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Showing most liked content since 12/21/16 in all areas

  1. Now that you've all been baited, Merry Christmas to all of you nerds (and non-nerds, I don't discriminate)
    19 likes
  2. Catgirls (and anthropomorphic humans in general) are a big fetish in the otaku media. The cat ears have become a staple of moe culture, a status symbol of what defines cuteness. Yet, whenever I play an eroge featuring such creatures, I often times find myself not enjoying a lot of the cutesy physical attributes of these specimen. Why is that? As I delved into my thoughts, I finally pieced together the reason for these feelings: catgirl discrimination What do I mean by this? It's simple. Catgirl discrimination is a common phenomenom in eroge (and even non-erotic titles) whereby catgirls are introduced as being an important part of a fictional setting, yet they are treated as less than humans throughout the story. Through my hours of research, I found that often times, animal girls in eroge are introduced as mere plot devices for sexual activity rather than fleshed out characters you can emphasize and form bonds with. Now this by itself isn't too surprising. After all, even when there's no catgirls involved, a lot of these games tend to focus on achieving a relationship status with another female human character. However, the difference between the latter and the former is that when humans are involved, they are treated as beings with intelligence. They are equal to the protagonist who wants to romance them. Yes, one can argue about the inherent misogyny in a lot of these titles, but that's beyond the point I'm making. The fact is, human girls are treated, well, like humans (as they should). But when it comes to catgirls, they are typically treated as less than human. They are dehumanized and turned into a creature akin to a pet. "What's the problem with that? They aren't humans, so of course they're not treated as such" you say. Ah yes, a fair point my dear reader, but let me ask you this then: Would you have sexsual intercourse with your cat or your dog? The answer is most likely "no" (if it is yes, please seek counceling. I heard PETA fines aren't anything to scoff at.) Therein lies the issue I have. Catgirls have primary human features, and yet they're often times treated as pets in most games. Why would you date someone who you treat like a pet? It makes little sense to me. Now you might say "it's just a porn game, it's for fetishistic purposes". And of course I can 100% concede to that. In fact, I myself find it to be a nice fetish to have somebody submissive to you act like a pet. There's nothing wrong with that. However, humans are more than their genitals, and their personalities go beyond the confines of the bedroom. In real life, even when we're talking about people who are into things like BDSM, there is still a human connection beyond their sexual life. No human *literally* becomes slave to another human, they mutually agree to have this type of relationship, and they ultimately see each other as equal in the relationship. Yet with catgirls, they are introduced as nothing more than instruments for sex 90% of the time, and even beyond the bedroom they're still just a pet that will obey anything and everything their owner tells them to. I can not concede that this is a healthy form for a relationship at all. Think about it. What is the point of dating somebody that always sees themselves and acts as inferior to you? Where is the happiness in dating someone with no consciousness, who's joy comes from eating food and sexually pleasing you? That is why I can not get behind most games featuring catgirls. To me, a relationship partner must be equal to me in status. I don't want to treat my significant other as a pet, but as a human being. I don't want to take them out on walks with a leash, I want to go on dates holding hands with them and eat a giant parfait together, and then pass out on a bench because the parfait was too big and we now feel like throwing up. I want script writers to write visual novels about worlds where catgirls are just like other humans. They just so happen to have cat ears and a tail and sometimes say "nya". I want them to be more than things you own that can't live by themselves without you taking care of them. That's what babies and dogs are for, not girlfriends. This is not to say I want the end of all games featuring submissive cat girls, that's still a very valid fetish, but I believe it's unfair to treat them like that in almost every single game, especially games where the focus is supposed to be the story and the characters. How can you say you have a game with great characters when those characters are seen as less than human? Games like nekopara thrive even though every single catgirl in it is portrayed as a brainless creature that goes into heat at random times and can only survive if the protagonist "relieves" them. Why must they act like animals this much? Why can't they just be regular human beings who you form a real bond with instead of an "owner x pet" relationship? In conclusion, I believe catgirls are heavily discriminated against when it comes to visual novels. They are beings that need to be given a conscioussness and a will to act on their own, not to become mere cheap tools for one's sexual pleasure. They have a lot of love to offer to the world, and we should start appreciating them for that, because who knows when they'll go extinct. Let's make the world a better place and stop catgirl discrimination. Every catgirl deserves to be portrayed as a being with a brain and a heart.
