A downloadable game for Windows, macOS, and Linux

Buy Now$5.00 USD or more

languages: english / 日本語 / deutsch / espanol / français / 한국어 / português / 简体中文

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three women, three stories, three springs.

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experience the stories of haru, erika, and manami in A YEAR OF SPRINGS, a visual novel trilogy about a trio of friends navigating their feelings of love, connection, and just wanting to belong.

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FEATURES:

  • three visual novels with multiple endings
  • an all-new epilogue exclusive to the trilogy collection
  • soft and cute art with a relaxing original soundtrack
  • music player, cg gallery, and other extras

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in one night, hot springs, visit the hot springs with haru, a young and anxious trans woman who just wants to enjoy herself on a trip with manami but doesn't want to cause any trouble.


in last day of spring, start off the reiwa era as erika, a well-meaning ex-delinquent who runs into more issues than expected when trying to plan a spa day for haru.


in spring leaves no flowers, help sheltered university student manami think about what friendship and romance mean to her as she spends a day with haru, erika, and her boyfriend.

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LINKS:

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community copies: the minimum purchase price is set to 5 usd, but by paying above the minimum price, you can donate community copies for other users & also support me in making more games like this.

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streaming guidelines: it's ok to stream this game, but please do not stream the epilogue. i put a lot of love into it so i want people to be able to experience that on their own first.

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content warning: this trilogy discusses issues that people of different genders and sexualities may face, which is a topic that can be sensitive and personal.

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featured in:

  • tokyo game show 2021: indie game selected exhibit
  • indie live expo winter 2021

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ALSO ON STEAM & CONSOLES

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merch on REDBUBBLE & BOOTH!


Purchase

Buy Now$5.00 USD or more

In order to download this game you must purchase it at or above the minimum price of $5 USD. You will get access to the following files:

a-year-of-springs-win.zip 107 MB
Version 1.03
ayearofsprings-1.03-linux.tar.bz2 91 MB
Version 1.03
a-year-of-springs-osx.zip 90 MB
Version 1.03

community copies

Support this game at or above a special price point to receive something exclusive.

community copy

if you are in need & cannot afford A YEAR OF SPRINGS, you can claim a community copy donated by other users. tips at above the minimum recommended price go towards community copies.

if you claim a community copy, i only ask that you pay it forward in the future by buying a copy for a friend if you can, or sharing / reviewing / commenting on the game if you can't.

Also available on

Development log

Comments

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Viewing most recent comments 1 to 40 of 77 · Next page · Last page
(+1)

I purchased and played through this on Xbox. As a transwoman, some of what Haru went through hit really close to home; especially the conversation with Erika towards the end of "Last Day of Spring". I really enjoyed my play through, despite the fact that I started crying uncontrollably haha.

thank you for playing on xbox! i'm happy last day of spring resonated with you 💐 

Hi,

I recently claimed a community copy of this game on here, and once I was able to, I purchased it on Steam as well (alongside DLCs for the games available there) to show my appreciation for lovely and cute games like the ones in this collection that also deal with hard-hitting and important topics. Once I set aside some time to play it, I will be sure to leave a review and rating, and to notify others who may be interested in it as well.

(+1)

thank you for playing on itch & on steam! 💐 

wonderful game :)

thank you! (:

I wrote this on the older version without realizing there was a newer one. I just want to know if you plan on releasing an Android version as well. Thanks. :)

if you read the page, you'll see a link to the google play store (:

Oops. lol. I found it. :)

(+1)

Thank you so much for this game! It was such a great and eye-opening experience for me about how it feels to be trans in a society like today's. As someone who is questioning, Haru's story hit pretty hard for me, and it hasn't left my mind since buying it on Switch a few days ago. It even helped me about coming to terms with myself about who I am and who I feel like I am. 


Thank you <3


-Cathy Nekonin

(+1)

hi! thank you for playing on switch. it means a lot to me that haru's story could help you even if just a little bit. 

