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  1. 19 points
    Hello everyone, I'm back with an update, and a late Christmas, early new year gift for everyone . Well, you've probably guessed what it is, since there's not really anything else I can give you at this time XD. But still, here it is at last, the partial patch with full translated text! Yay!! XD A little about the patch: - Just as its name suggests, only the texts have been fully translated. Hubb and Nylios are still hard at work on editing the images. We'll update the patch and make an announcement regarding that in the future ^^. - With that said, there are edited images included in the patch, such as the tutorial images, the town spots' names, ect. While there aren't that many, I hope that their inclusion will be useful during your playthrough. - While this patch included all translated text, it doesn't mean all of them have been tlc-ed/edited yet. Because of that, there will probably be many mistakes, typos, etc.. If you encounter them, please let us know, we'll fix them in our next patch. Thank you very much. - This patch does include the translations for both appends, so please make sure to install both appends before applying this patch. I haven't tested it yet, but there is a chance you won't be able to launch the game after applying the patch if you only have one append. If this happens, please let me know. I'll make a separate patch for people with 1 append, or no append at all. (Let's hope I can do it XD) How to apply the patch: - It's the same as the previous patch. All you have to do is extracting the patch into the root directory of the game. - If you're going to use ZAP's interface patch, please apply their patch first, then ours. Do keep in mind that our translation may differ. - In case you need it, the order to install the game and applying the patch is: Installing the game -> Append 1 -> Update 1.01 -> Append 2 -> ZAP's patch -> Our patch. And finally, the patch. Here's the link to the patch: https://mega.nz/#F!MstRHI6S!bQVaRTSLnwQPNjYuCJKfpw While this isn't the final version of the patch, we'd love to hear your feedback if you decide to use our patch. It'll also help us improve the translation for the final version as well ^^. Well, I guess that's about it for the last update of the year. Quite a wall of text, isn't it? XD Thank you very much for reading, and for following us all this time ^^. Though it's a little early, Happy New Year, everyone! And see you again next year .
  2. 8 points
    LMFAOOOOOO holy shit HAHAHA TOTAL bruh MOMENT om g lol haha my sides bro im experiencing heart palpitations this joke man dude this is EVERYTHING im lol my brain is deteriorating HAHAHA LOL
  3. 7 points
    While the duology isn't new to people who have a PS4 and played the games, the cruising onto PC on Steam is a big thing for those of you who prefer to do everything with their computer (including me). A few days ago, these two games, which are very much a treat for those who liked the original game or anime, became available. For those who have only watched the Utawarerumono animes (both of them), Mask of Deception covers the same area of the story as the second anime, albeit in more detail with some changes. My personal opinion of it was that it was great... but I found myself wanting H-scenes about halfway through (too many mimikko and those mischievously erotic twins). The second game (Mask of Truth/Futari no Hakuoro) is considerably more serious than the first from the beginning until the end. As such, it provides quite a different experience. For those who were annoyed by the sudden way the second Utawarerumono anime ended, this is a good way to see the rest. For those who have already played both... well why not do so again? I know I will.
  4. 7 points
    Markovich

    Noratoto - 18+ Restoration Project

    Hey, what's up? Here's some updates for the project: Patricia's second H-scene, and another script after it which was removed, are done. Total lines done: 1287 out of 8586. Rounded up, that's 15% done so far! Editing is currently sitting at roughly 9%. Like Zeph said, much of our team was busy for the holidays, myself included, but we should be picking our pace soon. Here's hope next update we can bring it to 30%.
  5. 6 points
    Hello everyone ^^. I'm back with another update. Now, before we move onto the progress update, I have another members update XD. Yuuko Shionji and Dark_Gamer have joined us as the editor and TL checker respectively ^^. Our team has become quite big now, hasn't it? XD With their help, I'm sure the final patch will be in a much better shape than the partial patch, so please look forward to it ^^. Now, on to the progress: - For the TLC/edit: Zones, stages, gods medals and many others other files have been TLC-ed and edited. - For the images: Images for zones', stages' and characters' names, as well as many others, have been edited. The god medals are also half-way edited. We seriously blasted through the backlog with all the new members, didn't we? lol Before ending the update, I have a small warning for everyone using our partial patch. Thanks to @desdevilize, a crash has been found in Mistoria's normal ending. While I haven't received any other report, this crash may extend to other endings as well. If you encounter this crash, you can delete 'SC0450.bin' from the root directory of the game to progress through the crash. However, since that is the translation file for the epilogue, the epilogue will be in Japanese if you do so. I am very sorry for the trouble. I'm looking into this crash right now, and will update the patch the moment the problem is resolved. So please bear with me until then. Oh, and one more thing, for the people asking if we're doing another project... I'm very sorry, but we have nothing to announce at the moment. I mean, this project isn't even completed yet XD. I'll be sure to make an announcement regarding any potential future project, so please wait until then. Thank you ^^. Well, that's about it for this update. Thank you for reading and see you next time ^^. And for the people celebrating Lunar New Year, an early Happy Lunar New Year! XD
  6. 5 points
    Ramaladni

    How to make a baby in Visual Novel ?

    Because virgin writers don't know how women work.
  7. 4 points
    Hey, your VNDB list is... Quite something. Anyway, I think I have a different problem, because as I'm getting old(er) and becoming more of certified failure at life, reading coming-of-age high school stories becomes kind of taxing. The heroines themselves though, they only rarely feel like actual highschoolers. For example, if I remember well, the main cast of Flowers are all high school freshmen, so 15-years-olds. However, they neither look nor act the part. The notion of age is all so abstract in both VNs and much of anime that I'll probably have to get much older to start feeling that dissonance. On the other hand, I don't really get off to otaku media in the first place, so the "cute little animal" kind of appeal shouldn't spoil my enjoyment. I'll skip the h-scenes either way and the romance should still be satisfying enough.
  8. 4 points
    Clephas

    The nature of an infodump

    In plotge of all types, whether they are chuunige, kinetic novels, horror suspense, or mysteries, infodumps are ubiquitous throughout the VN world. Infodumping in and of itself isn't a horrible thing to do to the reader (as some people claim), but it is a tool that is often abused by writers who want to expound on their beloved world and its characters. First, the definition of an infodump is a scene with little or no dialogue where background information is provided without directly proceeding with the story. Infodumps can vary in size from as small as forty lines of narration to up to a thousand, depending on the writer and the subject matter involved. There are even multiple types, which I will describe here. The Lump of Infodump The Lump of Infodump (as I put it) is the most common type of infodump in VNs. In the 'Lump, a great amount of information, sometimes with brief bits and pieces of dialogue or character stream of thought, is provided in a single scene, interrupting the story. The 'Lump is the type of infodump most likely to drive people crazy, due to its tendency to create walls of uninterrupted text. When abused, it tends to interrupt and/or destroy the flow of the story, and I've encountered a number of games where a more measured approach to presenting the setting or explanations of the particulars of an event or the 'why' of an action would have been less monotonous. In fact, that is the big flaw of this type of infodump. It is almost impossible to avoid monotony with this kind of infodump, because all it is doing is literally dropping information on you. That said, infodumps often have a reason for existing that becomes clear in coming scenes, so it is not necessarily always a bad thing. The Scattered Infodump 'Scattered Infodumps' are a technique where the writer provides the information in smaller, more digestible asides throughout the story, as it becomes relevant. This technique tends to be received with less irritation and often goes almost unnoticed by the reader, because it doesn't go on long enough to disrupt the flow of the story. Unlike the 'Lump, it is less likely to be abused, though many writers who use it get into the habit of always using it, which can be problematic for those with an allergy to non-dialogue text, lol. The Flashback Infodump The Flashback Infodump is just that, an infodump provided in the form of a flashback instead of an aside. These often fill in the gaps in the motivations of characters or their upbringing, and their purpose is, 90% of the time, to reveal something that would have made things less interesting if it were revealed earlier. Flashbacks are often abused, though. They are common throughout VNs, with roughly 90% of plotge having at least one and 30% of all charage (in my experience) having one. They are a convenient method of revealing a character's past, so many games also use them for character development, particularly in heroine paths. The Prologue Infodump This is probably the least annoying of the 'obvious' infodumping and is a sub-category of the 'Lump. Some games, rather than dumping setting and character information on you mid-story, will instead infodump immediately after you start. This has the advantage of getting around the disruption of the game's flow that is inevitable with mid-game 'Lumps and providing background information without the writer having to remember to include it strategically throughout the story. This technique is, however, rarely used. Games that use it are rare mostly because if the first thing you see when starting a VN is a wall of text, most people will drop the game right then and there. Because of this, most games that use this are directed to a very specific fanbase or niche of the VN community that already has an established interest in the game in question. A few thoughts The reason I decided to make this post was because of a conversation I had with @fun2novel regarding infodumping in Bradyon Veda. In Bradyon Veda, infodumping is integral to the game's battle scenes (incidentally the discussion began with me giving examples of good battle scenes to him). Because the science-fantasy techniques being used by the characters manipulate matter and physical laws, there are infodumps built into the battle scenes, explaining what they are doing. Because of this, I noted that Bradyon Veda's battle scenes were an example of positive infodumping, because it was done in such a way that it enhanced rather than disrupted the telling of the story. Conclusion What am I trying to get at? Nothing, really. I just thought that people give infodumps a bad rap, when they have probably been infodumped without even noticing it.
  9. 4 points
    Plk_Lesiak

