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Finished Kanon. It was a beautiful (retro) experience despite a perfectible writing (for example, some endings were bad/botched and the H-scenes were horrible). Similarly, it was refreshing to follow a good and likeable protagonist (for once, he's not a stupid donkan).

Girl Ranking : Akiko (she's like a summer ray of sunshine just in the middle of Winter) > Nayuki (sweet sleepyhead) = Shiori = Kaori (but no route for her :wafuu: ) = Sayuri > Makoto (funny but too childish) = Ayu (funny but too much uguu kills the uguu) = Mai (a mysterious coodere...but a bit too quiet)

Route Ranking : Shiori (the classic moving story but with a truly satisfying closure)> Makoto (surprisingly touching) > Mai (the ending left me slightly puzzled...otherwise it was pretty, mysterious and poetic > Ayu (nice but too predictable) = Nayuki (interesting until we discover a rushed ending) > Sayuri (she deserved better)

Edited by Canicheslayer

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13 hours ago, Trickay said:

Started reading Steins;Gate 0, only just a couple of hours in. I was surprised how the first scene with the amadeus really gave me a sad feeling, even though I know this is set on the beta line. :mellow:

Remember that feeling, cause you'll not feel it much more. Almost everything in this VN feels 'irrelevant', because it's beta timeline and its' offshots. There are a couple of really intense scenes, great moments, but they will leave you with empty feeling of "actually nothing happened".

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I finally played Saya no Uta yesterday. It was very good; not like exceptional or earth-shattering, but very good. Just as importantly, it was also extremely different from what I usually read, and it's nice to have a change of pace every now and then. My favorite part of it was how the game simultaneously made certain characters both repulsive and sympathetic. That's not a common or an easy thing to do, and it leaves you in a really strange mental place, which is a feeling I'm kind of savoring.

That said, I'm looking forward to playing something more straightforward. I've been wrapping up things I wanted to do, lately, so I'm either going to read WEE Episode 3 or, more likely, finish up Fruit of Grisaia. Both have been hanging over my head for a while, especially the latter. Plus, that'll give me an excuse to read the common route again...

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Finished Nekopara vol.3. As usual, the art is gorgeous and the H-scenes are hot (except one because I don't have an urination fetish). Having said that, this episode was so boring (weak story, stereotyped characters...nothing new under the sun). I read ALL the four episodes... I think I'm a closet pervert masochist  :wafuu:

Reading Private Nurse (Edit : finished Ayano's route). Nothing awesome or original but it is fairly pleasant. The protagonist is  stupid (a bit hetare, maybe) and immature but Ayano and Maria are cute girls (Edit : the nurse seems cool too) :mare: Oh ! I almost forget : I like the art (Edit :  except Ayano's H-scenes).

Edit : Finished the neutral ending. It's short and slightly bitter. Not bad.

Edit : Finished Mio's "Route"...It was a bad joke :reeee:

Spoiler

1497353720-privatenurse001.jpg

 

Edited by Canicheslayer
2.3

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Tada ! Finished Private Nurse. To sum up, it was a pleasant reading (bittersweet and nostagic atmosphere, beautiful ending, nice girls, interesting themes) but this could have been better :sachi:

The protagonist is a moron (classic...I know), the writing is a bit messy (one rushed route/ending, too many monotonous passages) and lazy (some h-scenes are repeated) and the art is a dizzying rollercoaster : the regular h-scenes are average (or even bad) but somes CGs are truly memorable (ex : see my avatar).

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So I actually finished a VN that I dropped before. I somehow got bored with Da Capo 3 and therefore picked up almost out of pure desperation - surprise, surprise - Chusingura again. ^_^

24280.jpg

I wasn't too fond of the first chapter because it had some glaring flaws and therefore had a hard time to get used to it. But since the VN got a lot of praise I decided to give the VN a second chance. Fortunately, the second chapter improved on almost all fronts and I therefore continued and read all chapters. I'll now review each of the five chapters and give it an individual rating.