(+1)

I couldn't play this game because I don't have enough money to buy it myself and I don't think my parents would buy it for me, but I played the three games separately for free and I don't think a game ever impacted me this much, I never realized what trans people go through each day, thank you for making me understand and teaching me. These games are so well made and beautiful, so again, thank you! Keep up the good work ^~^

 (,,> <,,)

- Daisy <3

thank you for playing the games separately! if you haven't seen it, there are community copies available on this page for those who can't purchase the trilogy. if you claim a community copy, i only ask that you pay it forward in the future by buying a copy for a friend if you can, or sharing / reviewing / commenting on the game if you can't.

No I haven't seen it, ty for telling me! I will see if I can claim a copy and then I'll review the game :>

(+1)

Wowowowow.  I have no words—except to say that this trilogy is absolutely beautiful.  The art style is so warm, the characters work amazingly together...it's all just so good.  ❤️  Thank you for an incredible experience!  Can't wait to gift a few copies to my friends.  :)

thank you for playing! i'm happy you enjoyed it & i hope your friends do too if they play. 

(+2)

I bought this game on Switch, and I can confidentially say that no game has ever left this much of an impact on me.


So, some context: I'm Serena (formally Aiden), a transgender woman who fairly recently came out (I came out to my mom in September). I've had a lot of issues with gender dysphoria and being extremely unsure of my sexuality, and until recently I've really felt trapped.


So, I'm browsing through the eShop "deals" section, and I see a charming looking game icon which catches my attention, and upon reading the description I knew I wanted to get it. I'm still fairly new to being trans, so I figured that it would be interesting to play a visual novel featuring a trans protagonist, who I'd come to know as Haru.


Over the past two days, I binged the game and maaaaybe filled up my Switch with screenshots of the game- either way... wow. Getting to know Haru and realizing how much I relate to her and the problems she faces on a daily basis helped fill in so many blanks. It made so many things make so much more sense, and kind of just made me feel like someone... understood. Especially when Erika and the staff lady both went out of their way to show Haru comfort and acceptance, the game/novel gives me hope that things are gonna get better, that one day I will have that supportive friend/person who helps me take the next step and feel more comfortable as... myself. Be it the writer or Haru, I felt a deep connection right from the get go. I became invested in Haru's story, and I was excited to learn more about Erika and Manami, and it was a really exciting feeling.


When I started the second game, I was a mixture of intrigued and excited. Getting to see things from Erika's perspective was a really interesting change of pace, as while she was a character that I got to know a little in 'one night, hot springs', it was really interesting to see things like her personal thoughts and feelings, living space and that, despite her daring/often rude undertone, she always meant well. It really built up both my understanding of Erika as a character and the relationship between Erika and Haru. It was really cute and I absolutely fell in love with this chapter.


The third game was definitely the game that shocked me the most, honestly. Seeing crossed-out choices that often times Manami would go against if picked... it honestly hit really close to home with me in terms of that anxiety and second-guessing everything, which is something Haru also does to a lesser(?) extent. Reading through her conversation with Haru and Erika about asexuality/aromanticy put me in tears. It all felt so... genuine. As with the rest of the game, the writing was superb, heartfelt and genuine.


I won't spoil the Epilogue, but it capped off an amazing, heartfelt visual novel the best way it could. In an odd way... I want to see more of Haru and Erika, even if their remaining stories are best left untold.


Thank you, npckc, for making this.

(+2)

thank you for playing & for this really sweet comment! i'm happy you stumbled upon the game & i hope you have a good rest of the year. 

(+1)

i played one night hot springs over a year ago over a friend's recommendation, and i am so so glad i did. the three stories and epilogue all deeply resonate with me more than anything i can think of, and having a character i can relate to as much as haru feels really nice.  

i want to thank you for all of the effort you put into your games.  ^v^

thanks for playing!! i'm glad the stories resonated with you 💜

(+1)

Finally, I had the time to play a year of springs and it is such a wonderful and lovely game. Especially the story of Manami felt so true to me as I'm asexual and I experienced some of the situations as well. Thank you for creating such amazing little games <3

(+1)

thank you for playing! your comment about manami's story means a lot to me because i was really careful when writing it to do my best to represent asexuality well. 

Thank you for always trying to do your best <3 It was pretty amazing. Sometimes I think I'm broken because I don't feel any sexual attraction, I can't even understand if someone is flirting with me. This felt so, so, so right. Thank you so much. <3

(+1)

hey!!!! i just wanted to say you're definitely not broken for that! i went through the same feelings previously & it's something i still struggle with, but we're both perfectly normal human beings who just happen to not feel sexual attraction (:

(+1)

Hello!

