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Turnip Sensei

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About Turnip Sensei

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  • Birthday March 27

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    Next to cabbage
  • Interests
    VNs, books, video games. Sakurai Hikaru
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  1. Whole Steampunk series is very artsy and poetic, and in very good way. Sakurai Hikaru, the writer behind the series, has a very unique writing style that you could describe as poetic and a bit theatrical. Definitely not for everyone, but if the style clicks these VNs can be most beautiful experiences. Plus the "Steampunk/Alt-history/Cosmic horror"-setting of the series is super interesting and intricate. Gahtkhun of the Golden Lightning is probably the best place to start. SeaBed is other worthwhile option, bit unusual and potentially really thought-provoking VN too. SeaBed ditches most of dramatic elements you would expect from a mystery, or just any story in general, and delivers a hypnotic story with dreamy, diary-like narration about coping with loss and living with your problems.
  2. I just recently read Flowers spring, summer and autumn back-to-back (now reading Winter) and I can happily say that Summer is really good. Glad to see the English version is finally coming out! Innocent Grey learned a lot making Spring and put it to good use, as Summer's just generally better in pretty much every aspect. Plus Yaegaki Erika is one amazing protagonist, hope everyone loves her as much as I do!
  3. Recommend a VN to Fuwa's Recommendation Program

    Cool! I proposed adding SeaBed and Sona-Nyl.
  4. What are you playing?

    I got really into Flowers and I'm now through Summer and Autumn. After the slight mess that was Spring, I can happily say that Summer and Autumn are huge improvements and the series itself is honestly really great. Just about everything is noticeable improved going from Spring to Summer. Spring was in the hard place of building the whole setting for the latter volumes, but Innocent Grey really learned from the experience and it shows. I'm really glad I decided to continue with series. Flowers -Le Volume sur Été- or Summer is, as fitting for the season, a warm and sunny story. Focus is on the budding relationship between Yaegaki and a new student Takasaki Chidori, and everything is built around this. Chapters are less numerous, but more substantial this time and there's some quite excellent high-points even in the middle of the story, as the main pairs relationship grows through shared experiences. And a no small part of Summer greatness must also be attributed to Yaegaki's character, which is frankly quite amazing in many ways. Not only is she a really good portrayal of a disabled person in general, but also a quite rare example of a character that is very much in terms with herself. Unlike one would expect or how normally these types of stories tend go, Yaegaki has suffered her existential crisis long before the events of the game. She knows her flaws and how she has to rely on others because of her disability. Because of this rather than just Yaegaki herself growing as a character she's more there to help others grow. A nice kind of supportive protagonist! Not to mention her lovable sassy and cat-like personality, which creates some amazing interactions with other characters. Her way of thinking also shows nicely in the mystery sections as well, since compared to the "Classical detective" of Souh, Yaegaki's approach is more of a post-modern. I would honestly consider her as one of my favourite protagonists. So yeah, for those looking forward the English release, be happy because Flowers Summer is honestly great VN! Just hoping the translation and the general quality of the release won't be as lackluster as in Spring... Flowers deserves more than that. Flowers -Le Volume sur Automne- Autumn, featuring everyone's favorite aloof senpai, Yatsushiro Yuzuriha, is in good contrast to Summer very melancholic. Yuzuriha is actually the most sentimental of the protagonist in the series so far, and her worries and uncertainties pour over to the narration creating a somber and somehow refined atmosphere. The fantastic piano soundtrack does wonders as well. Flowers being a mostly character focused series means Yuzuriha's character and development is what carries the story, and that it does really well, as Yuzuriha turned out to be even better character than I hoped. Struggling between the expectations of others and her inner-self, a good part of the game is spend in Yuzuriha's head. Acting strong to hide own weakness and playing around to escape from worries. The gap between how she behaves and what she really feels is almost painful sometimes, partly because it's so relatable. The story about Yuzuriha's complicated relationship with Nerine and their past is touching, and I really enjoyed their bittersweet tale. Next, Winter! I have high hopes for you!
  5. What are you playing?

    I read Flowers -Le Volume sur Printemps- few days ago, and it was, uhh.. a very mixed bag for me. I don't think I've ever read a VN as at times aggravating, yet still somehow enjoyable. But Flowers definitely did some things right, (even when excluding the precious treasure that is Kawashima Rino as Yuzuriha) because here I'm now, reading the sequel Flowers -Le Volume sure Été-. And this time honestly enjoying myself. Yaegaki is more to my liking as a protagonist. Souh was already pretty relatable, but Yaegaki is even more so, although in different ways. Plus, I think it's nice having a bit more active and outspoken protagonist. Girls, both new and the ones from before are still really cute. Story feels more focused too, I think, and even the "mysteries" so far have been better.
  6. What are you playing?

