Sorry, Spammy, I couldn't find your top ten list >_> I tried D:
But I failed.
Anyways, I've recovered this. All of it is Athos' stuff, but even then I couldn't get all of them.
- 40% comedy, 50% drama, 10% minigames.
- Little Busters hits a landmark for me as the first Key VN I ever played, and the second I ever watched after AIR, but it'd be a lie if I said I didn't jump into it with some amount of prejudice.
- It's a story about a group of friends playing games and doing stupid stuff together to forget about their sad childhoods. There's more to it of course-- I mean, it's Key. Of course there's more.
- The visuals are modest. I remember there being this one particular CG that was so utterly awesome that I honestly considered changing my notebook's wallpaper for the first time in 4 years. Oh, and the backgrounds look pretty. ...someone told me that while I was playing, I dunno.
- The soundtrack is... good. I feel compelled to say this, because the main -and probably only- reason as to why I didn't just drop the game halfway through was because of this damn tune playing on the background every time I load the game, like a promise of more important things to come. It's no exaggeration to say that this song was the biggest thing I took away from this entire VN.
- The plot is... well, objectively speaking, pretty decent. The main plot, that is. I never really got into the side routes, mainly because they were clearly added for the sake of having different heroines to pick from, and they're all essentially the same tired formula. Just... girls with extravagant issues waiting for the protagonist and his hidden B rank trauma-healing skill to save them. There isn't anything necessarily wrong with that, but the problem is that the game outright forces you to go through each and every one of the heroines before continuing with the plot, and while I did kind of see what they were trying to do, I still found it very frustrating.
- The main cast, however... is actually pretty solid! It's a shame I didn't like the protagonist all that much, but the core 5 characters of the story are all funny, smart and endearing-- specially the guys. Not to mention the seiyuus are freaking committed. This really helps to emphasize the moments Key has always been good for, that being the sad scenes. Great stuff.
- By the way, there's no porn.
I honestly can't recommend this game, because I'm afraid the story didn't do a whole lot for me. It's not bad, by any means-- it's just that I've already read it. There is stuff to praise, however, and this is by no means a poor game. I'm actually kind of curious about how will they go around adapting it. We'll see.
- 80% drama, 20% comedy.
- Now this was... different. I only played this because someone made a review of it on TGWTG (which I have yet to watch), saying it's apparently a 4chan's favorite. A good enough reason as any to pick something up, I'd say.
- The premise isn't too complicated. You get one heart attack, and all of a sudden they're sending you to a specialized school filled with disabled teenagers who can't adapt to society for one reason or another.
- The visuals are gorgeous. Not only are the CGs detailed and beautiful, but there's a LOT of them, too. Good to know, of course, because--
- There is no voice acting. Man, I don't think I've read one of those since Tsukihime. The soundtrack is pretty decent. There is something very particular about the main song, because it starts off as dramatic and foreboding, but then you hear an acoustic guitar playing and it's all happy again. Threw me off more than a few times.
- Then there's the plot. Damn, what a contrast from Little Busters. I'll be honest, I had heard of this game before, but I always decided against it because of the premise. To be fair, it didn't really betray my expectations. I mean, in the end you're still helping girls to overcome their traumas through the power of love and casual intercourse, but the thing about that is... it has surprisingly little to do with their disabilities! They have issues, of course, but these are way too subtle and delicate to solve by just being the one guy in the whole world who understands them. The game actually punishes you for treating them like helpless little girls waiting for someone to save them. On that note--
- The game difficulty is freaking merciless. I couldn't manage to get a single good end in this game without going through the bad one first. You get one choice wrong, and you're out. You think it's a simple issue of spending time with the character and favoring her over the rest, but in reality it's a delicate tango of giving them space and securing information about their issues before even attempting to "save" them. ...with some exceptions. Whether this comes off as realistic or imaginary difficulty is up to you.
