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YOU and ME and HER (aka Totono aka Kimi to Kanojo to Kanojo no Koi)


Totono Poll  

22 members have voted

  1. 1. Aoi or Miyuki?

    • Aoi
      13
    • Miyuki
      9


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13 minutes ago, Freestyle80 said:

Just curious before I dive in, how long does this exactly take to finish? The walkthrough published is bloody huge ( http://www.otakulair.com/english-visual-novel-walkthroughs/you-and-me-and-her-a-love-story-walkthrough-nitroplus-jast-usa/ ) so is it like a 30 hour game?

The game isn't very long. Probably took me about 15 hours, and I'm a pretty slow reader.

Though in this particular case it's better not to use a walkthrough. There is a really good reason for that, and I'm not going to spoil it.

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So I just finished Totono and since buying it I can't get the Totoro theme out of my head. As for the game itself, for me i would rate it towards the better end of "meh". There is an amazing attention to detail and there are quite a few clever moments in it, but when it comes to the main narrative and the points it's trying to make it feels rather inconsistent to me.

I don't know if I agree with the general sentiment that you need to go into the experience completely blind as the very first scene (not to mention the screenshots on the JAST store page) sets up that Totono is going to be weird or more precisely

Spoiler

meta.

 

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I have added a simple poll.


Even though I got spoiled on certain aspects of the story before hand (but It was my fault in that case), I still enjoyed the story a lot. But I think I would have enjoyed the story more If gone in completely blind, so If you can avoid spoilers I would recommend to do so. It is definitely something quite different when compared to the usual romance driven VNs, but that is what makes it special. It's really hard to talk about this titles without spoilers. But I can only recommend the VN to people that have some experience with VNs. I don't think it would work as your first VN. If that is the case I would recommend giving the title a chance. And in regard to the "tag discussion" in this thread, I personally don't enjoy that, but still like this VN.


Overall I am continued to be impressed by Nitroplus titles.

 

I guess now it's time to read DDLC?

Edited by Formlose Gestalt
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I'm soo surprised Miyuki is comfortably leading the poll considering picking Aoi is basically an admission that

Spoiler

you didn't take anything away from the game in terms of the message the game tries really hard to beat into you. "Being an asshole to get all the CGs makes you a bad person, so be more responsible" the game screams at me as it wants me to choose between the girl with close to no personality to speak of who gets her power from you being an asshole getting all the CGs and the one who got fucked over by me being an asshole to get all the CGs.

I wonder if the finale of Totono is some kind of super eloborate additional meta-layer that I just don't get, constantly talking about how important it is to think about the consequences of your actions even within fiction, just to then degrade your decisions to mere narration (thus taking away all your means to influence the action) and in the end giving you a choice where there is only one correct answer based on the moral of the game, yet you get a (kind of) happy ending no matter which girl you pick.

 

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1 hour ago, alpacaman said:

I'm soo surprised Miyuki is comfortably leading the poll considering picking Aoi is basically an admission that

  Hide contents

you didn't take anything away from the game in terms of the message the game tries really hard to beat into you. "Being an asshole to get all the CGs makes you a bad person, so be more responsible" the game screams at me as it wants me to choose between the girl with close to no personality to speak of who gets her power from you being an asshole getting all the CGs and the one who got fucked over by me being an asshole to get all the CGs.

I wonder if the finale of Totono is some kind of super eloborate additional meta-layer that I just don't get, constantly talking about how important it is to think about the consequences of your actions even within fiction, just to then degrade your decisions to mere narration (thus taking away all your means to influence the action) and in the end giving you a choice where there is only one correct answer based on the moral of the game, yet you get a (kind of) happy ending no matter which girl you pick.

 

Spoiler

I mean, there are definitely some people who may prefer Aoi for various reasons. Some people may prefer her looks, some may like her personality... though the game kind of shows that she doesn't even have a real personality, but, well... And, actually, considering that the game didn't even give us the chance to choose Aoi in the very beginning, as her route was locked before Miyuki's, I think, as far as I understand the message of the game, it does make sense to give the players a chance to choose her, considering that a lot of them would only complete Miyuki's route not because they actually like her as a character, but only because they want to, you know, complete the game for the sake of completing the game, and that's basically what the game is trying to discourage us from doing.