    18 likes
  3. Hi everyone . Thank you for helping me cope with my dad's funeral earlier. About a month has passed since his death. I am back at work and things are generally okay. Our family stuck together during Christmas and had a great time, though there is a sadness in the background because we all know someone is missing. Work helped to distract me from these thoughts, but I felt sad again during the Christmas break. Still a bit up and down. We have been given a recording of my dad's cremation ceremony. Turned out I didn't have to press that button to send him into the fire. I actually wanted to, but they closed the curtains after the ceremony ended, and I never got to see the casket again. Next time I dropped by, they handed me the urn with my dad's ashes in it. I guess they believe it's too cruel to make loved ones press that button. No one in my family wants anything to do with that video, but I copied the file onto my laptop, and I'd click through it once in a while. I'm not sure if that's healthy, but I can't help it. It's not like I watch it 24 hours a day. Maybe a skim once every week or two. The video doesn't make me sad, but just kind of empty. Another confession is, I regret not taking a photo of my dad in his casket. The casket is closed the whole time during that video, so I'll never again get to see him in his final state. I know it'd be so inappropriate to take a picture during a funeral, but I got to spend some time alone with his body in the hospital, so I could've done it then, but I couldn't bring myself to do it. If I had taken a photo, I'd open my phone once in a while to stare longingly at a picture of a dead guy. Not sure if that's messed up. I admit sometimes I open his photos on my laptop, and I touch my screen as if I can somehow remember what it feels like to touch him. A lot of things that might seem cringe worthy, but I can't deny I'm doing them. I put all the old videos of my dad into a folder as well. When he first died, I watched through all the clips almost right away, yet now, even though I feel like I've recovered, I can't bring myself to click on those videos. Somehow, I can watch that film of him in a casket, but not ones where he's still alive and moving. If I hear his voice again, I'll mistakenly think he's come back to life, and that will just hurt far too much. I had a dream about my dad recently. It's Chinese New Year, and my relatives came into the house to spend time with us. My dad followed them in when I opened the door. I freaked out, but no one else seemed to notice his presence. He was all smiles and well dressed. Since he spent his final years quite ill, I had not seem him this happy in a long time. When our eyes met, he gave me a winking, "don't tell anyone" sort of look. After that, he didn't look my way again, and he didn't say a word throughout. Instead, he just looked around the house, acting excited, a bit childlike. I woke up straight after that. The Chinese people believe spirits can communicate with us through dreams. I have no idea if that's real, but the dream brightened my day. Chinese New Year is coming in a few weeks, and our family agreed that when our relatives visit, we will leave the door open for an extra second or two. Thank you everyone .
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  4. We were disappointed by the stretch goals as everyone (we really wanted to translate IkaBey too), but what seriously ticked us off was that light posted the WIP unedited screenshots on steam that we specifically asked them not to use because they had problems. Steiner is really passionate about this project, and all he meant was that there are many ways this kickstarter could have been handled better. I think it actually stands testament to how passionate Dies core fanbase is that this kickstarter is doing as well as it is, especially given Chusingura's performance earlier in the year... which was another really good game. Anyway, thanks for your support guys and I hope we can get this thing funded so I can finally concentrate on my actual work.
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  5. Ambiguity is a fascinating element of language, one an editor both struggles with and celebrates regularly. On the celebration side of things, ambiguity is an essential tool in the setup of a lot of short jokes, for one. As an example, an ambiguous statement leads to a misunderstanding, and in a VN said misunderstanding usually leads to an accidental love confession, resulting in the unfortunate victim stammering outrageously while blushing like a sunset. How cute. Ambiguity can also be a powerful tool in foreshadowing, since it allows a single statement to be interpreted in two ways, of which one can be applicable to the immediate present, thus making it a perfectly reasonable line to have in the present, and the other only meaningful when considering future events, usually causing the reader to look back and say, "Ahh-hah, now I see what it really meant." Ambiguity is also absolutely essential in writing clever blog post titles. But on the struggling side, ambiguity is often an enemy getting in the way of your reader enjoying your text. As you read, your brain furiously analyzes words as they come in, building up and tearing down many possible syntactical structures for the sentence and many possible semantic interpretations of the various words and phrases, before eventually trimming this all down to a single interpretation of the sentence, typically over the course of a tiny fraction of a second. However, there are many stumbling blocks which can lengthen this process or thwart it entirely, notably including actual errors (misspellings, dropped words, incorrect grammar, etc.,), which is probably the chief reason why such errors are so frowned-upon in typical writing. Slowing down the reader's understanding, or preventing it entirely, is generally not the author's goal, assuming said author is not James Joyce. Setting aside actual errors, ambiguity is one of the main impediments to a reader's understanding. Since one of a VN editor's chief goals is to ensure a script flows well for a reader, eliminating unintentional ambiguity is an important sub-goal. Even outside of intentional usage like in the cases mentioned in the first paragraph, ambiguity in English is still incredibly common, with small ambiguities cropping up constantly while reading essentially any text. Let's take a look at an example of a super-small ambiguity which slows down the reader just a tiny bit, a sentence containing my least favorite word: Looks fine, right? As a whole the sentence is totally unambiguous. But while you're reading it, you're going to run into "that", and "that"'s a problem. "That" is an incredibly flexible word in the English language: it's a pronoun, a determiner, an adverb, and a relative pronoun. It's actually even more flexible in British English, where it can act as a subordinating conjunction, and even though most VN translations are written in American English, the lines there are pretty fuzzy, and it wouldn't be surprising or confusing to see a sentence like "He asked that she go" in a VN. Now, in the sentence above, "that" is being used as a relative pronoun, but the prefix of this sentence, "I told you that" is also a perfectly well-formed English sentence in which it's instead being used as a pronoun, and if your brain follows such an interpretation immediately as you read the sentence, it'll take it a few extra milliseconds for your brain to unwedge itself, reorganize into treating "that" as a relative pronoun, and continue on forming the correct interpretation. All right, doesn't sound like a big deal, does it? You're right. This particular, single instance isn't. But they add up, and you can do better, so you might as well. To put it in super technical jargon I didn't know until I was writing up this post, English has a so-called "zero relative pronoun" which can be used in place of relative pronouns like "that" which are introducing restrictive relative clauses. To give an example, since the previous jargon is so technical as to be basically useless, instead of the above sentence, you can just drop "that" and write: Now, look, I'm not saying this makes a huge difference, but doesn't this version feel a tiny bit better when you read it? Eliminating usage of overly-flexible words like "that" is a good way to reduce some ambiguity, but keep in mind this is a single example of a specific case. It just happened to be the one which prompted this blog post. However, I assure you, if you start reading your work with a careful eye out for the clarity of each line, you'll find tons of small, unintentional ambiguities popping out at you which you want to correct. Training yourself to look for them and to clean them up is one part of helping your text flow better. I guess that's that. I hope you got something out of that, and I ask that, if you have questions, comments, or problems regarding this or "that", you leave a note below to that effect.
