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VN of the Month December 2023


kivandopulus

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December is still the most lively month for visual novels.
 
1Murder Mystery Paradox - Kono Hitonatsu no Juugonen マーダーミステリーパラドクス このひと夏の十五年 [231202] 213℉U
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August, 2004.
Shikinejima — a secluded island that only a few hundred people call home.
Fifteen-year-old Itsuki Amazawa has come to visit the island for the very first time.
At his adoptive mother's childhood home, he and his newly met cousins pass the summer days in peace and quiet.
That is, until Itsuki learns the truth about the island...
Strange incidents known to the locals as "Shikinejima Vanishings" have been occurring around the island.
And deeply entangled in these puzzling happenings are people that Itsuki holds dear.
Will he be able to uncover the truth and save those he cares about?
Murder mystery = not for me.
 
2. Yama no Susume: Next Summit ~Ano Yama ni, Mou Ichido~ ヤマノススメ Next Summit ~あの山に、もう一度~  [231207] ENTERGRAM
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Next summit to conquer.
Anime spin-off
 
3. Seifuku Kanojo 制服カノジョ  [231214] ENTERGRAM
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Main character grows up in big city center, but comes to heal in Fukuoka, a city full of beautiful women.
Dating SIM. Only partial release so far, but vndb might not track full release for me later on, so best include now.
 
4. ONE.  [231221] Novamicus
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What tied me to this world...
1998, winter.
I was just a regular student until another world was born in me.
Like softly falling snow, it blanketed and began to bury my everyday life.
It was only then that I realized...
That there were certain things in my life that never changed.
The same familiar scenery.
The warmth of the one I loved, who filled me with a joy I never noticed.
Their existence tied me to this world.
It was when I first started to want these bonds, to want that special someone, that time began to pass, and sunlight caused the season to really shine.
When it did, which world was I standing in, and who was holding my hand?
Remake
 
5. Amase-Jima wa Irokoi Zakari 天瀬島は色恋ざかり [231222] Liaison
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There's an issue with the young ladies on this island.
The protagonist, Haruka Amase, was summoned to a warm, secluded island, which had nothing but the prestigious young ladies' academy.
Upon instructions from her mother, the headmistress, she ends up living there for a while as a "living teaching material" for these young ladies who seem clueless about interacting with men.
An energetic student council president who shares a secret with her alone.
A strangely naive girl who becomes overly attached.
The aggressive girl sitting next to her with a maid-like demeanor and a tsundere princess attitude in full swing.
A senior with an ample bosom, not just in figure but also in her liberal views on modesty, embodying the Yamato Nadeshiko spirit.
A timid, inept-with-men klutz who, for some reason, seems connected to the protagonist.
Haruka endeavors to help these girls understand a bit about the opposite sex.
Engaged in volunteer work for theater production, he involves them, gradually touching their inner selves.
As they understand the opposite sex, become aware of gender dynamics, and feelings of love begin to bud,
One can sense everyone's hearts slowly changing...
How will he face these girls, and what bittersweet youth will unfold?
There's no place to escape; this island, abundant with young ladies, brims with the sparkle of youth...
The secrets of this island remain unknown to anyone as of yet...
Perfect harem stage. Many rough edges for new brand - mostly for system, but routes aren't that interesting either..
 
6. Imouto to Kanojo - Sorezore no Sentaku 妹と彼女 それぞれの選択 [231222] Waffle
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June, the rainy season.
Kei, a fourth-year college student, is at a major crossroads.
Since the day of the fireworks display that interrupted the confession from his younger sister Haruka, the relationship between them has gone cold, and still remains in this way for three years.
To become truly happy together, until the "Answer" is found, there is no way to respond to his sister's feelings. While desperately holding back the feelings for his sister, Kei continues to act as a "good older brother". On the other hand, Haruka is acting coldly towards her brother, who does not respond to her feelings, despite being aware of each other.
As the rainy season continues, Kei's worries deepen.
To become truly happy together.
If he can find the "Answer", he should be able to respond to his sister's feelings.
One day, as a result of consulting with his friend Daichi, Kei reluctantly goes to a hostess club, since there is a girl whom his friend really wants him to meet. Appearing in front of Kei is a girl who could have been mistaken for his beloved sister, a face that looks exactly like Haruka. The girl introduces herself as "Mitsuki", feeling "Similar", the two of them become intensely attracted to each other.
With the appearance of "Mitsuki", the relationship between the siblings "Kei" and "Haruka" begins to change drastically.
A very decent love triangle romance scenario oriented story with Gemini imouto focus. If you expect exactly that, impact is likely to be high.
 
7. Shin Koihime † Eiyuutan - Gaiden - Hakugetsu no Tomoshibi 真・恋姫†英雄譚 外伝 白月の灯火 [231124] Quince Soft & Lump of Sugar
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"A new story where feelings and strength unite..."
The tyranny of the eunuch, the rise of rival factions, the invasion of foreign tribes...
The Han Empire, which had been prospering for so long, began to show signs of decline.
Like overripened fruit that naturally falls and rots,
Will everything soon come to an end?
As if to tear through the air,
A single falling star shone bright in the blue sky.
The main character, Hongou Kazuto, who has time-traveled to the world of the Romance of the Three Kingdoms, is now in the Han Empire.
This time, he runs through the world of warfare in the Han Empire!
Sequel or something.
 