Actually, is Aoi's ending even that happy? I decided not to check it out for obvious reasons, but I've seen some spoilers that said that she still disappears or something.

 

37 minutes ago, [Hun]Lepto said:
  Reveal hidden contents

The only thing I surely didn't really like is how the game is literally screaming at you for why you picked Aoi in the second route when you DON'T even have the choice to pick her in the first one. How can I be the one faulty when not even given the freedom of choice?

 

Spoiler

Well, it doesn't really try to blame us for picking Aoi, but for picking Aoi after we already got Miyuki's ending. Still, I do kind of wish if we got a chance to complete Aoi's route first (and probably get to the same result somehow). Come to think of it, DDLC

Spoiler

probably did this a bit more consistently.

 

 

Edited by Dreamysyu
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12 minutes ago, Dreamysyu said:
Spoiler

I've seen some spoilers that said that she still disappears or something.

 

I haven't seen it either, but yeah, I've also heard that's the case. She supposedly says something about

Spoiler

meeting again in any future VNs you read, where she'll appear as other heroines.

 

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I'm reading it and I feel terrible not being able to read your spoilers, but I shall persevere.

The art is gourgeous, but I think the soundtrack is where thisi game really stands out. I stop reading for a minute or two every time a different track starts playing.

The only thing I'm diisliking is how the MC constantly says he is worthless, a nobody, etc etc. He does that every few minutes, and it seems pointless. He has friends, a house, a cat... seems fine to me.

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10 hours ago, Dreamysyu said:
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I mean, there are definitely some people who may prefer Aoi for various reasons. Some people may prefer her looks, some may like her personality... though the game kind of shows that she doesn't even have a real personality, but, well... And, actually, considering that the game didn't even give us the chance to choose Aoi in the very beginning, as her route was locked before Miyuki's, I think, as far as I understand the message of the game, it does make sense to give the players a chance to choose her, considering that a lot of them would only complete Miyuki's route not because they actually like her as a character, but only because they want to, you know, complete the game for the sake of completing the game, and that's basically what the game is trying to discourage us from doing.

Actually, is Aoi's ending even that happy? I decided not to check it out for obvious reasons, but I've seen some spoilers that said that she still disappears or something.

 

  Hide contents

Well, it doesn't really try to blame us for picking Aoi, but for picking Aoi after we already got Miyuki's ending. Still, I do kind of wish if we got a chance to complete Aoi's route first (and probably get to the same result somehow). Come to think of it, DDLC

  Hide contents

probably did this a bit more consistently.

 

 

Spoiler

Yes, atleast in DDLC, Monika was also aware that she had no route to begin with and that's why she rebelled against the system. Here, Miyuki doesn't even mention that we had no choice to begin with.

 

Edited by [Hun]Lepto
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5 hours ago, Silvz said:

The only thing I'm diisliking is how the MC constantly says he is worthless, a nobody, etc etc.

I think that's pretty much a side effect from a lack of confidence combined with him putting Miyuki on a pedestal. Even if he'd start actively improving himself, he'd probably still feel like he can't reach her level, and that in turn makes him feel like he's more useless than he actually is.

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One thing I can't get over is during one of the H-scenes, she says something along the lines of "You can't see it can you? Of course, there's a mosaic in the way.", while the translation states, "You're lucky, you know. In the Japanese version, there's a mosaic in the way". And this game, is of course, un-mosaiced. This made me laugh so hard. Am I weird?

