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Help is the word here!

I'm a total newb at VNs right now so I want you guys to recommend me something. I've got Steins Gate for my vita so I have a sci-fi title that I'm considering right now, but I want my first Visual Novel to be something special so this is just in case. Hmm if you could recommend me a romance title and mystery title I could also read that would be great, remember they have to be spectacular, the best of the best. So it's either romance, sci-fi, or mystery for my three starter pokemon.:wahaha: HA, HA, HA, HA

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Well, Steins;Gate is my favorite VN, so if you want "the best of the best" that's not a bad place to start. It has romance as well.

Mystery is a genre that's lacking in general in VNs. The Kara no Shoujo series is good, but not exactly spectacular. I really enjoyed the Umineko series a whole lot, but it can be a little rough around the edges from a presentation standpoint (low res, bad art, shitty engine). If you're willing to forgive those presentation flaws, it's a great mystery VN, and there are patches that improve the art (https://vndb.org/r36638). Danganronpa is a comedy/mystery/thriller that's pretty great, and has a solid PC port via Steam.

For romance, many people here, me included, love Grisaia no Kajitsu/The Fruit of Grisaia. It actually blends a few genres together and is a highly unusual kind of romance, but it's still romance. It is definitely among the best of the best. For something more pure romance, hmm, I tend not to rate those very highly so I may not be the best judge. Key's titles are super popular and my favorite is Little Busters, although it's ostensibly more about friendship than romance. One thing most branching romance VNs contain are lengthy common routes without much actual romance and lots of comedy. If you want something that sort of gets right to the point instead, there's ef, which is really good.

edit: I realize I just gave you a whole bunch of options instead of just saying "here's the best!" so I'll get reductive:

Pure, grounded romance: ef -a fairy tale of the two

Comedy/Romance/Hijinks/Over-the-top insane drama - Grisaia

Sci-Fi - Can't go wrong with Steins;Gate

Mystery - Just go with DanganRonpa, it's easy to get into and is still rather great.

 

If you just want the community consensus on what's good, just go with VNDB, our recommendations here rarely deviate from it. https://vndb.org/v/all?q=;fil=tagspoil-0;rfil=released-1.type-complete.lang-en;o=d;s=rating

In before Clephas comes and suggests a lot of Japanese-only titles you can't read.

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Well,  Steins;Gate was a great one. My first VN was Clannad..... that will remain as a special romance title for me but some people don't may find it a bit too cheezy. Little Busters was more about friendship but it was good too.

If you want mystery, Umineko is the queen. It is extremely long as it is divided into 8 parts. You will probably find it to be boring for the 1st part, but there is a plot twist at the end of it that makes everything 100x interesting. I literally stayed up 3 nights to complete it after I finished the 1st part. It has the best music and sound effect out of any VNs or anime imo. After all, it is an audio novel. And although people chew it out for bad art, there is a patch with updated background and sprites for the PS3 that also works with PC:17671-620x-umineko_ps3_003.jpeg.jpg

Try hard enough and you will find it.

Another close contender in the mystery genre is Cartagra. If you don't like gore, don't play it. But that one was really good too for me.

A good mix of drama and mystery would be G-Senjou no Maou. Decent good music too; they are arrangements of classical pieces.

I am not a fan of sci-fi and mecha (save for Steins;Gate. That is how good it was) so can't tell you much on that...

 

All in all, to rank them I would go with this:

1. Umineko

2. Clannad/Little Busters (same company, similar feel and style just different theme/message)

3. Steins;Gate

4. G-Senjou no Maou

5. Cartagra

 

There are plenty of VNs that you can't go wrong with but extremely few that will be special and memorable. There are English translations for all of them.

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I would say that Cartagra isn't innocent grey's best mystery title. The mystery aspects of it were really poorly done. Kara no Shoujo handled the mystery side of things better, and KnS2 did it MUCH better. If you liked Cartagra for the mystery, give those two a shot for sure.

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4 minutes ago, Decay said:

I would say that Cartagra isn't innocent grey's best mystery title. The mystery aspects of it were really poorly done. Kara no Shoujo handled the mystery side of things better, and KnS2 did it MUCH better. If you liked Cartagra for the mystery, give those two a shot for sure.

haha never played them since I was done with mystery for a while and I am busy. Duly noted.

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25 minutes ago, Gaijin said:

If you use 4chan, another VN that I'd recommend is Katawa Shoujo. It's made by users there.

That's not as bad a thing as one would originally assume  : P  There's no memes and they actually put effort into making it good.  It's not the best thing I've ever read, but it's definitely worth a read, and it's free to boot.

