Or, “frequently asked questions”. Though we haven’t actually been asked these things frequently, so it’s more a way to preemptively answer questions to avoid having to do so in the future. In January of 2012, we did an interview with VNs Now that might also be able to answer some more of your detailed questions about our origins and about BCM, our flagship project.

1. What kind of games do you guys do?

There’s a number of games we’d both like to do at some point and looking at the list, they don’t have a whole lot in common. We’d like to experiment with a lot of different settings, stories, and characters in the future, with novel features and twists on common things people already enjoy. Those are pretty much the only plans we really have. We both like various types of fictional genres and types of games, so our work is influenced by a lot of different things, really. It’s difficult to say exactly what kind of games we do, and we’d like to not get shoe-horned into a specific genre. The only obvious thing is that we’re going to be making visual novels until one of us figures out how to do something else.

2. What is a visual novel?

According to Wikipedia, “a visual novel is an interactive fiction game featuring mostly static graphics, usually with anime-style art, or occasionally live-action stills or video footage. As the name might suggest, they resemble mixed-media novels or tableau vivant stage plays … Most visual novels have multiple storylines and many endings; the gameplay mechanic in these cases typically consists of intermittent multiple-choice decision points, where the player selects a direction in which to take the game.”

To put it simply, it’s like an interactive book. Visual novels are very plot-driven and most of the gameplay involves you, as the player, making decisions on where to drive that plot. Of course, some visual novels don’t have choices (the common term is “kinetic”, though I have no idea why) but Cyanide Tea will probably never make a kinetic visual novel because Auro and Camille prefer interactivity.

3. Do your games cost money to play?

Some of them do, some of them don’t. On our projects page, the commercial and free projects are clearly defined. Commercial = costs money. That said, we’ll try to keep the prices fairly low, like around $10-20 USD per game, depending, and supplement this with merchandise sales if there’s a demand for it. Still, we know what it’s like to be students or to not have a credit card, too. We don’t intend on making all commercial games because we’d like to experiment with different things and allow lots of people to play our games. However, the fact of the matter is that games cost time and money to make and Camille doesn’t have a full-time job. Supporting us by buying our commercial games will give both of us the ability to make more games, plain and simple.

4. How can I join Cyanide Tea?

To put it simply, it’s basically impossible for the time being, though we’re not sure if/why anyone would want to, anyway. It has nothing to do with us being selective or anything, it’s just that right now we’re pretty happy as a duo. We may call on people to help us on a case-by-case basis with things like editing, but as they say, “too many cooks spoil the soup”. At this moment we’re just trying to commit to doing the games both of us want to do. Maybe in the future we’ll expand our team, but we’re really just starting out, so it’s kind of difficult to say.