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Plk_Lesiak

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Everything posted by Plk_Lesiak

  1. Sable’s Grimoire was, in my opinion, one of the most interesting and enjoyable OELVN releases of 2018 – the expansive, story-driven VN with a very unusual approach to the theme of monster girls impressed me both with the sheer amount of content and the stories it told. Featuring various mature themes but essentially devoid of sexual fanservice (if you didn’t read my original review, check it out here – it also includes a lengthy interview with the game’s developer, Zetsubou), it was a rare kind of uncompromising project, which didn’t really cater to the reader’s expectations or insert elements that would help it become commercially successful, but rather followed its creator’s particular vision, to a very compelling and fresh-feeling effect. Even with the basic premise – a human student entering a magic academy dominated by demi-humans – sounding relatively standard, the VN itself was, in many ways, unlike anything I’ve read within the EVN scene. Another significant detail about the Sable’s Grimoire, signifying its relatively non-commercial nature, was the promise of free updates from the developer, which would expand significantly on what was already an impressively-sized VN (over 20 hours of content) with additional story routes. First of these was meant to be the story of Tix, a short-tempered, but cheerful pixie, who because of an administrative mistake becomes the protagonist’s roommate – a route originally planned for the main game, but cut out because of the already-prolonged development cycle. In January 2019, 8 months after the game’s initial release, the promised update was finally made available, adding around 4 hours of new content and full heroine arc for Tix. So, how does it compare to the rest of the game and how much does it add to the already awesome value-proposition of Sable’s Grimoire? Read the full article at evnchronicles.blogspot.com
  2. What are you listening to right now?

    Not the kind of thing I usually post here but damn, this guy was so far ahead of his time. Such a talent. And if course, he ended up being forgotten and died before he could get back to the top. Fate truly is a b.....
  3. Summer Anime List 2019

    It's quite a contrast from the last season, isn't it? Senko-san is quite lovely though, I like where I think its going with the neighbour character. :3 I also quite enjoyed the opening episodes of Hitoribocchi, although I guess most people are sick of those intensely moe middle school comedies...
  4. Fuwanovel Confessions

    Hope it works out for you. I'm still under strong impression my gaming habits can only be controlled through (relative) abstinence. The only non-VN game I'm allowing myself nowadays is one of those browser/mobile idle MMOs. It's pretty great for my predicament as there's simply not that much to do there beyond a fixed, daily routine and you are rewarded for consistency and planning rather than sheer time investment. And the stream of rewards and possibility of interacting with guildmates are still decent enough. At least it's enough most of the time - my RL friend recently ressurected the WoW account we shared in the past and even though I still really like that game, I felt little temptation to join in, as I know I'd just burn tons of time and end up with huge hangover, while the thing I play now is just way more manageable and guilt-free. In general, I find my relapses into gaming rarer and less severe nowadays, but that's pretty much only through abstinence. I wouldn't trust any of it just on my willpower or discipline, as I have none.
  5. What's the point of editing it though? You'd just make the thread even more confusing. You should just properly respond to what other people wrote (other than Kiri, that is). I agree with most points others made here BTW. While Yuzusoft is definitely a company creating top-quality VNs and winning over audiences with just how memorable and fun their games are, Nekopara and HDN are meme factories that appealed to a more mainstream crowd and managed to go viral. If there are lessons in them that could help VNs be more successful... I'm not sure if they should be learned. It's not like those games don't have their appeal points (I've recently played the first Neptunia game and it was extremely cute, while Nekopara, while I find it intensely creepy, is undeniably stunning visually), but I wouldn't want most of my VNs to be like them. :< And from these companies, only NEKO WORKs did the "unusual" thing by releasing Japanese and English versions simultaneously from the very beginning. It worked out for them amazingly, but I don't think many companies would be able to repeat this kind of success and good-quality translation is still a large investment.
  6. An attempt at classifying protagonists

    Wouldn't Fate's Shirou start as a full-on useful idiot, getting more competent over time? Another thing coming to my mind are some protagonists in comedy anime, especially Konosuba's Kazuma. There would probably be some kind of equivalent of that in VNs?
  7. VN from the perspective of gender rebellion

    Nah, I think a good portion of Asia is like that. That's how people explained Barbie flopping spectacularly in China for example, while the super-cute brands like Hello Kitty sell wonderfully.
  8. VN from the perspective of gender rebellion

    I think there's more than that to characters such as Arcueid or Rin... But I guess I'm making assumptions, didn't go through the VNs themselves, only the associated media.
  9. VN from the perspective of gender rebellion

