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DarkZedge

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  1. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Zakamutt for a blog entry, On Moderation and the Validity of Unenforced Standards   
    The problem
    While spurred by recent events, this essay touches on something that seems to have been a pattern in site moderation for some time now.
    Let me make a claim: if a rule, especially one that is vaguely worded, is not enforced, for a decent amount of people that rule does not exist. This nonexistence integrates into the mental model of the rules that forum members construct, no matter what the formal rules may say. For members using this mental model, beginning to enforce a rule that was previously unenforced is equivalent to creating a new rule. As such, the same procedures as those used to notify forum members of new rules should be applied, possibly with some adaptation on the lines of "we will now actually enforce this rule", as the rule effectively did not previously exist.
    The ur-example of this is the loligeddon of yore. The takeaway from the loligeddon when it comes to this essay is this: mods repeatedly stated that no rules had actually been changed. Yet nevertheless the appearance and subsequent removal of a particularly problematic post sparked sweeping policy changes, a cleanup operation, a tl;dr post by the administrator explaining the changes, et cetera. This should make it clear that changing policy is a big deal, even if no written rules actually change.
    Recent policy changes, however, have been very different from what happened during the loligeddon. Frequently the only indication that effective rules have changed has been moderator action, sometimes fairly strict. In essentially all cases this action has been explained either inadequately or, most commonly, not at all. When this occurs the target(s) of moderation will likely feel that they have been unfairly, erratically targeted by a capricious, uncommunicative bully. What do you do when you get bullied? Well, you could talk to HR, but the mod that bullied you is probably in HR anyway and you might not even know who did it. Another option is to fight back. You annoy me, I pay you back in kind - and if I can get some fun at your expense, sure, why not? You're a bully, you deserve it.[1]
    I do not mean to suggest that we need to have a tl;dr writeup every time a rule is changed, but a simple statement of intent would be appreciated. I estimate that writing this should take no more than 20 minutes. As an example, here's a hypothetical notice regarding the changing of rules on gifs that took me ~10 minutes to write. Note that the policy mentioned here could be reversed or altered to be more specific if it turns out that it was unclear or did more harm than good, which is arguably more difficult to do if the rule has been made official.[2]
    In the light of this, I would like to present some recommendations.
    Recommendations
    When moderating, consider if your action is effectively creating or modifying rules
    Remember: in the minds of some of your users, unenforced rules may as well not exist. If you decide to moderate something that was previously typically not being moderated, this will cause confusion and consternation.
    As such, whenever you make a decision, ask yourself: am I changing the rules? If so, you need to consider both whether your action is actually justified, and how you are going to inform the public of your policy change. You are not a cop, you are a judge in a precedent-setting court. This is especially true due to the (understandable) current policy of supporting other mods' decisions near unconditionally.
    Do not make controversial decisions when following up is difficult
    On some occasions moderators have moderated while on vacation, using their phone, with bad connections et cetera. I strongly recommend against making anything close to a controversial decision in these conditions. You will end up both ruining your vacation and doing a bad job.
    Talk first, shoot later
    If you are performing a moderator action which reasonably should include notifying the target of the action, write up the informative PM or otherwise establish communication before enforcement. You could also consider writing up the notification of intent to change / differently enforce / clarify rules before moderating. Most of the time nobody is harmed much by leaving something up until you can handle it properly. For things that require more urgent management such as a fast-evolving derailment, consider either using a PM template for 1-2 people or making a post stating that you have removed derailing posts in the thread you moderated.
    Make people feel heard
    One key theme of this essay is the importance of communication. This extends beyond just notifying people of changes to the rules. I am under no illusions that your actions will go uncontested or that people won't meme and fling shit at you even if you try your best to communicate as advised in this essay. In part this is due to the frustration some people, and certainly I myself, consider you responsible for creating due to your actions up to this point. However, when hostility meets well-practiced civility its fires often run out of fuel. If you constructively engage with those who would oppose you, you can both soothe their frustration and create better, more precise final rules.
    Obviously there has to be a limit and ultimately you set the rules to follow. But explaining, refining, and justifying your position elevates it from that of a dim-witted bully with little justification for their actions to someone who has a well-grounded but different opinion of what the rules should be. The first one deserves punishment, the second, grudging respect.
    As a personal observation: in general, you should assume that much less of your decisions are obviously justified than you currently think. One man's common sense is another man's borderline acceptability is another man's utterly idiotic rule enforcement.
    Moderation is a hard job
    If this all seems like a lot of hard work to you, congratulations! That's what I thought too when the mod applications came along, so I didn't apply. Any moderators that cannot actually moderate disputes should either confine themselves to routine, uncontroversial moderation tasks or step down from their position. Believe me, nobody will die either way, and you'll get to spend your free time doing something that suits you better.

    Notes
    [1]
    I personally don't consider the mods bullies when I do this kind of thing, but I do consider them deserving of public ridicule. The intention is both to correct behaviour and to extract some entertainment out of people that deserve to be made fun of.
    And yeah, I have no respect for authority. None. I will judge you by your actions alone.
    [2]
    This is an assumption based on my conception of normie considerations like pride, sticking with your decision, whatever.
    Obviously if a rule does more harm than good it should be removed whether or not it was enforced temporarily, but it is probably easier to do so politically if it was in fact considered temporary.
    Look, I'm trying desperately not to kill all normies every day here. Give me a break.
  2. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Narcosis for a blog entry, Reading line-up for late spring/summer 2018   
    Considering I've been seriously slacking off, I decided to talk a bit about my list of both japanese and western vns that remain on high priority for this season. Aside from a couple shorter, english-translated titles (Karakara 2, amongst others), Engima: I have yet to check and a bunch of doujin/amateur evns, this list consists of major games I'm mostly looking forward to this season.
    So, without further ado, in order of priority from highest to the lowest:
    Japanese titles:
    Yougen Tennyo - A demon prince embarks on a voyage through mortal planes to bring his bride from the heavenly realm. Incredibly artsy and very much underappreciated. Otomimi Infinity - Near future, beast people and all the relatable sociopolitical dilemma. Definitely one of the best mimikko games out on the market. Komorebi no Nostalgica - Distant future and androids. This is a cult classic game, residing within the top 10 sci-fi vns of all time. Akatsuki no Goei (whole trilogy + fandisk, wew) - A pragmatic bodyguard and a spoiled ojousama? What could possibly go wrong? English titles:
    Lucy - Androids and future, one more time. Highly emotional, western take on a sci-fi story akin to Planetarian. Quite successful. Considering my time is rather limited and I don't want to get stuck in an endless limbo of self-loathing, this is a somewhat reasonable schedule for the next two, three months of my life. I can't hide the fact I'm actually looking forward to Otomimi Infinity the most, considering the game's mostly about themes I currently find entertaining. There are a couple other titles on my backlog which are near the border, but not as near as to actually justify placing them within the list... or at least not until I finish those first. Not saying it might not suddenly change out of the blue, especially since I'm not sure whether Nostalgica is something I'll be able to cope with in terms of my japanese proficiency (I still want to try, regardless).
    Be sure to drop me a comment, if you want to hear more or feel like this list is completely wrong and I should be playing other titles at the moment
    Also, MFW still no Dies Irae.

  3. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Yuuko for a blog entry, End of an era   
    I have indeed come a long way. I can barely remember my childhood, besides, I don't think it was a happy childhood. But I do remember very clearly, when I met my buddy, @HMN
     
    Best Buddy: HMN
    I didn't like hanging out with people, but it was fun hanging out with him and the Trolling club. And it was damn funny seeing how oblivious that guy was to all those girl's feelings. We just kept living our fun days like that, until the day HMN brought a new honorary member to the club. Little did I know that new member was going to become my wife.
     