    The nature of an infodump

    Well, of course a prologue wouldn't work in a mystery horror story, but that's not what I was talking about. It's particularly meaningful for high-concept fantasy and sci-fi world that can be confusing to the player if it's not explained properly. Giving just enough context to make it comprehensible at the beginning, and minimize the need for infodumps when the action picks up pace is pretty optimal. In the case of your story, I simply think it could've done with a lot less info in general. I'd like it more being vague than just explaining the lore this way. That is a good point, but if you think of it as another method of "scattering" the infodumps to keep the complexity of the world without creating the walls of info in the middle of the story it should still be worth it. I also don't like encyclopedias if they contain information actually crucial to understanding the story – as you said, it can be cool for fleshing out your world, but it can't be a primary method. ...I might also be speaking from one specific trauma of an EVN with a world that was pretty much incomprehensible because of lack of proper exposition, and with encyclopedia which created more questions than it answered. A good prologue could've done miracles for that game.
  10. 4 points
    TL here. Glad to see people care about this project. It makes it even more worthwhile. Things slowed down a bit over the holidays as I dealt with family obligations and all that jazz but the pace should be picking up again shortly. As for the progress, I'll leave specific updates to the team lead but rest assured that things are still progressing well.
  11. 3 points
    Hello everyone. Before going into the project, here's some information regarding the game: - Kami no Rhapsody (https://vndb.org/v16341) is a VN/SRPG hybrid by the company Eushully, the same company that made Kamidori Alchemy Meister. - Sypnosis (taken from VNDB, with some changes made to go with our translation patch): Team member: Translator: FlamePaladin Translation Checker: Danywar, Dark_Gamer Editor: Vuken, Yuuko Shionji Image Editor: Nylios, hubb2001, Bilbael, pegg We have a full team atm, but since there are a lot of images, we are recruiting for more image editors. If you want to join us, please send me a message or post in this thread. Thank you ^^. Here's some information regarding the text-only partial patch: How to use the partial patch(for both this patch and ZAP patch): - It's the same as the previous patch. All you have to do is extracting the patch into the root directory of the game. - If you're going to use ZAP's interface patch, please apply their patch first, then ours. Do keep in mind that our translations may differ. - In case you need it, the order to install the game and applying the patch is: Installing the game -> Append 1 -> Update 1.01 -> Append 2 -> ZAP's patch -> Our patch. Special thanks: - Huang Yin Ling and maefdomn for their very useful threads. - binaryfail for helping me find the tools to work on this patch. - SaintLouisX, asmodean and Aroduc for their tools. - Special thanks to Kirashi for motivating me to work on this patch, and for the feedback. I really appreciate it. - Special thanks to Mr Poltroon for your work as an editor in this project. Though it was short, I really appreciate your help ^^. - Special thanks to Danywar. Thank you very much for joining the team as the Translation Checker. I'll be counting on you a lot from now on . - Special thanks to glupak. Thank you very much for everything you've done for the project. I really appreciate it ^^. - Special thanks to Vuken. Thank you very much for joining as our Editor. Tbh, I don't even know if you're in this forums lol. In any case, I'll be counting on you to make our patch readable XD. - Special thanks to nylios. Thank you very much for joining the team. I'll be counting on you for a lot of things, so prepare yourself . - Special thanks to hubb2001. Thank you very much for joining us as our image editor. I'll be counting on you for the images XD. - Special thanks to pegg and Bilbael. Thank you very much for joining us as our image editors. Let's do our best to make the complete patch a reality! XD - Special thanks to Yuuko Shionji and Dark_Gamer. Thank you for joining as our TLC-er and editor. Let's make this patch the best it can be XD. Finally, here's the link to the partial patch: MEGA link: https://mega.nz/#F!MstRHI6S!bQVaRTSLnwQPNjYuCJKfpw Crash warning! A crash has been found in Mistoria's normal ending, and this may extend to other endings as well. If you encounter this crash, you can delete 'SC0450.bin' from the root directory of the game to progress through the crash. However, since that is the translation file for the epilogue, the epilogue will be in Japanese if you do so. I am very sorry for the trouble. I'm looking into this crash right now, and will update the patch the moment the problem is resolved. So please bear with me until then. Please keep in mind that this is not the final version of the translation. We'll continue to improve it, so there may be some differences between this patch and the final patch. Please think of this patch as a teaser of sort, a taste of what is to come . Though I've played through and checked this patch, I may still have missed something. If you notice any problem (typos, text display problem, crash, etc.), we'd appreciate it if you could take a screenshot and send it to us. We'll fix it for the next patch. Any feedback is very welcome. That's why if you use this patch, we'd love to hear your thoughts on what we should improve/change. This is everything from me for now. If you took your time to read that wall of text, thank you very much. Even if you didn't, thank you for showing enough interest to click on the thread. See you!
  12. 3 points
    On the Muv-Luv Kickstarter they posted an survey what people want to see next from âge! Kickstarter: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/muvluv/muv-luv-a-pretty-sweet-visual-novel-series/posts/2739853 Survey: https://forms.gle/NE3hnyxp9YWMygk1A They ask explicitly " Which among our game titles are you looking forward to the most to be localized in English* next?" The offer the choice between Schwarzesmarken, Kimi ga Nozomu Eien, Muv-Luv Unlimited The Day After, Muv-Luv Alternative - Total Eclipse or another work of your choice. So what should we rally behind?
  13. 3 points
    Welcome to my blog. Where have we been? Where are we going? TIMELINE 1980s: - Early eroge largely consist of still art (what we call pixel art now), very short dialogue/narrative elements, and some primitive interactive elements, while spanning many genres. 1990s: - The point-and-click adventure game, which has its roots in 1980s video games, establishes itself as one of the most popular genres of eroge. Many games emerge which have interfaces that are visually similar to those of most point-and-click adventure games, but with gradually differing gameplay. These games are all collectively called "adventure games" or "ADV" in Japanese. The general style of having an interface which consists of a rectangular text box at the bottom of the screen, and a collage of visual elements meant to serve as a guide for what the main character sees, is also called "ADV". In other words, ADV becomes a genre that embodies a style of presentation. - The non-adult game company Chunsoft puts out Otogirisou, a kind of illustrated story in which pictures are placed in the background as visual aids while the full narrative is conveyed as overlaid text. This style of presentation is called a "novel game" or "NVL" in Japanese. The gameplay of Otogirisou purely consists of the player making choices on where to take the story, similar to "Choose Your Own Adventure" books, a simple yet powerful narrative tool which would prove influential to ADV as a whole. - Two major eroge brands that specialize in ADV, elf and Leaf, create popular games like Doukyuusei and To Heart. These games stand out from their competitors by the way they utilize talented artists and writers to focus on the personalities of charming heroines, rather than treating pixel porn as what matters and the characterization as an afterthought. This character-centric evolution is called a charage (character game) and encompasses both NVL (like Kizuato) and ADV. And with the release of YU-NO and Kamaitachi no Yoru, two ADV/NVL games that have well-written stories, the term scenarioge (scenario game) becomes more popular. 1999: - Kanon is released by Key. It's the first time a large number of players became very emotionally moved by the story of an eroge, or any ADV at that. Even someone like Baba from Visual Arts, who was just a businessman without much personal interest in ADV, became interested after Kanon. Aside from inventing the nakige (naki game, which means "crying game") genre, it awakened in players a desire for longer scenarios as necessary to deepen their attachment to the heroines. But its most significant role is being the first major moege (moe game) at a time when the term "moe" wasn't even very well known. 2000: - The doujin NVL Tsukihime comes out, and its quality lets it rank among the very top, if not at the very top, of both scenarioge and charage. See Popular Views on What Defines the Chuuni Genre for more info on the influence of Type-Moon's works. 2000-2006: - Now that Kanon and Tsukihime have come out, it seems like a dam bursts and a flood of popular and influential ADV/NVL are released. There are comparatively fewer in 2001, with the most notable ones in my mind being Kiminozo and Kazokei. But in 2002 you have Ever17, Higurashi, Kusarihime, Baldr Force, Hello world, Da Capo, and others. And every year after that just has more and more top quality ADV/NVL. The biggest year is 2004, which sees the release of both Clannad and Fate/stay night (successors to Kanon and Tsukihime, respectively). - Around the middle of the decade, the term "visual novel" is invented among English speaking fans of these games, and basically refers to any game which has an ADV/NVL-style interface and a strong and constant narrative. Since the rest of the world directly bypassed the early history of Japanese eroge and ADV/NVL, they didn't bother with the origins of these styles of games, and just chose a term which seemed to more naturally describe the most famous and representative ADV/NVL. Since then, the term "visual novel" has been recognized by the Japanese too, although the broader Japanese playerbase still commonly thinks that VN is synonymous with "adventure game". In any case, the term is excellent and I like it. - Over the course of this decade, the major tropes and popular genres of VNs, which were mostly foreshadowed in the late 1990s, are firmly established and standardized. They include TIPs, unlockable routes/end, true ends, bad ends, hidden heroines, time loops/leaps, moe, chuuni, nakige, utsuge, imouto games, and many more. The diverse and awkward gameplay of the 1980s and 1990s more or less disappears. - Meanwhile, many of the most successful eroge companies like Key, Type-Moon, and Leaf/Aqua-Plus successfully rebrand themselves and reduce their focus on adult content for the sake of marketing their works to the rest of the Japanese "otaku" industries. They adopt the label of "bishoujo game maker". Many of their most popular IPs (intellectual properties) receive anime adaptations or evolve into multimedia franchises, with "Fate" being the most famous example. On the other hand, as these industries embrace VNs, they also learn from them and try to emulate that same appeal within their own IPs; Fate/stay night is especially influential as a progenitor of the "chuuni" genre. 