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My favorite eroge of 2016


Tyr

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I wanted to wait until the year is over before I write my list for this year, but of course I haven't had the time to actually look at the December releases and now the year is over. Luckily, there isn't much interesting for me anyway.
Before we start, just let me mention some noteworthy December titles:

  • Venus Blood Ragnarok could be a nice game, but I don't really like the Venus Blood series, and as some kind of sequel it probably won't win me over anyway.
  • I have played the trial of Meguru Sekai de Towanaru Chikai wo and it really didn't impress me. Looked like an even cheaper version of Izumo 4. And Izumo 4 was already a letdown last year. The RPG mechanics of Izumo 4 are very simple and Meguru Sekai de seems even simpler. But that is not all, contrary to Izumo 4, this time the game also looks pretty ugly! It that the reason why Yamamoto Kazue changed her name to  Yamamoto ☆ Kazue for this? Well, I probably will play it nonetheless because I don't like to judge something I haven't really played, but eh, not in the near future.

That's it for December. The rest doesn't interest me or I already know it will be bad (You can't fool me Moonstone!). Did I just say I don't judge something I haven't played? Eh, whatever... :maple:

But now some honorable mentions of games that actually looked interesting but I haven't had the time to read them, so they won't be in my 2016 list:

  • Dungeons & Daimeiwaku: I've read the trial, but haven't found the time to read the actual game. I'm sure it's good but it's kind of demotivating for me to read an RPG without any gameplay, heh.
  • Iwaihime: Ryukishi07 and horror should be exactly what I'm looking for but for some reason I have this untouched on my hdd for a year now. Maybe I miss the Ryukishi07-art, since it doesn't look as good with generic moeblobs. :reeee:
  • Trianthology: Now I have the art, but not a full Ryukishi07 game, haha. Still, I have to read this sometime soon.
  • Kanojo * Step: This could probably be the "Best Charage" of 2016 as far as I have seen it. The humor is great, something that's really missing in pretty much every other modern charage. It's a shame that the genre charage has such a low priority for me, so I haven't really read much of this VN so far.

Now I mention some games people might expect in my list of 2016's best eroge, but I actually found them to be only mediocre:

  • Shi ni Iku Kimi, Yakata ni Mebuku Zouo: Yeah, I wasn't as excited about this as everyone else. I do not fetishize gore. I like death as an element of a thrilling story, but death in Nikuniku has no impact. There is no meaning in killing someone when they can't die.
  • Baka Dakedo Chinchin Shaburu no Dake wa Jouzu na Chii-chan: This game has a Genre-Shift tag of 3.0 on vndb and some people claim it would be different than what you expect it to be.
    Spoiler: It's exactly what it looks like! WTF are the people talking about? lol
  • Maitetsu: Borefest and not even usable as a lolige. Really only interesting for train otakus.

 

Now let's start with the list of maybe not necessarily the best but the most impressive eroge of 2016, for me at least:

27459.jpgEroge of the Year: Natsu no Kusari

Best game without a doubt, there is no other contender here. If I would make a Top 5 of 2017, the second place would already be many, many levels under this one. It's so good (or all the other recent games are just so bad, lol).

I have already written walls of text in other threads about this game so I won't repeat myself here. I will just say that this game is exactly what I'm looking for when I read an eroge, the reason why I even started with this medium.

Great characterization and the perfect use of narration, music, visuals and voices makes this one of the most compelling short stories I have read in years.

 

29582.jpgBest NTR Eroge: Dearest Blue

The lack of elf is really showing and I certainly can't say that any LiLiM game is really good, but at least with Dearest Blue LiLiM improved on their formula and made it its best game so far.

We still have some obvious "Do you want to get NTR'd"-choices, but they are not as in-your-face as in previous titles. Some choices make you wonder what will actually happen if you go this route and that at least is an improvement. In some instances there is some believable drama and especially one route is good where you can cheer for both, the protagonist and the rival because both characters are likable. The main heroine is also well-characterized, being an independent and strong woman without going too bitchy or slutty.

Still, not everything is good. Pretty much every male character except the aforementioned one is a one-dimensional evil villain. The biggest problem however is that the story is build around some kind of NTR/death-game where all the players need to outwit each other ... but in the end there are no mind games or twists happening! Heck, even I could probably win this game because every other character is so bad at this, not having a plan or making retarded moves. What a disappointment! Read this for the relationship drama, not for the death game.

