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About this blog

This is a blog primarily focusing on but not limited to VNs.  It is primarily designed to express my opinion on otaku media (jrpgs, anime, manga, LNs, VNs, etc), individual VNs, and otaku community issues.   Most of the posts are related to my VN of the Month and Random VN columns, originally started in threads in the forums. 

As of March of 2017, I'm also looking for people to help with VN of the Month.

Entries in this blog

Random VN: Ryuukishi Bloody Saga

Ryuukishi Bloody Saga might very well be the best unique work Akabei Soft 3 has created in the time since ABS2 forced a bunch of subsidiaries to merge to create it.  It is a work I also come back to every few years simply because it holds a unique place in my heart.   Ryuukishi is the sequel to Ryakudatsusha no In'en, a Clock-up style super-violent H-horror VN written expressly for the purpose of setting up things for Ryuukishi.  As such, to understand this VN, you have to understand the ev

Clephas

Clephas in VNs

VNs and Me Today

I've had numerous comments from people who were asking, 'Do you still play VNs?' in the last year or so because I hardly post anymore.   When I do, it is usually litrpg, random commentary, or maybe one game a month.  The short answer is yes.  The full answer is a bit more complicated. First, I should note that a lot of this is about timing... to be slightly more specific, a confluence of factors that created a singularity of me just not posting anymore.  The events in question are my increa

Clephas

Clephas in VNs

Random VN: Duelist x Engage

Duelist Engage is one of a number of VNs I was pretty sure I underrated relative to my time doing VN of the Month.  The fact that the VN stuck in my mind even almost a decade later says that this supposition was most likely correct.  Thankfully, after replaying it (after so long it was mostly new to me) I found that this supposition was correct. Before I dig into story and character issues, I need to note that one way this VN stands out over modern charage is the expressiveness of the heroi

Clephas

Clephas in VNs

Waga Himegimi ni Eikan o

This is the newest game by Minato Soft, the makers of Majikoi.  As per usual, I'll be straight with yall and say that I thought this would end up essentially being a slice-of-life failure like a lot of Minato Soft's non-Majikoi VNs.  However, this game is actually much closer to a chuunige in nature than I anticipated.  In the end, I gave this one of the highest ratings I've given in a long while, but there are some issues, which I'll mention farther along. Wagahime's protagonist is a young

Clephas

Clephas in VNs

VNs I still Remember, no matter how much Time Has passed

This might seem like an odd choice for a blog post, but it should be noted that, after more then twelve years and seven hundred VNs, remembering each and every one is impossible.  In fact, I hardly recall roughly 70% of all the VNs I've played, and less than 10% are memorable enough that I consider replaying them once in a great while.  I'm somewhat infamous for my lists, but I figured one more wouldn't hurt.  Remember, these are the VNs I still remember to the point where I can state almost eve

Clephas

Clephas in VNs

The problem with translated and weabooist Xianxia

While reading litrpgs, I sometimes come across ones that stray into the realms of Xianxia or are simply Xianxia mislabeled as litrpgs.  Xianxia is a genre of Chinese-origin, creating a system of magic and abilities based off of Qigong practices.  Technically, stuff like Naruto and Hunter X Hunter would fall into the realm of Xianxia, given its use of many of the same concepts. Xianxia books have a number of common issues, in my opinion.  Some of them are quite enjoyable, but even the enjoya

Clephas

Clephas in Xianxia

Litrpg series: Apocalypse Gates and Alpha Alpha World

Recently, I've been devouring anything written by Daniel Shinhofen, the writer of the Binding Words series I recommended in a previous post.  Shinhofen is a harem specialist that can vary from having non-existent ero to full-on BDSM in his stories, but a common element to all of them is that all his protagonists end up with a harem and that harem is happy (for the most part).   Lest I make that sound like he scrimps on story, the very reverse is the case.  Every one of his series is extreme

Clephas

Clephas in Litrpg

Senkou no Clarias

It was remarked by Veshurik recently that it seemed like I wasn't really around anymore... but that isn't really the case.  I still play VNs, but the fact is, I don't play many new VNs that I haven't already blogged about yet.  I simply can't muster enough interest to play most of the new stuff that comes out, simply because there just isn't that much that looks interesting coming out at any given time.   Senkou no Clarias, by Team Baldrhead, was the game I thought would break through my boredom