2006: - Statistically, eroge sales begin to decline. The industry itself doesn't immediately begin to decline, though, because investors take time to notice and react to such trends, companies are still in the midst of developing games, and they will try to shift strategies to fight the trend. The decline in sales won't slow down until 2012. WHY Causes of the trend? This was fiercely debated for years and still hasn't been completely settled. But it's more or less clear. VNs served as a creative outlet without rivals for several years. At first, in the early 1990s, nobody expect much from eroge. But as we entered the later part of the decade, that changed. Eroge was always a venue for weird and exciting scenarios that wouldn't be accepted elsewhere, and it was easier than ever to make quality audiovisual experiences, with multiple free or cheap VN engines available. Writers like Maeda Jun and Nasu took advantage of the medium's ease of entry, along with the freedom of expression it afforded. It was a fresh, mature alternative to the LN industry. However, that didn't last forever. Major publishers in other mediums distilled the parts of eroge that appealed most to players: the nakige components, the moe components, the fanservice and unapologetic harems, the handy sci-fi tropes, the balloon breasts. Everything except the deep emotional and mental investment that's only possible with literature. And of course, the mature themes and content. Above all, what VNs brought to the table was no longer as fresh to people. Without a sense of excitement, the fact that VNs require people to sit down and actually read continuously for hours became... problematic. The era of smartphones and social media also heralded the era of low attention spans. People came to think that "adventure games" = "boring". This was coupled with the fact that more and more people play bishoujo games on their smartphones, and who wants to play eroge in public? Waifu/husbando social games like Fate/Grand Order and Granblue Fantasy dealt especially heavy blows to players' interest in VNs. They let players pick between countless more waifus and husbandos than VNs, have more exciting plots to engage casual players (not some ordinary school life drama), have the slutty outfits and exaggerated figures of nukige heroines, continually put out new content for the most popular characters, let you put your waifu/husbando in your home screen so you can constantly look at her, and tap on the portrait of her/him to hear some flirty line voiced by a popular anime seiyuu. They even copied the feature of some VNs where you can give your favorite hero or heroine chocolates on Valentine's Day or White Day. The proof is in the recent anime Chuubyou Gekihatsu Boy where the "guy who's only interested in 2D girls" stereotype no longer involves VNs on a PSP, but rather depicts a social game on a phone. To be frank, even the latest Fire Emblem game probably makes VNs less appealing by comparison. The main draw of VNs was always the cute and flirty heroines and romance, but these elements have been thoroughly exported. The exact same situation arose with Japanese web novels on the site Shousetsuka ni Narou. An initial wave of authors pioneered new genres with certain distinctive tropes, most of them related to isekai, and started a trend which has dominated the Japanese web novel scene. But the mainstream LN industry quickly learned and started to put out its own isekai LNs, as well as aggressively recruit these authors (who naturally didn't object to being paid for what they'd initially put out for free online). A few years later, Narou's talents have more or less moved out, and the stories at the top of the popularity charts haven't been supplanted by any new talents. In any case, the major difference between Narou and the VN industry is that Narou authors are overall much better off with editors, whereas the transition from VNs to LNs/anime is absolutely a creative downgrade. WHAT DO 1. Copy FGO. Social games are a natural evolution of the appeal of many VNs. Unfortunately, they're also largely vapid experiences with have less voice acting, silent protagonists, a massive cast of heroines who receive little character development, a disjointed narrative, a story that's mostly dialogue and constantly interrupted by battles, and many other flaws that prevent them from achieving literary excellence. These games have invariably underestimated how popular they'll become and worked with cheap art assets and flimsy storytelling, only to fix this by hiring better artists and writers for the more recent arcs of their ongoing main storylines. However, even those recent arcs are still shallow experiences compared to VNs. The best they can do is have good comedy--no one will ever feel as empathetic toward the characters as they do in VNs. But of course, despite the problems with social games' storytelling, they are still... inevitable. They will still successfully rake in cash from people with personalities prone to gambling addiction. So one VN company after another has tried to become the next FGO. Eushully, light, August, Key, Lilith, Frontwing, Nitroplus and many others have pursued social games, virtually all of which failed to really take off like FGO--in part because they weren't very well-made, and in part because the Fate franchise is more popular with more devoted fans. Frankly, this solution has been thoroughly pursued by all sorts of VN companies, and we know exactly what happens: it fails unless they're very lucky. 2. Give up. This is a wise and fine choice. The river of life flows ever onward. Sometimes it's best to accept defeat. 3. Make NOT a visual novel. Be Kodaka Kazutaka. Start from the idea that you want to make an adventure game. Then to appease your producer, call it a detective game instead, and add a 3D world with gameplay that takes place within it while occupying a lot of the player's time, so it in no way feels like a pure ADV. Make the narrative largely dialogue-driven. Write in a way that wastes less time on subtlety and imagery and takes more advantage of humor, twists, and action. Then call it Danganronpa and be successful, while feeling that you tricked the world by making an adventure game with the quality storytelling of an adventure game that doesn't feel like an adventure game. Too Kyo Games plans to water down a full-fledged ADV-quality scenario with meaningful realtime gameplay, by partnering with studios that actually know how to make fun games. It's a long-term experiment on tricking people into playing adventure games. 4. Make a visual novel, but be better. Find a slightly new angle. Gather the A-Team. Target non-traditional markets. Cultivate one's prestige. In short, reorganize and rebrand. But still make a visual novel, with ordinary 2D art and probably little to no gameplay. The only problem is that people don't like VNs anymore because smartphones shrunk their brains until they had flea-sized attention spans. So at best, such "better" VNs will simply exist in the top tier of modern VNs, able to survive and maybe make a little profit. These are VNs for the sake of creators who want to stay in the VN industry despite how comparatively little it pays. Aniplex.exe, a new VN brand started under Aniplex that Makura staff like Sca-ji are involved with, seems to fall under this category. They're identifying as makers of "novel games" probably because that sounds more respectable these days than bishoujo game. I'm frankly more interested in Sca-ji's other still unannounced projects (but that's just because I'm not personally a fan of Konno Asta or Umihara Nozomu). 5. Copy FGO, but EVOLVE. Before Light's "Pantheon" mobile game died mid-development, Masada planned for it to have a substantial scenario. That kind of story would fatally clash, like matter and dark matter, with social games as they exist today. Unless they rethought the entire premise from scratch, I assume they'd have to at the very least dilute such a lengthy narrative into segments with constant breaks, rewards, and mini-games. And they'd have to make a tough choice about whether they seriously want to market it for smartphones, or stick to PC like Granblue Fantasy. It's easier to not evolve or just give up. But moreover, I think industry veterans are just pissed off and unable to accept that something as amazing as VNs can't find its consumers anymore. So they will struggle. Visual Arts will struggle, for sure. Key pretended to be half-dead in their 20th anniversary message, but they were actually hard at work. They've let Maeda take on the scenario of a high budget smartphone game called "Heaven Burns Red". Will he be able to do for social games with "Heaven Burns Red" what he did for VNs with "Kanon"? I'm not too optimistic, since I haven't seen any indication that the overall story concept was Maeda's. 6. ??? To quote Sca-ji, a writer who's qualified to talk about the unique worth of eroge, from late October: "People across various otaku industries have said, 'I want the wonderful culture of eroge to stay alive.' They're going out of their way and doing many things to make that happen. If I'm pessimistic, this might be our last chance to revive this industry, so I'm cheering them on. Do your best. ... People around their late twenties to thirty years old have started to take positions of power in society, praising eroge and doing many things for us." ZZZ 「Kanon」や「CLANNAD」「Angel Beats!」など…「泣きゲー」からアニメ原作まで、美少女IPを仕掛け続けた28年! ビジュアルアーツのユニークなブランド戦略と経営思想を馬場隆博社長に聞いてみた 『ダンガンロンパ』、『東京クロノス』、『グノーシア』の開発者が語る。「アドベンチャーゲームは滅ぶのか?」緊急座談会 「なぜエロゲ業界は衰退してるのか」 それをまとめた画像が話題にwwwww https://twitter.com/gannbattemasenn/status/1015644154271973376 https://enty.jp/avestan https://twitter.com/sca_di https://vndb.org/ EPILOGUE A new decade is upon is, and we're in the midst of a wave of 20th anniversaries that inevitably prompt retrospection. What I'm keeping an eye on, out of concern for the industry, as we enter it: - Too Kyo Games - Heaven Burns Red (unveiling on February 28) and Visual Arts as a whole - Sca-ji's Twitter account - Aniplex.exe as a whole - Any news from Masada about new publishers for Pantheon - Major non-adult scenarioge companies like Spike-Chunsoft and Mages (they may absorb some talent or try to carry on eroge culture) - Any actual new VNs from Nasu, like the Tsukihime remake ADDENDUM I: A Note on Death VS Decline (added 1/28)
  14. 3 points
    shiraki