    Wife: Nikaidou Shinku

     
    The first time I put my eyes on her, I thought "Wow, she's so pretty...". She noticed my stare, then she got scared and hid behind HMN. I regretted staring at her so obviously... I thought she was just your normal innocent little girl, but she was special. Her awkward tsuntsun behavior would normally make people not talk to her, but for me, it just added to her cuteness.
    I noticed the best way to get closer to her was to play along, so I started acting dumb around her and asking her to help me with things. I remember the first time I asked for her help: "Mou... Shouganai naa... maybe I finally found someone who can appreciate my wisdom."
    She wasn't scared at all this time around, and answered me: "W-Well if you really insist, I'm in a good mood today, so I'll accept your hopeless challenge, it's obvious that you can't learn this normally but with my skills it might be possible"

    Making a big smile, I answer positively. Of course, I didn't actually need help at all. We studied, and I let her teach me. Then, she kinda noticed it and said "You really understand this don't you? I don't need your pity, but if you insist, we can still continue." Then, the second round starts, and I defeated her pretty easily. "I-I let you win there! This final round will be our real duel". Do you think I'd let you win? No way, I want you to lick my feetwhen you lose." That was the plan. But... she managed to defeat me! She was really holding back! Then we had sex for some reason
    I decided I'd defeat her someday, no matter what! And we battle'd every single day afterwards...
    But, two months later, HMN told the club members Shinku was sick at the hospital. I was the most surprised of them, and stood up the moment I heard it. When had I fallen for her, I wonder... maybe it was the moment I saw her, on our first battle, or afterwards.. I wasn't sure, but I knew something for certain: I wanted to be always by her side.
    The next day, I went to visit her. I knocked on the door, and was allowed entrance. When she saw that it was me, she blushed, and rapidly turned her head the other way. Then, she looked at me again: "Ohh? What a surprise. What brings you here? Are you going to take advantage of my low energy levels to finally defeat me?" I replied: "Now that would be no fun at all, would it? No, I came to you with a proposal."
    "O-Oh, very well, let's hear the fool's proposal"

    And then, breathing really deep, "Shinku, this is the first and time I'll be saying this to you, please don't be scared. I want to let you know, those days when I battle'd with you, were the most fun for me, they were what I thought about before going to sleep, and what I looked forward to the most when waking up at the next day. In other words, I'm thinking about you all the time, Shinku, and I can't stop it, I love you, and want to always be by your side." She stared at me, very surprised, and then, tears running down her face, and a lovely blushing smile, she replied: "Uhn, I feel the same way. People avoid me because of the way I act, but you were different, you accepted me for who I am, and even played along with me. Those were the most fun moments for me as well, always looking forward to battling with you, each day, being by your side brings me the most happiness, I love you. From now on, please take care of me."
    It has been many years since all of this happened, Shinku also took my name after we got married, and now she's Aozora Shinku. (Doesn't fit her at all owo) And we had two daughters.
     
    Younger Daughter: Aozora Nanami
     
    She's a very talented and mature one for her age. At the age of seven she can already hack many PCs quite well, and you gotta see her cooking skills! She's amazing! To tell you the truth, in our family, you may mistake the older sister for the younger sister, since Nanami is the one taking care of her older sister, not the opposite as it would normally be.
     
    Older Daughter: Aozora Sora

    She's not as talented as Nanami, in fact she's quite the hopeless one, but that's what makes her so cute, and our family mascot. We all like to tease her and see her pouting :3. But we all love her very much. She's very close with Nanami, actually, you always see those two together. When Sora trips down on the sidewalk, the one to kiss her wound and apply a bandage is Nanami. When Christmas comes, I dress as Santa and Nanami dresses as a elf, and we make Sora very happy with that. One fact about her though, no one can beat her in her neko spotting skills, that's her specialty.
     
    And, at last, this is how the HMN Crew came to be.
    You may be wondering how this is related to the HMN Crew at all but well it is. All these girls in this post are based on real persons that we hired along the long way from 2014 to this moment. You might not know them but that is because they are only active on secret Skype group. Nanami and Sora being the masterminds behind the most spiciest shitposts on the forum.
    But however, like everything, the HMN Crew has finally come to its end. This marks start of a new era. Maybe cleaner, maybe more shittier than eve,r who knows.
    The HMN Crew however, is officially dead with the leave of it's core members: HMN, "Nanami", and "Sora".

  4. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Clephas for a blog entry, Burned out   
    It's been a while since a single VN burned me out completely, but Silverio Trinity managed it.  That VN had many of the best elements of its predecessor, while being more balanced, having added unique soundtracks, and overall creating a mostly new experience that, while it didn't completely transcend the original, still managed to stand on the same plane.
    Unfortunately, it was a highly emotional experience, with a lot of excitement along the way... so I know I won't rate any VNs I play at this moment fairly, regardless of genre.  As a result, I'm taking a week's break from my VN of the Month to recover my sanity, lol.
  5. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Aizen-Sama for a blog entry, Dear Translation Requesters   
    Disclaimer: At the end of this post I get pretty salty, so be aware of that. This post endorses MY and MY OPINION ONLY. The numbers about the costs of a translation team were researched before putting them here.
    Hello guys. Aizen-Sama here with another spicy rant. Although I haven’t been around the forums as long as other users who have spent their time here several years (I have spent around 7 months more or less at the present time being) I have seen that there’s a huge problem that I’ve mostly seen here, in Fuwanovel, more than any other site that congregates VN fans. In fact, I think that this doesn’t happen anywhere but here, but again, what do I know? I don’t really visit Reddit nor 4chan that much, let alone interact there.

    Anyways, what I want to address is a problem that has been going on since the beginning stages of this site, and that problem is the Translation Requests, or what I like to call “e-beggars” (yes, I know this term has been invented already).

    First and foremost, the majority of people that make these Translation Request posts are usually new users and I’m fully aware of that. But this has been blowing up lately. I know that 4 posts in the last month and a half doesn’t sound like that much, but the proposals are getting so ridiculous that it’s hard to believe sometimes if the guys asking these things are for real or if they’re straight out trolling.

    Let’s take this post as a quick example. You’re scrolling through the forums and see this post, and then the thought comes to mind “Another typical Request Post. Sigh. Let’s see what this guy’s asking for…” and then you see this:

    These posts show nothing more than ignorance and arrogance, as well as no interest towards these groups they are begging to translate something for them. Do these people even understand what it takes to translate a medium length VN? A medium length, around the 35-40k line mark in my opinion, could easily take a year. And the guy in this post begged for 5 medium and long length VN’s to be translated, one of them being >50 hours long.

    But don’t be mistaken, the worst part about that post wasn’t the amount of VN’s he was begging for nor their length. It was the last statement: “Thanks in advance”. Although it sounds stupid, that’s what triggered me the most. A shitty “thanks in advance” is not something that motivates people to do these things. People have to put themselves in a translators’ shoes sometimes. Not only him, but also the people who aren’t translating, but the ones who edit the text, proofread it, the image editors, the quality checkers, etc… Do they think that the task can be easily done if the guy in question knows Japanese? Not even close.

    The secret of a translation project.

