Act

  • It’s weird, because if I remember correctly the summons appear as those stylized cards, but the battle cards are then just generic. It would have made a lot more sense to do like a YuGiOh thing where the servants lived in cards and you were calling upon them to attack. Still wouldn’t have been my cup of tea, but it wouldn’t have felt as out of…[Read more]

  • If you choose to interpret ‘I usually love these games but didn’t like this one, and they trade largely on titties so I’m also not the target audience’ as containing some covert insinution that people who like gatchas are scum (including myself I guess???) I can’t help you. Though I’d love to see the argument that gatcha games don’t pitch…[Read more]

  • OH GOD SOMEONE’S COMI

  • Okay? It didn’t do anything for me as a game or as porn. As far as I’m aware that doesn’t violate any cosmic laws. 

  • I mean, I play a lot of these myself, so yeah. That doesn’t change that each update for every game is followed by hundreds of comments going TITTIES over and over. I just recognize that I’m not the primary audience for these games, even if I do play them, so saberfen are certainly going to see a huge draw here nonsaberfen aren’t.

  • Well, yes, obviously, most gatchas use that format. It… doesn’t really affect whether I enjoy the actual battles or not. Compare Brave Frontier, which was deckbuilding but had fun battles on top of it.

  • It’s just not interesting. It doesn’t really require much thought, and worse, it decides to copy the card-game system that’s huge in gatchas for some reason even though it doesn’t have anything to do with the story or setting. I don’t understand why they went with cards instead of just regular turn-based or even better, tactical. The card system…[Read more]

  • Act wrote a new post, Downtime 6 days, 11 hours ago

    Yo, I’m aware the site went down. Overnight there was a massive CPU spike that used up our bandwidth for the whole month (!!!). I’m trying to figure out exactly what happened — hopefully it was a rogue plugin and […]

  • I tried and found the whole plot absurdly opaque, the art ugly, and the gameplay incredibly boring. It’s shitty even for a gacha game. Granted, I’m not motivated by seeing more Saber porn, so I may be missing the main draw.

    Still, there are plenty of porny gatchas that are actually comprehensible and enjoyable.

  • Eh, the notifications are only going to me and I don’t really care. I’ll probs do a DQ overview post eventually.

  • All I know about 7 is that it has a playtime of over 100 hours and I’m morbidly curious as to whether I can get through it or not. I have seen a decent amount of people say it was long but engaging enough to get through, so we’ll see.

  • Original of the first trilogy, remakes of the second. I’m enjoying 6 :×

  • It’s always odd to me that there isn’t a doesthedogdie-style database for trigger warnings, since it seems like it’d be so easy to community source.

    I also think that at least part of the reason why a tag system for warnings has been so slow to appear is that the first platform that does it is almost certainly going to have to deal with a…[Read more]

  • At risk of sending this thread careening toward a completely unrelated discussion, I wonder why FF got bigger in the west than DQ. Every DQ game I’ve played is better than every FF game I’ve played. I’ve been working my way through the DQ catalogue from the beginning on the advice of smallestbrother (I’m on 6 now), and even the first few were…[Read more]

  • Off-topic, but Dragon Quest 5 was very good.

  • Act commented on the post, Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash 2 weeks ago

    Isn’t there a scene in the infamous Ono comic where Brock sneaks up on Misty in the bath? I’m not sure if it’s fair to count the Ono comic, though.

  • Act commented on the post, Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash 2 weeks ago

    This was some unholy Combination of Obnoxious Anime Comic Relief and the Brock. I’m not sure if there’s a specific name for that, but it’s certainly a subtrope that gets enough play that it deserves its own.

  • Wow, that’s interesting — one of the scriptwriters for the show must have had their shit together. In the book they all still have basically a month’s worth of money and they do it just to practice fighting.