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  6. Hey Funya remember what happened last time you were hyped about a future installment of a series you like after years without any news?
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  7. No, it will be artists, when they realise Ryu just wants to "draw" everything himself again.
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  8. Given I'm pretty sure I've contributed next to nowt of worth in my 18 months here, I'm frankly amazed I've gotten to 500 posts in the first place. Since joining the forums, I've read the grand total of 13 VNs (which is way more than I thought, sadly), learnt the basics of the Japanese language and apparently, not much else. Here's to the next worthless 500! / Just wanna ping a few people who have enriched my life since joining this place: @mitchhamilton - for being a beautiful human being And for pictures. Aw yee. @DarkZedge - for your tireless work in enriching lives with neko goodness. @Forgetful Frank - for making me think you were a new source of intelligent conversation to the world, and then comprehensively obliterating that misconception Also because you make me laugh on a daily basis. @Kaguya - for making the 'list of 50 translated VNs' list that I found on Google that drew me here initially, and for being a well-informed grounder of chats when things get a bit too bizarre. Also, a sincere thanks for snapping me out of my self-pitying hole around a year ago. @VirginSmasher - for discussions about technical death metal and deathcore, which is always a +1 in my book. @Kawasumi - for being one of the first people I recall having a chat with on here, and for having an incredible taste in music. @Arcadeotic - For your deadpan Finnish wit, immeasurable patience and appreciation that Tsumiki is indeed best girl, I stoop to you. @Fred the Barber - You either post something interesting or you post something that's funny, and that's good enough for me. Sorry for my constant avatar changing. @Dergonu - I had you pegged as a beautiful, pure yuri lover, and then look what happened You're glorious all the same though, and if you ever continue with your story, gimme a shout and I'll be happy to read through it! @KosakiFag - I suspect you may have actually been the very first person I properly conversed with on here, though to be honest my memory is shit. You've been a constant though, and a wonderful one at that. Also thank you for bringing Subway pr0n into my life, which will never cease to be hilarious. @HMN - for just being generally lovely. @Asonn - for just being generally salty. And lovely. @Flutterz - for being salty. And lovely. And for bringing moe into our lives. @Kiriririri - for being the moe in our lives. @madvanced - your linguistic prowess will likely never cease to amaze me. Also thank you for Nyoron, which is simply incredible. Shit, this was longer than I anticipated. If I've forgotten anybody that feels like they've been forgotten, shout at me and I'll write a nice sentence about you (Also, if anyone has any questions I'll answer them. Probably.)
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  10. It was yet another pretentious game with a lot of crap. I cannot phantom people actually like this stuff.
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  11. This kickstarter project has really remembered me of how much I've seen things change on the VN market this last 10 years. Back when I started reading VNs, there was only Jast bringing VNs into the west, they had a couple of decent games (like Yume Miru Kusuri and Kana) and a shitload of Nukige. You could rely on some high-quality VNs being fan-translated, but not that many (Sharin no Kuni, Cross Channel, FSN, that was it more or less). That was before Mangagamer opened up business, before MuvLuv was fan-translated, never mind being kickstarted. You basically had to learn Japanese to some degree to unlock the titles you wanted to read. Back then, the idea of having something like Dies Irae fan-translated would have been incredible. Like, in the sense of unbelievable. You don't know how much I love this game if you haven't tried reading it in Japanes, just how difficult it is for someone that has a crude, self-taught understanding of the language. And now we actually get the chance to have that wonderful game translated in English, but the market has become so big, that people can actually say "no, I'm disappointed by this and that" or "the PR team is really bad", and won't back it. It's amazing, and don't get me wrong, from a certain point of view, it's amazing in a good way. Seriously, most of you guys probably have no idea. Still, I would like to push as many people as possible to back the game. There's no guarantee that, if this fails, there will ever be a second attempt. Also, a failure of a big title like Dies Irae could have an impact on the Japanese companies, focusing more on kickstarting and translating "safe" slice-of-life, moe-ish titles, and less ambitious titles like this one. Don't grow complacent. A masterpiece is still a masterpiece, even when offered with shitty merchandising or marketing campaign. If you don't like the additional stuff, back the game only, it's 35$ for a great game and more than a fair deal. As for myself, will probably increase my pledge to see this happen, but I'd like to see the community react better, and we need everyone's effort.
