Tag: visual novel

Dysfunctional Systems: Learning to Manage Chaos, or, How to Make Me Stop Playing Your Game

Step 1: Have an interesting premise but instead of plot, have the first hour-plus of gameplay be boring as all hell and feature a whiny, obnoxious protagonist

Step 2: Be mind-numbingly boring.

Step 3: Have the male protagonist launch into what sounds weirdly like a defense of the US using the atom bomb on Japan and then have him call the female protag a bleeding heart for saying that’s morally abhorrent. Do not present his view with any kind of textual criticism.

Step 4: Be so boring I’m driven to look up reviews to see if anyone else was bored to tears. Review lookup leads to to tons of fanwank.

Step 5: Include highly sexualized images of the 14-year-old main character in the game’s CGs.

Step 6: Caption the image “I love little girls.

NGL “suddenly: child porn!” is not what I imagined I was signing up for when I downloaded this game.

Aoi Shiro

UGHGHG why has this been so hard to write. Anyway.

If you’re looking for an urban fantasy VN about blood-sucking creatures, mystic eyes of X perception, repressed memories, inappropriately-timed sexual innuendos and weird incest implications (plus, as a free bonus, pedophilia implications!), just go play Tsukihime. If you’ve played Tsukihime and loved Ciel so much you want a palette-swapped version of her in a knockoff story that also incorporates elements of Higurashi, you’ll probably get some mild enjoyment out of Aoi Shiro.

“Mild enjoyment” describes my experience with Aoi Shiro. I finished the whole thing and was interested enough in it, but it wasn’t really great and I don’t think I would recommend it to anyone. It was pretty heavily flawed, mostly beset by a bizarre route-railroading system as well as some obnoxious anime stock characters and serious, serious pacing issues. Mother of God the pacing issues.

I thought the long digressions into food preparation in Fate had prepared me for any food porn. I was wrong. (more…)

World End Economica

I quit this game after the protagonist’s second rant about how terrible women are, where he says — and I swear I’m directly quoting — “This is why I hate women.” However, for my feelings on the other aspects of this game, you can just read this delightfully irritable review. Game was terrible in pretty much every area, and considering it was ostensibly a ‘visual novel’ it’s hilaribad that it was like 50% plain black screens.

Don’t play this game, don’t buy Spice and Wolf, don’t give the jackass who wrote this shit any money.

Seven Kingdoms: The Princess Problem (Guest Review)

Hello, Dragon Quill! This is Ember with a guest review!

Seven Kingdoms: The Princess Problem is what the developer calls a political fantasy/otome VN, but I personally like to refer to it as a diplomacy simulator. You play a young noblewoman from one of seven kingdoms (well, one of six, really — one of the titular kingdoms isn’t playable) who’s been sent to an international summit to foster peace between the nations. Part of that peace-fostering process involves intermarriage, which is where the otome/romance element comes in. But there’s a lot more to do on Vail Isle than scout out a future spouse (or paramour): there are mysteries you can solve, secrets you can uncover, and a world-alteringly important diplomatic process you can attempt to influence for personal gain, the good of your nation, or the continued peace and prosperity of the known world. (more…)

Digital: A Love Story

Love is really driving the whole ~computer interface~ gimmick into the ground, eh? I kind of wonder if maybe she’s good at writing monologues but just doesn’t know how to write an actual narrative and has become reliant on it as a quick way to skip writing scene transitions and time passages.

This game has basically none of the plusses of Analogue and all of the flaws, including thinking very highly of itself for being ~subversie~. Ohmygod, a person in love with a computer????  What could this mean??? No one has done this before!!!!

It manages to come across as both very proud of itself and very empty at the same time. Though I’ll give it this, it definitely made me feel like a 1337 h4x0r by the end.

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Theresia…

This was a survival-horror visual novel, a intriguing combination that started strong and then collapsed under its own weight. It was creepy and engaging for about an hour and then careened off into mind-numbingly boring and never recovered. I started using a walkthrough around the 3-hour mark to expedite it and eventually couldn’t even deal with that anymore and ended up reading a plot summary.

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Ever17 (Guest Review)

I see what you mean about drowning women on cover art, Farla.

I heard people on the internet say this was a good game so I checked out an LP. I really should have learned my lesson after Nine Hours Nine Persons Nine Doors, especially because it was recommended by people who liked Nine Hours Nine Persons Nine Doors and was cowritten by the guy who wrote Nine Hours Nine Persons Nine Doors, but here we are. At least my bad habits generate angry reviews for your entertainment.

Ever17 is not a good game, or a good story, or a good anything. I do think, however, it could easily reach “so bad it’s good” territory, because the plot is hilarious. (more…)

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