with its story reinforced with anime-esque graphics. However, unlike most non-graphic novels, VN scenarios are written in such a way that the protagonist are given a lot of decision-making or branching points throughout the length of the story where he/she is presented with multiple choices in a given situation. Each option chosen will lead the protagonist to an event which may be different from the event that may have occurred has the player chosen another option in a branching point. The branching points are responsible for the multiple endings the player can end with in most VNs. I said most VNs because there are also VNs which are quite the exemption from the previous description: players don’t have choices, they simply have to read the novel and look at the graphics at the same time.

Majority of VNs are similar to what people call “dating sims“, because the player/protagonist literally has to conquer (each) girl/boy in his/her harem and end up dating the chosen girl/boy by playing out the best choices there are. However, that isn’t all there is to VNs. There are a lot of variations among VNs, making them a class of games really fun to play (and read). But don’t tell me that I haven’t warned you of the feels that will seep into your soul when you play some of the most emotional VNs (according to the VN gamers) like Rewrite, Little Busters!, and CLANNAD (Yes, KEY it is; I haven’t played the first two yet and I am still playing CLANNAD).


However you read the post title, I don’t intend to relay a misconception that Google PH or its employees are totally familiar with VNs. I do not know the association of Google with VNs. Maybe their employees have played some VNs, so they came up with the idea of using a VN-like gameplay for their campaign (or they came up with the campaign goals from that gameplay). Or maybe they really arrived at that design without knowing what VNs are or how VNs are played. In the end, we can only speculate how they were able to produce an interactive site in line with their latest campaign, unless someone from GooglePH actually discloses the information, which I highly doubt.

The basic things (player-protagonist role, protagonist POV, choices) are present in the latest campaign of Google PH, #GoogleMoLang (#JustGoogleIt), which was launched last September 23, 2014. The campaign aims to raise the awareness of Filipinos in making the most of Google Search. A player has 8 badges to unlock by playing out the choices in the mini game. However, instead of static images with few animations, the mini game showcases embedded videos of the supporting characters played by some local celebrities. What also made this mini game interesting is the fact that the players don’t only click the choices to go with, but they are also compelled to answer some questions, which require the help of Google Search. And if a player enters a wrong answer, Google will always detect it and keep asking for the correct answers. To make sure that players enter the correct answers, some questions have clues. If you wish to know the story and who those celebrities are, just try playing the mini-game that will only take you around 30 minutes. 🙂

Why am I posting this?

I am not advertising the company per se, but I like the thought of sharing this kind of gimmick to anyone who drops by this blog. Of course, the Filipino audience, especially VN players, might find this more relatable than other audiences do. But if anyone, just anyone, finds this concept interesting and decides to take part in it, I consider that a blissful moment. 🙂

16 responses to “Google PH campaign #GoogleMoLang has VN gameplay

  1. Pingback: 12 Days of Reminiscence #1 – Off to a good start – Anime Vios·

  2. I’m not really familiar with online games, as I don’t play them, but I personally know people who love to play them. Love the memes, especially the first one! (●´艸`)

    • Oh, for the record, VN is not an online game. Hehe. And yes, I don’t play online games, so I can’t relate with the real players out there.

      Long time no see!!

      • Ooooh. (*≧艸≦)
        See, how innocent I am when it comes to these things.

        You’re right when you say “real” players. If we start talking about online games within their earshot, they’ll start rolling their eyes and call out our nonsense. Oh, well.

        Yes, long time no see! Yay! I’m back! (,, ・∀・)ノ゛

        • Yes, yes. :3 And I really have low affinity to games, even VNs. I started playing CLANNAD in March, but until now I still haven’t finished half of the story yet! >.< Although I have been downloading a lot of VNs, I haven't played them. Hohohoho.

          Were you busy with school? IIRC, school started last month, right?

        • Well, when I was a child up until my early teens, I LOOOOOVE the Pokemon games. Hahaha. I think that’s the furthest that I’ve delved into the world of video games. Never really played online games, though.