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  12. Translation from Reddit: "Yesterday, I heard from the personal that there were a lot of Umineko fans at the comiket booth... For seeing that much people cosplaying our characters even in the middle of the winter, I would like to thank you. The development for the next game from the "when they cry" series is scheduled to start in 2017. It is expected that this game will be completely different compared to "Higurashi" and "Umineko". I wish you a happy new year." This is real. This is happening. WTC5 is happening. Oh shit. Someone hold me. It has been years. Oh shit. O H S H I T. O H. S H I T. The hype is real.
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  13. https://fuwanovel.net/reviews/2017/01/18/himawari-the-sunflower/ So this game was moderately hyped and I personally was really excited for it. I didn't exactly like it as much as a lot of other people, though. For funsies, here's a list of VNs I think are better than this legendary doujin kamige, according to my VNDB ratings: Princess Evangile Noble ☆ Works Osananajimi wa Daitouryou: My Girlfriend is the President. Maji de Watashi ni Koishinasai! S Deardrops Games I think are exactly as good as Himawari, according to my VNDB ratings: Edelweiss Duel Savior What great company Himawari keeps.
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  16. Yo, astro here, and I just read your updated patchv2. In case you don't know who I am, I'm a professional freelance translator, and a friend of Kionachi - the main scenario writer for AoKana. While I don't speak for Kionachi, I honestly find this patch to be an insult to the years of sweat and blood he put into putting this story and world setting together. Now, with my frustration out of the way, please don't take this personally because I'm just speaking about the quality of the script from an objective standpoint - I'm not here to flame you. Seeing that it's Christmas, I'll try to word this as nicely as I possibly can. Bottom line: find a new translator. Your current TL has very limited understanding of the Japanese language. The entire script is littered with errors, so it's not something you can just TLC, or have other people pick out errors and fix. As it stands, the entire thing needs to be redone from scratch because of how inaccurate it is. Sure, some fans might not care about quality as long as it's in English, but they honestly might as well be reading a fanfiction at this point because that's how bad and frequent the errors are. The readers are not going to be reading AoKana - they're going to be reading a butchered interpretation. If you love and care about the game as much as I do, please consider taking this advice to heart. And if you don't believe me, I've taken a look at the first 50 lines of your script, and then some. There were significant errors in every other line. If this is the quality I can expect in the very beginning of the game, I'm scared to see what the rest of it looks like: If the images don't load, refresh the page (or alternatively, click on them to open them in a new window).
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  18. http://atlus.com/uta/truth/index.php http://atlus.com/uta/deception/index.php For those who are interested, it is true. Atlus is localizing both of these Utawarerumono VN/games. Something for yall to look forward to, eh?
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  19. I've always had this as a minor issue but with recent changes to the website that seem to use an image proxy it's much more of a problem that embedded pictures simply never load. The more pictures there are on a page the worse it gets. The post pictures you like thread is the worst example of it. See the screenshot below for what I end up seeing instead of the embedded pictures. Refreshing sometimes brings up the lost pictures but then it ends up making other pictures disappear. I'm currently using Firefox 50.1.0 without any blocking extensions or anything like that.
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  20. Boring introduction to understand why I'm making this tutorial. (You can skip this if you want) So this tutorial is to create that so called "mechanical immersion" when you play a VN, kinda (?) Personally I read old VNs with the help of chiitrans for parsing the text, to being able to immerse myself into the story I need to read it in full-screen mode (I just can't read it otherwise) and this is not a problem when I read new novels that allow me to kinda cheat and use chiitrans even in full-screen mode but what about old VNs? With VNs that have resolutions of 640x480 or 800x600 you can't go full-screen and use chiitrans at the same time, the parser will either look really bad or it simply won't show. Now, to fix this issue I used to use a virtual machine called Oracle VM VirtualBox, that program allowed me to scale the screen at any size I wanted so I could play the VNs in "full-screen" mode and it kinda worked... but the problem is... using a virtual machine was a pain in the ass in general so I searched for an easier solution and here it is: (End of the boring introduction) What you will need: http://www.mediafire.com/file/ss3izesipa8ecca/res.rar (OnTopReplica, ResizeEnableRunner and maybe Windows on top) All the softwares are free and ad-free too but you can scan them if you want. Tutorial: 1) Download, unpack and install everything (some of them don't require any installation). 2) See if you can take a shortcut by using ResizeEnableRunner, this wont work most of the time and it will make some VNs look bad, but you can try if you want. Just resize the screen of the VN by clicking on the borders of the VN itself and while holding the left click drag it and expand it, just like you do with any other program. 