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Old 02-16-2016, 08:53 PM
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Default Let's Grow a Rooftop Lily Garden! Kindred Spirits on the Roof!

Introduction, Pt. 1


So as you all know, I'm part of the Visual Novel problem here on this forum. I am the one to blame for the existence of a Sakura Spirit stream on this forum.

Which was, on the one hand, absolutely amazing. On the other hand, when I bought it, I had no ability to fathom just how trash it actually was.

Thankfully, the game we're playing is a lot better. It's a more professional game with a higher pedigree and has a lot more thought into it. It's currently the top game on Mangagamer's weekly ranking, and a whole bunch of my friends have been excited for it for a long time. As far as visual novels go, this is about as top shelf as they come. And there's a lot that makes it significant to me on a personal level as well as culturally. Let's start with --

- This game has lesbians in it! And only lesbians!

- Lesbians!

You'll have to forgive T-Rex here. This is practically a catchphrase for him now, and he gets excited. So excited he starts talking out of turn. But fine, before I get back to what I was saying, anything else you want to add?

- It's also the first VN to not be edited for content in its publication on Steam, only translated!

- I suspect that's related to how it's being billed as a "frank depiction of same-sex relationships". Which hopefully means they don't wind up all inexplicably drenched in "juices" at some point.

- What are the other big sellers on the site right now? "Cosplay Alien"? "Harem Party"? "Hypno-training My Mother and Sister?" Yeesh!

- Well even from the title it's pretty easy to tell this is a very different game from the rest of the stuff that's there. Although "Harem Party" has a nice ring to it...

- You say that, but you haven't seen the preview pics for that one.

- ...ANIME WAS A MISTAKE

OK, so now that's out of the way, let's discuss a few things about this project. I don't have the luxury of a skype crew, so instead I have to find some friends the sad nerd way, by adapting characters from comics I've read to add commentary to the playthrough. Don't worry, though, I won't be holding all of their commentary to the Dinosaur Comics structure. But I have to do this game by text rather than streaming, for a very obvious reason.

- This game has nudity in it!

That's right. Even if it's not as explicit as some of the other games being sold on that site right now, this game does indeed have content that would be considered work-unsafe in most circumstances. By making the LP text-only, I can edit the content so that you all can keep the forum pure and clean.

- I mean, if they can make an all-ages version of Nekopara, we can do a playthrough of this game that both stays coherent and doesn't include any of the naughty bits.

So I've been honking my horn tooting my whistle exploding with joy making a big fuss about this game on Twitter lately especially, and that's because it really fills a specific gap in my life is going to keep me busy for a while seems like the visual novel I'd been hoping for for years, even if I didn't fully realize it at the time

I think before I really get into the game I want to talk at least a little about the game, it's history, and its cultural significance. I don't want this discussion to turn into a full-on anatomy --

- Hey-ohh!

Dammit. Anyway, while I don't want to be quite as exhaustive or analytical as I have been in my discussion of Sonic, this is definitely a game that's so far afield from everything else in this forum that I ought to come up with some justification as to why you should care about it.

- As far as these things go, lesbian visual novels are a pretty underserved market. While the market for lesbian manga is driven primarily by women (who are also the ones making the majority of the work, especially original stories), when it comes to games, the otome game genre, as in narrative driven romance games made for women, has been designed primarily around romancing men, typically bishounen (pretty-boy) sorts of games. In both cases, this is a historical thing. The tradition of lesbian stories marketed for women in Japan dates back to the 1970s with stories like Our White Room (Shiroi Heya no Futari), but by the 90s, conventions for artists really built up a market for such works, and lots of speciality publications offer room for shorts stories and manga serialization. But otome games are pretty new in comparison, and not a "thing" before Koei's Angelique in 1994. While there are plenty of games like that out there, since it's relatively easy to make a dating sim, a lot of them still tend to be obscure. Consider that the market for women who want to romance other women is probably even smaller than that, and it's not too hard to see why these stories tend to stay in cheaper-to-produce manga.

- Yeah, but in the last several years it's been easier to find games like that.

- Sure, and it's also like these games didn't exist before now either. Liar-soft, the producers of this game, have made a lesbian visual novel before this. It even shares the same team lead, Toi Tentsu, and the game art is done by Koume Keito of Spice and Wolf fame. It's a mystery novel with branching paths. And yes, as is the case for everything by Liar-soft, there is plenty of erotic content. The problem is that with this game some of that erotic content is rape and I'm not particularly comfortable with that.

There's a review of the game by someone who goes by Mara (not our Mara, I asked) on Okazu, which is generally a good site for recommendations and reviews of girls-love stories. You ought to read it, but the basic summary of the game is that it takes place in a private girls' academy so posh that it's basically its own floating island. But a series of sexual assaults are taking place there, and the main character has to figure out what is happening before the culprit can escape -- in which case, for whatever reason because I haven't played the game, the school staff will blame her for it.

While I don't want to defend the content here, the sad thing is that for a small team making a game like this, a sexual assault narrative in the game is almost par for the course. The only other game I can know anything about that had all-female sexual content is Lightning Warrior Raidy, and that game has lots of distressed damsels and also lots of revenge-porn scenes -- it's more of a dungeon crawler than a visual novel, after all. Really, my point is more that there's very limited precedent for what a game like this might look like, so even if it's disappointing it's probably not surprising that it's what they came up with; it was a very early Liar title and might be considered a sophomore slump. They've since shaped up and made more interesting titles that, even if they push in the direction of weird themes are more thoughtful about how they present their stories. An expanded version of the game with bonus content tried to push a more upbeat style, away from the darker tones of the original plot.

- Even if the game wasn't very good, Toi Tentsu (known in some places as Toi Amatsu, which I assume is based on an incorrect reading of the kanji) has collaborated with Koume on lesbian filth more recently. There's a Kantai Collection doujinshi with their names on it that came out not so long ago, and it's more in the style of Koume's Pollen Girls series. That is to say, unapologetically lewd!

- While they might still push on the depressing or grim tones, most of Liar's games tend to be more thoughtful about their sex now. They still have content that might make people uncomfortable in some of their games -- too many of them seem to have the "lolicon" tag on vndb, for example -- but in general try to stay away from depicting traumatic sexuality. They don't shy away from drama, however. There's arguably a big schism in the company's output from before and after the publishing of Seiken no Inganock -- which set up a sort of universe and tone in which many of their creative works are set. Most of the tales focus on surviving in grim circumstance with fairly limited sexual content; all of them have a steampunk setting. The most recent game in this series, Gakhthun of the Golden Lightning, is availble in English right now. You play as Nikola Tesla and have to protect the lives of people living in -- guess what? -- an academy on an artificial island, surrounded by the ocean.

- Wait, does this Nikola Tesla get his motor running too? Because I thought...

While I can't comment on the extent of Gakhthun's Tesla sex scenes, I will also point out that vndb informs me that this universe actually begins with Souten No Celenaria, which as near as I can tell is basically a porn parody of Skies of Arcadia, and takes a much more comedic tone over the rest of the games in the series.

- But I don't know how relevant all of this is to this game! I think there's a way more relevant visual novel series that we need to discuss!

(Continued in Pt. 2 below...)
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Old 02-16-2016, 08:57 PM
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Introduction, Pt. 2

- It's interesting that the rise of lesbian manga took maybe about 20 years to reach a really sizable audience, because there's been an interesting lesbian visual novel series that started in 2006, closer to like 12 years since the first major otome games came out.

- That series is called "A Kiss for the Petals". Which is, well, a double-entendre.

- You see, this is a series that's what they call a "nukige". Which is probably short for "nookie" "game". It's all about sex! There's plot, but it's almost entirely to contextualize the sex scenes. And it's all girls!

Mangagamer and Steam have one game from the series out, and it's also the one that's designed for all ages (as in, no sex), Remembering How We Met. While I haven't played it, it's probably pretty good, since even if the games' plot is otherwise mostly used to string along sex scenes, it's still not done thoughtlessly. In fact, on the Mangagamer blog, the director has a multi-part series on how the game was conceived and made.

Part one, part two, part three, part four, part five, part six, part seven, and part eight.

- The summary is -- don't make it secretly about a boy, don't grow penises, and don't use toys!

- There's also another important note they have, which is to make it so that the people around the couples of interest are almost all girls, with the exception of a few family members; and also, make them supporting of the main characters' relationships, rather than suspicious or unaccepting of lesbianism. Not just girls loving girls: girls loving girls loving girls!