    Well, it definitely wouldn't hurt your case. I think [redacted (:p)] break these stereotypes to an extent, as do many other chuunige with proactive, strong heroines. Plot-oriented yurige like Fatal Twelve or Shadows of Pygmalion also create a different dynamic, from the sheer lack of male leads. Many otome VNs are, in a way, mirroring eroge, trading the passive heroines for a passive, spineless protagonist (but also, the heroes in them are often absolved from moral judgment, even if they're literally rapists or murderers - yandere love interests are plenty in otomege). There are important exceptions though, like Code: Realize or Cinderella Phenomenon (the last one being an EVN and those generally treat female characters differently). Maybe I'm fixating on agency a bit too much, but I see it as a broader rule. Wherever characters are just romantic or sexual objects (most moege and nukige, and also most otomege), they'll be absolved from everything as long as they love the protagonist and stay faithful to them (I mean... The romance wouldn't really work otherwise and most VNs go for wish fullfilment over anything else). When they're actors influencing a (proper) plot, what they do and how they behave will have a lot more weight.
  10. Site Work 03/17/19

    In what way? It works fine for me... At least as fine as it always did. ----------- This whole thing is sad, isn't it?
  11. Indie games have for many years now capitalized on players' nostalgia and included various throwbacks to the early eras of gaming, both aesthetically and gameplay-wise. However, while you can’t take a look at Steam without finding a dozen high-quality, retro platformers with pixelart graphics and "metroidvania" design elements, this trend have very rarely found a meaningful application in the world of VNs. While there are heavily-stylized titles such as the Otusun Club’s The Bell Chimes for Gold series, mimicking the aesthetic of the early Japanese eroge, these are pretty much rare exceptions, especially when it goes to games available in the West. This, however, doesn’t necessarily mean there’s no room for nostalgic throwbacks in the Western VN community. Many of the older dating sims and VNs, like To Heart 2 or Season of Sakura are actually available in English (both thanks to early localization companies such as JAST USA and, more importantly, fan translators) and highly appreciated by the players. And we're not even mentioning the general sentiment for older Japanese media among the more experiences Western otakus. Thankfully (?), this potential wasn’t completely overlooked by EVN developers – in the case we're talking about today, it led the tiny team under the name of Ascension Dream to coming up with Pantsu Hunter – Back to the 90s, a semi-humoristic romance VN/adventure game with beautifully-stylized, retro visuals and a period-appropriate storyline. Drawing a decent amount of attention and going through a successful Kickstarter campaign (me being one of its backers), the game finally arrived on Steam in January 2019, receiving a heavily mixed reception. So, what went wrong with a project this straightforward-looking and how it managed to disappoint despite its impressive artwork? Read the full article at evnchronicles.blogspot.com
  12. VN from the perspective of gender rebellion

    Uhhh, this might be true if you just look at moege, but in better plotge, some otome and much of yuri you'll easily find female characters with actual agency and whose actions have clear moral weight. The picture is not this black & white. Just don't expect a "breakthrough" when it goes to typical eroge - those games are like this because they cater to very specific needs of a very specific audience, and deviations from the formula rarely pay off for them.
  13. Is Euphoria worth it ?

  14. Is Euphoria worth it ?

    I'm pretty sure no one missed it. No one even said it's incomprehensible, it's just... Dumb and unconvincing. A good setup drowned in ridiculous, overly convoluted sci-fi dribble and over-the-top plot twists. I understand people loving this game for its atmosphere and the psychological parts, but I find the overarching mystery plot absolutely indefensible. It doesn't make the game awful IMO, but doesn't deserve to be treated seriously.
  15. Is Euphoria worth it ?

    Well, it's supposed to be better than euphoria and this VN was already not all bad (even though I agree with all the criticism you gave here). I'm personally still very curious about it, but I guess I also never believed the hype and there was nothing I could be disappointed about. Clock Up VNs are just a curiousity to me and even if they end up being memorable for all the wrong reasons, they're at least something different... ;p ---- And as a bonus, an extremely unpopular opinion from me: The longer I think about euphoria, the more convinced I am that Rika's route is my favourite, and possibly the best one in the game. Rika starts as an awful character, but thanks to that has a lot of growth potential and receives a ton of that later on. The arc shows the surreal horror of the surface parts of the story, but doesn't go into all those dumb explanations for it (cool mystery >>>> stupid reveals). And the creepy Stockholm syndrome aspect of it all is only fitting considering the primary theme of the underground parts - Makina is the perfect counterpart to the protagonist, drawing out his worst instincts and confronting him with them, and in the end they both receive redemption of sorts. In a way, it stays most fateful to the psychological horror aspects of the game.
  16. What are you playing?

    Well, yeah, but the game never really suggest he's average or not very capable. He would like to be average because of how messed up his life has been and he's occasionally resigned/brooding because he considers himself a murderer. I don't think these are even spoilers, it's established quite clearly early in the common route of Kajitsu, later parts only explain the details of his past and the work he does.
  17. Going back to VNs?

