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VN of the Month June 2014 - Semiramis no Tenbin


Semiramis no Tenbin is VN of the Month and Reminiscence Re:Collect is a solid choice for those who played prequel. Clephas did not highlight any other titles, and I failed to find anything appealing enough as well. Micchi actually found three more - Koi ga Saku Koro Sakura doki , Re;Lord ~Helford no Majo to Nuigurumi~ and even Lilium x Triangle .

 

1. Magical Eyes -Red is for anguish- マジカルアイズ -Red is for anguish- [140620] Pomera Studios 1 2 3 4
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In the middle of the night on a certain day of April 201X, the left arm of the owner of a general store is chopped off in the backyard of his own store.
Even though he claims that the perpetrator is a 'doll' that was kept in the store, his words carry little weight due to the lack of other witnesses.
The doll and the detached arm are gone from the scene of crime.
“Just as a light too bright may burn out one's retinas, too much of any good thing can be toxic to humans.
Even should it have the invisible form of one's emotions.”
This is a mystery story about bizarre incidents unfolding around the town, intermingled with a complicated mixture of human intentions.
Doujin is localized and has English reviews

 

2. Date A Live: Arusu Install デート・ア・ライブ 或守インストール [140626] Compile Heart 1
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Autumn. When scorching sunlight finally softened. Itsuka Shido was in a cyber world. There is a world of super simulated reality developed by <Fraxinus>. The non-daily life in the cyber world reproduces the daily life of Shido faithfully.
Familiar row of houses along the city street. The characters' faces which he knew by sight. Met in such a world, unrecognized girl.
"To you, I'll ask - what is [love]?"
The advent of artificial spirits irregular that shouldn't have. By abnormalities that occur simultaneously, Shido, trapped in the cyber world.
As for Tohka who came over to save Shido, she got trapped in the cyber world too, in the same way.
And to escape from the cyber world, the action that should be taken by Shido in order to regain the stolen everyday life is only one ──
Date the girls in the cyber world and make them fall for you!?
Anime Spin-Off

 

4. Harvest OverRay ハーヴェストオーバーレイ [140627] Giga 1 2 3 4
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In the near future, technology has developed to the point where most things have been digitized, from everyday items to entertainment. Makito is a game-loving student who is full of curiosity. He tries every game that comes out, but he had lately been dissatisfied with them.
One day, he received an invitation to the closed beta of an augmented reality (AR) game called ‘Harvest Onreal’. It was the highly anticipated newest work by Cymell Corporation, which had produced the prominent AR game ‘Cherry Blossom’. He was very excited to play it even though he had never seen a game labelled as a ‘live game’ genre before. He signed up for the game without reading the user agreement at all and later found out that he could not exit the game nor turn off the AR.
Makito got others around him caught up in it as well: game-loving lady-like underclassman Lilia, the most powerful (and short) upperclassman Komachi, transfer student Yuuka who he met by chance at the beach, and his genius programmer younger sister Sumi. They gathered together as the ‘next generation club’ with the goal of clearing the game.
There are English reviews

 

5. Kagami no Kuni no Ohime-sama ga Gakuen Seikatsu to Koi o Hajimemashita 鏡の国のお姫様が学園生活と恋を始めました [140627] Felicia
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At the end of summer vacation, Takuma snuck into Hinoura Gakuen at night with his osananajimis Iku and Masato, and best friend Reiko. They planned to investigate one of the school’s seven mysteries about a ‘disappearing shadow’ and also do a courage test at the same time. Reaching the large mirror which was the source of the rumours, they deemed that it was just a normal mirror and there was nothing strange about it. However, when Takuma touched the mirror, he was sucked inside it.
When he came to, he found himself in an unfamiliar place with an unknown girl knocked down in front of him. She was the princess of the Aquaknight Kingdom, Sara. She had wished to go to Takuma’s world, on the other side of the mirror. He sympathized with her having her future pre-determined by others since he had also experienced this in his past. After that, she came to live at his home since he had a strong desire to help her out after seeing her crying and vowing to be able live by herself.
Game is of doujin quality. Poor scenario, half-hearted characters and numerous rough edges leave this game no chance.