  • The absurdly-named Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash is an iteration of the transported-to-fantasy-world story that tries to distinguish itself by being, like, realistic, man. I found its overuse of the worst anime […]

    • So… what is a grimgar? Are there other grimgars who aren’t of fantasy and ash? Grimgars of fear and rom-com?

    • Wow, that’s interesting — one of the scriptwriters for the show must have had their shit together. In the book they all still have basically a month’s worth of money and they do it just to practice fighting.

    • I’ve only watched the anime, didn’t read the novel. From what you’re saying here, it does appear that the anime significantly improves on the story. The low-key focus comes out stronger without boggling the narrative under unnecessary details, at the very least.

      On the other hand, I didn’t feel any particular attachment to the characters, so I think their portrayal is rather faithful to the novel (I did like Maria, a cleric who replaces the dead guy, but I think I liked her for the wrong reasons. I actually appreciated her no-bullshit “I’m here to do work and work I do” attitude, and when her tragic story was revealed and she started to become more open, etc., it came as a disappointment).

      Overall, I’d say the anime is OK if you’re in the right mood, though still deeply flawed and very much plagued by fanservice and character cliches.

      Also, I still can’t get over the dark knights (or however they’re called) guild. Sure, let’s join a fucking death cult that somehow is allowed to operate alongside churches that should hate its guts, that’s clearly a splendid idea.

      • Head priest is voiced by Kotomine Kirei. That’s why the death cult is allowed to operate without harassment.
        The anime is probably overall better than the LN I’d say, but it also means you have to follow the camera over to the girls every time Joke/Pervert Boy (what is that trope called anyway?) has an opinion about them.

        • what is that trope called anyway?

          The Brock.

          • Act replied 2 weeks ago

            This was some unholy Combination of Obnoxious Anime Comic Relief and the Brock. I’m not sure if there’s a specific name for that, but it’s certainly a subtrope that gets enough play that it deserves its own.

    • Argh, yeah, I forgot how two-dimensional the characters were. I mean the Joke Pervert boy is the worst by miles, but none of the characters were actually compelling.I didn’t read the LN, just watched the anime, and it seems from the review that the anime is strictly superior, if only because it doesn’t waste time teaching people the glorious drudgery of opening bank accounts.Also the anime has Kotomine Kirei’s voice actor play the head of the priest’s guild, so obviously someone had their shit together.Speaking of, I do wonder about worlds that stick to strict RPG tropes even down to classes. We have something similar in the West where we’ll take, like, Dungeons and Dragons, and tell a story in a world nominally faithful to those mechanics. As such, the trope doesn’t really bother me all that much, as long as I don’t think about, say, why there’s an advertised Thieves’ Guild that never gets in trouble with the law.Death cults operating in the mainstream is totally kosher, though; not sure what illhousen’s problem is there.

      • Argh, yeah, I forgot how two-dimensional the characters were.

        The monsters had some surprising depth to them, considering they’re treated as expendable mooks by the narrative for the most part.

        (Though that actually created a dissonance for me: like, we see them have their own society, living their own lives when the heroes are away, so… ah… are we sure we should root for those random mercs working on clearly corrupt government – given it sees nothing wrong with employing amnesiac conscripts on a very deadly job? What exactly makes them better than the goblins? What makes their claim on the land more valid, aside from pure strength of arms?

        When the protagonists are nicknamed Goblin Slayers, is it some kind of I Am Legend shit going on here? Like, is it an ironic nod towards them becoming genocidial warmongers?

        Though I guess I shouldn’t be surprising with Kotomine running the show. He probably has a boner thinking about how to best point such things out to the protagonists.)

        We have something similar in the West where we’ll take, like, Dungeons and Dragons, and tell a story in a world nominally faithful to those mechanics.

        Are you talking about Dragonlance books and the like? Because they were kinda shit, and some of it can be attributed to them following D&D mechanics and overall adventure structure.

        I’d say generally it’s a good idea to conceal the RPG roots and reconnect mechanics back to reality.