- I can certainly see why they would want to be conscious of the way the people around them treat the relationships. I'd rather a story try to stay away from negative sentiments about the relationship, even if it would make the work more true to real life. Even in the summary it reads as microaggressive, and the presence of that sort of dialogue certainly keeps me from being able to relax with the media I'm engaging with. It's the same sort of problem you might see with the way low-level enemies' dialogue dealt with Catwoman's gender. Parts of those ground rules sound unfriendly to trans women, but there are also a lot of stories (at least in manga) where those sorts of things happen, and sometimes seem to be done for the sake of authors and artists who can't seem to conceptualize the idea of sex between two people where neither one has a penis. In that regard, I'm glad they took up the creative challenge with the rules they did, though reading more detail about that reasoning puts me off.

- The games are short, and take maybe an hour or two to play through. But there are a lot of them. People really want their lesbian porn game series! Including the one already in English there are 15 main games, another 4 spinoff games, something like 14 light novels, 4 drama cds, and an anime OVA. Keeping track of it all...

- ...Well, it's ridiculously hard! And also difficult!

Jesus, T-Rex.

- The concept the games have, of a private girls' academy that serves as a lesbian paradise, is one that had some precedent. The most notable example of a story like this is probably Maria Watches Over Us, which was originally a light novel series starting in 1998 that became pretty big with manga and anime series adaptations starting in 2003 and 2004. It's a series that seems to represent high school romance in an authentic way, in that there's a lot of drama and tension that would be cleared up immediately if the characters knew how to express their feelings for each other. I still think I'd recommend it, but it's not what you'd turn to if you want an adult romance.

- Between the time frame and some of the specifics of the setting and characters, the Petals games especially start out feeling like the Cinemax porn parody version of Maria Watches. Character interactions can still feel pretty contrived, even if it's fun to see their feelings for each other develop over the course of the game. It's still definitely not a game selling itself on the strength of its narrative, and none of the games have what you'd think of as a branching narrative. It's really always a focus on a single couple.

- The game is apparently pretty popular outside of Japan, too. Not that it's hard to find people who are really rabid about getting to play games with teenage girls and sexual themes.

I think this is where one of us makes a snide comment about the variety of games available on Vita?

- The Petals games probably had a major influence on Liar-soft making this game. While this one is by accounts a significantly longer title -- Liar's games tend to sit in the 10-30 hour range for playthroughs -- it still has a lot of the same structure and feel, which you might have noticed if you've played some of the demo. It's still set in a high school, it focuses on about as many couples as the entire Petals series does over the course of its many games, and once again there really isn't a lot of branching to be had in the game. The tone of the series pushes a little more humorous than a lot of the other Liar games we've seen, and visually it matches with the lighter style and real-world settings of Petals. There's also the main conceit, which I don't want to get into before we even start the story, but which seems to be about finding ways to make the contrived scenarios in the Petals games feel a little more grounded and plausible.

- Plus, the nature of the relationship of the two characters in the first scenario of this game is built around a similar dynamic to the couple in the first game, to the point where the similarities really don't feel coincidental. I think that Petals had a significant influence on this game, to the point where this one almost certainly couldn't have existed if it didn't prove there was an audience for it. But given the similarity and the nature of opinions on the internet, I wouldn't be surprised if there was a Cola Wars-style dynamic over rival fandoms for this game and the Petals series, especially given the way the concept was so thoroughly appropriated. I guess if there's any real distinguishing factor, then, it's going to be in the way things are executed and your personal level of comfort over lots of explicit depictions of high schoolers having sex.

- Speaking of which, there is no sexual content in the Kindred Spirits demo.

Unofficial translations of the Petals games are out there if you're that interested in checking them out, but I definitely agree with the idea they're really not games you play for the plot. I certainly don't think a let's play of one of them would ever be in the cards for me. You'd basically be left with maybe a fifth of the game, and these are already quite short games to begin with.

They're still better than Sakura Spirit, though. For one thing they don't pussyfoot around play wink-and-nudge with sexual themes in a puerile manner the way Sakura Spirit does, and aren't trying as hard to appeal to inane fetishes. No foxgirls tripping into the vat of chocolate.

Relative to its contemporary peers, the art in this game is pretty restrained. It's by an artist by the name of Peg (or, sometimes, Peggy), whose works are mind-blowingly difficult to find. But I started following her on Pixiv probably around the same time the game came out in Japan, early 2012, likely from some art in the game becoming popular. Of course, not knowing much Japanese I didn't realize that she was doing art for a girls' love visual novel; by the time the game was announced last year I wouldn't have even remembered it as a thing. But, honestly, she's done some of my favorite art on Pixiv, and so I'm sorta happy in a bewildered way that it's her art that's in the first unedited Steam VN release. Sort of the way you might feel to find your favorite band on the radio and everyone you know who listens winds up liking the song too.

I'd like to tell you more about Peg's work, but there just isn't much to point to outside of this series: illustrations for two light novels and four drama CD spinoffs. There's also a little more art for the packaging of some manga spinoffs, but not the art for the mangas themselves, which were done by other artists who do more longform work on the regular. Given the lack of any public persona and a fairly small body of work, I'm left unable to figure out just how she wound up working on the project in the first place, but I'm certainly glad that it happened. I'm also happy enough to leave it there, because even one stalker of Japanese gamedevs is one too many.

I think I'm starting to near the character limit of part two here, so I think this is as good a place to sign up. I think we've learned a lot here about visual novels, romantic manga, and the culture surrounding them.

- You also learned probably way more than you ever wanted about my porn reading habits! So thanks for sticking this far in.

- That's the phrasing you chose?

- Yes, please end this post now.

Next time we'll actually get into this game! Won't that be fun?
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Old 02-17-2016, 10:30 AM
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Originally Posted by muteKi View Post
But I have to do this game by text rather than streaming, for a very obvious reason.

- This game has nudity in it!
pfft, just photoshop flowers over the explicit bits, it'll be fine, probably
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Old 02-18-2016, 02:24 PM
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Thankfully, I have the perfect replacement image
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Old 02-20-2016, 03:49 PM
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So because there's a limit on the number of pictures possible in a single post, in order to keep this moving along, from now on I'll be replacing the emoticons of trex, utahraptor, and dromiceiomimus with :trex:, :utah:, and :drom:. Easy enough, saves me room for more screenshots from the game in each post so people don't complain I'm inflating my post count, and everyone's happy. Anyway. Let's get on with this.

Part One: Candy is Dandy but Ecto is Cooler

:trex: - Oh boy, time to finally journey into the game! I hope everyone's ready for this!

:trex: - I came prepared. I did my reading!



:drom: - You really can tell that was written right before the Summer of Love happened, huh? "The Homosexual Fear of Normal Sex". I can only wonder what they mean by "three lesbian techniques" though.

:utah: - I kinda want to see someone adapt that cover into an actual lesbian story anthology. It's so ripe for exploitation.

:trex: - Maybe even... sexploitation?

:utah: - Honestly, though, that cover art is incredibly on point. It's the sort of thing that clearly influenced the visual style of the girls' love manga targeted to female audiences.

:trex: - Yeah! You can probably even connect it to modern arists like Takemiya Jin. Cool to think about!

:trex: - Anyway, let's get into the first chapter of this thing! Let's meet the lesbian(s)!

So when you launch the game, it starts out with a video sequence, with a youtube upload conveniently subtitled:



The song is by a group called Blueberry & Yogurt, who are a music and sound duo who have done a lot of work for visual novel companies like Liar-soft. If they're not doing all the music, they're at least doing the intro and outro. Plus, the singer, Rita, is also the voice actress of one of these characters -- she's done a lot of work as a voice actress for erotic VNs like these, actually.

:utah: - As you can see, there's not a lot of actual animation to point out here. Mostly it's just a scroll as we get introduced to some of the characters and the actresses who are voicing them. If you look closely you'll notice that this game has a lot of voice actress doubling.

:drom: - Even if this is a game that has been getting a lot of press lately, the production value going into one of these games is still pretty small, especially in comparison to the size of the games industry as a field. You might see a title on Steam someday that has a much more animated opening, but this is typically what they look like.

:utah: - While the intro video isn't part of the demo, everything used in that video either shows up there or on the promotional website -- which includes a couple screenshots that are not worksafe.

:drom: - I don't know that I want to get into it right now but there are a few things I'm seeing here that concern me.

:trex: - I still hope in my heart of hearts that the trio actually has a threesome together.

:utah: - (Yeah, you would...) Don't bet on it!

It's not important, but I think the "Liar-Soft 30th" thing is because this is the 30th piece of software they've released. The studio is only like 17 years old.



So after the intro video there's this screen.

:utah: - Does anyone actually pay attention to these screens? "All characters or any human-like representation of characters... are 18 years of age or older". I guess they have to say that, don't they?

:drom: - Yeah, given that these are supposed to be high school kids, I really doubt that they've been held back from school for like 3 years.




After that is the title screen. There's intro text that's slightly different for each character. It's also got voice clips! I believe they're all in the demo, so if you really want to catch every one you can just keep opening and closing the demo version, which doesn't have the intro or the nag screen. It's pretty cute, but they might not make a lot of sense until you've learned all the characters.