1. Chapter

This was the introductionary chapter and centered around Kuranosuke and the Ako retainers. Okay, admittedly I bashed its first chapter pretty hard before. While some of it was IMO well deserved, the flaws might have overshadowed the strengths a bit too much. Mainly because the first chapter was still pretty rough around the edges with comedy and drama parts rather poorly balanced, the unfitting oversexualisation of many character designs and - my main gripe -  the Franken-romance with Kuranosuke's Yoda form. Though the story events itself were still interesting and Shimizu Ichigaku was a pretty cool character that stood out from the rest of the cast. And I have to admit that Kuranosuke and Fuwa grew on me in the later chapters. 6/10

2. Chapter

This chapter was centered around Yasubee and the Edo retainers. It was a massive improvement over the first chapter and also benefitted from the fact that I liked the Edo retainers Yasubee, Shinroku, Magodayuu and Koheita a lot more than the actual Ako retainers. But the real strength was the protagonist. He really grew in comparison to the first chapter and was very proactive, trying to investigate and solve the situation his way. I was also very impressed that he didn't just dump Kuranosuke for Yasubee. The situation just turned out completely different and he had pretty much no choice. And Yasubee getting together with him was a slow process. The chapter also managed to balance out comedy, story and drama very well. Especially the events around

Spoiler

Koheita

hit me very hard - I was close to tears. This time the writer was also very good to mix the whole moe theme with Japanese history very well. The ronin also have to go through real life struggles like poverty, hunger and betrayal. At times the whole atmosphere completely draws you in. Yasubee also grew very well as a character since she had to revise her somewhat stubborn black and white view of the world. Some negative points were that there were not enough revelations and the ending got a bit too slow and repetitive since it was very similar to the first chapter. Still, certainly one of the best written chapters. 8.5/10

3. Chapter

This chapter was centered around Chikara and the Edo characters again. Well, to be precise it was split between Shinpachi from the Uesugi faction and Chikara. This was a rather so so chapter. Pretty much pure filler with barely any relevance to the main story. The protagonist was kind of struggling which was okay at the start and I liked the parts with Shinpachi. But it got pretty annoying later on when he started playing drama queen. The whole romance with Chikara was also far too forced and barely believable, especially considering that the protagonist had 10 times more chemistry with Shinpachi than Chikara. And the ending also felt almost like copy & paste from the previous chapters. The chapter would have been vastly better if it would have focused more on the Uesugi family. I would have really liked to see some interaction with Irobe, the head of the family. 7/10

4. Chapter

This chapter was finally centered around the best character in the VN, Shimizu Ichigaku. She didn't get too much screen time in chapter 2 and 3, but this one was all about her. And while some might criticize this chapter as a bit too much of a history lesson, I found it intellectually absolutely brilliant. The writer did not only show here that he has some very impressive background knowledge about this era of Japanese history, he was also brilliant to interpret it in different ways. The protagonist was forced to question his own beliefs and look at the whole situation from the opposite side. Towards the end there were also some more revelations about the main story. Although the chapter was mostly brilliant it also had some negatives. It felt a bit rushed towards the end and the drama around the siblings felt a bit too constructed to prove a point. Chapter 2 was better in that regard. Overall the chapter was just as good as the second one. Chapter 2 was a bit better on the drama and romance side, but chapter 4 was better on an intellectual level. 8.5/10

5. Chapter

This was the last chapter and centered around Emoshichi. Honestly, coming from a brilliant chapter like the fourth and then having to read 'this' felt almost like a slap in the face. I knew that a chapter centered around an annoying airhead loli character like Emoshichi would be hard, but I also didn't expect it to be utter crap. I mean, although I found Emoshichi quite annoying and would vastly prefered Sayo for a loli route, I didn't hate her. But if the story arc pretty much contradicts itself from start to finish and the writer starts to literally defile and shit on his own story, lore and characters it's hard to say anything good about it.

