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Dergonu

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  1. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Fiddle for a blog entry, Fuwa Battle Royale - Week 1 -   
    Fuwanovel Battle Royale - Volume 2 -
    Chapter 1: The Beginning
     
    <??> Watched the screen in front of <him/her?> intently. Everything was ready. The time had finally come. All that planning, all that preparation. It had all been for this moment.
    “All the pieces are in place. Well then, let’s start the game, shall we?”
    <??> Pressed the button before <him/her?> with a wicked smile.
    “Hear me, members of Fuwanovel. You are here for a single purpose; to entertain me! Those who have their name announced over these broadcasts shall enter the arena, and fight to the death! Anyone and anything you see out in the arenas will be an enemy, so be careful… And ruthless. As far as the rules go… There are none, heh.
    Good luck.”
     
    Day 1:
    Members in this chapter:

    “The game has begun. Good luck.”
    “‘Alright, time to hunt.” Ranzo jumped down from the platform he was standing on, numbered ‘11’. He had woken up inside an unfamiliar room just moments before, where he had found his suit and weapons. After a short, confusing briefing from the person in charge, Ranzo’s <cell?> had opened, and he could walk out. What greeted him was a massive forest, full of large trees towering high above him. The large trees blocked out almost all the sunlight, making it hard for Ranzo to see where he was going. But, it was either straight ahead, or back to the cell, so Ranzo chose to keep walking.
    The “briefing” had been simple. “You are stuck here. You are to fight anything and anyone you come across. If you are the last alive after the game is over, you win. If you die, you lose.”
    “Gee, really? If I die, I lose? That’s a shocker.” Ranzo spun his scythe around his body with precision while he walked, clearly used to handling the weapon. A sabre hung from his waist in a makeshift sheathe, crafted from his belt.
    After having advanced through the forest for a good ten minutes, Ranzo reached a suspicious looking cave, marked with a number— “7”.
    “Hm, another contender?” Ranzo whispered, and gripped the handle of his scythe firmly while he scanned his surroundings. If his hunch was right, the numbers represented contenders in the “game”. He was 11, and “7” was a different Fuwanovel user, also entered in the game.
    Crack.
    Ranzo spun around instinctively at the sound of a branch breaking behind him, and in the same motion, he threw his scythe forwards. The sound of metal colliding with metal made Ranzo flinch for a brief second, and he lost sight of the person who had knocked his scythe out of the air.
    “Tch.” Ranzo gripped his sabre and chased the mystery person, like a wolf rushing towards a sheep. He had no plan. The only thing going through his head was: kill it. Whoever or whatever it was; kill it.
     
    Meanwhile
    SeniorBlitz ran as fast as he could through the forest, like he had the grim reaper himself on his heels. That was in fact what Senior had thought for a second when he saw the scythe fly towards him just moments before. Senior was not well versed in any kind of combat. He had, in fact, never been in a fight in his entire life. What he did have, however, was a special ability. The ability to know what to do, where to go. He couldn’t explain it well, but there was something guiding him at all times. If he was about to trip and fall, something in his mind would tell him to stop. If he ever got lost, something would guide him back home, even if he had no idea where he was. It was thanks to that power, that guide, that Senior was still alive. He had seen the scythe coming seconds before it was thrown, and had used the sword that was given to him at the start of the game to block its path. He had sadly dropped the sword in his escape, and was therefore now unarmed.
    “Stop running my friend, I wish you no harm!”
    His attacker was shouting at Senior from behind. Thanks to his ability, Senior knew that he would be able to shake off his tail if he just kept following the path laid out in his mind. He did not look back, he did not falter.
    “Tch, you little… How long do you plan on running for?”
    “I’ll catch you eventually you little slime! Just you wait, I’m coming for you!”
    The voice of his attacker grew distant, as Senior just kept on running through the forest. Before long, he had completely shaken off the madman running after him.
    “Haah, haah, haah…” Senior finally had the opportunity to stop for a breath. With his hands on his knees, he spent a few minutes calming down. He knew that the man behind him would not be able to find him for at least another ten minutes, thanks to his ability.
    “Alright, time to find a better place to hide.”
    Senior got back up, and started walking through the dense forest, looking for shelter. He figured it would be smart to find someplace safe to gather his thoughts. It would be best to do so before nightfall, so he started walking faster, following the path lit up in his mind.
    “Just about another hundred meters this way, and— Huh?!”
    “GRAARGH!”
    Senior was so focused on following the path to “safety”, he paid no mind to his surroundings, and did not notice the strange creature approaching from his left. Whatever it was, its massive jaw closed around Senior’s chest, and he was lifted up into the air and shook brutally back and forth, the sharp teeth of the beast ripping his flesh apart with each movement.
    “GYAAAAH!”
    Senior let out a primal scream, and tried to punch the creature with his free arm, but it was no use.
    The beast’s iron jaw remained closed, and the life soon drained from Senior’s body, as most of his organs and blood poured down onto the grass below him. His entire torso had been ripped to bits, and what was left of him was soon devoured by the beast, leaving only pools of blood and a few chunks of flesh behind.
     
     
    About an hour later, Ranzo arrived at the scene of Senior’s death. Taking one look at the pool of blood and gore, Ranzo clicked his tongue, and turned back.
    “Guess someone got to him before me. Oh well, time to look for the next guy, I guess.”
    Whistling a song to himself, Ranzo spun his scythe around, matching the song’s rhythm as he walked back into the depths of the forest, looking for new prey to hunt.
     

    Elsewhere:
    Arcadeotic sat at the end of a cliff, looking at the waterfall below him with a emotionless expression, balancing a katana on his feet. A single sudden motion would surely send the sword tumbling down the fifty meter long drop.
    Arcadeotic was wearing a blue yukata, stained red with the blood of a pack of wild boars he had killed an hour ago. After cooking some of their meat on a fire, he had eaten some for himself, then tossed the rest down into the abyss. He had no intentions of sharing the meat with anyone else, nor did he want the smell of the meat to attract possible predators. He had extinguished the fire as soon as he was done cooking the meat, but it might still have notified someone of his location. Nevertheless, Arcadeotic sat completely still on the cliff, staring out into nothingness.
    Sure enough, after another few minutes, the sound of footsteps could be heard behind him.
    Still, Arcadeotic remaind motionless, not facing his attacker.
     
    Sneaking up behind him was Thatcomicguy, clutching his spear with his right hand. In his free arm was a wooden shield, covered in thick leather. Other than his weapons, Thatcomicguy was completely naked, though his body was covered in blue war paint.
    Thatcomicguy snuck up to Arcadeotic until he was a mere two meters away, then stabbed at Arcadeotic’s back with his spear. Right before the spear hit Arcadeotic’s back, he jumped straight up into the air, grabbed his katana, and in the same motion as he drew it from its sheath, he cut at Thatcomicguy’s chest.
    Thatcomicguy barely had time to block the slice with his shield, and was forced back a few steps from the impact.
    Meanwhile, Arcadeotic landed gracefully on the edge of the cliff, and quickly moved in for another attack, cutting at Thatcomicguy’s left foot.
    Arcadeotic closed the distance between them in a second, and mercilessly sliced a deep cut in Thatcomicguy’s calf.
    “Ugh…”
    Thatcomicguy groaned in pain, and pushed his shield forward defensively, hitting Arcadeotic in the chest.
    Arcadeotic fell backwards, but quickly regained his balance.
    For the first time in the fight, Arcadeotic glanced at his opponent, and chuckled.
    “You look ridiculous.”
    Thatcomicguy paid him no mind, and tried to focus on his plan of attack. He should have the upper hand, even with the cut on his leg, as he had the longest reach thanks to his spear, and a shield to block the katana’s slashes. The leather on his shield had taken a hit already, and was already starting to come apart. It probably wouldn’t last too long.
    Seemingly having come up with a plan, Thatcomicguy stepped forward. Although the pain in his leg was nothing to joke about, he did not let it stop him.
    “Yeah, well, we’ll see who gets the last laugh.”
    Keeping just enough distance between himself and his opponent, so that the katana would not be able to reach him, Thatcomicguy thrust his spear towards Arcadeotic. Arcadeotic easily deflected the thrust, but as he was about to counterattack, Thatcomicguy swiftly changed his grip, turning his spear downwards towards Arcadeotic leg, and dug the tip of his spear into Arcadeotic’s knee. Arcadeotic winced in response, but didn’t let the pain stop him from fighting. Not wasting any time, Arcadeotic slashed two times, but both attacks were blocked by Thatcomicguy’s pesky shield.
    “Tch.”
    It became impossible for Arcadeotic to stand on his wounded leg, which meant he would be at an even bigger disadvantage than before. His strongest point was his speed, but without his full mobility, he would be unable to close the distance between himself and his opponent fast enough to stop the spear from keeping him at bay.
    “... An eye for an eye, huh?”
    Arcadeotic said to himself, as he tried to come up with a way out of the dire situation. He had cut his opponent’s leg, but in return, his own knee had been damaged. Both of them were less mobile, but it seemed like his own injury was a bit more serious.
    “Well, what can you do.”
    Arcadeotic walked forward with awkward steps, his wounded leg mostly just being dragged along the ground.
    “I’ll end this with one strike.”
    The bold statement from Arcadeotic made Thatcomicguy snicker.
    “Oh, is that so? Well by all means, come at me.”
    Thatcomicguy spat back, readied his spear, and covered his chest with his shield. There was no way Arcadeotic would be able to attack his opponent’s torso. And yet…
    “Hmph!”
    With a grunt, Arcadeotic jumped forward, and with all his might, he slammed the flat side of his sword into the wooden shield. The impact made Thatcomicguy stagger, and he let out a painful groan as he put all his weight on his wounded leg.
    Still in the air, Arcadeotic slashed downwards. His sword moved along the rough leather covering the wooden shield, until it reached Thatcomicguy’s exposed shoulder. The sharp blade slashed open the naked shoulder, making Thatcomicguy drop his shield. Unfortunately for Arcadeotic, he was unable to brace himself properly after the attack, and he crashed into the ground, dropping his katana. The air was knocked out of him as his chest collided with the rough ground. But, he wasn’t done there. Although the world around him was spinning, he used his healthy leg to kick violently at Thatcomicguy’s wounded foot.
    “Guaaah!”
    Thatcomicguy screamed, as he too fell to the ground, paralyzed by pain.
    Crawling towards his katana, Arcadeotic was ready to deliver the finishing blow. He gripped the hilt of his weapon, and turned towards his fallen enemy. Although every part of his body hurt, Arcadeotic somehow managed to stand, and moved towards his prey with clumsy movements.
    “Hya!”
    As he reached his target, he brought his katana above his shoulder, and slashed mercilessly at Thatcomicguy's neck.
    Clink.
    The sound of something breaking made Arcadeotic look at his sword in confusion. The katana’s blade had snapped in half, most likely a result from his fall. And since the blade had broken mid swing, he had not actually hit his opponent.
    “Well, shi—”
    Before Arcadeotic could finish his sentence, the tip of a spear dug into his throat, making a spray of fresh blood shoot out from the wound, dying Thatcomicguy’s skin in red.
    As Arcadeotic’s dead body hit the floor, Thatcomicguy dropped his spear, as the strength began to leave his body.
    “You… Tough bastard…”
    With those words, he passed out.
     

     
    Meanwhile, at the outskirts of the forest:

     
    “How’s this place?”
    “Hmm, looks good. We’ll camp here for now. Someone start a fire.”
    “Ugh, do you think there are any more of those things out there? I’m not sure I’m comfortable sleeping here, out in the open…”
    “Don’t worry, we’ll take shifts keeping guard. #28, #6, you two take the first shift.”
    “Huh? Who died and made you the boss?”
    Four figures, covered in mud and blood, were talking under the cover of a giant tree, just half a kilometer from the edge of the forest. The four of them were members of Fuwanovel, and contenders in the death game that had started previously that day. But, neither of them wanted to kill their fellow members, and as a result, they had formed a team.
    Shortly after they teamed up, however, they were attacked by giant monsters that seemed to live in the depths of the forest. Hungry and tired, the four of them had finally reached a seemingly peaceful area, and were setting up camp with what little resources they had.
    The four members were Sayaka (#28), Norleas (#9), Shikomizue (#13) and Kiriririri (#6).
    Shikomizue was the natural leader type, and had taken the lead of the group as a result, something that did not sit well with Sayaka.
    “Why do I have to listen to your orders, huh? I’m tired too! I want to sleep just as much as the next guy!”
    “Look, I don’t mean to be rude here, but in terms of actual combat abilities, me and #9 are the strongest. We need our rest, so that we can protect this group when the time comes. You and #6 are… Well you know.”
    Shikomizue gestured towards Kiriririri, a small girl with silver hair, who was poking the ground with a wooden stick, paying no mind to the conversation that was happening around her. So far, she had not participated in the fighting at all.
    “Okay, I’ll give you her, but we’re not that crazy! Master and I helped you in the fight against those… Those things, didn’t we?!”
    Sayaka pointed in the direction they had come from, where the group had fought against numerous strange beasts.
    Shikomizue scratched his head awkwardly in response. He did not want the group to start fighting among each other, as that would just make things worse. He wanted to figure out what was going on, and how to get out of it. In order to do that, he needed to get as many people as possible to form a team. If no one killed each other, the “game” or whatever it was, had to come to a stop. That was the conclusion he had reached.
    “Fine, I’ll take the first shift, along with… Her.”
    Shikomizue looked towards Kiriririri, who had just finished drawing a strange symbol in the grass.
    “Alright then, let’s get that fire going and—”
    “Get down, something is coming.”
    Norleas reached behind his back and fished out the two daggers he was storing in his jacket, then crouched down, signaling for the others to do the same.
    The group gathered together, and those who had them drew their weapons.
    “What did you see?”
    Shikomizue did not have to wait for a response, as a large bear, covered in metal plating, walked past them. It was looking around, like it was searching for the group. It looked… Off. It looked intelligent, just like the other beasts they had fought that day.
    “Something is definitely not right with these things. They started attacking us right after we formed a team. Almost like… Someone doesn’t want us to team up.”
    Shikomizue thought to himself, as he recalled the days events. Actually, every time they had been away for combat for a certain period of time, something would come and attack them.
    Almost like something, or someone, were controlling them. If that was the case, then...
    “Master, behind you!”
    Sayaka shouted to himself, and jumped forward. In the next second, a large paw covered in metal slammed down on the very spot Sayaka had been standing.
    Reaching into his maid uniform, Sayaka fished out a strange statue, in the shape of an anime figure.
    “They know we’re here master, so we might as well make some noise.”
    Turning the head of the statue around 180 degrees, Sayaka threw it behind the tree, where the second bear had attacked from.
    “Everyone, if you don’t want to go boom, I suggest you run!”
    Moments later, the figure exploded, turning the ground beneath it to ash, blowing the bear to bits in the process.
    The other bear was alerted to their presence, and jumped at Norleas, who slashed at its snout with his daggers before it had time to react. The beast roared in pain, and slammed its massive paw towards Norleas, who elegantly jumped out of the paws path, and went in for another attack.
    While the plate armor proved to be an obstacle, Norleas still managed to bring the massive beast down in a matter of seconds, as a flurry of dagger cuts tore into its hide like it was butter, always finding the unprotected parts of the bears body.

    Meanwhile, Shikomizue was fending of two wolves with his wakizashi katanas, holding back one wolf with each blade, as he pressed them against the wolves sharp fangs.
    “Where is #6? Someone cover her.”
    “Yes, yes, Master and I got her, don’t worry.”
    Throwing explosive statues at everything that moved inside the forest, Sayaka jumped around Kiriririri, who was sitting on the ground, watching the fighting happen around her with an indifferent expression.
    “Ohh, we’re gonna make master so proud, yes we are, tralala.”
    Sayaka sang as he looked up at the sky, throwing statues now seemingly at random. A few landed close to Norleas, but he simply moved out of their path with incredible speed each time, still slashing and stabbing any beast that came in his way with his daggers.
     
    The group fended off countless beasts, until finally, only one remained. It was a massive tiger, also covered in metal plating like the bears from before. The beast’s eyes were glowing in a strange blue light, and it moved faster than any other creature they had fought so far.
    Sayaka had tried throwing several statues at it, but it always got out of the blast zone before it was damaged.
    Norleas was unable to get close to the beast as well, as it was simply too fast.
    Shikomizue knew they were out of options.
    “Tch… Is this really how it ends?”
    He clicked his tongue, and started to walk towards the beast while he shook his head.
    “Am I really doing this?”
    After glancing over his shoulder, taking another look at his three teammates, Shikomizue nodded, and closed his eyes.
    “Listen up. I know what’s going on. These things are being controlled by someone. As long as we’re in a group, we’ll be sitting ducks. They are either being controlled by whoever started this fucked up game... Someone who wants us to keep fighting, or it’s another contender, in which case we should split up to try and find the bastard.
    So...  Guys, split up. Run. For now, just get as far away from each other as possible.”
    “GRAAWRH!”
    Like it understood what Shikomizue was saying, the tiger roared, and charged at the group. It was not happy.
    “Yes come on, you stupid cat.”
    Shikomizue charged as well, running straight ahead, towards the beast’s fangs.
    Then…
    “GUAAH!”
    Shikomizue screamed in pain, as the tiger bit him, its large fangs digging into his left side.
    “I’ll keep this thing at bay… You guys… Run away… Now!”
    Lifting up his free arm, Shikomizue gripped his katana firmly, and slashed at the tiger’s front legs, which were not covered by armor. That should slow it down. The thing was, it would have been impossible to target its legs without making it stop first. And, the only way to do that was to make it stop moving, for instance, by letting it bite one of them. Shikomizue had realized this a while ago, as he watched his comrades fail to hit the beast, and he had given his own life so that the other three could live.
    “You guys better figure out what the fuck is going on here, and stop this ‘game’, alright?”
    Shikomizue looked over his shoulder, watching as his allies ran into different directions. No beasts chased them.
    Pleased that he his plan had worked, Shikomizue fished out a cigarette from pocket, and moved it to his mouth, his hand shaking. He didn’t have anything to light it with, but he still put it in his mouth, and took a deep breath, closing his eyes.
    That was his last breath.
         
     
    Norleas walked through the forest in silence. His daggers were still dripping with blood from the countless monsters he had killed. Still, he had not even broken a sweat. Killing was his job, after all. It was a breath of fresh air for him to kill beasts instead of people.
    It was strange. The person whose job was to take people’s lives had chosen to join an alliance to avoid killing others.
    It was different this time, after all. The people in question were his friends. His fellow Fuwanovel users. There was no way he could kill them.
    Sensing something moving behind him, Norleas gripped his dagger, and prepared for battle. But…
    “Oh, it’s just you.”
    He lowered his weapons. Behind him stood the strange girl from before, Kiriririri.
    “What, didn’t you hear what the boss said? We’re supposed to split up. What, are you scared in the dark by yourself?”
    Kiriririri didn't’ say anything. She simply lifted her arm, pointing into the darkness behind Norleas.
    “What? What is… It…”
    Norleas turned around to look at what she was pointing at, and suddenly felt a sharp pain in his abdomen. Looking down at his own stomach, he saw a silvery blade sticking out from his chest, covered in fresh blood.
    “Wh-What…”
    “Hehe.”
    The laughter of a little girl was the last thing he heard, as his lifeless body fell to the floor.
    Kiriririri pulled the sword out of Norleas’ corpse, and it soon turned into light particles, vanishing into thin air.
    Kiriririri then simply kept walking through the forest with an emotionless expression.

     
     
     
    Kiriririri: Status = Alive
    Sayaka: Status = Alive



     
    Wildcards This Week?
    None
     
    Dead This Week:
    Still Alive:
     
  2. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from URV for a blog entry, Fuwa Battle Royale - Week 1 -   
    Fuwanovel Battle Royale - Volume 2 -
    Chapter 1: The Beginning
     
    <??> Watched the screen in front of <him/her?> intently. Everything was ready. The time had finally come. All that planning, all that preparation. It had all been for this moment.
    “All the pieces are in place. Well then, let’s start the game, shall we?”
    <??> Pressed the button before <him/her?> with a wicked smile.
    “Hear me, members of Fuwanovel. You are here for a single purpose; to entertain me! Those who have their name announced over these broadcasts shall enter the arena, and fight to the death! Anyone and anything you see out in the arenas will be an enemy, so be careful… And ruthless. As far as the rules go… There are none, heh.
    Good luck.”
     
    Day 1:
    Members in this chapter:

    “The game has begun. Good luck.”
    “‘Alright, time to hunt.” Ranzo jumped down from the platform he was standing on, numbered ‘11’. He had woken up inside an unfamiliar room just moments before, where he had found his suit and weapons. After a short, confusing briefing from the person in charge, Ranzo’s <cell?> had opened, and he could walk out. What greeted him was a massive forest, full of large trees towering high above him. The large trees blocked out almost all the sunlight, making it hard for Ranzo to see where he was going. But, it was either straight ahead, or back to the cell, so Ranzo chose to keep walking.
    The “briefing” had been simple. “You are stuck here. You are to fight anything and anyone you come across. If you are the last alive after the game is over, you win. If you die, you lose.”
    “Gee, really? If I die, I lose? That’s a shocker.” Ranzo spun his scythe around his body with precision while he walked, clearly used to handling the weapon. A sabre hung from his waist in a makeshift sheathe, crafted from his belt.
    After having advanced through the forest for a good ten minutes, Ranzo reached a suspicious looking cave, marked with a number— “7”.
    “Hm, another contender?” Ranzo whispered, and gripped the handle of his scythe firmly while he scanned his surroundings. If his hunch was right, the numbers represented contenders in the “game”. He was 11, and “7” was a different Fuwanovel user, also entered in the game.
    Crack.
    Ranzo spun around instinctively at the sound of a branch breaking behind him, and in the same motion, he threw his scythe forwards. The sound of metal colliding with metal made Ranzo flinch for a brief second, and he lost sight of the person who had knocked his scythe out of the air.
    “Tch.” Ranzo gripped his sabre and chased the mystery person, like a wolf rushing towards a sheep. He had no plan. The only thing going through his head was: kill it. Whoever or whatever it was; kill it.
     
    Meanwhile
    SeniorBlitz ran as fast as he could through the forest, like he had the grim reaper himself on his heels. That was in fact what Senior had thought for a second when he saw the scythe fly towards him just moments before. Senior was not well versed in any kind of combat. He had, in fact, never been in a fight in his entire life. What he did have, however, was a special ability. The ability to know what to do, where to go. He couldn’t explain it well, but there was something guiding him at all times. If he was about to trip and fall, something in his mind would tell him to stop. If he ever got lost, something would guide him back home, even if he had no idea where he was. It was thanks to that power, that guide, that Senior was still alive. He had seen the scythe coming seconds before it was thrown, and had used the sword that was given to him at the start of the game to block its path. He had sadly dropped the sword in his escape, and was therefore now unarmed.
    “Stop running my friend, I wish you no harm!”
    His attacker was shouting at Senior from behind. Thanks to his ability, Senior knew that he would be able to shake off his tail if he just kept following the path laid out in his mind. He did not look back, he did not falter.
    “Tch, you little… How long do you plan on running for?”
    “I’ll catch you eventually you little slime! Just you wait, I’m coming for you!”
    The voice of his attacker grew distant, as Senior just kept on running through the forest. Before long, he had completely shaken off the madman running after him.
    “Haah, haah, haah…” Senior finally had the opportunity to stop for a breath. With his hands on his knees, he spent a few minutes calming down. He knew that the man behind him would not be able to find him for at least another ten minutes, thanks to his ability.
    “Alright, time to find a better place to hide.”
    Senior got back up, and started walking through the dense forest, looking for shelter. He figured it would be smart to find someplace safe to gather his thoughts. It would be best to do so before nightfall, so he started walking faster, following the path lit up in his mind.
    “Just about another hundred meters this way, and— Huh?!”
    “GRAARGH!”
    Senior was so focused on following the path to “safety”, he paid no mind to his surroundings, and did not notice the strange creature approaching from his left. Whatever it was, its massive jaw closed around Senior’s chest, and he was lifted up into the air and shook brutally back and forth, the sharp teeth of the beast ripping his flesh apart with each movement.
    “GYAAAAH!”
    Senior let out a primal scream, and tried to punch the creature with his free arm, but it was no use.
    The beast’s iron jaw remained closed, and the life soon drained from Senior’s body, as most of his organs and blood poured down onto the grass below him. His entire torso had been ripped to bits, and what was left of him was soon devoured by the beast, leaving only pools of blood and a few chunks of flesh behind.
     
     
    About an hour later, Ranzo arrived at the scene of Senior’s death. Taking one look at the pool of blood and gore, Ranzo clicked his tongue, and turned back.
    “Guess someone got to him before me. Oh well, time to look for the next guy, I guess.”
    Whistling a song to himself, Ranzo spun his scythe around, matching the song’s rhythm as he walked back into the depths of the forest, looking for new prey to hunt.
     

    Elsewhere:
    Arcadeotic sat at the end of a cliff, looking at the waterfall below him with a emotionless expression, balancing a katana on his feet. A single sudden motion would surely send the sword tumbling down the fifty meter long drop.
    Arcadeotic was wearing a blue yukata, stained red with the blood of a pack of wild boars he had killed an hour ago. After cooking some of their meat on a fire, he had eaten some for himself, then tossed the rest down into the abyss. He had no intentions of sharing the meat with anyone else, nor did he want the smell of the meat to attract possible predators. He had extinguished the fire as soon as he was done cooking the meat, but it might still have notified someone of his location. Nevertheless, Arcadeotic sat completely still on the cliff, staring out into nothingness.
    Sure enough, after another few minutes, the sound of footsteps could be heard behind him.
    Still, Arcadeotic remaind motionless, not facing his attacker.
     
    Sneaking up behind him was Thatcomicguy, clutching his spear with his right hand. In his free arm was a wooden shield, covered in thick leather. Other than his weapons, Thatcomicguy was completely naked, though his body was covered in blue war paint.
    Thatcomicguy snuck up to Arcadeotic until he was a mere two meters away, then stabbed at Arcadeotic’s back with his spear. Right before the spear hit Arcadeotic’s back, he jumped straight up into the air, grabbed his katana, and in the same motion as he drew it from its sheath, he cut at Thatcomicguy’s chest.
    Thatcomicguy barely had time to block the slice with his shield, and was forced back a few steps from the impact.
    Meanwhile, Arcadeotic landed gracefully on the edge of the cliff, and quickly moved in for another attack, cutting at Thatcomicguy’s left foot.
    Arcadeotic closed the distance between them in a second, and mercilessly sliced a deep cut in Thatcomicguy’s calf.
    “Ugh…”
    Thatcomicguy groaned in pain, and pushed his shield forward defensively, hitting Arcadeotic in the chest.
    Arcadeotic fell backwards, but quickly regained his balance.
    For the first time in the fight, Arcadeotic glanced at his opponent, and chuckled.
    “You look ridiculous.”
    Thatcomicguy paid him no mind, and tried to focus on his plan of attack. He should have the upper hand, even with the cut on his leg, as he had the longest reach thanks to his spear, and a shield to block the katana’s slashes. The leather on his shield had taken a hit already, and was already starting to come apart. It probably wouldn’t last too long.
    Seemingly having come up with a plan, Thatcomicguy stepped forward. Although the pain in his leg was nothing to joke about, he did not let it stop him.
    “Yeah, well, we’ll see who gets the last laugh.”
    Keeping just enough distance between himself and his opponent, so that the katana would not be able to reach him, Thatcomicguy thrust his spear towards Arcadeotic. Arcadeotic easily deflected the thrust, but as he was about to counterattack, Thatcomicguy swiftly changed his grip, turning his spear downwards towards Arcadeotic leg, and dug the tip of his spear into Arcadeotic’s knee. Arcadeotic winced in response, but didn’t let the pain stop him from fighting. Not wasting any time, Arcadeotic slashed two times, but both attacks were blocked by Thatcomicguy’s pesky shield.
    “Tch.”
    It became impossible for Arcadeotic to stand on his wounded leg, which meant he would be at an even bigger disadvantage than before. His strongest point was his speed, but without his full mobility, he would be unable to close the distance between himself and his opponent fast enough to stop the spear from keeping him at bay.
    “... An eye for an eye, huh?”
    Arcadeotic said to himself, as he tried to come up with a way out of the dire situation. He had cut his opponent’s leg, but in return, his own knee had been damaged. Both of them were less mobile, but it seemed like his own injury was a bit more serious.
    “Well, what can you do.”
    Arcadeotic walked forward with awkward steps, his wounded leg mostly just being dragged along the ground.
    “I’ll end this with one strike.”
    The bold statement from Arcadeotic made Thatcomicguy snicker.
    “Oh, is that so? Well by all means, come at me.”
    Thatcomicguy spat back, readied his spear, and covered his chest with his shield. There was no way Arcadeotic would be able to attack his opponent’s torso. And yet…
    “Hmph!”
    With a grunt, Arcadeotic jumped forward, and with all his might, he slammed the flat side of his sword into the wooden shield. The impact made Thatcomicguy stagger, and he let out a painful groan as he put all his weight on his wounded leg.
    Still in the air, Arcadeotic slashed downwards. His sword moved along the rough leather covering the wooden shield, until it reached Thatcomicguy’s exposed shoulder. The sharp blade slashed open the naked shoulder, making Thatcomicguy drop his shield. Unfortunately for Arcadeotic, he was unable to brace himself properly after the attack, and he crashed into the ground, dropping his katana. The air was knocked out of him as his chest collided with the rough ground. But, he wasn’t done there. Although the world around him was spinning, he used his healthy leg to kick violently at Thatcomicguy’s wounded foot.
    “Guaaah!”
    Thatcomicguy screamed, as he too fell to the ground, paralyzed by pain.
    Crawling towards his katana, Arcadeotic was ready to deliver the finishing blow. He gripped the hilt of his weapon, and turned towards his fallen enemy. Although every part of his body hurt, Arcadeotic somehow managed to stand, and moved towards his prey with clumsy movements.
    “Hya!”
    As he reached his target, he brought his katana above his shoulder, and slashed mercilessly at Thatcomicguy's neck.
    Clink.
    The sound of something breaking made Arcadeotic look at his sword in confusion. The katana’s blade had snapped in half, most likely a result from his fall. And since the blade had broken mid swing, he had not actually hit his opponent.
    “Well, shi—”
    Before Arcadeotic could finish his sentence, the tip of a spear dug into his throat, making a spray of fresh blood shoot out from the wound, dying Thatcomicguy’s skin in red.
    As Arcadeotic’s dead body hit the floor, Thatcomicguy dropped his spear, as the strength began to leave his body.
    “You… Tough bastard…”
    With those words, he passed out.
     

