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Namtab
Feb 22, 2010



I've been musing on this a while and I feel that we as a subforum are now cool and mature enough to discuss the best genre of games (visual novels) again without getting posters banned and mods called out in QCS. I could be wrong but I want a place to post umineko speculation as I do my toxx so I'M MAKING THE THREAD ANYWAY (mod approved).

What's a VN, Namtab?

Well, according to a quick wikipedia search I just did:

quote:

A visual novel (ビジュアルノベル, bijuaru noberu), sometimes abbreviated as VN, is an interactive game genre, which originated in Japan,[1][2] featuring text-based story with narrative style of literature and interactivity aided by static or sprite-based visuals, most often using anime-style art or occasionally live-action stills (and sometimes video footage).[3] As the name might suggest, they resemble mixed-media novels.

In Japanese terminology, a distinction is often made between visual novels (abbreviated NVL, derived from "novel"), which consist predominantly of narration and have very few interactive elements, and adventure games (abbreviated AVG, or ADV derived from "adventure"), a form of adventure game which may incorporate problem-solving and other types of gameplay. This distinction is normally lost outside Japan, where both NVLs and ADVs are commonly referred to as "visual novels" by international fans. Visual novels and ADVs are especially prevalent in Japan, where they made up nearly 70% of the PC game titles released in 2006.[4]

Visual novels are often produced for video game consoles, and the more popular games have occasionally been ported to such systems. The more famous visual novels are also often adapted into the light novel, manga or anime formats. The market for visual novels outside of East Asia is small, though a number of anime based on visual novels are popular among anime fans in the Western world.

Basically it's a video game of a book, usually (but not always) that book will have choose your own adventure elements to it. Sometimes people will call japanese made word-heavy puzzle games like phoenix wright, the nonary games and ghost trick visual novels. I don't personally but this is a welcoming thread

Thread Rules

1.) Normal forum and subforum rules apply, but infractions may be more severely moderated (as in I have specifially asked the mods to crush rulebreakers).
2.) Significant spoilers in tags - As we can't assume that everyone has read the visual novel you are talking about please keep spoilers in tags. However please use common sense around this because there's nothing worse than threads that look like the CIA got to it. Preferably put what the spoiler is about in brackets near the spoiler. Spoilers are for spoilers only, not speculation (but don't be the guy who deliberately posts spoilers as speculation).
3.) On Henty Games - DON'T BE A CREEP is the major rule here and given that being a creep is what got the last one of these shut down I hope we can avoid that again. Posting about games with some pornographic content is OK (e.g. Fate Stay/Night). Think carefully before posting about anything that's just straight up a game to wank to. All content allowed in the thread is at the discretion of the mods.
4.) Don't post the sex scenes, don't link to the sex scenes, don't write overly descriptive reviews of the sex scenes, don't rate the sex scenes
5.) Again, DON'T BE A CREEP!
6.) Mods may edit this rules list at their discretion

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Namtab
Feb 22, 2010



So my umineko speculation for episode 1, which is entirely based on reading up to halfway through, is that the inevitable murders are someone trying to word for word copy the epitah

Myriad Truths
Oct 13, 2012


Oh a VN thread. I had been following the one in Games but this is nice too.

I'm currently partway through The House in Fata Morgana: A Requiem for Innocence, but I wasn't enjoying the main story that much. It's decent, nothing groundbreaking. I'm more hopeful for the side stories though.

Dr Pepper
Feb 4, 2012

Don't like it? well...



Namtab posted:

So my umineko speculation for episode 1, which is entirely based on reading up to halfway through, is that the inevitable murders are someone trying to word for word copy the epitah

Please post all your Umineko speculation in this thread it's always a magical thing.

HerpicleOmnicron5
May 31, 2013

How did this smug dummkopf ever make general?


yeah namtab there's a thread in games for this, it just does all-ages ones

Stairmaster
Jun 8, 2012



what about vn's not made by AGE?