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On 29.5.2020 at 11:28 PM, Dreamysyu said:
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I mean, there are definitely some people who may prefer Aoi for various reasons. Some people may prefer her looks, some may like her personality... though the game kind of shows that she doesn't even have a real personality, but, well... And, actually, considering that the game didn't even give us the chance to choose Aoi in the very beginning, as her route was locked before Miyuki's, I think, as far as I understand the message of the game, it does make sense to give the players a chance to choose her, considering that a lot of them would only complete Miyuki's route not because they actually like her as a character, but only because they want to, you know, complete the game for the sake of completing the game, and that's basically what the game is trying to discourage us from doing.

Actually, is Aoi's ending even that happy? I decided not to check it out for obvious reasons, but I've seen some spoilers that said that she still disappears or something.

 

Spoiler

That is kind of a weak message though, isn't it? "Don't play all the routes / go for 100% completion because if heroines were self-aware and managed to keep memories between routes they would feel betrayed." Well they aren't, the content in question would exist regardless of whether I read it or not, and there are very few hints at why the behaviour condemned by the game would be harmful in normal eroge. I know there is some more or less subtle criticism in the game aimed at the general dehumanising nature of these games regarding the treatment of their heroines, but it gets pretty muddled by all the finger-pointing at the reader.

This even gets reflected in the way Totono builds up to its climax in that it gives YOU, the reader, a pretty standard eroge character arc. By learning all about Mizuki after being "trapped" by her, you have to show you learned your lesson by beating the quiz. You get rewarded with the rather typical pre-(story-)climax love confession and h-scene and then that gives you the power to overcome the final hurdle by escaping her and making your big decision (all while being constantly reminded what lesson you learned). Even in its deconstruction (or whatever you want to call it) of eroge, Totono unquestioningly reproduces a lot of the tropes of the genre and then makes a half-baked moralistic point rather than asking what makes players pick the kind of choices the game considers undesirable. The game just kind of assumes that eroge readers are sociopaths for being completionist.

I also think this combination is one of the main reasons why Totono is generally liked by the VN-community while DDLC gets quite a lot of hate. In Totono the player gets the easy way out. The game rarely criticises eroge as a genre in a substantial way, instead aiming at the reader. Yet the assumptions the game makes about its audience border on caricature to a degree that you can either assume its morals don't apply for you, or you get redeemed by the VN's climax. This results in the audience neither having to actually reflect on their gaming behavior nor having to adjust their evaluation of the genre itself. DDLC doesn't give you any of these ways out. It makes a point out of how it doesn't matter what choices you pick, while at the same time condemning the way dating-sims objectify their heroines (they are literally game files and their personality traits are just stats Monika can manipulate). It basically tells you that you are complicit just by playing these kinds of games.

 

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13 hours ago, LAsuka said:

One thing I can't get over is during one of the H-scenes, she says something along the lines of "You can't see it can you? Of course, there's a mosaic in the way.", while the translation states, "You're lucky, you know. In the Japanese version, there's a mosaic in the way". And this game, is of course, un-mosaiced. This made me laugh so hard. Am I weird?

lmao this is why I love Verdelish 

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2 hours ago, alpacaman said:
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That is kind of a weak message though, isn't it? "Don't play all the routes / go for 100% completion because if heroines were self-aware and managed to keep memories between routes they would feel betrayed." Well they aren't, the content in question would exist regardless of whether I read it or not, and there are very few hints at why the behaviour condemned by the game would be harmful in normal eroge. I know there is some more or less subtle criticism in the game aimed at the general dehumanising nature of these games regarding the treatment of their heroines, but it gets pretty muddled by all the finger-pointing at the reader.

This even gets reflected in the way Totono builds up to its climax in that it gives YOU, the reader, a pretty standard eroge character arc. By learning all about Mizuki after being "trapped" by her, you have to show you learned your lesson by beating the quiz. You get rewarded with the rather typical pre-(story-)climax love confession and h-scene and then that gives you the power to overcome the final hurdle by escaping her and making your big decision (all while being constantly reminded what lesson you learned). Even in its deconstruction (or whatever you want to call it) of eroge, Totono unquestioningly reproduces a lot of the tropes of the genre and then makes a half-baked moralistic point rather than asking what makes players pick the kind of choices the game considers undesirable. The game just kind of assumes that eroge readers are sociopaths for being completionist.