    Greetings from China!

    Hi! I just discovered this community and joined right away. I live in North China, and have been a fan of VN (and anime, manga etc. as well) for a couple of years. Recently I've been reading Saihate no Ima, which I really think is a fantastic work, although I've only finished Azusa's and Sayaka's route. Feeling touched by the work, I decided to translate it (into Chinese, and maybe into English someday if still no one does it by then). But I don't have the knowledge of unpacking and repacking the game archive, so I joined to get some help. I speak fluent English and Japanese. In fact I've been learning Classical Japanese, so I'm quite confident in reading difficult texts. Anyway, Douzo yoroshiku onegai itashimasu.
  15. 3 points
    Zakamutt

    Goodbye

    k
  16. 3 points
    Damn I'm not even that much of an old hag yet but I feel this thread, this one game I started recently made me go all mom to the high and middle school kids like "I want to adopt them then pat their head, brush their hair and ask how was their day at school" while going all THIRST for those anime dudes in his late 20s early 30s thicc asses so I like ousans now thanks for coming to my ted talk
  17. 3 points
    GXOALMD

    What are you playing?

    By combining my knowledge of how storytelling works with my knowledge of how spoilers work, I've most likely inferred an appropriate hint: shit goes down.
  18. 3 points
    Today I wanted to talk a bit about an interesting project, and one that provided me with a unique opportunity to, for the first time, act as a proof-reader and do minor editing for a sizeable VN. Because of this personal involvement, this won’t be a full-on review, but more of a loose rant, highlighting both the worthwhile aspects of the game and my somewhat-peculiar experience with it. The VN in question, Bewitched is indeed a rather interesting one, as all games by Graven Visual Novels are – just as they are weighted down by extremely awkward translations from Russian and inherent flaws of their author’s prose. This time, however, the developer made their first attempt to work on properly polishing the game’s English script with the help of a few volunteers (including my gloriously dyslectic person). This move was quite likely inspired by the discussions I had with them regarding their previous projects and the problems with their English versions. If my involvement in the EVN scene ever made a tangible difference, this is the most concrete example of it, and I hope you’ll be willing to join me as I briefly explore what that difference actually is… Read the full article at evnchronicles.blogspot.com
  19. 3 points
    I had someone ask me why I consider some VN battle scenes to be good and others to be low quality just the other day, and I thought I would address this here. First, I should state that while visuals definitely have an effect on the quality of a battle scene, the quality of visuals is less than 15% of the reasons why I pick one VN's battle scenes over another's. The considerations when it comes to visuals are raw quality (artist skill, detail, etc), number of combat-related CGs and sprites, and the quality of the visual effects. More important (roughly 25% of the whole) is music and sound effects. It is quite possible to turn a VN whose visuals are mediocre and writing are good into a masterpiece based solely on how the BGMs and sound effects are used. I've seen it happen (Devils Devel Concept being a prime example), and I can honestly say that this aspect almost always trumps visuals when it comes to determining the quality of a given battle scene. Another 25% comes from context and presentation. I split this evenly because these two factors tend to be inter-dependent in battle scenes. Without the context, you can't tell whether you should care, and presentation (the art of bringing writing, sound, and visuals together to create a collaborative effect on the reader) quality can dramatically alter how you see the battle. The last 35% is all writing. My prejudice would have put it at 50%, but realistically, in a VN, writing is at the very least 35% of what determines the quality of a battle scene. The very simple reason is that making a battle scene interesting requires an eye for detail, for stringing descriptions of character actions, emotions, and words into a cohesive whole. There are plenty of writers outside of the VN industry who only do this well and literally are incapable of 'peaceful writing'. That is because what is demanded of writing during a battle scene is fundamentally different from what is demanded outside of battle scenes. To be blunt, most VN writers have no idea of how to write a battle scene, which is why the good ones stand out so much. 'Tom blasted magic sword at Dave, Dave took it on his shield with a grunt' is about as far as it goes with most VN battle scenes... and that is fairly horrid, since there is no sense of what is actually going on in that exchange. It isn't uncommon for VN makers with unskilled writers to simply substitute visual and sound effects for descriptions of the battle simply because the writer can only handle dialogue and minimal or copy-paste action lines. However, this results in amazingly boring scenes, since there is usually almost no variation in visual or sound effects from scene to scene, action to action. This means that they are essentially using a square block for a round peg. I don't know how many third-rate battle scenes I've fallen asleep to over the years... Anyway, ideally, a good battle scene should have all the elements come together in one cohesive whole. However, in practice, that almost never happens. About the only companies that have ever managed to do that consistently are Nitroplus, Light, and Propeller... and we all know what happened to Propeller and (more recently) Light.
  20. 3 points
    ittaku

    Spoilers: Great VN Phrases/quotes

    To Heart 2 (duh)
  21. 3 points
    People who drop themselves into the abyss of otaku media tend to have their sense for things dull over time. Action scenes don't excite like they used to, rom-coms aren't as funny, ecchi isn't as hot, and only the densest stories succeed in scratching the itch. This is what I (and some others) call becoming a 'jaded veteran otaku'. Jaded veteran otakus often become 'genre specialists' (meaning they only play one type of game, watch one type of anime, and/or refuse to play specific types), and only the most hypocritical have less than ten favorites in their medium. However, how exactly do you tell that a VN (in this case) is one of your favorites? There are a number of signs. 1. Does watching the opening get you excited no matter how many times you've seen it? 2. Does a great phrase that shattered your personal gate of tears do so again on a second playthrough? 3. Can it still make you giggle? 4. Can it still delight you with new discoveries or even only confirming the ones you made the last time you played? 5. Does defending it to everyone around you fill you with passion and do you have an intense desire to chain every other VN fan in site to a chair in front of a computer to play/read it? 6. Do you find yourself wistfully wondering if you'll ever find anything else like it again? 7. Do you feel like a junkie coming down off a great high after you finish it? These are just some of the signs of a VN happening to be your favorite... and one of the strange side-effects of being a long-time addict of otaku media is that your favorites become ever more distinct to you as time passes. I have literally forgotten the contents of more VNs than most people have played, but the ones I love remain in my memory with surprising detail, even after years without playing them. Not all of my favorites are kamige (in fact, surprisingly few of them are), but to me they are irreplaceable friends similar to the books I can never bring myself to get rid of.
  22. 3 points
    You’re talking to the new programming director of the largest EVN company in America right now. Your boi is moving up in the world.
  23. 3 points
    adamstan

    What are you playing?