The Colonel
Jun 8, 2013

I commute by bike!


i predicted one thing about higurashi and as of episode 5 have predicted no things about umineko

littleorv
Jan 29, 2011


I like Fata Morgana op

Stairmaster
Jun 8, 2012



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1XYrDqDgnA0

Namtab
Feb 22, 2010



HerpicleOmnicron5 posted:

yeah namtab there's a thread in games for this, it just does all-ages ones

Theres a thread i n tviv for toonami, the forum can sustain multiple threads

Stairmaster
Jun 8, 2012



Meiya is best girl

Ytlaya
Nov 13, 2005

I TRUST JOE BIDEN AND THE DEMS


^^^ Meiya is lame, though to be fair so are all the other Muv-Luv girls. Muv-Luv is very entertaining and pretty good, but none of its love interests are particularly interesting as characters (I'll grant you that Meiya is probably the most interesting of them, though that isn't saying much). IIRC the other taller girl was pretty good. Forget her name, but the one with a weird sense of humor who didn't have glasses or pink hair or blue hair.

One VN that is worth looking at and isn't as well known as a bunch of the stuff usually mentioned in threads like this is Key's "Rewrite." Rewrite is definitely very flawed in various ways, but I enjoyed reading it and thought the premise was fun (though the conclusion was a bit strange and I wasn't a big fan of what ended up being the "core romance"). For whatever reason it managed to hold my attention more than most VNs do.

Namtab posted:

So my umineko speculation for episode 1, which is entirely based on reading up to halfway through, is that the inevitable murders are someone trying to word for word copy the epitah

Umineko is unquestionably the best VN and probably the best piece of media in the broad domain of "nerd media" (so stuff like anime, games, science fiction, etc). It's probably the only thing I can think of where "you need to fully understand it to appreciate it and most people who don't like it did not fully understand it" is actually true and not just pretentious (or a sign of bad writing). This isn't so much because it contains deep/complex ideas, but more just because of the way it communicates things.

One thing worth mentioning - unless you speak/read Japanese, do not try to solve the epitaph. It isn't possible without knowing Japanese and also isn't really that necessary or helpful towards solving any of the series' core mysteries. There are a lot of intentional red herrings where the series misleads you by causing you to think about stuff that isn't that important (or over-complicate things that are actually as obvious as they appear), but this one is pretty safe to mention since there's not really any benefit to someone fruitlessly smashing their brain against it.

Ytlaya fucked around with this message at 05:07 on Jan 27, 2020

Exia
Feb 12, 2014


Stairmaster posted:

Meiya is best girl

Hello person with great taste. Meiya became my favorite girl almost immediately when I first played, and still remains #1 for me. Maybe it was the hairstyle being based on the GP02 from Gundam?

Hungry
Jul 14, 2006



Ytlaya posted:

One VN that is worth looking at and isn't as well known as a bunch of the stuff usually mentioned in threads like this is Key's "Rewrite." Rewrite is definitely very flawed in various ways, but I enjoyed reading it and thought the premise was fun (though the conclusion was a bit strange and I wasn't a big fan of what ended up being the "core romance"). For whatever reason it managed to hold my attention more than most VNs do.

Rewrite is one of the few pieces of media to have ever made me physically angry because it clearly lacked a central editor and slam-dunked its own appeal/tone/characterisation through the floorboards in an intentional attempt to destroy itself.

Irony Be My Shield
Jul 29, 2012

PRETTY SURE THAT ONE'S SARCASM, BOSS



Hungry posted:

it clearly lacked a central editor
hello, welcome to the Visual Novel Thread

Myriad Truths
Oct 13, 2012


I'm a big fan of Rewrite myself. It does have flaws though. I feel like it should have just been written by Romeo Tanaka, because the character routes not written by him are the biggest problem area.

Hungry
Jul 14, 2006



Yeah that's the problem. The good bits of it were really good, I enjoyed reading it despite the usual VN prose jank, which made the disappointing aspects all the more so when they hit.

