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  1. Like
    MayoeruHitori got a reaction from Dreamysyu in Web Novel Review: Arifureta Shokugyou de Sekai Saikyou   
    I love the Arifureta web novel too; nice to see someone talk about it on Fuwanovel. I'm not caught up on all the after stories, though.
    For those who shy away from pure novels, the Arifureta manga is also a very solid adaptation, popular on sites like MangaDex. https://mangadex.org/title/248525ed-ad1c-4ddc-a834-5d6ce66a3ad2/arifureta-shokugyou-de-sekai-saikyou Also, those who want to read this novel in English should make sure to read the official J-Novel translation, which are really good and reads so much better than the mediocre half-MTL'ed fan translations. https://j-novel.club/read/arifureta-from-commonplace-to-world-s-strongest-volume-1-part-1
    I agree that the connections Hajime has with the heroines are one of the best parts of this novel. I always try to find good harems like this, but it's hard. Campione is another great example.
    P.S. On the subject of web novels, Kumo desu ga and Yondome wa Iya na Shi Zokusei Majutsushi are two other top-tier ones with antihero protagonists, which are (relatively) lesser-known. And I assume you've heard of Re-Zero, Overlord, and Mushoku Tensei... those are three other deeply unique web novels (well, Overlord at least abandoned its web novel version) with nice prose and amazing worldbuilding.
  2. Like
    MayoeruHitori got a reaction from Zalor in Will VNs bring about a revolution in social games? A look at Heaven Burns Red and Tribe Nine.   
    Key's history is a deep topic. That review of Little Busters is on point. Even before Little Busters, Clannad's After Story route was criticized by some for being too similar to YU-NO. When I watched one HBR trailer in slow motion, I could even see which character is the first to be sacrificed by Maeda... and it's the type of character he often chooses. He's actually self-aware that his ideas aren't all fresh: the story concept for Summer Pockets came from him, but he had hesitated to put it forward because he said it felt derivative of his earlier works. Still, Key wanted to use it, and SP sold well anyway. I liked SP too; a story doesn't need to be completely original to be enjoyed, and if HBR ends up anywhere near SP's level that would still put it in a league of its own among social games. Above all, Maeda still has strengths as a comedy writer and as a character writer; Kyousuke from Little Busters and Kanade from Angel Beats in particular are timeless fan favorites.
    At the core, I guess VNs inherit the advantages and disadvantages of books. Most people just don't want to read books, unless there is something abnormally good there which they can't find elsewhere, or everyone around them is reading a particular book too, like Harry Potter (or Kanon, Tsukihime, Ever17). They prefer movie (or anime) adaptations of books. The English-based VN community never had a bubble, and so like you said, relatively speaking it's done well for itself in recent years, with DDLC even on Famitsu's cover the other day. But in contrast, the Japanese VN industry is expected to financially sustain a good number of companies that aren't just indies and localizers, and sales aren't what they used to be...
  3. Like
    MayoeruHitori reacted to Zalor in Will VNs bring about a revolution in social games? A look at Heaven Burns Red and Tribe Nine.   
    Apologies for a delayed reply, I forgot that Fuwanovel won't notify you of comments made on blogs. Jun Maeda (and KEY in general) is an interesting example to bring up because on the one hand his VNs continually seem to sell very well, on the other hand I think he's exhausted his inspiration. Personally I think it was somewhere around Little Busters! where inspiration was lost (and Solidbatman's review of it basically confirmed my opinion). Using Little Busters! as an example, it isn't so much that it's bad, so much as it feels mediocre coming off of it's older sisters like Clannad, Planatarian, Air, Kanon, etc. Or maybe after reading 3+ KEY VNs you begin to tire of their formula, at least I did. Yet Regardless, KEY looks like the only major VN company that is still profitable, and able to release big budget VNs with a crowd of fans waiting in anticipation. An enviable situation to be in, although on the other hand they have built their own prison in the sense that many of KEY's fans expect the KEY formula, which imo has stagnated them creatively. Most other companies however, are pretty much forced to follow trends and/or release Ero-centric VNs to stay above water. 
    For me what really baffles me, is why have VNs declined in popularity? There is so much power to the medium, being able to tell stories and have visuals and audio season the writing. It's a medium that magically touched me years ago, and I anticipated that as the medium got more well known, more people would fall in love with that magic. Indeed VNs are more known about than they were 10 years ago when I first got into them, yet they are still pretty niche. I thought that the popularity of DDLC and social games like FGO might draw more people into the broader VN circle, but they didn't get as many people into the medium as I hoped.  