As I just had a baby, postpartum depression has been kicking my butt so, in my downtime, I was checking out games to play. 
This resonated so much with me.

I claimed a community copy was thrilled to find this such a wonderful playthrough on the various stories. The representation really just made me so happy.

I will purchase a community copy the moment I can. The soundtrack is so pleasing even my baby calms down when they hear it. Thank you so much ^-^

(+1)

hello, please make sure to take care of yourself - postpartum depression can be really tough! i'm glad your baby enjoyed the soundtrack too.

(+1)

Since there really is no way for me to buy this game yet, I claimed a community copy in hopes of buying your games in the future. I've been a fan of your games since I discovered A tavern for tea, and i must say I really appreciate the work you put in each and every one of them. I attempted to go in as blind as possible and I was incredibly happy to see representation done so well. Can't wait to see more of your work!

btw the ost is absolutely amazing, I'm a sucker for good music in games and this one is gorgeous.

thank you for the comment! i'd appreciate it if you pay it forward in the future, especially if you've played my other games - i've set their price as $0 pay-what-you-want, but the labour & time i put into them is not free. i'm glad you enjoyed the soundtrack.

Of course! The moment I can, I'm donating for a community copy or gifting a friend one, I know it takes a lot of effort and time for these games to be made.

  fuck i just claimed a community copy by accident im so sorry lol what do i do 

(+1)

i don't think there's any way to undo that but if you want, please consider gifting a friend a copy or donating for another community copy (:

how would i donate a copy? i dont know how to 

(2 edits)

copying from the summary:

community copies: the minimum purchase price is set to 5 usd, but by paying above the minimum price, you can donate community copies for other users & also support me in making more games like this.

if you buy a copy at 5 usd that will cover the cost of the community copy you claimed but that would just mean you end up with 2 copies i think. however, you can choose to gift a copy to somebody else if you have their email from the purchase screen.

  thanks you so much ill try to buy it when i have the chance <33

(+1)

wow, the sheer number of times i teared up playing this >.< congratulations on the steam release and good luck / have fun on the tokyo game show! you definitely deserve it.

the best part of this was the three different characters in three stories, and i LOVE how they're all so different, such that everyone in the lgbt+ community can relate in some way. haru that she's trans clearly and deals with the troubles it brings. erika dives right in and finds that she's sapphic and takes it in easily. and manami is clueless and needs a lot of companion and support to realise that she's aroace, and there are so many of those 'i thought you wouldn't support me, i'm so glad you did' kind of moments that just make me yearn for a better future

and the epilogue was SUCH a pleasant surprise! it's like... it gives me hope that there's a good future for us, that things will turn out all right in the end.

thank you so much for making these, i haven't loved a visual novel as much since butterfly soup! the art was simply 🤌 and the music was just lovely. the only thing that i have to comment on is that the music transition is sometimes kind of abrupt, but it was rare and didn't affect the experience much.

these games are phenomenal. they help lgbt+ people to accept and understand themselves and cishet people to learn more and understand their friends. a 10/10 experience.

good luck at the tokyo game show~!

(+1)

thank you for this lovely comment! i'm especially glad that you enjoyed the epilogue as i meant for it to be hopeful ✨ 

(+1)

dearest npckc,

i claimed a community copy as i really, really can't afford these games, but i will write a detailed review: 

i've played the original jam versions, but i must say: playing 'a year of spring' after discovering the originals made my heart so happy!! i never stop loving the games you make and the storytelling from the three different perspectives really made me feel like i was part of the whole experience.

in the game, i always choose to be honest with my friends and it's so rewarding to feel the connection that they have, but i also know that in real life, not everyone is as kind. this collection of visual novels provides a safe space for me and so many people, and i'm so happy that it's so pure, cute and relaxing.

i guess i really needed this when life got too stressful? i felt like Erika, Manami and Haru would always be there for me to play through the games and enjoy watching their relationships unfold. the music gave my surroundings such a warm, comforting feeling, yet the games still didn't disconnect me from reality by only portraying happiness and fluffiness and joy and rainbows.

