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Lamento -Beyond The Void- [VN Review]

SeniorBlitz

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This game…

I have so much to talk about, good things and… bad things.

If you don’t know, Lamento is considered somewhat of a Kamige in the BL community; I lot of people love it and glorify it as some kind of perfect masterpiece.

But this is no masterpiece.

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Protagonist seeing the cursed markings for the first time.

1. The Premise and Plot:

Konoe (the MC) lives in a small village called Karou, where, because of a phenomenon called “The Void” has its inhabitants practice acts of cannibalism to survive. Even with such conditions, Konoe insists on living in the village because of his attachment to his home.

One day, our protagonist starts having dreams of snakes entering his body, and after four nights of nightmares, cursed markings appeared on his body, and, to make things worst he was selected to be the next sacrifice in line.

With things taking a turn for the worst, Konoe is obligated to leave his village in order to look for answers…

Overall the premise really caught my interest, even with the slow pace on the start of the game; they manage to establish a sense of tension and mystery that kept my interested through the common route. The sense of journey as Konoe goes from location to location was also pretty good, and I was curious to know how each city and place worked within the setting.

2. The Characters:

Lamento has a nice amount of characters, mostly males because, y’know… dystopian BL setting clichés, but, there are some females that get to shine and even have their own backstories which is pretty cool.

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Bardo, Rai and Asato respectively. In the middle is Konoe our MC.

There are three main heroes in Lamento, Rai, a very cold and somewhat arrogant cat from the city of Setsura; he is a Classic Tsundere which is a plus in my book. XoP

We then have Asato, a shy and recluse cat from the remote and conservative village of Kira, with a child-like personality and very kind attitude, he stole my heart from the moment he spoke (I love the the “Adorkable” archetype way too much). BEST BOI :mare:!

And finally we have the “bi-daddy” tiger, also from Setsura, Bardo, he is pretty much Motomi from Togainu no Chi with cooking abilities. Kek. Though he was enjoyable.

We also have Leaks’, our antagonist, the poet, a mysterious figure who guides Konoe on bad times and other characters like the demons, but, I won’t talk much about because of laziness SPOILERS!!!!

We also have Konoe, our MC, way better lead than Akira, even though he does suffer from the “uke in distress” syndrome that I hate, but, he does some courageous things (especially in Asato's good end).

3. Art and Music:

As expected from a budget Nitro+ title, Lamento has high production values, the art is pretty good and most of the in-game characters have at least a sprite to them, and the pre-rendered backgrounds are an improvement over N+C’s  previous game (though that may be due to the fact the Lamento is on a fantasy world with forests and such, instead of a urban dystopian setting).

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Rai and Konoe on the city of Ransen.

The music is simply incredible, with varied and fitting tracks for the scenes, and even different songs for each of the endings. My favorite ending song is definitely “When The End” the theme that plays on Rai’s and Bardo’s respective bad ends (more emotional than the actual ends IMO).

4. Routes:

Now… this is the part where my complaints start to appear, but, I’ll first note what I found good about the routes.

  •  None of the routes use the “Rape=Love” trope that I utterly despise and as matter of fact, all of the rape scenes are avoidable and are located on the Bad Ends which is always a plus.
  • The character arcs also have backstories to other support or main, non-hero characters (apparent in Asato’s route).
  • Asato’s route has pretty nice romance.

Now let’s talk about the thing that I hate the most about this game: Repetition, oh my fucking god do they love to copy and paste ENTIRE sequence of events on each and every single one of the routes, it is so dumb, to make things worse the routes all follow the same formula, and by the time you enter your second path you’ll already know how some events and how things will play out, which made some parts a chore to get through. The routes aren’t unique enough for me to have to talk about them individually.

To make things worse, they don’t even utilize the setting they created to the fullest, the sense of journey that you had on the common route is simply abandoned when you enter the character arcs, as Konoe stays on the same city from beginning to end, all of the terms and interesting locations that they presented at first are simply not used to their fullest potential. I could say the same for Konoe that has abilities introduced that are simply forgotten for the most part. Places like Setsura and Kira are simply forgotten, and you only know the basics of it and nothing in-depth.

The romance in some of the routes didn’t feel that natural (especially in Bardo’s that comes out of nowhere since he isn’t a present enough character in the common route), and the endings are also somewhat underwhelming, the Bad Ends could have been longer and more interesting and the good ends less formulated. The game can also be very “Guide Dang it!”, while some common route choices are obvious, most are pretty cryptic and don’t make much sense on the first playthrough.

I also feel obligated to talk about Leaks, the villain, he simply isn’t that threatening during the routes he barely appears aside from a specific sequence of events that play in each of the paths.

Also Bardo’s path should have been locked, it spoils way too much about Rai for it to be available from start.

5. Conclusion:

While Lamento is far from bad, it isn’t the Kamige that people seem to consider it, the repetition and lack of use of the setting it creates are glaring problems that hold back a VN that could have been great, that now it is just “good”. Be aware of these problems if you’re gonna play it.



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"protagonist starts having dreams of snakes entering his body"

A prophetic dream if I ever saw one! :wahaha:

The highest-rated yaoi on VNDB, eh? Interesting that (with most readers apparently) it can get away with such poorly structured routes. At least I can reinforce my stance that if I ever try reading any JP BL I will go for Shingakkou by Maggie's recommendation. :)

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24 minutes ago, Plk_Lesiak said:

 

The highest-rated yaoi on VNDB, eh? Interesting that (with most readers apparently) it can get away with such poorly structured routes. At least I can reinforce my stance that if I ever try reading any JP BL I will go for Shingakkou by Maggie's recommendation. :)

Yeah, do that or read other stuff like Animamundi, since really it seems a lot of people is biased towards Lamento because of N+C's popularity and because it was also the first BL of many people.

25 minutes ago, Plk_Lesiak said:

"protagonist starts having dreams of snakes entering his body"

A prophetic dream if I ever saw one! :wahaha:

Lewd...:yumiko:

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