    I know this is hard to believe for the e-beggars, but the translation of a game requires an enormous amount of time, and one year to finish the TRANSLATION, not editing, of a medium length VN is a very decent deadline. And I’m talking about a medium length game, not a long one. Majo Koi has around 47k lines. Supposing it had one sole translator and the translator in question did 100 lines a day, the game would be finished in around 470 days approximately, this taking into account he diligently does 100 lines a day, no skipping, no nothing. Let’s convert that into hours spent in total, since that tends to shock people more; 470 days doing 100 lines a day, if the translator is an experienced one, meaning that he has done this before or is a professional in the field, he could get rid of that task in about an hour. But an amateur translator, basically the bulk of the community in itself when it comes to fan translations, could take around 1,5 or 2 hours to do the exact same number of lines. That could mean than in total, just translating could take from 470 hours for the experienced translator, which means around 20 full days translating something, to 705-940 hours for the amateur translator, which is around 30-40 days translating nonstop. And this would be just translation, I’m purposely taking out the other processes such as editing and QC’ing. Do you e-beggars understand the amount of work is being put in these projects? This is why Translation Request posts should be completely banned off this site and instantly deleted. Then again, where would I put my insulting memes towards the op’s to gain likes for no reason?

    Let’s throw in another question now that we’re shifting towards that matter: Is fan-translating Visual Novels even worth it in the first place?

    Before I answer (although it’s probably known what I’m going to say, given my tone) let me address this: I by no means think that fan-translation is bad, in fact, it has been the reason why we’re getting official localizations now and I think that no amount of praise of thanks can equate the amount of work the translators of these projects did in order for this genre to be known better in the Western community.

    But, as sad as it sounds, fan translating at this moment is not worth it. Why? I’ll put in some of the reasons:

    -          Although some members of the vocal community throw in the occasional thanks once the patch is out that’s all the team who translated the game gets. Nothing more, nothing less. Some people might say that recognition counts as some sort of reward as well, but personally I don’t think that’s the case.
    -          No reviews of the translated VN’s are usually made (this is what in my opinion spreads the awareness of these games), only discussion threads are made, which is pretty sad in my opinion.
    -          I’m going to quote something that Clephas said in one of my posts, that sums up this next point:  “Another thing is that most people in the community will never even try to experience fantl from the other side of things... they don't realize how much time it eats up, that emptiness you feel when you realize you've used dozens of hours of your personal time only to put out a patch that people bash left and right for 'errors' and other shit.”
    -          The work put in to translate the game itself is not worth, meaning that the compensation that the translator/team worked for it is not even close enough to what they should be getting.
    Lastly, I want to address the problem that comes with donations, awareness of localization costs/translation costs, and ignorance.

    I’ll cut to the chase; for the people that think that with donations alone you can “pay” a translator to do some kind of game, you’re WRONG. Let’s put an example of what could a medium VN translation cost: let’s suppose that the team consists of three persons, to translate a 1.5 million jp character VN (equating to a 45k line count approximately). The translator gets 1 cent per Japanese character, the editor gets 1 cent per English word and the QC gets a quarter of a cent for each English word. In total, the final price equates to 33k dollars JUST FOR THE TEAM TO TRANSLATE A SINGLE VN. And these prices are apparently pretty shitty for a translator, so yeah, there you go. Besides, why donating a random group of guys, who could easily run away with the money and machine translate the game, or not even translate the game at all, when you can just support the official localizers? Contrary to what some people think they are actually releasing more games than ever and the 18+ industry in the scene has never seen so many official releases ever.

    Summing up this 3 page-long essay of frustration:

    1.       Please for the love of god don’t e-beg or Request for translations. Just no, it triggers people off and it only shows how ignorant you are about what happens behind the scenes.
    2.       Fan Translating in this actual moment is NOT WORTH, only people who are very commited and have a strong resolution will be able to start one, and very few out of those will actually finish the project.
    3.       Donations are NOT a solution to encourage Fan Translation, it ruins the very concept of it and it’s also ILLEGAL. Don’t support an already illegal activity by paying it.
    4.       Before posting retarded shit on the forums please look for other posts similar to what you might want to post. Maybe looking at the responses could enlighten you and help the other users not waste their time by reading the same shit over and over again.
    5.       Before criticizing Translations and patches for “errors” and “typos” and being a little whining bitch how about you try to show interest on how much effort people put on the translation of these games behind the scenes? (This goes solely to the people that haven't experienced working on a fan translation and whine non-stop about "how bad the translation of this is" and blah blah blah.)
    Anyways, I think that’s all the rage out. For those of you who haven’t dozed off already have a nice day and all of that stuff.

    And if you smash that like button you will get your very own… DIES IRAE MACHINE TRANSLATED PATCH. Yes! This is not a scam at all, your own personal Dies Irae Machine Translated patch. If you leave a like you can choose between a Google, Bing, or a Skype translated patch. I’ve invested so many hours on them, it was totally worth though ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°).

  6. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Flutterz for a blog entry, Reading Ginharu Very Slowly #4   
    Been busy this week, didn't get to read as much, took a bunch of screenshots though!
    Bethly came to school the next day, all healthy and less depressed.
    The one-room classroom had its first meeting, and it basically consisted of Yukito, the 5 grills and Momo-chan-sensei as the teacher. Since the topic was "My favourite thing" and Yukito was first, he gave a speech about how the local mountaintop was his favourite thing, and everyone liked it so much they decided they wanted to go there.
    Bethly also talked about her favourite thing, which is Alberta, and her mom. After the one-room classroom, everyone went home together, and discussed the two speeches.
    It was decided that they'd go up to the mountain top on the weekend. Naturally Yukito and Yuzuki arrived at the rendezvous point first, and they soon saw what looked like Hina being accosted by two large gentlemen, and figured they must be womanizers, so Yukito had to go save her.
    Turns out they were just tourists trying to get directions.
    Eventually everyone but Bethly arrives, and since she's nowhere to be seen we end up taking the cable car without her.
    A short while after we reach the top, we hear a familiar sneeze somewhere nearby.
    Once the group is all back together, everyone decides to have a snowball fight, as middle-schoolers do.
    Well, that's all for now, and now it's time for more reading!
  7. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Arcadeotic for a blog entry, Bishoujo Mangekyou TL Update 38: Editing's Final Stretch   
    ‘Nother update.
    The final week before the big reveal, pretty exciting. Anyways, as I said last week, all the different kinds progress would continue stronger the next week, and so it did. Editing’s now at 85%, meaning only 15 percent remains, and it might be very likely that we’ll reach 100% on editing and perhaps also on QC, but that might not happen, so don’t count my word on it, in either case. After those, only proofreading the whole thing remains and then injecting the translation in the scripts, which might take a while, but if all goes accordingly, the full patch should land for all of you to download before the year ends.
    Now, onto the secret project. Translating’s going good, though school and exams are somewhat slowing the progress down, but TLC has begun on it, and is going on a steady, but a fast pace. Editing on it will start only when the TLC is finished completely, so keep that in mind.

  8. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Aizen-Sama for a blog entry, A rant about the translation scene and the community revolving it.   
    Hello everyone, Aizen-Sama here. I’ve been only around this community and forums for around 6 months by now, and even though I may not be the most knowledgeable when it comes to VN’s in general, I think that I possess enough knowledge about the translation scene. That’s right, today I’m not writing a post about Luna Translations, but one about my opinion on the translation scene, translation groups, and the community revolving them.