these games show the harsh reality of being part of the lgbtq+ community, especially in an east asian country like where i live. i connected with the story in a way so personal to me that it even helped me understand my own life more. i could understand Erika's frustration at the discrimination, Manami's fear and confusion after realising that she was different and Haru's quiet acceptance of the cruelty directed towards her. 

these experiences that people of the lgbtq+ community go through are painted so beautifully, so simply and so impactfully in the games. they are powerful without being graphic or violently giving the readers the message. 

i feel that everyone should play these visual novels, whether for comfort, education or just fun. i loved interacting with the characters!

all i want to say is thank you so much. these are games that i will play again and again, through sunny mornings, rainy nights, heartbreaks and happiness, and their messages will stay with me for a long time.

祝你幸福。

(1 edit)

thank you for this very detailed review! 

i hope that you will enjoy the game just as much on your repeat playthroughs!

(+3)

Thank you so much for sharing this wonderful story with us. It's really powerful as a trans girl myself to see that experience represented with this kind of sensitivity and care, both to the problems that trans people face and the joys of living life as oneself. I think the game format was really perfect for this and I really can't recommend this game series enough to my friends and family. I might already have gifted it to two other people already ahaha.

And the two sequels! Just a perfect combo too. The exploration of what it means to be an ally in Last Day of Spring was, I think, really powerful, and in a way that felt very personal. 

And I think the self-discovery coming out story in Spring Leaves No Flowers was a very good portrayal of what the coming out process is like (I'm potentially ace-spec myself, but I'm not quite clear) both in that discovery that one's experiences aren't normal, and how it relates to others.

And, of course, the characters! I've talked about the story a lot in broad terms, but I think it's equally important to think of it as a story of three specific girls: Haru, Minami, and Erika. It's amazing how attached I was to them during such a short time, and how real and individual they managed to feel even with the player making choices for them.

Just. Thank you. These games really meant a lot to me. I don't think I'm going to stop recommending this, both as an exploration of queer experiences and as a lovely story about three girls finding their paths, for a long time.

(+3)

thank you for this comment & for sharing this game with others around you! i'm happy you could connect to the characters because they are all very dear to me. 

(+3)

As I queer (or LGBT+) person I normally turn to art which shows our struggles in very harsh ways, since I often cant relate to a fairy tale story, especially since the world is, still, very hostile to LGBT+ people.

This beautiful collection of heartwarming games manages to be extremely hopeful and comforting because it doesnt shy away from the hardships of our lives, but rather it totally revolves around them. The story of these three amazing women shows us that we dont need to live in a fairy tale to be happy, we only need friends (and maybe even lovers) to support us in our journey though life.

Thank you for making these games! 

(+3)

thank you for playing! i'm glad you felt this trilogy was hopeful because that was my aim with it. i know the world sucks a lot but i want us to be able to at least sometimes find respite & to be able to hope that we might be able to create a space with those closest to us that we can be happy in.

(+3)

I just finished the epilogue.  I'm AroAce and trans and I teared up during Haru and Manami's stories.

(+3)

thank you for playing to the epilogue! i hope that you enjoyed the ending.

(+2)

I did, a lot.  I'm going to have to make time to play your other games now!

(+2)

First of all, I love this game so much! The art was so cute (Erika's v-shaped smile omg) and the theme of friendship and acceptance were someting I really enjoyed.

I played most of it yesterday night and then came back to it today to get all of Manami's endings and read the epilogue.  When I started playing I didn't expect to fall in love with all three of the characters the way I did in such a short period of time but here I am, writing this comment with tears in my eyes hahaha. Manami's story especially touched me because I'm also aroace and her relationship with Tatsuya and the way she talked about love was something I could relate to. 

Thanks for creating this game ^-^ I'm looking forward to your future projects!!

(+1)

thank you for playing! i'm really happy that manami's story touched you since her story is very dear to me. 

(+3)

Hi! I'm enjoying the game in Korean.(sorry to my poor English😥)I couldn't buy the bundle because I didn't have a way to pay for it, but I played all the spring trilogy in three hours as an Android version.

I joined itch.io because I really wanted to leave an impression of this great game!! It was so much fun because I was able to immerse myself deeply in the story while playing the game. I loved all the characters, and the illustrations and soundtracks of the game made me feel comfortable and happy.