3) If that method doesn't work (80% of the time) or you just don't like how it looks, then use OnTopReplica. a) Open the program and you will see this: Left click on it...trust me on this one. b) Select your VN and click in "-whole-" c) Once your VN is selected you will know because the program will duplicate the screen, now you can resize it but that's not what we want to do, we want to go full-screen mode. So go to: Resize > Full-screen. (you can also double click on the duplicated screen and it will do the same thing) d) Now this is the important part, you will need to advance the text of the VN with your keyboard but you can also use your mouse. Position the VN behind the duplicated window, then right click on the duplicated screen and click on "enable click-through", the duplicated screen will now be "transparent" so you can click through it. Here is how it looks and a comparison using the stretching mode (with ResizeEnableRunner) and using the duplicated screen. NOTE: The "resize enable runner" program uses the same method that Visual Novel Reader to stretch the visual novels. Problems you may encounter while using the software: *Some VNs will love to stay on top of the screen or they won't let you use, in my case chiitrans or the parser you normally use, for those cases use WindowsOnTop. Open it > assign a hotkey to it > and when have that issue just force the program to stay on top, this is how I solved it with some VNs, for example setsunai, or just old VNs. *Why I'm seeing black borders? It's annoying! Easy peasy Japanesey, now you can read your VNs full of runes and 象形文字 in full-screen mode for a perfect immersion. Btw, if you are wondering about the delay between the duplicated screen and the original, well there isn't any. (I'm sure there is probably some but it's imperceptible)
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  21. Hey let's blow the dust off of this subforum for a bit shall we? I noticed we haven't really updated the profile info since... Fuwa was made basically (other than that one time we added Steam to user profiles). I figured I'd go ahead and add some things users might want. List of things added so far: Twitter has now been added under Contact Methods Anilist, ANN (Anime News Network) and Kitsu (formerly known as Hummingbird) are now options for those that don't have a MAL account Transgender, Other and Attack Helicopter are now available gender options Projects has now been added under Profile Information where you can specify whatever VN projects you work (or have worked) on. This isn't for me alone though, so I decided to make a thread and ask for people's suggestions regarding what other fields might be useful to have in their profiles. Important note: These are small fields that will go either under your contact methods or your profile information section. They're meant to be short. Preferrably things like the username you have on the respective website or something along those lines. Because of this, things like Youtube channels have already been ruled out due to the URLs being too long. Keep that in mind when suggesting. Furthermore, make sure that your suggestion isn't just for you but is actually something legitimately useful for the users on the forum.
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  22. I have the same problem with Pale Moon. It seems that the only plausible solution is to ban Jun Inoue.
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  24. So I wanted to do a proper post about this and I gave up on that idea while I was writing it and then I was doing a blog and I also quit in the middle of it too, so here it is the lazy, bad and short version of both them. I wanted to give my thanks to a few people in the forum, very few, since i don't really talk a lot with many of you... actually I really dislike the idea of mentioning people in particular so screw that. So, happy new year everyone! 2016 was probably the worst year of my whole life, by far (no, not because of trump, fuck that! xD ). I'm hoping that 2017 can be at least a bit better... although 2016 did have a few good moments (I finally graduated from the university yaaay) and some funny moments too (that trump thread xD ) It really saddens me to see how many of you can't take a fucking joke anymore and you also feel the need to edit or censor them because of that, like the one that Tyr made that was full of awesome memes, references and jokes and yes even if you don't believe it he probably jokes around 80% of the time or is being sarcastic except when he is not.. which is around 99% of the time (I'm crossing your name out because i don't want to mention anyone) I didn't know that everyone was so easily triggered in this forum : ( when somebody can't take a joke and feels the need to shut the other person up because it feels aggrieved... it says a lot about how we are doing as individuals and also as a community, I noticed it not only on fuwa but on Twitter, Facebook, or any social media too, everyone seems to be at their edge all the time... come on take everything in a less serious manner! But please ignore all my rant, I don't want to start a fight I just wanted to point that out and nothing more. So yeah, happy new year! Best wishes to all of you, specially to all that people that don't like me.
    7 likes
  25. Review: solidbatman Pricing: free, regrettably Amount: way, way too much sometimes Ingredients: Salt, Quinine, Space Anime, Chili Extract, Hatred Nutritional information: not conventionally present, but stamped with unhealthy all over Additional packaging info: Made in the United Salt of America Environmental factors: Tried in multiple settings, like fuwa forums and his own discord chat. The solidbatman experience is not entirely unpleasant, but I can only recommend it to those with specialist tastes. Even then, you will spend an uncomfortable amount of time cringing whenever he does something stupid. At his best, solidbatman can be entertaining, with scintillating wit; however, most of the time he just comes off as salty and unable to handle people liking what he does not. All in all I will rate solidbatman a 7/10, polarity -3 / +2. He does not, IMHO, deserve a position in the hallmark of great people, but he's cool enough to be around that I usually don't regret it.
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  26. Please like this post if you enjoyed the title of this thread and don't forget to subscribe to my channel and click the bell butt(ry
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  29. I almost want to back it so I can make my cat crossdress as a maid. Also tfw you realize a cat custome is a better reward than most of Dies Irae's kickstarter rewards.