RevolverDivider
Nov 12, 2016



Rewrite is really close to being good and the Akane route is amazing but Moon and Terra utterly shits itself so completely at the end and aggressively dumps all the things I liked.

klapman
Aug 27, 2012

this char is good


I remember laughing hysterically at the YOSHINOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO joke which was enough for me to decide Rewrite was good. I'm never gonna re-read it though, it's insanely bloated and if I wanna remember it the anime is decent enough as a recap.

IShallRiseAgain
Sep 12, 2008

Well ain't that precious?

Somebody I know was talking about how good Raging Loop was so I bought it. I didn't realize it was literally the werewolf forum game turned into a VN. It actually wasn't that bad until it got to the ending though. It turns into an incoherent, contradictory mess at that point, and expects you to play a bunch of extra chapters to explain the story.

Silver2195
Apr 4, 2012


Rewrite is bloated and uneven, and the multiple writers led to some weird tonal/thematic inconsistencies.
Tanaka’s routes were mostly good (although Terra is more an outline than a proper story, and also recontextualizes the Kotori route in a really uncomfortable way), and Ryukishi07’s route was good despite the bullshit unreliable narrator twist, but Tonokawa’s routes were crap. It’s funny how Key’s “rewrite” of Fate/Stay Night contains two separate better versions of Heaven’s Feel, but also a very stupid version of Unlimited Blade Works.

Irony Be My Shield
Jul 29, 2012

PRETTY SURE THAT ONE'S SARCASM, BOSS



IShallRiseAgain posted:

Somebody I know was talking about how good Raging Loop was so I bought it. I didn't realize it was literally the werewolf forum game turned into a VN. It actually wasn't that bad until it got to the ending though. It turns into an incoherent, contradictory mess at that point, and expects you to play a bunch of extra chapters to explain the story.
You also get a sortof newgame+ mode that reveals everything you didn't get to see the first time around, have fun!

Ytlaya
Nov 13, 2005

I TRUST JOE BIDEN AND THE DEMS


Hungry posted:

Rewrite is one of the few pieces of media to have ever made me physically angry because it clearly lacked a central editor and slam-dunked its own appeal/tone/characterisation through the floorboards in an intentional attempt to destroy itself.

I actually kinda liked the wild variation in each route.

Speaking of Rewrite, I have a question about its plot - Is it supposed to be the case that each route happened during one of the evolution cycles that kept getting re-done? That whole plot point, if I'm remembering it correctly, was strange because I'm pretty sure that the Earth literally isn't old enough to have multiple cycles of "humans evolving from scratch" (even if you assume things play out roughly the same each time for whatever reason).

I generally liked the "lore" of that game otherwise. Most of the fantasy elements were kinda neat.

klapman
Aug 27, 2012

this char is good


I'm enjoying Raging Loop a lot so far, it's moving at a strong pace and I like sitting back with a controller. There's also a total of three jacked dudes which is great. Well, the protag has some muscles too, so I guess 3.5. I also appreciate that there aren't that many characters, at least at the start - makes the Harvest Moon-esque character conveyor belt go a little faster.

Ytlaya posted:

happened during one of the evolution cycles that kept getting re-done? That whole plot point, if I'm remembering it correctly, was strange because I'm pretty sure that the Earth literally isn't old enough to have multiple cycles of "humans evolving from scratch" (even if you assume things play out roughly the same each time for whatever reason).

That's what I understood, yeah. There's probably some explanation in the exposition somewhere, but around midway through the Terra route I remember pretty much checking out. It was a bold move to completely change the entire story and take all the heroines out, but it didn't work for me at all. Also, the way the text changed was annoying and kind of exhausting to read for a long time cause it dulled every color. That might have been the point, but imo there's a limit to trying to create that sort of synergy with the character and instead of making me feel ground down and depressed it made me bored and frustrated.

Super Jay Mann
Nov 6, 2008



Rewrite is my favorite Key VN, though I should point out that I'm not a fan of Key's usual work anyway so I found the rather stark tonal and structure departures in Rewrite to be welcome more than anything else.

Terra I think is more than the sum of its parts despite its rather incomplete nature just because the twist of Kagari picking all of your "choices" in a desperate attempt to finally find the one actual good ending is a good one and works a lot better as you're playing the game as opposed to just reading about it, but I understand that it doesn't work as well as it needed to for some people.