    Let us establish how this community and market actually exist in the first place. Piracy and fan translating, they are both mutually exclusive to each other and they are the foundations of what we consider as the “western visual novel community”.
    After some years where piracy slowly started to decrease and official releases started to be a thing I can safely assume that there are three types of people now, one who will support every single game localization and buy the Visual Novels instead of pirating them, one who will pirate everything and anything, or one that will mix between these two because either there is no other access to the game in Japanese to apply the English patch (in other words, you can’t buy the game legally because the Japanese market is already a very difficult place to access with Western VPN’s, mostly because Japanese publishers block them to not let people outside Japan buy these games online, which is usually the only way to get them in the first place) or the individual simply doesn’t support some releases or companies that release VN’s in particular (I’ll set people that want to buy legally a game with a fan-translated patch but can’t do it, so they have to pirate the VN even if they don’t want to as an example).
    This last example leads to another concerning issue, the relationship between translation groups and the community itself. It’s partly human nature; when a group establishes itself and releases a patch (no matter whether it’s full or partial) we automatically create what is called a “power level” between these two types of people, the users that translate and work on translating games in one way or another (editing, QC’ing, etc…) and the users that simply play the releases made by the first ones.
    This so called “power level” is what should be avoided at all costs, sometimes the community must remember that the people that belong to translation groups (whether they are official or not) are part of the community as well, and have their own stances and way of doing things.
    Those “power levels” are automatically made, and they are the primary reason of this community’s fragmentation into several “sub-communities”, which is a problem mainly for the translation groups. What I’m trying to say here is that what is constantly happening right now is that what this “power division” has made is to categorize groups by number of patches released (the more they have released the more praised they are) and that has ultimately lead to two things; groups distancing themselves from the community, which is a very bad thing for both of the parties involved, and groups distancing from each other.
    What I mean by this last statement is that there is no communication between teams, which leads to what is happening in the actual society that we live in: the individualization of people (Tl-teams in this case). But regarding that aspect, some groups have managed to find a solution to this matter. Let’s put @Arcadeotic's (Euphemic Translation) and @oystein's (Elevator TL) groups for example; both of them have found a way to make the community feel closer to their groups thanks to their “Public Discord Server Policy” (that’s how I call it) and both of them are in the TL Leaders Discord Server (basically a group to try to unite translation teams more, an initiative from Arcadeotic and I). That group has opened my eyes in many aspects regarding team stances towards piracy as well as opinions about the community and it's relation with the Tl teams. This group has also helped me in getting to know people that otherwise I would have never met even if we were active members of this forum and interacted with each other sometimes, like for example Dergonu, Oystein, Kardororororo, and many more.
    What I’m ultimately trying to say is that banding together is a rare thing for groups now, and this is the first step to create a community feel again, something that, in my opinion, is being lost little by little and needs to be stopped.
    I’ll mention another issue that many people find itchy, and that is the topic of “the sense of entitlement of a loud minority”.
    I’d like to make myself very clear about this; I know that there is a silent positive majority, and that compared to the amount of people that complain about things about projects and English patches this majority vastly overcomes the “minority”, but the matter of fact is that this “loud minority” is what gives people that are new to the community a bad impression about it from the start.
    I’ll set two examples to demonstrate the last point I mentioned: firstly, I’d like to address the Koiken Otome Project, one that took approximately three years to finish. It’s a topic full of controversy, firstly because people firstly speculated that Flying Pantsu was going to “definitely sell out to the localization companies” and they made a ruckus about it.

    First of all, what if they really “sold out” to one of them? That is, in my opinion, a good thing (primarily because I belong to the “buy everything” type of guy instead of pirating unless it can’t be avoided and tend to support official releases), but mostly because, the fact of the matter is that they spent working on an English patch of a game that contains more than 40K lines three years, and the entire effort is theirs, that means that even if they decided to not release the patch for whatever reason, I would have been totally in favor. Why? Because it’s THEIR work and THEY did it, not the people that feel entitled to have the English patch.
    Same goes with the problem that revolved around the time of release. Again, I’ll repeat, the matter of fact is that they could’ve released that patch whenever they wanted because since THEY did the patch, they decide when to release it, simple.

    The second example I’ll highlight in this post talks about Shinku Translations and the controversy that revolved around the SakuSaku patch. If you don’t know what happened regarding this project I’ll quickly sum it up: Shinku Translations made a deal with Sekai Project to release the game officially, what ultimately made people who were waiting for a fan-patch very pissed. The comments on their website were mostly full of “sellouts” and “I already bought the game in Japanese, now I’ll have to buy it again, gg boys” and many more that blew my mind. That was the perfect demonstration of the entitlement that people slowly begin to have when a project is close to being finished.
     I’ll repeat myself once again, just like Koiken Otome and Flying Pantsu, it was THEIR work, so they had the right to make a deal with Sekai Project and do whatever they wanted to the patch. And, as Akerou explained in one of the comments, it could lead to more titles being localized, which, in my opinion, are good news!
     People have to start realizing that sooner or later, the entire scope if not most of the translation scope will shift towards official releases instead of fan-patches.
    As a last argument regarding this matter, I’ll mention a couple of YouTube comments that I found in the official OP video of SakuSaku published by Sekai Project’s YouTube channel, they basically said this:
    “That's a low punch SP. That's just low. The guy translating it is almost done. If you buy the translation from him and release it in the next 2 months I might forgive you. If you do it less than a month you are forgiven.”
    “Well just pirate the release when it comes out. This is one of the cases when piracy is completely justified.”
    These two comments are part of the “entitlement problem” that I’ve addressed before, and I hope they highlight what I’ve been trying to tackle (take into account that these comments are just the surface, just look at the ones in Shinku’s page and you’ll get a grasp of what this community broods sometimes).

    Last but not least, I’d like to address Fuwanovel as a platform for translation projects and my opinion about it as a Leader of a translation group (in this case, Luna Translations).
    Don’t get me wrong when I say that. I love Fuwanovel as a site. It’s one of the principal, if not the main responsible for the appearance of a community that revolves around Visual Novels in general. I love this site, and I appreciate the people that back this site paying monthly (I hope I can do it as well when I get the chance) and the mods for doing their jobs correctly and every other person that supports this site. But, I’d like to tackle the issue of trying to host translation projects in a forum-based website.
     I’d like to point out that the system created in Fuwa worked very VERY well at the beginning stages of the creation of this community. Basically, the “Fan Translator Skills” thread and the “Translation Projects” thread were probably very useful and effective back when the community was niche and not a lot of projects and teams crowded the scene (I’m not directing this towards the “Fan TL Discussion” thread, by the way).
    But, as a leader of a translation team (and I’m sure that many people will agree with me on this) I just think that Fuwa’s way of hosting projects is not as effective as it was probably two or three years ago.
    What I’m trying to say here is that, just like VNDB exists, a platform that focuses solely on helping teams and individuals to work on projects will certainly appear at some point, or at least needs to appear at some point. Summing up, Fuwanovel as a forum focused on the discussion of Visual Novels and the fan translation scene is a very good and positive website, and it’s totally needed for the community to keep growing, but! Fuwanovel (the forums) used as a platform to support projects and teams may have been very effective in the past but not anymore, since now the scope is very broad and more complex compared to when all of this started.
    Finally, to close this rant, I’d like to say that if I had to sum up things probably the most important issue would be that the community is losing the sense of being together, and groups, as well as individuals, are distancing themselves from each other, which is something that has to be avoided at all costs. I’ll personally try to do whatever I can about this matter and little by little this problem will hopefully be solved in the future, because together we can do great things.
    Let’s try to make the translation world great again, as Trump as it sounds.
     