     
    Meanwhile, at the outskirts of the forest:

     
    “How’s this place?”
    “Hmm, looks good. We’ll camp here for now. Someone start a fire.”
    “Ugh, do you think there are any more of those things out there? I’m not sure I’m comfortable sleeping here, out in the open…”
    “Don’t worry, we’ll take shifts keeping guard. #28, #6, you two take the first shift.”
    “Huh? Who died and made you the boss?”
    Four figures, covered in mud and blood, were talking under the cover of a giant tree, just half a kilometer from the edge of the forest. The four of them were members of Fuwanovel, and contenders in the death game that had started previously that day. But, neither of them wanted to kill their fellow members, and as a result, they had formed a team.
    Shortly after they teamed up, however, they were attacked by giant monsters that seemed to live in the depths of the forest. Hungry and tired, the four of them had finally reached a seemingly peaceful area, and were setting up camp with what little resources they had.
    The four members were Sayaka (#28), Norleas (#9), Shikomizue (#13) and Kiriririri (#6).
    Shikomizue was the natural leader type, and had taken the lead of the group as a result, something that did not sit well with Sayaka.
    “Why do I have to listen to your orders, huh? I’m tired too! I want to sleep just as much as the next guy!”
    “Look, I don’t mean to be rude here, but in terms of actual combat abilities, me and #9 are the strongest. We need our rest, so that we can protect this group when the time comes. You and #6 are… Well you know.”
    Shikomizue gestured towards Kiriririri, a small girl with silver hair, who was poking the ground with a wooden stick, paying no mind to the conversation that was happening around her. So far, she had not participated in the fighting at all.
    “Okay, I’ll give you her, but we’re not that crazy! Master and I helped you in the fight against those… Those things, didn’t we?!”
    Sayaka pointed in the direction they had come from, where the group had fought against numerous strange beasts.
    Shikomizue scratched his head awkwardly in response. He did not want the group to start fighting among each other, as that would just make things worse. He wanted to figure out what was going on, and how to get out of it. In order to do that, he needed to get as many people as possible to form a team. If no one killed each other, the “game” or whatever it was, had to come to a stop. That was the conclusion he had reached.
    “Fine, I’ll take the first shift, along with… Her.”
    Shikomizue looked towards Kiriririri, who had just finished drawing a strange symbol in the grass.
    “Alright then, let’s get that fire going and—”
    “Get down, something is coming.”
    Norleas reached behind his back and fished out the two daggers he was storing in his jacket, then crouched down, signaling for the others to do the same.
    The group gathered together, and those who had them drew their weapons.
    “What did you see?”
    Shikomizue did not have to wait for a response, as a large bear, covered in metal plating, walked past them. It was looking around, like it was searching for the group. It looked… Off. It looked intelligent, just like the other beasts they had fought that day.
    “Something is definitely not right with these things. They started attacking us right after we formed a team. Almost like… Someone doesn’t want us to team up.”
    Shikomizue thought to himself, as he recalled the days events. Actually, every time they had been away for combat for a certain period of time, something would come and attack them.
    Almost like something, or someone, were controlling them. If that was the case, then...
    “Master, behind you!”
    Sayaka shouted to himself, and jumped forward. In the next second, a large paw covered in metal slammed down on the very spot Sayaka had been standing.
    Reaching into his maid uniform, Sayaka fished out a strange statue, in the shape of an anime figure.
    “They know we’re here master, so we might as well make some noise.”
    Turning the head of the statue around 180 degrees, Sayaka threw it behind the tree, where the second bear had attacked from.
    “Everyone, if you don’t want to go boom, I suggest you run!”
    Moments later, the figure exploded, turning the ground beneath it to ash, blowing the bear to bits in the process.
    The other bear was alerted to their presence, and jumped at Norleas, who slashed at its snout with his daggers before it had time to react. The beast roared in pain, and slammed its massive paw towards Norleas, who elegantly jumped out of the paws path, and went in for another attack.
    While the plate armor proved to be an obstacle, Norleas still managed to bring the massive beast down in a matter of seconds, as a flurry of dagger cuts tore into its hide like it was butter, always finding the unprotected parts of the bears body.

    Meanwhile, Shikomizue was fending of two wolves with his wakizashi katanas, holding back one wolf with each blade, as he pressed them against the wolves sharp fangs.
    “Where is #6? Someone cover her.”
    “Yes, yes, Master and I got her, don’t worry.”
    Throwing explosive statues at everything that moved inside the forest, Sayaka jumped around Kiriririri, who was sitting on the ground, watching the fighting happen around her with an indifferent expression.
    “Ohh, we’re gonna make master so proud, yes we are, tralala.”
    Sayaka sang as he looked up at the sky, throwing statues now seemingly at random. A few landed close to Norleas, but he simply moved out of their path with incredible speed each time, still slashing and stabbing any beast that came in his way with his daggers.
     
    The group fended off countless beasts, until finally, only one remained. It was a massive tiger, also covered in metal plating like the bears from before. The beast’s eyes were glowing in a strange blue light, and it moved faster than any other creature they had fought so far.
    Sayaka had tried throwing several statues at it, but it always got out of the blast zone before it was damaged.
    Norleas was unable to get close to the beast as well, as it was simply too fast.
    Shikomizue knew they were out of options.
    “Tch… Is this really how it ends?”
    He clicked his tongue, and started to walk towards the beast while he shook his head.
    “Am I really doing this?”
    After glancing over his shoulder, taking another look at his three teammates, Shikomizue nodded, and closed his eyes.
    “Listen up. I know what’s going on. These things are being controlled by someone. As long as we’re in a group, we’ll be sitting ducks. They are either being controlled by whoever started this fucked up game... Someone who wants us to keep fighting, or it’s another contender, in which case we should split up to try and find the bastard.
    So...  Guys, split up. Run. For now, just get as far away from each other as possible.”
    “GRAAWRH!”
    Like it understood what Shikomizue was saying, the tiger roared, and charged at the group. It was not happy.
    “Yes come on, you stupid cat.”
    Shikomizue charged as well, running straight ahead, towards the beast’s fangs.
    Then…
    “GUAAH!”
    Shikomizue screamed in pain, as the tiger bit him, its large fangs digging into his left side.
    “I’ll keep this thing at bay… You guys… Run away… Now!”
    Lifting up his free arm, Shikomizue gripped his katana firmly, and slashed at the tiger’s front legs, which were not covered by armor. That should slow it down. The thing was, it would have been impossible to target its legs without making it stop first. And, the only way to do that was to make it stop moving, for instance, by letting it bite one of them. Shikomizue had realized this a while ago, as he watched his comrades fail to hit the beast, and he had given his own life so that the other three could live.
    “You guys better figure out what the fuck is going on here, and stop this ‘game’, alright?”
    Shikomizue looked over his shoulder, watching as his allies ran into different directions. No beasts chased them.
    Pleased that he his plan had worked, Shikomizue fished out a cigarette from pocket, and moved it to his mouth, his hand shaking. He didn’t have anything to light it with, but he still put it in his mouth, and took a deep breath, closing his eyes.
    That was his last breath.
         
     
    Norleas walked through the forest in silence. His daggers were still dripping with blood from the countless monsters he had killed. Still, he had not even broken a sweat. Killing was his job, after all. It was a breath of fresh air for him to kill beasts instead of people.
    It was strange. The person whose job was to take people’s lives had chosen to join an alliance to avoid killing others.
    It was different this time, after all. The people in question were his friends. His fellow Fuwanovel users. There was no way he could kill them.
    Sensing something moving behind him, Norleas gripped his dagger, and prepared for battle. But…
    “Oh, it’s just you.”
    He lowered his weapons. Behind him stood the strange girl from before, Kiriririri.
    “What, didn’t you hear what the boss said? We’re supposed to split up. What, are you scared in the dark by yourself?”
    Kiriririri didn't’ say anything. She simply lifted her arm, pointing into the darkness behind Norleas.
    “What? What is… It…”
    Norleas turned around to look at what she was pointing at, and suddenly felt a sharp pain in his abdomen. Looking down at his own stomach, he saw a silvery blade sticking out from his chest, covered in fresh blood.
    “Wh-What…”
    “Hehe.”
    The laughter of a little girl was the last thing he heard, as his lifeless body fell to the floor.
    Kiriririri pulled the sword out of Norleas’ corpse, and it soon turned into light particles, vanishing into thin air.
    Kiriririri then simply kept walking through the forest with an emotionless expression.

     
     
     
    Kiriririri: Status = Alive
    Sayaka: Status = Alive



     
    Wildcards This Week?
    None
     
    Dead This Week:
    Still Alive:
     
  3. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Weiterfechten for a blog entry, Fuwa Battle Royale - Week 1 -   
    Fuwanovel Battle Royale - Volume 2 -
    Chapter 1: The Beginning
     
    <??> Watched the screen in front of <him/her?> intently. Everything was ready. The time had finally come. All that planning, all that preparation. It had all been for this moment.
    “All the pieces are in place. Well then, let’s start the game, shall we?”
    <??> Pressed the button before <him/her?> with a wicked smile.
    “Hear me, members of Fuwanovel. You are here for a single purpose; to entertain me! Those who have their name announced over these broadcasts shall enter the arena, and fight to the death! Anyone and anything you see out in the arenas will be an enemy, so be careful… And ruthless. As far as the rules go… There are none, heh.
    Good luck.”
     
    Day 1:
    Members in this chapter:

    “The game has begun. Good luck.”
    “‘Alright, time to hunt.” Ranzo jumped down from the platform he was standing on, numbered ‘11’. He had woken up inside an unfamiliar room just moments before, where he had found his suit and weapons. After a short, confusing briefing from the person in charge, Ranzo’s <cell?> had opened, and he could walk out. What greeted him was a massive forest, full of large trees towering high above him. The large trees blocked out almost all the sunlight, making it hard for Ranzo to see where he was going. But, it was either straight ahead, or back to the cell, so Ranzo chose to keep walking.
    The “briefing” had been simple. “You are stuck here. You are to fight anything and anyone you come across. If you are the last alive after the game is over, you win. If you die, you lose.”
    “Gee, really? If I die, I lose? That’s a shocker.” Ranzo spun his scythe around his body with precision while he walked, clearly used to handling the weapon. A sabre hung from his waist in a makeshift sheathe, crafted from his belt.
    After having advanced through the forest for a good ten minutes, Ranzo reached a suspicious looking cave, marked with a number— “7”.
    “Hm, another contender?” Ranzo whispered, and gripped the handle of his scythe firmly while he scanned his surroundings. If his hunch was right, the numbers represented contenders in the “game”. He was 11, and “7” was a different Fuwanovel user, also entered in the game.
    Crack.
    Ranzo spun around instinctively at the sound of a branch breaking behind him, and in the same motion, he threw his scythe forwards. The sound of metal colliding with metal made Ranzo flinch for a brief second, and he lost sight of the person who had knocked his scythe out of the air.
    “Tch.” Ranzo gripped his sabre and chased the mystery person, like a wolf rushing towards a sheep. He had no plan. The only thing going through his head was: kill it. Whoever or whatever it was; kill it.
     
    Meanwhile
    SeniorBlitz ran as fast as he could through the forest, like he had the grim reaper himself on his heels. That was in fact what Senior had thought for a second when he saw the scythe fly towards him just moments before. Senior was not well versed in any kind of combat. He had, in fact, never been in a fight in his entire life. What he did have, however, was a special ability. The ability to know what to do, where to go. He couldn’t explain it well, but there was something guiding him at all times. If he was about to trip and fall, something in his mind would tell him to stop. If he ever got lost, something would guide him back home, even if he had no idea where he was. It was thanks to that power, that guide, that Senior was still alive. He had seen the scythe coming seconds before it was thrown, and had used the sword that was given to him at the start of the game to block its path. He had sadly dropped the sword in his escape, and was therefore now unarmed.
    “Stop running my friend, I wish you no harm!”
    His attacker was shouting at Senior from behind. Thanks to his ability, Senior knew that he would be able to shake off his tail if he just kept following the path laid out in his mind. He did not look back, he did not falter.
    “Tch, you little… How long do you plan on running for?”
    “I’ll catch you eventually you little slime! Just you wait, I’m coming for you!”
    The voice of his attacker grew distant, as Senior just kept on running through the forest. Before long, he had completely shaken off the madman running after him.
    “Haah, haah, haah…” Senior finally had the opportunity to stop for a breath. With his hands on his knees, he spent a few minutes calming down. He knew that the man behind him would not be able to find him for at least another ten minutes, thanks to his ability.
    “Alright, time to find a better place to hide.”
    Senior got back up, and started walking through the dense forest, looking for shelter. He figured it would be smart to find someplace safe to gather his thoughts. It would be best to do so before nightfall, so he started walking faster, following the path lit up in his mind.
    “Just about another hundred meters this way, and— Huh?!”
    “GRAARGH!”
    Senior was so focused on following the path to “safety”, he paid no mind to his surroundings, and did not notice the strange creature approaching from his left. Whatever it was, its massive jaw closed around Senior’s chest, and he was lifted up into the air and shook brutally back and forth, the sharp teeth of the beast ripping his flesh apart with each movement.
    “GYAAAAH!”
    Senior let out a primal scream, and tried to punch the creature with his free arm, but it was no use.
    The beast’s iron jaw remained closed, and the life soon drained from Senior’s body, as most of his organs and blood poured down onto the grass below him. His entire torso had been ripped to bits, and what was left of him was soon devoured by the beast, leaving only pools of blood and a few chunks of flesh behind.
     
     
    About an hour later, Ranzo arrived at the scene of Senior’s death. Taking one look at the pool of blood and gore, Ranzo clicked his tongue, and turned back.
    “Guess someone got to him before me. Oh well, time to look for the next guy, I guess.”
    Whistling a song to himself, Ranzo spun his scythe around, matching the song’s rhythm as he walked back into the depths of the forest, looking for new prey to hunt.
     

    Elsewhere:
    Arcadeotic sat at the end of a cliff, looking at the waterfall below him with a emotionless expression, balancing a katana on his feet. A single sudden motion would surely send the sword tumbling down the fifty meter long drop.
    Arcadeotic was wearing a blue yukata, stained red with the blood of a pack of wild boars he had killed an hour ago. After cooking some of their meat on a fire, he had eaten some for himself, then tossed the rest down into the abyss. He had no intentions of sharing the meat with anyone else, nor did he want the smell of the meat to attract possible predators. He had extinguished the fire as soon as he was done cooking the meat, but it might still have notified someone of his location. Nevertheless, Arcadeotic sat completely still on the cliff, staring out into nothingness.
    Sure enough, after another few minutes, the sound of footsteps could be heard behind him.
    Still, Arcadeotic remaind motionless, not facing his attacker.
     
    Sneaking up behind him was Thatcomicguy, clutching his spear with his right hand. In his free arm was a wooden shield, covered in thick leather. Other than his weapons, Thatcomicguy was completely naked, though his body was covered in blue war paint.
    Thatcomicguy snuck up to Arcadeotic until he was a mere two meters away, then stabbed at Arcadeotic’s back with his spear. Right before the spear hit Arcadeotic’s back, he jumped straight up into the air, grabbed his katana, and in the same motion as he drew it from its sheath, he cut at Thatcomicguy’s chest.
    Thatcomicguy barely had time to block the slice with his shield, and was forced back a few steps from the impact.
    Meanwhile, Arcadeotic landed gracefully on the edge of the cliff, and quickly moved in for another attack, cutting at Thatcomicguy’s left foot.
    Arcadeotic closed the distance between them in a second, and mercilessly sliced a deep cut in Thatcomicguy’s calf.
    “Ugh…”
    Thatcomicguy groaned in pain, and pushed his shield forward defensively, hitting Arcadeotic in the chest.
    Arcadeotic fell backwards, but quickly regained his balance.
    For the first time in the fight, Arcadeotic glanced at his opponent, and chuckled.
    “You look ridiculous.”
    Thatcomicguy paid him no mind, and tried to focus on his plan of attack. He should have the upper hand, even with the cut on his leg, as he had the longest reach thanks to his spear, and a shield to block the katana’s slashes. The leather on his shield had taken a hit already, and was already starting to come apart. It probably wouldn’t last too long.
    Seemingly having come up with a plan, Thatcomicguy stepped forward. Although the pain in his leg was nothing to joke about, he did not let it stop him.
    “Yeah, well, we’ll see who gets the last laugh.”
    Keeping just enough distance between himself and his opponent, so that the katana would not be able to reach him, Thatcomicguy thrust his spear towards Arcadeotic. Arcadeotic easily deflected the thrust, but as he was about to counterattack, Thatcomicguy swiftly changed his grip, turning his spear downwards towards Arcadeotic leg, and dug the tip of his spear into Arcadeotic’s knee. Arcadeotic winced in response, but didn’t let the pain stop him from fighting. Not wasting any time, Arcadeotic slashed two times, but both attacks were blocked by Thatcomicguy’s pesky shield.
    “Tch.”
    It became impossible for Arcadeotic to stand on his wounded leg, which meant he would be at an even bigger disadvantage than before. His strongest point was his speed, but without his full mobility, he would be unable to close the distance between himself and his opponent fast enough to stop the spear from keeping him at bay.
    “... An eye for an eye, huh?”
    Arcadeotic said to himself, as he tried to come up with a way out of the dire situation. He had cut his opponent’s leg, but in return, his own knee had been damaged. Both of them were less mobile, but it seemed like his own injury was a bit more serious.
    “Well, what can you do.”
    Arcadeotic walked forward with awkward steps, his wounded leg mostly just being dragged along the ground.
    “I’ll end this with one strike.”
    The bold statement from Arcadeotic made Thatcomicguy snicker.
    “Oh, is that so? Well by all means, come at me.”
    Thatcomicguy spat back, readied his spear, and covered his chest with his shield. There was no way Arcadeotic would be able to attack his opponent’s torso. And yet…
    “Hmph!”
    With a grunt, Arcadeotic jumped forward, and with all his might, he slammed the flat side of his sword into the wooden shield. The impact made Thatcomicguy stagger, and he let out a painful groan as he put all his weight on his wounded leg.
    Still in the air, Arcadeotic slashed downwards. His sword moved along the rough leather covering the wooden shield, until it reached Thatcomicguy’s exposed shoulder. The sharp blade slashed open the naked shoulder, making Thatcomicguy drop his shield. Unfortunately for Arcadeotic, he was unable to brace himself properly after the attack, and he crashed into the ground, dropping his katana. The air was knocked out of him as his chest collided with the rough ground. But, he wasn’t done there. Although the world around him was spinning, he used his healthy leg to kick violently at Thatcomicguy’s wounded foot.
    “Guaaah!”
    Thatcomicguy screamed, as he too fell to the ground, paralyzed by pain.
    Crawling towards his katana, Arcadeotic was ready to deliver the finishing blow. He gripped the hilt of his weapon, and turned towards his fallen enemy. Although every part of his body hurt, Arcadeotic somehow managed to stand, and moved towards his prey with clumsy movements.
    “Hya!”
    As he reached his target, he brought his katana above his shoulder, and slashed mercilessly at Thatcomicguy's neck.
    Clink.
    The sound of something breaking made Arcadeotic look at his sword in confusion. The katana’s blade had snapped in half, most likely a result from his fall. And since the blade had broken mid swing, he had not actually hit his opponent.
    “Well, shi—”
    Before Arcadeotic could finish his sentence, the tip of a spear dug into his throat, making a spray of fresh blood shoot out from the wound, dying Thatcomicguy’s skin in red.
    As Arcadeotic’s dead body hit the floor, Thatcomicguy dropped his spear, as the strength began to leave his body.
    “You… Tough bastard…”
    With those words, he passed out.
     

     
    Meanwhile, at the outskirts of the forest:

     
    “How’s this place?”
    “Hmm, looks good. We’ll camp here for now. Someone start a fire.”
    “Ugh, do you think there are any more of those things out there? I’m not sure I’m comfortable sleeping here, out in the open…”
    “Don’t worry, we’ll take shifts keeping guard. #28, #6, you two take the first shift.”
    “Huh? Who died and made you the boss?”
    Four figures, covered in mud and blood, were talking under the cover of a giant tree, just half a kilometer from the edge of the forest. The four of them were members of Fuwanovel, and contenders in the death game that had started previously that day. But, neither of them wanted to kill their fellow members, and as a result, they had formed a team.
    Shortly after they teamed up, however, they were attacked by giant monsters that seemed to live in the depths of the forest. Hungry and tired, the four of them had finally reached a seemingly peaceful area, and were setting up camp with what little resources they had.
    The four members were Sayaka (#28), Norleas (#9), Shikomizue (#13) and Kiriririri (#6).
    Shikomizue was the natural leader type, and had taken the lead of the group as a result, something that did not sit well with Sayaka.
    “Why do I have to listen to your orders, huh? I’m tired too! I want to sleep just as much as the next guy!”
    “Look, I don’t mean to be rude here, but in terms of actual combat abilities, me and #9 are the strongest. We need our rest, so that we can protect this group when the time comes. You and #6 are… Well you know.”
    Shikomizue gestured towards Kiriririri, a small girl with silver hair, who was poking the ground with a wooden stick, paying no mind to the conversation that was happening around her. So far, she had not participated in the fighting at all.
    “Okay, I’ll give you her, but we’re not that crazy! Master and I helped you in the fight against those… Those things, didn’t we?!”
    Sayaka pointed in the direction they had come from, where the group had fought against numerous strange beasts.
    Shikomizue scratched his head awkwardly in response. He did not want the group to start fighting among each other, as that would just make things worse. He wanted to figure out what was going on, and how to get out of it. In order to do that, he needed to get as many people as possible to form a team. If no one killed each other, the “game” or whatever it was, had to come to a stop. That was the conclusion he had reached.
    “Fine, I’ll take the first shift, along with… Her.”
    Shikomizue looked towards Kiriririri, who had just finished drawing a strange symbol in the grass.
    “Alright then, let’s get that fire going and—”
    “Get down, something is coming.”
    Norleas reached behind his back and fished out the two daggers he was storing in his jacket, then crouched down, signaling for the others to do the same.
    The group gathered together, and those who had them drew their weapons.
    “What did you see?”
    Shikomizue did not have to wait for a response, as a large bear, covered in metal plating, walked past them. It was looking around, like it was searching for the group. It looked… Off. It looked intelligent, just like the other beasts they had fought that day.
    “Something is definitely not right with these things. They started attacking us right after we formed a team. Almost like… Someone doesn’t want us to team up.”
    Shikomizue thought to himself, as he recalled the days events. Actually, every time they had been away for combat for a certain period of time, something would come and attack them.
    Almost like something, or someone, were controlling them. If that was the case, then...
    “Master, behind you!”
    Sayaka shouted to himself, and jumped forward. In the next second, a large paw covered in metal slammed down on the very spot Sayaka had been standing.
    Reaching into his maid uniform, Sayaka fished out a strange statue, in the shape of an anime figure.
    “They know we’re here master, so we might as well make some noise.”
    Turning the head of the statue around 180 degrees, Sayaka threw it behind the tree, where the second bear had attacked from.
    “Everyone, if you don’t want to go boom, I suggest you run!”
    Moments later, the figure exploded, turning the ground beneath it to ash, blowing the bear to bits in the process.
    The other bear was alerted to their presence, and jumped at Norleas, who slashed at its snout with his daggers before it had time to react. The beast roared in pain, and slammed its massive paw towards Norleas, who elegantly jumped out of the paws path, and went in for another attack.
    While the plate armor proved to be an obstacle, Norleas still managed to bring the massive beast down in a matter of seconds, as a flurry of dagger cuts tore into its hide like it was butter, always finding the unprotected parts of the bears body.

    Meanwhile, Shikomizue was fending of two wolves with his wakizashi katanas, holding back one wolf with each blade, as he pressed them against the wolves sharp fangs.
    “Where is #6? Someone cover her.”
    “Yes, yes, Master and I got her, don’t worry.”
    Throwing explosive statues at everything that moved inside the forest, Sayaka jumped around Kiriririri, who was sitting on the ground, watching the fighting happen around her with an indifferent expression.
    “Ohh, we’re gonna make master so proud, yes we are, tralala.”
    Sayaka sang as he looked up at the sky, throwing statues now seemingly at random. A few landed close to Norleas, but he simply moved out of their path with incredible speed each time, still slashing and stabbing any beast that came in his way with his daggers.
     
    The group fended off countless beasts, until finally, only one remained. It was a massive tiger, also covered in metal plating like the bears from before. The beast’s eyes were glowing in a strange blue light, and it moved faster than any other creature they had fought so far.
    Sayaka had tried throwing several statues at it, but it always got out of the blast zone before it was damaged.
    Norleas was unable to get close to the beast as well, as it was simply too fast.
    Shikomizue knew they were out of options.
    “Tch… Is this really how it ends?”
    He clicked his tongue, and started to walk towards the beast while he shook his head.
    “Am I really doing this?”
    After glancing over his shoulder, taking another look at his three teammates, Shikomizue nodded, and closed his eyes.
    “Listen up. I know what’s going on. These things are being controlled by someone. As long as we’re in a group, we’ll be sitting ducks. They are either being controlled by whoever started this fucked up game... Someone who wants us to keep fighting, or it’s another contender, in which case we should split up to try and find the bastard.
    So...  Guys, split up. Run. For now, just get as far away from each other as possible.”
    “GRAAWRH!”
    Like it understood what Shikomizue was saying, the tiger roared, and charged at the group. It was not happy.
    “Yes come on, you stupid cat.”
    Shikomizue charged as well, running straight ahead, towards the beast’s fangs.
    Then…
    “GUAAH!”
    Shikomizue screamed in pain, as the tiger bit him, its large fangs digging into his left side.
    “I’ll keep this thing at bay… You guys… Run away… Now!”
    Lifting up his free arm, Shikomizue gripped his katana firmly, and slashed at the tiger’s front legs, which were not covered by armor. That should slow it down. The thing was, it would have been impossible to target its legs without making it stop first. And, the only way to do that was to make it stop moving, for instance, by letting it bite one of them. Shikomizue had realized this a while ago, as he watched his comrades fail to hit the beast, and he had given his own life so that the other three could live.
    “You guys better figure out what the fuck is going on here, and stop this ‘game’, alright?”
    Shikomizue looked over his shoulder, watching as his allies ran into different directions. No beasts chased them.
    Pleased that he his plan had worked, Shikomizue fished out a cigarette from pocket, and moved it to his mouth, his hand shaking. He didn’t have anything to light it with, but he still put it in his mouth, and took a deep breath, closing his eyes.
    That was his last breath.
         
     
    Norleas walked through the forest in silence. His daggers were still dripping with blood from the countless monsters he had killed. Still, he had not even broken a sweat. Killing was his job, after all. It was a breath of fresh air for him to kill beasts instead of people.
    It was strange. The person whose job was to take people’s lives had chosen to join an alliance to avoid killing others.
    It was different this time, after all. The people in question were his friends. His fellow Fuwanovel users. There was no way he could kill them.
    Sensing something moving behind him, Norleas gripped his dagger, and prepared for battle. But…
    “Oh, it’s just you.”
    He lowered his weapons. Behind him stood the strange girl from before, Kiriririri.
    “What, didn’t you hear what the boss said? We’re supposed to split up. What, are you scared in the dark by yourself?”
    Kiriririri didn't’ say anything. She simply lifted her arm, pointing into the darkness behind Norleas.
    “What? What is… It…”
    Norleas turned around to look at what she was pointing at, and suddenly felt a sharp pain in his abdomen. Looking down at his own stomach, he saw a silvery blade sticking out from his chest, covered in fresh blood.
    “Wh-What…”
    “Hehe.”
    The laughter of a little girl was the last thing he heard, as his lifeless body fell to the floor.
    Kiriririri pulled the sword out of Norleas’ corpse, and it soon turned into light particles, vanishing into thin air.
    Kiriririri then simply kept walking through the forest with an emotionless expression.

     
     
     
    Kiriririri: Status = Alive
    Sayaka: Status = Alive



     
    Wildcards This Week?
    None
     
    Dead This Week:
    Still Alive:
     
  4. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Sayaka for a blog entry, Fuwa Battle Royale - Week 1 -   
    Fuwanovel Battle Royale - Volume 2 -
    Chapter 1: The Beginning
     
    <??> Watched the screen in front of <him/her?> intently. Everything was ready. The time had finally come. All that planning, all that preparation. It had all been for this moment.
    “All the pieces are in place. Well then, let’s start the game, shall we?”
    <??> Pressed the button before <him/her?> with a wicked smile.
    “Hear me, members of Fuwanovel. You are here for a single purpose; to entertain me! Those who have their name announced over these broadcasts shall enter the arena, and fight to the death! Anyone and anything you see out in the arenas will be an enemy, so be careful… And ruthless. As far as the rules go… There are none, heh.
    Good luck.”
     