 

6. Koi Doki 恋DOKi [140627] Etoiles
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Yuzuru is like any male student: he wants to be popular and do it with a girl. He talks about sex with his classmates and has perverted fantasies when he looks at cute girls. He chooses his wardrobe carefully and reads books about sex and watches AVs to prepare for the moment when it appears. Even though he’s been marked as a troublemaker by the public moral committee’s Suzuka, it’s still an enjoyable school life to him. He doesn’t feel lonely at home while his parents are away overseas since his younger sister Kokoro is always there to greet him with a smile.
One day, he helped a girl who claimed to have come from the future, Miku. She gave him a ring and told him to wear it if he wanted to become popular. Indeed, his life changed upon wearing it, with all girls in the school falling for him, including Suzuka who had considered him as an enemy.
Synopsis makes game beyond salvation already. Contents is of an average moege.

 

7. Koi ga Saku Koro Sakura Doki 恋がさくころ桜どき [140627] Palette 1 2 3 4 5 6
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Spring is the flowering season, the season of the cherry blossoms. It is the time for first meetings and partings, when the buds start sprouting.
Yuuma is a second-year student at Mihaya Academy who listens to love problems from girls at the school and gives them thoughtful advice. This has made him quite popular and loved, resulting in a 21,000 yen (taxes included) ‘love bounty’ placed on him. The girls came to him with problems ranging from jealousy to infidelity. Having heard about so many troubles related to love, Yuuma lost any desire he had for it.
One day, a mysterious girl appeared before him. She had never been in love, but she believed that it was a wonderful thing. She asked him if he would like to be in love, and that as a love fairy, she will help his love come true.
A girl who cannot fall in love. A boy who has no interest in love. If they end up falling in love with each other, how will the world change?
There are English reviews

 

8. Love Relation ラブリレーション [140627] I.D.
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Yuuto’s house burned down one spring day. Luckily, he and his parents escaped injury, but they lost everything else. His parents could stay in their company dormitory, but only a 1-bedroom unit was available. They also didn’t have any relatives nearby who could help them. Ultimately they were able to secure a place for 3 persons, but it’d be a month before they could move in. His suggestion that he would spend a month in a capsule hotel was overheard by his homeroom teacher Sakurako who happened to be sitting behind them at the family restaurant. He ended up staying at her home in exchange for doing household chores. However, will living in a house surrounded by three sisters be too stimulating for a boy in puberty like him?
No surprises here. Just a borderline nukige.

 

9. Ore ga Yamata no Orochi Nara 俺がヤマタノオロチなら [140627] Softhouse Sora
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Shouta lives in the beautiful and peaceful port town of Suga-chou with his childhood friend Mai. He enjoys his days together with Mai, her best friend Yuzuno, his classmate Sayuri, respected upperclassman Yukiho, and best buddy Shingo. However, they were caught up in an unexpected event one summer vacation. He felt like that "someone" within him was about to awaken, and he turned into Yamata no Orochi.
Game is nominated for kusoge of the year for many reasons. But main ones are old-fashioned style, zero interesting characters or concepts and lots of bugs.

 

10. Out Vegetables アウトベジタブルズ [140627] SofthouseChara 1 
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There were two wishes in the world: one was an immoral wish to become a phantom thief, the other was a perverted wish to have one’s treasure stolen by a phantom thief. It would not have been a problem if wishes stayed as wishes, but the two people who harboured these desires met each other. A ‘night festival’ was established under the dark side of a mega-corporation as a competition for phantom thieves. This is where the story begins for Zenshirou and the two phantom thieves-in-training girls who he leads, Tomoe and Mirai
Simulation

 

11. Re;Lord ~Herford no Majo to Nuigurumi~ Re;Lord ~ヘルフォルトの魔女とぬいぐるみ~ [140627] Escu:de 1 2 3
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In a world where swords and magic exist, the demon realm faced an unprecedented danger. Three ‘witches of disaster’ appeared and invaded a territory of the demon country of Saarland. Lacking skills due to the recent peaceful times and recognizing the witches’ overwhelming powers (including the ability to change the form of others), they surrendered the territory of Groesen to them. A half year later, the majority of the townspeople in Groesen had been turned into dolls. Wilfred decided to take back the land from the witches, and he possessed the only ability to defeat them.
RPG

 