     
     
  9. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to littleshogun for a blog entry, Go Go Nippon: My First Trip to Kyoto Review   
    Visual Novel Translation Status (06/18/2016)
    As for the title because this week VN from VNTS Image header was had same premise as Go Go Nippon, only we going to Kyoto instead of Tokyo, I'd use the title Go Go Nippon and for the expansion we had My First Trip to Kyoto because the VN Setting was in Kyoto.
    This week, to be honest it was quite plain if we looking from the progress that Decay made. But from Steam we had many exciting announcement from there. First, we had KARAKARA demo release, which to be honest I'm still not playing it yet (I'll write my impression later). Second we had Meikyuu release announcement next week, which should be enough if you looking forward to Yuuji story (If not enough ie want to see more H-Scenes, well too bad you must wait for a while). For last announcement, we'll had Muv Luv released at July 14th. My question is will they using new opening or not, other than that I think it's quite redundant release imo because we already had this translated some times ago. But if some of you want to read Muv Luv using new translation, go ahead and you may looking forward to July 14th.
    For Sekai, the progress here was good in some VN, while we also had questionable progress like Maitetsu (Decreasing? What's happened here). As the roundup, Darekoi was had the biggest jump here (From 79% to 90.01%), while for Love, Guitar, and Nashville it was at 77.7% (Lucky number here). I'd checked Nashville and it was another yuri VN, and speaking about yuri VN, this week we had Highway Blossom released. As for more interesting project, looks like Sekai willing to update Tenshin Rahman and Chrono Clock regularly (This week both of the progess was at 29.99% and 19.19% respectively) so I'll keep my eyes on those two from now on. For last progressedps, we had 2236 at 62.77% translated and WEE Episode 3 at 97.15% translated. I think that's all for Sekai (KARAKARA and Meikyuu was already covered in previous paragraph).
    Since I'd already covered Muv Luv, for other segment first update we had Corona Blossom Chapter 1 was funded at 22,087 of 30,000 (Almost three quarter funded) with 2 weeks left. And for Hakuai, too bad that they need delay the release, but if they need that to fix the translation can't be help here I guess (Hopefully it could satisfy Zakamutt who find the initial Hakuai translation was disappointing). For last update, we didn't had Libra update, but Mikandi promised us that they'll give update 2 weeks each (Just like Mangagamer), and by the way they tell us that they often need to beg the translator to move faster. Oh, and they assured us that they were on schedule for the release. Let's see it later.
    From Mangagamer, we had surprise Tatarigoroshi release from them. As for next chapter, hopefully Mangagamer didn't take too long for releasing Himatsubushi, which is the shortest chapter in Higurashi. I'm waiting for Tatarigoroshi mod by the way. Forother announcements from them, wait for next week.
    Finally, for fan translation, we had usual progess here, although our Arcadeotic this time was managed to give us update for Bishoujo Mangekyou at the beginning of this week (8th script was 81% translated, and overall translation progress was at 97%. Also right now it was 18% edited). Tsui Yuri, this week we didn't had translation progress (But if you really need translation progress, Dergonu said he managed to translate 30 lines iirc) but we had major bump in editing from 8% to 29%. For Majokoi, we had 12% translation progess and apparently they planning to release prologue patch. Speaking about Majokoi translation group (Luna Translation), they add another project here although I didn't do enough research right now other than there's a 15% translated patch for this VN (Oh, the VN was Musumaker). And for Nursery Rhyme, according to the thread it was updated back at January before this update (Right now it was 56% translated). I only knew that this VN was came from same company as Tayutama for now.
    Koiken Otome, thanks Decay for give the progress because I just knew it. Anyway, for Koiken Otome right now it was at 92.38% QC-ing, and hopefully they managed to fight the DDoS attack that caused the project lead delay the release (According to the post, supposedly this patch will be released at June 5th, but because there was some troll had grudge against some community, he decided to attacking server that host the community by DDoS, and unfortunately Koiken Otome server was the same server as targeted one). For last update (Astral Air), looks like this time Supreme Tentacle was prove us that what Chuee promised will come true (Translation will picked up in summer). I knew that there's still some QC left, but hopefully it'll take no long time and if possible we had it released this year. As for the progress, it was 3.88% jump from last week (Will we see 4% jump I wonder), bringing Astral Air to 88.83% translated.
    For this week, I think that's all for my review and sorry if I miss some. See you next week.
    PS - Congratulations on English patch release from big breast nukige 'Kimonen demo Harem Guild', Quof. And if some reader like big breast, go get the patch and play it.
    PPS - Add one more progress here. For Hanasaki, right now they had Hikari's route translated at 12% progress.
  10. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Flutterz for a blog entry, Moe Repository #35   
    Gathering MOE has been a bit slow, not as many intro threads, but I persevere for the sake of MOE!


  11. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Deep Blue for a blog entry, My ramblings about stuff.   
    So... I can't sleep and since I was really bored I decided to write this tips about doing a translation in general (or ramblings whatever you want to call them xD ) this is aimed for those who are starting a project or want to start a new one.

    *I'll start by saying that If you really want to translate something just do it, don't pay attention to anyone just do it, nobody can stop you from doing it aside from yourself! (and maybe a C&D letter but that's a whole different topic that I wont address right now xD). 
    *Before starting a project be sure that you LOVE the vn you want to translate or you are  getting paid for the job in that case what you want it doesn't really matter xD , you are going to work hours with the same text, fixing errors, reading over and over the same lines so if you don't actually love the vn you are working with sooner or later you are going to give up and drop it.
    *This point might sound silly having the previous one but read the vn at least 2 times before starting the translation, you really need to know the plot and every little aspect of it, if you don't understand the plot or some parts of it, how a character thinks or why he/she acts the way it does etc you wont be able to do a good job, this is essential!

    *Internet is you friend, if you don't understand something google it, you will find the answer sooner or later, if you search in Japanese is better, most of the time someone in yahoo or some similar website already asked that question (yes I've seen japanese people asking for some really basic stuff there!) there are tons of webs where you can find examples of a word if you don't understand how it works in some specific context (weblio for example) and last you have fuwa and some great users who are always willing to help you out. I hate asking for help so I try to avoid it as much as, also the satisfaction for achieving something for yourself is much more rewarding than just asking and having the answer served for you.

    *Work a little bit every day, eat the whale one bait at a time.

    * And last but not less important, have fun while you are doing it, if it's not fun then it's not worth it! Most importantly translate for yourself! Don't translate something because someone else might like it or because is really popular (I'm looking at you moe vns), you are wasting your time, this might sound selfish but if you don't enjoy what you are doing, eventually you are going to drop it.

    Now this is something I asked myself a lot of times and I was sure I had the answer but I didn't...
    Did I improve my Japanese because of the translation aka "Do you learn Japanese by translating something"? It's hard to say, I did learn several sexual terms, if that counts for something... even some really obscure ones that I want to forget Overall I don't think so (yes Decay was right on this one) if you get stuck too often then it's probably a good idea to postpone the translation for a few months, learn more and get back to it later on. (This is what I did the first time I started translating this vn 4 or 5 months ago)
    And that's pretty much it 

    I want to thank everyone that helped me throughout this project, Schwarzstorch who hacked the game, edited most of the images and helped me out with pretty much everything (he worked for more than 2 hours with a picture of a dick lol sorry dude!!)  Outofthebox for helping me out with the editing (oh boy did I bother him xD) to Arcadeotic for editing the text too, XReaper for all the amazing advice, MikeY91 for being the first beta tester and Tyrosyn for testing the patch and giving such an amazing feedback, finally to all the guys who helped me in the Japanese help thread.

    Until next time じゃあな
  12. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Dergonu for a blog entry, Tsui Yuri translation project update   
    Gonna go ahead and make this update here as well. When I have something more than just the weekly update to share about the project, I'll make a blog post about it on my own blog, (so I don't spam the dev feed.)
     
    Hello everyone! Today I have great news, and some kind of meh news. First the good news!
    Porygon has finalized the patch making tools, so we can now get all sorts of stuff worked out. (Previously we had issues with the text not displaying right, some symbols dissapearing etc. That's all gone now.)
     