    Day 1:
    Members in this chapter:

    “The game has begun. Good luck.”
    “‘Alright, time to hunt.” Ranzo jumped down from the platform he was standing on, numbered ‘11’. He had woken up inside an unfamiliar room just moments before, where he had found his suit and weapons. After a short, confusing briefing from the person in charge, Ranzo’s <cell?> had opened, and he could walk out. What greeted him was a massive forest, full of large trees towering high above him. The large trees blocked out almost all the sunlight, making it hard for Ranzo to see where he was going. But, it was either straight ahead, or back to the cell, so Ranzo chose to keep walking.
    The “briefing” had been simple. “You are stuck here. You are to fight anything and anyone you come across. If you are the last alive after the game is over, you win. If you die, you lose.”
    “Gee, really? If I die, I lose? That’s a shocker.” Ranzo spun his scythe around his body with precision while he walked, clearly used to handling the weapon. A sabre hung from his waist in a makeshift sheathe, crafted from his belt.
    After having advanced through the forest for a good ten minutes, Ranzo reached a suspicious looking cave, marked with a number— “7”.
    “Hm, another contender?” Ranzo whispered, and gripped the handle of his scythe firmly while he scanned his surroundings. If his hunch was right, the numbers represented contenders in the “game”. He was 11, and “7” was a different Fuwanovel user, also entered in the game.
    Crack.
    Ranzo spun around instinctively at the sound of a branch breaking behind him, and in the same motion, he threw his scythe forwards. The sound of metal colliding with metal made Ranzo flinch for a brief second, and he lost sight of the person who had knocked his scythe out of the air.
    “Tch.” Ranzo gripped his sabre and chased the mystery person, like a wolf rushing towards a sheep. He had no plan. The only thing going through his head was: kill it. Whoever or whatever it was; kill it.
     
    Meanwhile
    SeniorBlitz ran as fast as he could through the forest, like he had the grim reaper himself on his heels. That was in fact what Senior had thought for a second when he saw the scythe fly towards him just moments before. Senior was not well versed in any kind of combat. He had, in fact, never been in a fight in his entire life. What he did have, however, was a special ability. The ability to know what to do, where to go. He couldn’t explain it well, but there was something guiding him at all times. If he was about to trip and fall, something in his mind would tell him to stop. If he ever got lost, something would guide him back home, even if he had no idea where he was. It was thanks to that power, that guide, that Senior was still alive. He had seen the scythe coming seconds before it was thrown, and had used the sword that was given to him at the start of the game to block its path. He had sadly dropped the sword in his escape, and was therefore now unarmed.
    “Stop running my friend, I wish you no harm!”
    His attacker was shouting at Senior from behind. Thanks to his ability, Senior knew that he would be able to shake off his tail if he just kept following the path laid out in his mind. He did not look back, he did not falter.
    “Tch, you little… How long do you plan on running for?”
    “I’ll catch you eventually you little slime! Just you wait, I’m coming for you!”
    The voice of his attacker grew distant, as Senior just kept on running through the forest. Before long, he had completely shaken off the madman running after him.
    “Haah, haah, haah…” Senior finally had the opportunity to stop for a breath. With his hands on his knees, he spent a few minutes calming down. He knew that the man behind him would not be able to find him for at least another ten minutes, thanks to his ability.
    “Alright, time to find a better place to hide.”
    Senior got back up, and started walking through the dense forest, looking for shelter. He figured it would be smart to find someplace safe to gather his thoughts. It would be best to do so before nightfall, so he started walking faster, following the path lit up in his mind.
    “Just about another hundred meters this way, and— Huh?!”
    “GRAARGH!”
    Senior was so focused on following the path to “safety”, he paid no mind to his surroundings, and did not notice the strange creature approaching from his left. Whatever it was, its massive jaw closed around Senior’s chest, and he was lifted up into the air and shook brutally back and forth, the sharp teeth of the beast ripping his flesh apart with each movement.
    “GYAAAAH!”
    Senior let out a primal scream, and tried to punch the creature with his free arm, but it was no use.
    The beast’s iron jaw remained closed, and the life soon drained from Senior’s body, as most of his organs and blood poured down onto the grass below him. His entire torso had been ripped to bits, and what was left of him was soon devoured by the beast, leaving only pools of blood and a few chunks of flesh behind.
     
     
    About an hour later, Ranzo arrived at the scene of Senior’s death. Taking one look at the pool of blood and gore, Ranzo clicked his tongue, and turned back.
    “Guess someone got to him before me. Oh well, time to look for the next guy, I guess.”
    Whistling a song to himself, Ranzo spun his scythe around, matching the song’s rhythm as he walked back into the depths of the forest, looking for new prey to hunt.
     

    Elsewhere:
    Arcadeotic sat at the end of a cliff, looking at the waterfall below him with a emotionless expression, balancing a katana on his feet. A single sudden motion would surely send the sword tumbling down the fifty meter long drop.
    Arcadeotic was wearing a blue yukata, stained red with the blood of a pack of wild boars he had killed an hour ago. After cooking some of their meat on a fire, he had eaten some for himself, then tossed the rest down into the abyss. He had no intentions of sharing the meat with anyone else, nor did he want the smell of the meat to attract possible predators. He had extinguished the fire as soon as he was done cooking the meat, but it might still have notified someone of his location. Nevertheless, Arcadeotic sat completely still on the cliff, staring out into nothingness.
    Sure enough, after another few minutes, the sound of footsteps could be heard behind him.
    Still, Arcadeotic remaind motionless, not facing his attacker.
     
    Sneaking up behind him was Thatcomicguy, clutching his spear with his right hand. In his free arm was a wooden shield, covered in thick leather. Other than his weapons, Thatcomicguy was completely naked, though his body was covered in blue war paint.
    Thatcomicguy snuck up to Arcadeotic until he was a mere two meters away, then stabbed at Arcadeotic’s back with his spear. Right before the spear hit Arcadeotic’s back, he jumped straight up into the air, grabbed his katana, and in the same motion as he drew it from its sheath, he cut at Thatcomicguy’s chest.
    Thatcomicguy barely had time to block the slice with his shield, and was forced back a few steps from the impact.
    Meanwhile, Arcadeotic landed gracefully on the edge of the cliff, and quickly moved in for another attack, cutting at Thatcomicguy’s left foot.
    Arcadeotic closed the distance between them in a second, and mercilessly sliced a deep cut in Thatcomicguy’s calf.
    “Ugh…”
    Thatcomicguy groaned in pain, and pushed his shield forward defensively, hitting Arcadeotic in the chest.
    Arcadeotic fell backwards, but quickly regained his balance.
    For the first time in the fight, Arcadeotic glanced at his opponent, and chuckled.
    “You look ridiculous.”
    Thatcomicguy paid him no mind, and tried to focus on his plan of attack. He should have the upper hand, even with the cut on his leg, as he had the longest reach thanks to his spear, and a shield to block the katana’s slashes. The leather on his shield had taken a hit already, and was already starting to come apart. It probably wouldn’t last too long.
    Seemingly having come up with a plan, Thatcomicguy stepped forward. Although the pain in his leg was nothing to joke about, he did not let it stop him.
    “Yeah, well, we’ll see who gets the last laugh.”
    Keeping just enough distance between himself and his opponent, so that the katana would not be able to reach him, Thatcomicguy thrust his spear towards Arcadeotic. Arcadeotic easily deflected the thrust, but as he was about to counterattack, Thatcomicguy swiftly changed his grip, turning his spear downwards towards Arcadeotic leg, and dug the tip of his spear into Arcadeotic’s knee. Arcadeotic winced in response, but didn’t let the pain stop him from fighting. Not wasting any time, Arcadeotic slashed two times, but both attacks were blocked by Thatcomicguy’s pesky shield.
    “Tch.”
    It became impossible for Arcadeotic to stand on his wounded leg, which meant he would be at an even bigger disadvantage than before. His strongest point was his speed, but without his full mobility, he would be unable to close the distance between himself and his opponent fast enough to stop the spear from keeping him at bay.
    “... An eye for an eye, huh?”
    Arcadeotic said to himself, as he tried to come up with a way out of the dire situation. He had cut his opponent’s leg, but in return, his own knee had been damaged. Both of them were less mobile, but it seemed like his own injury was a bit more serious.
    “Well, what can you do.”
    Arcadeotic walked forward with awkward steps, his wounded leg mostly just being dragged along the ground.
    “I’ll end this with one strike.”
    The bold statement from Arcadeotic made Thatcomicguy snicker.
    “Oh, is that so? Well by all means, come at me.”
    Thatcomicguy spat back, readied his spear, and covered his chest with his shield. There was no way Arcadeotic would be able to attack his opponent’s torso. And yet…
    “Hmph!”
    With a grunt, Arcadeotic jumped forward, and with all his might, he slammed the flat side of his sword into the wooden shield. The impact made Thatcomicguy stagger, and he let out a painful groan as he put all his weight on his wounded leg.
    Still in the air, Arcadeotic slashed downwards. His sword moved along the rough leather covering the wooden shield, until it reached Thatcomicguy’s exposed shoulder. The sharp blade slashed open the naked shoulder, making Thatcomicguy drop his shield. Unfortunately for Arcadeotic, he was unable to brace himself properly after the attack, and he crashed into the ground, dropping his katana. The air was knocked out of him as his chest collided with the rough ground. But, he wasn’t done there. Although the world around him was spinning, he used his healthy leg to kick violently at Thatcomicguy’s wounded foot.
    “Guaaah!”
    Thatcomicguy screamed, as he too fell to the ground, paralyzed by pain.
    Crawling towards his katana, Arcadeotic was ready to deliver the finishing blow. He gripped the hilt of his weapon, and turned towards his fallen enemy. Although every part of his body hurt, Arcadeotic somehow managed to stand, and moved towards his prey with clumsy movements.
    “Hya!”
    As he reached his target, he brought his katana above his shoulder, and slashed mercilessly at Thatcomicguy's neck.
    Clink.
    The sound of something breaking made Arcadeotic look at his sword in confusion. The katana’s blade had snapped in half, most likely a result from his fall. And since the blade had broken mid swing, he had not actually hit his opponent.
    “Well, shi—”
    Before Arcadeotic could finish his sentence, the tip of a spear dug into his throat, making a spray of fresh blood shoot out from the wound, dying Thatcomicguy’s skin in red.
    As Arcadeotic’s dead body hit the floor, Thatcomicguy dropped his spear, as the strength began to leave his body.
    “You… Tough bastard…”
    With those words, he passed out.
     

     
    Meanwhile, at the outskirts of the forest:

     
    “How’s this place?”
    “Hmm, looks good. We’ll camp here for now. Someone start a fire.”
    “Ugh, do you think there are any more of those things out there? I’m not sure I’m comfortable sleeping here, out in the open…”
    “Don’t worry, we’ll take shifts keeping guard. #28, #6, you two take the first shift.”
    “Huh? Who died and made you the boss?”
    Four figures, covered in mud and blood, were talking under the cover of a giant tree, just half a kilometer from the edge of the forest. The four of them were members of Fuwanovel, and contenders in the death game that had started previously that day. But, neither of them wanted to kill their fellow members, and as a result, they had formed a team.
    Shortly after they teamed up, however, they were attacked by giant monsters that seemed to live in the depths of the forest. Hungry and tired, the four of them had finally reached a seemingly peaceful area, and were setting up camp with what little resources they had.
    The four members were Sayaka (#28), Norleas (#9), Shikomizue (#13) and Kiriririri (#6).
    Shikomizue was the natural leader type, and had taken the lead of the group as a result, something that did not sit well with Sayaka.
    “Why do I have to listen to your orders, huh? I’m tired too! I want to sleep just as much as the next guy!”
    “Look, I don’t mean to be rude here, but in terms of actual combat abilities, me and #9 are the strongest. We need our rest, so that we can protect this group when the time comes. You and #6 are… Well you know.”
    Shikomizue gestured towards Kiriririri, a small girl with silver hair, who was poking the ground with a wooden stick, paying no mind to the conversation that was happening around her. So far, she had not participated in the fighting at all.
    “Okay, I’ll give you her, but we’re not that crazy! Master and I helped you in the fight against those… Those things, didn’t we?!”
    Sayaka pointed in the direction they had come from, where the group had fought against numerous strange beasts.
    Shikomizue scratched his head awkwardly in response. He did not want the group to start fighting among each other, as that would just make things worse. He wanted to figure out what was going on, and how to get out of it. In order to do that, he needed to get as many people as possible to form a team. If no one killed each other, the “game” or whatever it was, had to come to a stop. That was the conclusion he had reached.
    “Fine, I’ll take the first shift, along with… Her.”
    Shikomizue looked towards Kiriririri, who had just finished drawing a strange symbol in the grass.
    “Alright then, let’s get that fire going and—”
    “Get down, something is coming.”
    Norleas reached behind his back and fished out the two daggers he was storing in his jacket, then crouched down, signaling for the others to do the same.
    The group gathered together, and those who had them drew their weapons.
    “What did you see?”
    Shikomizue did not have to wait for a response, as a large bear, covered in metal plating, walked past them. It was looking around, like it was searching for the group. It looked… Off. It looked intelligent, just like the other beasts they had fought that day.
    “Something is definitely not right with these things. They started attacking us right after we formed a team. Almost like… Someone doesn’t want us to team up.”
    Shikomizue thought to himself, as he recalled the days events. Actually, every time they had been away for combat for a certain period of time, something would come and attack them.
    Almost like something, or someone, were controlling them. If that was the case, then...
    “Master, behind you!”
    Sayaka shouted to himself, and jumped forward. In the next second, a large paw covered in metal slammed down on the very spot Sayaka had been standing.
    Reaching into his maid uniform, Sayaka fished out a strange statue, in the shape of an anime figure.
    “They know we’re here master, so we might as well make some noise.”
    Turning the head of the statue around 180 degrees, Sayaka threw it behind the tree, where the second bear had attacked from.
    “Everyone, if you don’t want to go boom, I suggest you run!”
    Moments later, the figure exploded, turning the ground beneath it to ash, blowing the bear to bits in the process.
    The other bear was alerted to their presence, and jumped at Norleas, who slashed at its snout with his daggers before it had time to react. The beast roared in pain, and slammed its massive paw towards Norleas, who elegantly jumped out of the paws path, and went in for another attack.
    While the plate armor proved to be an obstacle, Norleas still managed to bring the massive beast down in a matter of seconds, as a flurry of dagger cuts tore into its hide like it was butter, always finding the unprotected parts of the bears body.

    Meanwhile, Shikomizue was fending of two wolves with his wakizashi katanas, holding back one wolf with each blade, as he pressed them against the wolves sharp fangs.
    “Where is #6? Someone cover her.”
    “Yes, yes, Master and I got her, don’t worry.”
    Throwing explosive statues at everything that moved inside the forest, Sayaka jumped around Kiriririri, who was sitting on the ground, watching the fighting happen around her with an indifferent expression.
    “Ohh, we’re gonna make master so proud, yes we are, tralala.”
    Sayaka sang as he looked up at the sky, throwing statues now seemingly at random. A few landed close to Norleas, but he simply moved out of their path with incredible speed each time, still slashing and stabbing any beast that came in his way with his daggers.
     
    The group fended off countless beasts, until finally, only one remained. It was a massive tiger, also covered in metal plating like the bears from before. The beast’s eyes were glowing in a strange blue light, and it moved faster than any other creature they had fought so far.
    Sayaka had tried throwing several statues at it, but it always got out of the blast zone before it was damaged.
    Norleas was unable to get close to the beast as well, as it was simply too fast.
    Shikomizue knew they were out of options.
    “Tch… Is this really how it ends?”
    He clicked his tongue, and started to walk towards the beast while he shook his head.
    “Am I really doing this?”
    After glancing over his shoulder, taking another look at his three teammates, Shikomizue nodded, and closed his eyes.
    “Listen up. I know what’s going on. These things are being controlled by someone. As long as we’re in a group, we’ll be sitting ducks. They are either being controlled by whoever started this fucked up game... Someone who wants us to keep fighting, or it’s another contender, in which case we should split up to try and find the bastard.
    So...  Guys, split up. Run. For now, just get as far away from each other as possible.”
    “GRAAWRH!”
    Like it understood what Shikomizue was saying, the tiger roared, and charged at the group. It was not happy.
    “Yes come on, you stupid cat.”
    Shikomizue charged as well, running straight ahead, towards the beast’s fangs.
    Then…
    “GUAAH!”
    Shikomizue screamed in pain, as the tiger bit him, its large fangs digging into his left side.
    “I’ll keep this thing at bay… You guys… Run away… Now!”
    Lifting up his free arm, Shikomizue gripped his katana firmly, and slashed at the tiger’s front legs, which were not covered by armor. That should slow it down. The thing was, it would have been impossible to target its legs without making it stop first. And, the only way to do that was to make it stop moving, for instance, by letting it bite one of them. Shikomizue had realized this a while ago, as he watched his comrades fail to hit the beast, and he had given his own life so that the other three could live.
    “You guys better figure out what the fuck is going on here, and stop this ‘game’, alright?”
    Shikomizue looked over his shoulder, watching as his allies ran into different directions. No beasts chased them.
    Pleased that he his plan had worked, Shikomizue fished out a cigarette from pocket, and moved it to his mouth, his hand shaking. He didn’t have anything to light it with, but he still put it in his mouth, and took a deep breath, closing his eyes.
    That was his last breath.
         
     
    Norleas walked through the forest in silence. His daggers were still dripping with blood from the countless monsters he had killed. Still, he had not even broken a sweat. Killing was his job, after all. It was a breath of fresh air for him to kill beasts instead of people.
    It was strange. The person whose job was to take people’s lives had chosen to join an alliance to avoid killing others.
    It was different this time, after all. The people in question were his friends. His fellow Fuwanovel users. There was no way he could kill them.
    Sensing something moving behind him, Norleas gripped his dagger, and prepared for battle. But…
    “Oh, it’s just you.”
    He lowered his weapons. Behind him stood the strange girl from before, Kiriririri.
    “What, didn’t you hear what the boss said? We’re supposed to split up. What, are you scared in the dark by yourself?”
    Kiriririri didn't’ say anything. She simply lifted her arm, pointing into the darkness behind Norleas.
    “What? What is… It…”
    Norleas turned around to look at what she was pointing at, and suddenly felt a sharp pain in his abdomen. Looking down at his own stomach, he saw a silvery blade sticking out from his chest, covered in fresh blood.
    “Wh-What…”
    “Hehe.”
    The laughter of a little girl was the last thing he heard, as his lifeless body fell to the floor.
    Kiriririri pulled the sword out of Norleas’ corpse, and it soon turned into light particles, vanishing into thin air.
    Kiriririri then simply kept walking through the forest with an emotionless expression.

     
     
     
    Kiriririri: Status = Alive
    Sayaka: Status = Alive



     
    Wildcards This Week?
    None
     
    Dead This Week:
    Still Alive:
     
  5. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Kaguya for a blog entry, Fuwa Battle Royale - Week 1 -   
    Fuwanovel Battle Royale - Volume 2 -
    Chapter 1: The Beginning
     
    <??> Watched the screen in front of <him/her?> intently. Everything was ready. The time had finally come. All that planning, all that preparation. It had all been for this moment.
    “All the pieces are in place. Well then, let’s start the game, shall we?”
    <??> Pressed the button before <him/her?> with a wicked smile.
    “Hear me, members of Fuwanovel. You are here for a single purpose; to entertain me! Those who have their name announced over these broadcasts shall enter the arena, and fight to the death! Anyone and anything you see out in the arenas will be an enemy, so be careful… And ruthless. As far as the rules go… There are none, heh.
    Good luck.”
     
    Day 1:
    Members in this chapter:

    “The game has begun. Good luck.”
    “‘Alright, time to hunt.” Ranzo jumped down from the platform he was standing on, numbered ‘11’. He had woken up inside an unfamiliar room just moments before, where he had found his suit and weapons. After a short, confusing briefing from the person in charge, Ranzo’s <cell?> had opened, and he could walk out. What greeted him was a massive forest, full of large trees towering high above him. The large trees blocked out almost all the sunlight, making it hard for Ranzo to see where he was going. But, it was either straight ahead, or back to the cell, so Ranzo chose to keep walking.
    The “briefing” had been simple. “You are stuck here. You are to fight anything and anyone you come across. If you are the last alive after the game is over, you win. If you die, you lose.”
    “Gee, really? If I die, I lose? That’s a shocker.” Ranzo spun his scythe around his body with precision while he walked, clearly used to handling the weapon. A sabre hung from his waist in a makeshift sheathe, crafted from his belt.
    After having advanced through the forest for a good ten minutes, Ranzo reached a suspicious looking cave, marked with a number— “7”.
    “Hm, another contender?” Ranzo whispered, and gripped the handle of his scythe firmly while he scanned his surroundings. If his hunch was right, the numbers represented contenders in the “game”. He was 11, and “7” was a different Fuwanovel user, also entered in the game.
    Crack.
    Ranzo spun around instinctively at the sound of a branch breaking behind him, and in the same motion, he threw his scythe forwards. The sound of metal colliding with metal made Ranzo flinch for a brief second, and he lost sight of the person who had knocked his scythe out of the air.
    “Tch.” Ranzo gripped his sabre and chased the mystery person, like a wolf rushing towards a sheep. He had no plan. The only thing going through his head was: kill it. Whoever or whatever it was; kill it.
     
    Meanwhile
    SeniorBlitz ran as fast as he could through the forest, like he had the grim reaper himself on his heels. That was in fact what Senior had thought for a second when he saw the scythe fly towards him just moments before. Senior was not well versed in any kind of combat. He had, in fact, never been in a fight in his entire life. What he did have, however, was a special ability. The ability to know what to do, where to go. He couldn’t explain it well, but there was something guiding him at all times. If he was about to trip and fall, something in his mind would tell him to stop. If he ever got lost, something would guide him back home, even if he had no idea where he was. It was thanks to that power, that guide, that Senior was still alive. He had seen the scythe coming seconds before it was thrown, and had used the sword that was given to him at the start of the game to block its path. He had sadly dropped the sword in his escape, and was therefore now unarmed.
    “Stop running my friend, I wish you no harm!”
    His attacker was shouting at Senior from behind. Thanks to his ability, Senior knew that he would be able to shake off his tail if he just kept following the path laid out in his mind. He did not look back, he did not falter.
    “Tch, you little… How long do you plan on running for?”
    “I’ll catch you eventually you little slime! Just you wait, I’m coming for you!”
    The voice of his attacker grew distant, as Senior just kept on running through the forest. Before long, he had completely shaken off the madman running after him.
    “Haah, haah, haah…” Senior finally had the opportunity to stop for a breath. With his hands on his knees, he spent a few minutes calming down. He knew that the man behind him would not be able to find him for at least another ten minutes, thanks to his ability.
    “Alright, time to find a better place to hide.”
    Senior got back up, and started walking through the dense forest, looking for shelter. He figured it would be smart to find someplace safe to gather his thoughts. It would be best to do so before nightfall, so he started walking faster, following the path lit up in his mind.
    “Just about another hundred meters this way, and— Huh?!”
    “GRAARGH!”
    Senior was so focused on following the path to “safety”, he paid no mind to his surroundings, and did not notice the strange creature approaching from his left. Whatever it was, its massive jaw closed around Senior’s chest, and he was lifted up into the air and shook brutally back and forth, the sharp teeth of the beast ripping his flesh apart with each movement.
    “GYAAAAH!”
    Senior let out a primal scream, and tried to punch the creature with his free arm, but it was no use.
    The beast’s iron jaw remained closed, and the life soon drained from Senior’s body, as most of his organs and blood poured down onto the grass below him. His entire torso had been ripped to bits, and what was left of him was soon devoured by the beast, leaving only pools of blood and a few chunks of flesh behind.
     
     
    About an hour later, Ranzo arrived at the scene of Senior’s death. Taking one look at the pool of blood and gore, Ranzo clicked his tongue, and turned back.
    “Guess someone got to him before me. Oh well, time to look for the next guy, I guess.”
    Whistling a song to himself, Ranzo spun his scythe around, matching the song’s rhythm as he walked back into the depths of the forest, looking for new prey to hunt.
     

    Elsewhere:
    Arcadeotic sat at the end of a cliff, looking at the waterfall below him with a emotionless expression, balancing a katana on his feet. A single sudden motion would surely send the sword tumbling down the fifty meter long drop.
    Arcadeotic was wearing a blue yukata, stained red with the blood of a pack of wild boars he had killed an hour ago. After cooking some of their meat on a fire, he had eaten some for himself, then tossed the rest down into the abyss. He had no intentions of sharing the meat with anyone else, nor did he want the smell of the meat to attract possible predators. He had extinguished the fire as soon as he was done cooking the meat, but it might still have notified someone of his location. Nevertheless, Arcadeotic sat completely still on the cliff, staring out into nothingness.
    Sure enough, after another few minutes, the sound of footsteps could be heard behind him.
    Still, Arcadeotic remaind motionless, not facing his attacker.
     
    Sneaking up behind him was Thatcomicguy, clutching his spear with his right hand. In his free arm was a wooden shield, covered in thick leather. Other than his weapons, Thatcomicguy was completely naked, though his body was covered in blue war paint.
    Thatcomicguy snuck up to Arcadeotic until he was a mere two meters away, then stabbed at Arcadeotic’s back with his spear. Right before the spear hit Arcadeotic’s back, he jumped straight up into the air, grabbed his katana, and in the same motion as he drew it from its sheath, he cut at Thatcomicguy’s chest.
    Thatcomicguy barely had time to block the slice with his shield, and was forced back a few steps from the impact.
    Meanwhile, Arcadeotic landed gracefully on the edge of the cliff, and quickly moved in for another attack, cutting at Thatcomicguy’s left foot.
    Arcadeotic closed the distance between them in a second, and mercilessly sliced a deep cut in Thatcomicguy’s calf.
    “Ugh…”
    Thatcomicguy groaned in pain, and pushed his shield forward defensively, hitting Arcadeotic in the chest.
    Arcadeotic fell backwards, but quickly regained his balance.
    For the first time in the fight, Arcadeotic glanced at his opponent, and chuckled.
    “You look ridiculous.”
    Thatcomicguy paid him no mind, and tried to focus on his plan of attack. He should have the upper hand, even with the cut on his leg, as he had the longest reach thanks to his spear, and a shield to block the katana’s slashes. The leather on his shield had taken a hit already, and was already starting to come apart. It probably wouldn’t last too long.
    Seemingly having come up with a plan, Thatcomicguy stepped forward. Although the pain in his leg was nothing to joke about, he did not let it stop him.
    “Yeah, well, we’ll see who gets the last laugh.”
    Keeping just enough distance between himself and his opponent, so that the katana would not be able to reach him, Thatcomicguy thrust his spear towards Arcadeotic. Arcadeotic easily deflected the thrust, but as he was about to counterattack, Thatcomicguy swiftly changed his grip, turning his spear downwards towards Arcadeotic leg, and dug the tip of his spear into Arcadeotic’s knee. Arcadeotic winced in response, but didn’t let the pain stop him from fighting. Not wasting any time, Arcadeotic slashed two times, but both attacks were blocked by Thatcomicguy’s pesky shield.
    “Tch.”
    It became impossible for Arcadeotic to stand on his wounded leg, which meant he would be at an even bigger disadvantage than before. His strongest point was his speed, but without his full mobility, he would be unable to close the distance between himself and his opponent fast enough to stop the spear from keeping him at bay.
    “... An eye for an eye, huh?”
    Arcadeotic said to himself, as he tried to come up with a way out of the dire situation. He had cut his opponent’s leg, but in return, his own knee had been damaged. Both of them were less mobile, but it seemed like his own injury was a bit more serious.
    “Well, what can you do.”
    Arcadeotic walked forward with awkward steps, his wounded leg mostly just being dragged along the ground.
    “I’ll end this with one strike.”
    The bold statement from Arcadeotic made Thatcomicguy snicker.
    “Oh, is that so? Well by all means, come at me.”
    Thatcomicguy spat back, readied his spear, and covered his chest with his shield. There was no way Arcadeotic would be able to attack his opponent’s torso. And yet…
    “Hmph!”
    With a grunt, Arcadeotic jumped forward, and with all his might, he slammed the flat side of his sword into the wooden shield. The impact made Thatcomicguy stagger, and he let out a painful groan as he put all his weight on his wounded leg.
    Still in the air, Arcadeotic slashed downwards. His sword moved along the rough leather covering the wooden shield, until it reached Thatcomicguy’s exposed shoulder. The sharp blade slashed open the naked shoulder, making Thatcomicguy drop his shield. Unfortunately for Arcadeotic, he was unable to brace himself properly after the attack, and he crashed into the ground, dropping his katana. The air was knocked out of him as his chest collided with the rough ground. But, he wasn’t done there. Although the world around him was spinning, he used his healthy leg to kick violently at Thatcomicguy’s wounded foot.
    “Guaaah!”
    Thatcomicguy screamed, as he too fell to the ground, paralyzed by pain.
    Crawling towards his katana, Arcadeotic was ready to deliver the finishing blow. He gripped the hilt of his weapon, and turned towards his fallen enemy. Although every part of his body hurt, Arcadeotic somehow managed to stand, and moved towards his prey with clumsy movements.
    “Hya!”
    As he reached his target, he brought his katana above his shoulder, and slashed mercilessly at Thatcomicguy's neck.
    Clink.
    The sound of something breaking made Arcadeotic look at his sword in confusion. The katana’s blade had snapped in half, most likely a result from his fall. And since the blade had broken mid swing, he had not actually hit his opponent.
    “Well, shi—”
    Before Arcadeotic could finish his sentence, the tip of a spear dug into his throat, making a spray of fresh blood shoot out from the wound, dying Thatcomicguy’s skin in red.
    As Arcadeotic’s dead body hit the floor, Thatcomicguy dropped his spear, as the strength began to leave his body.
    “You… Tough bastard…”
    With those words, he passed out.
     