I also think this combination is one of the main reasons why Totono is generally liked by the VN-community while DDLC gets quite a lot of hate. In Totono the player gets the easy way out. The game rarely criticises eroge as a genre in a substantial way, instead aiming at the reader. Yet the assumptions the game makes about its audience border on caricature to a degree that you can either assume its morals don't apply for you, or you get redeemed by the VN's climax. This results in the audience neither having to actually reflect on their gaming behavior nor having to adjust their evaluation of the genre itself. DDLC doesn't give you any of these ways out. It makes a point out of how it doesn't matter what choices you pick, while at the same time condemning the way dating-sims objectify their heroines (they are literally game files and their personality traits are just stats Monika can manipulate). It basically tells you that you are complicit just by playing these kinds of games.

 

That is an interesting point.

Spoilers for Totono and DDLC:

Spoiler

After thinking about Totonos ending, I don't think I take much of a message out of it. But I still liked it, it made me emotional attached to Miyukis character. I felt sorry for what happened to her, but to be honest not guilty cause there was nothing the player could have done saving her from this, except for dropping the game after the first ending. But there are people that get really invested into the heroines of VN and I could see the story being a real gut punch for them. Seeing their choices cause sorrow for a character. (Even if they had no choice.) In the end respected the story enough to not read the alternative ending. Furthermore I enjoyed the aspect of the fourth wall breaking. I found that interesting. In Totono as well as in DDLC.


As said above I read DDLC after Totono and I found your interpretation interesting, and I can see how you can come to that interpretation but to be honest, if that was the point they are trying to make (Dating Sims [And VNs too?] objectify their characters), they did a poor job with it, because honestly I would have never thought about that. DDLC comes across as wanting to show some gore moments for cheap thrills. Especially after Monika alters the game. Random Eyes exploding and stuff like that. For me that undermined what ever message they wanted to send. I was more pissed of how they touched on serious problems like depression and completely devalued them by the aforementioned and the fact that you can't trust the characters since they are manipulated, so why take them serious. Also I never noticed the theme that your choices don' have any impact. I thought about that after the Daresora chapter but not here. Maybe I need to think about DDLC again. In any case thanks for you interpretations it was interesting to read.

 

Edited by Formlose Gestalt
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15 hours ago, Formlose Gestalt said:

That is an interesting point.

Spoilers for Totono and DDLC:

  Reveal hidden contents

After thinking about Totonos ending, I don't think I take much of a message out of it. But I still liked it, it made me emotional attached to Miyukis character. I felt sorry for what happened to her, but to be honest not guilty cause there was nothing the player could have done saving her from this, except for dropping the game after the first ending. But there are people that get really invested into the heroines of VN and I could see the story being a real gut punch for them. Seeing their choices cause sorrow for a character. (Even if they had no choice.) In the end respected the story enough to not read the alternative ending. Furthermore I enjoyed the aspect of the fourth wall breaking. I found that interesting. In Totono as well as in DDLC.


As said above I read DDLC after Totono and I found your interpretation interesting, and I can see how you can come to that interpretation but to be honest, if that was the point they are trying to make (Dating Sims [And VNs too?] objectify their characters), they did a poor job with it, because honestly I would have never thought about that. DDLC comes across as wanting to show some gore moments for cheap thrills. Especially after Monika alters the game. Random Eyes exploding and stuff like that. For me that undermined what ever message they wanted to send. I was more pissed of how they touched on serious problems like depression and completely devalued them by the aforementioned and the fact that you can't trust the characters since they are manipulated, so why take them serious. Also I never noticed the theme that your choices don' have any impact. I thought about that after the Daresora chapter but not here. Maybe I need to think about DDLC again. In any case thanks for you interpretations it was interesting to read.