:trex: - The original Japanese name, "Okujou no Yurirei-san" is a pun! "Okujou" means "roof", sure, but "Yurirei" is a portmanteau of "yuurei", which basically means ghosts (lit: "faint" "spirit" from its components), and of course, "yuri". We never did define "yuri", did we?

No, we did not. I'm trying to make this LP parsable to people who have limited knowledge of Japanese, so I didn't want to get bogged down in specific terminology and instead want to keep this as parsable in English as possible. But I guess it helps us understand the name, so let's keep going.

:utah: - I know this one! Back in the 70s, around the same time White Room was published, the first commercially gay male lifestyle magazine came out in Japan, called Barazoku, "bara" being the word for roses and used in reference to imagery used in Greek myths of Laius of Thebes.

:trex: - Laius was the father of Oedipus, who also inspired genres of visual novels!

:utah: - The magazine sometimes had female readers and commenters. They were mentioned in the magazine as "yurizoku", based on "yuri", which is the Japanese word for lily.

Hence the joke in the thread title.

:trex: - The rule of thumb for etymology: People were probably saying it before hand, but we gotta go by when it was recorded. So this is the first recorded term of the word "yuri" in a gay context.

:utah: - Now, not all the ladies who were writing in to the magazine were gay themselves, but enough were so combined with the more general-audience focus of the magazine the designation stuck.

:drom: - "Kindred spirits" isn't a perfect take on representing it, but it's a term of endearment that, given "spirit" being used to refer to ghosts, makes sense. That said, it definitely leans a little more on the idea of a "yuri" story as being about deepening about emotional bonds between women that may or may not be romantic (but usually winds up that way) than on the idea of this being an erotic story.

:utah: - The reports I've seen from people who have played through the full game have gotten put the first sex scene at like 15 hours in? I think it's a fair title. In any case, I don't think I can come up with a way to maintain that pun in English, so it's OK.

Let's begin. I'd post the appropriate BGM here, but it's hard to find soundtrack rips on Youtube and I don't want to do it myself. The song's a light and jaunty little guitar tune called "My Territory". It's in the demo if you want to hear it.



Quote:
Another beautiful day.

After the end of the holidays, the air up on the roof had started to feel like summer.

The sun was high in the sky, almost annoying in how vigorously it shined. I was already finding my vest stuffy even though we'd only just changed into our spring uniforms.

But we were above the town and I was on the roof. Up here the breeze was cool and comfortable.

I finished off the soup in my little thermos and sighed, relieved that I'd been correct to pack a warm meal for lunch.

My hands habitually moved to clean up the rest of my food. I closed the lid of my small, two-tiered lunch box and wrapped it up in the scarf on my lap.

Gathering the bundle, I set my items down on the bench next to me.

Then I stood.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Phew...
While you'll soon find out why I don't want to call her a "point-of-view" character, Yuna here is the character developed most with the intention of relating with the audience. She's characterized as quiet and asocial. Rooftops are implied to be one of the quieter places someone can go in one of these school-drama stories to have lunch, so it's not surprising Yuna tends to hang out up here.

Also, I'm going to use the "quote-by-name" tag feature to distinguish between lines designed to be spoken out loud by a specific character, whereas internal dialogue will have quotes that aren't identified to a specific person.

Quote:
I, Toomi Yuna, propped my elbows against the roof fense and sighed as I always did. Sighed as if my lunch had perfectly filled my stomach and pushed out my breath.

I was careful not to lean too far. The students who come up to the roof are asked not to rest against the fence, but the barrier, only a meter high, tempts you to relax on it and look out over the scenery.

The bottom of half of my view was a townscape; the top half, a shining blue sky. At my eye level were the mountains surrounding the area. Silhouettes on the horizon.

I could clearly see the summits of the mountains, their peaks sharp against the cloudless sky. The weather really was nice.
I dunno about "cloudless" there, Yuna. You may want to look behind you.

Quote:
I could hear the voices of the other students on the roof from behind me, though their words were lost amid the sounds of lunch.

If they were speaking, it meant... they must have come up here with someone.

The roof seemed more popular than usual today.

The first-years who had started school a month ago were probably getting used to things by now.

They'd probably noticed that the roof is the perfect place to eat on days with nice weather like today.

I had thought that the population up here would rise quickly, but that hadn't proved true. Maybe because we'd been on break. They were probably in their classrooms with friends, discussing all they'd done over the holidays.

Strangely, it seems to be mostly single people or groups of two who come to the roof. There aren't many groups with three or more.

Maybe with larger groups it's just more likely that one person won't want to eat up here. Maybe it's too much trouble to climb all the way up when you have too many with you.

As for the groups of two... Well, I get that. It sort of feels like a picnic when you eat up here on the roof. I imagine it starts when one of them asks, and the other thinks it sounds fun and goes along.

The people who came to the roof alone... may have friends who just happened to be absent today.

Either that, or they don't like eating alone in their classroom. ...Like me.

Like me. Anxious in the classroom. Too many people there. Friends, classmates, people who would talk to you, and all of the prying eyes.
:utah: - I like that just thinking about it seems to impact her thought patterns. Instead of more thoughtful, complete sentences we get sharper, quicker beats!

Quote:
There's just too much going on there.

That's why I come to the roof during lunch. I come to a place with a few people as possible, and after eating I look out at the scenery.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
(I wonder... if the burdock root was a little too salty...)
Quote:
I muttered quietly to myself
As a note, not everything voiced out by a character is accompanied by a correpsonding (Japanese) voice clip, but everything so far has. The more important scenes and interactions tend to have more voicing. Internal dialogue is never voiced.

:drom: - I wouldn't be surprised if there's a moment where a voice clip is used to identify a character as accidentally voicing a thought out loud.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
(I thought Hina would enjoy it after her morning practice, at least. She'll probably work up a sweat again today.)
:trex: - Electrolytes!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
(I didn't put that much burdock in it, so I doubt she minded. Well, it's not like she usually leaves much anyway.)

(The weather really is nice today. The sunlight's really pouring down.)

(It was a good idea to wear sunscreen today. I should make sure Hina protects her skin, too. She never gives that sort of thing any thought.)

(Oh... Maybe that's why there aren't too many people up here today...)

(...Whatever trifling thoughts pass through my mind, huh...)
Quote:
I thought about all sorts of things as I stared out absentmindedly at the view. Thought? No, things were just coming to mind, really. And it always ends with this line from an old classic.
:trex: - "He had won the victory over himself. He loved big brother!"

:trex: - "Winston's voice swelled forth. 'Onii-chan!'"

:utah: - "..."

:drom: - "..."

ANYWAY, moving on:

Quote:
The phrase always pops into my head, and as a habit, I always bring my attention back from the scenery when it does.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
(I feel like an old lady... though Sonou-sensei the literature teacher would probably object to that idea.)


Quote:
This time I leaned with my back against the fence. This was also forbidden by the teachers, but no one paid that rule any mind.

If they're really that afraid of accidents, they should build a taller fence.

But their warnings aren't without reason, and I didn't need to deliberately ignore them. I picked myself up off the fence and sat back down on the bench I'd been using earlier.
:utah: - Is this... foreshadowing?

Quote:
My hands found their way to my pockets. One of my fingertips ran across a small package, reminding me to take it out.

It was something Ano had given me as I'd left the classroom. She'd laughed, calling it a "highly recommended new product".

I looked it over and found on the packaging, "Brown Sugar Lotus Root Lozenge"...? Well, she did say it was tasty...
You can get a 7 oz bag of these online, if you want to try them yourself. I can't say I've ever tried it myself though, so I can't speak to their quality as candy or medicine.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
(The fact that there's more to it than taste is just like Ano, I suppose...)
:trex: - Edibles! It's 4:20 somewhere!

Quote:
I would understand if it was supposed to be flavored with the fragrance of lotus, but why put lotus root in it? And a lozenge? I haven't heard anything about lotus root being good for the throat.
Imagine me doing that look at the camera that they do on Parks and Rec.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
(Well, it's probably sweet, at least.)
Quote:
I took it out of the paper to find it was an inky black. Rolling it around in my hand for a moment, I tossed it into my mouth...
A new song starts playing here. It's a tense, electric-guitar driven sort of song called "ClashingXSwords"

Quote:
Originally Posted by ???
You fool!
Quote:
Originally Posted by ????
What drives you to such lengths?!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Ngh?!
:utah: - Thank heaven for quote tags!

Quote:
I almost swallowed the thing, I was so surprised by the voices suddenly at my ear.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ???
What are you thinking?! Taking poison on such a nice, sunny day?!
Quote:
Originally Posted by ????
You mustn't hurry to your death! Surely you have many things to look forward to!
Quote:
What? What, what, what, what?