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Wow so many replies I don't know what to say, thanks for all this feedback.:sachi:

I've looked into some of these at VNDB to get a lil sneak peek. I can see that Umineko looks like a very long VN so it might be a stretch for me to start with that first, it looks like an interesting story, but i'll save that for another time. Hmm by popularity I think to try Steins;Gate, I already have it on my vita and looks like a good story. The runner ups look like G-Senjou no Maou and Little Busters. I want to wait for the Little Busters Perfect Edition that will come out so i'll look forward to G-Senjou no Maou as my next VN.

Happy to have everyone's input on my first VN, thank you, have a jam.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_x92uAgIBM&ebc=ANyPxKqHbCbxxeSql548c5pbRj8O6LCX_tgyqCxWz0fuNV_DrSMdhnF5o6A2FBBoClL3ZIqaq6QqwV59_sPhlwHQ2uug3R22pg

Steins;Gate here I come!:ryuusui:

 

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Since apparently you linked it to Pokemon in term of 3 starter, how about if I also took a role of Pokemon Professor and offer my starter here too, although with slightly difference though from the above recommendation (Maybe my choice slightly less correct)

Romance - Actually there is a lot in recent translated moege, but how about Konosora here which back at 2012 released internationally with big controversy (Like ripped all H-Scenes and Sex Jokes) from the company. Right now at Fuwanovel here there was a work to retranslate it and recover the H-Scenes (Although personally I just recommended you to search on Google 'Konosora English patch' and search torrent for Konosora original, since apparently restoration patch here had some problem in regard of CG mode (The CG was show improperly in CG Mode, but it's Moenovel fault though for cutting the H CG)).

Sci-fi - If some of the user recommended Steins Gate, how about I recommended I/O? Translated by Lemnisca back in 2014 and it contain many hardcore science fact. The man behind it was Takumi Nakazawa (Also had work with Uchikoshi in Infinity series, well-known sci-fi series)

Mystery - Quite hard actually, since some of VNDB also list them with Sci-fi, but I think for mystery I recommended YU-NO. The graphic maybe quite old, but still tolerable and it's very good back in 1995 (I think it's still good now). Actually also had Sci-fi element, but you more involved in here.

tldr - I recommended Konosora, I/O, and YU-NO for your next VN here. Hop you enjoy those three.

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As usual from me, G Senjou No Maou and the Kara No Shoujo series starting with Cartagra. Even if you're not a fan of Cartagra, Kara No Shoujo and the Second Episode are definitely better. Other recommendations would be Steins;Gate, Majikoi, Sharin No Kuni, Grisaia No Kajitsu because I have no idea about the other two yet, and Saya No Uta.

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Let's see here all these VNs seem good, so i'll be sure to check em out. Romance is my fav and I love a couple with good chemistry that goes through many drama and obstacles together(like Gosick and Toradora), and some of these seem to have those kind of stories. Already decided on Steins;Gate so that will be something to look forward to later.:wafuu:

Thanks for the help with recommendations, i'll be counting on you guys again in the future, laterz!

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7 hours ago, Zenophilious said:

That's not as bad a thing as one would originally assume  : P  There's no memes and they actually put effort into making it good.  It's not the best thing I've ever read, but it's definitely worth a read, and it's free to boot.

 

7 hours ago, TexasDice said:

Katawa Shoujo is one of the best VNs to read early, because later on you'll become too pretentious to appreciate it. 

 

These guys got it in a nutshell. It's an interesting twist on the typical high school setting for romance games, but the characters are well thought out and distinctly unique from one another. The music and art is also on par with "real" VNs.

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ef is pretty heavy if you're starting...

Get something lighter, like Littlewitch's "Quartett" or "Period" (it's long). Or if you want somethig memorable, Katawa Shoujo. Also more recent catch-all titles like Koi to Senkyo to Chocolate and Noble Works.

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On 3/15/2016 at 10:01 PM, Buddha Senpai said:

4. G-Senjou no Maou

5. Cartagra

 

On 3/16/2016 at 3:54 PM, Okarin said:

Katawa Shoujo. Also more recent catch-all titles like Koi to Senkyo to Chocolate and Noble Works.

 

I'd say take one from those, I was gonna recommend them but quoting is easier :miyako:

Also I'll add Maji de Watashi ni Koishinasai!, Koisuru Natsu no Last Resort, Hosizora no Memoria among some, if you need more just ask :sachi: 

Hope you enjoy whichever you end up picking, they're all great to start with

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Welcome! Do you have a DS? If so, you're doing yourself a huge disservice by not playing 9 Hours, 9 Persons 9 Doors. Amazing mystery/horror/thriller VN. Was my first, loved it.

Particular routes in Ever17 and YU-NO are amazingly beautiful romances, but both are mystery VNs first and foremost. (E17 is also a thriller).

Seeing as you have a Vita, Danganronpa is an amazing place to begin with mystery VNs as well. It's one of my favorite games.

 

However, Umineko trumps all when it comes to mystery. I don't like it half as much as most other people who played it, but it's still a very special VN. There's absolutely nothing quite like it out there.

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