8. Yuzuriha no Uta -Inouryoku Soshiki Hanzai Taisaku Bu: Tokushu Kidoutai Dai Ni Ka- ユズリハの詩 -異能力組織犯罪対策部 特殊機動隊 第二課- [231222] propeller
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...After humanity had gone through the Second World War, people with supernatural abilities or grotesque features began to be discovered. Soon, these abilities or characteristics became known as "Special Powers", and those who possessed them as "Special Holders". Humanity sympathized with the early "Special Holders", but as their numbers expanded, their abilities started to be feared and avoided, and attempts to expel them from society arose. "Special Holders" also began to use their abilities against humanity. Some to defend themselves, while others to show off their abilities. Uprisings, crimes, and other similar events were commonplace as a result of this vicious cycle, and the battle between the two sides was escalating all over the world.
Likewise, Japan too was not an exception, as there was an outbreak of conflicts between humen and "Special Holders". During that period of unrest, all the time there were grievous events like the government being temporarily suspended to fulfill some of its functions or a failed coup d'état attempt in a Japanese Self-Defense Forces academy. Japanese government took steps to address the country's unstable situation. It has formed a Special Riot Police force that includes both humans and "Special Holders". The chief of its second division, Kashiwabi Ayato, and his subordinates worked hard to maintain a public security. A few years after the establishment of the Special Riot Police, crime rates fell and public order was restored as a result of its members' efforts. Every day, Special Riot Police officers in Japan, which had briefly returned to calm, fought hard to keep Special Powers crimes under control.
Following a certain case, the number of organized crimes perpetrated by Special Holders began to climb. Public unrest, government critics, and similar issues were rapidly spreading in proportion. All members of the Special Riot Police were called to investigate the case, each with their own set of suspicions. Before long, they were swallowed into a great conspiracy encompassing the whole country. The Army, which is taking actions to suppress the newly erupted conflict between humans and Special Holders with military power, and the protagonist with Special Riot Police, which is making efforts to settle the disturbance. What will you see in this critical situation, where all of these powers are mingled, after all rights and pains come together?..
Game got delayed a lot of times, and that usually means no good. It has good setting, eroticism and badass heroines. On the bad side it's riot police stuff, so story is weak, battles are short and poorly done, and there's a lot of copy-paste between the routes. Good fan-service, but definitely not a revelation.

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I guess it has to do being the years end, so obviously the VN developer do their best to deliver the product on Christmas. Anyway, let me try to comment on the title here.

One Remake - It's more or less redundant to me because the script is mainly the same as old version, and the old version has the sex scenes in case someone somehow desperate for it. That said, this technically has quite high production value with newer anime VAs and newer art, so someone may pick the remake if the old version graphic is too old school (Both version are available in English anyway). Forgot to mention the remake still has too much choice, but from what I'd read somewhere at least the staffs alleviate the problem by adding the hint.

Eiyuutan Gaiden - Honestly BaseSon has been released too much Koihime Musou so much I'd become tuned out of it, but at least good for them they still have enough capital to keep milking the franchise by making the spin off again and again. Also good for the fans they can still get new Koihime Musou game, although I can only wonder when we'll going to have full translation patch for Shin Koihime Musou finally released.

Amase-Jima - I see the company is another branch of Visual Arts, and I can say the art is looking good. Although in the end, looks like it's just usual moege with something more beneath it and good production value.

Yuzuriha no Uta - If 2022 has Study Steady 2 as the most delayed release, then in 2023 we have Yuzuriha no Uta as the most delayed release, in which it reached up to more than two years. While the delay is supposed understandable seeing this is the first time propeller developed new VN after Sougeki no Jaeger in 2014, I'm not really sure if it can repeat propeller's old success, especially seeing all of the heroines have big breast. At least the MC seems to be an adult one, unlike Sougeki no Jaeger MC.

Imouto to Kanojo - While the title seemingly simple with the game is looks like to be nukige with it's lengthy sex scenes, turned out there's much more emotion inside the game, especially with NTR moment. That said, the main story is not really the NTR or the incest, but rather the relationship between three main characters, namely the MC with psychological problem, his little sister, and the hostess who resemble MC's little sister. Safe to say, the relationship and feeling between those three are quite complex. By the way, it's quite ironic that I find the design for nukige like VN is more reasonable compared to Yuzuriha no Uta (ie has more reasonable breast size).

For VN of the month, well out of all VNs only Imouto to Kanojo that can be qualified if we count the new VN (One Remake is more or less redundant while Eiyuutan Gaiden is another spin off), although I understand that VN is not for everyone. That's all for what I can comment in regard of December 2023 release.

Edited by littleshogun
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Yuzuriha no Uta- I'm playing it, and my opinion is that it is more of a straight out story-focused/plotge rather than a chuunige.  There is too much slice-of-life involved, and there isn't nearly enough melodrama for a chuunige.  The romance is abrupt and the story is structured so that there is little difference depending on which heroine you choose, which kinda defeats the point of having routes.  I'd say it is a very, very old style of game, and not in a good way.  

Eiyuutan Gaiden- This is basically a fourth route to Shin Koihime Musou.  Instead of following one of the three kingdoms rulers' factions, it puts the protagonist in the Han-preservation faction focused on Dong Zhuo and Lu Bu.  I don't know if it will be good or not, but it is probably worth playing if you want more Shin Koihime but don't want more meaningless after stories for the original three routes.

 

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