        • I mean, I know why people like books and other media that ape tabletop/video game mechanics. They’re familiar and relatable to people who play them. It’s not like folks who don’t play games are reading that stuff. 

          I’m not even mad about it, honestly. Most of the smarter authors stick to parody when using this stuff, and move away as the material is better able to stand on its own. The authors that don’t remain charitably obscure. 

      • Light novels are definitely way worse about sticking to RPG mechanics that don’t make sense than things in the west. Sure, you see things like “the Thieves Guild”, but that’s a narrative deal, it’s not like… Tate no Yuusha literally having characters pull down 3D character sheets to check their stats like it was fucking Sword Art Online.

        • Sword Art Online might also have played a role in all this, with later writers just flat-out ignoring the fact that SAO was a literal video game and so had the only real justification for game mechanics. When your worldbuilding fail exceeds SAO, you know you’ve got problems.
          I watched KonoSuba recently (which is now one of my favorite isekai, probably due to the low bar for the genre), and while it’s still dumb to have a ‘real’ world run on game mechanics, I think they salvaged the premise as well as they could by making it a failing world that gets marketed for reincarnation and has actual goddesses acting like salespeople to get folks to go there. That was pretty goddamn hilarious and a good way to frame the usual ‘average loser protagonist reborn in another world but now he’s totally hax and gets all the chicks’ plot.

          • Well, to be fair, Konosuba is more of a parody of the typical isekai plot. It looked at the premise, said “this is fucking stupid”, and wrote an appropriately fucking stupid plot to go with it.

            That said, I’m surprised I’ve never seen a masochistic tank character before Konosuba. You think that’d be an obvious joke. Who else would pick a tank class in a real life situation?

            • If I had to be a tank to be a Death Knight, I’d be one in a heartbeat.

               

              The real reason it took so long is that the idea of a ‘tank character’ in Konosuba’s sense largely doesn’t exist outside of MMOs, since most non-MMOs don’t give you that many options, if any, to get enemies to attack you. So you just end up being a fighter who can survive a few hits.

              While I still suggest watching Aura Battler Dunbine for a good look at a silly Isekai story, you should also watch Chou Mashin Wataru for a more parody look at it, from around the same era.

              Relatedly, both Chou Mashin Wataru and Aura Battler Dunbine are the stars of the upcoming Isekai-themed game Super Robot Wars X.

               

               

              It’s prolly going to do the whole isekai premise way better than Grimgar.
               

    • I did like that the anime frequently pushed the idea that the monsters were people with their own societies, giving them things like agriculture and civilians in addition to being smart and using traps/tactics.
      I remember that endcard after the group kills that gang of goblins – it was just the leader goblin sitting on a crate surrounded by little doglike critters petting one and I was just like, shit.

    • I’m mostly baffled over why it’s so prevalent. Like, sure, power fantasies, I get it, but there is a lot of ways to turn your SI into god when you’re the author, so why this particular gimmick?

      Was there some genre-defining story that everyone now copies or something?

      • That story was called Dragon Quest.
         

        • Off-topic, but Dragon Quest 5 was very good.

          • Have you been playing DQ5 remake or DQ5 original? You’d probably understand more why America went for FF over DQ if you played the originals of both. The early games of DQ were SUPER ROUGH and had a lot of incredibly unfun design decisions. And then DQ6 and 7 were incredibly poorly made and even Japan ran screaming from the series for a while.
             

            • Original of the first trilogy, remakes of the second. I’m enjoying 6 :×

            • I want royalties on this gag.

            • I hear people liked 6’s remake. It probably helped that it didn’t cost over 130 dollars to buy.

              DQ7’s big issue is that it’s super slow and tedious to actually travel around and there’s a TON of travelling around and the plot is very slow and not all that interesting.
               

            • All I know about 7 is that it has a playtime of over 100 hours and I’m morbidly curious as to whether I can get through it or not. I have seen a decent amount of people say it was long but engaging enough to get through, so we’ll see.