Clephas

Clephas

Litrpg: Everybody Loves Large Chests

Everybody Loves Large Chests (the series) by Neven Iliev is probably the most horrifying dark comedy fantasy I've ever read.  I laughed almost constantly throughout the first five books (what I've read) of this series... simply because it is just so far out there that it insulates you from the sheer horror of what is going on. This series is focused on the antics and life of an aberrant, sociopathic, homicidal and ever-hungry mimic (yes, the treasure-chest monster) named Boxxy T Morningwood

Clephas

Clephas

Akatsuki Yureru Koi Akari

This is the third game in Crystalia's series based on a world where a sport has grown up around using spiritual swords and a prequel to the original game, Kizuna Kirameku Koi Iroha.  For those who haven't played the other games, I can say that you might or might  not get more out of this game by playing the others first, as playing the original spoils you on the winner of the tournament and a few other issues.  On the other hand, this game also fills in a lot of gaps on characters from the origi

Clephas

Clephas

litrpg author: William D. Arand

The Litrpg genre has a bunch of subsets, from the gamelit (characters are actually in a game) and portal fantasy  (go through a portal to a game-like world) to Wuxia/xanxia style cultivation and anime-style harem setups. William D Arand is an interesting writer...  He is definitely on the harem side of things, because all of his protagonists end up with a harem of women who are both devoted to him and end up running his life, as well as being deadly, amoral and more than a little crazy.  Mo

Clephas

Clephas

Ren'ai x Royale

This is the latest game by ASa Project, a company that rose up during the Golden Age of VNs, making a name for themselves as solid comedy charage makers.  To this day, their style hasn't changed significantly, but in some ways that gives them an advantage over modern charage, which tend to be less comedy-focused (actually, most newer charage makers don't seem to know how to make the readers laugh anymore).   This game is focused on the harem of a young man named Hirotaka.  The situation is,

Clephas

Clephas

Top Ten VN/Anime/video game villains/antagonists

In action stories, often the story's quality is determined by the quality of the antagonist as much as the quality of the main characters.  The antagonist acts and the main characters react, creating the drama that pulls at our heart strings and excites us.  The more complex the story, the more likely the need for a strong antagonist will exist, at least in modern fiction.  I decided to put down my top ten and my reasons for making them my top ten here.  These are my top ten, but there isn't a p

Clephas

Clephas

Shiranui's Journey (Evolimit): The Tale of a Hero

Be warned, this is full of spoilers for one of my favorite VNs, Evolimit.  Shiranui Yoshikazu is one of my favorite protagonists of all time, and I thought it would be good to just lay out why I loved the guy from beginning to end.           Shiranui's past   The Disaster (MAJOR Spoilers.  Don't read this part unless you have finished at least Kazuna's ending) Even entirely ignoring the events of the main story, Shiranui's story is one of quiet he

Clephas

Clephas

Litrpg series: Emirillia Chronicles

The Emirillia Chronicles by Michael Chatfield (incidentally my favorite litrpg author), the writer of the Ten Realms series, is one of the more fascinating ones I've come across.  Unlike the Ten Realms, which is fairly unfocused due to Erik and Rugrat's generalized motivations based on their personal ethics, desires, and whims, Emirillia has a somewhat clearer goal for the characters.   In the series, humanity was defeated by an alien empire called the Jukal, but the Jukal almost lost every

Clephas

Clephas

Drapri Guu-Ta-Life

Really, the name of this game says it all... 'A Dragon Princess's Lazy Life'.  This game centers around Takeru, a young martial artist NEET who will do anything to avoid real work, his osananajimi Suzuka, and the dragon he picked up off the street, Haru.  I'll be honest, this game is pretty similar to Nekonin in length, if not in quality (it is slightly better), and I mostly enjoyed it because the double-boke of Takeru and Haru is so hilarious.  Neither Takeru nor Haru has anything resembling co