     
    Meanwhile, at the outskirts of the forest:

     
    “How’s this place?”
    “Hmm, looks good. We’ll camp here for now. Someone start a fire.”
    “Ugh, do you think there are any more of those things out there? I’m not sure I’m comfortable sleeping here, out in the open…”
    “Don’t worry, we’ll take shifts keeping guard. #28, #6, you two take the first shift.”
    “Huh? Who died and made you the boss?”
    Four figures, covered in mud and blood, were talking under the cover of a giant tree, just half a kilometer from the edge of the forest. The four of them were members of Fuwanovel, and contenders in the death game that had started previously that day. But, neither of them wanted to kill their fellow members, and as a result, they had formed a team.
    Shortly after they teamed up, however, they were attacked by giant monsters that seemed to live in the depths of the forest. Hungry and tired, the four of them had finally reached a seemingly peaceful area, and were setting up camp with what little resources they had.
    The four members were Sayaka (#28), Norleas (#9), Shikomizue (#13) and Kiriririri (#6).
    Shikomizue was the natural leader type, and had taken the lead of the group as a result, something that did not sit well with Sayaka.
    “Why do I have to listen to your orders, huh? I’m tired too! I want to sleep just as much as the next guy!”
    “Look, I don’t mean to be rude here, but in terms of actual combat abilities, me and #9 are the strongest. We need our rest, so that we can protect this group when the time comes. You and #6 are… Well you know.”
    Shikomizue gestured towards Kiriririri, a small girl with silver hair, who was poking the ground with a wooden stick, paying no mind to the conversation that was happening around her. So far, she had not participated in the fighting at all.
    “Okay, I’ll give you her, but we’re not that crazy! Master and I helped you in the fight against those… Those things, didn’t we?!”
    Sayaka pointed in the direction they had come from, where the group had fought against numerous strange beasts.
    Shikomizue scratched his head awkwardly in response. He did not want the group to start fighting among each other, as that would just make things worse. He wanted to figure out what was going on, and how to get out of it. In order to do that, he needed to get as many people as possible to form a team. If no one killed each other, the “game” or whatever it was, had to come to a stop. That was the conclusion he had reached.
    “Fine, I’ll take the first shift, along with… Her.”
    Shikomizue looked towards Kiriririri, who had just finished drawing a strange symbol in the grass.
    “Alright then, let’s get that fire going and—”
    “Get down, something is coming.”
    Norleas reached behind his back and fished out the two daggers he was storing in his jacket, then crouched down, signaling for the others to do the same.
    The group gathered together, and those who had them drew their weapons.
    “What did you see?”
    Shikomizue did not have to wait for a response, as a large bear, covered in metal plating, walked past them. It was looking around, like it was searching for the group. It looked… Off. It looked intelligent, just like the other beasts they had fought that day.
    “Something is definitely not right with these things. They started attacking us right after we formed a team. Almost like… Someone doesn’t want us to team up.”
    Shikomizue thought to himself, as he recalled the days events. Actually, every time they had been away for combat for a certain period of time, something would come and attack them.
    Almost like something, or someone, were controlling them. If that was the case, then...
    “Master, behind you!”
    Sayaka shouted to himself, and jumped forward. In the next second, a large paw covered in metal slammed down on the very spot Sayaka had been standing.
    Reaching into his maid uniform, Sayaka fished out a strange statue, in the shape of an anime figure.
    “They know we’re here master, so we might as well make some noise.”
    Turning the head of the statue around 180 degrees, Sayaka threw it behind the tree, where the second bear had attacked from.
    “Everyone, if you don’t want to go boom, I suggest you run!”
    Moments later, the figure exploded, turning the ground beneath it to ash, blowing the bear to bits in the process.
    The other bear was alerted to their presence, and jumped at Norleas, who slashed at its snout with his daggers before it had time to react. The beast roared in pain, and slammed its massive paw towards Norleas, who elegantly jumped out of the paws path, and went in for another attack.
    While the plate armor proved to be an obstacle, Norleas still managed to bring the massive beast down in a matter of seconds, as a flurry of dagger cuts tore into its hide like it was butter, always finding the unprotected parts of the bears body.

    Meanwhile, Shikomizue was fending of two wolves with his wakizashi katanas, holding back one wolf with each blade, as he pressed them against the wolves sharp fangs.
    “Where is #6? Someone cover her.”
    “Yes, yes, Master and I got her, don’t worry.”
    Throwing explosive statues at everything that moved inside the forest, Sayaka jumped around Kiriririri, who was sitting on the ground, watching the fighting happen around her with an indifferent expression.
    “Ohh, we’re gonna make master so proud, yes we are, tralala.”
    Sayaka sang as he looked up at the sky, throwing statues now seemingly at random. A few landed close to Norleas, but he simply moved out of their path with incredible speed each time, still slashing and stabbing any beast that came in his way with his daggers.
     
    The group fended off countless beasts, until finally, only one remained. It was a massive tiger, also covered in metal plating like the bears from before. The beast’s eyes were glowing in a strange blue light, and it moved faster than any other creature they had fought so far.
    Sayaka had tried throwing several statues at it, but it always got out of the blast zone before it was damaged.
    Norleas was unable to get close to the beast as well, as it was simply too fast.
    Shikomizue knew they were out of options.
    “Tch… Is this really how it ends?”
    He clicked his tongue, and started to walk towards the beast while he shook his head.
    “Am I really doing this?”
    After glancing over his shoulder, taking another look at his three teammates, Shikomizue nodded, and closed his eyes.
    “Listen up. I know what’s going on. These things are being controlled by someone. As long as we’re in a group, we’ll be sitting ducks. They are either being controlled by whoever started this fucked up game... Someone who wants us to keep fighting, or it’s another contender, in which case we should split up to try and find the bastard.
    So...  Guys, split up. Run. For now, just get as far away from each other as possible.”
    “GRAAWRH!”
    Like it understood what Shikomizue was saying, the tiger roared, and charged at the group. It was not happy.
    “Yes come on, you stupid cat.”
    Shikomizue charged as well, running straight ahead, towards the beast’s fangs.
    Then…
    “GUAAH!”
    Shikomizue screamed in pain, as the tiger bit him, its large fangs digging into his left side.
    “I’ll keep this thing at bay… You guys… Run away… Now!”
    Lifting up his free arm, Shikomizue gripped his katana firmly, and slashed at the tiger’s front legs, which were not covered by armor. That should slow it down. The thing was, it would have been impossible to target its legs without making it stop first. And, the only way to do that was to make it stop moving, for instance, by letting it bite one of them. Shikomizue had realized this a while ago, as he watched his comrades fail to hit the beast, and he had given his own life so that the other three could live.
    “You guys better figure out what the fuck is going on here, and stop this ‘game’, alright?”
    Shikomizue looked over his shoulder, watching as his allies ran into different directions. No beasts chased them.
    Pleased that he his plan had worked, Shikomizue fished out a cigarette from pocket, and moved it to his mouth, his hand shaking. He didn’t have anything to light it with, but he still put it in his mouth, and took a deep breath, closing his eyes.
    That was his last breath.
         
     
    Norleas walked through the forest in silence. His daggers were still dripping with blood from the countless monsters he had killed. Still, he had not even broken a sweat. Killing was his job, after all. It was a breath of fresh air for him to kill beasts instead of people.
    It was strange. The person whose job was to take people’s lives had chosen to join an alliance to avoid killing others.
    It was different this time, after all. The people in question were his friends. His fellow Fuwanovel users. There was no way he could kill them.
    Sensing something moving behind him, Norleas gripped his dagger, and prepared for battle. But…
    “Oh, it’s just you.”
    He lowered his weapons. Behind him stood the strange girl from before, Kiriririri.
    “What, didn’t you hear what the boss said? We’re supposed to split up. What, are you scared in the dark by yourself?”
    Kiriririri didn't’ say anything. She simply lifted her arm, pointing into the darkness behind Norleas.
    “What? What is… It…”
    Norleas turned around to look at what she was pointing at, and suddenly felt a sharp pain in his abdomen. Looking down at his own stomach, he saw a silvery blade sticking out from his chest, covered in fresh blood.
    “Wh-What…”
    “Hehe.”
    The laughter of a little girl was the last thing he heard, as his lifeless body fell to the floor.
    Kiriririri pulled the sword out of Norleas’ corpse, and it soon turned into light particles, vanishing into thin air.
    Kiriririri then simply kept walking through the forest with an emotionless expression.

     
     
     
    Kiriririri: Status = Alive
    Sayaka: Status = Alive



     
    Wildcards This Week?
    None
     
    Dead This Week:
    Still Alive:
     
  6. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Shikomizue for a blog entry, Fuwa Battle Royale - Week 1 -   
    Fuwanovel Battle Royale - Volume 2 -
    Chapter 1: The Beginning
     
    <??> Watched the screen in front of <him/her?> intently. Everything was ready. The time had finally come. All that planning, all that preparation. It had all been for this moment.
    “All the pieces are in place. Well then, let’s start the game, shall we?”
    <??> Pressed the button before <him/her?> with a wicked smile.
    “Hear me, members of Fuwanovel. You are here for a single purpose; to entertain me! Those who have their name announced over these broadcasts shall enter the arena, and fight to the death! Anyone and anything you see out in the arenas will be an enemy, so be careful… And ruthless. As far as the rules go… There are none, heh.
    Good luck.”
     
    Day 1:
    Members in this chapter:

    “The game has begun. Good luck.”
    “‘Alright, time to hunt.” Ranzo jumped down from the platform he was standing on, numbered ‘11’. He had woken up inside an unfamiliar room just moments before, where he had found his suit and weapons. After a short, confusing briefing from the person in charge, Ranzo’s <cell?> had opened, and he could walk out. What greeted him was a massive forest, full of large trees towering high above him. The large trees blocked out almost all the sunlight, making it hard for Ranzo to see where he was going. But, it was either straight ahead, or back to the cell, so Ranzo chose to keep walking.
    The “briefing” had been simple. “You are stuck here. You are to fight anything and anyone you come across. If you are the last alive after the game is over, you win. If you die, you lose.”
    “Gee, really? If I die, I lose? That’s a shocker.” Ranzo spun his scythe around his body with precision while he walked, clearly used to handling the weapon. A sabre hung from his waist in a makeshift sheathe, crafted from his belt.
    After having advanced through the forest for a good ten minutes, Ranzo reached a suspicious looking cave, marked with a number— “7”.
    “Hm, another contender?” Ranzo whispered, and gripped the handle of his scythe firmly while he scanned his surroundings. If his hunch was right, the numbers represented contenders in the “game”. He was 11, and “7” was a different Fuwanovel user, also entered in the game.
    Crack.
    Ranzo spun around instinctively at the sound of a branch breaking behind him, and in the same motion, he threw his scythe forwards. The sound of metal colliding with metal made Ranzo flinch for a brief second, and he lost sight of the person who had knocked his scythe out of the air.
    “Tch.” Ranzo gripped his sabre and chased the mystery person, like a wolf rushing towards a sheep. He had no plan. The only thing going through his head was: kill it. Whoever or whatever it was; kill it.
     
    Meanwhile
    SeniorBlitz ran as fast as he could through the forest, like he had the grim reaper himself on his heels. That was in fact what Senior had thought for a second when he saw the scythe fly towards him just moments before. Senior was not well versed in any kind of combat. He had, in fact, never been in a fight in his entire life. What he did have, however, was a special ability. The ability to know what to do, where to go. He couldn’t explain it well, but there was something guiding him at all times. If he was about to trip and fall, something in his mind would tell him to stop. If he ever got lost, something would guide him back home, even if he had no idea where he was. It was thanks to that power, that guide, that Senior was still alive. He had seen the scythe coming seconds before it was thrown, and had used the sword that was given to him at the start of the game to block its path. He had sadly dropped the sword in his escape, and was therefore now unarmed.
    “Stop running my friend, I wish you no harm!”
    His attacker was shouting at Senior from behind. Thanks to his ability, Senior knew that he would be able to shake off his tail if he just kept following the path laid out in his mind. He did not look back, he did not falter.
    “Tch, you little… How long do you plan on running for?”
    “I’ll catch you eventually you little slime! Just you wait, I’m coming for you!”
    The voice of his attacker grew distant, as Senior just kept on running through the forest. Before long, he had completely shaken off the madman running after him.
    “Haah, haah, haah…” Senior finally had the opportunity to stop for a breath. With his hands on his knees, he spent a few minutes calming down. He knew that the man behind him would not be able to find him for at least another ten minutes, thanks to his ability.
    “Alright, time to find a better place to hide.”
    Senior got back up, and started walking through the dense forest, looking for shelter. He figured it would be smart to find someplace safe to gather his thoughts. It would be best to do so before nightfall, so he started walking faster, following the path lit up in his mind.
    “Just about another hundred meters this way, and— Huh?!”
    “GRAARGH!”
    Senior was so focused on following the path to “safety”, he paid no mind to his surroundings, and did not notice the strange creature approaching from his left. Whatever it was, its massive jaw closed around Senior’s chest, and he was lifted up into the air and shook brutally back and forth, the sharp teeth of the beast ripping his flesh apart with each movement.
    “GYAAAAH!”
    Senior let out a primal scream, and tried to punch the creature with his free arm, but it was no use.
    The beast’s iron jaw remained closed, and the life soon drained from Senior’s body, as most of his organs and blood poured down onto the grass below him. His entire torso had been ripped to bits, and what was left of him was soon devoured by the beast, leaving only pools of blood and a few chunks of flesh behind.
     
     
    About an hour later, Ranzo arrived at the scene of Senior’s death. Taking one look at the pool of blood and gore, Ranzo clicked his tongue, and turned back.
    “Guess someone got to him before me. Oh well, time to look for the next guy, I guess.”
    Whistling a song to himself, Ranzo spun his scythe around, matching the song’s rhythm as he walked back into the depths of the forest, looking for new prey to hunt.
     

    Elsewhere:
    Arcadeotic sat at the end of a cliff, looking at the waterfall below him with a emotionless expression, balancing a katana on his feet. A single sudden motion would surely send the sword tumbling down the fifty meter long drop.
    Arcadeotic was wearing a blue yukata, stained red with the blood of a pack of wild boars he had killed an hour ago. After cooking some of their meat on a fire, he had eaten some for himself, then tossed the rest down into the abyss. He had no intentions of sharing the meat with anyone else, nor did he want the smell of the meat to attract possible predators. He had extinguished the fire as soon as he was done cooking the meat, but it might still have notified someone of his location. Nevertheless, Arcadeotic sat completely still on the cliff, staring out into nothingness.
    Sure enough, after another few minutes, the sound of footsteps could be heard behind him.
    Still, Arcadeotic remaind motionless, not facing his attacker.
     
    Sneaking up behind him was Thatcomicguy, clutching his spear with his right hand. In his free arm was a wooden shield, covered in thick leather. Other than his weapons, Thatcomicguy was completely naked, though his body was covered in blue war paint.
    Thatcomicguy snuck up to Arcadeotic until he was a mere two meters away, then stabbed at Arcadeotic’s back with his spear. Right before the spear hit Arcadeotic’s back, he jumped straight up into the air, grabbed his katana, and in the same motion as he drew it from its sheath, he cut at Thatcomicguy’s chest.
    Thatcomicguy barely had time to block the slice with his shield, and was forced back a few steps from the impact.
    Meanwhile, Arcadeotic landed gracefully on the edge of the cliff, and quickly moved in for another attack, cutting at Thatcomicguy’s left foot.
    Arcadeotic closed the distance between them in a second, and mercilessly sliced a deep cut in Thatcomicguy’s calf.
    “Ugh…”
    Thatcomicguy groaned in pain, and pushed his shield forward defensively, hitting Arcadeotic in the chest.
    Arcadeotic fell backwards, but quickly regained his balance.
    For the first time in the fight, Arcadeotic glanced at his opponent, and chuckled.
    “You look ridiculous.”
    Thatcomicguy paid him no mind, and tried to focus on his plan of attack. He should have the upper hand, even with the cut on his leg, as he had the longest reach thanks to his spear, and a shield to block the katana’s slashes. The leather on his shield had taken a hit already, and was already starting to come apart. It probably wouldn’t last too long.
    Seemingly having come up with a plan, Thatcomicguy stepped forward. Although the pain in his leg was nothing to joke about, he did not let it stop him.
    “Yeah, well, we’ll see who gets the last laugh.”
    Keeping just enough distance between himself and his opponent, so that the katana would not be able to reach him, Thatcomicguy thrust his spear towards Arcadeotic. Arcadeotic easily deflected the thrust, but as he was about to counterattack, Thatcomicguy swiftly changed his grip, turning his spear downwards towards Arcadeotic leg, and dug the tip of his spear into Arcadeotic’s knee. Arcadeotic winced in response, but didn’t let the pain stop him from fighting. Not wasting any time, Arcadeotic slashed two times, but both attacks were blocked by Thatcomicguy’s pesky shield.
    “Tch.”
    It became impossible for Arcadeotic to stand on his wounded leg, which meant he would be at an even bigger disadvantage than before. His strongest point was his speed, but without his full mobility, he would be unable to close the distance between himself and his opponent fast enough to stop the spear from keeping him at bay.
    “... An eye for an eye, huh?”
    Arcadeotic said to himself, as he tried to come up with a way out of the dire situation. He had cut his opponent’s leg, but in return, his own knee had been damaged. Both of them were less mobile, but it seemed like his own injury was a bit more serious.
    “Well, what can you do.”
    Arcadeotic walked forward with awkward steps, his wounded leg mostly just being dragged along the ground.
    “I’ll end this with one strike.”
    The bold statement from Arcadeotic made Thatcomicguy snicker.
    “Oh, is that so? Well by all means, come at me.”
    Thatcomicguy spat back, readied his spear, and covered his chest with his shield. There was no way Arcadeotic would be able to attack his opponent’s torso. And yet…
    “Hmph!”
    With a grunt, Arcadeotic jumped forward, and with all his might, he slammed the flat side of his sword into the wooden shield. The impact made Thatcomicguy stagger, and he let out a painful groan as he put all his weight on his wounded leg.
    Still in the air, Arcadeotic slashed downwards. His sword moved along the rough leather covering the wooden shield, until it reached Thatcomicguy’s exposed shoulder. The sharp blade slashed open the naked shoulder, making Thatcomicguy drop his shield. Unfortunately for Arcadeotic, he was unable to brace himself properly after the attack, and he crashed into the ground, dropping his katana. The air was knocked out of him as his chest collided with the rough ground. But, he wasn’t done there. Although the world around him was spinning, he used his healthy leg to kick violently at Thatcomicguy’s wounded foot.
    “Guaaah!”
    Thatcomicguy screamed, as he too fell to the ground, paralyzed by pain.
    Crawling towards his katana, Arcadeotic was ready to deliver the finishing blow. He gripped the hilt of his weapon, and turned towards his fallen enemy. Although every part of his body hurt, Arcadeotic somehow managed to stand, and moved towards his prey with clumsy movements.
    “Hya!”
    As he reached his target, he brought his katana above his shoulder, and slashed mercilessly at Thatcomicguy's neck.
    Clink.
    The sound of something breaking made Arcadeotic look at his sword in confusion. The katana’s blade had snapped in half, most likely a result from his fall. And since the blade had broken mid swing, he had not actually hit his opponent.
    “Well, shi—”
    Before Arcadeotic could finish his sentence, the tip of a spear dug into his throat, making a spray of fresh blood shoot out from the wound, dying Thatcomicguy’s skin in red.
    As Arcadeotic’s dead body hit the floor, Thatcomicguy dropped his spear, as the strength began to leave his body.
    “You… Tough bastard…”
    With those words, he passed out.
     

     
    Meanwhile, at the outskirts of the forest:

     
    “How’s this place?”
    “Hmm, looks good. We’ll camp here for now. Someone start a fire.”
    “Ugh, do you think there are any more of those things out there? I’m not sure I’m comfortable sleeping here, out in the open…”
    “Don’t worry, we’ll take shifts keeping guard. #28, #6, you two take the first shift.”
    “Huh? Who died and made you the boss?”
    Four figures, covered in mud and blood, were talking under the cover of a giant tree, just half a kilometer from the edge of the forest. The four of them were members of Fuwanovel, and contenders in the death game that had started previously that day. But, neither of them wanted to kill their fellow members, and as a result, they had formed a team.
    Shortly after they teamed up, however, they were attacked by giant monsters that seemed to live in the depths of the forest. Hungry and tired, the four of them had finally reached a seemingly peaceful area, and were setting up camp with what little resources they had.
    The four members were Sayaka (#28), Norleas (#9), Shikomizue (#13) and Kiriririri (#6).
    Shikomizue was the natural leader type, and had taken the lead of the group as a result, something that did not sit well with Sayaka.
    “Why do I have to listen to your orders, huh? I’m tired too! I want to sleep just as much as the next guy!”
    “Look, I don’t mean to be rude here, but in terms of actual combat abilities, me and #9 are the strongest. We need our rest, so that we can protect this group when the time comes. You and #6 are… Well you know.”
    Shikomizue gestured towards Kiriririri, a small girl with silver hair, who was poking the ground with a wooden stick, paying no mind to the conversation that was happening around her. So far, she had not participated in the fighting at all.
    “Okay, I’ll give you her, but we’re not that crazy! Master and I helped you in the fight against those… Those things, didn’t we?!”
    Sayaka pointed in the direction they had come from, where the group had fought against numerous strange beasts.
    Shikomizue scratched his head awkwardly in response. He did not want the group to start fighting among each other, as that would just make things worse. He wanted to figure out what was going on, and how to get out of it. In order to do that, he needed to get as many people as possible to form a team. If no one killed each other, the “game” or whatever it was, had to come to a stop. That was the conclusion he had reached.
    “Fine, I’ll take the first shift, along with… Her.”
    Shikomizue looked towards Kiriririri, who had just finished drawing a strange symbol in the grass.
    “Alright then, let’s get that fire going and—”
    “Get down, something is coming.”
    Norleas reached behind his back and fished out the two daggers he was storing in his jacket, then crouched down, signaling for the others to do the same.
    The group gathered together, and those who had them drew their weapons.
    “What did you see?”
    Shikomizue did not have to wait for a response, as a large bear, covered in metal plating, walked past them. It was looking around, like it was searching for the group. It looked… Off. It looked intelligent, just like the other beasts they had fought that day.
    “Something is definitely not right with these things. They started attacking us right after we formed a team. Almost like… Someone doesn’t want us to team up.”
    Shikomizue thought to himself, as he recalled the days events. Actually, every time they had been away for combat for a certain period of time, something would come and attack them.
    Almost like something, or someone, were controlling them. If that was the case, then...
    “Master, behind you!”
    Sayaka shouted to himself, and jumped forward. In the next second, a large paw covered in metal slammed down on the very spot Sayaka had been standing.
    Reaching into his maid uniform, Sayaka fished out a strange statue, in the shape of an anime figure.
    “They know we’re here master, so we might as well make some noise.”
    Turning the head of the statue around 180 degrees, Sayaka threw it behind the tree, where the second bear had attacked from.
    “Everyone, if you don’t want to go boom, I suggest you run!”
    Moments later, the figure exploded, turning the ground beneath it to ash, blowing the bear to bits in the process.
    The other bear was alerted to their presence, and jumped at Norleas, who slashed at its snout with his daggers before it had time to react. The beast roared in pain, and slammed its massive paw towards Norleas, who elegantly jumped out of the paws path, and went in for another attack.
    While the plate armor proved to be an obstacle, Norleas still managed to bring the massive beast down in a matter of seconds, as a flurry of dagger cuts tore into its hide like it was butter, always finding the unprotected parts of the bears body.

    Meanwhile, Shikomizue was fending of two wolves with his wakizashi katanas, holding back one wolf with each blade, as he pressed them against the wolves sharp fangs.
    “Where is #6? Someone cover her.”
    “Yes, yes, Master and I got her, don’t worry.”
    Throwing explosive statues at everything that moved inside the forest, Sayaka jumped around Kiriririri, who was sitting on the ground, watching the fighting happen around her with an indifferent expression.
    “Ohh, we’re gonna make master so proud, yes we are, tralala.”
    Sayaka sang as he looked up at the sky, throwing statues now seemingly at random. A few landed close to Norleas, but he simply moved out of their path with incredible speed each time, still slashing and stabbing any beast that came in his way with his daggers.
     
    The group fended off countless beasts, until finally, only one remained. It was a massive tiger, also covered in metal plating like the bears from before. The beast’s eyes were glowing in a strange blue light, and it moved faster than any other creature they had fought so far.
    Sayaka had tried throwing several statues at it, but it always got out of the blast zone before it was damaged.
    Norleas was unable to get close to the beast as well, as it was simply too fast.
    Shikomizue knew they were out of options.
    “Tch… Is this really how it ends?”
    He clicked his tongue, and started to walk towards the beast while he shook his head.
    “Am I really doing this?”
    After glancing over his shoulder, taking another look at his three teammates, Shikomizue nodded, and closed his eyes.
    “Listen up. I know what’s going on. These things are being controlled by someone. As long as we’re in a group, we’ll be sitting ducks. They are either being controlled by whoever started this fucked up game... Someone who wants us to keep fighting, or it’s another contender, in which case we should split up to try and find the bastard.
    So...  Guys, split up. Run. For now, just get as far away from each other as possible.”
    “GRAAWRH!”
    Like it understood what Shikomizue was saying, the tiger roared, and charged at the group. It was not happy.
    “Yes come on, you stupid cat.”
    Shikomizue charged as well, running straight ahead, towards the beast’s fangs.
    Then…
    “GUAAH!”
    Shikomizue screamed in pain, as the tiger bit him, its large fangs digging into his left side.
    “I’ll keep this thing at bay… You guys… Run away… Now!”
    Lifting up his free arm, Shikomizue gripped his katana firmly, and slashed at the tiger’s front legs, which were not covered by armor. That should slow it down. The thing was, it would have been impossible to target its legs without making it stop first. And, the only way to do that was to make it stop moving, for instance, by letting it bite one of them. Shikomizue had realized this a while ago, as he watched his comrades fail to hit the beast, and he had given his own life so that the other three could live.
    “You guys better figure out what the fuck is going on here, and stop this ‘game’, alright?”
    Shikomizue looked over his shoulder, watching as his allies ran into different directions. No beasts chased them.
    Pleased that he his plan had worked, Shikomizue fished out a cigarette from pocket, and moved it to his mouth, his hand shaking. He didn’t have anything to light it with, but he still put it in his mouth, and took a deep breath, closing his eyes.
    That was his last breath.
         
     
    Norleas walked through the forest in silence. His daggers were still dripping with blood from the countless monsters he had killed. Still, he had not even broken a sweat. Killing was his job, after all. It was a breath of fresh air for him to kill beasts instead of people.
    It was strange. The person whose job was to take people’s lives had chosen to join an alliance to avoid killing others.
    It was different this time, after all. The people in question were his friends. His fellow Fuwanovel users. There was no way he could kill them.
    Sensing something moving behind him, Norleas gripped his dagger, and prepared for battle. But…
    “Oh, it’s just you.”
    He lowered his weapons. Behind him stood the strange girl from before, Kiriririri.
    “What, didn’t you hear what the boss said? We’re supposed to split up. What, are you scared in the dark by yourself?”
    Kiriririri didn't’ say anything. She simply lifted her arm, pointing into the darkness behind Norleas.
    “What? What is… It…”
    Norleas turned around to look at what she was pointing at, and suddenly felt a sharp pain in his abdomen. Looking down at his own stomach, he saw a silvery blade sticking out from his chest, covered in fresh blood.
    “Wh-What…”
    “Hehe.”
    The laughter of a little girl was the last thing he heard, as his lifeless body fell to the floor.
    Kiriririri pulled the sword out of Norleas’ corpse, and it soon turned into light particles, vanishing into thin air.
    Kiriririri then simply kept walking through the forest with an emotionless expression.

     
     
     
    Kiriririri: Status = Alive
    Sayaka: Status = Alive



     
    Wildcards This Week?
    None
     
    Dead This Week:
    Still Alive:
     
  7. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Plk_Lesiak for a blog entry, Fuwa Battle Royale - Week 1 -   
    Fuwanovel Battle Royale - Volume 2 -
    Chapter 1: The Beginning
     
    <??> Watched the screen in front of <him/her?> intently. Everything was ready. The time had finally come. All that planning, all that preparation. It had all been for this moment.
    “All the pieces are in place. Well then, let’s start the game, shall we?”
    <??> Pressed the button before <him/her?> with a wicked smile.
    “Hear me, members of Fuwanovel. You are here for a single purpose; to entertain me! Those who have their name announced over these broadcasts shall enter the arena, and fight to the death! Anyone and anything you see out in the arenas will be an enemy, so be careful… And ruthless. As far as the rules go… There are none, heh.
    Good luck.”
     
    Day 1:
    Members in this chapter:

    “The game has begun. Good luck.”
    “‘Alright, time to hunt.” Ranzo jumped down from the platform he was standing on, numbered ‘11’. He had woken up inside an unfamiliar room just moments before, where he had found his suit and weapons. After a short, confusing briefing from the person in charge, Ranzo’s <cell?> had opened, and he could walk out. What greeted him was a massive forest, full of large trees towering high above him. The large trees blocked out almost all the sunlight, making it hard for Ranzo to see where he was going. But, it was either straight ahead, or back to the cell, so Ranzo chose to keep walking.
    The “briefing” had been simple. “You are stuck here. You are to fight anything and anyone you come across. If you are the last alive after the game is over, you win. If you die, you lose.”
    “Gee, really? If I die, I lose? That’s a shocker.” Ranzo spun his scythe around his body with precision while he walked, clearly used to handling the weapon. A sabre hung from his waist in a makeshift sheathe, crafted from his belt.
    After having advanced through the forest for a good ten minutes, Ranzo reached a suspicious looking cave, marked with a number— “7”.
    “Hm, another contender?” Ranzo whispered, and gripped the handle of his scythe firmly while he scanned his surroundings. If his hunch was right, the numbers represented contenders in the “game”. He was 11, and “7” was a different Fuwanovel user, also entered in the game.
    Crack.
    Ranzo spun around instinctively at the sound of a branch breaking behind him, and in the same motion, he threw his scythe forwards. The sound of metal colliding with metal made Ranzo flinch for a brief second, and he lost sight of the person who had knocked his scythe out of the air.
    “Tch.” Ranzo gripped his sabre and chased the mystery person, like a wolf rushing towards a sheep. He had no plan. The only thing going through his head was: kill it. Whoever or whatever it was; kill it.
     