I heard voices from behind me. Who were they? I could hear two of them. When did they get back there?!
Quote:
Originally Posted by ???
Something awful must have happened to you... But you can't just toss aside your life like that!
Quote:
Originally Posted by ???
What sort of awful thing happened to you, I wonder... to make you swallow such a dark black poison...
Quote:
No, seriously, what?! Poison? What I just swallowed? No, wait a second...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ???
Poison... It must be a terrible way to go. Feeling sick, but unable to cough up the toxin...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ????
If you have troubles, I'd gladly listen to them. And if that eases your burden at all, please, rethink this...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ???
Then your body starts to numb and you fall to the floor, and everything goes dark before your eyes...
Quote:
Originally Posted by ????
What are you worried about? Is it love? It must be. You've fallen in love with some girl, haven't you? It must be so painful not knowing what to do...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
No, no! This is just...can...
Quote:
I said, turning around...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
...dy...
Quote:
I lost my words.
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  #6  
Old 02-20-2016, 03:52 PM
muteKi's Avatar
muteKi muteKi is offline
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New song, this time it's a sweet little piano tune with backing strings. The Westminster chimes pattern is featured in it. It's called, oddly enough, "Kindred Spirits".

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
It's just... a candy... not... poison...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in White Sailor Uniform, previously identified as "???"
...Pfft, aha ahahahaha! We know that, silly!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform, previously identified as "????"
Heheh, we're sorry. It looks like you were more surprised than we expected.
Quote:
Two girls... wearing uniforms I didn't recognize. No, one looked more like a "woman" than a girl...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in White Sailor Uniform
Oh, we were just teasing you! I mean, that black candy looked just like poison, don't you think?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform
It really was pitch black. Is that sort of thing popular lately? I seem to see it nowadays. What flavor is it?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Huh...? U-umm... It's sweet, but it's got brown sugar in it, so it's sort of a light flavor. The lotus root isn't very bitter...
Quote:
Er, what exactly am I answering for?
Imagine me doing that look at the camera that they do on Parks and Rec once again, then cutting away to the bit in Community where they make fun of that television format.

:trex: - I don't mind having the inner monologue guide our interpretation of what's happening, but it does work a little better when the character's thoughts are more complicated than just "Why?"

:utah: - "I, the editor, could ask you the very same question!" is what more people need to think when they write stories. I'm just saying!



Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in White Sailor Uniform
Brown sugar comes from sugarcane, right? Ah, it must taste like kuromitsu!
:trex: - That's a sort of brown sugar syurp similar to molasses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform
There's lotus root in it? How peculiar.
Quote:
One was a bit of an uncouth girl in a white sailor uniform who looked about my age. Her hair was light brown, though it didn't look dyed.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
There are a lot of strange combinations like these... It's what makes new flavors stand out, I guess...
As I'm typing this, I'm chewing on a fish candy that's been flavored with ammonium chloride and liquorice extract right now. I can't judge on strange in this instance, given that most people I know don't actually like that sort of thing. So who knows if I'd enjoy the lotus root candy. Maybe.

Quote:
The other one wore a typical sailor uniform, with hair long and as black as her clothes. She looked even more grown-up than a third-year upperclassman.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform
Would you mind sharing one? Heheh, just kidding. It's not like we could...

Taste... It...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in White Sailor Uniform
What is it, Sachi-san? ...!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
..........
:trex: So many ellipses, it's like we're playing a game of pac-man!

Quote:
Wh-what's going on? They've suddenly gone quiet. It was only one piece, so I couldn't have split it anyway... No, that's not it.

Why are they suddenly staring at me? They were just laughing a second ago...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform
..........
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in White Sailor Uniform
..........
Quote:
They were laughing before my eyes...
Before my eyes... Right, before my eyes.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform
You...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Huh? Uh, yes...?
Quote:
Before my eyes was...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform
...Can see us?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Y-yes...
Quote:
I had the bench to my back, so when I turned around, I should have seen nothing but the fence at the edge of the roof.
:utah: - Are we sure that candy doesn't have any hallucinogens in it?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in White Sailor Uniform
Our voices... You can...

...Hear our voices?!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Y-eah...
Quote:
The two of them were standing there...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in White Sailor Uniform
Sachi-san!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform
Yes, Megumi!
Finally, some names for these two. I tell you what, "Girl in [color] sailor uniform" is a lot to type out every single time one of them says something.

That's why I've been using copy-and-paste. Anyway, it's still a hassle.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in White Sailor Uniform, identified as Megumi by the other
There's someone who can hear our voices! There's someone who can see us!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform, identified as Sachi by the other
Yes!
Music: ClashingXSwords

Quote:
In the tiny space between the bench and the fence...? No, the space isn't wide enough for anyone to stand there.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Megumi, which is so much easier to type
H-hey, could it be...?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sachi, god this is much better
Yes it is... We've finally done it!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Megumi
Wow, yaaaay!
Quote:
I don't know why, but I feel like I can somehow see the fence right through the happy pair.


The picture has changed slightly and now the two girls appear a little bit translucent. So GEE I WONDER WHY.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Megumi
H-hey, you...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sachi
You hear our voices, don't you? Then...
Quote:
The roof of the three-story Hoshikan building... They're on the edge of the roof, ten meters from the ground, without fear, not even touching the fence!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sachi
We have...
Quote:
Standing there... almost as if they're floating in the air... They're...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Megumi
A favor...
Quote:
Faintly transparent... I can see the mountains through them... I can see... I can see them!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sachi
We'd like to ask...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Ah... --! ------!
Quote:
I desperately held down the scream that threatened to escape my lips, grabbed my lunch bag, and took off running toward the door to the stairs.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sachi
Of you-- Ah, wait!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Megumi
Aaah! Where are you going?!
Quote:
"Where"?! I'm running away from here, of course!
Door slam, fade to black.

:trex: - Well, gee, let me remember that the next time someone offers me a Japanese candy!

:utah: - Like, zoinks, Scoob!

:drom: - My glasses! I can't see without my glasses!

We've been going at it for a while This first part is starting to get really long, so, OK gang, let's split up.
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  #7  
Old 02-21-2016, 09:12 PM
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Mightyblue Mightyblue is offline
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Location: Somewhere cold. And frosty.
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Just a tip, you should use irfanview for taking screenshots like that. You can set it up to only screenshot the active window (minus border), and it'll autosave each snap according to the file path and naming scheme you set up in irfanview itself.
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  #8  
Old 02-21-2016, 09:40 PM
muteKi's Avatar
muteKi muteKi is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Green chile cheeseburger capital of the world
Posts: 8,460
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Ah, thank you. I'll probably go back over these screenshots at some point, but since the Steam overlay and this game don't seem to mesh together properly, that's probably the best option I have. Plus, it's already installed on this laptop!
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  #9  
Old 02-27-2016, 09:12 PM
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muteKi muteKi is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Location: Green chile cheeseburger capital of the world
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Part Two: Blackboards in Porn



:trex: - Since the last episode, I got to thinking, and I realized something. Those ghosts didn't know Yuna could hear them when they started talking!

:trex: - They were doing a haunted version of Mystery Science Theater!

:drom: - Do you think that's how they cope with death? Joking that the people they encounter might be about to join them? It's a bit morbid but who's going to hear them?

:utah: - This sort of humor is pretty common among people who deal with death all the time! Doctors definitely use that sort of humor to cope with the misery of being surrounded by dying people.

:trex: - Oooh, good point! But because doctors have, like, human flesh and vocal folds, people can hear them! So they need to be careful about when and where they make those jokes.

:utah: - Yeah, there is a malpractice precedent for doctors who insult their patients. One in Virginia got awarded $500,000 in a lawsuit.

:trex: - It definitely pays to be careful about your jokes!

Thank you for joining us for another episode of Advice for Doctors

When we last left off, Yuna had run off the roof in fright and slammed the door behind her, returning to her classroom.

(BGM is Shirojo again)



Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
Oh, Yuna, Welcome back~
Quote:
Ano Fuji called out to me as I entered the classroom and headed back to my seat.

She's a friend I made after starting school here and, not counting Hina, one of the few I can be myself with.

Ano always greets me when I return to class. She's friendly but not so friendly that she pesters me about eating alone.

She has some bad habits, but I find them a little endearing, actually.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
You took your time today, huh? Were you napping?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Y-yeah, I might have...
Quote:
Yeah, that's right. I must have dozed off and had a weird dream.
:trex: - Well, either that or there was something in that candy besides lotus root!



Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
Whoa, Yuna, you're, like, sweating buckets! Were you rushing to get back? There's still a bit of time, you know.

Wait, what's wrong? You're white as a sheet, Yuna.
:utah: - "It's because I stay inside and keep to myself most the time!"



Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Huh?
Quote:
"White as a sheet"? Am I? Noticeably?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
Did... something happen on the roof?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Huh? Oh, no...
Quote:
What should I tell her? Should I tell her I had a weird dream?

"I dozed off and dreamed that I met some ghosts"... but she might be creeped out if I said that.

I might prefer if both of us could be creeped out together, though. No, Ano might just laught it off. She's carefree like that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
I just... had a bit of a weird...
Quote:
But before I could say "dream", the bell signaling the beginning of afternoon class rang. The bell? Already? When did this happen?
:trex: - I'm pretty sure time-dilation candy is buyable in Colorado and parts of California. Just saying.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
No, it's nothing. Hurry back to your seat, Ano.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
O-okay... Yuna, go to the nurse's office if you start feeling bad, okay?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
I'm fine.
Quote:
With an unconvincing chuckle, I waved Ano off and she sat back at her seat.
:drom: - I'm surprised that Yuna doesn't want to spend more time with Fuji. Even if she is a little goofy, she does seem to be genuinely concerned for Yuna.

:utah: - Plus, if I gave someone some bitter candy, I'd probably want to stay around to see the reaction when they put it in their mouth!

:trex: - Yeah, I'm a little surprised that she didn't ask about the candy when Yuna came back down, even if it's just in a "Was there something wrong with the one I gave you?" sort of thing.

:utah: - Lotus root has a history of being used as a medicine. While I don't know a lot about it, it's apparently got a history of being used to keep blood pressure low, so I might be a little worried that Yuna's got some circulation issues or similar that the candy just made worse enough to make her sick.

:trex: - Despite the fact that so-called naturopathic medicines are often ineffective as treatments for specific ailments, they can still interact with medications in ways that are difficult to predict or can be harmful to a patient, so it's important to get information on any sort of supplements they might be taking, even if they seem harmless.

Thank you for joining us for another episode of Advice for Doctors

:drom: - Even so, if you got that lotus root candy from the link in the previous update, you probably wouldn't get sick like that from it, unless you already have abnormally low blood pressure. Don't freak out about this sort of thing.

Fade out/in. Same music.



Quote:
Our first afternoon class began.

Somehow I'd composed myself, possibly thanks to Ano's encouragement, and was able to focus on class a little.

The teacher's words weren't getting through to me, but I was at least able to copy down the notes on the blackboard.

My mind wandered as my hand took notes...

The only conclusion is that it was a dream

It's not as though I could say with absolute certainty that ghosts don't exist, but I couldn't possibly have seen some myself.
:trex: - The Truth Is Out There!™

Quote:
That's why it must have been a dream. I must have dozed off. I was just confused when I woke up and took off running. I'm glad I didn't tell Ano. If I'd gone on like that, Iprobably wouldn't have been able to pretent it was just a dream. No, it was just a dream, so I wouldn't have had to pretend anything...

Oh, whatever. I should concentrate on class.

I looked back at the blackboard.

And at that moment... I heard...
(The BGM cuts out here)

Quote:
Originally Posted by ???
Found you.
Quote:
...A faint voice just next to my ear.
Sadly, no, this doesn't use that weird voice-acting ear microphone. It's just a normal voice clip with no weirdness going on. Would have been delightfully creepy if it were, but there aren't a whole lot of other places in the game where that sort of recording would make sense.

BGM: ClashingXSwords



Quote:
Red letters had appeared on the blackboard.
:utah: - Oh no! It's the ghost of lonelygirl15!

:drom: - This week on "Cute Or Horrifying?" we examine Nyaruko-chan, ketchup-based calligraphy, and dwarf kittens!

:trex: - But first: How to talk to your kid about why their pet guinea pig is comitting infanticide!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Eek!
Quote:
The teacher hadn't written them.

I mean, they weren't her neat handwriting. They were round, girlish letters, and not in chalk white but a vibrant red...

...dripping from the edges like wet paint.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
... ...
It's difficult to convey the sound of panic breathing, but that's what the voice clip here sounds like.

Quote:
I heard a clattering sound in my head. Oh, that's my teeth... And while the noise shook me...


Each bit of writing on the blackboard is voiced, by the way.

:trex: - Bunny Suicides: The After Years?

Quote:
The words were re-written, with no eraser in sight. They faded gradually and new words rose to take their place.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Eek!
Quote:
I finally screamed and jolted hard enough for my seat to make noise.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teacher
Huh, who was that? Toomi-san? What is it?
Quote:
The teacher who'd been writing on the blackboard turned around and started at me. I was already halfway out of my seat.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teacher
Did I get something wrong?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Ah... Sensei, that...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teacher
Hm? What is it?
Quote:
The teacher turned back to the blackboard. She tilted her head and looked at the area I was pointing at. She was looking, wasn't she? Couldn't she...

Hadn't anyone else noticed?!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teacher
Nothing's wrong, is it?
Quote:
The teacher... everyone around me... no one had noticed. Even though the words loomed on the blackboard. Bright red words, as if they'd been written in blood.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Ah... ah...
Quote:
That was when I realized. I was the only one who could see them.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teacher
Do you have a question about something?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Ah... er... erm...
Quote:
I desperately turned the cogs in my mind. I had no idea what to do anymore.

On the other hand, the fact that only I could see the words was just a tiny bit comforting. It meant that I was the only one who was crazy here.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Um... I'm sorry... A-A bug or something flew by in front of my face... It just scared me...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Teacher
Huh? O-Oh is that what happened? I undesrtand that you were surprised, but please try to keep your voice down, alright?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Yes... I'm sorry.
Quote:
I sunk back into my chair as the room filled with quiet giggles. Normally my face would be turning crimson with embarrassment, but I was too preoccupied to care.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
Hey, Yuna, you okay?
Quote:
Ano turned around from her seat diagonally in front of me. She hadn't laughed at my sudden outburst. Instead her face and voice contained genuine concern.
:trex: - Given what Fuji heard from Yuna earlier, I wouldn't be surprised if she suspected that Yuna was suffering a migraine or something similar. Some of what we heard from could be consistent with a minor zinc deficiency, which could be fixable with changes to her diet. They might also be stress-triggered, or the result of sinusitis!

Thank you for joining us for another episode of Advice for Doctors

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Uh, y-yeah. A-Ahaha, what a stupid thing to do...
Quote:
I tried feebly to laugh it off again. Insisiting there were words on the blackboard that only I could see would only make people laugh at me or think I was crazy.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
Are you feeling okay? Want to go to the nurse's office? I'll come with.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
I'm fine, I'm fine. I was just a little surprised.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
If you say so...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Really, I'm fine. Thank you.
Quote:
I was a little relieved when Ano turned back around. I looked back to the blackboard as well, hoping that what I'd seen had just been a hallucination.

But...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
.........
:drom: - Maybe it's Pac-Man fever?

:trex: - She's goin' outta her mind!

:utah: - Note: Pac-Man fever is not a genuine diagnosis and merely the name of a song from 1982 album by Buckner and Garcia. Do not take this joke as a legitimate medical diagnosis.

Quote:
It wasn't. And now new words had appeared on the board. I wasn't as alarmed as I'd been the first time, and though it was still creepy, the letters were a bit too cute to really be scary.

Do they have to drip like that, though...?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
(...What exactly are they planning to do...?)
Fade out to the classroom background from before. Shirojo is playing as BGM again.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Haahh...
Quote:
When the bell signaling the end of sixth period rang, I sighed and put my head in my hands, my elbows resting on my desk.

It was a wretched final two periods after lunch. The mysterious blood writing continued popping up endlessly the whole time.

On the blackboard. And, in the end, it even showed up in my notebook too.

The only reason I wasn't already collapsed on the desk was because the writing was now painted across the pages.

Even though the writing was splashed across it, I could still copy things down from the blackboard. And when I timidly pressed a finger to the letters, it came away clean.

So it wasn't as though I would get blood all over my face if I laid my head down, but I wasn't exactly eager to do it.

So I just covered my face to avoid looking at anything.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
Yuna, you okay?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Oh, Ano. Yeah, I'm okay, I'm fine.
Quote:
And I was fine. I had gotten used to it. I'd been surprised again when the writing had also appeared on my notebook, but I had gotten used to that, too. Though it was still creepy.

After two periods I was almost able to laugh at it. I'd found myself about to write "buzz off!" in my notebook in response.

Am I actually pretty bold?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
Wanna head straight home now that school's over? It kinda seems like it would be for the best today.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Mm...
Quote:
I wanted nothing more than that, really, but they'd been summoning me continuously for hours. If I just ignored them and went home, who knows what would happen to me.