    I just finished The Language of Love. It was short, but beautiful - very heartwarming. I wholeheartedly agree with @Plk_Lesiak's review. I liked almost everything about it - Tama's antics, the slow-paced, slightly awkward romance between Mitsuki and Kyouko, very tastefully done H-scene, with nice pillow talk afterwards... And some inspiring thoughts about relationships and life in general thrown here and there (maybe nothing new and unique, but it's nice to be reminded from time to time). Also, I feel like I could relate to a protagonist for a bit - at least when it comes to loneliness, and being awkward at relationships. (Although I am already way older than him...) 8/10 from me. On a side note - the Japanese setting of this VN seems pretty believable, which isn't that often the case when it comes to EVNs from what I gather The only other EVN I read that managed to pull that off was Katawa Shoujo. And then on the other side of the spectrum we have disasters like "No One But You... "
  24. 3 points
    If you're interested in something like this, but bigger, try this if you haven't already http://fuwanovel.se/genres.php
  25. 3 points
    adamstan

    What are you playing?

    Okay, finished Acting Lessons (completed all the routes and got all major endings. Didn't bother to uncover every single of little ending variations) It was really good. In addition to what I have already said, I agree that they did the protagonist's male friend thing really well. After hitting bad ending on the first playthrough, the good one was all the more satisfying. This VN surprised me a few times, made me shed some tears, and had some nice comedic bits as well. With 3D EVNs it's really hit and miss, since many of them are just plain nukiges, sex sims etc, but this one is really one of the gems. 8/10
  26. 3 points
    Time Wizard Studios: My journey started when I made this post on the Lemmasoft Forums, convinced of how easy it would be to make a lewd RenPy game. Well, 3 years and $15,000 dollars later, I can finally conclude that, actually, it is not that easy. But nevertheless, here we are! Before we get to the big reveal though, let me take you a little back. When I discovered this genre of gaming all those years ago, I was instantly hooked. I was having a blast playing and exploring the newly emerging market of Western Adult Games. But in the back of my mind, I knew I could make something better. So, I downloaded RenPy and got to work. Who knew that my scheduled daily fap session would set me on track to change my life forever. I wanted to create something that was more than just a hentai game. I wanted to immerse myself in the game. To wander around the setting, entering and exiting locations as I pleased. To have these backgrounds be filled with girls that I could talk or flirt with. To find items littered around each location, items that I could interact with, pick up, combine, give, or just plain investigate. To solve puzzles and mysteries, embark on quests, play mini-games, raise stats, and collect money. All while periodically getting my rocks off to doe-eyed cuties. So, I am very excited to show you the first release of our brand new interactive Adult Point-&-Click Adventure Game, meets Dating Simulator, meets Visual Novel — Another Chance! The Game: Another Chance stars a 20-something waste of space going nowhere fast. Through a series of mysterious circumstances, our protagonist receives a divine intervention and is granted another chance at life. You can’t invest in Bitcoin in this new timeline, but you could possibly hold some hands. Here is a little gif that shows what our game is about: https://i.imgur.com/v8FyBgs.mp4 But don’t worry, we’ve also got something for those of you who like your pixels stationary. Meet some of the girls you will be bumping into as your roam Newfall High’s hallways and corridors. https://i.imgur.com/arMH4fe.jpg And a couple of locations where the story takes place! https://i.imgur.com/ceA08jZl.jpg https://i.imgur.com/lkMvKFK.jpg https://i.imgur.com/KhLjKFL.jpg https://i.imgur.com/bGhMWjm.jpg The Future: That concludes my little town cry. For most of the developmental time, I was working from the shadows, but now I am very excited to become a regular poster in this community. The game is currently free, you can download and play the latest version, and if tickles your fancy, check out the Patreon. We plan to roll out new updates monthly. But truthfully, that is not what is most important to me. Really, I just want to foster this community. I feel a strong sense of acceptance and belonging from forums like this. So, above all else, play the game or not, enjoy it or hate it, support or freeload — in any case, you're welcome to join me on the Discord! Here is the Discord Link! https://discordapp.com/invite/KPRktG2 Here is a link to the Itch page where you can download the Mac, Linux, or Windows version. https://timewizardstudios.itch.io/anotherchance We’ll be waiting!
  27. 3 points
    ChaosRaven

    What are you playing?

    I've recently finished Kyonyuu Fantasy and its Gaiden fan disc (aka Funbag and Sideboob). Those were some real oddballs. Originally I tried the first one in Japanese years ago, but didn't like it and dropped it. When it got translated I gave it a new chance and read a bit occasionally. Still wasn't really convinced by the routes and was close to drop it again. Then I progressed a bit further and noticed that the real meat of the story is actually hidden in the harem route. That was rather unexpected since in most eroges (and not only nukiges) the harem routes are crap. I then continued right afterwards with Gaiden and finished that almost in one go. Having played both now I think I have a better picture of the series to accurately comment about it. The Kyonyuu Fantasy series is pretty much a fantasy parody around a very 'potent' looser protagonist who goes from zero to hero. While this isn't an unusual setting, there's an unusual heavy focus on story and character development. The fantasy world is surprisingly rich even for non-nukige standards and represents a medieval Europe setting with fantasy elements. There are several factions, with each having their own representative key characters and soldiers, and all of them drawn and voiced. This also includes an unusual high amount of male characters, with several of them even playing key roles in the story. And not just as villains, the world is surprisingly grey here. Many characters have their own beliefs, strengths and weaknesses and some might even start out as enemies and then turn into friends later on. There are frequently multiple interwoven intrigues going on. The similarities to medieval Europe are also striking, there's 'Fronce' which is clearly France, Spain is also mentioned as Iberia (?!) I think and even the Vatican plays an important role. Edellant itself seems to be a splinter state of the Holy Roman Empire, although the HRE probably doesn't exist as such in the game. That said, while the series definitely has some commendable merits, it also has its fair share of weaknesses. First and foremost, the titles have a strong B-movie feeling that can be a real turn-off. All the characters are voiced, but certainly not by the best voice actors the scene has to offer. All characters have sprites, but they've usually just one pose and some look akward or even painfullly bad. The music isn't bad but some tracks are heavily overused and get very repetitive and annoying after a while. The whole parody theme is also a bit of a double-edged sword. While it might make it easier to overlook some weaknesses, some characters and plot resolutions are also too silly and cheap and do more harm than good to the overall experience. Some characters also change too drastically during the story. The heroines in particular can go from literal hate and scorn towards the protagonist to almost worshipping him, appearing as if they would have been brainwashed. This being tagged as a nukige is also a bit ironic, because it's arguably its weakest point. The whole boob-fetish of the VN is more often than not just akward or even gross instead of arousing. The art isn't the best and certainly one of the main reasons I've never seen those titles amongst the top sellers on Getchu. The backgrounds are decent, but the character art is very hit and miss. Luceria is probably one of the most ugly heroines I've ever seen in a VN while Gladys looks almost two art generations more refined. While the later titles do show some slight improvements in the art department, I think Kyonyuu Fantasy 3 (Athena) and Gaiden 2 After (Irina) are the first ones where they appear more significant. H-scenes also often appear randomly thrown in instead of being developped, especially harem scenes. Heroine ranking: Gladys > Aphrodia = Emeralia > Isis >= Shamsiel > Nellis >> Roxanne >>> Luceria Overall rating: 6.5/10 (KF) and 7/10 (Gaiden) In general, I'm a bit irritated why Waffle insists to recreate pretty much the same title over and over again. They've good plot ideas and a very efficient usage of art - why aren't they striving for more? I'm sure that if they'd go for something more serious, they could reach a bigger audience.
  28. 2 points
    Plk_Lesiak

    What are you playing?