    Meanwhile
    SeniorBlitz ran as fast as he could through the forest, like he had the grim reaper himself on his heels. That was in fact what Senior had thought for a second when he saw the scythe fly towards him just moments before. Senior was not well versed in any kind of combat. He had, in fact, never been in a fight in his entire life. What he did have, however, was a special ability. The ability to know what to do, where to go. He couldn’t explain it well, but there was something guiding him at all times. If he was about to trip and fall, something in his mind would tell him to stop. If he ever got lost, something would guide him back home, even if he had no idea where he was. It was thanks to that power, that guide, that Senior was still alive. He had seen the scythe coming seconds before it was thrown, and had used the sword that was given to him at the start of the game to block its path. He had sadly dropped the sword in his escape, and was therefore now unarmed.
    “Stop running my friend, I wish you no harm!”
    His attacker was shouting at Senior from behind. Thanks to his ability, Senior knew that he would be able to shake off his tail if he just kept following the path laid out in his mind. He did not look back, he did not falter.
    “Tch, you little… How long do you plan on running for?”
    “I’ll catch you eventually you little slime! Just you wait, I’m coming for you!”
    The voice of his attacker grew distant, as Senior just kept on running through the forest. Before long, he had completely shaken off the madman running after him.
    “Haah, haah, haah…” Senior finally had the opportunity to stop for a breath. With his hands on his knees, he spent a few minutes calming down. He knew that the man behind him would not be able to find him for at least another ten minutes, thanks to his ability.
    “Alright, time to find a better place to hide.”
    Senior got back up, and started walking through the dense forest, looking for shelter. He figured it would be smart to find someplace safe to gather his thoughts. It would be best to do so before nightfall, so he started walking faster, following the path lit up in his mind.
    “Just about another hundred meters this way, and— Huh?!”
    “GRAARGH!”
    Senior was so focused on following the path to “safety”, he paid no mind to his surroundings, and did not notice the strange creature approaching from his left. Whatever it was, its massive jaw closed around Senior’s chest, and he was lifted up into the air and shook brutally back and forth, the sharp teeth of the beast ripping his flesh apart with each movement.
    “GYAAAAH!”
    Senior let out a primal scream, and tried to punch the creature with his free arm, but it was no use.
    The beast’s iron jaw remained closed, and the life soon drained from Senior’s body, as most of his organs and blood poured down onto the grass below him. His entire torso had been ripped to bits, and what was left of him was soon devoured by the beast, leaving only pools of blood and a few chunks of flesh behind.
     
     
    About an hour later, Ranzo arrived at the scene of Senior’s death. Taking one look at the pool of blood and gore, Ranzo clicked his tongue, and turned back.
    “Guess someone got to him before me. Oh well, time to look for the next guy, I guess.”
    Whistling a song to himself, Ranzo spun his scythe around, matching the song’s rhythm as he walked back into the depths of the forest, looking for new prey to hunt.
     

    Elsewhere:
    Arcadeotic sat at the end of a cliff, looking at the waterfall below him with a emotionless expression, balancing a katana on his feet. A single sudden motion would surely send the sword tumbling down the fifty meter long drop.
    Arcadeotic was wearing a blue yukata, stained red with the blood of a pack of wild boars he had killed an hour ago. After cooking some of their meat on a fire, he had eaten some for himself, then tossed the rest down into the abyss. He had no intentions of sharing the meat with anyone else, nor did he want the smell of the meat to attract possible predators. He had extinguished the fire as soon as he was done cooking the meat, but it might still have notified someone of his location. Nevertheless, Arcadeotic sat completely still on the cliff, staring out into nothingness.
    Sure enough, after another few minutes, the sound of footsteps could be heard behind him.
    Still, Arcadeotic remaind motionless, not facing his attacker.
     
    Sneaking up behind him was Thatcomicguy, clutching his spear with his right hand. In his free arm was a wooden shield, covered in thick leather. Other than his weapons, Thatcomicguy was completely naked, though his body was covered in blue war paint.
    Thatcomicguy snuck up to Arcadeotic until he was a mere two meters away, then stabbed at Arcadeotic’s back with his spear. Right before the spear hit Arcadeotic’s back, he jumped straight up into the air, grabbed his katana, and in the same motion as he drew it from its sheath, he cut at Thatcomicguy’s chest.
    Thatcomicguy barely had time to block the slice with his shield, and was forced back a few steps from the impact.
    Meanwhile, Arcadeotic landed gracefully on the edge of the cliff, and quickly moved in for another attack, cutting at Thatcomicguy’s left foot.
    Arcadeotic closed the distance between them in a second, and mercilessly sliced a deep cut in Thatcomicguy’s calf.
    “Ugh…”
    Thatcomicguy groaned in pain, and pushed his shield forward defensively, hitting Arcadeotic in the chest.
    Arcadeotic fell backwards, but quickly regained his balance.
    For the first time in the fight, Arcadeotic glanced at his opponent, and chuckled.
    “You look ridiculous.”
    Thatcomicguy paid him no mind, and tried to focus on his plan of attack. He should have the upper hand, even with the cut on his leg, as he had the longest reach thanks to his spear, and a shield to block the katana’s slashes. The leather on his shield had taken a hit already, and was already starting to come apart. It probably wouldn’t last too long.
    Seemingly having come up with a plan, Thatcomicguy stepped forward. Although the pain in his leg was nothing to joke about, he did not let it stop him.
    “Yeah, well, we’ll see who gets the last laugh.”
    Keeping just enough distance between himself and his opponent, so that the katana would not be able to reach him, Thatcomicguy thrust his spear towards Arcadeotic. Arcadeotic easily deflected the thrust, but as he was about to counterattack, Thatcomicguy swiftly changed his grip, turning his spear downwards towards Arcadeotic leg, and dug the tip of his spear into Arcadeotic’s knee. Arcadeotic winced in response, but didn’t let the pain stop him from fighting. Not wasting any time, Arcadeotic slashed two times, but both attacks were blocked by Thatcomicguy’s pesky shield.
    “Tch.”
    It became impossible for Arcadeotic to stand on his wounded leg, which meant he would be at an even bigger disadvantage than before. His strongest point was his speed, but without his full mobility, he would be unable to close the distance between himself and his opponent fast enough to stop the spear from keeping him at bay.
    “... An eye for an eye, huh?”
    Arcadeotic said to himself, as he tried to come up with a way out of the dire situation. He had cut his opponent’s leg, but in return, his own knee had been damaged. Both of them were less mobile, but it seemed like his own injury was a bit more serious.
    “Well, what can you do.”
    Arcadeotic walked forward with awkward steps, his wounded leg mostly just being dragged along the ground.
    “I’ll end this with one strike.”
    The bold statement from Arcadeotic made Thatcomicguy snicker.
    “Oh, is that so? Well by all means, come at me.”
    Thatcomicguy spat back, readied his spear, and covered his chest with his shield. There was no way Arcadeotic would be able to attack his opponent’s torso. And yet…
    “Hmph!”
    With a grunt, Arcadeotic jumped forward, and with all his might, he slammed the flat side of his sword into the wooden shield. The impact made Thatcomicguy stagger, and he let out a painful groan as he put all his weight on his wounded leg.
    Still in the air, Arcadeotic slashed downwards. His sword moved along the rough leather covering the wooden shield, until it reached Thatcomicguy’s exposed shoulder. The sharp blade slashed open the naked shoulder, making Thatcomicguy drop his shield. Unfortunately for Arcadeotic, he was unable to brace himself properly after the attack, and he crashed into the ground, dropping his katana. The air was knocked out of him as his chest collided with the rough ground. But, he wasn’t done there. Although the world around him was spinning, he used his healthy leg to kick violently at Thatcomicguy’s wounded foot.
    “Guaaah!”
    Thatcomicguy screamed, as he too fell to the ground, paralyzed by pain.
    Crawling towards his katana, Arcadeotic was ready to deliver the finishing blow. He gripped the hilt of his weapon, and turned towards his fallen enemy. Although every part of his body hurt, Arcadeotic somehow managed to stand, and moved towards his prey with clumsy movements.
    “Hya!”
    As he reached his target, he brought his katana above his shoulder, and slashed mercilessly at Thatcomicguy's neck.
    Clink.
    The sound of something breaking made Arcadeotic look at his sword in confusion. The katana’s blade had snapped in half, most likely a result from his fall. And since the blade had broken mid swing, he had not actually hit his opponent.
    “Well, shi—”
    Before Arcadeotic could finish his sentence, the tip of a spear dug into his throat, making a spray of fresh blood shoot out from the wound, dying Thatcomicguy’s skin in red.
    As Arcadeotic’s dead body hit the floor, Thatcomicguy dropped his spear, as the strength began to leave his body.
    “You… Tough bastard…”
    With those words, he passed out.
     

     
    Meanwhile, at the outskirts of the forest:

     
    “How’s this place?”
    “Hmm, looks good. We’ll camp here for now. Someone start a fire.”
    “Ugh, do you think there are any more of those things out there? I’m not sure I’m comfortable sleeping here, out in the open…”
    “Don’t worry, we’ll take shifts keeping guard. #28, #6, you two take the first shift.”
    “Huh? Who died and made you the boss?”
    Four figures, covered in mud and blood, were talking under the cover of a giant tree, just half a kilometer from the edge of the forest. The four of them were members of Fuwanovel, and contenders in the death game that had started previously that day. But, neither of them wanted to kill their fellow members, and as a result, they had formed a team.
    Shortly after they teamed up, however, they were attacked by giant monsters that seemed to live in the depths of the forest. Hungry and tired, the four of them had finally reached a seemingly peaceful area, and were setting up camp with what little resources they had.
    The four members were Sayaka (#28), Norleas (#9), Shikomizue (#13) and Kiriririri (#6).
    Shikomizue was the natural leader type, and had taken the lead of the group as a result, something that did not sit well with Sayaka.
    “Why do I have to listen to your orders, huh? I’m tired too! I want to sleep just as much as the next guy!”
    “Look, I don’t mean to be rude here, but in terms of actual combat abilities, me and #9 are the strongest. We need our rest, so that we can protect this group when the time comes. You and #6 are… Well you know.”
    Shikomizue gestured towards Kiriririri, a small girl with silver hair, who was poking the ground with a wooden stick, paying no mind to the conversation that was happening around her. So far, she had not participated in the fighting at all.
    “Okay, I’ll give you her, but we’re not that crazy! Master and I helped you in the fight against those… Those things, didn’t we?!”
    Sayaka pointed in the direction they had come from, where the group had fought against numerous strange beasts.
    Shikomizue scratched his head awkwardly in response. He did not want the group to start fighting among each other, as that would just make things worse. He wanted to figure out what was going on, and how to get out of it. In order to do that, he needed to get as many people as possible to form a team. If no one killed each other, the “game” or whatever it was, had to come to a stop. That was the conclusion he had reached.
    “Fine, I’ll take the first shift, along with… Her.”
    Shikomizue looked towards Kiriririri, who had just finished drawing a strange symbol in the grass.
    “Alright then, let’s get that fire going and—”
    “Get down, something is coming.”
    Norleas reached behind his back and fished out the two daggers he was storing in his jacket, then crouched down, signaling for the others to do the same.
    The group gathered together, and those who had them drew their weapons.
    “What did you see?”
    Shikomizue did not have to wait for a response, as a large bear, covered in metal plating, walked past them. It was looking around, like it was searching for the group. It looked… Off. It looked intelligent, just like the other beasts they had fought that day.
    “Something is definitely not right with these things. They started attacking us right after we formed a team. Almost like… Someone doesn’t want us to team up.”
    Shikomizue thought to himself, as he recalled the days events. Actually, every time they had been away for combat for a certain period of time, something would come and attack them.
    Almost like something, or someone, were controlling them. If that was the case, then...
    “Master, behind you!”
    Sayaka shouted to himself, and jumped forward. In the next second, a large paw covered in metal slammed down on the very spot Sayaka had been standing.
    Reaching into his maid uniform, Sayaka fished out a strange statue, in the shape of an anime figure.
    “They know we’re here master, so we might as well make some noise.”
    Turning the head of the statue around 180 degrees, Sayaka threw it behind the tree, where the second bear had attacked from.
    “Everyone, if you don’t want to go boom, I suggest you run!”
    Moments later, the figure exploded, turning the ground beneath it to ash, blowing the bear to bits in the process.
    The other bear was alerted to their presence, and jumped at Norleas, who slashed at its snout with his daggers before it had time to react. The beast roared in pain, and slammed its massive paw towards Norleas, who elegantly jumped out of the paws path, and went in for another attack.
    While the plate armor proved to be an obstacle, Norleas still managed to bring the massive beast down in a matter of seconds, as a flurry of dagger cuts tore into its hide like it was butter, always finding the unprotected parts of the bears body.

    Meanwhile, Shikomizue was fending of two wolves with his wakizashi katanas, holding back one wolf with each blade, as he pressed them against the wolves sharp fangs.
    “Where is #6? Someone cover her.”
    “Yes, yes, Master and I got her, don’t worry.”
    Throwing explosive statues at everything that moved inside the forest, Sayaka jumped around Kiriririri, who was sitting on the ground, watching the fighting happen around her with an indifferent expression.
    “Ohh, we’re gonna make master so proud, yes we are, tralala.”
    Sayaka sang as he looked up at the sky, throwing statues now seemingly at random. A few landed close to Norleas, but he simply moved out of their path with incredible speed each time, still slashing and stabbing any beast that came in his way with his daggers.
     
    The group fended off countless beasts, until finally, only one remained. It was a massive tiger, also covered in metal plating like the bears from before. The beast’s eyes were glowing in a strange blue light, and it moved faster than any other creature they had fought so far.
    Sayaka had tried throwing several statues at it, but it always got out of the blast zone before it was damaged.
    Norleas was unable to get close to the beast as well, as it was simply too fast.
    Shikomizue knew they were out of options.
    “Tch… Is this really how it ends?”
    He clicked his tongue, and started to walk towards the beast while he shook his head.
    “Am I really doing this?”
    After glancing over his shoulder, taking another look at his three teammates, Shikomizue nodded, and closed his eyes.
    “Listen up. I know what’s going on. These things are being controlled by someone. As long as we’re in a group, we’ll be sitting ducks. They are either being controlled by whoever started this fucked up game... Someone who wants us to keep fighting, or it’s another contender, in which case we should split up to try and find the bastard.
    So...  Guys, split up. Run. For now, just get as far away from each other as possible.”
    “GRAAWRH!”
    Like it understood what Shikomizue was saying, the tiger roared, and charged at the group. It was not happy.
    “Yes come on, you stupid cat.”
    Shikomizue charged as well, running straight ahead, towards the beast’s fangs.
    Then…
    “GUAAH!”
    Shikomizue screamed in pain, as the tiger bit him, its large fangs digging into his left side.
    “I’ll keep this thing at bay… You guys… Run away… Now!”
    Lifting up his free arm, Shikomizue gripped his katana firmly, and slashed at the tiger’s front legs, which were not covered by armor. That should slow it down. The thing was, it would have been impossible to target its legs without making it stop first. And, the only way to do that was to make it stop moving, for instance, by letting it bite one of them. Shikomizue had realized this a while ago, as he watched his comrades fail to hit the beast, and he had given his own life so that the other three could live.
    “You guys better figure out what the fuck is going on here, and stop this ‘game’, alright?”
    Shikomizue looked over his shoulder, watching as his allies ran into different directions. No beasts chased them.
    Pleased that he his plan had worked, Shikomizue fished out a cigarette from pocket, and moved it to his mouth, his hand shaking. He didn’t have anything to light it with, but he still put it in his mouth, and took a deep breath, closing his eyes.
    That was his last breath.
         
     
    Norleas walked through the forest in silence. His daggers were still dripping with blood from the countless monsters he had killed. Still, he had not even broken a sweat. Killing was his job, after all. It was a breath of fresh air for him to kill beasts instead of people.
    It was strange. The person whose job was to take people’s lives had chosen to join an alliance to avoid killing others.
    It was different this time, after all. The people in question were his friends. His fellow Fuwanovel users. There was no way he could kill them.
    Sensing something moving behind him, Norleas gripped his dagger, and prepared for battle. But…
    “Oh, it’s just you.”
    He lowered his weapons. Behind him stood the strange girl from before, Kiriririri.
    “What, didn’t you hear what the boss said? We’re supposed to split up. What, are you scared in the dark by yourself?”
    Kiriririri didn't’ say anything. She simply lifted her arm, pointing into the darkness behind Norleas.
    “What? What is… It…”
    Norleas turned around to look at what she was pointing at, and suddenly felt a sharp pain in his abdomen. Looking down at his own stomach, he saw a silvery blade sticking out from his chest, covered in fresh blood.
    “Wh-What…”
    “Hehe.”
    The laughter of a little girl was the last thing he heard, as his lifeless body fell to the floor.
    Kiriririri pulled the sword out of Norleas’ corpse, and it soon turned into light particles, vanishing into thin air.
    Kiriririri then simply kept walking through the forest with an emotionless expression.

     
     
     
    Kiriririri: Status = Alive
    Sayaka: Status = Alive



     
    Wildcards This Week?
    None
     
    Dead This Week:
    Still Alive:
     
  8. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Plk_Lesiak for a blog entry, Beat Valkyrie Ixseal Review   
    Beat Valkyrie Ixseal Review
    Choukou Shinki Ixseal, (Beat Valkyrie Ixseal), is the newest game in AliceSoft's "Beat" series. (Same universe as Beat Blades Haruka and Beat Angel Escalayer.)
    Though, while the game is set in the same universe as the other two games, it can be played without having played either of its predecessors. (The only connection to previous games is a few small references, that are not important to the story at all. In fact, I'd recommend playing this game first if you plan on playing a game in the series. I will explain why later in the review.)
    Similar to its predecessors, Ixseal is a gameplay/ VN hybrid, where you advance through a number of stages, defeating monsters along the way until you reach the area boss. Upon defeating the boss, the story progresses, and you move onto a new area. In between gameplay aspects, you see normal VN styled scenes, which makes up the bulk of the game. The game is voiced throughout all the story segments, as well as the H-scenes. The only portions of the game that are not voiced are "filler" scenes, that appear between gameplay segments, outside of the main story. These are normally only added for comic relief, and are not actually important at all, so the lack of voice acting in these scenes means quite little.

    The story
    In Ixseal you play as Oudou Tsuguhiko, a perverted man who swears he is the true "demon king," the most powerful evil being in the world. His dream is to make all female students in the world wear bloomers as their official uniform, through the use of his demonic powers. His best friend, Kirika, always brushes Tsuguhiko's talk about demons and such aside as jokes, but it turns out that he is actually telling the truth.
    With the help of his servant demon Bezel, Tsuguhiko's true power as the demon king is awakened by a dark ritual, and the power of the seven deadly sins, (the source of the demon king's power,) pours into him. The ritual is interrupted shortly after, however, as an angel with the name Xillia shows up, with the intention of killing the newborn demon king.
    Bezel and Tsuguhiko escapes, but things only go downhill from there for Tsuguhiko. He is betrayed by Bezel, who steals six of the seven deadly sins from his body, and uses them to awaken six powerful demons, leaving Tsuguhiko with nothing but the power of lust in his body. Bezel tries to take Tsuguhiko's life, but fails because of the angel, who finally catches up to them, driving Bezel away. Sadly, Tsuguhiko's friend Kirika is killed in the struggle.
    Kirika is revived by Xillia, but this takes up nearly all her power, leaving her defenseless against the demons summoned by Bezel. But, through the power of lust, which still resides within Tsuguhiko, he powers up Xillia with demonic energy, and she changes forms from an angel, into the ideal warrior in Tsuguhiko's mind— a valkyrie.

    With the power of lust, the demon king powers up Xillia through sex, and with the combination of her own power and demonic energy, she grows stronger, ready to take on Bezel's army.
    Bezel, along with six of the seven deadly sins, (in the form of powerful demons,) plan on absorbing energy from all humans, so that they can take over the world. The demons create a barrier over earth, stopping other angels from coming down from heaven to help, leaving Xillia alone.
    Now it's up to Xillia and Tsuguhiko to stop the demons' onslaught before it's too late.

    While the gameplay part of Ixseal might make it sound silly, (have sex with the heroines to make them stronger, by injecting them with your demonic energy) the story is miles better in Ixseal compared to Haruka. I'm not sure I'd call this game a nukige, actually, as the story does truly work by itself, not relying on the abundance of H at all. (Unlike Haruka, where the H content is the most appealing factor by far.) The characters are well designed and interesting, and the story is good. Lastly, the protagonist is very well done as well. He is actually powerful; he is the demon king, after all. The story is about taking back the deadly sins stolen by Bezel, powering up Tsuguhiko with each boss defeated. While he does not do the fighting himself, he does not feel like a pointless plot device. You actually feel like you are the demon king, trying to reclaim your powers, and not a can of gasoline that exists only to power up the heroines. (Like in Beat Blades Haruka.)
    Sadly, Ixseal wastes a lot of its potential by sticking to the same formula that Haruka did.
    Instead of making it possible for the player to choose how to guide the protagonist from the start, (choosing to be good or evil,) the game has it set in stone that Tsuguhiko is a good guy at heart, and he acts like the biggest vanilla-pleb in history towards his comrades, despite the fact that he is the demon king, and his objective is ultimately to reclaim his powers. Not exactly what you'd expect from the demon king.
    The story is good, but it would have been even better if there was more choices in terms of how the protagonist acts, in my opinion. The more you learn about the origin of his powers, and the history of the demons, the more you feel like making choices to impact his decisions, but you are left following the linear story until the branching point that only appears towards the end of the story.
    Another issue I found with the structure of the game is that it is very similar to Haruka at its core. While the story is different, and the characters' motivations etc also differ from that of Haruka's, it still shares enough similarities that the story can become predictable if you have played Haruka. Because of this, I would personally recommend reading Ixseal first, if you have not yet read Haruka, as the plot twists will be more surprising. And, seeing as the story is without a doubt better in Ixseal, this way you will get more enjoyment out of the game, compared to if you read Haruka first. That being said, the game is still good, and some predictability won't ruin that.

    The gameplay:
    Similar to Beat Blades Haruka, the gameplay comes in two stages. The first stage is all about buffing your heroines by sleeping with them, raising their stats in the process. Then, you advance through an area, defeating monsters, collecting power-ups, and fighting bosses.
    Each time you lose against an area boss, you see a rape scene with that boss, (with a maximum of two scenes per boss,) and the heroine's "lust" meter is filled up with one stage. (If the lust meter gets maxed out, you will get a bad ending.) These scenes can be disabled in the menu, if you do not like to see scenes of that nature. Seeing as what types of H you make your heroines do during the first phase of gameplay is up to you, you can freely choose to be evil and only see dark H, or be nice and only see vanilla. (Or do a mix of both!)


    You also have two other meters to keep an eye on. The love meter, and the demon energy meter. (Actually has a different name, but this sounds cooler!) While this might sound complicated, it is actually very simple. The love meter is raised by doing things like going on dates with the heroines, while the demon energy meter is raised by doing evil things to the heroines.
    Depending on the stats you are left with towards the end, you can choose an ending with your favored heroine.
    Just like Haruka, the boss fights can prove difficult if you do not boost the stats of the heroines properly, so do be careful there. Overall though, the difficulty has been decreased quite a lot. While I found myself failing quite a few times during my first playthrough of Haruka, I did not get a game over screen once during my first playthrough of Ixseal.

    H-scene and ending variety
    Beat Blades Haruka is known for being filled with all sorts of H-scenes, ranging from normal vanilla, to hardcore rape, beastiality and more. Ixseal also has a varied roster of H-scenes, though not as many as Haruka. (I believe Ixseal has a bit over 100, while Haruka had over 150.) But, seeing as Ixseal is more story driven than Haruka was, they might have opted for more focus on the story instead of adding extra H-scenes. But, while the game has less H-scenes, the quality has not dropped. Even the vanilla scenes are quite good, (I phrase it this way, as I did not exactly play the game for the vanilla personally.) The voice work in this game is amazing, which adds a lot to the H-scenes. There is a large variety of different H in Ixseal as well, with most scenes being very hot. So, while this might not be as nukige-ish as Haruka, it sure does have its fair share of good H, too.
    Now, the endings. I had high hopes for the Ixseal endings, especially the bad ends. The Haruka bad endings were very good, though way too short. Seeing as we are literally the demon king himself in this game, I was hoping that the bad endings would be longer, and even better than Haruka's.
    The game has six primary endings, one bad and one good for each heroine, a harem end, and a "normal" ending. You can also get other types of bad ends through the game, but these six are the main heroine endings. (For comparison, Haruka had three endings per heroine, a good, a bad and a brutal end.)
    In Ixseal, they did indeed make slightly longer endings, though they still felt too short to me. The bad ends did somewhat live up to my expectations. I don't want to get into details to avoid spoilers, but they felt satisfying to a certain extent. (To me at least, as I want dark bad ends.) And dark they were. Kirika's ending was something out of an utsuge, and Xillia's bad end was definitely a cool way to tie the "evil" side of the protagonist into the main story. That being said, they were still too short, which in turn still made me feel a bit disappointed. With how long the game is, and how much build up there is to the climax of the story, I would have wanted endings at least twice as long as the current ones, perhaps even longer.
    Still, they were pretty good, all things considered. As for the good endings, they too were well done, and even though I did not have any plans on caring much about the vanilla side of the game, I do have to admit, I felt some feels towards the end of the good routes. Sadly, these too were a bit too short as well.
    If they do make another game in the series, I hope that they finally make the endings a bit longer for that one.

    Music, art, the heroines and more.
    Like I mentioned above, the voice acting in the game is stellar. It had to be hard delivering some of the messed up lines in this game with a straight face, lol. The six demons representing the deadly sins were all handled well, and all come off as creepy and "demonic" in their own ways. I especially took a liking to Pride and Wrath, as the two really fit perfectly for the roles they are meant to fill. The VAs do a great job of bringing the "essence" of their sin into their character in their voiced lines.
    The heroines were... good and bad. While Kirika had lots of unique aspects that made her fun and different from her "counterpart" in Beat Blades Haruka, Narika, Xillia was way too similar to Haruka in my opinion. The two are basically the same, boring character, just in different settings. That being said, Xillia has a very good backstory, which makes up for some of her blandness.
    Overall, I wanted the heroines to be more unique compared to the heroines in Haruka, and found myself a bit irritated at the similarities at times. Nevertheless, the story for each heroine was done well, so it was not a complete bust. Also, Kirika's ass is just amazing. (/ω\)
    As far as the art goes, it's just great. The resolution was stepped up to HD, (Haruka's resolution was 800x600, which was a disappointment in my eyes.) The art is consistent and well drawn, and some of the CGs are truly badass. Like I mentioned before, the character designs were great, so I have no complaints about the art at all, tbh.
    I'm not really a music guy, so I can't give a detailed review of the music, so I'll just say this: I liked it a lot. There are over 30 music tracks in the game, all well fit for the scenes in which they are used. I especially liked the opening. Definitely a game I'd consider buying the OST for.
    Conclusion:
    Ixseal is much better than Haruka in my book. Pretty much everything I felt was lacking in Haruka was improved in Ixseal, (although it did not quite win me over when it came to the game's endings.) The story, characters, art, music and gameplay have all been improved, making a great overall experience.
    I rated the game an 8.4, which would have been even higher had the endings been longer, and more thought out. Still, this is a very solid game for both vanilla fans, and people like me, who likes games with darker H.
    If you're a fan of demons, angels and such, you'll definitely like this game. I am personally a sucker for anything that involves the seven deadly sins, so I was hooked from the start.
  9. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from McDerpingheimer III for a blog entry, Beat Valkyrie Ixseal Review   
    Beat Valkyrie Ixseal Review
    Choukou Shinki Ixseal, (Beat Valkyrie Ixseal), is the newest game in AliceSoft's "Beat" series. (Same universe as Beat Blades Haruka and Beat Angel Escalayer.)
    Though, while the game is set in the same universe as the other two games, it can be played without having played either of its predecessors. (The only connection to previous games is a few small references, that are not important to the story at all. In fact, I'd recommend playing this game first if you plan on playing a game in the series. I will explain why later in the review.)
    Similar to its predecessors, Ixseal is a gameplay/ VN hybrid, where you advance through a number of stages, defeating monsters along the way until you reach the area boss. Upon defeating the boss, the story progresses, and you move onto a new area. In between gameplay aspects, you see normal VN styled scenes, which makes up the bulk of the game. The game is voiced throughout all the story segments, as well as the H-scenes. The only portions of the game that are not voiced are "filler" scenes, that appear between gameplay segments, outside of the main story. These are normally only added for comic relief, and are not actually important at all, so the lack of voice acting in these scenes means quite little.