    I have some VNs I've stalled ages ago, but I have to find one I actually come back to... No because they didn't grab me, but exactly because they did and I want to play them when I have proper amount of time and attention to spare. Time and attention which I never have, even though I don't really circulate through non-otaku hobbies very much. I'm with Adamstan on this, days are way too short. :C
  18. Well, I was jokingly referring to the stereotypes/prejudices in the VN community, but I think those have real consequences. People see EVNs through the lenses of ecchi shovelware like Sakura games. With DDLC, many saw it pretty much as an insult to VNs as such, spreading a very simplified and degrading interpretation of what they are to the general public. Basically, a game spawned from negative stereotypes and reinforcing those significantly. Plus, many people abhorred the meme culture around it. I think these issues made the proper judgment of what the game offered and was able to achieve impossible for more than a few JVN fans (I don't suggest, of course, that there are no people that hated DDLC for very legitimate reasons, we all have different tastes and opinions). But, the main point is that I deal with stuff that for many hardcore VN fans is considered filth, or at least something not worth their time and they have no reason to pay attention to what I do. Plus, I think @Dreamysyu got another thing right. I'm just one guy with some very openly-expressed tastes and biases. Plus, the fact I only review EVNs might give the impression I'm some EVN-supremacist weirdo or don't read Japanese VNs, thus can't reasonably compare what I read with the high-budget most VN fans enjoy the most. Neither of it is true, as far as I can tell, but it's not like I didn't set up my blog exactly to go against the current. The end goal of what I'm doing IS to make the EVN/JVN distinction less important and my idea for it was an affirmative action of sorts - setting up space for discussion on those games that are more likely to be ignored by default and overlooked even if they're worth attention for various reasons. As the EVN market matures, I think we'll see more serious discussion about them and I'd like to think my stubborn insistence on promoting them might not be completely insignificant in driving this change forward. One can always dream...
  19. What Anime are you watching now?

    It simply means this is an exclusive thread, only for the best among Fuwans. The fact the dirty masses don't post in it only makes it that much better. You should be proud of your contributions. --------------------------------- Anyway, looking for mindless entertainment after a particularly tedious week I've started watching Kore wa Zombie Desu ka and uhhhmmm... Well, if surely excels in being random, but I'm not sure if any anime I've seen so far managed to do this little when it goes to plot. Authors apparently assumed that being wacky is enough for a comedy harem anime, and any kind of substance is optional.... ...and considering how relatively high the MAL rating for it is, I guess they were right. But I really enjoy these shows a lot more if they add some kind of stakes or at least consistent worldbuilding to the mix. Even utter-trash shows like the Smartphone isekai had a bit of that. You could argue this just aims to be a pure parody anime, spoofing fantasy action shows... But I don't find it funny enough to accept that as a proper justification. But, maybe I'm just weird. 6/10.
  20. Spring 2019 Anime Discussion

    I was so distracted with RL stuff that I forgot like 5 times to start this thread. My streak has been lost forever. I guess I'm exactly on the opposite side of the spectrum on this season? There are definitely things I'll watch, but I don't see anything I would truly care about so far. One Punch Man II is high on the list, but I got spoiled with how amazing Mob Psycho 100 II was (it became my second 10/10 on MAL) and I doubt it will come anywhere close to it. There's also Senko-san and Isekai Quartet for comedy. I'll probably try Fruit Basket, but I know nothing about the previous anime, so I'm not in any real way excited. Kimetsu no Yaiba started decently, but people overhype it to insane levels. The first episode felt quite cheesy to me, but maybe the next ones will be able to dispel this impression.
  21. Birthday thread

    Happy Birthday to @Dreamysyu and @Zalor!
  22. What are you playing?

    Oh, I guess there's indeed an up-to-date English version now! I guess I'll... Check it out. To see how short the story actually is if you avoid the h-content. I was always extremely curious about the theme and if there's that little story... I can at least read it in one evening. :3
  23. What are you playing?

    Anyway, quite an excellent little game. Makes me want to try Dorei to no Seikatsu even more, even though I feel like I should wait for when it gets more or less finished. It looks like the author still pushes out major updates and the fan patches aren't exactly up-to-date...
  24. After the impressive success of the freeware VN/strategy hybrid Sunrider: Mask of Arcadius the game’s developer, Love in Space, soon started working on a sequel, doubling down on their policy of directly imitating the Japanese visual novel formula and apparently devoting much of their newly-found resources and experience to exactly that end. When the highly-anticipated Sunrider: Liberation Day finally released, on March 2016, it came armed with Japanese voice-acting, Japanese theme song and extra amounts of fanservice, ready to conquer the Western-otaku audience with its bombastic facsimile of Japanese eroge. Thus, one of the most amusing chimaeras in the history of the OELVN scene was born, once more to a decent commercial success and mostly positive reception. Setting the slightly-absurd “Japanization” aside, Liberation Day is, above all, a sequel of a well-known and, for the most part, respected game, that did much to promote visual novel formula in the West. Mask of Arcadius, as I think most people would agree, remains to this day one of the best VN “space operas”, especially among those officially released outside of Japan and fills a niche mostly unexplored by EVNs. As a sci-fi fan, a good continuation of the Sunrider story was something I really wanted to see and Liberation Day promised to offer just that, in an even grander and more compelling style. Did it deliver on those promises though and does it stand the test of time as well as its predecessor? Read the full article at evnchronicles.blogspot.com
  25. Birthday thread

    Happy Birthday To You, @Dergonu, you disgusting pervert! Holy shit, you're young.
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