    So, I've actually been reading stuff lately... I'm pretty shocked myself, to be honest! And surprise surprise, Sakura Fox Adventure is short, derivative, unpolished garbage put together from unused assets made years ago! Who would've thought? Anyway, it seems I've stopped finding these games amusing lately even in an ironic way. They turned mundane from their sheer number, to the point even their failures are exactly the same every time and it's not fun to pick on them. As a change of pace, I've also read Sweetest Monster and despite the fact I spoiled it to myself a while ago, I'm still sick to my stomach after finishing it. Quite literally. It's not the gore'y kind of horror, but a psychological one and it does A LOT to make the reader uncomfortable. I love how ebi-hime writes this kind of stories and the impact of this one is quite similar to that of Lynne... But this might be even more impactful, thanks to the art and that one demon catgirl who I'm quite likely to see my in nightmares for the next few days. And staying with ebi-hime's work, her newest VN, Rituals in the Dark is... Not very impactful, to be honest. It's a fine story, but in the end it leaves the romance kind of unresolved and doesn't do anything that would stick with me, like most other ebi's titles did. In its minimalism, in a strange way, it reminds me of Lucky Me, Lucky You, but I didn't feel the similar charisma from the characters or a thought-provoking message. Maybe I was expecting a bit too much, but I think among all of ebi's stories, this is the one I'll remember the least in the long run, despite it theoretically combining things I very much enjoy (creepy climate and yuri). I've also started reading Katawa Shoujo, now getting to the end of the common route and it's extremely charming. The heroines are immediately likeable and I really enjoy how the story is developing. I'm also really curious how some of the routes will look like, including those less liked (I mean, I have a hard time imagining Shizune romance...). I might be super-late to this party, but I'm definitely going to enjoy it a lot. :3
  29. 2 points
    You probably saw many cataclysms in stories you’ve read or watched in the past. Disasters that were natural, technological or magical in nature, limited in scale or apocalyptic, resulting in short-lived crises or civilisation-ending. From Muv-Luv through Swan Song to I Walk Among Zombies, plot-oriented visual novels never shied away from presenting these kinds of scenarios, and along with literature, they’re uniquely positioned to explore deeper consequences they could have for both individuals and whole societies. Fallstreak, a free game released on Steam on October 2018 as a debut title of a small studio under the name Centicerise Productions, is one less-common EVNs tackling this topic. It does so by focusing heavily on a group of people affected by such a catastrophic event – mostly average folk, crippled physically and emotionally by the mysterious Fire of Collapse that ravaged their isolated country without a warning or identifiable source. It’s also, generally speaking, a wonderfully-produced piece of VN that I’m wary of recommending to people due to its surprisingly extreme content and open-ended story, quite clearly meant as an introduction to its world and a prologue to future games utilizing the same setting. So, what are the main reasons to check it out, or to skip on visiting the fantasy realm of Socotrine at least until Fallstreak’s continuation shows up? The amount of stories-within-a-story and subplots that are never elaborated upon makes Fallstreak feel more like a prologue leading to a proper story than a standalone experience Fallstreak’s Steam page claims that the game’s protagonist is Adelise Cotard, the daughter of Socotrine’s ruler and a little girl with a mind of an adult. Atypically mature due to the time she spends in the Golden Dream, a lucid dreamworld full of knowledge which she enters nearly every night, Ade is indeed the character through which we initially experience the story. These introductory chapters, rather relaxed and light-hearted, mostly follow her and her group of friends through some everyday situations – a normal life in which only physical scars some of them bear and occasional reminiscence hint at the dramatic past. However, she’s neither sole focus nor the only protagonist of the game. In its second half, when we start learning about other characters’ backstories and the details of Fire of Collapse though flashbacks, she’s not only pushed to the background but mostly absent, with crucial events taking place before she was even born. At this point, the game switches perspectives on a regular basis, focusing mostly on various members of the Lirit family, whose children are Adelise’s classmates in a private school for those orphaned or otherwise affected by the cataclysm. In the meantime, we’re also introduced to a ton of information about Socotrine itself, a land isolated from the outside world by the apparently impassable, magical mist. Its impoverished, but stable history was shaken up by the arrival of a refugee convoy from beyond the barrier, around 20 years before the game’s main events. Bringing with them advanced technology and knowledge of the outside world, refugees affected drastically both the land’s political balance and the way of life of its people. Eventually, the convoy’s “Lost Children” revolted against the ruling aristocracy of Socotrine and brought in an era of prosperity. At the same time, the game opens many questions about their origins, actions after traversing the mist and their connection to the Fire of Collapse which nearly destroyed the whole realm. Adelise’s personal story is also apparently related to much of this, with the Golden Dream, her father’s dethronement of the Lost Children’s leader and her mother’s death all signalized as mysteries crucial to understanding Socotrine’s predicaments, although without many hints on how they’re actually significant. Fallstreak’s story turns bleak without much warning and introduces scenes that wouldn’t be out of place in the darkest of horror stories – it’s not a VN for those faint of heart If this sounds like a lot to fit into a relatively short, 80k-word VN, it definitely is. I also skipped a number of lore details and subplots that could be considered spoilers, and as you can imagine, very few of those receive any kind of answer or satisfying conclusion. The game does not shy away from extensive infodumps and introducing character after character, many of them either signalizing stories that might be told in the future or being little more than exposition props. It also includes allegorical stories told by various characters, which further draw the readers attention away from its actual plot-points and protagonists. At times the memorable, high-quality visual design and solid characterisation are main things preventing it from devolving into an incomprehensible mess. The unique characters and the sheer beauty of all visual assets make it easier to get immersed in the world and look past the absolute overload of story threads the game bombards you with, without ever tying most of them together. While the pacing is definitely an issue in Fallstreak, the most problematic part might still be its tone: it often jumps from rather relaxing slice-of-life moments to unsettling mysteries, and then to over-the-top tragedy and absolutely grotesque violence. The aforementioned backstory of the Lirits is full of gut-wrenching moments, drastic enough to disturb even a relatively experienced and desensitized reader like me. I’m not sure all of them belonged in this story – some very much balanced on the border of absurdity and if they had a real narrative function beyond the sheer shock factor, it’s not clear at this point. It’s not a massive problem if you can handle that kind of content, but it definitely makes Fallstreak not an experience for everyone, especially because the intensity of these segments was not properly signalized by previous events and very much caught me by surprise. The visual design of Fallstreak is impeccable and helps a lot in fleshing out its characters and world, making them surprisingly memorable If what I wrote so far paints a pretty bleak picture, it’s because Fallstreak’s problems could’ve been fatal if not for how just this polished and well-put-together it is. The prose and dialogue, despite the heavy exposition and anachronistic jokes that I’m not sure make sense in the setting, are very solid. Elements such as character’s speech patterns and personality quirks save them from being forgettable in the overcrowded storyline. And in the end, it’s the beautiful visuals and music that really make it stand out. The characters look distinct and expressive, while backgrounds and CGs are hard to take your eyes off. The assets are also pretty abundant for a free VN, with just enough environments, sprite variants and full illustrations to consistently keep things fresh. The original soundtrack is very climatic, with mostly sombre piano tunes underlining the sad reality of the game’s world. It all comes together in a way that I’m not sure I’ve seen in another free VN. So, ultimately, what do I make out of Fallstreak? It’s definitely not a bad game and the main problems it suffers from came rather from the developers being overly ambitious than a lack of effort. They definitely tried to fit too much into one package and didn’t follow up properly with new chapters. If I read it right and it is a starting point for a commercial franchise, we should already be seeing much more concrete signals about its continuation than the sporadic teasers present on the developer's social media. It’s not an abandoned project, considering I was directly approached by the studio behind it not a long time ago and the latest updates on the continuation are fairly recent, but whether you should read it depends mostly on whether you’re ok with reading a story that is essentially unfinished (and is going stay like that for a while), and whether you're willing to deal with its grimdark elements. For me, it was definitely worth the time I’ve spent reading it and as a free VN, that time is all it will ever ask from you. Final Score: 3/5 Pros: + Beautiful visuals + Climatic soundtrack + Memorable main characters Cons: – Frequent infodumps and clunky exposition – Gets over-the-top with the brutality of the backstories – Feels more like a prologue than a full story VNDB Page Play Fallstreak for free on Steam
  30. 2 points
    So, I mentioned this in another thread but I'm currently reading Fata Morgana and dear lord, they weren't lying when they said it's a VN about people suffering. Just finished door 7 and that was really painful. Much like a lot of VNs I rated in the 9s it have pure sadness backstories so it's looking good for the final score of FataMoru. And from those feelings that comes my question. Who are the characters that you think that suffered so much you can't help but want to protect them from all evil? Or well, characters that have the most awful backstories that even if they deserved it because they're awful themselves you still feel pity for them? Alternatively, I know some people might not like to go through stories that aren't only happy feelings all around, then did you ever felt like crying because some route outcome was so so happy and so so satisfying or is it just me? Let's relive those tragedies, bring me your tears.
  31. 2 points
    Plk_Lesiak