They'd said they would curse me, though I wasn't sure exactly what that meant.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Sorry, I've got something I have to do today.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
Really...? Sure you don't want to go home and rest...?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
I thought I might have been a little sick during lunch, but it turned out to be nothing. I'm okay, really. Thank you.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ano Fuji
Sure you're sure? If you say so, then.
Quote:
Ano knows I don't like people hanging around me too much at school, and yet she was still that concerned for me.

I felt bad for worrying her so much about something she couldn't see.
This next bit is in red text, (presumably part of the ghostly blood writing in her notebook):

Quote:
Originally Posted by CURSE_TXT
Hurry up and come back when homeroom ends, ok? if you go home, i'll curse you?
If the character at the end isn't showing up, it's supposed to be a star.

Quote:
The message was written clearly on the pages of my notebook. Yes, yes, I understand.
:drom: - I think now's a good time to link this lovely piece from Jenn Frank, which I think we have to deal with evetually when discussing enjoying a sex game about high-school girls. There's a lot in here but I want to get at some of the bits discussing the horror genre in here, particularly because this last segment is playing up the horror angle a bit, even if the game is working toward a more humorous and sentimental tone overall. There's also a related piece by Gita Jackson that works into what I want to get at here.

:drom: - If you don't want to get into it, the basic argument I want to expand on from those articles is this: one of the reasons the horror genre is successful is that it discusses themes are that explicitly feminist, or at least feminist-adjacent. Serving as a way to voice fears that our society instills in women -- or as a way to discuss a cultural fear of the power of women as well. Even if horror regularly engages with ideas that are creepy and gross, it's (ideally, at least) done in a way that recognizes and doesn't minimize harm in our society.

:drom: - This makes a little more sense if you've already played through the demo, but it's not too hard to get at my argument just from where we've been going with themes. And so, could there be any sort of feminist messages hiding in the horror themes of this part of the game? They're subtle, but I think they're there.

:drom: - Again, this argument is going to make a bit more sense once we get into the next sections of the game. If you haven't played the demo yet, I'm going to make another strong suggestion that you do so. It's free, it's easy to get running, and it's still several hours worth of game.

:drom: - So Yuna is a loner, maybe even socially anxious. That's our starting point, and one of the parts of her characterization that's been elaborated on pretty consistently so far. Even so, she obviously has characters who care about her like Fuji, and there was mention of a Hina in the previous update whom Yuna is taking care of in some capacity. So it's not as though she's, strictly speaking, alone, but there's some trust issues here that keep her from relying on her friends for support.

:drom: - What if one of the reasons Yuna's worried about relying on her friends is that she's worried they might only see her as a romantic/sexual object?

:trex: - I know when you're oozing with as much sex appeal as I am, that it's a very real fear! Heh, heh. Yeah.

:utah: - Please, T-Rex. Let's be at least a little serious about this.

:drom: - And this isn't an unprecedented fear. The modern day right-wing hate movement is built around this sort of phenomenon: finding women who are just popular enough to have an audience but not popular enough to actually be able to leverage that into some form of protection. A drive to make them acceptable targets under the assumption that this fame is somehow equatable with success or stability, which is untrue -- the dark side of the democratizing forces of the internet.

:drom: - There's a feedback loop that happens. Women become popular online, and start attracting a crowd of people who wish do nothing but spew hate at them. These haters become part of the engagement driving the targets' popularity, engendering more hate. There are few to no ways to escape this phenomenon but to leave the internet, which is terrible for women for whom it's necessary to do their jobs or find work in the first place.

:drom: - And it's certainly even worse when the reason that this hatred happens is "because you're pretty". This is a problem that's been scourging cons for well over a decade and maybe only recently is starting to actually be addressed in a halfway-competent manner. Especially because so much of what gets considered "pretty" is stuff that people have limited control over, and gets very directly channeled into memes about the sexual ownership of women. Consider PUA culture: ladder theory is very much that same sort of idea, in that it argues that the platonic interest of men towards women is a sham, predicated on the expectation that eventually that relationship will turn romantic/sexual. That is, that men are only friends with women to get into their pants.

:drom: - So I think if there's a real nod to horror in this game, it's in terms of something like that. That the people you might think care about you are only engaged with you under the expectation of eventual sex. That when sexual favors are taken off the table, your whole social support network is in danger of collapsing -- and that even then, it's as much of a liability as it is a positive good.

:drom: - There's a feminist idea of women not tearing each other down but trying to support each other. And while I don't think it's an idea that always holds up in practice (because, again, being a woman in public is difficult to begin with -- and, yes, fighting against sexism carries social stigma even for men), sometimes it has to be taken for granted in order for things to get done. When camaraderie can't be counted on, how does anyone draw boundaries? How does someone say "no" to being bossed around? Can you trust people to help you with your problems, or are you just giving people a list of exploitable weaknesses?

To jump off of what Dromeceiomimus is saying a bit, I want to point out that back before this game came out, I was engaged in a few communities that were the spawn points of the modern day American anime nerd reactionary culture. While one of the reasons I've been interested in this game is "hey I like me some porn", which was what got me into those cultures in the first place, I left when the sorts of frustrating parts of these communities refused to fix themselves and grew more xenophobic and misogynist. These experiences paint a very strong picture of sexual openness being used as a cudgel, and positivity misused as a means to erode boundaries.

:utah: - And that's why your joke isn't all that funny, T-Rex. It's playing into a specific bravado that makes it impossible to set and enforce these sorts of boundaries, because it doesn't view them as worthy of being respected.

:utah: - Ultimately, "yes" is meaningless when you're not given room to say "no".

Now, this is a game from 2012, which makes it feel especially prescient. Depression Quest, another target of this sexualized hate movement, didn't even come out until 2013 (and dealt with similar concerns of social support network stability), and of course it was around August 2014 that these hate groups got a name that's stuck.

I don't know how much the writing on the wall in this game is informed by the shape of the culture at that time. But it was around 2010 or 2011 that I broke with it. I can't speak to how strongly these norms inform the Japanese doujin culture -- that is, how much of anime nerd subculture's reactionary bent is spillover from attitudes taken from Japan and how much of it is just a specific Western cultural arrogance that makes its own misogyny a point of pride (see also: one of any thousand paternalistic articles decrying the existence of the burkah written by old white "intellectuals" as inherently bad for women). A year after this game came out, a game in which you fight skirmishes by commanding anthropomorphized versions of axis battleships, which is so obviously problematic that I don't think it's worth elaborating on.

:utah: - Sure. The word "moe" has had some drift in its meaning between what it originally described in Japan and what it came to mean in the US, but that sort of moe anthropomorphism leans into the objectification of women hard. A game like Hatred also wears its social regressiveness like a badge of honor, but the form that it takes is much easier to dismiss as unpleasant and needlessly offensive, and to take what it has to say as two raised middle fingers pointing at everyone and yet no one in particular. But it's much harder to say no when that regressiveness wears a cute and pleasant face -- and even harder when it's backed by a culture ready to shut you out in calling for a more critical approach.

:utah: - It probably looks like we're reading too much into this scene -- and maybe we are! But it's better than just leaving this stuff unsaid so that people never bother to think about it in the first place.

Like I think there's a bunch of stuff here we're discussing that, just in the demo, is being discssed in the work as text, and not just subtext. (Hell, even "Not subtext. TEXT." is arguably a major point of the work...)

:trex: - Sorry, I got quiet. I somehow wound up watching the creator of Hatoful Boyfriend have a conversation on Twitter in real time over a very similar subject. It's interesting to see these lines of discussion, ah, dovetail with each other.

:utah: - For the love of god, T-Rex if you're jumping back in just to make bird puns...

:trex: - Consider this my argument that there are Japanese visual novel writers who are aware of these cultural issues! We were just asking about it, weren't we?

:drom: - I mean, I'll give you credit on this much -- this is a very dry and sobering read. I'd like to be here making Audre Lorde jokes, but we've got to get to a point where we can do that first. And that means heavy lifting.

:utah: - To think, we're getting into all of this just to explain why it might make sense that Yuna wouldn't want a friend with obvious concern for her to accompany her, so that she isn't going back up to the roof alone. The potential that a friendship is conditional is scary!

:drom: - And it's difficult to tackle these issues without taking creative risks and skirting into dangerous territory!

:trex: - Hehe. Skirt territory.

:drom: - ... good GOD.

Since this is actually the end of the scene, it makes for a reasonable stopping point. We've had a lot to say and should probably break before taking on anything more.

:trex: - We'll be back soon though! We still haven't even gotten to the good part!
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  #10  
Old 03-07-2016, 12:44 AM
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muteKi muteKi is offline
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Part Three: B-but We're Both Ghosts?

:trex: - Ghosts! What's the deal with them anyway? Supposedly they're formed when a person dies while still having strong feelings or desires, an unfinished business.

:trex: - But what if that dream was to live forever?