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  30. This is why VNs aren't popular in the west.
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  34. Hi everyone, I've been building a library of images that you are welcome to use in your projects. They are all original...all my own work. I think a lot of them could be made into cool textures for games. All I ask is to be attributed as indicated on my homepage: http://soundimage.org/ The images are on my "TXR" pages. I'm adding new ones all the time, so be sure to check back often. I sincerely hope that some of them are useful. Any and all constructive feedback is welcome and always appreciated. :-) All the best, Eric
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  36. Finally I can rate more things 1/10 and decrease my mean score even further!
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  38. Something to keep in mind is that Dating Sims regularly make a resurgence, and a small but significant proportion of the VN community came from people seeking dating sims who got hooked on slice-of-life VNs. One thing about dating sims is that they are relatively easy to make (the basic system hasn't changed since the nineties, with only minor details different between games). Another thing is that they don't require a ton of processing power, so they can easily make their way onto mobile platforms. This has made the popularity of western-made games of this type rise in recent years. One other thing to keep in mind is a fundamental difference between a true dating sim and a VN (including most otomege). Dating sims are active experiences where you create your own love experience from the options available. However, VNs are essentially a passive experience where you experience other people's romances in most cases. This is where tastes tend to split off between VN lovers and dating sim lovers... A dating sim lover will often find it frustrating to play your average slice-of-life VN, as they won't feel they are an active participant in the story. In opposition, your average VN lover will find dating sims frustrating because they are interested in the characters' perceptions, not in inserting their own into the story beyond a choice of heroine. Keep in mind that I'm speaking about 'center of the road' players on both sides, not the 'fringe' players who can enjoy both. Another issue is that otomege have one huge advantage over male-oriented VNs when appealing to young female dating sim lovers... the sexual element is rarely, if ever, blatant outside of a few scenes here and there (extremely unrealistic situations that stop short of actual H).
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  39. Hi everyone! I want to let you know that Unhack 2 is finally out: http://store.steampowered.com/app/444170 Unhack 2 turned out to be the most challenging project I have ever produced. I ran into production issues that caused delay after delay. Several of them were my fault, but I learned a lot from them and will carry these lessons forward. The game has mixed reviews so far, so we will see if it turns out to be well or poorly received. Thank you !
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  40. Before I announce the VN of the Month, I'm going to go ahead and apologize to those who wanted me to play Honoguraki... to be blunt, I don't have the energy for it. Ragnarok sucked me dry, and I need to get away from undead and demons for a while. Moreover, I hate zombies in the first place (so many reasons), so I'd be unlikely to give a pleasant review or comment anyway. Now... it is kind of startling how so many great games got packed into a single month. December 2016 was a monster month for story-focused VNs, with a relative dearth of charage/moege (with only two released). I played as much as I could, but after six games, including the monster known as Venus Blood Ragnarok, I feel drained and tired. The main reason I don't deny the existence of charage utterly (other than the occasional shining diamond I find in the piles of icarabu shit) is because even I need a break from bloodshed and darkness sometimes. There were three releases that had the potential to become VN of the Month this time around... Akiyume Kukuru Ryuukishi Bloody Saga Ou no Mimi ni wa Todokanai! Now, to be blunt, Ou no Mimi would be my first choice. Why? Because, without the art bigots interfering, it is the most solid of those three candidates by several degrees. In fact, if this were six years ago, all things equal (including art), I would without hesitation have named it VN of the Month. While AXL doesn't escape its own unique formula, there is a reason why this company is a consistent seller despite reusing character art and music constantly. However, we come to Ryuukishi, which is only a few steps behind story-wise and has the advantage of being an immensely creative story that doesn't fall back on tropes for the most part. It also has a more modern art-style that is highly-detailed, illustrating battle scenes and some of the more shocking guro scenes in loving detail. Last of all, we have Akiyume Kukuru, which didn't fail to please as the third (and possibly final) game of Sumikko's 'Seasons' series. As usual, it provides the kind of meta-science mystery combined with violent and sexual humor that the company has become infamous for. For a certain type of reader, this VN is pure crack, though if you aren't the type it is aiming for, it will be a huge miss. So what is the conclusion? In the end it came down to Ryuukishi and Ou no Mimi. I balanced Ou no Mimi's solid, well-narrated story against Ryuukishi's more innovative approach... and in the end I chose Ryuukishi Bloody Saga as VN of the Month December 2016. While AXL's works are really 'at-home' for me, I felt that Ryuukishi will probably have a larger impact on the VN community as a whole in the long run... and they were dead even on how I enjoyed them. Now... look forward to VN of the Year 2016, which I probably won't finish considering until sometime next month. Fortunately or unfortunately, 2016 was almost as good as 2014 and 2011 for VNs...
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  42. For a PR company, they are very, very bad at explaining their products to their potential customers.
