After reading Clephas’ recent blog update I decided to rip him off was inspired to do something similar. My own experience with visual novel is not as vast as his so go read his blog, his list is awesome and is way more interesting, so just give up reading this and go to his blog -__-
Every work should be judged on its own no matter who the writer is but it’s impossible, in my opinion, not to rely on those writers that really speak to us, those that know how to push our buttons and inspire us, touch us deeply, bring us to tears, and blow our minds. When you find a writer that does all that for you then you’ll probably want to read more of his works if only because nobody else does that for you.
Takumi Nakazawa – Best known for his work on the Infinity series, Nakazawa is one of the most incredible writers and story builders of our time. He writes Hard Science Fiction Mysteries and is completely crazy for plot details. Every single scene in his stories have a purpose to be there, every line can have multiple interpretations. Each story he writes explores many philosophical themes and scientific theories. His obsession with details what gives his stories so much depth. His characters is another part where he excels at as each one has a reason and an important part in the overall narrative. Nakazawa is not just a writer but a director and a producer but his plot structure and narrative mastery is in everyone of his major projects.
Uchikoshi Koutarou – Very famous among the western visual novel community and one of the very few writers recognized outside the community. Uchikoshi worked closely with Takumi Nakazawa on the Infinity series, that is where he found his passion for Science Fiction Mystery stories and what he kept writing since Never7. His ideas are incredible and just as much fascinating as Nakazawa’s ideas with a detailed narrative structure only matched by Nakazawa himself. It’s impossible to talk about either of those writers and not to compare between their individual works. Uchikoshi is an amazing writer but he doesn’t spend as much time into fleshing out his plots as much as Nakazawa does. But his stories are still amazing and highly entertaining.
Never7 Ever17 Remember11
999: Nine Hours, Nine Persons, Nine Doors
Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward
Zero Escape: Zero Time Dilemma .
Eve - New Generation -
Masada Takashi – This guy is… the only words floating in my mind is insane and epic. His got the most chuuniest chuuni style of any writer out there. Until you read him you don’t know how good his narrative mastery truly is and just how much research he puts into his stories with everything from the bible to ancient mystical rituals to all kinds of mythologies and philosophies. The guy is a freaking poet and manages to turn a chuuni battle story into the most mind blowing FEELS kind of visual novels. What even more interesting about him is that he’s not just about the chuuni, his stories are very character centric and he is a master at making the reader sympathize with his characters and gives just as much attention to them as he does to everything else in his stories. His stories are like epic poems or German operas with extravagant imagery and presentation. He is the guy that put Light on the map and his Dies Irae built a lot of fan following for the company.
Kajiri Kamui Kagura
Soushuu Senshinkan Gakuen Hachimyoujin
Soushuu Senshinkan Gakuen Bansenjin
Dies irae ~Interview with Kaziklu Bey~.
Kurashiki Tatsuya & Takahama Ryou – Also known as the Light’s non Masada chuuni team. Masada has a very unique instantly recognizable style that is both incredible and difficult to replicate. Kurashiki Tatsuya & Takahama Ryou don't try to copy Masada and instead try different a lot more diverse styles compared to Masada and every visual novel they worked on is a completely fresh and unique work by its own merits with different presentation, visual, and writing style. Their stories are epic chuuni through and through with great prose and narrative structure. Sometimes they will bring another writer as they did with Mugi Ayumu when they worked on Zero Infinity, Electro Arms, and Silverio Vendetta or Monaka Koke for Silverio Trinity. Tatsuya also did some contractual work for Clock-Up on Maggot Baits and both of them worked together on Studio e.go!’s Izumo 4. Masada and this non Masada team defined what a chuuni visual novel should be like, they are the superstars of any chuuni visual novel reader.
Vermilion -Bind of Blood-
Zero Infinity -Devil of Maxwell-
Electro Arms -Realize Digital Dimension
Silverio Trinity(coming soon).