12. Reminiscence Re:Collect レミニセンス Re:Collect [140627] Tigre Soft 1 2 3 4
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This is the sequel and ending to Reminiscence. The main story is focused on new heroine Suzuka, and subcharas Kazuha and Ren. Of course, there are also after stories for the 5 heroines from the previous game, Kizuna, Aki, Axela, Rin and Nozomi.
It’s been 2 years since Hidetaka became a special duty official. The others have gone their own ways since graduation. A big change has come for Hope Town and Dream Town with the discovery of a new city Yamato. They wished to maintain peace via diplomacy, but Yamato sent a one-sided demand for them to hand over all their technology. They were especially interested in the Kurayashiki name and requested Kazuha be sent to them. If their conditions were not met, then they would attack both cities with full force. The special duty officials from Hope and Dream devoted themselves to tense negotiations to avoid such an outcome.
There are English reviews

 

13. Scramble Lovers スクランブル・ラバーズ [140627] Aries 1 2
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One day during lunchtime, Shingo gathered with four girls who had transferred into the same class as him. His twin sister Yui suggested that they undergo ‘love training’ in order to find a wonderful first love. He thought he had heard her wrong, but the other girls all readily accepted the idea. Thus, the first love agreement was formed. It contained 5 articles: 1) one must report all activities, 2) one can try anything they wish, 3) one should not forestall others, 4) one should tell others if there is any progress in their situation, and 5) if anyone reaches the goal, then everyone else should offer them their congratulations. With the summer festival as the deadline, the girls begin their quest for first love.
There are English reviews

 

14. Semiramis no Tenbin セミラミスの天秤 [140627] Caramel Box 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
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Ever since he hit his head, Reiji can sometimes hear things which he shouldn’t be able to hear. The doctor told him that such cases of acousma would gradually fade with time, but he felt rather restless about it. One day, he met Ami, the transfer student who had held all the boys in the class captive on her first day. He wasn’t excited like his friends, but rather worried about her after looking at her slightly vacant eyes.
That night, he met her by chance on the way back home from the convenience store. She told him while smiling that he was qualified to become a magician, and he felt a shiver through his body. He realized that he couldn’t defy Ami, who called herself a ‘devil’. It was as if she could read his thoughts. Afterwards in the classroom, he would hear her whispers, by which she would reveal the true feelings and intentions of his fellow classmates. He felt that the classroom had become a ‘kind prison’ full of lies and façades. Will he be able to escape from Ami’s ‘prison’?
There are English reviews

 

BLOCKED
 
1. Stargazer -Shoujo wa Hoshi no Yume o Miru- Stargazer-少女は星の夢を見る- [140624] Rainbowdimension 1 2
Miku has just transferred schools due to her parents work. She wanders into the infirmary, where she meets a mysterious girl named Hoshimi. Will that encounter change the fate of the two girls?
Doujin has English reviews
 
2. Shuki Shuki Daishuki!! しゅきしゅきだいしゅき!! [140627] Iris 1 2 3
Youji was half-forced by his older sister Mimi to be the new manager (in training) of the Fancy Shop USAMi, a cute store which is frequented by little girls. He got to know the shy Chikage who helps around at the shop, the pure Russian girl Tamara who lives next door, and the junior idol Aoi who ran away from home and now lives in the park. Their relationship grows closer and more intimate as they advance towards being a slightly risky lovey-dovey couple.
Loliconge has English reviews
 
3. Chiccha Love Apart ちっちゃらぶアパート [140627] Galette 1
Naoto is a NEET who was entrusted with managing an apartment which had previously been under his grandfather Taizou’s care. Taizou told him that the building is blessed by the god of marriage. He was expecting to be surrounded by beautiful women, but in reality, there were only ‘girls who will become beautiful women’. Every day, he completed his managerial duties while shutting himself in his room.
One day, he met a mysterious thing while doing cleaning: the (self-proclaimed) patron god of the apartment, Tama! It warned him that its powers have dwindled from being shut in for so long and at this rate, disasters will befall those who live in the apartment. To help it recover its powers, he must fulfill three conditions: do not neglect the management and maintenance of the apartment, strengthen relationships with the tenants, and do not let anyone move out of the building.
Loliconge has an English review

 

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Semiramis no Tenbin has a unique place in my heart, not the least of which because no other VN I've ever played has had such a unique story or atmosphere.  For fanatic weaboos, this can be a painful VN to read, because it is brutally honest about Japan's societal flaws.  

Harvest Overray is the only non-Baldr Giga game I honestly thought might have been VN of the Month worthy (in another month).  Giga is famous for high visual production values, but their teams' talent for SOL VNs hovers in the range of permanent mediocrity.  