    Goodbye

    That's kind of overkill, but hey, doing a hard reset on your Internet activity sounds kind of cool too. I'd like to do that with my life, but last time I've checked, things don't work that way. Anyway, have fun with your new incarnations.
  32. 2 points
    I would wait for the remake or play the ero-capable PC version. It's your choice. The original on PC is a pretty awesome story, but the game system is pretty third-rate, even by the standards of the age (to give you an example, the only two characters who could inflict serious damage on enemies at the end in my party were Karura and Hakuoro, lol). Until I play the remake (which I plan to do), I'm unwilling to state which is better. However, Utawarerumono was one of those games where the ero actually 'fit', at least in some cases, so I honestly don't know how I'm going to feel at the end. Edit: Incidentally, the reason my damage was so low with the others was because I was pretty careless with how I handled stat points, lol. However, I was able to beat the last boss with those two alone, so it all worked out in the end, hahahaha.
  33. 2 points
    Ds-sans is a British VN developer whose work I've been following since the times I started writing my blog, first being charmed by his free romance game Sounds of Her Love, (check out my review of it here). Released on Steam March 2017, this very tame and heartwarming, small love story was extremely by-the-numbers and rather cliched, but stood out through its solid execution and likeable heroine. Later, I’ve checked out this author’s first VN, Lost Impressions, which also proved enjoyable despite being something of a mess visually and including edgy story elements typical for many beginner VN writers – a rather standard amateur project, but showing traces of genuine talent. As you can imagine, I was quite interested in reading ds-sans’ first commercial VN, Chemically Bonded, announced and successfully crowdfunded in late 2017. It promised to continue the wholesome, romantic climate of Sounds of Her Love, but with a more in-depth, branching story and better production values – pretty much a product catered exactly to someone like me, who enjoys fluffy slice-of-life content in VNs over pretty much everything else. After a full year of delays, the game finally came out on November 2019, proving to be… Very much a mixed bag. But, what could go wrong with a concept this straightforward and such a promising background? Read the full article at evnchronicles.blogspot.com
  34. 2 points
    So, as we're still in the time of yearly recollections and were talking recently about VNs we liked the most, what are the titles that crushed your hopes and dreams? Which ones were not plain bad, but rather fell short of your's and everyone else's expectations, to the point of turning your hearts into an emotionless void? For me, the answer is pretty simple: Crystalline and (sorry @ds-sans :() Chemically Bonded. Both games were really well-produced visually and had good sound designs, but absolutely fell apart when it goes to telling a story. The main difference between them is that while Crystalline was absolutely devoid of meaningful plot and tension, Chemically Bonded made a few bizarre missteps with its writing and structure of the story, breaking the flow of the romance, particularly in the tsundere heroine's route. Neither were anywhere close to being among worst EVNs of the year, but definitely had most wasted potential. So, what are your guys' greatest regrets of 2019 in VN form? :3
  35. 2 points
    Clephas

    VNs with good world building.

    In Hapymaher's case, the protagonist's and antagonist's perceptions (conscious, subconscious and otherwise) defined the setting at any given time, with some interaction from the heroines. In that sense, the world was fluid, but vagueness about how much was reality and how much was dream was deliberately orchestrated the way it was, to give the impression of the lines being blurred between the two. World-building isn't just something like Dir Lifyna's grand setting, but also the more immediate setting. In that sense, Hapymaher does an excellent job. Moreover, even characters can be considered world-building elements, depending on their roles. I honestly consider Maia to be one of the single most powerful living world-building elements I've ever seen in a VN, lol. Edit: I'm going to go ahead and clarify my viewpoint on what I consider to be world-building. First, world-building is an aspect of creating the setting. The difference between the creation of a setting and world-building primarily lies in unique lore or aspects that require you to step beyond what can be called 'common sense' or 'things you should know as a matter of course'. As such, the creation of a high school setting in a charage wouldn't be considered world-building. However, the creation of a unique aspect of such a school - such as the election system in Primal Hearts - would be considered world-building, as this aspect does not exist as a base template of what a high school is. Similarly, merely placing a story in a typical fantasy setting is not an act of world-building. However, adding unique cultural elements, filling in details of daily life for the average person, etc are world-building elements. In the end, world-building is an extension of establishing the setting, where the writer fills in the gaps left by the template he/she is working from. Do you have elves? An elf is a template. What kind of culture do the elves have? That is world building (if you aren't working from an obvious template, lol).
  36. 2 points
    Ranzo

    Most disappointing VNs of 2019?

    Hmmm, since I technically finished it in 2019 I'd say Tokyo Babel. It had some good characters and some genuinely interesting ideas and themes but I felt it really fell short of putting forth a cohesive and likable narrative. To me I think that one of the major issues lies with just how bland and utterly boring the protag is. Everything about him was just vacuous and empty and it made the awkward and clumsy attempts at romance(or what little their was) even worse because I could never see how anyone could have a connection with him. Like I know that he's supposed to be stoic and all but that's no excuse for giving him the personality of a chunk of concrete. I wished they had kept Sorami as the protag instead of relegating her as just a major character. I really feel like this was a missed opportunity to make this vn an otome considering there were a lot of interesting male characters on display. Also, while the setting and lore of the story was pretty interesting I think it again fell short. Making it a school setting was a bizarre and frankly stupid choice because of just how little they actually addressed that. Like, I get that in Japanese media literally everything has to be set in a high school or else Japan will sink into the sea, but I hoped for something a little different. I also guess that it kind of makes sense that purgatory would be set in a high school. Something that I also was detrimental to Babel was just the shear amount of fucking info dumps this story has. The story reads like some dude failed to finish his thesis on Jewish and Christian mythology and just decided to cram all that information into the plot of this vn instead. Like, holy shit there are just a constant torrent of names and places that the vn just assumes that we are supposed to be familiar with. Even with my relative grasp on mythology and such I still had to google plenty of these damn names. It made me wonder how the Japanese audience made due with this since most of this shit had to be completely foreign to them. It's like Fate Stay Night on the most aggressive steroids. Still another thing that held the vn back was the fights themselves. They started off interesting but they soon wore off their welcome in that they never seemed to fucking know when to end. They went on forever. Every fight had to be as drawn out and laborious as possible. Oh and let's not forget about all that constant fucking screaming that went on during the battles. was so fucking annoying dude whenever he showed up on screen. Anyway, I didn't like it all that much and basically it's only saving grace was how great a character Lilith was. Without her, I wouldn't've finished playing it. Chaos;Head was also pretty disappointing overall thanks to how utterly loathsome I found the protag to be, like I get that's part of how he's designed but it still kept me from giving a shit about him. I also found the mystery to be not all that interesting and I don't really remember most of it anyway. I was supposed to have played this game since 2013 or so but could never get it to run. It wasn't really worth that wait.
  37. 2 points
    Plk_Lesiak

    Your Favorite VN of 2019?

    Scanning through my VNDB I realized how few fresh releases I actually read in 2019... From the few I can actually talk about, Heart of the Woods and The Language of Love would be my favourites. And if I had to choose one favourite (as opposed to "the best VN"), it would be... The Language of Love. It just resonated with me in multiple ways and did the thing ebi-hime does best: conveying emotions and themes that are more or less absent from your typical visual novel storytelling.
  38. 2 points
    Clephas

    Spoilers: Great VN Phrases/quotes

    As the title says, this is a thread where you can post your favorite VN quotes. When posting the quotes, remember to note the VN they are from, the names of the characters speaking, and the translation if the quote is in Japanese. Remember to place all quotes in spoiler boxes with the game name over them so that those who don't want to be spoiled don't have to be. Semiramis no Tenbin Inpyuri
  39. 2 points
    Clephas

    Your Favorite VN of 2019?

