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Sunday, February 19, 2017

Muv-Luv Available:

A fan translation of Muv-Luv (Extra + Unlimited) was made long ago, but for whatever reason it never actually ran properly.  Zoom forward many years, and the game was released officially on steam, but that version was censored from its original Japanese version.

Finally we have the best of both worlds.  The uncensored Muv-Luv, that still retains the higher graphics and extra content from the PS3 version, and actually runs on modern computers.  It can now be fetched over at eroge download.

Muv-Luv Alternative, the sequel to this game, is heralded as 'the greatest visual novel ever' by scads of fans.  The only way to properly appreciate Alternative is to play this game first.  So if you want to play 'the greatest visual novel ever,' you're pretty much stuck playing both this game and the next.  Only after putting in that much effort is it even possible to gainsay what all the lovers say about it.  But wouldn't it be even better if what they said were true?  In that case, by listening to their advice, we just bagged one of the greatest treasures of mankind.

There are two hints that this will at least be a good game, though.  First, Kimi ga Nozomu Eien was a good anime, which serves as a sort of prequel/spinoff to Muv-Luv.  Second, Schwarzesmarken was a great anime, which serves as a sort of sequel/spinoff to Muv-Luv.  When so many good things orbit around the same good thing, odds are that one good thing is also good.

Even if I do get this game, there's no way I can play it, like, even this year. >.<.  I just finished Ricca's route in Da Capo III R, but the game still isn't even half done.  There's also Majikoi A-1 and A-2 to think about, plus Really? Really!, and the Grisaia short stories melody and afterglow.

Muv-Luv may well be worth playing, but all of the above visual novels are in my top ten favorite VN franchises of all time, so Muv-Luv will just have to wait.

Sadly, unlike Himeno and Sera, Ricca's route was boring.  I never felt truly connected to her as a lover, it was more like, why the heck are we together?  Plus, I didn't get to see any of the moments I was actually interested in, like Ricca realizing Sakura is our time traveled granddaughter back from the future, or planting the original wish granting tree at hatsujima island.  Maybe they're saving those scenes for later?  If so, it really left the main route lacking, so I can't say I approve.

Next up is Charles Maroth.  Hopefully the writing will live up to the quality of the music this time around.

Meanwhile, rewatching Naruto Shippuudden requires a great deal of skill.  The show is constantly darting into short flashbacks between its actual new material, so you have to constantly be ready to skip through them as each episode proceeds.  Most Naruto episodes are only 2/3 as long as they pretend to be as a result, or even shorter.  It's a very nefarious way to intersperse filler even inside the supposedly canon eps.  Hopefully Bolt simply won't have any filler, since it seems to be more of an anime original concept than a manga anyway, like Dragon Ball Super.  The original airing of Naruto was maddening with how much filler it had, and the rewatch is nearly as bad because of all these stupid needless flashbacks, but at least Bolt can escape all that and just tell a well paced story.  There are only three episodes left of Naruto Shippuuden, so a great deal of change is on the horizon.

Tales of Berseria is a mammoth sized game.  I've finally reached the last therion, but I feel like even this will only be the 'start' of my journey.  There isn't anything particularly wrong with the plot, but I feel like it could have been compressed into a higher fun density value than the finished product they decided upon.  It's probably better than Zestiria (at least the camera is!), but that's not saying much.  It's nothing compared to Xillia or Graces.  The Zestiria anime continues to be filler nonsense.

Sayaka may be the best girl in Majikoi.  I like all the earlier heroines, but they were all over the top, comical figures.  Sayaka seems like a girl you could date and love in real life.  As a result, Majikoi A-1 is off to a roaring good start.

Really? Really! has a weird feature where you play 'doubt' with various false statements said during the game.  I tried doing it on my own and failed, so I quickly got annoyed with the gimmick and just started following a walkthrough.  At least there's nothing wrong with the actual content of the game.  It's still full of lovable and funny characters + an interesting situation/setting, just like the previous two Shuffle universe games.

Chapterhouse Dune is terrible.  I'll finish it eventually, though, just to have the satisfaction of finally finishing this series.

The first Fate/Heaven's Feel movie is scheduled to air in September in Japan.  For the rest of the world, that means May or so of 2018 will be our first shot at it.  It feels like a long wait, but there's tons of other Fate material coming out this year already, so it's not a bad idea to spread things out a little longer.  Until Fate/Heaven's Feel is fully animated, there's no point reading the Hollow Ataraxia sequel visual novel.  I've had that VN in storage for years now, and it looks like it will stay in storage for years to come.  Someday, though, when I'm done with all the other visual novels out there, Ataraxia will definitely be of use!

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