Kagami no kuni is a kusoge.  The end.

SakuSaku is a translated nakige of relatively high quality... so I'm not going to bother making any comments on it.

Love Relation is a low quality charage not worth mentioning.

Ore ga Yamata no Orochi nara is a really poor attempt at mixing charage with Japanese mythology that became a total mess.

Reminiscence RE:Collect is an excellent sequel to the original Reminiscence, with a strong plot and a major extension to the setting.  The only downside is that there wasn't a third game, lol.

Scramble Lovers is another kusoge.

 

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I did late to comment on the last month, so let me comment in regard of May 2014 releases here as well.

Sound of Drop - GL VN in that it's the first Sekai's releases, and from VNDB scores it seems kind of underrated. Oh, and the company's next release (Fatal Twelve) did manage to get better reception. If anything else, at least I can say that I like the character design for both of this VN and Fatal Twelve, and I hope that the company can develop similar VN like this if possible. Oh yes, as for this VN it's more or less mystery VN with some bad ending that can be quite disturbing because of gore and all.

Golden Marriage - Rare Ensemble VN that surprisingly didn't show that the MC can disguised as very cute girl, and other than that I remember that an user here did attempt to translate this only for his effort going nowhere. Oh well.

Majokoi - At first it's started as fan translation attempt (I remember that I keep my eyes on this project along with Bishoujo Mangekyou and keep reporting the progress of this in my VNTS Review back at 2016), and one way or another Sekai did manage to get this. As for the premise, it has some interesting story that eventually lead into something that can be said as some deconstruction on fairy tale (In which it's some sort of interesting seeing that Niijima Yuu was often said as someone who like to write his VN in fairy tale style). That said, I understand if some people did hesitate to play this because on how at first the male MC (Takumi) was depicted as playboy who like to hit the woman and then have sex with said female.

Saku Saku - I still remember on how shocked I was back when Saku Saku opening was played at 2016 Sekai AX stream, because back then I expect it to be released as soon as possible after the engine work is done (Turned out that the team did ask some help from Sekai to do that lol). Technically wise this is the very first Nekonyan project back when they still named as Shinku Translation, and back then it's going quite well from what I remember (Well aside from shocking announcement by Sekai). As for the VN itself, well the story may lean towards dramatic romance if you play it so perhaps you may didn't like it if you prefer some less dramatic romance story. At least the art itself is good thanks to Tsubasu, so you may play Saku Saku here just for the sake of her art.

Semirais no Tenbin - One of controversial VN with the main heroine Ami here is pretty much dominate the story so much that it can be said that she's more or less the MC of the VN while the actual MC here is just some tool for the player to projected themselves as male lol. That said, from what I read in the review that said the routes has the writing being rushed, I suppose the higher up did try his best to interfere with the writing (I also suspect that the writer may want to write the VN with Ami as the MC, only to be interfered to have male MC). By the way the writer did also write Otoboku, so at least we have one of the writer's work available in English. As for the chance of this to be localized, it depend on Shiravune whether they want to have Hobibox to localize this or not.

Magical Eyes - Good effort for the developer to have the opening animated. Other than that and Fruitbat did localized this back at 2016, no much to say here.

Reminiscence FD - Rule number two in regard of Kinugasa's VNs: Don't expect him to write coherent ending in the sequel/finale even with on how good his setting building and comedy writing is, because the pitiful guy can't end his own story. Obviously that rule apply to anyone else who hope that Blade and Dagger would resolve some plot point that Ryuusei did raise.

ReLord Part 1 - First part of episodic VN that Sekai released way back at 2018, and by this time we still didn't have part 2 released which to say not as good as Nine tetralogy release pacing (Although perhaps Nine tetralogy here is special case when it come to localized episodic VN). At least it's been ready for the release, so we just need to wait for more than three years to have this released instead of more than four years for waiting Sekai to released Tokeijikake sequel (Daybreak). Anyway we'll have our MC who more or less has father complex tried to return his father's pride by fighting the witch that said to rob the said pride, and in here we'll have the gameplay in that you must strip the witch to win the battle. Speaking of Escu:de VN, to this day I still waiting for JAST to finished and released Yamizome Revenger.

That's all for my comments in regard of both May and June 2014 releases.

Edited by littleshogun
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