Ytlaya posted:

Speaking of Rewrite, I have a question about its plot - Is it supposed to be the case that each route happened during one of the evolution cycles that kept getting re-done? That whole plot point, if I'm remembering it correctly, was strange because I'm pretty sure that the Earth literally isn't old enough to have multiple cycles of "humans evolving from scratch" (even if you assume things play out roughly the same each time for whatever reason).

I'm pretty sure the different routes are just the result of Moon Kagari and Kotarou observing the timeline from the outside during the Moon route. Which is supposed to play into Terra by implying that Kagari was the one making all the "choices" in all the other routes all along.

I think the whole idea behind the evolution cycles is just that the world eventually reaches a point where it can't properly refresh itself anymore and just degrades into the barren wasteland we see in Lucia's route
though my memory is a bit fuzzy on that last bit.

Super Jay Mann fucked around with this message at 06:35 on Jan 28, 2020

Stairmaster
Jun 8, 2012



IMO it sounds like you should just read fate/stay night.

Sakurazuka
Jan 24, 2004

NANI?



Play Raging Loop and Shibuya Scramble

WeedlordGoku69
Feb 11, 2015

A DAILY DOSE
OF OLD SHOOTERS


PLAY NOW MY LORD



Stairmaster posted:

IMO it sounds like you should just read fate/stay night.

Ytlaya
Nov 13, 2005

I TRUST JOE BIDEN AND THE DEMS


Super Jay Mann posted:

Rewrite is my favorite Key VN, though I should point out that I'm not a fan of Key's usual work anyway so I found the rather stark tonal and structure departures in Rewrite to be welcome more than anything else.

Terra I think is more than the sum of its parts despite its rather incomplete nature just because the twist of Kagari picking all of your "choices" in a desperate attempt to finally find the one actual good ending is a good one and works a lot better as you're playing the game as opposed to just reading about it, but I understand that it doesn't work as well as it needed to for some people.

This is exactly how I feel - I don't like most of Key's other stuff (though I haven't played Little Busters, which is apparently high on the comedy and the common route of Rewrite was pretty funny), but I liked Rewrite a lot and hope they do more stuff like that in the future.

Endorph
Jul 22, 2009

I may not be as cute as the other girls, but I'm the best at arm wrestling!


little busters is definitely my favorite of theirs. the cast is built around the protagonist rather than the protagonist just meeting a series of Sad Girls - heck, a lot of the narrative weight is put on the male best friend character - and its really funny.

GyroNinja
Nov 7, 2012


I'd probably call myself a KEY fan. Little Busters is one of my favorite VNs, and I liked Clannad quite a bit. Heck, I even mostly enjoyed Kanon, even though it's definitely dated as hell, and the lack of a "true ending" a la After Story or Refrain definitely holds it back in my opinion. I've been meaning to play Rewrite but at this point I feel I might as well just wait around for the official release.

Also, Jun Maeda is legitimately one of my favorite composers in the anime/VN industry. Little Busters in particular has a phenomenal soundtrack.

klapman
Aug 27, 2012

this char is good





e: Yomi route complete.

There's a lot to like about the game, I think. It misled me quite a bit, and I was certain that Takumi and Kiyonosuke were the wolves. Main thoughts so far are the hope that, despite the fact that it successfully tricked me, that that was the most standard route in the game. If things only escalate a little from there, I think I'll be a little disappointed. Other than that, it would have been nice if the lack of food was played up more. It would have been great if everyone started looking a little more sunken and malnourished, though the fact that they're all Yomibito might explain why they could all go without food for so long. It felt more like everyone chose not to eat rather than it being a survival situation, which I don't think is a mistake on the part of the writers. It's interesting and I don't really know where the game is headed.