I'm cisgender woman and also heterosexual, so maybe I can't fully understand people with different identities and directions from me. But through this game, I think I'll be able to get as close to queer as possible, even if it's not perfect.

It would be a great pleasure if many non-queers can understand queers through these games and to be able to accept them as members of society. Thank you so much for making a great game!!!

(+2)

hi! thank you for making the effort to comment in english. (i'm sorry i don't understand korean!) i really appreciate it & i'm happy you enjoyed the games on android. 

(+1)

i was able to get a community copy a few months back and was yet to write a review/comment on the game until now

I absolutely loved the games!! thank you so so much for making them ;;o;; besides myself, I know some people who are trans and my own partner is trans as well - I couldn't help but relate quite a bit to erika about her relationship with haru and how she tried her very best to make things safe and comfortable for haru aaaaaaa-- 

all I can say is: these games are a HUGE comfort for me and i hope others will feel the same as i do 💙👉👈 thank you once again for making this wonderful trilogy!! i am very much looking forward to seeing more games or stories with the girls once more!! :D i hope you have a day as lovely as you!! <3 

(+1)

thank you for playing & for coming back to write a comment! i hope your day is lovely too. 

(+2)

Thanks for making these games! I honestly don't think I've ever related to a character as much as Haru and her internal decision making process, and I cried a fair bit at just how familiar some of the scenarios she found herself in were. amazing, amazing, amazing games that I'm sure I'll find myself coming back to time and time again

tl;dr: im in this photo and i like it

thank you for playing them! i'm very glad you could relate to haru & i hope you enjoy the game again if you decide to come back to it.

Thank you for making these games! I just finished and I really appreciate the message in the Special Thanks. Hopefully the world continues to grow to be a better place for us all :)

(+2)

thank you for playing these games! let's hope for a better world together.

(+1)

Hey Npckc, thanks for making these games... they have helped me feel accepted even in a world of hate that is deep south Texas... So thank you, and I hope others like me who find these end up enjoying them just as much as I did.

hey, thank you for playing. i hope you can find people around you in real life who can help you feel accepted too.

Has anyone else had trouble running the game? for some reason the game starts just fine but all the text is unreadable. there's just blurry lines where it should be. i downloaded the right version for my computer so it's not that. i have the game jam version of One Night, Hot Springs and that works so idk what's up.

(3 edits)

hi, would you be able to share info about the computer you're using to play (os, &c.) & links to screenshots through https://ayearofsprings.crd.co/#contact? i haven't had any reports of this from anyone else & i'd like to fix the issue if i can. if any error is displayed, please share that in your message too if you don't mind.

edit: this issue has been fixed but i'm just going to note potential fixes here in case anybody else has issues!

1) check that graphic card drivers are up to date & update if necessary
2) boot the game while holding shift (or press shift+g in-game) & select a different graphics renderer
3) try toggling fullscreen by pressing "f" 

I played the Android version, and I loved this game, especially since the character is a transgender girl, just like me.

thank you for playing & i'm glad you loved it (:

Deleted 16 days ago

thanks for playing one night, hot springs as your first itch.io game! i'm honoured & i'm glad you enjoyed the epilogue too. i'm not currently looking for a korean translator but thank you for the offer. 

Aww, what a beautiful ending.  I played the first game on steam about a year ago and I'm so glad I got the trilogy.  Very sweet and wholesome!  Very much looking forward to any games you make in the future.

thank you for playing! i hope you will enjoy the other games i make too 

(+1)

After having played all the stories separately (starting with 'Spring leaves no flowers') I was excited to see this compilation released.

It offers a wonderful opportunity to share the struggles in vulnerability of 3 friends presented in a non-judgmental, relatable and comforting way with a touch of light-hearted humour. The added epilogue is just icing on the cake and a well-deserved happy end for the characters. Absolutely loved every moment of it.

I am glad to support such touching and earnest work. I appreciate the effort that went into creating such an expressive, unique style both in graphics and music. Small touches in font selection and sound effects (button bops ^^) really add to the charming and cozy tone. Also loved the animated gallery and music player (the ringtones are fire and I think they suit each personality).

