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Karenai Sekai to Owaru Hana and VN of the Month Announcement


Clephas

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... I'm going to be blunt about this... I can't  believe this was written by the same guy who wrote Nekopara, Sakura Bitmap, and Strawberry Nauts.  This VN has an overwhelming degree of impact compared to his other works, to the point where I'm even willing to consider it a kamige.  Music, music-usage, story, presentation, art, and art usage are all at their highest levels, combining to create a nakige whose impact is far out of proportion to its length (which is only about seven hours, for me). 

I honestly wasn't expecting the emotional impact of this VN.  In terms of this quality, it approaches Houkago no Futekikakusha, without being an utsuge... I literally cried throughout the entire game, to the point where my sinuses are swollen and my eyes bloodshot.  From the very beginning, this game makes no pretense at being anything other than what it is... a cathartic trip full of love, despair, sorrow, and loss with a drop of hope. 

I won't spoil you as to the central concept, even though it is tempting.  Based on the fact that no details of the setting other than the characters are revealed in any detail on either the official website or the Getchu page, in addition to my own experience, I can say straight out that this is a VN best enjoyed without someone giving you details to the setting or situation.  I will say that it is a fantasy setting, based in a world that has early nineteenth-century tech (no guns that I saw though), based on the presence of an ice box and ice sellers in the game.  This is also based on the fact that matches exist but electric lights apparently don't, since the characters are using candles and oil lamps. 

This game is pretty short, mostly due to its structure, where heroine 'paths' only come into existence after the main story is over, as epilogues for each of the four individual heroines (Haru, Yuki, Kotose, and Ren).  There is no 'true' heroine in this game, for those are wondering.  All the heroines are quite literally equal, though the protagonist is a bit more intimate with Ren and Haru, which is probably more of a reflection of the writer's preferences than anything else.

This game is 100% 'business', including the slice-of-life scenes.  Not one scene in this VN is wasted on something other than portraying the characters' suffering and joy or progressing the story.  To be blunt, if this game weren't so perfectly designed, I'd probably be calling it 'bare-bones' in that aspect.  That lack of wasted time is actually of immense help, as it prevents the phenomenon of 'contempt due to familiarity' that tends to occur when a VN has an excess of 'meaningless' slice-of-life scenes. 

This VN isn't humor-centric, so don't expect a lot of laughs out of it.  The heroines have serious issues, and even in everyday life, those issues peek out from beneath the surface on a regular basis.  As a result, humorous situations are relatively limited after the setting's central issue gets introduced to you and you come to understand the protagonist's objective.

Unfortunately, there is little more I can say about this VN without ruining it for you.  I can say it is a first-class nakige, and I can say it is a cry-fest designed to suck the tears out of you with a virtual vacuum cleaner.  However, that is just a repeat of what I said above.  I do advise that anyone who goes into this VN should do so without excessive prior knowledge, as it is a VN that is best enjoyed with a 'clean slate' the first time around.

VN of the month November 2016

Karenai Sekai to Owaru Hana

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This game is in the grey area to me, though have his own qualities and much potential, the principal point, the emotional impact, don't hit me in nowhere. Some questions that appear and are not explained about the fantasy elements don't make anything positive, the whole background seems too weak to make a foundation in my opinion.
The structure is bad too, with rushed relations to give h-scenes in the epilogue and somethings that are resolved in the blink of a eye, if you don't need romance, don't make the mc go to a romantic relationship, make they solve the problems and go to a normal end or make a kinect novel and give more time to the building. The sadness that i was supposed to feel don't appear principally because i don't have much connection and relation with the characters and the game don't give me time to this.

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7 hours ago, Norleas said:

This game is in the grey area to me, though have his own qualities and much potential, the principal point, the emotional impact, don't hit me in nowhere. Some questions that appear and are not explained about the fantasy elements don't make anything positive, the whole background seems too weak to make a foundation in my opinion.
The structure is bad too, with rushed relations to give h-scenes in the epilogue and somethings that are resolved in the blink of a eye, if you don't need romance, don't make the mc go to a romantic relationship, make they solve the problems and go to a normal end or make a kinect novel and give more time to the building. The sadness that i was supposed to feel don't appear principally because i don't have much connection and relation with the characters and the game don't give me time to this.

The romantic elements are mostly tacked on for the sake of tradition/for those who can't stand VNs without romance, from what I could tell.  As for explaining the fantasy elements, this was closer to a fairy tale or surrealistic fantasy style, rather than a chuuni or high fantasy style, where the world mechanics are deep and complex.  As an example of another VN that has similar aspects of deliberately vague fantasy elements, I can point to Tsubasa o Kudasai, where the mechanics of what was going on frequently made no sense or were deliberately left unresolved to avoid infodumping. 

I've experienced a few other VNs of this type, where character development is a lot less important than the situation itself.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.  There are some types of readers who absolutely have to have in-depth character development, and for people like that, a short kinetic novel (which this mostly amounts to) is almost never satisfying. 

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I started reading it the other day and plan on finishing soon. I am amazed at how enjoyable it is. 

It is not the type of game I'm usually into, but the pacing and the issues are really well done and I'm enjoying every minute of it. 

Already cried, too. 

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7 hours ago, Nosebleed said:

I started reading it the other day and plan on finishing soon. I am amazed at how enjoyable it is. 

It is not the type of game I'm usually into, but the pacing and the issues are really well done and I'm enjoying every minute of it. 

Already cried, too. 

Looking at the game objectively, I probably should have objected to some aspects of it... but it was just too emotional right from the beginning.  As I said in the post, it is very 'bare bones', since they don't create the massive volume of side-scenes most VNs use for basic character development.  In this case, that turned out to be a positive thing, since Nekopara's writer apparently has the skills to manage it.  I guess it shouldn't be a surprise, considering how Strawberry Nauts was a massive hit in Japan.

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