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Are visual novels being treated fairly?


Jardic47

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Hello everyone. My name is Jardic and I just thought of something that I got me thinking tonight. I was looking around the internet and I was reading Reddit and here on Fuwanovel and I was wondering what the deal is with people saying that they like a visual novel and it is always the same visual novels time and time again. I know people like the medium for different reasons, but when I look up a list of VNs people like, it is the same ones as another person I saw. I also know that it is a niche market for people to like these games but come on. If I was wanting to know what VN to play, chances are I already have that game on my hard drive. No one talks about the obscure visual novels and I was wondering why that was? It just bugs me to see the same the same VNs on someone’s list and I don’t see a person to give me a reason to purchase more visual novels.

 

I know the previous paragraph was a little harsh, but it’s the truth with some of the things this genre of games gives me. I wish that there were more visual novels compared to video games so that people can recommend me a visual novel that can raise my interest a little more. I wish more people could be more interested in VNs so that there would be more games to offer. Sadly, I wish I could see that happening, but I know it will remain a niche market.

 

I remember when I got into this medium of games three years ago and I thought it was a million times better than what I was playing at the time. Most of the games I played before visual novels were your typical action games like GTA or shooters like Call of Duty, but I digress. All I am saying is that I wished the visual novel community was more diverse in what they play. I’m not trying to say that everyone’s list is a bad list, I’m just saying that putting some games on a pedestal is not a good thing sometimes. I come to these communities to find out when some VNs are being released and to see if there is another visual novel to raise my interest.

 

Sorry for saying stuff that might trigger some people, but I thought this blog would be a good idea to vent a little bit. Let me know what you think, and I will see you guys next time.

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If you look at any list that recommends the "best" then the same titles will naturally appear there, because they're the more popular ones, the ones more people like.

If you are looking to find visual novels you do not know about, you will need to venture into recommendation threads with veterans asking about them, or, better still, make one yourself, because I assure you there are people who will know of Visual Novels you may not. You just need to show what you've played or what you like.

Discussion itself mostly takes place about either the big famous titles or the bigger recently released things, so you won't find obscure VNs by reading the discussions that are had, most of the time. So in that sense I can agree (though if you start threads about obscure titles it is likely that people who've played it before will at least browse it).

Do you know about Symphonic Rain? Play that without looking it up any further if it looks like it might interest you (and you haven't already).

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3 hours ago, Mr Poltroon said:

If you look at any list that recommends the "best" then the same titles will naturally appear there, because they're the more popular ones, the ones more people like.

If you are looking to find visual novels you do not know about, you will need to venture into recommendation threads with veterans asking about them, or, better still, make one yourself, because I assure you there are people who will know of Visual Novels you may not. You just need to show what you've played or what you like.

Discussion itself mostly takes place about either the big famous titles or the bigger recently released things, so you won't find obscure VNs by reading the discussions that are had, most of the time. So in that sense I can agree (though if you start threads about obscure titles it is likely that people who've played it before will at least browse it).

Do you know about Symphonic Rain? Play that without looking it up any further if it looks like it might interest you (and you haven't already).

I'll take a look into it. thank you for the recommendation. It's just a little frustrating that VNs are not giving the same light like other video games, but I kind of understand it as well. It's just a minor quibble, I'm not going to worry about it too much. I will dig deeper and try to find some veteran novelists and look at there lists. I got into writing because of this medium and I want to make a visual novel in the future, so I will keep looking. Thank you again for your input.

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Honestly, you just need to look in the right places/ask the right questions. People will overwhelmingly recommend you popular things, for obvious reasons, but if you search for specific themes, unusual story structures or just ask people for things they consider to be hidden gems, you will get answers you probably haven't seen before.

Every fan community has a bit of a hive mind when it goes to what is celebrated and talked about and what is kept on the margins. I don't think VN fandom is particularly bad in this regard, but either way, you have all the tools necessary to break through the groupthink - asking for obscure VNs, browsing VNDB, reading review blogs. You just need to use them. 

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While there are some genres I prefer not to get involved with (mystery, sports), I reviewed a rather large number of non-nukige over the years in my blog.  The truth is that JVNs aren't that diverse in terms of genre.  Most that get released are your standard slice-of-life, with a minority being plot-centric, mystery, or action-focused.  The reason that so many minor sub-genres have been formed in VNs (nakige, utsuge, etc) is precisely because of a lack of diversity on that end.  

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As others have said, if you start a thread asking for recommendations I'm sure you'll be recommended VNs that you never heard of and might end up loving. It will also be helpful if you are specific about VNs you have played and enjoyed and which you didn't enjoy. Regardless, if you are looking for some great but sadly underrated translated VNs, I would recommend checking out Swan Song, Yume Miru Kusuri, and I'll also have to agree with @Mr Poltroon and recommend Symphonic Rain.  

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I did try to look at your VNDB list, only to see that your VNs list is too small. So if possible, perhaps you can list what kind of VNs that you're already have on your hard drive so that it can be easier to recommend you some VNs. My other suggestion here is just like everyone else in that you should make a recommendation thread for asking what kind of next VNs that you want to play, and after that perhaps you can say that the VNs being treated fairly (Even though scope wise is sill limited compared to video games).

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