    The story
    In Ixseal you play as Oudou Tsuguhiko, a perverted man who swears he is the true "demon king," the most powerful evil being in the world. His dream is to make all female students in the world wear bloomers as their official uniform, through the use of his demonic powers. His best friend, Kirika, always brushes Tsuguhiko's talk about demons and such aside as jokes, but it turns out that he is actually telling the truth.
    With the help of his servant demon Bezel, Tsuguhiko's true power as the demon king is awakened by a dark ritual, and the power of the seven deadly sins, (the source of the demon king's power,) pours into him. The ritual is interrupted shortly after, however, as an angel with the name Xillia shows up, with the intention of killing the newborn demon king.
    Bezel and Tsuguhiko escapes, but things only go downhill from there for Tsuguhiko. He is betrayed by Bezel, who steals six of the seven deadly sins from his body, and uses them to awaken six powerful demons, leaving Tsuguhiko with nothing but the power of lust in his body. Bezel tries to take Tsuguhiko's life, but fails because of the angel, who finally catches up to them, driving Bezel away. Sadly, Tsuguhiko's friend Kirika is killed in the struggle.
    Kirika is revived by Xillia, but this takes up nearly all her power, leaving her defenseless against the demons summoned by Bezel. But, through the power of lust, which still resides within Tsuguhiko, he powers up Xillia with demonic energy, and she changes forms from an angel, into the ideal warrior in Tsuguhiko's mind— a valkyrie.

    With the power of lust, the demon king powers up Xillia through sex, and with the combination of her own power and demonic energy, she grows stronger, ready to take on Bezel's army.
    Bezel, along with six of the seven deadly sins, (in the form of powerful demons,) plan on absorbing energy from all humans, so that they can take over the world. The demons create a barrier over earth, stopping other angels from coming down from heaven to help, leaving Xillia alone.
    Now it's up to Xillia and Tsuguhiko to stop the demons' onslaught before it's too late.

    While the gameplay part of Ixseal might make it sound silly, (have sex with the heroines to make them stronger, by injecting them with your demonic energy) the story is miles better in Ixseal compared to Haruka. I'm not sure I'd call this game a nukige, actually, as the story does truly work by itself, not relying on the abundance of H at all. (Unlike Haruka, where the H content is the most appealing factor by far.) The characters are well designed and interesting, and the story is good. Lastly, the protagonist is very well done as well. He is actually powerful; he is the demon king, after all. The story is about taking back the deadly sins stolen by Bezel, powering up Tsuguhiko with each boss defeated. While he does not do the fighting himself, he does not feel like a pointless plot device. You actually feel like you are the demon king, trying to reclaim your powers, and not a can of gasoline that exists only to power up the heroines. (Like in Beat Blades Haruka.)
    Sadly, Ixseal wastes a lot of its potential by sticking to the same formula that Haruka did.
    Instead of making it possible for the player to choose how to guide the protagonist from the start, (choosing to be good or evil,) the game has it set in stone that Tsuguhiko is a good guy at heart, and he acts like the biggest vanilla-pleb in history towards his comrades, despite the fact that he is the demon king, and his objective is ultimately to reclaim his powers. Not exactly what you'd expect from the demon king.
    The story is good, but it would have been even better if there was more choices in terms of how the protagonist acts, in my opinion. The more you learn about the origin of his powers, and the history of the demons, the more you feel like making choices to impact his decisions, but you are left following the linear story until the branching point that only appears towards the end of the story.
    Another issue I found with the structure of the game is that it is very similar to Haruka at its core. While the story is different, and the characters' motivations etc also differ from that of Haruka's, it still shares enough similarities that the story can become predictable if you have played Haruka. Because of this, I would personally recommend reading Ixseal first, if you have not yet read Haruka, as the plot twists will be more surprising. And, seeing as the story is without a doubt better in Ixseal, this way you will get more enjoyment out of the game, compared to if you read Haruka first. That being said, the game is still good, and some predictability won't ruin that.

    The gameplay:
    Similar to Beat Blades Haruka, the gameplay comes in two stages. The first stage is all about buffing your heroines by sleeping with them, raising their stats in the process. Then, you advance through an area, defeating monsters, collecting power-ups, and fighting bosses.
    Each time you lose against an area boss, you see a rape scene with that boss, (with a maximum of two scenes per boss,) and the heroine's "lust" meter is filled up with one stage. (If the lust meter gets maxed out, you will get a bad ending.) These scenes can be disabled in the menu, if you do not like to see scenes of that nature. Seeing as what types of H you make your heroines do during the first phase of gameplay is up to you, you can freely choose to be evil and only see dark H, or be nice and only see vanilla. (Or do a mix of both!)


    You also have two other meters to keep an eye on. The love meter, and the demon energy meter. (Actually has a different name, but this sounds cooler!) While this might sound complicated, it is actually very simple. The love meter is raised by doing things like going on dates with the heroines, while the demon energy meter is raised by doing evil things to the heroines.
    Depending on the stats you are left with towards the end, you can choose an ending with your favored heroine.
    Just like Haruka, the boss fights can prove difficult if you do not boost the stats of the heroines properly, so do be careful there. Overall though, the difficulty has been decreased quite a lot. While I found myself failing quite a few times during my first playthrough of Haruka, I did not get a game over screen once during my first playthrough of Ixseal.

    H-scene and ending variety
    Beat Blades Haruka is known for being filled with all sorts of H-scenes, ranging from normal vanilla, to hardcore rape, beastiality and more. Ixseal also has a varied roster of H-scenes, though not as many as Haruka. (I believe Ixseal has a bit over 100, while Haruka had over 150.) But, seeing as Ixseal is more story driven than Haruka was, they might have opted for more focus on the story instead of adding extra H-scenes. But, while the game has less H-scenes, the quality has not dropped. Even the vanilla scenes are quite good, (I phrase it this way, as I did not exactly play the game for the vanilla personally.) The voice work in this game is amazing, which adds a lot to the H-scenes. There is a large variety of different H in Ixseal as well, with most scenes being very hot. So, while this might not be as nukige-ish as Haruka, it sure does have its fair share of good H, too.
    Now, the endings. I had high hopes for the Ixseal endings, especially the bad ends. The Haruka bad endings were very good, though way too short. Seeing as we are literally the demon king himself in this game, I was hoping that the bad endings would be longer, and even better than Haruka's.
    The game has six primary endings, one bad and one good for each heroine, a harem end, and a "normal" ending. You can also get other types of bad ends through the game, but these six are the main heroine endings. (For comparison, Haruka had three endings per heroine, a good, a bad and a brutal end.)
    In Ixseal, they did indeed make slightly longer endings, though they still felt too short to me. The bad ends did somewhat live up to my expectations. I don't want to get into details to avoid spoilers, but they felt satisfying to a certain extent. (To me at least, as I want dark bad ends.) And dark they were. Kirika's ending was something out of an utsuge, and Xillia's bad end was definitely a cool way to tie the "evil" side of the protagonist into the main story. That being said, they were still too short, which in turn still made me feel a bit disappointed. With how long the game is, and how much build up there is to the climax of the story, I would have wanted endings at least twice as long as the current ones, perhaps even longer.
    Still, they were pretty good, all things considered. As for the good endings, they too were well done, and even though I did not have any plans on caring much about the vanilla side of the game, I do have to admit, I felt some feels towards the end of the good routes. Sadly, these too were a bit too short as well.
    If they do make another game in the series, I hope that they finally make the endings a bit longer for that one.

    Music, art, the heroines and more.
    Like I mentioned above, the voice acting in the game is stellar. It had to be hard delivering some of the messed up lines in this game with a straight face, lol. The six demons representing the deadly sins were all handled well, and all come off as creepy and "demonic" in their own ways. I especially took a liking to Pride and Wrath, as the two really fit perfectly for the roles they are meant to fill. The VAs do a great job of bringing the "essence" of their sin into their character in their voiced lines.
    The heroines were... good and bad. While Kirika had lots of unique aspects that made her fun and different from her "counterpart" in Beat Blades Haruka, Narika, Xillia was way too similar to Haruka in my opinion. The two are basically the same, boring character, just in different settings. That being said, Xillia has a very good backstory, which makes up for some of her blandness.
    Overall, I wanted the heroines to be more unique compared to the heroines in Haruka, and found myself a bit irritated at the similarities at times. Nevertheless, the story for each heroine was done well, so it was not a complete bust. Also, Kirika's ass is just amazing. (/ω\)
    As far as the art goes, it's just great. The resolution was stepped up to HD, (Haruka's resolution was 800x600, which was a disappointment in my eyes.) The art is consistent and well drawn, and some of the CGs are truly badass. Like I mentioned before, the character designs were great, so I have no complaints about the art at all, tbh.
    I'm not really a music guy, so I can't give a detailed review of the music, so I'll just say this: I liked it a lot. There are over 30 music tracks in the game, all well fit for the scenes in which they are used. I especially liked the opening. Definitely a game I'd consider buying the OST for.
    Conclusion:
    Ixseal is much better than Haruka in my book. Pretty much everything I felt was lacking in Haruka was improved in Ixseal, (although it did not quite win me over when it came to the game's endings.) The story, characters, art, music and gameplay have all been improved, making a great overall experience.
    I rated the game an 8.4, which would have been even higher had the endings been longer, and more thought out. Still, this is a very solid game for both vanilla fans, and people like me, who likes games with darker H.
    If you're a fan of demons, angels and such, you'll definitely like this game. I am personally a sucker for anything that involves the seven deadly sins, so I was hooked from the start.
  10. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Zenophilious for a blog entry, Beat Valkyrie Ixseal Review   
    Beat Valkyrie Ixseal Review
    Choukou Shinki Ixseal, (Beat Valkyrie Ixseal), is the newest game in AliceSoft's "Beat" series. (Same universe as Beat Blades Haruka and Beat Angel Escalayer.)
    Though, while the game is set in the same universe as the other two games, it can be played without having played either of its predecessors. (The only connection to previous games is a few small references, that are not important to the story at all. In fact, I'd recommend playing this game first if you plan on playing a game in the series. I will explain why later in the review.)
    Similar to its predecessors, Ixseal is a gameplay/ VN hybrid, where you advance through a number of stages, defeating monsters along the way until you reach the area boss. Upon defeating the boss, the story progresses, and you move onto a new area. In between gameplay aspects, you see normal VN styled scenes, which makes up the bulk of the game. The game is voiced throughout all the story segments, as well as the H-scenes. The only portions of the game that are not voiced are "filler" scenes, that appear between gameplay segments, outside of the main story. These are normally only added for comic relief, and are not actually important at all, so the lack of voice acting in these scenes means quite little.

    The story
    In Ixseal you play as Oudou Tsuguhiko, a perverted man who swears he is the true "demon king," the most powerful evil being in the world. His dream is to make all female students in the world wear bloomers as their official uniform, through the use of his demonic powers. His best friend, Kirika, always brushes Tsuguhiko's talk about demons and such aside as jokes, but it turns out that he is actually telling the truth.
    With the help of his servant demon Bezel, Tsuguhiko's true power as the demon king is awakened by a dark ritual, and the power of the seven deadly sins, (the source of the demon king's power,) pours into him. The ritual is interrupted shortly after, however, as an angel with the name Xillia shows up, with the intention of killing the newborn demon king.
    Bezel and Tsuguhiko escapes, but things only go downhill from there for Tsuguhiko. He is betrayed by Bezel, who steals six of the seven deadly sins from his body, and uses them to awaken six powerful demons, leaving Tsuguhiko with nothing but the power of lust in his body. Bezel tries to take Tsuguhiko's life, but fails because of the angel, who finally catches up to them, driving Bezel away. Sadly, Tsuguhiko's friend Kirika is killed in the struggle.
    Kirika is revived by Xillia, but this takes up nearly all her power, leaving her defenseless against the demons summoned by Bezel. But, through the power of lust, which still resides within Tsuguhiko, he powers up Xillia with demonic energy, and she changes forms from an angel, into the ideal warrior in Tsuguhiko's mind— a valkyrie.

    With the power of lust, the demon king powers up Xillia through sex, and with the combination of her own power and demonic energy, she grows stronger, ready to take on Bezel's army.
    Bezel, along with six of the seven deadly sins, (in the form of powerful demons,) plan on absorbing energy from all humans, so that they can take over the world. The demons create a barrier over earth, stopping other angels from coming down from heaven to help, leaving Xillia alone.
    Now it's up to Xillia and Tsuguhiko to stop the demons' onslaught before it's too late.

    While the gameplay part of Ixseal might make it sound silly, (have sex with the heroines to make them stronger, by injecting them with your demonic energy) the story is miles better in Ixseal compared to Haruka. I'm not sure I'd call this game a nukige, actually, as the story does truly work by itself, not relying on the abundance of H at all. (Unlike Haruka, where the H content is the most appealing factor by far.) The characters are well designed and interesting, and the story is good. Lastly, the protagonist is very well done as well. He is actually powerful; he is the demon king, after all. The story is about taking back the deadly sins stolen by Bezel, powering up Tsuguhiko with each boss defeated. While he does not do the fighting himself, he does not feel like a pointless plot device. You actually feel like you are the demon king, trying to reclaim your powers, and not a can of gasoline that exists only to power up the heroines. (Like in Beat Blades Haruka.)
    Sadly, Ixseal wastes a lot of its potential by sticking to the same formula that Haruka did.
    Instead of making it possible for the player to choose how to guide the protagonist from the start, (choosing to be good or evil,) the game has it set in stone that Tsuguhiko is a good guy at heart, and he acts like the biggest vanilla-pleb in history towards his comrades, despite the fact that he is the demon king, and his objective is ultimately to reclaim his powers. Not exactly what you'd expect from the demon king.
    The story is good, but it would have been even better if there was more choices in terms of how the protagonist acts, in my opinion. The more you learn about the origin of his powers, and the history of the demons, the more you feel like making choices to impact his decisions, but you are left following the linear story until the branching point that only appears towards the end of the story.
    Another issue I found with the structure of the game is that it is very similar to Haruka at its core. While the story is different, and the characters' motivations etc also differ from that of Haruka's, it still shares enough similarities that the story can become predictable if you have played Haruka. Because of this, I would personally recommend reading Ixseal first, if you have not yet read Haruka, as the plot twists will be more surprising. And, seeing as the story is without a doubt better in Ixseal, this way you will get more enjoyment out of the game, compared to if you read Haruka first. That being said, the game is still good, and some predictability won't ruin that.

    The gameplay:
    Similar to Beat Blades Haruka, the gameplay comes in two stages. The first stage is all about buffing your heroines by sleeping with them, raising their stats in the process. Then, you advance through an area, defeating monsters, collecting power-ups, and fighting bosses.
    Each time you lose against an area boss, you see a rape scene with that boss, (with a maximum of two scenes per boss,) and the heroine's "lust" meter is filled up with one stage. (If the lust meter gets maxed out, you will get a bad ending.) These scenes can be disabled in the menu, if you do not like to see scenes of that nature. Seeing as what types of H you make your heroines do during the first phase of gameplay is up to you, you can freely choose to be evil and only see dark H, or be nice and only see vanilla. (Or do a mix of both!)


    You also have two other meters to keep an eye on. The love meter, and the demon energy meter. (Actually has a different name, but this sounds cooler!) While this might sound complicated, it is actually very simple. The love meter is raised by doing things like going on dates with the heroines, while the demon energy meter is raised by doing evil things to the heroines.
    Depending on the stats you are left with towards the end, you can choose an ending with your favored heroine.
    Just like Haruka, the boss fights can prove difficult if you do not boost the stats of the heroines properly, so do be careful there. Overall though, the difficulty has been decreased quite a lot. While I found myself failing quite a few times during my first playthrough of Haruka, I did not get a game over screen once during my first playthrough of Ixseal.

    H-scene and ending variety
    Beat Blades Haruka is known for being filled with all sorts of H-scenes, ranging from normal vanilla, to hardcore rape, beastiality and more. Ixseal also has a varied roster of H-scenes, though not as many as Haruka. (I believe Ixseal has a bit over 100, while Haruka had over 150.) But, seeing as Ixseal is more story driven than Haruka was, they might have opted for more focus on the story instead of adding extra H-scenes. But, while the game has less H-scenes, the quality has not dropped. Even the vanilla scenes are quite good, (I phrase it this way, as I did not exactly play the game for the vanilla personally.) The voice work in this game is amazing, which adds a lot to the H-scenes. There is a large variety of different H in Ixseal as well, with most scenes being very hot. So, while this might not be as nukige-ish as Haruka, it sure does have its fair share of good H, too.
    Now, the endings. I had high hopes for the Ixseal endings, especially the bad ends. The Haruka bad endings were very good, though way too short. Seeing as we are literally the demon king himself in this game, I was hoping that the bad endings would be longer, and even better than Haruka's.
    The game has six primary endings, one bad and one good for each heroine, a harem end, and a "normal" ending. You can also get other types of bad ends through the game, but these six are the main heroine endings. (For comparison, Haruka had three endings per heroine, a good, a bad and a brutal end.)
    In Ixseal, they did indeed make slightly longer endings, though they still felt too short to me. The bad ends did somewhat live up to my expectations. I don't want to get into details to avoid spoilers, but they felt satisfying to a certain extent. (To me at least, as I want dark bad ends.) And dark they were. Kirika's ending was something out of an utsuge, and Xillia's bad end was definitely a cool way to tie the "evil" side of the protagonist into the main story. That being said, they were still too short, which in turn still made me feel a bit disappointed. With how long the game is, and how much build up there is to the climax of the story, I would have wanted endings at least twice as long as the current ones, perhaps even longer.
    Still, they were pretty good, all things considered. As for the good endings, they too were well done, and even though I did not have any plans on caring much about the vanilla side of the game, I do have to admit, I felt some feels towards the end of the good routes. Sadly, these too were a bit too short as well.
    If they do make another game in the series, I hope that they finally make the endings a bit longer for that one.

    Music, art, the heroines and more.
    Like I mentioned above, the voice acting in the game is stellar. It had to be hard delivering some of the messed up lines in this game with a straight face, lol. The six demons representing the deadly sins were all handled well, and all come off as creepy and "demonic" in their own ways. I especially took a liking to Pride and Wrath, as the two really fit perfectly for the roles they are meant to fill. The VAs do a great job of bringing the "essence" of their sin into their character in their voiced lines.
    The heroines were... good and bad. While Kirika had lots of unique aspects that made her fun and different from her "counterpart" in Beat Blades Haruka, Narika, Xillia was way too similar to Haruka in my opinion. The two are basically the same, boring character, just in different settings. That being said, Xillia has a very good backstory, which makes up for some of her blandness.
    Overall, I wanted the heroines to be more unique compared to the heroines in Haruka, and found myself a bit irritated at the similarities at times. Nevertheless, the story for each heroine was done well, so it was not a complete bust. Also, Kirika's ass is just amazing. (/ω\)
    As far as the art goes, it's just great. The resolution was stepped up to HD, (Haruka's resolution was 800x600, which was a disappointment in my eyes.) The art is consistent and well drawn, and some of the CGs are truly badass. Like I mentioned before, the character designs were great, so I have no complaints about the art at all, tbh.
    I'm not really a music guy, so I can't give a detailed review of the music, so I'll just say this: I liked it a lot. There are over 30 music tracks in the game, all well fit for the scenes in which they are used. I especially liked the opening. Definitely a game I'd consider buying the OST for.
    Conclusion:
    Ixseal is much better than Haruka in my book. Pretty much everything I felt was lacking in Haruka was improved in Ixseal, (although it did not quite win me over when it came to the game's endings.) The story, characters, art, music and gameplay have all been improved, making a great overall experience.
    I rated the game an 8.4, which would have been even higher had the endings been longer, and more thought out. Still, this is a very solid game for both vanilla fans, and people like me, who likes games with darker H.
    If you're a fan of demons, angels and such, you'll definitely like this game. I am personally a sucker for anything that involves the seven deadly sins, so I was hooked from the start.
  11. Like
    Dergonu reacted to Clephas for a blog entry, Happy Birthday to Me   
    Well, as of thirty-nine minutes ago, it is officially my birthday (as of the time I checked at the beginning of making this post).  I have a lot of things to reflect on this year. 
    I am now thirty-six, settling into the beginnings of middle-age, knowing my lifestyle will probably kill me before I hit fifty. 
    I'm a sugar addict, I love fatty foods, I make my own alcoholic drinks (this year, a mixed fruit wine that actually turned out well and was much easier than the rum and hard root beer I did last year). 
    I sit on my ass eighty percent of the time, I am hugely fat...
    ... and I'm surprisingly happy.  I won't say I don't have my down moments.  Looking back, I regret not going for more athletic pursuits while my knees and back could still stand them.  I regret not trying for a more regular and less... frustrating line of work.  However, I can honestly say that, for all its frustrations, I actually seem to like being a fat, balding otaku who has pretensions at being  some kind of VN guru (lol).
    I do wish that I could fit into a plane seat, lol.  If I ever go to Japan, it is going to have to be a sea trip, since buying two plane tickets for one person is both embarrassing and more than a little expensive.
    I hate my work, but I'm good at it and, in good times, it pays well, so I keep doing it.
    So what would I change? 
    Honestly, it is hard to say.  I won't pretend I'm all love and joy when it comes to life.  I have too much toxic waste going through my brain for that (I just happened to have gained just enough maturity not to feed the trolls constantly *smiles dryly*).  I'm fundamentally a passive person once I set foot outside my hobbies, preferring not to do anything I don't absolutely have to do.  I'm also negative and misanthropic... but is that stuff I actually want to change?
    *shrugs*
    I've never been any other way, so it is impossible to say.  However, every year I hit this day and wonder what could have been, which probably says everything that needs to be said about my experiences with life, for all my proclamations of relative happiness.
     
  12. Like
    Dergonu reacted to Ranzo for a blog entry, Nurse Love Addiction: The Review   
    (Love Autopsy)
    The Setup
    Way back when I was in High School I thought I knew what I was going to be. I was destined to become a Lawyer and have my own firm. Now, almost ten years later I look at the wreckage my life has become and say; "Boy, what was I thinking?" Asuka Osachi has similar lofty goals for what she wants to do; she wants to be a Nurse. The former Jellyfish Club President found a book that she once loved as a child and written on the back is a declaration from the past. "I want to be a Nurse!" While most people would pass it off as a passing fancy, a sort of memento from the dreams of childhood. A time when things were hopeful, sweet, pure, instead of cold, bleak, and grey. Not our Auska! She takes it as a rallying cry from the past, a call to arms! Even though she has no idea why she wrote that down so long ago she is determined to become one. Which is weird isn't it? I mean my brother wanted to be a hobo when he was a kid! Can you imagine that? My brother, decides on pursing a life of vagrancy and hardship because that was his childhood dream. What I'm trying to say is that children are stupid and the purity of their dreams don't always make for advisable career options. Auska, who is a complete moron still manages to get over her first hurtle and is accepted into the prestigious Teito Nursing Academy. At her side is her ride-or-die, self titled sweet sister Nao Osachi who is determined to follow after her older sister and her stupid goal. There at the Nursing School our heroes will encounter many strange characters and face many trials. Auska just might obtain her childhood dream but she might find something else, something she was not expecting, something called, love.
    The Characters

    (From right to left Nao, Auska, Sakuya, Itsuki)
    So like I said before you are playing Auska who is a huge airhead and general goofball. At first I wasn't sure quite what to think of her. I thought she was going to be so ditsy and air-headed that she would launch into the sky. Thankfully, she was not nearly that bad and she really grew on me as the story progressed. I also like that she was at least slightly self aware and capable of some form of rational thought. That's a big plus in my book. She ended up surprising me and made for a great protagonist.
    Next up is your little sister Nao and if I had to have a favorite character I think it would be her. She is almost attached to the Auska's hip and has followed her all the way to a nursing school. Now that's dedication! She is the epitome of the adorable sister that you never knew you wanted, but what I really liked most about her were the glimpses of a different side of Nao. Such as when she would tell a ghost story, or when her delinquent past is uncovered. Those different parts really made for a great character. Just, try and stay on her good side. Okay?
    Coming in third is Sakuya who is voiced by the lovely Tamura Yukari is also a easy favorite of mine. I adored Tamura's voice in Galaxy Angel so it was a pleasant surprise to hear her here. At first Sakuya comes across as having a haughty princess like personality but as the story progresses she starts to show a much gentler side. She does still retain her biting personality though, thankfully. I liked  watching the bond between the two characters grow. Sakuya is also really good at giving hugs.
    Arriving in fourth is Itsuki and frankly she took a while for me to start liking her. I can't exactly put a finger on why but maybe it had to do with how secretive and horrendously vague she can be at times. Maybe it's just because she wears glasses. In any case, eventually her manipulative personality won me over and by the end of her route I just wanted to eat her up.
    Last but certainly not least is Kaede your teacher. She is your nursing instructor and the person you want to become. She is poised, confident, and reportedly turned down the prestigious Nightingale Award. She has a unexpectedly really adorable side to her and her route is pure cuteness.

    (How dare you make me feel things!)
    The Story
    One of the things I liked most about the story was the setting. Teito Nursing Academy was such a departure from the typical setting that I'm used to. There was evident care in making sure that this didn't become just a school life simulator. Nursing School is hard and incredibly focused and I like how real they made that aspect feel. Auska learns first hand just how hard it is when she struggles just to learn how to specially make a bed. It seemed very real to me. Of course when the characters routes take off the nursing school aspect understandably takes a backseat but it was nice to have while it was there. I also really loved how the yuri was handled in this Visual Novel. Specifically, I like how they did not treat the fact that two girls could love each other as anything strange or weird. Which was nice because a lot of times it's something that the story draws a lot of attention towards. Here, it's treated as a natural thing which I really appreciated. Each route is very different and well crafted and takes the story in many varied and often unpredictable directions.
    My Two Cents
    Overall, I loved it. I enjoyed the story, tone, characters, atmosphere, the whole kit and kaboodle. Nurse Love Addiction truly surprised me and in the best way possible. If I were to give it a score I would give it a high 8 because I had a excellent time with it all the way through. I would recommend this to anyone regardless if you are a yuri fan or not. it's just a good story and I'm sure you will enjoy it. Oh and one last thing..

  13. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Chronopolis for a blog entry, Shirogane no Soleil Review   
    Shirogane no Soleil -Successor of Wyrd- <<Unmei no Keishousha>>
    ( "The soliel of silvery-white" - Successor of Wyrd << The Fated successor >> )
     
    This is the first game in Skyfish's epic norse mythology series. I had never even heard of this game before Clephas made a blog post about it a little earlier this year, and that might be the case for many. Having finally played the game myself, I have to ask... how is this possible? Why is such a great game not more well known? This VN truly deserves more exposure than it currently has.
    Introduction:
    Shirogane starts off with our main character, Ryuuhei, and his sister Tamako on their way to a set of ancient ruins in Iceland. Ryuuhei is not an archaeologist like his sister, but was dragged along by her on the pretense of being her "bodyguard." Ironically, that is exactly what he ends up being. Ryuuhei's group gets pulled into an encounter with a strange creature called "Berserk", a monster made up by the broken soul of an ancient warrior, which fell in battle ages ago. Powerless against this incredibly dangerous foe, Ryuuhei prays for help, asking for power-- the power to protect the people he loves. His call is answered by a slumbering Valkyrie, Sol, who makes a contract with Ryuuhei. She will fight for him, in exhange for his life force. Every time she uses her powers, she drains some of Ryuuhei's life force out of his body, shortening his life. They fight off the Berserk together, but this is merely the beginning of their tale. This seemingly random encounter might not have been as random as they thought. One might even call it... fate.

    Story
    The story in Shirogane is fantastic. It's told in two parts, "Valkyrie in love", and "Successor of Wyrd." Some of the story takes place in the present, while certain other parts takes place in the past. Shirogane contains tons of refrences to norse mythology, though the descriptions of characters and events from norse mythology in the VN are not necessarily identical to the "real thing". Therefore, while familiarity with norse mythology helps with appreciating certain aspects of the game's story, it is not at all needed. What matters in terms of refrences are all explained well enough in game, and seeing as they usually put a unique spin on things, it is not at all needed to know everything there is to know about norse mythology before reading this. (That being said, knowing some of the general concepts about who is who, and what is what will certainly make it an even more enjoyable read.)

     
    Although Shirogane is a very serious story, with tragic themes riddled all over it, just like normal stories from norse mythology, the game contains a good number of humoristic slice of life moments as well. That being said, all of these moments fits very well into the flow of the story. We are seeing things from Ryuuhei's point of view, as he deals with the fact that his own life span is constantly being drained because of his contract with his Valkyrie. As a result, you feel a little more attatched to these everyday moments, since they are seen through the eyes of someone who only has so much time left to enjoy them. In addition, the comedy is pure gold most of the time. The slice of life moments very rarely feels out of place, and never gets in the way of the story. The humor in the game had me literally laughing out loud so many times, I lost count.

    Characters:
    One of the biggest strengths of this game is without a doubt the characters. Each character feels unique and is well fleshed out. They all add something to the story in their own ways, and it's hard not to grow attatched to them, be it heroes, anti-heroes or straight up villains at times. The interactions between the characters truly pulls out all sorts of emotions from the reader, making the story feel like one hell of a roller coaster ride. (In a good way. Prepare your tickets to the feel train, folks.) While the "good guys" are all very well done, my favorite characters were honestly the villains / anti-heroes that are introduced throughout the game.
    On top of making fantastic "villains", the "duos" in the game are brilliant. Essentially every single character is paired up with another in some way, and they all complement each other greatly. These "duos" were without a doubt one of the best parts about the game in my opinion. Be it heartbreaking moments or hilarious ones; nearly all the most impactful moments in the story stems from one of these duos' interactions.