I mean everyone knows that Emoshichi is about as talented in sword fighting as a giant space hamster. And she's also practically still a kid. So why try to make her Japanese next top samurai?! Why send her and Suguha away if their family needs them to get food and money since their father is ill? And while Asaemon was a rather quirky character (it was certainly no coincidence that she was voiced by the same voice actress like Natsume from Kara no Shoujo), she didn't harmonate with Emoshichi at all. They should have taken Emoshichi as she is and give her a more passive role instead of trying to turn her into Bruce Lee. Mini-rant:

Spoiler

And that 'let's kill the puppy training' was just bogus. And why pick Fuwa, the strongest figher, for a contest to prove she can't compete? If you really want to prove that someone is too weak you let him loose against one of your weakest members. And then Suguha's 'great' strategy to beat Fuwa: Let's provoke a berserker type fighter who run purely on emotions and gets exponentially stronger the more pissed she is. Their best chance would have been to hope that Fuwa is so overconfident looking at Emoshichi that she falls asleep during the fight. And the highlight was then Emoshichi almost beating Fuwa. What an absurd nonesense just to please a tiny audience with an airhead loli fetish.

And what hurts even more, is that the final revelation was pretty much squished into a small epilogue after this whole mess. It was almost like the writer had completely forgotten to write the ending and then tried to fix it one day before release. It still took some time to read it, but not because there was a lot of story. Instead it was maybe 20 - 30 minutes of relevant text wrapped into three hours of cling and clang sounds full of pointless fighting. It could have been really good if they would have dedicated the whole chapter to it. But nooooo we just need a kusoge chapter full of crap, centered around the most pathetic character in the whole VN. *sigh* 4/10

Anyway, as a whole this VN was one of the better ones I've read in a while. While it was still rough around the edges, it had some extremely well written parts and charaters. The writer is certainly talented. Most characters were drawn which is a rarity and it had some of the best fighting scenes I've seen so far (Shinpachi end fight was amazing). Back ground art could have been better, but I think they used photographic ones and for that they were good. They must have used a pretty good conversion technique. Though I have to say that the VN is mostly about the individual chapter stories. The overarching plot wasn't that good and barely touched in most chapters anyway. And for that I think a long common route followed by individual routes and actually satisfying endings would have worked much better. And Kuranosuke should have been one character with a multifaceted personality and not a split personality between clown and serious. She managed to be both one the best and worst written characters at the same time which was often totally confusing.

Revised overall rating: (6 + 8.5 + 7 + 8.5 + 4) / 5 = 7

Revised character rating: Ichigaku >> Jasubee > Shinroku > Shinpachi > Magodayu > Fuwa > Kuranosuke > Chikara > ...

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6 minutes ago, onorub said:

Starting the sixth chapter in Gahktun of the Golden Lightning. I may be sounding harsh, but reading it feels like the Demonbane writer read Shikkoku no Sharnoth and decided to write a story in the same style.

Or maybe it should be like 'Sakurai Hikaru was inspired by Demonbane and did her best to copied the style'. By the way, Sakurai Hikaru was the writer for both of Gahktun and Sharnoth.

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17862.jpg

So, I finally finished Sara's route in Da Capo 3. It was not as ridiculous as Charles' one but still suffered from extreme blandness resulting from an overglorified golf contest. And I better don't mention what I think about Sara's so called 'family' and the protagonist's utterly spineless reaction to them. I also think that Sara showed more character and personality in the common route than in her own route which might be due to different writers.

So, after two rather disappointing routes, I honestly don't feel any motivation anymore to continue with this VN. The overall heroine routes seem more like tagged on side stories anyway and having the true story centered around Aoi isn't particularly encouraging. I still feel burnt from Chusingura's Emoshichi chapter, and the pure thought of having to deal with an over-cutified annoying airhead loli again gives me already feelings of horror and despair.

I'm not really in the mood to write a long review, so I just write some key points down:

- In general, I don't think Da Capo 3 justifies as a nakige anymore - it's a pure moege. This wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, however...

- The VN characters seem shockingly less developed that the ones from its predecessors (or at least from DC2), with the soulless protagonist being a top offender

- The large text size gives you the impression that this is a very story rich title, but most of it seems filler text like radio transmissions or little side stories since both routes I've read so far felt rather short and tagged on with almost no effort put into them

- The VN felt unusually inconsistent even considering that it had six different writers with the prologue, common route and heroine routes feeling somewhat unrelated to each other

- The Harry Potter theme of the story had lots of potential, but the execution was extremely weak, often even lacking the absolute basics of common sense. Less would have been more here.