 

Best Modern Oldschool Eroge: Ryuudouji Shimon no Inbou

This might be an unpopular opinion, but I really think that the writing in many of the latest Mink-games is topnotch. Really, if Mink-games weren't conceptually so limited (being only nukige), they could be really great.

Why is that? Is it because Mink is such an old company that they still carry on old writing traditions which were established in the Golden Age of eroge? That at least would explain why Ryuudouji Shimon no Inbou is so good when it conceptually shouldn't be!

Don't misunderstand me, Ryuudouji Shimon no Inbou is not a good slave-training eroge. There is no real SLG gameplay here, instead the only choice the player has is to visit 1 of 20 locations every day hoping that some kind of event happens there. There is no indication which area you have to visit, neither in script nor in the interface, it's completely by chance. Save-scumming and blindly gathering events at its finest, huh.

But if you can look behind this (preferably with a walkthrough), you will find a game that feels like the late 90s. Mainly because this is a blatant clone of 99's Yakin Byoutou. It's pretty much "Night Shift School Girls". Aside from the setting that is now a school, we have the same kind of characters, the same storyline and the same development Yakin Byoutou had. And it's great, because that formula still works 17 years later! The ugly main character, who has just enough understanding of the human psyche to get what he wants, the pure maidens who fall into his traps, not because they are sluts but because they are believable corrupted, and the evil female mastermind who is probably even worse than the main character. It's beautiful. The nostalgia is strong with this one.

 

28999.jpgBest Dark and Edgy Eroge: Tokage no Shippo Kiri

I'm cheating here a bit because the game was released in November 2015. But since the fandisc was released in January last year which means the full experience was only available to us in 2016, I see it as 2016 game.

There is not much to say here, what Derg not already said. Games like this prove that even low-budget publisher can make good games, if they just try. CYCLET is not Black Cyc, but it tries nonetheless to be something special and succeeds in setting itself apart from all the other low budget publisher. Maybe that is the reason we only had one CYCLET game in 2016; they emphasize on quality, not quantity.

 

28277.jpgBest RPG: Dungeon of Regalias

Let's not talk about the story and the characters. They are terrible, like in every Astronauts Sirius game. But damn is the gameplay addicting and actually good. Like in, really, really good.

This is probably one of the best ero-dungeon crawler existing. They did everything right with this one. Hard difficulty available from start. Skills as "items" which can be equipped so you can change your build without any resetting of skill points like in other games. Monsters who all act differently thus forcing you to change your strategy and character builds and party constantly. Great game.

 

 

27186.jpgBest SRPG: Sankai Ou no Yubiwa

I'm probably the only one, but ... I actually liked 2016's Eushully game. Yeah, really. Ok, it wasn't really a good SRPG; it actually had many flaws, like being far too easy and exploitable and the routes being too similar to each other... but... I liked the concept. Having six main characters who all represent a different kind of approach to the Ero-RPG genre is really something I wish more games would do. I hate the good guy, the antihero and the maou archetype, and sadly most Eushully games have one of these three as their main character. But Sankai Ou has also three other, more interesting protagonists to choose from. For example, I always wanted the angels to win in an Eushully game, and finally I have the opportunity to do this because the obligatory fallen-angel storyline is already covered in the other routes. Nice.

 

Biggest disappointment: Extravaganza ~Mushigurui Hen~

I was so hyped for this one. The first true Black Cyc game after 5 years of absence. Written by Banya Izumi who we could trust with the task of continuing a beloved series, right? Right?

No, it's awful. This game turned out to be an abomination which is quite remarkable because Black Cyc already milked the Extravaganza series with bad sidestories back when Black Cyc was still good for the most part. And Mushigurui Hen is even worse than these cheap nukige spinoffs. At least with cheap nukige fandisc, we know we get something bad. Mushigurui Hen on the other hand could have been good. It could have been awesome. But it wasn't.

So what went wrong? You have these great characters with their epic background stories, but what do they do with them? Putting them in school, because school life is, as we all now, the most important thing ever. And if a character is too old for school, just make them into rich snobs whose only problem in life is being too old (meaning being 23 years old) and lamenting about not having the time to go to the cinema with friends because work (meaning being CEO and chilling all the day in the office).