    On the translation side of things, I had some days off this week and got some decent work done. The progress has moved quite a lot since the last update. (Progress update and more is below.)
    Now for some meh news. I have a really important exam in one week, (like, if I don't study like crazy, I am so failing it,) and so I am kind of studying myself to death here. Because of that, next week I wont have a lot of time to translate. I will still make updates like usual, but expect like, a miniscule amount of progress the next week or two, as I try my hardest not to fail and screw up my life
    Also, @Meat_Bun1 is back on the project as an editor, and he will be fixing all the silly mistakes left in by me.
     
     
    Anyways, progress time!
    Here is the progress, and also, for those interested, a few pictures of the translation in game. (Note that these pictures have completely un-edited lines, so ... You know, this is not the quality of the final translation.)
    Progress:
     
     
    Pictures:
     
     
  13. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Arcadeotic for a blog entry, Bishoujo Mangekyou TL Update 17   
    Hooray for huge progress.
    This week has been a blast to translate. I was somewhat saddened nd disappointed that I didn't get to my goal last week and get the script file completed. Well, that's the past, more so because I got two script files finished.
    That's right. 6th and 7th script file are now fully translated, which means I went through about 100 kB of text, maybe a bit more, this week. I feel so good now. 
    Anyways, this means that this is the biggest update yet, surpassing the second update on this site, that was almost 10%.
    Now one final wall stands in the way of this game being fully translated. I aim it to be done in a month  or so. Look forward to it.
    Translation: 7/8 script files finished (~83%)
    Editing: 9,2%
    QC: 0%
    Proofreading: 0%
     
    See you again next week.
  14. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Dergonu for a blog entry, Tsui Yuri ~ translation project - TLC needed!   
    Tsui Yuri ~Okaa-san ni wa Naisho da yo~
     
     
    Looking for:
    Translation checker: 1
    Position filled.
     
    Information:
    We currently have a TLC on the project, however, due to him being very busy with other projects, we need one more for the team.
    The game is not very long, and the language used in it is fairly fluffy, but we are still looking for someone who are well versed in the Japanese language. 
    As the translator on the project, I have to be honest and say that my personal level of Japanese is not top tier. (That is not to say it's bad of course.) 
    The game itself is, like I said, not very difficult and fairly short, so I am confident I can produce a good translation for it, however I do find myself making small mistakes from time to time, (fairly small, usually insignificant mistakes, but I want the final product to be as professional as possible.) Also, every now and then I find a line I can't really make sense of. (For refrence, this has happened 2 times during the translation of over 10% of the game, so it is not a common occurrence.) I will then mark the sentence in the script and make sure the TLC will be able to pay close attention to that particular line, in order to make sure there are no uneccessary mistakes in the translation before it goes into editing. 
    So, if you are interested in helping out, leave a comment or send me a PM on the forum. Alternatively you can reach me at Dergonu@gmail.com
     
    The team has several hardworking individuals on it, and I am very motivated to get this translation done.  
    Let us know if you are interested in helping out! 
    Link to the project page:
     

     
  15. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Ariurotl for a blog entry, If You Liked It, You Shoulda Clicked on It: HunieCam Studio   
    I won't lie, I enjoyed HuniePop. It was a fun little Bejeweled clone + vestigial eroge + cynical message about base human nature. It was fun to play, fun to replay and even fun to try and 100%-complete. Fun, fun, fun.
    The developer's second game is, in many ways, an entirely different animal, at least as far as gameplay and graphics are concerned. Sex scenes are gone, the art style is markedly different, and the genre is probably best-described as a real-time click-happy time management game. In HunieCam Studio, the player takes control of a camwhore operation and has to keep it running by recruiting and managing up to 18 different girls (including the entire "basic" cast of HuniePop, complete with shamelessly reused voice assets).
    After employing girls, you can have them perform various activities, the most important of which are (obviously) camming, which earns you money, and posing for dirty photoshoots, which earns you fans. More fans = more money earned from subsequent cam sessions. Fans themselves are attracted to particular fetishes (teen, latina, etc etc), and when a girl performs a photoshoot, she earns new fans based on fetishes she satisfies. Similarly, only fans attracted to a particular fetish will watch the cam session. Each girl starts with two distinct fetishes (distributed in such way that no two girls share both) and can acquire more by means of accessories that you can procure from the adult shop. Each girl also has two skill attributes that can be trained. Talent increases money earned from camming, while Style gets her more fans from the photoshoots. It's all rather straightforward.
    Other activities girls can perform include shopping for alcohol or cigarettes (some girls drink and/or smoke, and you have to keep the supply up or they'll get stressed), performing at the strip club (which increases Talent), shopping for clothes (which increases Style), recruiting new girls at the model agency, browsing the adult shop (which lets you pick up one of six random accessories upon completion), relaxing at the spa in order to remove stress, and... visiting a hotel for some "private time" with rich clients. Yes, you can actually be a pimp in this game. I wonder if Steam folks are even aware of that.
    All of this happens in nigh-unpausable real time. I mean, sure, you can pause easily by bringing up various management screens, but it's not the kind of game that lends itself to tinkering with things at your leisure. Virtually every resource you earn (money, fans, booze, even friggin' skill points) must also be manually extracted from corresponding buildings by rapidly clicking them (or, mercifully, by clicking and holding LMB). The process can be automated via upgrades, but even then resources trickle very slowly when you're not actively extracting them, and since you can't manually extract them from multiple buildings simultaneously, you're forced to prioritize. Furthermore, you can speed up any current activity using the same method, but ain't nobody got time for that when you're busy gathering the money. All in all, I more or less hated the gameplay in HunieCam Studio. It's simultaneously stressful and boring (I didn't even know that was possible), and all novelty wears off within half an hour, leaving nothing but grind to look forward to. Once you get to 4-5 employed girls, the game turns into the proverbial equivalent of herding cats.
    Moreover, some elements of the gameplay system are a bit... illogical. For example, since fans are attracted to a fetish (and NOT to a particular girl), you can have a girl with maxed-out Style do all the photoshoots, and have another girl with maxed-out Talent (and same fetish) do all cam sessions. I'm not an expert at this sort of thing ((c) Kazami Yuuji), but wouldn't at least some of those imaginary people want to see a cam show starring the girl they've actually seen in photos, rather than some other girl who also happens to have Huge Tits or Thick Ass? Not to mention that the above approach is actually more efficient for the player, in terms of both income and time management. Girls' salaries increase exponentially with each skill point earned, and it makes very little sense to level one girl in both Style and Talent. After all, she can't be in two places at the same time, and two girls trained in Talent or Style, respectively, will earn you the same amount of money or fans (and their combined salaries will be lower), with the added bonus of, y'know, being able to do two things instead of one. The game makes specialization in a narrow range of fetishes much more appealing than diversification, but purposefully inhibits your initial ability to specialize. This is solved by hiring girls with matching fetishes (as I said above, no two girls have two identical fetishes, so there is some recruiting strategy involved) and equipping them with identical accessories, thus giving them more matching fetishes. So yes, specialization in both skills and fetishes is the best way to play...
    But why would you do that to yourself? Once you get the message, check out all the bios (some of them are admittedly funny), listen to girls' soundbites the first few times and click on things for a while, HunieCam Studio has nothing more to offer you. Now, I hear you can unlock outfits and hairstyles in a similar vein to HuniePop, but I couldn't even get that far. At some point it became clear to me that I'm wasting my fucking time, which is a minor miracle considering how much of said time I generally waste on games without stumbling upon the above realization.
    Maybe I'm just not the kind of person that gets hooked on a game like HunieCam Studio, that is a definite possibility. So, you know, I wouldn't advise against buying it. Hell, I had my share of mild chuckles over the course of 2 hours I spent in it. Maybe I'll even go back and resume managing my collection of DFCs (it's one of the easier fetishes to build around, what with two girls who don't demand a lot of money and can be specialized... I wanted to build around fiery latinas at first (cause, you know, thatsmyfetish.gif), but the goddamn Brazilian chick with pre-maxed skills drove me to bankruptcy, so there's that). But the bottom line is, the gameplay is just not very fun unless you're a grind monkey addicted to floating numbers. 'Tis a shame.
  16. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Clephas for a blog entry, Do you like Japan?   
    This is a question I wonder if many people here have asked themselves... do you honestly like Japan, as a country (whether you've visited or just look in from the outside)?  My own feelings are... mixed.  Japan has a pretty fascinating culture that is essentially a scrapbook of various elements drawn from cultures that contacted it that were then evolved based on what the people of a given era wanted/needed.  However... the country itself is pretty problematic looking at it from the outside.  Political corruption, resurgent nationalism, toleration of organized crime, and the tendency to ignore all 'domestic issues' by those outside the household in question (including the police) are all reasons to be ambivalent about Japan.  However, the closeness of police to people's lives (the kouban system), otaku culture, and the traditional aesthetic values of Japan are pretty interesting. 
    We all have our reasons for the way we feel about Japan, if we feel anything.  If you'd asked me fifteen years ago, I would have unhesitatingly chosen option 1, but the more I studied, the more I realized just how many problems the country just fails utterly to deal with.  That said, if you asked me the top three countries - other than my homeland - that I'd be interested in living in, Japan would still be number one.  Why?  I got addicted to hot springs after a visit to one in Arizona, and studying history is one of my major hobbies.  Pretty hedonistic of me, eh? 
  17. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Arcadeotic for a blog entry, Bishoujo Mangekyou TL Update 8   
    I was going to post this yesterday but lol IPB
    Anyways
    This went exactly like the last week's update, life sucks, I know
    Sigh
    Nothing much else, here's hoping that next week will go a bit better, but who knows? I certainly don't.
    Progress:
    'Till next week, unless the whole world explodes now
    -  Arcadeotic
  18. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Dergonu for a blog entry, Shuffle! Review   
    Before I begin, I just wanted to say that I've gotten some feedback lately that my "reviews" have been fairly ... Laid back and not too serious. This is completely true, and I've written this with that feedback in mind. This is a much more objective, serious review of a game that I've wanted to review for a while. Hope you enjoy reading it, and please keep giving me feedback that can help me improve, I do appriciate it.
     