          Heard about Clannad. Well, good luck on that. I’m really interested in trying out some of the otome games, especially the Brothers Conflict one, but oh well, I’m kind of worried that if I started them, I won’t be able to stop. Especially since school started and all.

          Yes, school started last month, but my absence is not really about school. I’ve been really ill, so I had to recover, but I’m well now so yay! How have you been? Anything interesting?

        • Wow. To be honest, I sometimes feel out-of-place online because a big chunk in online population seem to be Pokemon fans and players of the games. I didn’t play any of the console games when I was young. My childhood was watching anime and playing street games with other kids in the neighborhood. I had a classmate in primary school who had a Game Boy. I didn’t even know that there was such a thing until he brought it to school. I was so unaware, but that’s primarily because I grew up in a simple household. (But, of course, I also asked for plastic toys from happy and kiddie meals)

          Although I said I had low affinity to games, I enjoy playing games. I like arcade games the most. In high school, I and my friends would always go to the mall to play arcade games on Fridays. I was recently hooked to osu! and, years back, Tekken, Call of Duty and Naruto in PSP (I got to play games in PSP because of my cousin. Huehue.) Since my cousin left our house, I hadn’t had a chance to play these games anymore. T_T

          And yes, that’s why I was trying to get into VNs, but I always get to do something else (thus, low affinity).

          I’ve also been interested in trying out otome games, too! I especially wanna play Hakuouki and Norn9. The art in both games is really gorgeous.

          Really? Glad to hear you’ve recovered! *v*)/

          I was also feeling unwell last month. I got sick twice. But the first time was worse, it took me almost 3 days to fully recover. The second time was last Friday. I was at school when I was starting to feel hot. Ugh. Thankfully, my class on WF is only up to 1:00PM, so I got home pretty early although the going home was the toughest part because I travel 1.5 hours to get home. (Yep, I don’t stay in an apartment near my school).

          How’s school so far? ⭐

        • Ooooh. (^_^) I had the gameboy, too. In fact, I had one of the earliest gameboys and had every device in each of its stages until it evolved into the DS right now. I also remember playing some of the earliest versions of the Pokemon game, with the horrible 2D pixel graphics, but nonetheless very enjoyable. Well, that’s ok. I think it was our generation when we still loved playing street games when we were children. My younger siblings now, they don’t know what to do without their tablets. I’m, like, what’s with these kids? Find something to play outside! Hahaha!

          Oh! I experienced playing osu! It’s very addicting, so I had to stop. 😀

          Indeed, Hakouki (even the anime) has great graphics. I’ve read some really good reviews about it. Well, if you really want to try it out, you should. Perhaps I’ll try the BroCon otome game, as well, when school’s finished next year. 😉

          It’s really difficult when you get sick. Glad that you’ve recovered, as well. As for me, my illness forced me to bed for 1 whole week and another week to fully recover, so it really sucked.

          Well, we’re basically the same. My university’s far from home, too. I travel a minimum of 1 hour & 10 minutes and a maximum of 2 hours.

          School’s great, so far. Good thing I got ill during the first month, so it’s pretty easy to catch up. No important things yet. How about you? How’s school?

        • Wow. You can safely say that you had a great childhood for playing outdoor games as well as console games. 😀 *Childhood, well spent!*

          And, yes, I sometimes pity the younger generation of kids because they are so dependent on video games and gadgets which they play their games with. Since there is a ranking/point/level system in almost every game today, kids are so hooked to feeding their ego. Games back then were without goals or any reward system. It was all for the fun of playing.

          I have been inactive in osu! these days. Hehehe. My rank isn’t getting up. Hihihi. My shameful rank.

          Woah. That really sucked, huh. But, YAY, we’ve both recovered from our sickness!! 😀

          Wow. That’s far. Why didn’t you rent a house or a an apartment unit? Do you commute to school?

          Yep. At least it wasn’t during the exams week or any busy week. 🙂 Oh, two weeks ago was the start of the busy days in school. We’ve had exams in some subjects and will soon be having our first exams in the remaining subjects. And, wow, there are school activities that we have to get ready for.

