Rance Series ends today! A brief look at its influences on Konosuba and Kazuma as a character.

You may or may not have heard of the Rance series, but it won’t be wrong to say that it is a cult classic in Japan. It celebrates its 10th and final entry today after a long 29 year history. While the series is something that won’t generally be discussed on the site, I figured that it would be reasonable to very brieflyΒ talk about it given its history with Konosuba and – loosely – Fate.

First and foremost, the Rance series is an Eroge Series, that is to say, in more western terms, a pornographic game series.

Due to a limited scope of audience, the series is not quite as impactful as the ideas of sadness and empathy being true strength wrought upon Fist of the North Star (Hokuto no Ken) or Kyoani’s inception of moe through the anime adaptation of The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya (Suzumiya Haruhi no Yuutsu), but it is deserving of attention in its own right, for its radical ideas if not for its long legacy.

It’s influence extends to much more than just Konosuba, but its much more obvious in Konosuba than it is in others and the readers here are more familiar with Konosuba as a whole, so its a good starting point.

Alright, so what does Rance have to do with Konosuba? Lets first take at a look at the titular character Rance:
– Brown Hair
– Wears exclusively green
– Adventurer
– Deceptively strong
– Self-serving with a sense of justice
– Happens to be only one who fights Demon Kings on a regular basis, mostly out of pure coincidence.

Although there are some aspects are taken out of scope, such as many of Rance’s antics that would be illegal by today’s standards, it seems evident that the character is an inspiration for Konosuba’s Kazuma. That said, while bearing the same personality traits, Kazuma is much more mellow on most fronts. One might say that Kazuma is Rance’s personality mixed with the cultural traits of the Japanese.

Rance was probably the first lead character of his kind in the industry and the series’ massive popularity upon release in 1989 sparked a new interest in this type of character. Although, by western standards, Rance isn’t a very controversial character, Japan is a country with unmatched standards for humility and collectivism. A character with such radical sense self-expression was certainly something out of the left field.

The narrative structure of the Rance series is also semi-episodic, much like the Konosuba series, whereby the story picks up loosely from where its left off but each installment has a self-contained story. However, as I have no way to actually reinforce my argument on the influences Rance had on narrative structure in the industry given my lack of knowledge on the full history of the industry, its best I leave it on that note.

Overall, there is a lot more to talk about regarding the series, such as the sense of control given by its RPG elements compared to its visual novel-eroge counterparts (one being Fate stay/night), but since this was more of a spur-of-the-moment discussion post, so I’ll be putting this topic to rest for now.

10 thoughts on “Rance Series ends today! A brief look at its influences on Konosuba and Kazuma as a character.

  1. Oh yeah Rance there’s that one famous commenter who mostly frequents the Death March comment section right? He’s DEFINITELY my only exposure to Rance.

    I could definitely see their similarities. Both are very blunt and might be taken to be dumb and overbearing, and at times it might seem they are downright evil (Kazuma’s cowardice and perviness). But at their core when push comes to shove they run headlong into danger with a strong belief in finding a “third” option in any scenario to save as many lives as possible, usually having as much fun with it as they can.

    … I mean *cough* that’s what I gathered from the picture yeah….

  2. Say what you want, but the Rance games as a whole are very solid with an incredible gameplay and quite nice stories actually. I love Rance VI and Sengoku Rance :D. Moreover that soundtrack man. They have awesome music too. Other game that is often overlooked or considered infamous, while in fact the story, character progression, and gameplay are really, really good is Monster Girl Quest πŸ™‚

    1. I fully agree, the lore in particular is fleshed out more than any other series I’ve seen, and the gameplay is really involving as well. I do wish that there were some SFW version of the game so that it could reach a larger audience, but I suppose that won’t be Rance anymore.

  3. Well, I’d say Rance’s tendencies to “nonconsesual phisical relationships” would make him quite controversial if this wasn’t such a niche series in the west. I mean, chauvinist and rapist would probably appear in every single sentence describing him… Not that you couldn’t use them on thousands of other ErogeMCs though.

  4. Rance you will be missed! Man why did they only animate Quest for Hikari as a promotional material for the games… Make more of those please!

    1. so SUPER MINOR SPOILER, rance 10 gallery is up in your typical hentai website.

      So yeah, menad doesn’t have a scene :(, and TURNS OUT A LOT OF girls dont THEM either. seem the rumor on forum is true that this is the shortest out of all the series. shame

      BUT DESPITE BEING the last one, they can always do remake :smiley: since in technically a sequel

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