Clephas

Clephas

Steam: Silverio Trinity append stories

A few weeks ago, I picked up the Steam versions of Silverio Vendetta and Silverio Trinity.  My reasons in the latter case were pretty self-explanatory... I wanted to read the append after story that Light so cavalierly and cruelly only included with the all-ages version previously only available on the Vita.  Considering that the after story append serves as a bridge between Trinity and Ragnarok, as well as giving you what amounts to a four to five hour extension to the true route... I can say i

Clephas

Clephas

Litrpg series: Project Crysalis

Since I'm still messing around with Cabbit's new game, I thought I'd drop a short review of a litrpg series I just finished reading. Project Crysalis is based in a future where Earth has been abandoned (not because it is ruined anymore, but because the first non-Terrestrial human nation forced people to leave) in favor of living in colonies all across our solar system.  The main political and scientific power in the first three books is Lunar, a nation built on the Moon that began when a pr

Clephas

Clephas

Deciding the VN I WILL play this month

I haven't decided which of these VNs I will play this month, but I thought I'd let yall in on my thought processes. Basic Impressions (based off of previews, official pages, and Getchu pages) Hamidashi Creative- This looks like a solid charage, just from the way they actually decided to handle the intros. https://vndb.org/v27449/chars?view=2S-7Nx23xHY#chars 1) No protagonist intro- Speaking from experience, when the protagonist doesn't even have a brief introduction on the officia

Clephas

Clephas

Reflecting on my Otaku Origins

I took my first steps onto the road of the otaku in 1992, when I watched the poorly dubbed (all dubs were godawful back then) Record of Lodoss War Volume 1 OVA VCR tape.  Now, I was already a heavy fantasy addict, having been introduced to the Forgotten Realms and Dragonlance in 1990, and my obsession was at its peak at the time.  When I watched Record of Lodoss War, I saw the typical 'elven maiden with human hero' romance in a new way (incidentally, this is a pretty typical romantic theme in th

Clephas

Clephas

Seishun Fragile

Seishun Fragile is the latest of Purple Software's VNs.  Purple Software is famous these days primarily for powerful nakige/borderline utsuge like Aoi Tori, Amatsutsumi, and Hapymaher.  However, they also are responsible for Chrono Clock and Mirai Nostalgia which, while having an actual plot, are closer to charage than their more plot-centric brethren.  This game is much closer to Mirai Nostalgia in style (based on a few comments inside the story, it is probably based some years after the latest

Clephas

Clephas

Getting back into VNs after time away

For most people who play VNs, taking a break is a normal thing.  Even taking a hiatus of a few months or a year seems to be standard for many in our little community. For ten years, for me, it wasn't. My new addiction to litrpgs succeeded in breaking me of my compulsive VN-reading for the first time in a decade.  While some might consider this a bad thing (and have told me so), others have said that it was a good one.  Personally, as I've started playing Purple Soft's latest game, Seis

Clephas

Clephas

Litrpg series I've liked so far

I have only recently 'discovered' the litrpg genre (for those unfamiliar with this, the most similar examples I can give are Overlord, SAO, and Log Horizon) of novels.  As such, I'm not going to presume to review things like stat systems and how the stories 'played'.  It would be ridiculous for me to do so (since I'm not a min-max freak who loves all that math), and it would also be boring as hell to listen to here, lol.  I will note some classic tropes:  Protagonists who jump to wrong conclusio

Clephas

Clephas

Why I haven't posted recently? (a new addiction)

Needless to say, when I hit my latest speed bump in the form of another partial burnout on VNs, I was left wondering what to do with all that free time.  For about forty hours of that time, it was Ghost of Tsushima, but when that was over, I accidentally picked up my first litrpg on Kindle Unlimited... and oh god, I almost wish I hadn't. The problem, when I analyze it in retrospect, is that my fondness for anime like SAO, Log Horizon, and Overlord had primed me perfectly, my addictive perso

Clephas

Clephas

Random VN: Baldr Sky Zero

Baldr Sky Zero is an entirely different animal from Baldr Sky Dive. I say this as a warning for those who are looking for a complete duplicate of the experience. Baldr Sky Dive was very much like a post-apocalypse apocalypse story in some ways, with a bunch of revenge thrown in. There is much to recommend to both duologies but they are fundamentally different in some ways. This review is of the first half of the Zero duology, which covers the Sakura, Kei, and Fran paths. I chose to review i

Clephas

Clephas

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