Lunar Wings Games wanted to make a yuri visual novel that stood apart from the typical tropes. In their 2016 Kickstarter they promised an interesting story with body positive LGBT themes. Recently, they posted a Reach for the Stars update, that makes good on that promise.
All of the characters in this dramatic coming of age tale have seen some revisions since the project successfully raised $8,024. The story follows a young woman named Abby who has returned to her old home town after a near suicide attempt. Once she arrives, she meets a group of girls who all appear beautiful and happy on the outside. As she learns more about her new friends, Abby learns that everyone faces their own struggles. Even the happiest person can hold a deep secret within them.
Right from the beginning the project’s creator, Elle wanted Abby to look a little different than typical yuri protagonists. As such, Abby was designed to be slightly more chubby than her potential love interests. “This was always intentional as I wanted to add something new to the visual novel scene. However her weight doesn’t really play a major factor in the story nor is it her character. She’s just someone who looks different,” the update explained.
Baby Got Back(ers)
Backers have been supportive of the design, saying that Abby’s non-traditional look makes her more relatable as a main character. In the update Elle acknowledged that playing as a bigger bodied protagonist might be off-putting to some, but she hoped that most people would see past that and embrace Abby regardless. “If it works out I hope to make more characters (both male and female) bigger in size,” she said.
It’s a great step towards inclusiveness in a genre that heavily favors exaggerated beauty. It’s a shame that none of Abby’s romance options were given the benefit of diverse sizes. Even so, this is a nice way to slowly introduce the idea of various body types into the romance genre. Perhaps once players come to terms with a full-bodied protagonist they will be ready to Reach for the Stars with fuller romance options.