    Art, Music and Writing:
    As shown in the screenshots above, the art is nicely detailed. Considering this game was released in 2007, the art is very impressive. The amount of special effects, cut-scenes and CGs is no joke either. Sadly, things aren't as good in the music department. The music is by no means bad, but it does feel a little bland at times. Certain tracks do work very well with the tone of the story, and are straight up beautiful to listen to, but others feel repetitive and aren't that impactful. So, my complaint with the music would be the inconsistent quality of the tracks. That being said, this is hardly a big issue, as the writing, art and story makes slightly repetitive music matter very little in the end.
    Overall, I have very few complaints about this game. It was a fantastic read from beginning to end, and I strongly recommend reading it. I don't use the term kamige a lot, but this definitely qualifies in my personal opinion.
    You can buy all the Soleil games on DMM. (NSFW LINK!!!)
  14. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from sanahtlig for a blog entry, Shirogane no Soleil Review   
    Shirogane no Soleil -Successor of Wyrd- <<Unmei no Keishousha>>
    ( "The soliel of silvery-white" - Successor of Wyrd << The Fated successor >> )
     
    This is the first game in Skyfish's epic norse mythology series. I had never even heard of this game before Clephas made a blog post about it a little earlier this year, and that might be the case for many. Having finally played the game myself, I have to ask... how is this possible? Why is such a great game not more well known? This VN truly deserves more exposure than it currently has.
    Introduction:
    Shirogane starts off with our main character, Ryuuhei, and his sister Tamako on their way to a set of ancient ruins in Iceland. Ryuuhei is not an archaeologist like his sister, but was dragged along by her on the pretense of being her "bodyguard." Ironically, that is exactly what he ends up being. Ryuuhei's group gets pulled into an encounter with a strange creature called "Berserk", a monster made up by the broken soul of an ancient warrior, which fell in battle ages ago. Powerless against this incredibly dangerous foe, Ryuuhei prays for help, asking for power-- the power to protect the people he loves. His call is answered by a slumbering Valkyrie, Sol, who makes a contract with Ryuuhei. She will fight for him, in exhange for his life force. Every time she uses her powers, she drains some of Ryuuhei's life force out of his body, shortening his life. They fight off the Berserk together, but this is merely the beginning of their tale. This seemingly random encounter might not have been as random as they thought. One might even call it... fate.

    Story
    The story in Shirogane is fantastic. It's told in two parts, "Valkyrie in love", and "Successor of Wyrd." Some of the story takes place in the present, while certain other parts takes place in the past. Shirogane contains tons of refrences to norse mythology, though the descriptions of characters and events from norse mythology in the VN are not necessarily identical to the "real thing". Therefore, while familiarity with norse mythology helps with appreciating certain aspects of the game's story, it is not at all needed. What matters in terms of refrences are all explained well enough in game, and seeing as they usually put a unique spin on things, it is not at all needed to know everything there is to know about norse mythology before reading this. (That being said, knowing some of the general concepts about who is who, and what is what will certainly make it an even more enjoyable read.)

     
    Although Shirogane is a very serious story, with tragic themes riddled all over it, just like normal stories from norse mythology, the game contains a good number of humoristic slice of life moments as well. That being said, all of these moments fits very well into the flow of the story. We are seeing things from Ryuuhei's point of view, as he deals with the fact that his own life span is constantly being drained because of his contract with his Valkyrie. As a result, you feel a little more attatched to these everyday moments, since they are seen through the eyes of someone who only has so much time left to enjoy them. In addition, the comedy is pure gold most of the time. The slice of life moments very rarely feels out of place, and never gets in the way of the story. The humor in the game had me literally laughing out loud so many times, I lost count.

    Characters:
    One of the biggest strengths of this game is without a doubt the characters. Each character feels unique and is well fleshed out. They all add something to the story in their own ways, and it's hard not to grow attatched to them, be it heroes, anti-heroes or straight up villains at times. The interactions between the characters truly pulls out all sorts of emotions from the reader, making the story feel like one hell of a roller coaster ride. (In a good way. Prepare your tickets to the feel train, folks.) While the "good guys" are all very well done, my favorite characters were honestly the villains / anti-heroes that are introduced throughout the game.
    On top of making fantastic "villains", the "duos" in the game are brilliant. Essentially every single character is paired up with another in some way, and they all complement each other greatly. These "duos" were without a doubt one of the best parts about the game in my opinion. Be it heartbreaking moments or hilarious ones; nearly all the most impactful moments in the story stems from one of these duos' interactions.


    Art, Music and Writing:
    As shown in the screenshots above, the art is nicely detailed. Considering this game was released in 2007, the art is very impressive. The amount of special effects, cut-scenes and CGs is no joke either. Sadly, things aren't as good in the music department. The music is by no means bad, but it does feel a little bland at times. Certain tracks do work very well with the tone of the story, and are straight up beautiful to listen to, but others feel repetitive and aren't that impactful. So, my complaint with the music would be the inconsistent quality of the tracks. That being said, this is hardly a big issue, as the writing, art and story makes slightly repetitive music matter very little in the end.
    Overall, I have very few complaints about this game. It was a fantastic read from beginning to end, and I strongly recommend reading it. I don't use the term kamige a lot, but this definitely qualifies in my personal opinion.
    You can buy all the Soleil games on DMM. (NSFW LINK!!!)
  15. Thanks
    Dergonu got a reaction from Tyr for a blog entry, Shirogane no Soleil Review   
    Shirogane no Soleil -Successor of Wyrd- <<Unmei no Keishousha>>
    ( "The soliel of silvery-white" - Successor of Wyrd << The Fated successor >> )
     
    This is the first game in Skyfish's epic norse mythology series. I had never even heard of this game before Clephas made a blog post about it a little earlier this year, and that might be the case for many. Having finally played the game myself, I have to ask... how is this possible? Why is such a great game not more well known? This VN truly deserves more exposure than it currently has.
    Introduction:
    Shirogane starts off with our main character, Ryuuhei, and his sister Tamako on their way to a set of ancient ruins in Iceland. Ryuuhei is not an archaeologist like his sister, but was dragged along by her on the pretense of being her "bodyguard." Ironically, that is exactly what he ends up being. Ryuuhei's group gets pulled into an encounter with a strange creature called "Berserk", a monster made up by the broken soul of an ancient warrior, which fell in battle ages ago. Powerless against this incredibly dangerous foe, Ryuuhei prays for help, asking for power-- the power to protect the people he loves. His call is answered by a slumbering Valkyrie, Sol, who makes a contract with Ryuuhei. She will fight for him, in exhange for his life force. Every time she uses her powers, she drains some of Ryuuhei's life force out of his body, shortening his life. They fight off the Berserk together, but this is merely the beginning of their tale. This seemingly random encounter might not have been as random as they thought. One might even call it... fate.

    Story
    The story in Shirogane is fantastic. It's told in two parts, "Valkyrie in love", and "Successor of Wyrd." Some of the story takes place in the present, while certain other parts takes place in the past. Shirogane contains tons of refrences to norse mythology, though the descriptions of characters and events from norse mythology in the VN are not necessarily identical to the "real thing". Therefore, while familiarity with norse mythology helps with appreciating certain aspects of the game's story, it is not at all needed. What matters in terms of refrences are all explained well enough in game, and seeing as they usually put a unique spin on things, it is not at all needed to know everything there is to know about norse mythology before reading this. (That being said, knowing some of the general concepts about who is who, and what is what will certainly make it an even more enjoyable read.)

     
    Although Shirogane is a very serious story, with tragic themes riddled all over it, just like normal stories from norse mythology, the game contains a good number of humoristic slice of life moments as well. That being said, all of these moments fits very well into the flow of the story. We are seeing things from Ryuuhei's point of view, as he deals with the fact that his own life span is constantly being drained because of his contract with his Valkyrie. As a result, you feel a little more attatched to these everyday moments, since they are seen through the eyes of someone who only has so much time left to enjoy them. In addition, the comedy is pure gold most of the time. The slice of life moments very rarely feels out of place, and never gets in the way of the story. The humor in the game had me literally laughing out loud so many times, I lost count.

    Characters:
    One of the biggest strengths of this game is without a doubt the characters. Each character feels unique and is well fleshed out. They all add something to the story in their own ways, and it's hard not to grow attatched to them, be it heroes, anti-heroes or straight up villains at times. The interactions between the characters truly pulls out all sorts of emotions from the reader, making the story feel like one hell of a roller coaster ride. (In a good way. Prepare your tickets to the feel train, folks.) While the "good guys" are all very well done, my favorite characters were honestly the villains / anti-heroes that are introduced throughout the game.
    On top of making fantastic "villains", the "duos" in the game are brilliant. Essentially every single character is paired up with another in some way, and they all complement each other greatly. These "duos" were without a doubt one of the best parts about the game in my opinion. Be it heartbreaking moments or hilarious ones; nearly all the most impactful moments in the story stems from one of these duos' interactions.


    Art, Music and Writing:
    As shown in the screenshots above, the art is nicely detailed. Considering this game was released in 2007, the art is very impressive. The amount of special effects, cut-scenes and CGs is no joke either. Sadly, things aren't as good in the music department. The music is by no means bad, but it does feel a little bland at times. Certain tracks do work very well with the tone of the story, and are straight up beautiful to listen to, but others feel repetitive and aren't that impactful. So, my complaint with the music would be the inconsistent quality of the tracks. That being said, this is hardly a big issue, as the writing, art and story makes slightly repetitive music matter very little in the end.
    Overall, I have very few complaints about this game. It was a fantastic read from beginning to end, and I strongly recommend reading it. I don't use the term kamige a lot, but this definitely qualifies in my personal opinion.
    You can buy all the Soleil games on DMM. (NSFW LINK!!!)
  16. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from MaggieROBOT for a blog entry, Shirogane no Soleil Review   
    Shirogane no Soleil -Successor of Wyrd- <<Unmei no Keishousha>>
    ( "The soliel of silvery-white" - Successor of Wyrd << The Fated successor >> )
     
    This is the first game in Skyfish's epic norse mythology series. I had never even heard of this game before Clephas made a blog post about it a little earlier this year, and that might be the case for many. Having finally played the game myself, I have to ask... how is this possible? Why is such a great game not more well known? This VN truly deserves more exposure than it currently has.
    Introduction:
    Shirogane starts off with our main character, Ryuuhei, and his sister Tamako on their way to a set of ancient ruins in Iceland. Ryuuhei is not an archaeologist like his sister, but was dragged along by her on the pretense of being her "bodyguard." Ironically, that is exactly what he ends up being. Ryuuhei's group gets pulled into an encounter with a strange creature called "Berserk", a monster made up by the broken soul of an ancient warrior, which fell in battle ages ago. Powerless against this incredibly dangerous foe, Ryuuhei prays for help, asking for power-- the power to protect the people he loves. His call is answered by a slumbering Valkyrie, Sol, who makes a contract with Ryuuhei. She will fight for him, in exhange for his life force. Every time she uses her powers, she drains some of Ryuuhei's life force out of his body, shortening his life. They fight off the Berserk together, but this is merely the beginning of their tale. This seemingly random encounter might not have been as random as they thought. One might even call it... fate.

    Story
    The story in Shirogane is fantastic. It's told in two parts, "Valkyrie in love", and "Successor of Wyrd." Some of the story takes place in the present, while certain other parts takes place in the past. Shirogane contains tons of refrences to norse mythology, though the descriptions of characters and events from norse mythology in the VN are not necessarily identical to the "real thing". Therefore, while familiarity with norse mythology helps with appreciating certain aspects of the game's story, it is not at all needed. What matters in terms of refrences are all explained well enough in game, and seeing as they usually put a unique spin on things, it is not at all needed to know everything there is to know about norse mythology before reading this. (That being said, knowing some of the general concepts about who is who, and what is what will certainly make it an even more enjoyable read.)

     
    Although Shirogane is a very serious story, with tragic themes riddled all over it, just like normal stories from norse mythology, the game contains a good number of humoristic slice of life moments as well. That being said, all of these moments fits very well into the flow of the story. We are seeing things from Ryuuhei's point of view, as he deals with the fact that his own life span is constantly being drained because of his contract with his Valkyrie. As a result, you feel a little more attatched to these everyday moments, since they are seen through the eyes of someone who only has so much time left to enjoy them. In addition, the comedy is pure gold most of the time. The slice of life moments very rarely feels out of place, and never gets in the way of the story. The humor in the game had me literally laughing out loud so many times, I lost count.

    Characters:
    One of the biggest strengths of this game is without a doubt the characters. Each character feels unique and is well fleshed out. They all add something to the story in their own ways, and it's hard not to grow attatched to them, be it heroes, anti-heroes or straight up villains at times. The interactions between the characters truly pulls out all sorts of emotions from the reader, making the story feel like one hell of a roller coaster ride. (In a good way. Prepare your tickets to the feel train, folks.) While the "good guys" are all very well done, my favorite characters were honestly the villains / anti-heroes that are introduced throughout the game.
    On top of making fantastic "villains", the "duos" in the game are brilliant. Essentially every single character is paired up with another in some way, and they all complement each other greatly. These "duos" were without a doubt one of the best parts about the game in my opinion. Be it heartbreaking moments or hilarious ones; nearly all the most impactful moments in the story stems from one of these duos' interactions.


    Art, Music and Writing:
    As shown in the screenshots above, the art is nicely detailed. Considering this game was released in 2007, the art is very impressive. The amount of special effects, cut-scenes and CGs is no joke either. Sadly, things aren't as good in the music department. The music is by no means bad, but it does feel a little bland at times. Certain tracks do work very well with the tone of the story, and are straight up beautiful to listen to, but others feel repetitive and aren't that impactful. So, my complaint with the music would be the inconsistent quality of the tracks. That being said, this is hardly a big issue, as the writing, art and story makes slightly repetitive music matter very little in the end.
    Overall, I have very few complaints about this game. It was a fantastic read from beginning to end, and I strongly recommend reading it. I don't use the term kamige a lot, but this definitely qualifies in my personal opinion.
    You can buy all the Soleil games on DMM. (NSFW LINK!!!)
  17. Like
    Dergonu reacted to Clephas for a blog entry, Bakumatsu Jinchuu Houkoku Resshiden Miburo   
    This is the third game in the series that began with Chuusingura (please don't judge that particular work by the utterly shitty translation).  I do highly recommend that you play both Chuusingura and Bushi no Kodou before you play this game, because it is necessary to fully understand some of the events that occur (particularly in the true Hijikata ending).
    First, a bit of background about the Bakumatsu period.  Essentially, after Admiral Perry forced open Japan with the threat of his cannons, the Bakufu (also known as the Tokugawa Shogunate), was forced to sign the usual set of unequal treaties Western nations forced on Eastern ones with less advanced tech during that period of history.  Japan's peculiar double-headed political structure at the time, with the Emperor 'lending' his authority to the Shogun of the time in order to rule Japan and the then-emperor's stated wish for the exclusion of foreigners lent anti-Tokugawa factions and ambitious feudal lords the justification they needed (mostly to convince their followers) to start moving against the Bakufu.
    This was made worse when one of these factions succeeded in assassinating Chancellor Ii, who directed the political purges and authoritarian political moves of the Bakufu immediately following Perry's actions.  This gave others the idea to do similar things to anyone they saw as supporting the Bakufu, and Kyouto became the center of a bloody series of assassinations of officials and merchants who sided with the existing authority or benefited from foreign contacts. 
    The Aizu Clan, which was given the authority and rather nasty job of bringing peace to Kyouto, recruited ronin (masterless samurai) in order to form a police force that would capture or execute the other ronin making trouble in the city.  This resulted in the formation of the Roushigumi, which later became the Shinsengumi seen in Hakuoki, Peacemaker Kurogane, and the Rurounin Kenshin OVAs (Saitou Hajime in the main series was also a member). 
    Historically, the Shinsengumi, despite having suffered a number of internal disputes and factional splits in the years leading up to the fall of the Bakufu, were amongst the few who fought to the end against the new government, and Hijikata Toshizou's final death and his death poem are one of the most incredibly romanticized objects amongst samurai-loving weaboos of the classic stripe.  Some left-leaning history buffs in Japan blame the romanticization of the Shinsengumi and the characters from Chuusingura for the intense rise in nationalism and insane glorification of samurai culture that occurred leading up to WWII. 
    Now down to business... it should be stated that this game is about fifteen times more violent than Chuusingura was.  The protagonist and other members of the Shinsengumi killed people on a daily basis with swords in broad daylight, and they don't really hold back when it comes to portraying that. 
    This game is also just as long as Chusingura (maybe slightly longer) was, despite being essentially one long path for most of its length (with about a third of it devoted to individual paths).  This is because the story covers about six years worth of chaotic events, both political and personal.  Going into this game with a full knowledge of the fates of the Shinsengumi members, I couldn't help but wish some of their fates would be changed (hint: of the original membership, only Saitou Hajime and Shinpachi live to see old age), and there are a lot of characters I honestly wept for... no matter what game I see him/her in, Sakamoto Ryouma is always an admirable character and seeing the pointless deaths of a number of clear-eyed individuals with an eye toward the future is just as bad.  However, this game follows history to the end in the Hijikata path and for most of the game otherwise... and while the Shinsengumi might be cultural icons now, their lives were colored with blood and tragedy.
    There are four main paths, three side-paths (paths for heroines that die or are otherwise separated from the main cast for some reason), and one true path (Hijikata Ending 2).  The main paths include Okita Souji, Kondou Isami, Hajime Saitou, and Hijikata Toshizou.  Okita's path... well, if you've seen any of the many anime (except Gintama) where he pops up, you'll know what I mean when I say it ends on a sad and somewhat empty note.  Kondou Isami's path is marginally better (if you know about Kondou's historic fate, it is nice to see it changed).  Saitou's path is significantly better and more detailed, as are the three side-paths (which is somewhat ironic).  Hijikata's paths are, of course, the most complete-feeling and satisfying, though the first one left me in tears for a solid ten minutes.
    This game does have some major flaws... there was an obvious history buff's obsession with detail when it came to portraying a lot of the historical events involved, and that aspect could start to feel interminable in the space between the story's main turning point and the heroine paths.  However, I found myself willing to forgive that flaw in the end.
    Overall, this was an excellent story, and it takes relatively few liberties with history (beyond feminization of historical figures), which is unusual in Shinsengumi portrayals.  The most unusual aspect of the game (the protagonist's ability) was mostly a dormant issue for the greater part of the game, so it often left me with a nice illusion that I was seeing through the eyes of a real Shinsengumi member. 
    I was surprised at one revelation in the true ending, though...
     
    HUGE SPOILERS
     
  18. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Dreamysyu for a blog entry, My Favorite VN Releases of 2017   
    2017 has been a pretty cool year in terms of VN releases. I'm not even close to Clephas' level of reading, so I have only scratched the surface of what was released this year, but I did still read what I think is a pretty decent chunk of VNs, and now that the year is coming to a close, I'd like to go through some those games and talk about which ones I liked the most etc. This blog post will only cover NEW releases in 2017. I might make a separate blog post about VNs that weren't released in 2017, but that I still read this year later on.
     
    I started the year with Ryuu Kishi Bloody Saga, a cool fantasty game by Akabeisoft 3. The prequel to this game was a dark nukige-ish story, which didn't really impress me. But, Ryuu Kishi went into a completely different direction, and ended up being a really entertaining read. I wrote a blog post about Ryuu Kishi around the time I finished it, so I'll link that here if anyone wants to read it.
    Summing up though, Ryuu Kishi is a good fantasty VN, with great action scenes, an interesting plot, and good romance. (With a functional harem aspect, which was interesting.) It's by no means a kamige, but it was definitely among the better games released this year in my opinion.
    After this I played a few games, but none of them were anything special. Amanatsu Adolescence had some aspects I liked, but fell flat on its face with the heroine routes, which was disappointing.
    The next game worth mentioning is Majo to Tsurugi to Sen no Tsuki. This was my first time playing one of Kai's Mahou Shoujo games, and the only reason I picked this one up was because Ban'ya had helped write it. (I love Ban'ya's stuff.)
    The game honestly blew me away. I'm not saying it's a kamige or anything, (not by a long shot,) but considering that this is meant to be a nukige, it really went beyond my expectations. The story was legitimately interesting, the characters were great and the writing was satisfying. Reading this game made me interested in checking out the rest of the works in the series, which I'll get around to reading at some point. Hopefully they are similar in structure, as I took quite the liking to the way this game's structure. You basically have a nukige with a story, where making the right choices lets you skip most of the H-scenes, and move through the true route. But, if you make the wrong choice, you are thrown down "bad routes", filled with bad endings and H-scenes. So, depending on what mood you're in, you can choose what type of game you're playing, essentially. (There are of course still a decent number of H-scenes in the true route, but the bulk of them are in the bad routes.)
    My review of this game can be found here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Now, next on the list is Chrono Box, and well, I'm just going to come out and say it right away: This game is amazing. It's without a doubt one of my favorite VNs of all time. Actually, it's tied for 1st place with the ChuSinGura series.
    I went into the game without knowing much about the story, and I got sucked into the game right away, finishing the whole thing in about 4-5 days. (Considering it's a rather hard game to read in Japanese, that's pretty crazy fast for me.) The ratings on VNDB aren't the best, which is to be expected tbh. It's a hard game to read, and it's a denpa game where every single small detail matters. I'd imagine a chunk of VNDB votes comes from people who try reading JP games with machine translations, and well, that is not recommended for this game. In fact, there are many parts of the game that cannot be hooked, as they are either in image files in the game itself, or in voiced lines without any text. In addition, it's a game with some pretty dark content here and there, and I know some people just rate games badly because of that. (This is a story driven mystery/denpa game, and similar to SubaHibi, all the dark elements are there for a reason, driving the story forward.) I don't mean to come off as an elitist saying "EOP's opinions doesn't matter!" here, by the way. I do think the difficulty of the game, and the content in it might have caused a bit of a change in the votes from English readers, though. In comparison, the game is rated very highly on EGS, being #23 of the whole year so far, (and it also has a rather high amount of votes, in comparison to some games above it on the list, which just has a handful. Like, seriously, 2 of the games on the list only have 5-6 votes, kek.)
    Overall, this is just a fantastic read. I strongly recommend it to anyone who can read it. It truly just blew my mind. If you ARE going to read it, do yourself a favor: Do NOT look up anything about it. No CGs, no story summaries, no nothing. Just go in blind, and enjoy the ride. Seriously, you have no idea what's in store for you.
     
    Moving on from Chrono Box, we have Pure Song Garden, the first "normal" charage I played this year that I feel deserves a spot among the "better" releases I've read in 2017. This is Pulltop's newest "club-themed game", similar to Konosora and Miagete Goran, focusing on a future world where AI and VR has become an important part of our lives. It has fantastic romance, (in the true route at least; I have to admit, I skipped the other routes for the true route. It was all I wanted,) the story is surprisingly good, and the characters aren't just stereotypes, like they tend to be in similar games. Suzu and Iroha, the characters with the main focus in the true route, definitely makes the game worth it by themselves. The MC also isn't bad, though I do wish they added a bit more to his backstory. They introduced an interesting conflict with him, which just kind of resolved itself rather quickly, something that irked me a bit. But, definitely a solid game overall.
    You can read more of my opinions on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Finally we have Biman 4. This was my first Biman title, and I didn't really know what to expect of the game. And honestly, I was blown away by it. The writing was fantastic, and felt nearly poetic at times, even. The drama was well handled, and some of the scenes made me take a break from the game for a bit, as they made me feel so many different emotions. These scenes were so well done.
    At the end of the day, the game is still a nukige, and I won't call it a kamige or anything, but man, this game is so much more than first meets the eye. Almost makes me sad that it's a nukige, as there could have been even more potential there had it been a little longer, and a little more story focused.
    Either way, this is another truly good VN that I strongly recommend people read. Also, it's completely possible to read it without having read the other Biman games, just like I did.
    You can read some more details about my opinion on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Overall, this has been a great year with many solid releases. My backlog still has a good chunk of the games that came out this year, many of which might have made it on this list, if I had the time to read them. But, oh well. I'm still happy with the amount of VNs I got done this year, and look forward to seeing what 2018 has in store for us.
  19. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Narcosis for a blog entry, My Favorite VN Releases of 2017   
    2017 has been a pretty cool year in terms of VN releases. I'm not even close to Clephas' level of reading, so I have only scratched the surface of what was released this year, but I did still read what I think is a pretty decent chunk of VNs, and now that the year is coming to a close, I'd like to go through some those games and talk about which ones I liked the most etc. This blog post will only cover NEW releases in 2017. I might make a separate blog post about VNs that weren't released in 2017, but that I still read this year later on.
     
    I started the year with Ryuu Kishi Bloody Saga, a cool fantasty game by Akabeisoft 3. The prequel to this game was a dark nukige-ish story, which didn't really impress me. But, Ryuu Kishi went into a completely different direction, and ended up being a really entertaining read. I wrote a blog post about Ryuu Kishi around the time I finished it, so I'll link that here if anyone wants to read it.
    Summing up though, Ryuu Kishi is a good fantasty VN, with great action scenes, an interesting plot, and good romance. (With a functional harem aspect, which was interesting.) It's by no means a kamige, but it was definitely among the better games released this year in my opinion.
    After this I played a few games, but none of them were anything special. Amanatsu Adolescence had some aspects I liked, but fell flat on its face with the heroine routes, which was disappointing.
    The next game worth mentioning is Majo to Tsurugi to Sen no Tsuki. This was my first time playing one of Kai's Mahou Shoujo games, and the only reason I picked this one up was because Ban'ya had helped write it. (I love Ban'ya's stuff.)
    The game honestly blew me away. I'm not saying it's a kamige or anything, (not by a long shot,) but considering that this is meant to be a nukige, it really went beyond my expectations. The story was legitimately interesting, the characters were great and the writing was satisfying. Reading this game made me interested in checking out the rest of the works in the series, which I'll get around to reading at some point. Hopefully they are similar in structure, as I took quite the liking to the way this game's structure. You basically have a nukige with a story, where making the right choices lets you skip most of the H-scenes, and move through the true route. But, if you make the wrong choice, you are thrown down "bad routes", filled with bad endings and H-scenes. So, depending on what mood you're in, you can choose what type of game you're playing, essentially. (There are of course still a decent number of H-scenes in the true route, but the bulk of them are in the bad routes.)
    My review of this game can be found here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Now, next on the list is Chrono Box, and well, I'm just going to come out and say it right away: This game is amazing. It's without a doubt one of my favorite VNs of all time. Actually, it's tied for 1st place with the ChuSinGura series.
    I went into the game without knowing much about the story, and I got sucked into the game right away, finishing the whole thing in about 4-5 days. (Considering it's a rather hard game to read in Japanese, that's pretty crazy fast for me.) The ratings on VNDB aren't the best, which is to be expected tbh. It's a hard game to read, and it's a denpa game where every single small detail matters. I'd imagine a chunk of VNDB votes comes from people who try reading JP games with machine translations, and well, that is not recommended for this game. In fact, there are many parts of the game that cannot be hooked, as they are either in image files in the game itself, or in voiced lines without any text. In addition, it's a game with some pretty dark content here and there, and I know some people just rate games badly because of that. (This is a story driven mystery/denpa game, and similar to SubaHibi, all the dark elements are there for a reason, driving the story forward.) I don't mean to come off as an elitist saying "EOP's opinions doesn't matter!" here, by the way. I do think the difficulty of the game, and the content in it might have caused a bit of a change in the votes from English readers, though. In comparison, the game is rated very highly on EGS, being #23 of the whole year so far, (and it also has a rather high amount of votes, in comparison to some games above it on the list, which just has a handful. Like, seriously, 2 of the games on the list only have 5-6 votes, kek.)
    Overall, this is just a fantastic read. I strongly recommend it to anyone who can read it. It truly just blew my mind. If you ARE going to read it, do yourself a favor: Do NOT look up anything about it. No CGs, no story summaries, no nothing. Just go in blind, and enjoy the ride. Seriously, you have no idea what's in store for you.
     
    Moving on from Chrono Box, we have Pure Song Garden, the first "normal" charage I played this year that I feel deserves a spot among the "better" releases I've read in 2017. This is Pulltop's newest "club-themed game", similar to Konosora and Miagete Goran, focusing on a future world where AI and VR has become an important part of our lives. It has fantastic romance, (in the true route at least; I have to admit, I skipped the other routes for the true route. It was all I wanted,) the story is surprisingly good, and the characters aren't just stereotypes, like they tend to be in similar games. Suzu and Iroha, the characters with the main focus in the true route, definitely makes the game worth it by themselves. The MC also isn't bad, though I do wish they added a bit more to his backstory. They introduced an interesting conflict with him, which just kind of resolved itself rather quickly, something that irked me a bit. But, definitely a solid game overall.
    You can read more of my opinions on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Finally we have Biman 4. This was my first Biman title, and I didn't really know what to expect of the game. And honestly, I was blown away by it. The writing was fantastic, and felt nearly poetic at times, even. The drama was well handled, and some of the scenes made me take a break from the game for a bit, as they made me feel so many different emotions. These scenes were so well done.
    At the end of the day, the game is still a nukige, and I won't call it a kamige or anything, but man, this game is so much more than first meets the eye. Almost makes me sad that it's a nukige, as there could have been even more potential there had it been a little longer, and a little more story focused.
    Either way, this is another truly good VN that I strongly recommend people read. Also, it's completely possible to read it without having read the other Biman games, just like I did.
    You can read some more details about my opinion on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Overall, this has been a great year with many solid releases. My backlog still has a good chunk of the games that came out this year, many of which might have made it on this list, if I had the time to read them. But, oh well. I'm still happy with the amount of VNs I got done this year, and look forward to seeing what 2018 has in store for us.
  20. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from melo4496 for a blog entry, My Favorite VN Releases of 2017   
    2017 has been a pretty cool year in terms of VN releases. I'm not even close to Clephas' level of reading, so I have only scratched the surface of what was released this year, but I did still read what I think is a pretty decent chunk of VNs, and now that the year is coming to a close, I'd like to go through some those games and talk about which ones I liked the most etc. This blog post will only cover NEW releases in 2017. I might make a separate blog post about VNs that weren't released in 2017, but that I still read this year later on.
     
