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Old 3rd Jul 2012, 08:01 PM   #1
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Default Visual Novel Recommendations

Does anyone else here play/read them? What are your favorites?

These are the ones I've tried so far and would recommend to others. I'll try to include approximate age ratings, for those who are interested.

Digital: A Love Story [T] by Christine Love

Don't Take It Personally, Babe, It Just Ain't Your Story [M] by Christine Love
The treatment of LGBT characters is fantastic, which isn't too surprising given that the author/creator appears to be LGBT herself.

Trigger warning: homophobic language from the characters (especially one jealous ex-girlfriend)

Analogue: A Hate Story [M] by Christine Love
Trigger warning: misogyny and homophobic language from the characters (the work itself is actually feminist)

That Cheap and Sacred Thing [T] by carosene
Trigger warning: blood (one scene)

Magical Diary [E 10+] by Hanako Games
This one offers a bit more gameplay than your average visual novel, making it a good starting point if you're coming from more traditional games. Don't think this one needs a trigger warning, though one relationship path is a bit troubling.

I'm debating downloading Katawa Shoujo. I've heard that it's supposed to be pretty good, but there's a few things that bother me about it. Anyone else played it? What are your thoughts?
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Old 3rd Jul 2012, 08:17 PM   #2
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

I can private message you about Katawa Shoujo since it's an 18+ game if you'd like.

Non-18+ Visual Novels I will recommend:
Planetarian: [E/E10+] A forgotten planetarium in a broken down city left over in a dystopian future is still run by a lone robot girl. You WILL cry if you play this game, and it's only 2~5 hours to read it, which is short for a VN.

Umineko no Naku Koro ni: [T/M]An extended family takes a vacation to a private island when suddenly murders begin to happen. Very good horror-genre VN series.

Ever17: [T] An amazingly complex plot about a sinking underwater amusement park with a group of people stuck inside. Multiple endings that, once finished, unlock the true ending. The plot twist will blow your mind and stay with you for long after the game is finished.

999: 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors: [Officially rated M, mostly for swearing and violent descriptions] This game is on the Nintendo DS. By the same people who wrote Ever17, this time a group of 9 people are trapped on a boat. They have to escape in 9 hours or they all die, and they must solve some really great puzzles along the way. Once again, multiple endings with one true ending that will blow your mind. A sequel is coming to the 3DS this October.
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Old 3rd Jul 2012, 09:12 PM   #3
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

What is a visual novel...?! Sorry im a noob in that area I guess. I am big into Audio Books however... not the same thing?
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Old 3rd Jul 2012, 09:36 PM   #4
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by laras View Post
What is a visual novel...?! Sorry im a noob in that area I guess. I am big into Audio Books however... not the same thing?
Imagine reading a book, but you can see the characters (even if they don't move much!), the backgrounds, and even hear music playing in the background. Some VNs will even have the characters be voiced.
They take a long time to read,, since they're basically books in a different format.
A lot of them have amazing plots, some of them even get adapted into popular anime!
The only downside is that some/many VNs have lots of sexual content.
While a lot of good ones don't have anything sexual, some of them do, so you have to be wary unless you think you can tolerate the scenes.
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Old 3rd Jul 2012, 09:55 PM   #5
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

I see, I used to listen too Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan. I would have pictures of the toons saved on my desktop and open the ones if they were in the chapter. (nerd side coming out!)

But I was obsessed with these books. I think I have read all of them 5 times. If you knew how long these books were you would know that I am crazy
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Old 4th Jul 2012, 12:22 AM   #6
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

I'm currently playing through Higurashi When They Cry. I've also got Narcissu patiently waiting for me to play it.
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Old 4th Jul 2012, 09:37 AM   #7
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nazo View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by laras View Post
What is a visual novel...?! Sorry im a noob in that area I guess. I am big into Audio Books however... not the same thing?
Imagine reading a book, but you can see the characters (even if they don't move much!), the backgrounds, and even hear music playing in the background. Some VNs will even have the characters be voiced.
They take a long time to read,, since they're basically books in a different format.
A lot of them have amazing plots, some of them even get adapted into popular anime!
The only downside is that some/many VNs have lots of sexual content.
While a lot of good ones don't have anything sexual, some of them do, so you have to be wary unless you think you can tolerate the scenes.
Pretty much what Nazo said, hence the age ratings. None of the ones I recommended contain anything too bad, especially in comparison to games like GTA, but you do have to be cautious.