    Shuffle! Review,
    By Dergonu, fuwanovel
     
    Shuffle is a romance / fantasy visual novel originally released by Navel in 2003/2004. The game was later licensed and translated by Mangagamer, along with its two sequels Tick! Tack! and Really? Really! (You can buy the games here: (nsfw content on the game's page.)
    In the game you play as Tsuchimi Rin, a fairly normal high school student. When Rin was younger he met two beautiful young girls by chance, and spent the day playing with them. It turns out though, that these fate encounters would later change Rin's life forever.

    Shuffle offers 5 romantic routes as well as a common route, the story featuring elements of romance, drama, fantasy and comedy. (Note that a newer version of the game called Essence+ offers a whole roster of new characters and heroine routes not found in the original release, but this version is un-translated, and is not the version covered in this review.)
    The main story takes place in a fantasy universe where two portals have opened in the human world. These portals connects our world to the world of the Gods and the Devils. Contrary to popular belief, Devils and Gods are not omnipotent almighty beings which hate one another, but instead they are fairly similar to us, and the two races live alongside each other in peace. The Devils and Gods do have magical powers, and certain features does make them look slightly different, the primary attribute being their long ears. In the game, we follow Tsuchimi Rin in his everyday life. It has been 10 years since the portals opened, and Gods, Devils and humans live alongside each other peacefully.
     
    The overall look of the game is very nice for such an old novel. The art is pretty to look at, with nice sprites and colorful, well drawn backgrounds.  The menu is detailed and easy to navigate, offering a great variety of settings to improve your experience. There is a date display in game, and choices will affect which heroine's route you enter. The choices are very plain and easy to understand, often literally containing the name of the characters to make it easy to choose the heroine route. In addition, the game has no bad endings, so playing it blindly with no walkthrough is risk free.
    Once you enter a heroine route, a sprite of the heroine will be displayed during scene changes, so you know when you have entered a route. All these things taken into consideration, Shuffle is a very laid back and casual visual novel experience, but that in itself isn't necessarily a bad thing.

     
    The music in shuffle goes hand in hand with the other elements we have discussed so far. It's very light and very simple. Each one of the normal tracks played throughout the primary part of the common route and the start of the heroine routes are simple, light and cute. They offer simple instrumental music with slight variation that glide smoothly into the background.
    The tracks unlocked later on during the final dramatic parts of the routes, feel like they are on a different level from the earlier ones. They do a better job of making the player feel engaged in the game, as they feature more detailed instrumental music which fits the setting very well.
    The music tracks in the game are all enjoyable of course, and fit nicely with the feel of the game, but if more effort was put into making all the tracks like the last few ones, then it would allow for even greater immersion in the game, something that could possibly make the game better than it already is.  
    Still, every track is very comfortable to listen to and none of them are disruptive in any way.
     

     
    Among the five heroine's routes, each story offers a fairly similar structure. It starts of very light, introducing one small piece of information casually that will later turn into a dramatic twist to the route. This small catalyst is easy enough to spot early on, and figuring out vaguely what is going to happen is fairly easy. That being said, the game still does a decent job at hiding exactly what it is that is going on. The primary part of the heroine's route will be about Rin and the girl falling in love, and developing their relationship. The game offers 2 H-Scenes for each character, with CG variations based off your choice in the route, and an epilogue which takes place after the events of the main route. As the story progresses, the catalyst which was introduced earlier will start to become more present in the story, and a big climax towards the end filled with drama will occur. This can remind you of a normal nakige build up, but the last dramatic part is so short and gets overpowered by the lightheartedness of the previous part of the game so strongly, that it can't be called a nakige at all.   
     

     
    The game re-uses a fair share of the same situations and conversations during the early part of the heroine routes. These only have certain new lines of dialogue, making the scene itself the same. This comes off as lazy, and gets old after the second route. At the very least, short new events should have occurred during these parts to make these scenes slightly more entertaining. This is luckily only the case for the beginning of the route, and the later parts are all completely unique to each heroine.
    Sia's route is supposed to have two variations, but similar to the previous problem mentioned above, they simply re-use the scenes with tiny changes in the dialogue. The final experience is the same, and so it feels almost pointless to have these two variants, as they simply don't do anything majorly different from one another. It is not a good / bad end type of deal, but instead two sides of the same ending, with all the scenes identical, except for certain variations in dialogue and the character's behavior. This is a little bit of a shame, as Sia's route is very good. Had the two sides of the route been pulled off in a better way, this route would have been even better.
     

    Primula, Asa and Sia's routes are the only ones that has "believable drama".  The other two routes doesn't make you feel like what is happening is really a big deal at all. It is trivial drama that doesn't have any real impact compared to what happens in the routes mentioned above. This is not to say that the routes are bad because of this, but it does make the game feel a little inconsistent, as if the two routes which feel less impactful are played after the other three, then you won't really be that pleased with the end result. Actually, one of these routes has to be played before Primula's route is unlocked, so only one of the routes actually have that problem.
    The endings in the routes also feel a little bit rushed. Once the drama is introduced, the player has almost no time to let it sink in and feel the effects of it, before it is resolved. This makes the novel lose some potential, as it doesn't feel like there is any "risk" to it at all. It's almost as if the game is saying that something bad could happen, but then it instantly corrects itself, saying don't worry, we wouldn't actually do this!
    Still, with those factors in mind, the story in the game is still enjoyable. The actual core of the heroine routes does a good job of making the player care for the heroine and about what happens to her, and seeing as the game instantaneously lets you know that it is a very laid back, plain and casual experience, the slightly rushed endings and not overly dramatic parts are to be expected.  
     

