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Sunday, February 28, 2016

10 Visual Novels to Go:

Today I finished reading the bonus Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru visual novel that came with the blurays of the anime.  It was cute, but nothing important or interesting happened.  Even fans of Yuuki Yuuna can afford to skip this product, unlike the Washio Sumi light novel which is pivotal to understanding the whole series.

That leaves ten visual novels to go on my to-do list.  I doubt even a year of intensive efforts could finish them all.  But at least the number is down to the single digits.  Almost.  I'm somewhere in the middle of all ten of these visual novels, since I at least tried them all out to see if they were any good before postponing the full tackling of the projects for later:

First off is Majikoi, which I'm still working on after all this time.  I finished Christiane Friedrich's route and am now working on Umeko's route.  After that only Momoyo and Agave routes remain before I'm finally, finally done with this way-too-long epic.

It won't help any though, because after that will come Majikoi S.  And by the time Majikoi S is finished, I'm sure the translators will have finished up Majikoi A.  So I'm pretty much condemned to read Majikoi for the rest of my life.

Then comes Imouto Paradise.  I'm on Rio's route, with Hiyori's and Michiru's still to come.  I expect the translators will be done with Imouto Paradise 2 before I finish this one.  I guess I'll be stuck on this franchise for life too.

Then there's also Really? Really!.  The sequel to Shuffle and Tick Tack.  I've been playing Shuffle and its variants seemingly all my life as well.

Then there's Osananajimi wa Daitouryou Fandisk.  I played the original what feels like a lifetime ago, but they just keep coming out with extra sequels, so the slog never ends.

Then there's Fate/Ataraxia.  There's no point playing this game until I've read Fate/Stay Night in full.  There's no point reading Fate/Stay Night so long as they keep doing anime about it (which is easier and better than the original.)  So basically there's no point reading this visual novel, but it still feels like a project I've been working on for a lifetime.

Koichoco is next.  For some reason this visual novel got an English translation, and it has fantastic art, so it's hard to resist.  I've already watched the anime and thought it was good but nothing special.  The visual novel has a chance to improve on that first impression however.

Hoshizora no Memoria came out of left field, but being one of the rare recipients of a fan translation, you have to respect its popularity even without receiving an anime adaption.  From what I've seen so far, I expect great things from this visual novel.  It'll probably end up on my top ten visual novels that I've actually read list, once I've actually read it.

Aiyoku no Eustia is kind of a strange one.  Only the very beginning is translated into English, but it's such a good visual novel that it's worth reading if only for that tiny beginning.  Like eating one slice of ambrosia for the rest of your life.

Last is To Heart 2.  There's already a beta version of the game released, but there's no rush to read this while the translator is still hard at work improving on the release.  Once a final version is released, this ancient classic will correspondingly shoot up my priority list.  For now it can sit on the back burner.

Visual novel translations are notoriously slow and sporadic (ie, they tend to start, then stop, and leave incomplete translations behind like D-day corpses on the beach.)  But even so, each and every visual novel takes so long to read that it's hard to actually conquer the backlog and ever be up to date anyway.  Since readers take just as long to read translations as writers take to write them, a weird equilibrium is reached and both sides can just enjoy themselves without fear of ever running out of work to do.

The visual novel to look forward to being translated most is Da Capo III.  It'll probably come out this year.  If not this year, then surely next year.  There's no way I'll have finished all ten of these visual novels before Da Capo III arrives, so there's no way I'll ever run out of productive stuff to do.  Other visual novels to look forward to coming out soon include Muv-Luv, Rewrite: Harvest Festa, and the Labyrinth of Grisaia.

Supposedly I should be reading older classics like Sharin no Kuni, G Senjou no Maou, and Ever17.  But who on Earth has time for those when I can't even clear out my original backlog?

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