But there is more than just the art style - I believe games can test not only our minds and reflexes but also our capacity to relate and empathize with others, as clearly demonstrated here (I had similar experience with an old Flash visual novel 'Air Pressure').

Finally, if it's ok with you, I would be delighted if you shared your thoughts on motivation and production process (I am familiar with Ren'py and FL studio, but would like to get into jam culture).

Once again thank you for the time and effort you put in your work. Surely this becomes a ray of hope for so many individuals, who will find the representation and acceptance they so badly need. People like you remind me to be open about our environment and craft. Ultimately, I hope stories like these will inspire us to be true to ourselves and share what's best in us.

(+2)

thank you for playing! spring leaves no flowers is the third in the trilogy so i'm glad you still enjoyed the game starting there. i've written a bit about my game dev process before as a devlog for one of my earlier games, magical witch bell: https://npckc.itch.io/magicalwitchbell/devlog/105006/two-years-since-a-postmorte... - hopefully this matches what you're looking for!

(+1)

Actually, starting with third instalment created some eureka moments when going back to play previous games. Also, when I later replayed the trilogy in order I've caught some details I missed the first time through (e.g. where did Haru's necklace come from).

Concerning the postmortem - this is exactly what I was looking for! Thanks for sharing. I see that the process is not always straightforward, but you have to keep on going. There is just one more thing that intrigues me - how do you choose which jams to participate in?

if the jam interests me and i have time, i join (: not too much thought put into it, honestly! 

Thanks for the game, I really Loved and cry with the perfect story i really want the poster now but i have a question why don't Have brazilian portuguese Language in google play we can play in portuguese

(1 edit)

thank you for playing. the game isn't fully translated in brazilian portuguese so it isn't available at this time.

(+2)

Thank you for the games, they're all very adorable and informative, and the last game, Spring Leaves No Flowers made me realize I was aro/ace. :)

(+1)

i'm happy that spring leaves no flowers helped you figure stuff out! thank you for playing. 

it's 1am and i am crying. thank you.

(+2)

sorry to make you cry, but i hope you enjoyed the game.

Deleted 8 days ago

ah ok! i'm glad you liked it! ☺️

Such a heartwarming and emotional experience! This game collection is just so comforting and yet it doesn't slow down when it comes to its themes. It brings in such a great representation! I have nothing aside from endless positive comments about this.

thank you for this very kind comment 😊

Also, a suggestion I have is that I think the soundtrack should be put on spotify.

I Plan on buying this bundle soon to have this trilogy on all of my devices. But I just need to say how much I love the storytelling and characters. I relate to Haru the most because of her personality and how she acts towards Manami and Erika. I see some of my friends in the other characters but overall I think this game is amazing and I will continue to support the creator throughout the rest of their games.

i'm happy you enjoyed the story & the characters! there are no plans to put the soundtrack on spotify at this time.

unfortunately i cannot buy this bundle as i don't have any way to pay, but i played the three games individually and i love the way you showed each character !! personally i related to erika and haru the most. it was also very eyeopening, because in australia it's more accepted (which isn't saying much, honestly) to be trans (or non-binary, like myself) unlike in japan. also the graphics were adorable and it was just very pretty games overall !!!

thank you for playing! i'm glad you liked the graphics.

Your work is amazing. Thank you for sharing such an honest and moving story. 

thank you for playing! 💐 

(1 edit)

As a person who is scarily similar to Haru, not ony personality wise, struggle wise but also my hair color and everything, this made me feel so much, i really loved the characters, the style and the story telling.


Thank you for making such a masterpiece.


Ps: If ur interested i can also help translate the game into dutch

thank you for playing the game & the offer to translate! however i don't have the budget for a dutch translation currently & am not looking for free translations. 

Thats fully understandable, i loved your game, im looking forward to seeing more in the future :D

ahh this series made me feel a lot of emotions <3 even if i am not a transgender person as haru, i identified so much with her anxious personality. seeing my social anxiety reflected in her character gives me a lot of comfort.

thanks for creating a year of springs!! and reminding me that the world can be kind too 

thank you for playing! i'm glad that haru could give you some comfort 💜

It's been quite an experience playing this series since the first jam when you submitted One Night, Hot Springs. I'm happy how far this series has come! Just wanted to say thank you for what you've done~ <3

thanks for being around since the beginning! <3

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