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  43. I wanted to wait until the year is over before I write my list for this year, but of course I haven't had the time to actually look at the December releases and now the year is over. Luckily, there isn't much interesting for me anyway. Before we start, just let me mention some noteworthy December titles: Venus Blood Ragnarok could be a nice game, but I don't really like the Venus Blood series, and as some kind of sequel it probably won't win me over anyway. I have played the trial of Meguru Sekai de Towanaru Chikai wo and it really didn't impress me. Looked like an even cheaper version of Izumo 4. And Izumo 4 was already a letdown last year. The RPG mechanics of Izumo 4 are very simple and Meguru Sekai de seems even simpler. But that is not all, contrary to Izumo 4, this time the game also looks pretty ugly! It that the reason why Yamamoto Kazue changed her name to Yamamoto ☆ Kazue for this? Well, I probably will play it nonetheless because I don't like to judge something I haven't really played, but eh, not in the near future. That's it for December. The rest doesn't interest me or I already know it will be bad (You can't fool me Moonstone!). Did I just say I don't judge something I haven't played? Eh, whatever... But now some honorable mentions of games that actually looked interesting but I haven't had the time to read them, so they won't be in my 2016 list: Dungeons & Daimeiwaku: I've read the trial, but haven't found the time to read the actual game. I'm sure it's good but it's kind of demotivating for me to read an RPG without any gameplay, heh. Iwaihime: Ryukishi07 and horror should be exactly what I'm looking for but for some reason I have this untouched on my hdd for a year now. Maybe I miss the Ryukishi07-art, since it doesn't look as good with generic moeblobs. Trianthology: Now I have the art, but not a full Ryukishi07 game, haha. Still, I have to read this sometime soon. Kanojo * Step: This could probably be the "Best Charage" of 2016 as far as I have seen it. The humor is great, something that's really missing in pretty much every other modern charage. It's a shame that the genre charage has such a low priority for me, so I haven't really read much of this VN so far. Now I mention some games people might expect in my list of 2016's best eroge, but I actually found them to be only mediocre: Shi ni Iku Kimi, Yakata ni Mebuku Zouo: Yeah, I wasn't as excited about this as everyone else. I do not fetishize gore. I like death as an element of a thrilling story, but death in Nikuniku has no impact. There is no meaning in killing someone when they can't die. Baka Dakedo Chinchin Shaburu no Dake wa Jouzu na Chii-chan: This game has a Genre-Shift tag of 3.0 on vndb and some people claim it would be different than what you expect it to be. Spoiler: It's exactly what it looks like! WTF are the people talking about? lol Maitetsu: Borefest and not even usable as a lolige. Really only interesting for train otakus. Now let's start with the list of maybe not necessarily the best but the most impressive eroge of 2016, for me at least: Eroge of the Year: Natsu no Kusari Best game without a doubt, there is no other contender here. If I would make a Top 5 of 2017, the second place would already be many, many levels under this one. It's so good (or all the other recent games are just so bad, lol). I have already written walls of text in other threads about this game so I won't repeat myself here. I will just say that this game is exactly what I'm looking for when I read an eroge, the reason why I even started with this medium. Great characterization and the perfect use of narration, music, visuals and voices makes this one of the most compelling short stories I have read in years. Best NTR Eroge: Dearest Blue The lack of elf is really showing and I certainly can't say that any LiLiM game is really good, but at least with Dearest Blue LiLiM improved on their formula and made it its best game so far. We still have some obvious "Do you want to get NTR'd"-choices, but they are not as in-your-face as in previous titles. Some choices make you wonder what will actually happen if you go this route and that at least is an improvement. In some instances there is some believable drama and especially one route is good where you can cheer for both, the protagonist and the rival because both characters are likable. The main heroine is also well-characterized, being an independent and strong woman without going too bitchy or slutty. Still, not everything is good. Pretty much every male character except the aforementioned one is a one-dimensional evil villain. The biggest problem however is that the story is build around some kind of NTR/death-game where all the players need to outwit each other ... but in the end there are no mind games or twists happening! Heck, even I could probably win this game because every other character is so bad at this, not having a plan or making retarded moves. What a disappointment! Read this for the relationship drama, not for the death game. Best Modern Oldschool Eroge: Ryuudouji Shimon no Inbou This might be an unpopular opinion, but I really think that the writing in many of the latest Mink-games is topnotch. Really, if Mink-games weren't conceptually so limited (being only nukige), they could be really great. Why is that? Is it because Mink is such an old company that they still carry on old writing traditions which were established in the Golden Age of eroge? That at least would explain why Ryuudouji Shimon no Inbou is so good when it conceptually shouldn't be! Don't misunderstand me, Ryuudouji Shimon no Inbou is not a good slave-training eroge. There is no real SLG gameplay here, instead the only choice the player has is to visit 1 of 20 locations every day hoping that some kind of event happens there. There is no indication which area you have to visit, neither in script nor in the interface, it's completely by chance. Save-scumming and blindly gathering events at its finest, huh. But if you can look behind this (preferably with a walkthrough), you will find a game that feels like the late 90s. Mainly because this is a blatant clone of 99's Yakin Byoutou. It's pretty much "Night Shift School Girls". Aside from the setting that is now a school, we have the same kind of characters, the same storyline and the same development Yakin Byoutou had. And it's great, because that formula still works 17 years later! The ugly