And as much as it hurts to say, I enjoyed this entry of the Da Capo series by far the least. Even if DC1 certainly wasn't that good, I at least enjoyed the Kotori and the hidden fox girl routes more. Maybe because my standards are higher nowadays - it doesn't really matter.

Overall, I'd rate it a 6/10 which already includes a nostalgia bonus, but because of the broken saving system that forced me to skip to the actual position after each reload, I subtract half a grade. Final rating: 5.5/10

Heroine rankings: Sara > Charles > Ricca > Himeno > Aoi

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1 hour ago, ChaosRaven said:

17862.jpg

So, I finally finished Sara's route in Da Capo 3. It was not as ridiculous as Charles' one but still suffered from extreme blandness resulting from an overglorified golf contest. And I better don't mention what I think about Sara's so called 'family' and the protagonist's utterly spineless reaction to them. I also think that Sara showed more character and personality in the common route than in her own route which might be due to different writers.

So, after two rather disappointing routes, I honestly don't feel any motivation anymore to continue with this VN. The overall heroine routes seem more like tagged on side stories anyway and having the true story centered around Aoi isn't particularly encouraging. I still feel burnt from Chusingura's Emoshichi chapter, and the pure thought of having to deal with an over-cutified annoying airhead loli again gives me already feelings of horror and despair.

I'm not really in the mood to write a long review, so I just write some key points down:

- In general, I don't think Da Capo 3 justifies as a nakige anymore - it's a pure moege. This wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, however...

- The VN characters seem shockingly less developed that the ones from its predecessors (or at least from DC2), with the soulless protagonist being a top offender

- The large text size gives you the impression that this is a very story rich title, but most of it seems filler text like radio transmissions or little side stories since both routes I've read so far felt rather short and tagged on with almost no effort put into them

- The VN felt unusually inconsistent even considering that it had six different writers with the prologue, common route and heroine routes feeling somewhat unrelated to each other

- The Harry Potter theme of the story had lots of potential, but the execution was extremely weak, often even lacking the absolute basics of common sense. Less would have been more here.

And as much as it hurts to say, I enjoyed this entry of the Da Capo series by far the least. Even if DC1 certainly wasn't that good, I at least enjoyed the Kotori and the hidden fox girl routes more. Maybe because my standards are higher nowadays - it doesn't really matter.

Overall, I'd rate it a 6/10 which already includes a nostalgia bonus, but because of the broken saving system that forced me to skip to the actual position after each reload, I subtract half a grade. Final rating: 5.5/10

Heroine rankings: Sara > Charles > Ricca > Himeno > Aoi

Notably, I have read Aoi's is, in fact, a bonus route, which is why it's locked. I have not, however, gotten to confirm if this is true.

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26 minutes ago, Mr Poltroon said:

Notably, I have read Aoi's is, in fact, a bonus route, which is why it's locked. I have not, however, gotten to confirm if this is true.

Which makes me wonder where all that 4 MB of text is actually hidden...

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Reading Air. I finished Misuzu's route. Whaow. I'm impressed. One of my best VN moments in 2017. The girl (a sort of Nayuki 2.0) is unquestionably cute and sweet (normally, airhead and/or childish girls are not my type). Her route is solid, sadly beautiful, and poetic (probably two times better than the best route in Kanon).

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On 2017-6-16 at 3:25 PM, onorub said:

Starting the sixth chapter in Gahktun of the Golden Lightning. I may be sounding harsh, but reading it feels like the Demonbane writer read Shikkoku no Sharnoth and decided to write a story in the same style.

Finished it and i may change my opinion after some time, but right now i'd say i liked Sharnoth better. I liked the atmosphere, the female lead AND the finale in that better. I will say the writing is less repetitive in Gahktun and the "main opponents" are more developed as well.

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Finished Kara no Shoujo a week ago. Still don't know how to react to the true end though. Currently trying to finish Kara no Shoujo 2 without the walkthrough. So, any advice for me, please? 

Edited by MarcoCorvus21

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@Fred the Barber's request, here are my thoughts on the first chapter of monster quest, all I've played thus far.

Short, no spoilers at all version: I really like everything but the H-Scenes. It's a puzzle-like game, and you can just skip the ones you don't like. And if you're good, unlike me, you won't even get to see 80% of them. The story is also my kind of thing: Saving the world, uniting humans and monsters, etc. etc.