:trex: - The tradition is that usually ghosts only pass on when that dream is finally accomplished. Any ghost that wanted eternal life, though? Can't pass on, no matter how hard they try!

:drom: - That certainly seems like it would cause a problem.

:utah: - Imagine if a lot of ghosts had that desire! The earth would just fill up with ghosts, none of which had anywhere to go!

:trex: - You'd have ghosts on top of ghosts on top of ghosts!

:utah: - There'd be no room! Ghosts would float away from the planet in order to find suitable habitation!

:trex: - There'd be ghost colonies on Mars and Venus! We'd be sending out ghosts to probe outer space!

:trex: - ...or maybe ghosts aren't real and are just a myth developed to explain why bad things can happen

The End

Did you know? There are already 40 Dinosaur Comics strips where the subject is directly about ghosts. I did not read all of them to check, so in the event there is already a comic about this ghost paradox, my sincerest apologies.

Let's continue!

Fade in from black. Music: My Territory



Quote:
After homeroom, I picked up my bag and left the classroom.

Of course, my destination is the roof.

I got it. Really, I get it already. I understand.

What I had seen during lunch wasn't a dream and it wasn't a hallucination. It was reality.

The voices I'd heard when I'd eaten that candy... The two I'd seen when I'd turned around...

That had been real. In other words...
Fade in/out. Same music.



Quote:
They were here...


Quote:
These two...

...Were real ghosts.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in Black Sailor Uniform a.k.a. Sachi
Welcome back. Thank you for coming.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Girl in White Sailor Uniform a.k.a. Megumi
Geez, what took you!
Another fade. BGM: Kindred Spirits.

The position on the roof is a little different now (zoomed in a little) but because the characters are re-using expressions, I'm just going to reuse the captures I already have when it's possible, to save time and space.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
So your name is Toomi Yuna-san?
[quote]I could clearly hear her asking my name and clearly see her figure now.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
Hm... that's kind of a weird name.
Quote:
I think it's pretty normal...

We'd exchanged names with each other, along with some simple introductions.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Oh? I think it's a wonderful name.
Quote:
The one in the black sailor uniform was Enoki Sachi-san. She'd passed away eighty years ago, in her third year.
:trex: - Leave it to a visual novel to find a way to explain why an 80-year-old woman looks like she's still in high school!



Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
You think...? Well, if you say so, Sachi-san, I guess it could be...
Quote:
And the one in the white sailor uniform was Nagatani Megumi. She passed away thirty years ago in her first year.

Both of them are indeed genuine spirits. Sachi-san died in an accident. Megumi-san, of illness. And they'd both had proper funerals, or so they'd told me.

So then why were they still lingering here?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
The two of us were both students, here, you see, and we died before graduating.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
By the time I realizedit, I was a ghost on the roof here, and I had my fateful reunion with Sachi-san!
:utah: - So given the huge difference in time between their deaths, Megumi must also have been able to see Sachi as a ghost!

Quote:
Would you really call that "fate"?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Megumi and I both had such strong regrets that we couldn't pass on.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
That's why we became ghosts here, in the place those regrets were deeply tied to.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
The ones called "haunting spirits", I guess. Well, I'm alright with it since I get to be with Sachi-san.
Quote:
And what were those regrets, exactly?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
The two of us, you see...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
...Liked girls.
Quote:
...What?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
We liked girls, fell in love with girls... and died when those feelings were at their strongest. Which is why we're still here now as spirits.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
I became a ghost because I loved Sachi-san so much!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Oh, thank you, Megumi. I love you, too.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
.........
Yuna almost sounds like she's choking in this clip.

:trex: - You're not supposed to swallow the pellets all at once!

Quote:
Huh? What? What is with these two?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
...Umm, so you guys are, like... .........Lesbians?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
You don't have to make it sound so physical! Sachi-san and I have a very pure relationship!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
"Lesbians"?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
It means female homosexuals, Sachi-san. But there are different ways to say it, aren't there? You know, like "S."


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
"S"?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
"S" for "sisters."
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Huh, really? I didn't know that.
:utah: - This is probably a reference to "Class S", a genre of fiction related to yuri. The way that Megumi is describing her relationship to Sachi is a good example of this, in that it's about a mutual crush between schoolgirls of different ages, based around deep emotional ties and not so much a physical one.

:utah: - The exchange here is probably a bit of a joke, given that my general impression is there's not agreement on what, precisely, the S actually stands for.

:utah: - There's an aspect of ephemerality to typical Class S stories; the romantic interests tend to wind up separated due to death, marriage, or graduation. So these two are a bit unusual, in that they've been in a relationship for, well, probably as long as Megumi has been dead.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
Huh? What? Why not?!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Wasn't there a prettier word for it these days? What was it... some flower, I believe...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
...Y-Yuri?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Yes, that's it! I believe I've heard that word used in this way.
Quote:
"These days"...? Oh, right. These two died a pretty long time ago, huh?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
"Yuri"... Heheh, I like that. Lilies are such pretty flowers.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Hm... Oh, I know...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Why don't we set all that aside and you just call the two of us "kindred spirits"?
We've discussed the translation difference between "yurirei" and "kindred spirits" and I don't think we need to discuss it again, but it makes the ending of this scene a lot clearer when you understand the pun. Sachi uses "yurirei" here in the Japanese dialogue -- making it a clearer result of the thought processes leading up to that line. That we can't really translate the line into English means that we have to lose the flow of conversation here, even if "kindred spirits" is trying to do something similar.

:trex: - Since Japanese is based around syllables (rather than separate categories of consonants and vowels) and only a handful of different vocal sounds, it's easy to find and create puns in the language. A lot of stuff rhymes or has matching syllables.

:trex: - Why, the Japanese word for "dinosaur" is "kyouryuu", which could make us the "kyouryuri crew"!

:utah: - Still, it's politically expedient in some corners right now to hate on the very idea of localization, which ignores the fact that stuff like this bit literally cannot be translated. The best we can do is find something that's "close enough". Meaning is obviously lost in "kindred spirits" but it does fit with the idea of "Class S" as Megumi was expressing it, and it's still at least trying to get the concept right rather than be a direct word swap.

:utah: - If you want to see what happens when translators don't actually try to adapt meaning into the new language, you should check out the demo for Flowers on Steam. It is a game that is pretty, but the translation is nigh unreadable.

:drom: - Please, everyone, treat your localizers with respect.

By the way, if you would like to send out words of appreciation to the game's localizer (who, frankly, has done a brilliant job), she goes by @TulipGoddess on Twitter.

Anyway, back to the game.

Quote:
.........Excuse me?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
...Wow, that's wonderful, Sachi-san!
Quote:
...Really? You're okay with that?
Yuna's reaction mirrors what I assume you all feel every time T-Rex cracks a joke in these posts. In Japanese it's certainly because "yurirei" is a hell of a pun, but in English, well, certainly "kindred spirits" feels like a really corny way of putting it, no?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
W-Well, I think I get it, but...

So, in other words, you two are a couple?
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  #11  
Old 03-07-2016, 12:45 AM
muteKi's Avatar
muteKi muteKi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
Yeah!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Right.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
So then why are you still ghosts?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
"Kindred Spirits."
Quote:
Do we really have to?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
You, well, found your "kindred spirits" and got together, right? Shouldn't that have been enough to pass on?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
.........
Sachi sounds like she is about to say something, then pauses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
.........
Megumi just sighs.

Quote:
Huh? They went all quiet.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
...You're right. I do have an adorable partner named Megumi now...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
But it seems that wasn't enough to satisfy the two of us...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Why's that?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
To find your love and understand her feelings is wonderful... but it seems we won't pass on without exploring those feelings for each other.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Huh...? Y-You mean...?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
G-Geez, don't make us have to spell it out for you! Sachi-san and I want to become one in soul and body!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Wh-Whaaat?! Y-You mean...?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
Hey, what are you thinking about, you pervert?!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
You're the ones thinking about it, aren't you?!
:trex: - It's your turn, readers! Can you come up with a good pun about interrobangs?!

Quote:
Weren't you the one who was just talking about how "pure" your relationship is?!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
But that's just how it is. If Megumi and I become on in body as well as in soul, then I think we'll be able to leave this world without regrets.
Quote:
I think I can feel my brain melting. Well, at least they're trying to pass on instead of just sticking around as ghosts.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
A-Ah, I see... Then why don't you just, like... d-do it, so you can pass on?
Yuna's voice sounds very nervous now. Clearly she's a bit uncomfortable by this discussion.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Well, the thing is...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
The two of us don't know how it's done is the thing!
:drom: - This is a rather longstanding trope in the genre. Lots of "but how do two girls do it". Thankfully it's complicated at least a little bit by the fact that these two don't have bodies. But if I had a nickel for every time I read "But we're both girls!" in one of these stories I could probably safely retire to a nice southern California suburb.