    I was too pretty surprised how on point the humor in Chuusotsu was. The comedic timing is really good and I like how there is even witty retorts baked in to the narration itself. The more serious/darker parts are well done too. The setting is really interesting in a fucked-up way, and through that Chuusotsu has important things to say about having dreams and "what is expected of you vs. what you personally want". Plus I've been in very similar dark places as the protagonist Arue, so many of the themes hit very close to home. I'm very curious about the continuation.
  7. Recommend something fun

    Yuru Camp △ and Flying Witch are both superb slice-of-life anime. Entertaining and funny, but most importantly peacefully pleasant, gentle and maximum comfy.
  8. Shiei no Sona-Nyl (and the rest of Steampunk-series as well) Sakurai Hikaru is pretty much the only writer I don't mind calling my favorite and the reason I bothered to properly study japanese. Her unique style resonates with me, from the slightly poetic expressions, theatrical mannerisms, to how the characters and stories are presented. Sakurai's stories are full of emotion, wonderful ideas and something profoundly beautiful, at least for me. Plus, if you go deep enough, the Steampunk-series is one the most fascinating and expansive alt-history/Steampunk/cosmic-horror settings out there. SeaBed is just the kind of curious and unusual story that entices me, refuses to leave my thoughts. Definitely not for everyone, but so much for me! Looking back, there's a big bunch of really good VNs I've read. Yet, at the same time I mostly remember just liking them back then, while the actual feelings have long gone. But there are some exceptions, like Kindred Spirits on the Roof. Just thinking about it makes me smile and feel warm and fuzzy! And that if anything is important. I don't have any good picks for fourth right now...
  9. Yes! I've been waiting for this! SeaBed and now Chuusotsu, Fruitbat Factory keeps me supplied with just my kind of quirky (doujin) VNs.
  10. Anime Boston Mangagamer Speculation and Announcements Thread

    Kindred Spirit Full Chorus was pretty much given, but that doesn't make the announcement any less exiting. Can't wait to play it again, now with more glorious voices! Linux port is also nice bonus. Steam Prison looks surprisingly interesting.
  11. The obvious would be to say that great characters, engaging story, good writing and so on makes a great visual novel. But in my case, what usually separates great from really good is something really vague and undefinable: a sense of passion and creative drive behind the VN. That the writer (& staff) had something they wanted to express from the bottom of their hearts. Particularities aren't that big of a concern to me, reading a story where I can feel the author is truly having fun or writing about what they found important is what I enjoy the most. It could always be me misunderstanding or reading too much into it, but this sense of heartfelt passion is what matters to me. Concept of what is "good" is always somewhat subjective, and I've found that setting too strict guidelines to myself about what a work needs have to be "good" or what I should to expect just leads to disappointment. I can only feel the world from my perspective, so it's better to have an open mind and seek out things that resonate with me personally. Those can be my great things. And if a VN managed to affect me enough for me to consider it great, I can at least hope the same is possible with someone else.
  12. What are you playing?

    SeaBed is purposefully written in a really passive fashion. Partly to show Sachi's mental state, but also to emphasize the themes of the whole work. There's hardly any "drama" and structure is pretty flat, because the story and the characters refuse to dramatize their situations. After all, isn't that what we all do? Downplay our problems and just keep living our daily lives? SeaBed does get more interesting towards the end (plus the later chapters are shorter too), but for the most part it's is very low-key. Not that I think that any explanation can help if SeaBed's style doesn't work with someone, but I'm really impressed by it. The passive tone and the lack of explicit emotions in the narration is really unusual and pretty brave choice. I'm not surprised it is seen as boring, but I personally find it strangely calming. It's not captivating in the usual sense, but there's a nice feeling of time just flowing peacefully. Kinda like reading an old diary. I also think it's amazing how touching the story manages to be despite being what one would traditionally consider "uneventful".
  13. Favorite protagonist?

    Elysia Wentworth and Lily the Stranger from Shiei no Sona-nyl. Two amazing female protagonists in one game! And incidentally probably my favorite protagonists as well. I'm personally very fond of Elysia's refined and melancholic, somber demeanor. I really like Mary from Sharnoth too. ...And pretty much every other Steampunk MC as well.