 

It's rare that a story straight up tells you what it's about on a thematical level, but especially sci-fi and horror tend to use their source of conflict (technology/monster) at least to some degree as metaphor. Horror only works if it invokes some deeper fear or anxiety in the audience beyond the monster simply looking menacing. For example, Godzilla isn't just some huge dinosaur, in the original movie he is also a stand-in for the potential effects of the aftermath of the nuclear bombings in post-Hiroshima Japan. As its 5000 sequels show, without this context, he is just some man in a dinosaur-suit walking through Tinytown, which isn't exactly scary.

As for DDLC (no actual spoilers for Totono btw),

Spoiler

its horror stems from the fear of losing control of a seemingly safe environment (like most denpa VNs). At first it gives you the illusion of being in charge of the game by giving you just the experience you expect from playing something called "Doki Doki Literature Club" and letting you follow the heroine of your choice. Then it gradually takes away your means to influence events until it reveals you were never in control to begin with. Even when you manage to beat the bad guy, the final scene shows you are still ultimately powerless. It starts out with the usual power dynamic in cheap dating sims (you trying to court some tropey cute girls without their own agendas just waiting to be won like trophies) and then inverts it to put you in the position the heroines normally find themselves in, being helpless prey. I'm not trying to say that the objectifying stuff is THE message of DDLC. But it's hard to deny the game is an indictment of the power dynamics at play in dating sims/VNs (at least as perceived by its author), and the objectification of heroines is an integral part of that.

As for the mental illness part, I get where you're coming from. It doesn't bother me that much, as the game is quite explicit in telling you it's not going for a realistic portrayal. It plays into the whole control-theme as it shows that mental illness is not something that you can actually cure just by picking the respective heroine's route. You can also see it as a critisism through overexaggeration of the way VNs exploit mental illness to create feels. It's still hard to expose exploitation without reproducing it and I agree DDLC doesn't really nail that part.

Anyways, it's not that I think DDLC is a perfect story. Aside from the mental illness stuff there's also the horror being to reliant on jump scares and weird eye movement, to name one more thing. What I'm trying to do is find an explanation why 1) Totono is way less controversial than DDLC in VN community, even though on the surface they share quite a few similarities, and 2) why I personally actually kind of prefer DDLC, despite Totono having way higher production values and generally operating on a much biggger scale. What it comes down to for me is DDLC handling its themes more coherently and being less edginess over substance than Totono.

 

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Guys, can you help me?
 

Spoiler

 

I got to the part where Myiuki keeps me in the hotel bedroom after talking to "me". Aoi is gone, and the text boxes are awful. But even though I pick different choices, the game has started to repeat scenes to the point I don't seem to move forward anymore. What do I need to do to continue the game?

Btw, Aoi talks to me when I end the game. Should I end it more often?

 

 

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5 hours ago, Silvz said:

Guys, can you help me?
 

  Hide contents

 

I got to the part where Myiuki keeps me in the hotel bedroom after talking to "me". Aoi is gone, and the text boxes are awful. But even though I pick different choices, the game has started to repeat scenes to the point I don't seem to move forward anymore. What do I need to do to continue the game?

Btw, Aoi talks to me when I end the game. Should I end it more often?

 

 

Just keep repeating and try choosing different options. At some point a certain character will explain you what to do.

 

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6 hours ago, Silvz said:

Guys, can you help me?
 

  Hide contents

 

I got to the part where Myiuki keeps me in the hotel bedroom after talking to "me". Aoi is gone, and the text boxes are awful. But even though I pick different choices, the game has started to repeat scenes to the point I don't seem to move forward anymore. What do I need to do to continue the game?

Btw, Aoi talks to me when I end the game. Should I end it more often?

 

 

Spoiler

You can either go forward and get random scenes or you can use the load menu and select the different scenes (that would be chosen at random if you just progress) while doing that you should find new things and options to chose.

 

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7 hours ago, Formlose Gestalt said:
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You can either go forward and get random scenes or you can use the load menu and select the different scenes (that would be chosen at random if you just progress) while doing that you should find new things and options to chose.

 

Spoiler

Actually, not all important scenes are available through the menu. So, at first it's better to just go forward.

 

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