    Regarding everything else you said, I think we see eye to eye and I'm in agreement with your views. And thanks, this exchange has been a pleasure on my part as well.  
  4. Like
    MayoeruHitori got a reaction from Zalor in Will VNs bring about a revolution in social games? A look at Heaven Burns Red and Tribe Nine.   
    Thanks! It's cool to hear that you found my posts interesting. Your views make sense, and I'm broadly aligned with them, except maybe in what I choose to emphasize.
    I respect your cynicism toward social games, and even toward these two social games. TBF, we don't have any clear info about them yet. And my views are that VNs could improve social games, rather than the other way around, so this subject isn't immediately relevant to pure VN fans. Even then, I only put the chance of "revolution" at like... 20%? I'd say it's 60% that people look back at these games a couple years from now and say "oh yeah, that was a weird and cool design decision! too bad nobody played these games and they were shut down months later" and 20% that the producers just cut out what make these 2 games unique in beta tests to try to salvage the low-attention-span player base. So the prospect of an "intensely integrated experience" I mentioned is just a far-off possibility with that first 20% chance as a precondition.
    When it comes to labors of love versus profit-oriented works, I find it hard to draw the line between them sometimes, but agree that uninspired writers produce poor works. Tribe Nine is a bit of an unknown, with the way Kodaka described their writers as having the freedom to create stories in any genre they want, yet they still take place in a very specific "extreme baseball" setting that Too Kyo came up with, so Kodaka's supervision counts for a lot... and HBR in particular feels less inspired that I'd like, but Maeda has been mostly out of inspiration for a while now anyway, and at least his humor and eloquence of prose is extremely consistent.
    I agree that the medium of VNs (particularly eroge and doujinshi, but I don't want to slight CERO-regulated works) will always be suitable for works that are idiosyncratic and push the boundaries of creative expression. Especially DLsite VNs which aren't directly subject to Sofurin's behind-the-scenes regulation. Web novels (some of the Chinese and Korean ones are excellent too) and doujin RPGs are also powerful avenues for unrestrained creative expression. But due to the way VN engines fuse audiovisual elements and literature in a scaleable way, I still consider VNs the most ideally expressive medium. I'm like you in that I'd also not want to see VNs become lucrative again, if it meant that the already shrunken market for niche/inspired works disappeared completely. (I have no words for people who unironically say they think ero "holds back" VNs; with current economic forces in the industry, it's the opposite if anything. In the first place, the VN industry has enough room for both kinds; it's not a zero-sum game.) Honestly though, I don't expect that social games having better stories will directly impact the market for that, or drain much talent from the VN industry that hasn't already been drained. I know that Kodaka is someone who always seeks new challenges for himself, and Tribe Nine is just another one of them. In the end, I'm just guessing though.
    It's not so much about bigger being better for script size, as the bigger the script size, the less likely they've constrained themselves by social game standards. Even early FGO's story, before Nasu reformed it, consisted mostly of 30-second ADV segments separated by dialogue-less battles. Later on, FGO (and other story-oriented social games) ditched this "constant battles" requirement, and had more consecutive ADV segments. That's what made early arcs of FGO expand from around 2K lines for the entire arc, to several times that. Even then, something like Babylonia is still just 7K lines for a plot that deserves much more than that and feels awkward when adapted into a 2-cour anime, so there is still a gap before it in any way resembles a VN story-wise. So yeah, when I heard that Tribe Nine's script size would be so huge before it's even launched, and in the absence of indications that they'll have multiple monthly events, I just hope that this means each event or main story arc within the game is slowed down to a literary pace that's at least comparable to Danganronpa. But the proof is in the pudding, so I'll be playing these games myself to find out.
    Again, it's fantastic to have such thoughtful feedback on this post; I absolutely appreciate it. Oh, and you didn't particularly come off as a curmudgeon to me.
  5. Like
    MayoeruHitori reacted to Zalor in Will VNs bring about a revolution in social games? A look at Heaven Burns Red and Tribe Nine.   
    I appreciate the lengthy post, as well the the other one you linked to. They were interesting reads, and more than anything it's always nice to see people that take an active interest in the future of visual novels. That said, I don't see social games as offering any kind of salvation to the limbo VNs have found themselves in. And it has little to do with the people making them, but rather what they are at their essence. They exist for only one reason, to suck away as much money from players as possible and to get you addicted. It's very much money first, art second. And while this is the general rule for all artistic mediums, the individual works of art that stand out as great, often are lead by those insane people who are motivated by the opposite, art first and money second.  