Higashide Yuuichirou – Another one of the best chuuni writers. His style is both varied and distinctly his own. One of the most noticeable things about him is how much he loves to create very unique settings and puts a lot of time into building his worlds. The settings in his stories are as much a character as the main characters themselves, pick any of his works and you’ll be pulled into a place so alive and imaginative you will believe it actually exists. When it comes to characters Yuuichirou is a master, at least when it comes to protagonists and the main cast and his characters really shine. Besides writing cool stylish epic battle scenes Yuuichirou is also the best comedy writer in the chuuni genre and his comedy can get absolutely hilarious. Sometimes he’s so good with characters and humor that you’ll not want those so called ‘slice of life’ scenes to end once the real plot kicks in. Unfortunately he left Propeller the company where he created his most famous works and went to work for Type-Moon.
Ryuukishi07 – One of the most prolific visual novel writers of this decade. The guy is like a perpetual machine never running out of oil and never rusting. He is known mostly for Higurashi and Umineko two of the longest visual novels ever made and are well known for being some of the best mystery stories ever written. His prose style is long but never boring, slow, or full of filler. It’s quite amazing to see long works without being full of fillers but Ryuukishi07 somehow does it. His works are very diverse on the one hand and very recognizable as his own style on the other. He also did a lot of work for and with other people like Lucia’s route in Rewrite, Ookamikakushi for Konami, and Iwahime for DMM. He can write anything from horror, a style he is known for, to drama and mysteries. Currently he is working on Rewrite side stories and is writing one of the scenarios for the Kamaitachi no Yoru remake.
Higurashi no Naku Koro ni
Umineko no Naku Koro ni
Rose Guns Days
Trianthology ~Sanmenkyou no Kuni no Alice~.
Hideo Kojima – Aka the father of Metal Gear series. His Snatcher and Policenauts are a lot more like Japanese adventure games than straight out visual novels but these games are story driven and any visual novel gamer should not miss on either of those games. Kojima fills his stories with a very detailed setting, detailed and interesting characters, and a very detailed well crafted plots. This incredible detailed stories never feel like too much or too overwhelming because every single detail is explained in a clear and understandable manner and it’s a lot of fun to try out every item and every option just to see what new stuff you’ll learn about the world, characters, and plot. Both games are full of futuristic atypical detective stories and have what could only be said as the best moments in gaming history. Even back then Kojima was a master game designer and an excellent storyteller.
Takumi Shuu – The man behind the Gyakuten Saiban aka Ace Attorney series. Similar to Kojima games, these are more of the Japanese adventure genre rather than pure visual novels. Not much else can be said about the awesome Ace Attorney that hasn’t been said before. It’s got one of the most boring premises, you play as a lawyer Yeah, Sure. That sounds like fun. But Takumi Shuu took the idea and turned it on its head with of the wall over the top characters and a lot of very well crafted mystery cases to solve. In a way all the cases are episodic but Takumi is such a smart writer he always has some kind of surprise up his sleeves by changing the formula in some way and brings everything together by the end in clever unexpected ways. Most of his characters are, for lack of a better word, very annoying. But even then the stories are so interesting that even that won’t stop you from having a lot of fun with his games. His Ghost Trick is a very innovative puzzle style game and shouldn’t be missed either.
The Entire Ace Attorney series
Kodaka Kazutaka – Worked in the games industry for a long time now and was a secondary director on Clock Tower 3 Kotaka Kazutaka is more famous for a small little series which today has exploded into a huge franchise, the Danganronpa series. Once again, like the previous two writers his games are Japanese adventure games and not what the purest will call a visual novel but really who cares about these small details anyway, Danganronpa is here to tell a story and that’s what’s important. Referred as as the Psychopop genre by Kazutaka himself, who sees himself as the creator of his own genre, Danganronpa can very easily be compared to the Ace Attorney series because of the episodic style of mystery cases the characters must solve. But Danganronpa has an overarching plot and a plot that is very detailed and a cleverly crafted crowning achievement of mystery, horror, despair, dark and bright humor, and plenty of twists and turns. The closer you get to the end of each game the more your head will be spinning and twisting with your jaw dragging on the floor. His characters are really fun, interesting and very likeable, most of them at least and they go through a lot of extreme stuff. Kazutaka loves to leave gamers in complete despair.