main character, who has just enough understanding of the human psyche to get what he wants, the pure maidens who fall into his traps, not because they are sluts but because they are believable corrupted, and the evil female mastermind who is probably even worse than the main character. It's beautiful. The nostalgia is strong with this one. Best Dark and Edgy Eroge: Tokage no Shippo Kiri I'm cheating here a bit because the game was released in November 2015. But since the fandisc was released in January last year which means the full experience was only available to us in 2016, I see it as 2016 game. There is not much to say here, what Derg not already said. Games like this prove that even low-budget publisher can make good games, if they just try. CYCLET is not Black Cyc, but it tries nonetheless to be something special and succeeds in setting itself apart from all the other low budget publisher. Maybe that is the reason we only had one CYCLET game in 2016; they emphasize on quality, not quantity. Best RPG: Dungeon of Regalias Let's not talk about the story and the characters. They are terrible, like in every Astronauts Sirius game. But damn is the gameplay addicting and actually good. Like in, really, really good. This is probably one of the best ero-dungeon crawler existing. They did everything right with this one. Hard difficulty available from start. Skills as "items" which can be equipped so you can change your build without any resetting of skill points like in other games. Monsters who all act differently thus forcing you to change your strategy and character builds and party constantly. Great game. Best SRPG: Sankai Ou no Yubiwa I'm probably the only one, but ... I actually liked 2016's Eushully game. Yeah, really. Ok, it wasn't really a good SRPG; it actually had many flaws, like being far too easy and exploitable and the routes being too similar to each other... but... I liked the concept. Having six main characters who all represent a different kind of approach to the Ero-RPG genre is really something I wish more games would do. I hate the good guy, the antihero and the maou archetype, and sadly most Eushully games have one of these three as their main character. But Sankai Ou has also three other, more interesting protagonists to choose from. For example, I always wanted the angels to win in an Eushully game, and finally I have the opportunity to do this because the obligatory fallen-angel storyline is already covered in the other routes. Nice. Biggest disappointment: Extravaganza ~Mushigurui Hen~ I was so hyped for this one. The first true Black Cyc game after 5 years of absence. Written by Banya Izumi who we could trust with the task of continuing a beloved series, right? Right? No, it's awful. This game turned out to be an abomination which is quite remarkable because Black Cyc already milked the Extravaganza series with bad sidestories back when Black Cyc was still good for the most part. And Mushigurui Hen is even worse than these cheap nukige spinoffs. At least with cheap nukige fandisc, we know we get something bad. Mushigurui Hen on the other hand could have been good. It could have been awesome. But it wasn't. So what went wrong? You have these great characters with their epic background stories, but what do they do with them? Putting them in school, because school life is, as we all now, the most important thing ever. And if a character is too old for school, just make them into rich snobs whose only problem in life is being too old (meaning being 23 years old) and lamenting about not having the time to go to the cinema with friends because work (meaning being CEO and chilling all the day in the office). And if that wasn't bad enough, they also retcon a character death because this character was very popular back then and we need him for funny slice of life scenes now, yay. The most offending thing however is how this "sequel" actually takes place after the second arc of the original Extravaganza, which means before the last third of the original game. And all the important character events in the third arc which really were the heart of the Extravaganza story apparently don't take place in this timeline. Instead, we get inferior and meaningless drama with derailed characters in Mushigurui Hen which is apparently now the canon timeline. Hurray. Biggest insult: Everything released by Akabei Soft 3 I'm not going into this now, but literally every AKB3 game this year greatly offended me, just as Silky's Plus' games did last year. Let's just say that AKB3 makes games which represent everything that's wrong with modern eroge and have nothing left of what made eroge once great. (I might write a post explaining this statement in the near future.) It saddens me how popular these games are. A dark prospect for 2017.
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  44. That's awful, so sorry to hear that.
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  45. Wow, it's almost like you can't technically say you're making porn on Kickstarter, and they didn't know how far they could push things, and FrontWing demanded that it be technically separate. Seriously, this is an incredibly stupid argument. If it was in included in Backerkit, it was part of the Kickstarter campaign. I know you hate ero, but you're being ridiculous and pedantic for basically no reason.
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  47. Poor advertising/a lack of understanding of the Western consumer mindset is a standard with Japanese companies... Unlike the Japanese, we don't jump on artbooks and figurines like a slavering otaku-shaped monster like the Japanese do, but they assume we will, lol... Edit: Incidentally, I have no intention of withdrawing my pledge... but that's because I honestly believe this VN is something that should come across the ocean.
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  48. The stretch goals are up: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1986219362/dies-irae-english-localization-project-commences/posts/1772515 Yeeesh. They're bad. 1) Vita was moved up $50,000. So count out vita fan support. 2) In its place at $200,000 is a 16 page booklet addition to the physical editions. SIXTEEN WHOLE PAGES FOR $40,000. 3) Interview with Kaziklu Bey is just gone. Guess we're never getting that. 4) The fan book collection was downgraded to a single fan book. Hope this inspires you to pledge more!!
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