    Now this is where my point of view radically deviates from most, so I don't expect many to agree with me. What interests me about VNs, is the artistic medium itself. What can be done with it, and how it can express themes, stories, and philosophies uniquely from other mediums. In that sense, even if VNs became massively popular. If the only things we are getting are commercial titles that appeal to the lowest common denominator (like typical Hollywood movies), I really don't care for the medium to succeed. Often when an industry is relatively new and going through it's boom period, people are more willing to fund experimental works; which is where the creative and imo interesting stuff comes from. And perhaps it's my own biases of what I've seen social games as up to this point, but I have a really hard time picturing anything deep and interesting coming out of a genre that is just glorified gambling.
    One of your key arguments is that these upcoming social games will have massive scripts. That's great for people who are addicted, but that is no guarantee of quality for people with critical eyes. "Bigger is not always better", and "quality over quantity" exist as phrases for a reason. 
    Regardless, this is just my two cents. And I'm what is known as a bit of a curmudgeon. And despite my cynicism, I really meant what I said in the beginning. Above all else, it's nice to see that there are people who still care about the future of VNs. So long as there are people who still care, the medium still has life in it.   
  6. Like
    MayoeruHitori reacted to Chronopolis in The Heart of Chuuni   
    That's a fascinating way to think about it, I think you're right.
    I'm hardly well versed in Chuuni but I was also curious as to its meaning at heart.
    I think it's about greater purpose/meaning, ascending beyond the bounds of everyday thought and society, power to resist shackles and to be able to carve one's emotions upon the world.
    It differs from power fantasy in that the focus in about escaping society and having purpose, as opposed to masterfully puppeteering the real world.
  7. Like
    MayoeruHitori reacted to Clephas in The Chuuni and Chuunibyou FAQ (自称)   
    It isn't a unique phenomenon to Japan... it is the same type of thing you see in Trekkies, obsessive Star Wars fans, and others who imitate their favorite fictional characters to the point where they lose themselves in them.  Chuunibyou tends to start around that age, but it can last for years or decades, depending on whether the individual in question is 'functional' despite their 'weirdness'. 
    In Japan, it is generally portrayed as something that is outgrown by the end of middle school (which is actually usually the case in Japan, from what my friends tell me), and that is primarily because of the extreme peer pressure and sekentei obsession over there.  In the US, where kids are mostly allowed to form their own personalities to an extent at that age, it can last a lot longer and go in seriously weird directions.
    Chuuni as literature isn't so much about 'coolness' as it is about theatrics.  Extreme/exaggerated personality types, overpowered characters, larger than life individuals, incredibly detailed settings... these are all elements common to chuuni fiction.  Which is probably why bibliophiles and story-addicts tend to fall for chuuni literature in droves.  The mundane rapidly gets boring for this type of person, since they are looking for 'stories', not the reality going on around them in daily life.
    Chuuni can vary greatly, ranging from pure white knight heroism to dark-hearted monstrousness in its characters and settings.  The key point is that it somehow transcends the mundane... which means that what can be considered chuuni will inevitably vary based on what culture and environment you were brought up in (to be blunt, someone who was brought up in a slum full of daily gun battles probably won't see a gunfighter protagonist fighting criminals as transcending the mundane).
    Chuunibyou is a function of the adolescent desire to, quite simply, do the same thing... transcend the mundane.  *shrugs*  It can be a negative, but some of the most creative people out there are of the type that experiences this 'disease' routinely.
  8. Like
    MayoeruHitori reacted to Clephas in Dir Lifyna   
    It was utilized the best in Madou Koukaku, Meishoku no Reiki, Genrin 2, IMZ, and IMV... most of the others just used it to attract buyers for their gimmicky game experiments.  I really hope that IMII's remake comes out this year or the next... the original has aged so badly as to be almost unplayable. 
  9. Like
    MayoeruHitori reacted to Norleas in 2018, A Year of Possibility in Visual Novels   
    2017 it`s not a bad year, it dont have much that stand out, but each month have consistently at least 2 or 3 decent titles, unlike 2016 that had more A titles, but some horrendous months with nothing to read.
  10. Like
    MayoeruHitori reacted to Yuuko in 2018, A Year of Possibility in Visual Novels   
    yes year of doggo is the best
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