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Turnip Sensei

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Turnip Sensei last won the day on December 7 2018

Turnip Sensei had the most liked content!

About Turnip Sensei

  • Birthday March 27

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    VNs, books, video games. Sakurai Hikaru
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  1. Gahkthun of the Golden Lightning and SeaBed are some of my favourites.
  2. I started studying Japanese mostly for playing untranslated JRPGs (and killing time in high school), plus I generally liked Japanese media. I only found about VNs later. I think I tried after a year which went pretty awfully. I had gone through a language textbook + some Kanji by that point. The first VN I actually feel I got something out was somewhere after two years. Hard, and really slow. But I've always been really good at putting unnecessary amount of effort in the things I happen like in the moment, so I it didn't really feel as "hard" or exhausting as it probably should have. Sona-Nyl was definitely not a good starting VN, but it helped me to love the language even more, and find my favorite writer. None. I used at the start, but I learned pretty fast that it really hampers your actually ability to actually read and recognise Kanji, and kinda makes you dependent some kind of assistance even outside VNs. What actually taught me to read Japanese properly were Japanese books. Real physical books. It's much harder to use any assisting tools with them, so that forced me to actually learn how to read properly, use context, etc. It was even more agonisingly slow at first, but now I'm pretty confident in my ability to read general Japanese fiction. In fact, they kind of took over and I've been more or less been reading books over VNs for the last few years or so.
  3. Maybe I should have stressed the Slice of Life elements of SeaBed more when I recommended it... For me SeaBed is very special because how mundane and noncommittal it is. Slice of Life to it's logical extreme. It's sometimes boring and nothing happens, because life is like that. There's lots of random flashbacks to old vacations and other events, because remembering fun times of past helps to forget the what ails you at the moment. Many of the conversations are pointless, because that's what conversations usually are and people still like to talk to each other. And like I've said before, there is hardly any explicit drama, because no-one wants to make a huge show of themselves. It's easier to suffer inside, downplay own problems, smile and assure to people around you that you are fine. Isn't that what most people do in their lives? But I can understand that for many people this might feel like a betrayal, or why they would find it hopelessly uninteresting. Even the narration is passive, dry, and lacks emotion, and while that can be attributed to Sachiko's mental state, it doesn't make it very exiting. SeaBed challenges many of the traditional rules storytelling and writing, so it's no wonder that everyone doesn't like. But criticising it for not fitting with your expectations or usual norms, is kind of besides the point. SeaBed wants portray the lives of the characters in all their mundaneness (what else would life be?), and I think it does that effectively and well, even if it's not what is normally expected. Not that this is going to make the story any less boring for someone who already finds it so, but I think it is important to understand. I feel it's really encouraging to have a touching story about loss and living with your problems to be so mundane. Why does every story have to be exciting? Are you not allowed to grieve without being dramatic about it? Even something like character development is questioned. No-one is going to stay exactly the same, but the changes are often subtle, ambiguous. Traumatic event doesn't mean you have to change as person. It's okay to be you. "Mystery being not the point", is maybe too strongly worded, but SeaBed isn't interested in taking delight in plot-twist or grand conclusions, like mysteries usually are. For the most the characters aren't even really interested in solving or chasing it either. The mystery is more like a basic framework for the story to function. There's still interesting revelations, subtle hints and foreshadowing if look closely enough (I'm pretty sure I missed some), but on a grand scale of things the mystery is not what matters. But that doesn't mean the story of Sachiko's silent anguish, Takako struggling with losing her memories, and Narasaki's tragic burden is less meaningful. On the contrary, I think SeaBed is effective and important because of it's life-likeness, for better or worse. Anyways, that's just how I feel. If you have questions about unanswered mysteries, I can try to help.
  4. In most cases the main point of Yuri is to portray a relationship between girls (and it doesn't even have to be strictly romantic or sexual), so having a traditionally really involved plot is not that essential, and would sometimes even be a detriment. Works with heavier focus on plot do exist to some extent, but are definitely rarer and even more so if only looking at (translated) VNs. Plus like any genre Yuri has it own tropes, customs and aesthetics, and SoL-like low-key and mundane character interactions is definitely one of them. I personally believe that this is one of the best ways to actually develop/present characters, but each to their own. Subtle ambiguity in the relationships is also one of the charming characteristic of Yuri, so if you are looking for strong conclusions Yuri might not be for you. SeaBed doesn't have explicit "drama" because all of the characters refuse to needlessly dramatise their situations. Throwing a fit, wallowing in sadness or confronting someone wouldn't help anything. That doesn't mean there isn't any drama, the character obviously grieve and feel lost inside, it's just not presented as explicitly as you would normally expect. SeaBed is purposefully very passive and low-key. Same with the mystery. There are definitely answers, but once again they are not just thrown in the face of the reader, and solving the mystery isn't really the point of the story.