    Kimagure Temptation or Realive. Kimagure Temptation was yet another good one by the makers of Nanairo Reincarnation, and Realive was another great plotge/nakige by Purple Soft. Most of the other stuff I tried was 'meh' at best. Edit: Nvm, I thought Sakura, Moyu was 2018. Definitely Sakura, Moyu, by several degrees above everything else.
  40. 2 points
    Stormwolf

    What are you playing?

    House in fata morgana. Absolutely wonderful so far. First story was predictable for the most part (Didn't know why or how, but what would happen was glaringly obvious once the pieces were on the board), but told in a wonderful way. I loved it. Second.. Man what a ride. Can't wait to finish it after work The true pity of this game is the cheap feel to it. Bad background images, so-so character art, so-so music for the most part and no voice acting.
  41. 2 points
    wei123

    What are you playing?

    I can't compare the remake and the original, since I haven't played the latter, but I would say that the voices fit each character just fine. I know there are others who find the original voices to be superior, but I actually find the new voices pretty decent. The translation looks good too, but they apparently changed As for your second question, I don't think there are any of those in the first place, so thank goodness for that. However, the sexual content is still there, except that it's all implicit instead of explicit.
  42. 2 points
    Plk_Lesiak

    Fuwanovel Confessions

    Confession 1: For the 80th time I got rid of all the mobage and generally non-VN games I was playing and I'm trying to get my daily routine back in order. One day it will work, I'm sure... Confession 2: After two days of fighting on the frontlines of an intense flamewar, I got myself banned (temporarily) from the Libyan Civil War subreddit. There's a chance it's my first ban ever on a discussion board/forums of any sorts. At least, I can't think of another one and in the past, I would be pretty shaken by such a thing. In this case, I'm kind of glad, because I should've stopped posting there a lot earlier... I guess I just really don't like Erdogan and everything associated with him...
  43. 2 points
    We have an official Ninetail discord as well! Kaede's Corner It's a public server that was made for fans of our games to gather and chat, be it about our games in specific channels or about unrelated things in the general channels. Whether or not it can be considered 'notable' enough to be listed on here, I'm not entirely sure, but it can certainly get pretty active.
  44. 2 points
    Seraphim88

    What are you playing?

    That was pretty much my exact reaction when I found it. At first, I thought the high rating might be because of the joke/meme reviews that commonly plague Steam, but I decided to give it a go anyways since it was pretty cheap. Long story short, I think it deserves the praise it has received. At its core, it's basically just a slice of life drama (like you said), but it's presented in such a brilliant and impactful way that I played through the entire VN, all routes included, in a single sitting (totaling maybe 10 hours), simply because I couldn't manage to put it down. I honestly can't think of any Japanese VNs to compare it to off the top of my head, because this felt much more real to me than those usually do; probably in part due to the fact that some of stuff is based on the developer's personal experiences, and coincides with my own on several occasions.
  45. 2 points
    I've seen some comments and reviews posted that introduce the specific setting, characters, and story elements of this VN. This topic is going to be a more general/analytical writeup on the themes and overall presentation. Now don't get me wrong. I'm not trying to downplay the dark/depressing elements. In fact, a handful of events may not be for the faint of heart, and the endings aren't always the happiest. However, mostly referring to these elements really downplays the true experience of BokuTen and may stop people interested from checking it out. Bokuten actually has a good mix of legit emotional, heartfelt, heartwarming, and most of all, bittersweet moments. This might be an overused word to some people, but Bokuten is essentially a "Deconstruction" on the meaning of love and happiness. Moeges, charages, and even some storyge with romance tend to build towards some mostly happy ending where everything turns out alright. Bokuten tends to ponder both the positives and negatives of a romantic relationship and what it's built on. Is truly getting together no matter what the best possible outcome for everyone? Who and what gets affected when you confess and/or get together? Can you really handle and love the other person unconditionally, flaws and all? All of these questions, and more, are potential themes to think about when you're reading through the story. Similarly, it also raises the question of what the true meaning of happiness is and how to obtain it. This is a big theme for various characters. In addition to these two important themes, Bokuten still has a lot of what it's in typical visual novels. It has comedy and lighthearted moments with some unique humor and some you see often (thank god there's no tsundere hitting humor). It has an MC that's oblivious to some romance, but obvious to everyone else. But the MC has a legit reason for feeling that way, and has much more personality (in a sarcastic/blunt sense) than others. If you've watched the Oregairu/SNAFU anime, think of him like Hachiman, but a darker take. Alternatively, think of him like Yuuji from Grisaia but instead of saying things to specifically troll and get on people's nerves, he is just that serious and to the point about what he thinks. It also has a common route, but it's one of the most unique and interesting common routes I can think of in visual novels. While there are still slice of life comedy scenes as stated above, they aren't too long and each chapter gets to the meat of its drama pretty quickly. The common route is kind of a mix between Sharin/G-sen's chapter system and ef. The decisions you have to make can be difficult and the themes build heavily into what to expect in the actual heroine routes. Speaking of choices, a big theme is the general grey area of what's the 'right' choice. Compared to most visual novel choices that are simply ways to get involved with heroines faster, every single Bokuten choice is a heavy hitting one that at least makes you think and there may not even be a clear right answer. Sometimes the characters struggle with these choices themselves without input from the player. Similar to real life, not every choice is just a simple way to get something. There may be sacrifice needed in order to achieve what you want. In conclusion, while it is fair to call Bokuten a dark/depressing utsuge given how some endings play out, there's a lot more to it as stated above. If you're interested in finding a character oriented visual novel with more story than usual, but the utsuge comments deterred you, hopefully this post can help you reconsider. If you like utsuges and just wanted more motivation to read this, even better!
  46. 2 points
    Mr Poltroon

    inquiry evenicle

    Trust Zakamutt over me. I have no trust in my memory of the particular scene or even others. (Zakamutt, you preferred to write 'previous poster' rather than alter the name. Astonishing.)
  47. 2 points
    ArgentstR

    What are you playing?

    Definetely one of my gripes with Hapymaher, if you want to have panty shots keep them out of scenes where they are blatantly contrasting the mood in the scene.
  48. 2 points
    Clephas

    Romance VNs in a fantasy setting

    Ikusa Megami Zero Kamidori Alchemy Meister (basically all of Eushully's Dir Lifyna games) Ou no Mimi ni wa Todokanai Any Kyonyuu Fantasy game Princess Frontier Hyakka Ryouran Elixir Racial Merge Curio Dealer Boku no Te no Naka no Rakuen Bullet Butlers (well, technically it is a 1920's style setting, but elves, dwarves, lizardmen, and dragons are all around, lol) Ryuukishi Bloody Saga Primary ~Magical★Trouble★Scramble~ Ouzoku Valkyrie Runabout Sekai o Sukuu Dake no Kantan na Oshigoto
  49. 2 points
    @eplipswich I recognize that you have a life and the speed and quality of the translation/editing may not remain consistent. Thus I think it might be prudent to release the main story first and then a separate patch for the side stories due to the unknown release date. I probably wouldn't play the side stories immediately after finishing the main story; I'd take a break. Admittedly I've very eager to play it XD But that's just me. Idk if other people would be the same way. And of course it's up to you for how to release this. You've done absolutely wonderful work and I'm grateful for what you've done either way. Thank you!!
  50. 2 points
    Same issue here, also a lot of the wording is wrong, a lot of the choices shown here do not match with what the visual novel has. I fixed it up: Loading from save 5 doesn't do anything even after reading through all previous endings, I did notice a branching point after you return the shard in the callander but the choice never shows up, does this mean loading from save 5 isn't the way to go about getting into Aine's route? It almost seems like you need to start from the begining to get into her route. It seems like the issue I was having was because I loaded a save file that didn't choose to return the shard in every choice thus is the reason Anie's route branch didn't show up. All choices are now worded correctly has they appear in the visual novel. I never make walkthrough guides here myself because I do not agree with their rules they enforce for making one and also the fact I lose ownership of my own thread which isn't right at all and no one should be okay with that.
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