          Since starting this month, everything will get a bit heavier, we *partied* last Friday at our classmate’s house. It was her birthday. 🙂 We ate a lot of home-cooked food and sang a lot of songs (karaoke time~~) and had good laughs. 😀 It was a well-spent Friday for me and everyone else. At least, we took a breather to firmly face the next challenges.

        • Indeed. That’s how I feel. In fact, I miss my childhood days and go emo mode whenever I remember my happy childhood. Hahaha!

          That’s so true. Back then, it was all about the fun that you have playing with your friends. Oh well. Our culture is evolving, too. Each generation has its own pros and cons.

          I thought about renting, but didn’t really pursued it. I don’t feel comfortable living on campus or near the campus. I want to live somewhere far from it, so that I won’t feel that I’m at school every single day. I need the break. And besides, I don’t really mind the long commute. Helps me clear my head before attending classes.

          That’s great! It’s good to enjoy your school days. No regrets. 😉
          How was the exams? Ok?

        • Speaking of childhood games, a few weeks ago, I got to play with my classmates (yes, college friends) during our common free time. We played the anak-anakan version of habulan. XD It was so fun because we ran around the land area of our college, full of nature (grasses, muddy soil, rocks and stones and pebbles, tall trees everywhere). We broke more than just a sweat~ Wew. Then we also played “Mariang Makiling” in the gazebo. We were the noisiest bunch there. 🙂

          How about you try reliving your childhood by playing these games? 😀

          Oh, I see. That’s also one valid reason, huh. Yep, I agree on the part that commuting somehow clears the mind. But in my case, usually, I just sleep within my travel time due to lack of sleep from the last night. Hahaha. And I always manage to wake up just a few meters before my dropping point. LOL. I guess I should thank my guardian angel for waking me up with great timing.

          Woah. The exam results were better than I expected! I’m so happy because I was so worried that I wouldn’t get at least 90%.

          How’s your lessons going? Do you have school on Mondays?

        • Hmmm. I don’t think I’m familiar with “anak-anakan” and “Mariang Makiling”. The street games that I remember playing are hide-and-seek, patintero, the Chinese garter game, and. . .I forgot the names of the other ones. Haha!

          Sounds fun! Hope some professors or university personnel didn’t reprimand you for being too noisy. 😉

          When I was still in high school here, I had a lot of Filipino friends, so we played a lot of street games outside our school building during lunch and after school whenever the weather permits it. Sometimes, other schoolmates from other backgrounds would ask us about our games and join us. Those days were very fun. But now that I’m in university, I rarely see my Filipino friends and whenever my classes end, I just often want to go home immediately. Oh well.

          You’re right. I believe in guardian angels, as well. Especially since I usually get home at night. I’m so worried about being attacked, but thank God that I’ve never experienced any of that, and I’m praying that I won’t have to experience any kind of assaults or anything.

          Great job! Keep it up. Mine’s alright, too. I’m having fun with my classes, since since Literature is my passion. I don’t classes on Mondays. You?

        • Anak-anakan is the tag game where the one who is tagged by the mother ‘it’ also becomes an ‘it’, thus, the term anak-anakan. XD Mariang makiling is a hand chant game where all players form a circle, overlap hands in both sides, and clap the hand of the next player while chanting the song. It usually goes at clockwise direction.

          Oh, my mistake, the variant that we actually played was “My boobs getting bigger” (pretty lewd title, right? XD). It goes like this:

          My boobs getting bigger
          25 kilometers
          Manila hanggang Baguio
          Abot dito
          Romeo Romeo
          Nanay mo ay G*O
          Nabuntisan, nabuntisan
          5, 6, 7, 8

          And the one whose hand gets clapped at 8 is the one who decides the category of things to mention. Basically, it’s like a mind game where everyone has to answer as fast as he can as long as the answer is related to the category decided at every turn.

          I see. Are there many Filipinos there? It must be really different to be in a foreign land huh. BTW, I am curious about your citizenship. Are you registered Canadian?