- The h scenes are all relatively short, but in good taste. The game is clearly playing favorites given how disproportional the number of scenes per character is, but it's usually in accordance to the character's personality. Anyways, I liked them.
I have no issues recommending this game. It surprised me by playing with my expectations, and I like being surprised. With that said, this is the closest thing to a dating sim that I've ever played, so I wouldn't suggest it if you're looking for a complicated plot.
- 40% action, 40% comedy, 18% drama, 2% ******* *******.
- Ah yes, Utawarerumono. What a nostalgia trip. I'm only adding this here because I never made a formal review of it, and because I actually re-played it recently as I was reading Little Busters. Yes, I've officially reached a point where I can play two VNs simultaneously. Of course I'm just talking about playing the mindless rpg game while putting the other one on autoplay, but dammit, I'm counting it.
- Yes, this VN comes with an integrated rpg minigame. I'll come back to that later.
- Very standard setting. You wake up in a different world full of furries with no memories and a mask that cannot be removed. Wait, what was that last one again?
- The visuals are nothing extraordinary, but they get the job done. The videogame graphics are clearly outdated by today's standards, though you really should've expected that if you're playing a 2002 eroge.
- The soundtrack is rather humble, and I'm afraid the most vivid memory you'll keep from this VN is that damn battle music from the rpg minigame.
- The plot is... Hm. How do I put this. This isn't a Visual Novel. This is Breath of Fire with porn. And better dialogue. And a proper main character. Seriously, this really should be just another rpg game, and I wouldn't take another look at it... if it wasn't for our beloved masked protagonist, Emonzaem-- Kiritsug-- Hakuoro. About that--
- The characters are all fun to watch, and although they often stick to their archetypes, they will actually make their own decisions when push comes to shove. The game's greatest strength, however, is the protagonist, and a good protagonist is always a good thing. He's clever, composed, reasonable, badass, and unpredictable, all in the same package. Good stuff.
- Oh, and this is just me, but the author has a fantastic sense of humor. Watching the characters fool around between fights can turn out to be unexpectedly rewarding, and I really appreciate a game that can still make me laugh after all these years.
- There are h scenes, I guess. Only a couple of them are actually relevant to the plot, but other than that, they're usually awkward and unsatisfying.
All in all, a fun little eroge. A great game for casual players, and I'd recommend it to anyone... if it wasn't for that got. Damn. Minigame. That stupid, pointless, broken, unbalanced, sad excuse of an rpg engine that tortured me at every... single... point of the story. I played the game again thinking I had it figured out, and it was STILL a fight for my life at every turn. I don't even want to think about what it was like the first time. I remember comparing it to blind chess at one point.
Listen to me, do not. I repeat. Do NOT play this game in hard mode 3 right off the bat. If you want to get any enjoyment out of this, stick to normal mode and have fun. It's not worth the effort. NOTHING is worth the effort.
- Second game I've played done by KID, known for their cheap soundtracks, clever settings and glorious mind screws.
- Ratios are something like 10% action, 10% comedy, 30% drama and 50% Science Fiction Goodness.
- It's about a... how do I even-- It's about a plane crash. ...and body swapping.
- Visuals are modest. Couple of FMVs. Nothing fancy, though.
- Soundtrack is terrible, but adequate. Sad scenes are sad, creepy scenes are creepy.
- The plot is... really good. Takes some time to get going, but by god, you better don't stop paying attention.
- Characters are a mixed bag. Much like Ever17, most of them are fine, but there's always this one guy that gets on your nerves. Doesn't really matter, I mean, the story is mostly about the protagonists, and they are both very fun to follow.
- No h scenes. Sorry, nothing to see here.
- Finally... the game... *sigh* Look, this is not a bad game. In fact, it's a great game. However, it has one major flaw, and it's that ***** ** ** **** ******. Hell, there isn't even * **** ******! Freaking Saya no Uta had a **** ******, and that game was DESIGNED to be **********! What gives?!