            • Get the remake if you value your sanity. My frirnd who loves DQ had to play the remake version. It fixes a lot of those issues I mentioned.
               
               

            • Methinks it is perhaps time for you to take this to a discussion post.

            • Eh, the notifications are only going to me and I don’t really care. I’ll probs do a DQ overview post eventually.

        • I’ve heard that Dragon Quest was weirdly influential on certain kind of Japanese media, but I would like details.

          Though I’d say it still doesn’t explain the love for mechanics. Like, D&D was influential in fantasy circles as well, codifying the portrayal of various character races and archetypes, but it’s not like many authors outright used Vancian magic or talked about stats and levels in the narrative.

          • “Dragon Quest” is sort of like the Tolkien of JRPGs: not the first videogame RPG ever (the “Ultima” series, for instance, came first), but it basically created the JRPG genre.

            • At risk of sending this thread careening toward a completely unrelated discussion, I wonder why FF got bigger in the west than DQ. Every DQ game I’ve played is better than every FF game I’ve played. I’ve been working my way through the DQ catalogue from the beginning on the advice of smallestbrother (I’m on 6 now), and even the first few were quite cute and entertaining, while FF always has left me feeling like I wasted my time.

            • Could have been a localization issue. Early localization and marketing was hit-and-miss enough that even a better game wouldn’t necessarily become popular or even well-known outside Japan. It took Fire Emblem until like 2003 to cross the ocean, for instance, and that series is goddamn spectacular.

            • I never really liked DQ. It’s the gameplay.

               

              Well, not completely true. I adore DQ Monsters. The main series is largely just kind of mehly generic gameplay-wise. It does have some good story, but eh I just don’t feel it a lot of the time.

               
               

            • Yeah, there it is. A three-year gap is way too long, especially in that time period. Heck, maybe Final Fantasy came out in the States earlier, despite having been made later.
              By 1989, a lot of RPGs like Wasteland, Bard’s Tale 1-3, and NetHack had already shaped Western perceptions of what an RPG should be like. It wouldn’t surprise me that DQ was too little, too late.

            • And then Final Fantasy 1 came out less than a year later in America and way a lot more impressive gameplay and story-wise.
               
               

          • A lot of early parodies of DQ in Japanese media directly used the mechanics, and it stuck. It just became the idea of going to a fantasy RPG-eque world ALSO means the mechanics existing too. A really famous show actually was just straight up Dragon Quest but as a really funny parody.
             

            • A comedy or parody can get away with a lot of stuff that wouldn’t fly in a serious story, though.

    • Not familiar with it, so can’t say.

      What I mean is that you don’t really need to reference game mechanics in any form even if you’re writing about a world that originated as an RPG setting. Like, there are stories about a bunch of brave adventurers exploring the ruins of a temple to forgotten gods and stealing their shit that were written before RPGs were invented in modern sense. There isn’t any need to establish that characters fall into specific classes with codified abilities instead of being, you know, just people with skills that can naturally be learned in a given setting.

      • The plot of Dungeon Meshi is, if I remember correctly, the female lead’s sister is eaten by a dragon and now they have to hunt it down and kill it so she can be ressurected (since they need the body or uh… the umm… remains to ressurect a corpse). This is more a frame for ‘why we’re going into the dungeon and also figuring out how to survive in a place with little natural food.

        My favored story of this kind (called Isekai) is probably the original anime one (as I can’t think of an earlier example in anime), Aura Battler Dunbine. Which also has a protagonist being summoned to be used by a sketchy government. Except well, he figures out he’s fighting on the side of evil, or at least the more evil side.
         
         

    • Act replied 2 weeks ago

      Isn’t there a scene in the infamous Ono comic where Brock sneaks up on Misty in the bath? I’m not sure if it’s fair to count the Ono comic, though.

      • The Brock is more like the PG version of that trope, I feel. The Ono comic is… definitely a PG take on anything that can have a non-PG take on it.

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