     
    To sum up, Shuffle! is a very light and simple, yet effective visual novel. It does a good job of making the player care for its characters, as long as the player is willing to accept the game's light hearted and simple atmosphere.
    The music and art in the game is well made, especially the art and backgrounds. Considering the age of the game, it is in fact quite pleasantly surprising to see such nice artwork in the game. The music could have had even more effort put into it though, as there is a clear difference in quality between a few of the tracks.
    The routes are a little inconsistent, and offer parts which are essentially just copy pasted with slightly altered dialogue. This alongside the predictability of certain events, the game loses a bit of its potential.
     
    + Nice art, music and well made menu makes for an enjoyable experience.
    + The story is enjoyable overall, and does a good job of making the reader care for the heroines
     
    - The drama in the later parts of the game ends far too fast, and are essentially pointless
    - The game loses potential with the lack of variation in its re-used scenes, especially in Sia's route
     
    Rating: These things taken into account, shuffle! gets a 7.8/10 rating
     
     
  19. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Arcadeotic for a blog entry, Bishoujo Mangekyou TL Update 6   
    Yet another update.
    I was busy, but at least got something done.
    6th or 7th H-scene done. Finally the story is progressing, and the heroine is finally showing something to like about.
    Nothing else to say, but now that there is an official TL thread, I'll be posting my progress there and my wordpress, so there won't be a progress bar here, but I'll try to post my thoughts on every week's translation here. Good? Good.
    Progress:
     
    See you next week!
    -  Arcadeotic
  20. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Arcadeotic for a blog entry, Bishoujo Mangekyou TL Update 5   
    Another Saturday, another update.
    This week was full of needless things for me. Travels, schoolwork, visiting relatives, ugh.
    But enough of that, I'm still quite content with the amount of progress I got, even if it is about the same amount as last week.
    I really do hope to get more done in the following weeks.
    Update here:
    -----------------------------------------------------------------
    Week 5: 204,5 kB/710 kB (28,8%)
    -----------------------------------------------------------------
    Until next week
    -   Arcadeotic
  21. Like
    DarkZedge reacted to Dergonu for a blog entry, Kimihane kanojo review   
    Hey everyone! So it's time for another review, this time of a yuri title that I just finished last night, Kimihane Kanojo to kanojo no koi suru Ikkagetsu. I got recommended this a little while back and decided to read it because I thought it was just a short yuri nukige. But boy was I wrong ...
     
    The story:
    The story is quite lighthearted and simple, three girls who think they saw an angel when they were younger live together in a dorm. These three girs get along very well and the story is just their daily lives unfolding before our eyes. Or, rather, it is actually being seen by someone else. The story is told in a third person narrative, being looked at by a mystery person. The third person narrative is quite interesting; its something I haven't seen much off in VNs, and it made for a fun experience, reading an untranslated novel in the third person.
    It's a novel strongly built on the slice of life element. The story is split into 4 chapters, with 4 routes, each route has its own unique twist on the four chapters, with new CG, dialouge and events.
    The routes are each coupling, Rin x Hina, Hina x Fumi, Fumi x Rin, and finally a secret route unlocked after the completion of the previous three.
    Each scene during the game tends to be quite specific and short, but in return there are many of them. So let's say they are sitting in the living room having dinner, there is a short sequence where they do that, then it suddenly switches to a different scene, let's say, they are now at school. This is actually a very comfortable way to read an untranslated novel for me, as its very easy to get the context of the conversation. Also, story wise, there is a reason for this specific short scene duration, and it is revealed during the last, hidden route.
    There is an enforced playing order, where a new route is unlocked after the current one is finished. Also, there are NO choices in the game. You get some unique dialouge choices in the form of these screens:
    However these have no effect on the routes and the story at all, and they are simply small unique scenarios.
    All in all, the story is very light and cute, the language in the novel is simple, but it still keeps you entertained the entire time. Similar to Sono Hanabira, it focuses strongly on it's character interatcion.
     
    The characters:
    The story offers very few characters, only four of which has a sprite. These four characters are the ones who make up the bulk of the game's story.
    These characters are:
     
    Hina:

    Hina is kind of the little sister in the group. She is super adorable; a small girl with a loud voice. (She tends to yell a lot.) She does a lot of stuff that just makes you go, "aww", but unlike Fumi, she is quite ... Noisy. She isn't a fragile and gentle little girl, but rather a loud and energic one.
    She spends a lot of her time yelling at Rin, and this makes her appear more like an older sister, despite her role in the little "family" being the little sister/daughter.
     
    Rin:

    Rin is my favorite character of the three. She is a slob, managing to put her glasses in the fridge like 8 times during the story. She sleeps in all the time and is always yelled at by the little energy bomb that is Hina. Basically everything Rin does will make you laugh. She is less innocent and more direct and frank, making her do hilarious stuff like roleplay sexual scenarios with Fumi's stuffed animals, get in bed with Fumi telling Hina to look away as "mama and papa" are going to be doing grown up stuff. She will make you laugh a lot, and thats what I loved about her.
    Of course, just like the other two she has sides of her which aren't so clear, that you learn more about during the routes.
     
    Fumi:

    Fumi is the mother among the three. She is very polite and formal, always takes care of the housework and steps in as a peacekeeper whenever the two others start quarreling. She is gentle and adorable, but just like Rin, she has different sides to her which are discovered during the routes.
     
    Lastly, Sachiko:

    Umm.. She is the ... Middle aged dorm manager who keeps on touching the girls... She also tries to pay them to be painted nude. ..  uhh.. Someone call the police..?
     

     
    General impressions and thoughts:
    Like I said in the introduction, Kimihane looked like your average yuri nukige to me, but wow was I wrong. It is by no means a nukige; I'd probably call it a moege, (as there are only 2 H-scenes per route and quite a lot of cute and adorable, lighthearted dialouge and scenes dominate the game.)
    The art in the game is really nice, with several CG variants for each scene and well done character details and sprites. This also makes the H-Scenes quite enjoyable, though like I said, the H-scenes were actually not what made me stick around for this one.
    Each character has a lot of developement throughout the story, and each route brings out a new side of them that we haven't seen before. This makes each route feel unique and very enjoyable. The humor in the game is quite entertaining, and the romance is well done, though its a little bit simple and moe like. Don't expect extremely prfound and deep relationships.
    Even though the story is so simple and light though, it doesn't make you feel bored or tired of what is going on. The characters keep the romantic routes interesting, but what really blew my mind was the hidden route. Once I played it, I just went... "Ohhhhh!" It did such a good job of suprising me and I think it will suprise you as well. I never saw that coming.
     
    Anyways, since the game is fairly short there isn't too much else to be said. Honestly, my conclusion is this: PLAY IT! It's short, its really cute and light but at the same time it has its moments where the story really takes you by suprise. The characters are wonderfull and entertaining and the art is really nice.
     
    I personally rated this a 9/10 on my VNDB, but keep in mind; I am yuri freak.
    I think a more objective rating would be something like a 7.5.  But this is definitely not something you should play just because it has yuri. It's quite the good little novel, and it left me seriously pleasantly suprised.
     
    That's it for today folks, thanks for reading!
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