          Same here! I’ve actually been in almost dangerous situations because of my carelessness (often in the streets), but I always get saved mysteriously. God is really protecting us through our guardian angels. 🙂

          Yup, you, too! 🙂 So you’re taking up Literature Studies, I presume? Oh, I don’t have classes on Mondays. Our university’s class scheduling is mostly focused on TTH and WF for most lecture classes. Monday is usually reserved for laboratory classes, departmental exams, PE, and NSTP. Since I’ve graduated from those classes, I enjoy my liberty on Mondays.

          What’s your schedule for this term like?

        • Ooooooh. Hahaha. I get the anak-anakan game. I think I played a tag game variant called “langit-lupa” when I was still a kid. It was lots of fun, but I still like the regular tag.

          I’m not familiar with the Mariang Makiling. Pardon me but even if you’ve explained it and all, I don’t think I get it. -_- I think I will need an actual demonstration to understand the mechanics. Hahaha! Oh well. And the chant is hilarious!

          I live in Toronto and there are a lot of Filipinos here and other Asians. Well, there is a lot of people from different backgrounds. So it’s pretty multi-cultural here. Yes, I’m a Canadian citizen. But of course, I still consider myself Filipino.

          Good for you. I was told that if you imagine that a guardian angel is walking beside you, you’ll be protected, especially when walking alone at night. That’s what I do, too.

          I’m majoring in English Lit, so yeah. I love books. . .and anime and manga, of course! Hahaha. Well, what I really love are the stories in books, anime, and manga. Oh, I see. Same here. It’s good that you won’t have to dread Mondays, since you’ll be able to take an extra day to relax.

          My schedule for this school year isn’t as heavy, unlike in my 1st and 2nd year. So it’s alright. Of course, the workload is denser and more difficult, but not as heavy like before.

        • Oooh, I played that one, too! Langit-lupa was the favorite among neighborhood kids. Oh, and the “boobs” game? Hmm, looking back at my previous comment, I don’t think I explained it well. So the one who gets clapped at *8* decides a category of anything (e.g. names of rock bands, flowers, universities, subjects, laboratory wares, etc.). He’s also the one to give the first answer whilst clapping the hand of the next person. This is like an ‘answer and tag’ game until someone runs out of ideas within a given time limit, like ~5 seconds? (Everyone else in the circle will start counting down to 3 when you obviously fall silent for about 2 seconds). So the thing is, before it is your turn, you gotta think of something that falls into the category and hasn’t been mentioned by anyone yet. So a player gets a consequence when (a) he can’t give an answer immediately, or (b) he gives an answer already given previously by another player. Tip: Listen well and be attentive of the answers. Gotta keep it all in your mind. And this is why it is a fun mind game. 🙂

          Wow. You live there since birth? So have you gone to Filipino shows in Canada? Do you know the YouTuber, Flip Stavy? He’s Canadian by race, but he claims he’s a Filipino at heart! And his videos are fun to watch. He tries all sorts of Filipino things, like Pinoy snacks, sweets, the language in telling time, counting, etc. 🙂

          Ooh. I see. There’s nothing bad at believing in guardian angels, even though some people might argue otherwise. 🙂 Always be vigilant when you walk alone, okay?

          Good to know you’re living towards your dreams/paradise. Nothing beats indulging oneself in his/her passion(s). 🙂 Keep it up!

          So you’re a third year now? 😀 I didn’t think you were younger than me. Woah. And that’s what the lighter load is for. Gotta spend those free schedules for contemplating the difficult subjects. XD

        • Oh, I see. I kind of get it. It’s like shiritori, but a little more complex.

          No, I was born in the Philippines but moved here to Canada. Almost my entire paternal side is here, so I have lots of relatives here. No, I don’t know about Flip Stavy. Just watched some of his videos. So cuuuuuuute~

          Oh, well. My beliefs are my own. Sometimes even my own family disagrees with some of my beliefs, but I don’t allow them to force their opinions on me. Haha. Yes, I do my best to stay on alert whenever I’m alone. You, too.

          Yes, I just can’t imagine myself doing something that I don’t enjoy for the rest of my life. As I thought, it should be something that I’m passionate about. You, too!

          No, I’m actually in my 4th year. I think I’m older than you because I’m thinking that you graduated high school there at 16, right? Before the K-12 program was approved there?

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