    I started the year with Ryuu Kishi Bloody Saga, a cool fantasty game by Akabeisoft 3. The prequel to this game was a dark nukige-ish story, which didn't really impress me. But, Ryuu Kishi went into a completely different direction, and ended up being a really entertaining read. I wrote a blog post about Ryuu Kishi around the time I finished it, so I'll link that here if anyone wants to read it.
    Summing up though, Ryuu Kishi is a good fantasty VN, with great action scenes, an interesting plot, and good romance. (With a functional harem aspect, which was interesting.) It's by no means a kamige, but it was definitely among the better games released this year in my opinion.
    After this I played a few games, but none of them were anything special. Amanatsu Adolescence had some aspects I liked, but fell flat on its face with the heroine routes, which was disappointing.
    The next game worth mentioning is Majo to Tsurugi to Sen no Tsuki. This was my first time playing one of Kai's Mahou Shoujo games, and the only reason I picked this one up was because Ban'ya had helped write it. (I love Ban'ya's stuff.)
    The game honestly blew me away. I'm not saying it's a kamige or anything, (not by a long shot,) but considering that this is meant to be a nukige, it really went beyond my expectations. The story was legitimately interesting, the characters were great and the writing was satisfying. Reading this game made me interested in checking out the rest of the works in the series, which I'll get around to reading at some point. Hopefully they are similar in structure, as I took quite the liking to the way this game's structure. You basically have a nukige with a story, where making the right choices lets you skip most of the H-scenes, and move through the true route. But, if you make the wrong choice, you are thrown down "bad routes", filled with bad endings and H-scenes. So, depending on what mood you're in, you can choose what type of game you're playing, essentially. (There are of course still a decent number of H-scenes in the true route, but the bulk of them are in the bad routes.)
    My review of this game can be found here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Now, next on the list is Chrono Box, and well, I'm just going to come out and say it right away: This game is amazing. It's without a doubt one of my favorite VNs of all time. Actually, it's tied for 1st place with the ChuSinGura series.
    I went into the game without knowing much about the story, and I got sucked into the game right away, finishing the whole thing in about 4-5 days. (Considering it's a rather hard game to read in Japanese, that's pretty crazy fast for me.) The ratings on VNDB aren't the best, which is to be expected tbh. It's a hard game to read, and it's a denpa game where every single small detail matters. I'd imagine a chunk of VNDB votes comes from people who try reading JP games with machine translations, and well, that is not recommended for this game. In fact, there are many parts of the game that cannot be hooked, as they are either in image files in the game itself, or in voiced lines without any text. In addition, it's a game with some pretty dark content here and there, and I know some people just rate games badly because of that. (This is a story driven mystery/denpa game, and similar to SubaHibi, all the dark elements are there for a reason, driving the story forward.) I don't mean to come off as an elitist saying "EOP's opinions doesn't matter!" here, by the way. I do think the difficulty of the game, and the content in it might have caused a bit of a change in the votes from English readers, though. In comparison, the game is rated very highly on EGS, being #23 of the whole year so far, (and it also has a rather high amount of votes, in comparison to some games above it on the list, which just has a handful. Like, seriously, 2 of the games on the list only have 5-6 votes, kek.)
    Overall, this is just a fantastic read. I strongly recommend it to anyone who can read it. It truly just blew my mind. If you ARE going to read it, do yourself a favor: Do NOT look up anything about it. No CGs, no story summaries, no nothing. Just go in blind, and enjoy the ride. Seriously, you have no idea what's in store for you.
     
    Moving on from Chrono Box, we have Pure Song Garden, the first "normal" charage I played this year that I feel deserves a spot among the "better" releases I've read in 2017. This is Pulltop's newest "club-themed game", similar to Konosora and Miagete Goran, focusing on a future world where AI and VR has become an important part of our lives. It has fantastic romance, (in the true route at least; I have to admit, I skipped the other routes for the true route. It was all I wanted,) the story is surprisingly good, and the characters aren't just stereotypes, like they tend to be in similar games. Suzu and Iroha, the characters with the main focus in the true route, definitely makes the game worth it by themselves. The MC also isn't bad, though I do wish they added a bit more to his backstory. They introduced an interesting conflict with him, which just kind of resolved itself rather quickly, something that irked me a bit. But, definitely a solid game overall.
    You can read more of my opinions on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Finally we have Biman 4. This was my first Biman title, and I didn't really know what to expect of the game. And honestly, I was blown away by it. The writing was fantastic, and felt nearly poetic at times, even. The drama was well handled, and some of the scenes made me take a break from the game for a bit, as they made me feel so many different emotions. These scenes were so well done.
    At the end of the day, the game is still a nukige, and I won't call it a kamige or anything, but man, this game is so much more than first meets the eye. Almost makes me sad that it's a nukige, as there could have been even more potential there had it been a little longer, and a little more story focused.
    Either way, this is another truly good VN that I strongly recommend people read. Also, it's completely possible to read it without having read the other Biman games, just like I did.
    You can read some more details about my opinion on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Overall, this has been a great year with many solid releases. My backlog still has a good chunk of the games that came out this year, many of which might have made it on this list, if I had the time to read them. But, oh well. I'm still happy with the amount of VNs I got done this year, and look forward to seeing what 2018 has in store for us.
  21. Like
    Dergonu reacted to Clephas for a blog entry, Nemurenu Hitsuji to Kodoku na Ookami -A Tale of Love, and Cutthroat-   
    First, a short intro... this is the second Clock Up game where Kurashiki Tatsuya (one of Light's second team of writers) has been involved, and those who played the previous one, Maggot Baits, will recognize the atmosphere and 'flavor' of the story instantly.  This is a game devoid of salvation in any real sense.  The protagonist and the other characters are universally the scum of the Earth (Mirei being the only exception, though she is a bit screwy too), and their lifestyles and pasts range from the distasteful to the outright disgusting.
    While there are relatively few of the violent h-scenes that defined Maggot Baits, they do exist, so I do feel a need to warn you that a lot of the content in this game is graphic and not for those with a weak stomach. 
    The protagonist (who never reveals his true name in the entire story) is a professional killer who needs to kill people in order to sleep (it is more interesting if you read it yourself, so I won't go into detail).  One day, he gets the order to investigate/find the killer of a paparazzi killed at the love hotel at which he works most of the time.  What he finds is... Azami, a serial killer, whom he gets into combat with immediately.  The end result of the battle is them having sex... and her getting obsessed with/attached to him.  He returns the obsession in part due to the fact that, after having sex with her, he can sleep.
    I'll be blunt, there is no point in this game where the characters can really be said to 'shine'.  There are three endings, two of which are different based on how the protagonist pursues his relationship with Azami.  The final path, the true path, brings their relationship to the final stage (visibly inevitable, if you get to know Azami), and you are presented by a predictably depressing ending.
    This game has excellent writing, which goes without saying really, since it is done by Kurashiki Tatsuya.  However, the unending dark atmosphere that infuses the story is energy-draining in the extreme.  This is made worse by this general sense that the game is just trying to say 'humans are worthless' throughout its entire length.  While the battle scenes are excellent, there were too many points in the story where cruel turns of event occurred simply to push things forward or to titillate the reader.  This was true of Maggot Baits as well, but this game lacks the 'sort of good ending' you saw in that one, which gave you a sense of satisfaction, even if it was only in comparison to the rest of the game.
  22. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from HMN for a blog entry, My Favorite VN Releases of 2017   
    2017 has been a pretty cool year in terms of VN releases. I'm not even close to Clephas' level of reading, so I have only scratched the surface of what was released this year, but I did still read what I think is a pretty decent chunk of VNs, and now that the year is coming to a close, I'd like to go through some those games and talk about which ones I liked the most etc. This blog post will only cover NEW releases in 2017. I might make a separate blog post about VNs that weren't released in 2017, but that I still read this year later on.
     
    I started the year with Ryuu Kishi Bloody Saga, a cool fantasty game by Akabeisoft 3. The prequel to this game was a dark nukige-ish story, which didn't really impress me. But, Ryuu Kishi went into a completely different direction, and ended up being a really entertaining read. I wrote a blog post about Ryuu Kishi around the time I finished it, so I'll link that here if anyone wants to read it.
    Summing up though, Ryuu Kishi is a good fantasty VN, with great action scenes, an interesting plot, and good romance. (With a functional harem aspect, which was interesting.) It's by no means a kamige, but it was definitely among the better games released this year in my opinion.
    After this I played a few games, but none of them were anything special. Amanatsu Adolescence had some aspects I liked, but fell flat on its face with the heroine routes, which was disappointing.
    The next game worth mentioning is Majo to Tsurugi to Sen no Tsuki. This was my first time playing one of Kai's Mahou Shoujo games, and the only reason I picked this one up was because Ban'ya had helped write it. (I love Ban'ya's stuff.)
    The game honestly blew me away. I'm not saying it's a kamige or anything, (not by a long shot,) but considering that this is meant to be a nukige, it really went beyond my expectations. The story was legitimately interesting, the characters were great and the writing was satisfying. Reading this game made me interested in checking out the rest of the works in the series, which I'll get around to reading at some point. Hopefully they are similar in structure, as I took quite the liking to the way this game's structure. You basically have a nukige with a story, where making the right choices lets you skip most of the H-scenes, and move through the true route. But, if you make the wrong choice, you are thrown down "bad routes", filled with bad endings and H-scenes. So, depending on what mood you're in, you can choose what type of game you're playing, essentially. (There are of course still a decent number of H-scenes in the true route, but the bulk of them are in the bad routes.)
    My review of this game can be found here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Now, next on the list is Chrono Box, and well, I'm just going to come out and say it right away: This game is amazing. It's without a doubt one of my favorite VNs of all time. Actually, it's tied for 1st place with the ChuSinGura series.
    I went into the game without knowing much about the story, and I got sucked into the game right away, finishing the whole thing in about 4-5 days. (Considering it's a rather hard game to read in Japanese, that's pretty crazy fast for me.) The ratings on VNDB aren't the best, which is to be expected tbh. It's a hard game to read, and it's a denpa game where every single small detail matters. I'd imagine a chunk of VNDB votes comes from people who try reading JP games with machine translations, and well, that is not recommended for this game. In fact, there are many parts of the game that cannot be hooked, as they are either in image files in the game itself, or in voiced lines without any text. In addition, it's a game with some pretty dark content here and there, and I know some people just rate games badly because of that. (This is a story driven mystery/denpa game, and similar to SubaHibi, all the dark elements are there for a reason, driving the story forward.) I don't mean to come off as an elitist saying "EOP's opinions doesn't matter!" here, by the way. I do think the difficulty of the game, and the content in it might have caused a bit of a change in the votes from English readers, though. In comparison, the game is rated very highly on EGS, being #23 of the whole year so far, (and it also has a rather high amount of votes, in comparison to some games above it on the list, which just has a handful. Like, seriously, 2 of the games on the list only have 5-6 votes, kek.)
    Overall, this is just a fantastic read. I strongly recommend it to anyone who can read it. It truly just blew my mind. If you ARE going to read it, do yourself a favor: Do NOT look up anything about it. No CGs, no story summaries, no nothing. Just go in blind, and enjoy the ride. Seriously, you have no idea what's in store for you.
     
    Moving on from Chrono Box, we have Pure Song Garden, the first "normal" charage I played this year that I feel deserves a spot among the "better" releases I've read in 2017. This is Pulltop's newest "club-themed game", similar to Konosora and Miagete Goran, focusing on a future world where AI and VR has become an important part of our lives. It has fantastic romance, (in the true route at least; I have to admit, I skipped the other routes for the true route. It was all I wanted,) the story is surprisingly good, and the characters aren't just stereotypes, like they tend to be in similar games. Suzu and Iroha, the characters with the main focus in the true route, definitely makes the game worth it by themselves. The MC also isn't bad, though I do wish they added a bit more to his backstory. They introduced an interesting conflict with him, which just kind of resolved itself rather quickly, something that irked me a bit. But, definitely a solid game overall.
    You can read more of my opinions on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Finally we have Biman 4. This was my first Biman title, and I didn't really know what to expect of the game. And honestly, I was blown away by it. The writing was fantastic, and felt nearly poetic at times, even. The drama was well handled, and some of the scenes made me take a break from the game for a bit, as they made me feel so many different emotions. These scenes were so well done.
    At the end of the day, the game is still a nukige, and I won't call it a kamige or anything, but man, this game is so much more than first meets the eye. Almost makes me sad that it's a nukige, as there could have been even more potential there had it been a little longer, and a little more story focused.
    Either way, this is another truly good VN that I strongly recommend people read. Also, it's completely possible to read it without having read the other Biman games, just like I did.
    You can read some more details about my opinion on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Overall, this has been a great year with many solid releases. My backlog still has a good chunk of the games that came out this year, many of which might have made it on this list, if I had the time to read them. But, oh well. I'm still happy with the amount of VNs I got done this year, and look forward to seeing what 2018 has in store for us.
  23. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from MaggieROBOT for a blog entry, My Favorite VN Releases of 2017   
    2017 has been a pretty cool year in terms of VN releases. I'm not even close to Clephas' level of reading, so I have only scratched the surface of what was released this year, but I did still read what I think is a pretty decent chunk of VNs, and now that the year is coming to a close, I'd like to go through some those games and talk about which ones I liked the most etc. This blog post will only cover NEW releases in 2017. I might make a separate blog post about VNs that weren't released in 2017, but that I still read this year later on.
     
    I started the year with Ryuu Kishi Bloody Saga, a cool fantasty game by Akabeisoft 3. The prequel to this game was a dark nukige-ish story, which didn't really impress me. But, Ryuu Kishi went into a completely different direction, and ended up being a really entertaining read. I wrote a blog post about Ryuu Kishi around the time I finished it, so I'll link that here if anyone wants to read it.
    Summing up though, Ryuu Kishi is a good fantasty VN, with great action scenes, an interesting plot, and good romance. (With a functional harem aspect, which was interesting.) It's by no means a kamige, but it was definitely among the better games released this year in my opinion.
    After this I played a few games, but none of them were anything special. Amanatsu Adolescence had some aspects I liked, but fell flat on its face with the heroine routes, which was disappointing.
    The next game worth mentioning is Majo to Tsurugi to Sen no Tsuki. This was my first time playing one of Kai's Mahou Shoujo games, and the only reason I picked this one up was because Ban'ya had helped write it. (I love Ban'ya's stuff.)
    The game honestly blew me away. I'm not saying it's a kamige or anything, (not by a long shot,) but considering that this is meant to be a nukige, it really went beyond my expectations. The story was legitimately interesting, the characters were great and the writing was satisfying. Reading this game made me interested in checking out the rest of the works in the series, which I'll get around to reading at some point. Hopefully they are similar in structure, as I took quite the liking to the way this game's structure. You basically have a nukige with a story, where making the right choices lets you skip most of the H-scenes, and move through the true route. But, if you make the wrong choice, you are thrown down "bad routes", filled with bad endings and H-scenes. So, depending on what mood you're in, you can choose what type of game you're playing, essentially. (There are of course still a decent number of H-scenes in the true route, but the bulk of them are in the bad routes.)
    My review of this game can be found here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Now, next on the list is Chrono Box, and well, I'm just going to come out and say it right away: This game is amazing. It's without a doubt one of my favorite VNs of all time. Actually, it's tied for 1st place with the ChuSinGura series.
    I went into the game without knowing much about the story, and I got sucked into the game right away, finishing the whole thing in about 4-5 days. (Considering it's a rather hard game to read in Japanese, that's pretty crazy fast for me.) The ratings on VNDB aren't the best, which is to be expected tbh. It's a hard game to read, and it's a denpa game where every single small detail matters. I'd imagine a chunk of VNDB votes comes from people who try reading JP games with machine translations, and well, that is not recommended for this game. In fact, there are many parts of the game that cannot be hooked, as they are either in image files in the game itself, or in voiced lines without any text. In addition, it's a game with some pretty dark content here and there, and I know some people just rate games badly because of that. (This is a story driven mystery/denpa game, and similar to SubaHibi, all the dark elements are there for a reason, driving the story forward.) I don't mean to come off as an elitist saying "EOP's opinions doesn't matter!" here, by the way. I do think the difficulty of the game, and the content in it might have caused a bit of a change in the votes from English readers, though. In comparison, the game is rated very highly on EGS, being #23 of the whole year so far, (and it also has a rather high amount of votes, in comparison to some games above it on the list, which just has a handful. Like, seriously, 2 of the games on the list only have 5-6 votes, kek.)
    Overall, this is just a fantastic read. I strongly recommend it to anyone who can read it. It truly just blew my mind. If you ARE going to read it, do yourself a favor: Do NOT look up anything about it. No CGs, no story summaries, no nothing. Just go in blind, and enjoy the ride. Seriously, you have no idea what's in store for you.
     
    Moving on from Chrono Box, we have Pure Song Garden, the first "normal" charage I played this year that I feel deserves a spot among the "better" releases I've read in 2017. This is Pulltop's newest "club-themed game", similar to Konosora and Miagete Goran, focusing on a future world where AI and VR has become an important part of our lives. It has fantastic romance, (in the true route at least; I have to admit, I skipped the other routes for the true route. It was all I wanted,) the story is surprisingly good, and the characters aren't just stereotypes, like they tend to be in similar games. Suzu and Iroha, the characters with the main focus in the true route, definitely makes the game worth it by themselves. The MC also isn't bad, though I do wish they added a bit more to his backstory. They introduced an interesting conflict with him, which just kind of resolved itself rather quickly, something that irked me a bit. But, definitely a solid game overall.
    You can read more of my opinions on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Finally we have Biman 4. This was my first Biman title, and I didn't really know what to expect of the game. And honestly, I was blown away by it. The writing was fantastic, and felt nearly poetic at times, even. The drama was well handled, and some of the scenes made me take a break from the game for a bit, as they made me feel so many different emotions. These scenes were so well done.
    At the end of the day, the game is still a nukige, and I won't call it a kamige or anything, but man, this game is so much more than first meets the eye. Almost makes me sad that it's a nukige, as there could have been even more potential there had it been a little longer, and a little more story focused.
    Either way, this is another truly good VN that I strongly recommend people read. Also, it's completely possible to read it without having read the other Biman games, just like I did.
    You can read some more details about my opinion on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Overall, this has been a great year with many solid releases. My backlog still has a good chunk of the games that came out this year, many of which might have made it on this list, if I had the time to read them. But, oh well. I'm still happy with the amount of VNs I got done this year, and look forward to seeing what 2018 has in store for us.
  24. Like
    Dergonu got a reaction from Plk_Lesiak for a blog entry, My Favorite VN Releases of 2017   
    2017 has been a pretty cool year in terms of VN releases. I'm not even close to Clephas' level of reading, so I have only scratched the surface of what was released this year, but I did still read what I think is a pretty decent chunk of VNs, and now that the year is coming to a close, I'd like to go through some those games and talk about which ones I liked the most etc. This blog post will only cover NEW releases in 2017. I might make a separate blog post about VNs that weren't released in 2017, but that I still read this year later on.
     
    I started the year with Ryuu Kishi Bloody Saga, a cool fantasty game by Akabeisoft 3. The prequel to this game was a dark nukige-ish story, which didn't really impress me. But, Ryuu Kishi went into a completely different direction, and ended up being a really entertaining read. I wrote a blog post about Ryuu Kishi around the time I finished it, so I'll link that here if anyone wants to read it.
    Summing up though, Ryuu Kishi is a good fantasty VN, with great action scenes, an interesting plot, and good romance. (With a functional harem aspect, which was interesting.) It's by no means a kamige, but it was definitely among the better games released this year in my opinion.
    After this I played a few games, but none of them were anything special. Amanatsu Adolescence had some aspects I liked, but fell flat on its face with the heroine routes, which was disappointing.
    The next game worth mentioning is Majo to Tsurugi to Sen no Tsuki. This was my first time playing one of Kai's Mahou Shoujo games, and the only reason I picked this one up was because Ban'ya had helped write it. (I love Ban'ya's stuff.)
    The game honestly blew me away. I'm not saying it's a kamige or anything, (not by a long shot,) but considering that this is meant to be a nukige, it really went beyond my expectations. The story was legitimately interesting, the characters were great and the writing was satisfying. Reading this game made me interested in checking out the rest of the works in the series, which I'll get around to reading at some point. Hopefully they are similar in structure, as I took quite the liking to the way this game's structure. You basically have a nukige with a story, where making the right choices lets you skip most of the H-scenes, and move through the true route. But, if you make the wrong choice, you are thrown down "bad routes", filled with bad endings and H-scenes. So, depending on what mood you're in, you can choose what type of game you're playing, essentially. (There are of course still a decent number of H-scenes in the true route, but the bulk of them are in the bad routes.)
    My review of this game can be found here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Now, next on the list is Chrono Box, and well, I'm just going to come out and say it right away: This game is amazing. It's without a doubt one of my favorite VNs of all time. Actually, it's tied for 1st place with the ChuSinGura series.
    I went into the game without knowing much about the story, and I got sucked into the game right away, finishing the whole thing in about 4-5 days. (Considering it's a rather hard game to read in Japanese, that's pretty crazy fast for me.) The ratings on VNDB aren't the best, which is to be expected tbh. It's a hard game to read, and it's a denpa game where every single small detail matters. I'd imagine a chunk of VNDB votes comes from people who try reading JP games with machine translations, and well, that is not recommended for this game. In fact, there are many parts of the game that cannot be hooked, as they are either in image files in the game itself, or in voiced lines without any text. In addition, it's a game with some pretty dark content here and there, and I know some people just rate games badly because of that. (This is a story driven mystery/denpa game, and similar to SubaHibi, all the dark elements are there for a reason, driving the story forward.) I don't mean to come off as an elitist saying "EOP's opinions doesn't matter!" here, by the way. I do think the difficulty of the game, and the content in it might have caused a bit of a change in the votes from English readers, though. In comparison, the game is rated very highly on EGS, being #23 of the whole year so far, (and it also has a rather high amount of votes, in comparison to some games above it on the list, which just has a handful. Like, seriously, 2 of the games on the list only have 5-6 votes, kek.)
    Overall, this is just a fantastic read. I strongly recommend it to anyone who can read it. It truly just blew my mind. If you ARE going to read it, do yourself a favor: Do NOT look up anything about it. No CGs, no story summaries, no nothing. Just go in blind, and enjoy the ride. Seriously, you have no idea what's in store for you.
     
    Moving on from Chrono Box, we have Pure Song Garden, the first "normal" charage I played this year that I feel deserves a spot among the "better" releases I've read in 2017. This is Pulltop's newest "club-themed game", similar to Konosora and Miagete Goran, focusing on a future world where AI and VR has become an important part of our lives. It has fantastic romance, (in the true route at least; I have to admit, I skipped the other routes for the true route. It was all I wanted,) the story is surprisingly good, and the characters aren't just stereotypes, like they tend to be in similar games. Suzu and Iroha, the characters with the main focus in the true route, definitely makes the game worth it by themselves. The MC also isn't bad, though I do wish they added a bit more to his backstory. They introduced an interesting conflict with him, which just kind of resolved itself rather quickly, something that irked me a bit. But, definitely a solid game overall.
    You can read more of my opinions on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Finally we have Biman 4. This was my first Biman title, and I didn't really know what to expect of the game. And honestly, I was blown away by it. The writing was fantastic, and felt nearly poetic at times, even. The drama was well handled, and some of the scenes made me take a break from the game for a bit, as they made me feel so many different emotions. These scenes were so well done.
    At the end of the day, the game is still a nukige, and I won't call it a kamige or anything, but man, this game is so much more than first meets the eye. Almost makes me sad that it's a nukige, as there could have been even more potential there had it been a little longer, and a little more story focused.
    Either way, this is another truly good VN that I strongly recommend people read. Also, it's completely possible to read it without having read the other Biman games, just like I did.
    You can read some more details about my opinion on the game here, on Clephas' blog.
     
    Overall, this has been a great year with many solid releases. My backlog still has a good chunk of the games that came out this year, many of which might have made it on this list, if I had the time to read them. But, oh well. I'm still happy with the amount of VNs I got done this year, and look forward to seeing what 2018 has in store for us.
  25. Like
    Dergonu reacted to Narcosis for a blog entry, Nemurenu Hitsuji to Kodoku na Ookami - first impressions   
    Warning: this post contains screenshots and (very) minor spoilers from the trial version. If you completely don't want to spoil yourself, or haven't played the trial yet, I'd highly advise to postpone reading until you finish the game first.
    If you did not yet stumble upon one of those TIME TO LEARN JAPANESE reminders, you have a damn good reason to finally consider studying moon runes.

    Title: 眠れぬ羊と孤独な狼-A Tale of Love, and Cutthroat- (trial ver.)
    (eng. Sleepless Sheep and Lonesome Wolf - A Tale of Love, and Cutthroat / Yourou for short)
    Developer: ClockUp
    Genre: Psychological thriller
    Rating: AO/18+ as f*ck
    VNDB
    Official website
     
    I always had a mixed opinion about ClockUp and their games. It's one of those studios, you will either love or hate with a profound passion and one that's going to be blocked by many game news outlets, websites and forums. Gods forbid you from even talking about their games, unless you're a member of some obscure corner of the internet (like this one) or a member of the perverted sect, known as filthy eroge players. Why? Because their blockbuster games are not only addictive, but often delve into topics, that are - to be blunt - plain repulsive and/or very uncomfortable for most average people to tackle. When they aren't working on their next serious game, they typically tend to churn out low budget porn games, that borderline on rape and mind corruption, with occasional gems in-between (yes, I am looking at you, Zwei Vorter). Joyful, right?
    Yourou is their latest addition to that wonderful lineup, best described as a "thrilling crime tale". In comparison to their previous games, Tatsuya dropped fantasy based concepts in favor of a more down-to-earth setting. Yourou seems to focus more broadly on the environment itself, rather than portraying the lives of single characters or a particular group. In that manner, main characters play more of a central role, rather than just being forced into hero/heroine roles. This makes the whole game feel more akin to an actual digital story, rather than a classic visual novel, where everything is told mostly from protagonist's perspective. In all honesty, this was a perfect choice, as the world presented within becomes much more colourful, playing an important role itself, instead of being just a backdrop for the characters to play on.

    Heavy filtered, neon-like photographic backgrounds with an added touch of grunge stylistics remind of the reality within - coarse, twisted and brutal, yet insanely vivid. It's a world of prostitutes, carnal pleasures, yakuza and bustling nightlife.
    Yourou tells a tale of Takeo - a young man, living in your typical, run-of-the-mill love hotel in Kabukicho district, commonly known as the biggest entertainment zone of Tokyo, Japan. Takeo suffers from chronic insomnia, which turned his whole life upside down. His life is filled with nearly endless days that span across the weeks, while he earns his living as a janitor, cleaning up after guests. We quickly learn of his problems. His daily job is nothing but a cover for his true rason d'etre. In order to survive his disability, Takeo takes upon the offer of one of the leading gang's Bosses and works as an assassin during the nights; killing is the only way he can actually experience sleep.

    For both Takeo and Azami - back then still complete strangers, this was ought to be a night like any other. Little did they knew, the following events will make their paths cross again.
    This changes, after he meets Azami - a mysterious girl, he spots one day upon leaving to work, as usual. A pretty, young call girl, en-route to her client. Takeo didn't put much thought into it, until the next day his group discovers a dead body in the same exact room, she was supposedly to meet up; A pretty gruesome discovery too boot. upon finding out the man was actually an important member of the neighbourhooding group, Takeo's boss - Mamoru - orders him to find the culprit at all costs and bring her alive to prevent a potential gang war. At this point, Takeo couldn't care less about that, since he already had a reason of his own. Until now, Takeo considered himself a killer sheep - because he only killed upon a direct order. The sole fact of another killer like him, capable to bring down and gut a man of this size, regardless of consequences - an indicator of free will - makes Takeo boil with anger. For him, the mysterious girl becomes an actual wolf, which directly puts his life on the line. Unable to rest in peace, he vouches to find the girl himself at all costs and bloody murder her, so he can finally get a good night's sleep.

    Whoopsie~
    Takeo's personal investigation takes him across the streets of Kabukicho. Soon, he discovers the girl he chased after sports nearly inhuman strength and reflexes far beyond his own capabilities; he's forced to run for his own life. As it turns out, this was just the beginning of a wild road, that will inevitably bring an end to his current, peaceful existence.
    The trial version covers exactly, what could be considered a prologue to the whole story. It's incredibly well paced, drawing you into a vividly painted image of Kabukicho's underworld - back alleys, host clubs, brothels and many of it's criminal groups, fighting for supremacy in this world filled to the brim with human dreams and desires. I was honestly surprised with the amount of detail, that went into every single aspect of the game. Tatsuya is well known for his prose, that often shifts more into psychological side of things and Yourou uses it surprisingly well to create a colourful cast of characters teeming with life. It's one of those rare stories, that make you feel emotionally invested with heroes of the story and you'll often find yourself cheering for them, even though you know they aren't necessarily good people. In fact, the world of Yourou is painted with grey and greyer shades, while it's characters aren't some superfluous paper dolls, but plain people with their own dreams and goals. This is especially prevalent for both Takeo and Azami, as they aren't guided by some invisible hand, but act entirely based on their own assumptions, choices and more than often - emotions - which in turn makes for some really interesting situations. Things don't "just happen"; if they happen, they do happen for a reason.

    Each criminal group within the story is given a proper introduction, without sparing any details. This kind of intricate world-building greatly enriches the game and makes you emotionally invested with characters, no matter who they are.
    Nemurenu Hitsuji to Kodoku na Ookami convinces me there are still studios capable of creating original, adult-oriented, purely story driven experiences, instead of this uninspired trash relying on commonly found otaku tropes. I have high expectations of this game and - of course - can't wait for the release. No matter if you're a fan of ClockUp, or someone who's looking for a more mature story - one without highly-pitched animu gals, fawning over protag's virtually infinite manhood - Yourou might be what you're looking for.
    As of now, Yourou is scheduled for release on 22th of December. I couldn't ask for a better Christmas present.
     
     
    PS. Azami is a fantastic heroine. Read the game and you'll understand why
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