Don't play this game. Seriously, don't... ok, maybe if you have this crave for mystery or science fiction like I do, you might be able to get something out of it, but I have no intention of recommending an unfinished game. Stay away from it.
- 60% action, 20% comedy, 20% drama.
- ...this is one of those games where you know exactly how the entire thing's gonna go roughly 5 minutes into it.
- Zanmataisei Demonbane is about magic, violence, fighting spirit, giant robots, H.P. Lovecraft, and gratuitous fanservice. Lots and lots of fanservice.
- There are quite a few CGs in this game, and to be fair, it looks pretty damn good when it comes to the fight scenes and backgrounds. Visuals are definitely not this game's weak point.
- Soundtrack... also good on its own right. They know how to get you pumped when it matters.
- ...then there's the plot. Oh, man.
- I'm sorry, but-- this is one stupid game. You really need to squint your eyes and acknowledge the true nature of this eroge if you want to get any enjoyment out of it. Well, you can try, I mean. I couldn't.
- The characters are... mostly bland? The protagonist is fairly modest. He has a good sense of humor and does the shonen protagonist thing pretty well.
- Absolutely everyone else is a walking stereotype, though. I did like one of them, mostly because her seiyuu is just too good. The fact she had a route of her own was a pleasant surprise.
- Finally, the h scenes... this game will find the flimsiest excuses to shove an h scene in there, and they're all mostly unpleasant. ...mostly.
Play? No no, don't play this game...! Please! It is essentially a very outdated giant mecha anime, and I'm afraid the narration doesn't help to remedy the fact that it is, in fact, not an anime. I know you can find better ways to spend your time.
Sekien no Inganock -What a Beautiful People-
- 50% drama, 10% comedy, 20% action, 20% science fiction goodness.
- Man, I needed this. I swear I've been playing nothing but tedious uninspiring VNs lately.
- Inganock of the Brightest Flame, made by Liar Soft, is a tale about a cold little city surrounded by mist and drowning in misery, and a very small group of people trying their darnedest to make the best of it.
- This game is gorgeous, but at the same time, it's very humble. There are a lot of CGs, and I thought the art is great, but the action scenes are depressingly cheap. It's not distracting, though.
- Great soundtrack. Lots of violins, piano, guitar. Very relaxing. Then there's the fight music, which kicks all sorts of ***. It's a very short soundtrack, though. Then again, it's a pretty short game.
- The plot. The plot is.... well it's a great setting, and the main story is quite decent, but that's not...
- This game is a play. It's theatrical, over the top, sentences will repeat over and over for emphasis, interludes, lots of monologuing. You could even call it pretentious. BUT. It never ever comes close to being tedious, because there is just too much heart in the story. I could go on about this for hours, but I know there's gonna be a lot of bias in my words. I just really loved the narration for this one.
- The characters are easily the best part, though. Not the side characters-- no no. They're ok, but it's difficult to empathize with new people every chapter. I'm talking about the three main characters.
- For the better part of the game, this is a story about three people struggling to keep a hold of their humanity in a world filled with hopelessness. All three of them are so greatly written that when **** starts hitting the fan, I was praying furiously in hopes that this story wasn't a tragedy. Really good.
- Then... Then there's the porn. Oh god, the porn. If there was ever a game where h scenes should be optional, THIS IS IT. Just... I can't tell you to skip them, since the dialogue in some of them actually matter, but for the love of god, turn off the music. ALWAYS. EVERY TIME.
- ...oh, and there is also a rather pointless obligatory minigame between chapters. Get a walkthrough.
"Should you play this game"? Maybe. I would. Definitely recommending this one. It has a great setting, a great ending, and I enjoyed most of the stuff in between. Hell, I liked it so much that I played it twice. ...rather, I had to play it twice, because the fully voiced patch was released right in the middle of my first playthrough.
Edited by Sanagami, 14 December 2012 - 07:05 PM.