Some VN's go beyond being simply books in an electronic format. Digital and Analogue especially go to great lengths to be less "book-like," and Magical Diary tries to incorporate puzzles and RPG elements (though it could have done more, IMO).

In short: a visual novel appears to be any game whose main mechanic is reading, but it can include other mechanics.
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Old 5th Jul 2012, 12:23 PM   #8
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

Quote:
Umineko no Naku Koro ni: [T/M]An extended family takes a vacation to a private island when suddenly murders begin to happen. Very good horror-genre VN series.

Ever17: [T] An amazingly complex plot about a sinking underwater amusement park with a group of people stuck inside. Multiple endings that, once finished, unlock the true ending. The plot twist will blow your mind and stay with you for long after the game is finished.

999: 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors: [Officially rated M, mostly for swearing and violent descriptions] This game is on the Nintendo DS. By the same people who wrote Ever17, this time a group of 9 people are trapped on a boat. They have to escape in 9 hours or they all die, and they must solve some really great puzzles along the way. Once again, multiple endings with one true ending that will blow your mind. A sequel is coming to the 3DS this October.
Wow. I can't believe that I posted something so similar to these. Umineko is definitely my favorite of these still, but I've only reached one end to Ever17. I guess I posted about similar things because of the morphogenic resonance from your mind if you get the reference there. I never played the planetarium one. Would you say it's as good as the others?
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Old 5th Jul 2012, 04:51 PM   #9
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

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Originally Posted by TonyTheBear View Post
I never played the planetarium one. Would you say it's as good as the others?
It's far shorter and doesn't have a mind-blowing twist or anything, but it will leave you emotionally drained. It only takes a few hours to read, so give it a shot if you get a chance.
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Old 5th Jul 2012, 10:17 PM   #10
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

Well, the only one I've played is 999: 9 Hours, 9 Persons, 9 Doors, and it was AMAZING. I can't wait for the sequel to come out!

I don't think it really counts, but I've watched the anime versions of Higurashi and Umineko no naku koro ni, and they're two of my favorite animes, (granted I don't watch that much anime, but I still think they're awesome) so I'm sure I'd like they're visual novel counterparts.
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Old 5th Jul 2012, 11:46 PM   #11
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

I'm definitely going to count MS Paint Adventures as a visual novel because that totally is what it is.

Homestuck: [T - swearing] No official rating because it is on the internet. And because it is still in progress. Note that it still being in progress means that it is not short. It has over 400,000 words and the story is not yet complete. It's been running for over 3 years. Each "page" has an image, either animated or static and some are even flash animations with music! And you haven't seen a plot as complicated as this. Ever. It takes a little while to get to the real meat of the work, but it is amazing. It's a work of comedy and simply excels at it. What are you waiting for? Start reading!
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Old 6th Jul 2012, 06:38 PM   #12
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Default Re: Visual Novel Recommendations

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I don't think it really counts, but I've watched the anime versions of Higurashi and Umineko no naku koro ni, and they're two of my favorite animes, (granted I don't watch that much anime, but I still think they're awesome) so I'm sure I'd like they're visual novel counterparts.
Okay, I just think you should know that, compared to the visual novels of umineko, the anime is HORRID. It completely ruins just about everything. You honestly should go back and read the visual novels. If you are patient, you won't regret it! As for Higurashi, I have only seen the anime and read some of the manga... The anime stood well enough on its own and didn't have so many characters as umineko so I definitely liked that anime adaption better until it got to things like Higurashi Kira. That was just flat-out wrong...

Also, Cascade, MSPA is also something I've read. It isn't quite like a visual novel. It is merely a webcomic. There is a difference between comics and visual novels. Visual novels are also almost exclusively from Japan... But I do love MSPA or at least what I've read. Sadly I haven't experienced homestuck yet, but I read all of Problem Sleuth, Bard Quest, and Jail Break. They were all witty and fun!

Last edited by TonyTheBear; 6th Jul 2012 at 06:41 PM..
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