  5. Acquired some more Japanese books! Titles, some explanations & better pictures:
  6. Congrats! I appreciate the EVN posts. It's important that EVNs get fair representation as well. Also anyone who likes Yuri and understands good Slice-of-Life is a good person in my book!
  7. I would recommend: Kindred Spirits on the Roof Flowers-series (first two volumes, Spring & Summer are translated) SeaBed Not only are they great Yuri, but pretty fantastic VNs overall as well. Also do note that the full-voice version of Kindred Spirits should be coming out soon, so you might want to wait for that.
  8. I just finished the first episode of Omega no Shikai, a mind-fuck, cryptic-as-hell kind of psychological horror VN. I've been meaning to read this VN for the longest time, and I even started it at one point, but this screen made me give up back then. Our main character goes back to countryside where he used to live, and weird things start to happen. There's ancient family tradition, murders, cats, maybe witches(?), every other chapter is cryptic monologue or something, something big is going in the background, and it's weird and pretty cool. Not very spooky so far, but there's been some pretty unsettling scenes here and there. But on the other hand the mystery elements are super intriguing. The cryptic information is laid so thick that sometimes you have no clue what's going, how is even talking, or what about, but little by little you start to understand(maybe?) small things and it feels super satisfying. And I've just barely scratched surface! I can't wait when actual revelations start to happen! It's fun to read something so unrestrained, a mystery so cryptic it probably wouldn't ever happen anywhere else, except in obscure doujin like this. And aside from the weirdness, it actually pretty good in other areas too. The cast has been fantastic so far, all the characters are interesting and bit weird, including the main character. And partly because everyone is so quirky the humour and character interactions are so good. The weird tangents and silliness give much needed break from the sometimes mind-bending interludes, and in turn enhance the effectiveness of actually unsettling parts because the gap is so noticeable. It's also nicely atmospheric and find the art-style pretty endearing despite some the rough qualities. Definitely not for everyone, but if you want to read something different and weird, Omega no Shikai is pretty cool. Oh, but everyone should at least watch the opening. It's really atmospheric and fitting for the season, I feel.
  9. Steins;Gate felt pretty different rereading it. Not as amazing as when first read it, but I still really enjoyed it nonetheless. The plot twists and shocking moments didn't felt as impactful, of course, but some of the more emotional scenes still felt really effective, having better understanding of character motivations and such. I also came to appreciate the first half of Steins;Gate more than before. People often complain it's boring and pointless, but I feel like it's really on point with humor and how it characterises everyone, something which went unnoticed and was overshadowed by the rest of the story the first time through. Conversely the latter half, especially the chapters focusing on the side-characters, felt almost pointless at times reading them again.
  10. I'd actually like to read everything I happened to really enjoy twice, if I had enough time. The second time I tend to focus on and appreciate different aspects of the story better, like atmosphere and thematic elements, since the bit overwhelming desire to see what happens next in the plot is gone. Plus reading a story I already know I like is good stress-free and guaranteed enjoyment, something which is very important at times. VNs I've read twice: Kara no Shoujo 2, Gahkthun of the Golden Lightning (actually thrice), Steins;Gate, Fate/stay night (Fate-route), SeaBed, Va-11 HALL-A.
  11. Took way too long (I blame the ridiculously hot summer), but I finally finished Flowers Winter. It didn't quite reach the heights that Summer & Autumn did, but I'm both pretty happy how everything tied together (even thought the mysteries weren't never the strong point) and bit sad that it's now over. It wasn't the 4 years it was for some fans, but I grew pretty fond of the series. Flowers nicely filled the craving for good slice-of-life that isn't at all satisfied by moe, but also positively surprised with it's character depth. I'm still blown away by Yuzuriha's and Erika's characterisation. Plus with the unabashed love for culture, be it novels, movies, plays, fairy tales... Flowers is such a warm and positive series. Other Flowers fans might also appreciate that I just recently picked up the first volume of Flowers novelization (plus another cute yuri novel), so I guess I'm not saying goodbyes to series quite yet. I wonder what should I read next?
  12. 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.
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