Super Danganronpa 2
Danganronpa Another Episode
Danganronpa 3 (anime)
the next game in the series New Danganronpa V3
Fujisaki Ryuuta – The Grisaia guy. An excellent writer putting a lot of care into his characters and brings them to life. Not everything he writes is gold but with each new story he gets better and better. With a clear and easy prose and a lot of character and hilarious comedy Ryuuta is master at writing fun character exploration scenes almost perfectly avoiding the long boring nothing happens so prevalent in other visual novels. Grisaia is his most famous work and while the first game in the series had some very slow scenes that feel like they shouldn’t have been there, most of the game is a lot of fun and entertaining as well as humorous enough it never gets tiring. However he’s also known for writing in other genres like in Draculius and Hatsuru Koto Naki Mirai Yori both of which are great and highly entertaining. An interesting trivia, Grisaia is not the first work by Fujisaki Ryuuta to have an official English release, he was one of the scenario writers on Tea Society of a Witch released by Hirameki International.
Grisaia no Kajitsu
Grisaia no Meikyuu
Grisaia no Rakuen
Hatsuru Koto Naki Mirai Yor
the upcoming Grisaia: Phantom Trigger.
Hiei Murasaki – The Cyberpunk guy heading the Baldr series. But he also worked on a lot of other visual novels with very different genres. He has great with characters when needed and a big idea man when appropriate. The Baldr series is what he’s mostly known for because of the awesome ideas but he also worked on the mecha anime style and highly entertaining Dengeki Stryker visual novel. His prose is very easy to read except when he goes into info dumping in which case it’s doubtful even the Japanese readers can understand him completely. But Murasaki’s awesome and crazy entertaining stories earned a huge place in a lot of visual novel player’s hearts.
Cho Dengeki Stryker
Watanabe Ryouichi – An almost sinfully unrecognized writer. Watanabe Ryouichi is a very diverse writer adapting different style depending on the needs of the company and projects he works on, ranging from sports stories to science fiction. His prose is simple and very easy but can be highly emotionally charged full of dramatic elements. He is also a big ideas man and his ideas are BIG. Ryouichi also likes to troll his readers by disguising epic science fiction stories with marvelous ideas and wrapping it all in what, at first, appears to be a boring nukige. Nevertheless he is the one writer that needs more recognition and his works need to be translated into English ASAP.
Ao no Kanata no Four Rhythm
the upcoming Akiyume Kukuru.
Fushichou & Shimantogawa Seiryuu – Another pair of great chuuni writers. Fushichou and Seiryuu work for 3rdEye and wrote all four of their games so far. All chuuni, all have great beautiful and sleek presentation with great writing and good prose. Bloody Rondo was not their best work but with each subsequent game their stories got much better with a better focused plot and great narrative structure techniques. They are one of the best chuuni teams in the industry with a style all their own different from what Light, Propeller, or any other chuuni developers do in writing technique and presentation design. As chuuni stories go this pair’s games are full of action, packed with battles, fighting techniques and a fully developed magic system. Like every good chuuni writer Fushichou and Seiryuu also write great and lovable characters with their own dreams and motivations with personalities easy to care for. Fortunately their latest game Sorcery Jokers is officially coming in English, probably sometime next year.
Shinigami no Testament ~menuet of epistula~
Gensou no Idea ~Oratorio Phantasm Historia~
There are many more visual novel writers I wanted to talk about but I don’t have enough experience with their works yet to write about them in depth. Writers such as G.O., Sca-Ji, and some other interesting mystery, comedy, chuuni, science fiction, and drama writers. Maybe in a year or two I’ll expand the list. Thanks for reading.