I'm fairly optimistic. It hasn't lit my world on fire or really gotten my gears turning just yet, but it's set up an interesting mystery.

klapman fucked around with this message at 08:38 on Jan 29, 2020

Irony Be My Shield
Jul 29, 2012

PRETTY SURE THAT ONE'S SARCASM, BOSS



I thought everyone in Yomi was still eating at the dining hall except for Haruaki?

klapman
Aug 27, 2012

this char is good


Nope, after Yoshitsugu's death Kaori stops making food until she tries to poison everyone. I get the sense that she's the only one allowed to make food, so after her death nobody else steps up either. Chiemi mentions she's extremely hungry on the second to last night, but that she's stockpiling her own food just in case.

Also, the second route is doing exactly what I wanted, and giving the villagers a time to show their lighter sides. It's been very funny and Tae in particular is a much more fun character already. The impact of her showing up at like 3x size and screaming was enough to immediately make me like her. Fusaishi is also getting noticeably more insane which is fun. His whole interaction with Yoshitsugu about daring him to cut his finger off ruled lol

Endorph
Jul 22, 2009

I may not be as cute as the other girls, but I'm the best at arm wrestling!


GyroNinja posted:

I'd probably call myself a KEY fan. Little Busters is one of my favorite VNs, and I liked Clannad quite a bit. Heck, I even mostly enjoyed Kanon, even though it's definitely dated as hell, and the lack of a "true ending" a la After Story or Refrain definitely holds it back in my opinion. I've been meaning to play Rewrite but at this point I feel I might as well just wait around for the official release.

Also, Jun Maeda is legitimately one of my favorite composers in the anime/VN industry. Little Busters in particular has a phenomenal soundtrack.
I'm a fan of Eternal Fighter Zero, so i guess I'm a KEY fan by default.

esselfortium
Jul 19, 2006

Cumulonimbus Antagonistic Posting

Rewrite was my first VN. I'm surprised to see so much discussion about it in this thread, cool! I picked it up on a whim after having heard a lot of hype leading up to the anime adaptation's premiere, realizing after one episode that the anime was going to be a horrible trainwreck, and wanting to see what the hype had been all about. I started out feeling embarrassed for reading it and by the end I was just blown away. It's definitely a flawed project and would have greatly benefited from better communication between its three writers (WTF KEY?), but its high points were brilliant enough that I have mostly very fond memories of it. I loved the twists and turns that Moon/Terra threw at me, but Kotori route was the one that affected me the most. Tanaka is insanely good at this. Also the soundtrack is godlike.

Nowadays I compose music for English visual novels about gay women doing adventures, so thank you bad Rewrite anime for opening my eyes to a world of cool stuff and getting me some work.

Dr Pepper
Feb 4, 2012

Don't like it? well...



esselfortium posted:


Nowadays I compose music for English visual novels about gay women doing adventures, so thank you bad Rewrite anime for opening my eyes to a world of cool stuff and getting me some work.

So, what are their names?

esselfortium
Jul 19, 2006

Cumulonimbus Antagonistic Posting

Dr Pepper posted:

So, what are their names?

I did half the music in Studio Élan‘s “Heart of the Woods” and I’m the composer for several of their in-development projects! I’ve also worked on some other VNs and narrative games like “Subserial Network” and “National Park Girls”.

klapman
Aug 27, 2012

this char is good


I'm an absolute ace detective at figuring out who the wolves are in Raging Loop, and equally dire in actually doing anything with that information lmfao. I keep loving dying!!! The hint thing keeps going "ahh, that's the right move for playing Werewolf in real life, but in this situation it's not so good" and I've only ever played Werewolf like twice, it's just that my natural instincts seem to send me careening towards the nearest death!!!

I've never been more glad I'm not actually in a VN's situation lol

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Thuryl
Mar 14, 2007

My postillion has been struck by lightning.


esselfortium posted:

I did half the music in Studio Élan‘s “Heart of the Woods” and I’m the composer for several of their in-development projects! I’ve also worked on some other VNs and narrative games like “Subserial Network” and “National Park Girls”.

Oh hey, I did QA on National Park Girls and noticed your name in the credits but never found a way to congratulate you without it being weird. So uh, now that it's come up anyway, nice work on the music there.

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