:trex: - Bless the out-of-context yuri bot on Twitter (@ooc_yuri) for my next response.







:trex: - The account is not wholly safe-for-work, so make sure to view responsibly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Er...
Quote:
"H-How it's done"...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Do you know?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
O-Of course I don't!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
I didn't think so... I assumed you weren't in a relationship because you always come here alone to eat lunch.
Quote:
Oh, gimme a break! I mean, I don't, but...! And this is a girls' school, you know! Even if I had a boyfriend, I wouldn't be able to have lunch with him here!

And I've never even thought about having a girlfriend!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
So is that what you wanted me for? I'll have to say I'm sorry I can't help you, then.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
No duh! Sachi-san already said she "didn't think so," right? We already knew you'd be useless for this!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
...My apologies. What do you want, then?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
At this school, there are other girls like us; girls tortured by hidden feelings in their hearts for other girls here.

But they don't have that last little bit of courage, or an opportunity to act on their feelings.

And since we're ghosts, we haven't been able to do anything for those poor girls. But...


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
There's finally someone who can hear our voices now.
Quote:
Huh? Do they mean...?
:trex: - Oh, so it's "sono-ano-hana"!

:utah: - ...

:drom: - ... Seriously?

For those who didn't get T-Rex's joke, "Sonohana" is short for the Japanese name of the Petals series I mentioned in the introduction (Sono Hanabira ni Kuchizuke O), and "Anohana" is similarly short for an anime series from a few years back where a reclusive high school kid is asked by the ghost of one of his friends to do favors for their old friends so that she can pass on. If you care to find out more about it, you can find it referred to in English as "The Flower We Saw That Day".

For those of you who did get T-Rex's joke, I am so terribly sorry.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
We would like you to help those girls act on their feelings; give them the tiny push that we can't.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
We want you to play Cupid!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Wh-Whaaat?!
Quote:
N-No way! I can't do that!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
With just a small nudge, I'm sure those girls could make their feelings known.
Quote:
Wh-Why should I have to butt into their business like that...?!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
There's probably one here today. She should still be in one of the buildings.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Ah, that one?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Yes, you're right. Megumi, I'm going to take Yuna-san to see her.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
W-Wait a second! I can't poke my nose into this stuff...!
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  #12  
Old 03-07-2016, 12:47 AM
muteKi's Avatar
muteKi muteKi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
Oh? You want to turn us down?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
O-Of course I do! I can't do this!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
Hmm...? So you'd like to read my messages every day in class from now on...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Th-That was you?!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
And that's not all, you know? I could put a real curse on you. I wouldn't mind...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Urgh...
Quote:
That's underhanded...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Now, now Megumi. We cant force her. How about just for today then?

Just humor us today. I want you to follow me and see what we mean.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
See one of the girls we've found. For just a little bit of your time today.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
Would you at least do that?
:trex: - And I would do anythi-ing for love, but...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Ugh...
Quote:
Fine. I get it. I'll go along with you, for just a few minutes, today only. But that's it!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
I got it... But just today, okay?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
That's fine. I'll take you there, then. We'll be back, Megumi.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
Okaaay. I'll be waiting, Sachi-san.
Quote:
Sachi-san walked off toward the entrance to the roof. Err, more, "floated," I suppose, like a ghost would. Huh? Megumi-san's staying here?
Indeed, where this bit happens, Sachi's art moves to the left and fades out. It's sorta cute.

:trex: - The nice thing about ghosts is not needing to have to develop walk cycles!



:trex: - Yeah, that's right, dude. You should take it personally.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Nagatani Megumi
Come on, Sachi-san's waiting, isn't she? Hurry up and follow her!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Uh, right...
Quote:
What's that about? Well, whatever. I followed Sachi-san over to the stairs.


Quote:
When I opened the door, Sachi-san remained where she was for some reason, saying to me...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
We're headed to the inner building. I'll meet you at the entrance.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toomi Yuna
Oh, okay.
Quote:
We're not going together?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Enoki Sachi
Look closely at the girl who shares our feelings, would you? And if you think you can, please help her just a little.
Quote:
I really have no intention of doing that, though.

Sachi-san's smile was genuine and gentle as she spoke.
Fade out/in.

This is probably another good stopping point for a while.

:utah: - The last couple updates have gotten us a few comments! Which is great! We're thankful for everyone out there reading this and sending us their comments.

:utah: - Honestly, we're a little surprised anyone is reading this at all!

:drom: - We got a few comments on the rant I did at the end of the previous update. Which, fair enough; it's overwhelming especially this early into the game.

:drom: - I stand by most of my comments though. Having gone ahead and looked at later parts of the game, I think the argument that I was making isn't just relevant but actually a pretty strong theme of the game. While I did skim through some parts, it's worth going back and reading again as we go into more of the game, I think.

There was a specific comment about the bit I think we'd like to comment on. On reading it I thought it was a very valid point, and probably the weakest part of Dromiceiomimus's comments. It's likely that it's not Yuna feeling discomfort, but it's just that she's surprised about yuri as a thing. Anyone else here have thoughts?

:drom: - I thought at first that I might have been wrong; it was a lot to discuss all at once and probably an easy mistake to make, but looking back on this update, I'm not so sure.

:drom: - Going back to it, it really doesn't seem like Yuna's unfamiliar with the idea. After all, she's the one who actually mentions the term to Sachi and Megumi.

:drom: - Another point is that, and this doesn't carry through well in a purely text playthrough, Yuna's voice doesn't seem to convey what I'd think of as confusion. It sounds like like apprehension, or possibly fear and disgust. She does say she's never thought about having a girlfriend, though...

:utah: - Do you think it's because she's repressed, then? She's aware of the concept but, in a sense, doesn't want to think about it?

:drom: - Well, there are a lot of reasons why someone might be creeped out by or uncomfortable dealing with discussion of sex. What we think of as cultural repression is one of them, but it doesn't have to be the case. However, it's something that the story definitely deals with, actively. The sort of feelings that I think Yuna is carrying in her voice get noticed by Megumi and will eventually actively bring up. Don't worry, this isn't much of a spoiler because it's part of the demo.

:drom: - I don't think I have much else to add beyond all that, though.

:utah: - I did see a couple comments when we went to share this, that it's not a good idea to do a playthrough like this of, well, not only a game that just came out but also one that's so narrative-heavy and not driven by choice or much interactivity.

:utah: - Three things. One, this game has already been a lot more successful than anyone expected, probably because it's easy to sell a game as "the first uncut erotic novel on Steam". Two, we probably won't cover every part of the game, generally only single choices in branches, so there will be a lot of the game you'll be missing out on. Three, by the time we get out of the demo content, odds are there'll already be a sequel or follow-up of some sort in the works.

:utah: - Or if not a sequel maybe we'll get digital translated copies of some of the extra works like the manga, artbooks, or (as unlikely as it would be) the audio dramas. Don't count on it though.

:utah: - But yes, if you have the cash to spare, we strongly encourage spending money on this. It's a lot of fun and putting money toward it ensures that we get to see more stuff like it.

:trex: - Also, I saw a couple comments that we need more pictures of the girls. This update has a lot of them!

:trex: - Hey, I like looking at them too!

I think that's everything we need to cover now, so this is probably a good time to end our update. Did we learn anything today?

:drom: - I learned that the Funky Phantom was only ever drawn floating.

:utah: - I learned that Meat Loaf jokes are still funny 20 years later.

:trex: - I learned that "just souls bein' mates" isn't as catchy as "just gals bein' pals", even when the souls are interested in mating.

And I learned that I should never end another episode with this gimmick! Thanks for reading!
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  #13  
Old 03-07-2016, 01:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by muteKi View Post
:trex: - Also, I saw a couple comments that we need more pictures of the girls. This update has a lot of them!
Let the records show that I meant it as a joke.
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  #14  
Old 03-07-2016, 01:19 AM
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well, I happen to be the sort of person who likes getting captures of every minor detail change in facial expression
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  #15  
Old 03-12-2016, 06:49 PM
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There won't be an update for a couple of weeks due to me being on vacation, so in lieu of that here's a picture of a T-Rex keychain plushie and Peg's Comitia 115 booklet engaging in a staring contest.


Last edited by muteKi; 03-26-2016 at 01:10 AM.
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Old 03-26-2016, 02:20 AM
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Because I'm a bit busy with grad school and job applications and things of that sort, I probably won't be updating this thread for a couple weeks. However! I bring tidings of absurd news: the game was apparently so popular that we're going to be getting translations of the drama CDs.

Even the director of the game appears to be surprised by this announcement.
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Old 10-13-2016, 08:09 PM
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Abandoned
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big & little death , ecchi homos , kyouryuri crew , trexual healing

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