And if that wasn't bad enough, they also retcon a character death because this character was very popular back then and we need him for funny slice of life scenes now, yay.

The most offending thing however is how this "sequel" actually takes place after the second arc of the original Extravaganza, which means before the last third of the original game. And all the important character events in the third arc which really were the heart of the Extravaganza story apparently don't take place in this timeline. Instead, we get inferior and meaningless drama with derailed characters in Mushigurui Hen which is apparently now the canon timeline. Hurray.

 

Biggest insult: Everything released by Akabei Soft 3

I'm not going into this now, but literally every AKB3 game this year greatly offended me, just as Silky's Plus' games did last year. Let's just say that AKB3 makes games which represent everything that's wrong with modern eroge and have nothing left of what made eroge once great. (I might write a post explaining this statement in the near future.)
It saddens me how popular these games are. A dark prospect for 2017.

 

7 Comments


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Haha! It amuses me to no end how my little thread about Natsu no Kusari influenced several people to read it and enjoy it utterly (though I haven't read it myself, lol).

That's what I call "butterfly effect"! One puny mad scientist drops the rock downhill, and chaos ensues! MWAHAHAHAHAHA!

Edited by Okarin
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I found in Natsu no Kusari the same problem that when i read Euphoria, the emotions that i was supposed to feel in the h-scenes don't come out, i have a chronic problem when i read works of this type, my lack of empathy make me see all in a too logical way. Also the whole point of he only succeed in life if destroy she, simply don't buy me.

The categories that you write are not too usual to me, interesting seeing people with compete different tastes.

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Well Norleas... it's okay not to feel empathy towards this kind of protagonist. That doesn't mean you aren't empathic, of course.

Or should you feel empathy towards the gang in A Clockwork Orange? Their "antics" are displayed with a lot of detail, however. But it's also to augment the impact of the story.

This kind of protagonist is pretty sociopathic, and sociopaths aren't exactly loved by society, nor do they have an easy time.

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Meh, only Dearest Blue is good out of your list. Judging by how much you dislike Lilim games, its not surprising how much our tastes differ, at the very least when it comes to fap games. Do you even like NTR games? Judging by your priorities when describing NTR games you probably don't. Well, Fuwanovel isn't exactly where people with that kind of fetish gather anyways.

Edited by BobJones2
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Ah, I have to follow my own content or I don't get notified when new comments were posted :notlikemiya:

On 2017/1/1 at 10:04 PM, RedK said:

Thanks for the cuck-ge recommendation!

I don't think it's a cuck-ge to be honest! :wahaha:
One of the reasons I do like Dearest Blue quite a bit is because the protagonist is not a cuck. Not really. He might be a hetare sometimes, but I don't think there is any scene where he actually feels aroused by being NTR'd. Well, of course not, being NTR'd in his case means he lost the game and will die, lol. So the cuck fetish has really no part in this story.

On 2017/3/18 at 6:46 AM, BobJones2 said:

Meh, only Dearest Blue is good out of your list. Judging by how much you dislike Lilim games, its not surprising how much our tastes differ, at the very least when it comes to fap games. Do you even like NTR games? Judging by your priorities when describing NTR games you probably don't. Well, Fuwanovel isn't exactly where people with that kind of fetish gather anyways.

Well, I deliberately chose to call this article "MY favorite eroge" so I hope you can excuse my shit taste. :notlikemiya:

The problem isn't really whether I like NTR or not, it's more the fact that I mainly fap to characters, settings and events, and less to simple fetishes. For example, cheap NTR games where the only story is that some bland girl cheats on some bland cuck with a bland stud don't do anything for me. However, if the same story is told with well-developed characters and relationships my D might be exploding. Like with elf's games.
I know that this is not the way most NTR fans look at this genre, but it's a very arguable genre anyway, haha.

Dearest Blue works for me, because the heroine feels believable, the drama is serious and the raping/cheating makes perfect sense in context. In most other LiLiM games, the purpose of setting, characters and choices is much more obvious thus missing the tension so my D can build its own tension. :nokia:

I'm pretty open to all kind of fetishes, but what I really don't like is bad storytelling. Even in my porn! 

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