 

I talk about rape repeatedly in the spoiler below. Please do not open if you're going to complain to me about it later.

Spoiler

 

I was tempted to play this one because I'd recently played other such games where "rape for love" and such was a thing. Furthermore, said game (titled "The Dungeon of Lulu Farea" or some such -- which, by the way, is a pretty good puzzle game and I recommend anyone who does not mind rape in their games to try) also involved monsters, so I thought this was a good a time as any.

Monster Girl Quest does various things I like, but the H-Scenes are not one of them. In fact, they're probably what I like the least. The protagonist is this shouta lad who -- when we, the player, lose -- has many horrible things befall him, all of them with some correlation to rape. The problem I have with this scenario is that there's no "love", whatever that is, involved. It also seems as if the ones raping take no particular pleasure in the act most of the time, and just enjoy tormenting. In other words, not my kind of rape, if that's a thing that makes sense.

But otherwise, I really like the game. The premise is good: the youngster who aspires to be a hero but doesn't so as manage to meet the minimum requirement to be one, and his travels with the Monster Lord, his ultimate target. Because of his puniness, every battle feels like a real struggle, and our companion, the monster lord, has an acidic tongue coupled with a depressing cynicism that hits me right in the heart, attempting to kill off all my idealism. What makes these travels so good are the way that the protagonist has his own beliefs, struggles with them, but continues to move forward despite being riddled with contradictions: I'm a Hero, why do I have the Monster Lord as a companion? The Goddess I follow tells me to hate monsters, but I don't...
And yet he moves forward. It reminds me of a quote I once read about humans and machines, in that what differentiates us is our ability to move forward even when our beliefs and thoughts are contradictory.

Furthermore, a good deal of the protagonist's goal is to unite humans and monsters or just generally being good, which is just up my alley. I like stories about this sort of thing, even when they have extras or things which are seemingly in opposition to 'being good'. You can read more about this messy logic here.

Occasionally it gets dark, reminding me of some of the experiments in Full Metal Alchemist, with the main difference being that things generally end well in this story, thankfully.

The gameplay is also good, and is utilised well. Being a fan of eroge I don't particularly dislike the theme they carry (the opponent's attacks are basically all centred around making the protagonist ejaculate and give in to them), but what I like are the... free-form, puzzle-like way in which they work. Flavour text serves to give us hints into what the monster's weakness is or when they're going to make their big attack or how to counter it, and you get flavour text by doing normal attacks; essentially, spend a bit gathering information until you figure out what kind of approach you need to take. Sometimes you need to rush them, other times you need prepare for a marathon and heal up, and occasionally you need to stop being an idiot and be still for a while.
I realise that sounds like everything else out there ever, but apparently I don't play games much, because I found it decently unique. Essentially, it's based around losing and figuring out what to do differently. And of course it's based around losing! Each loss nets you an H-Scene, and since they bothered to write some couple hundred of them over the course of the whole game, you might as well read some. Sometimes you don't even need to lose, if you interpret the vague hints well and metagame it (I just got this power, so obviously the next enemy I face can only be beaten with said power!).

 

 

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Reading Ef, I'm, basing on the youtube playthrough playlist, around 17parts from 32, from First Tale.

And while I really dislike both heroines, annoying, clingy, violent lifedestroyers, I like this tittle. Romance is really subtly written. Well, it's actually "written" and not like in most of the VNs "protag suddenly realizes he's in love". Of course, abrupt h scenes and unfunny humour dimnish the overall enjoyement, but it's still a nice read.

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On 6/25/2017 at 5:56 AM, Vorathiel said:

Reading Ef, I'm, basing on the youtube playthrough playlist, around 17parts from 32, from First Tale.

And while I really dislike both heroines, annoying, clingy, violent lifedestroyers, I like this tittle. Romance is really subtly written. Well, it's actually "written" and not like in most of the VNs "protag suddenly realizes he's in love". Of course, abrupt h scenes and unfunny humour dimnish the overall enjoyement, but it's still a nice read.

I was reading some of that too but I got real busy with other visual novels. I really love the anime and visual novel so far. I need to also finish reading Eden.

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