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The best JAST game for a new player is...

GobboGobbo Hand of the King
edited February 8 in Game Discussions Posts: 108

If you're a JAST veteran, what JAST title/s would you recommend to someone new to VNs?

If you're new to VNs, what are you playing and enjoying?

I've been playing a few VNs now, but Steins;Gate has me most hooked. It also seemed like one of the classic JAST titles, and the fact that there was a bunch of Steins;Gate stuff at my local card store intrigued me even more. I'd recommend it for so many reasons including the mood, the story, and the humor. Also, the setting of Akihabara made the whole game feel more real to me.

Post edited by Gobbo on

Comments

  • sanahtligsanahtlig MOD Hand of the King
    Posts: 2,889

    School Days is a fully-animated love triangle drama. It's a great first game for people who like anime and aren't used to extended reading, and who prefer a highly branching plot with choices that matter. If you like to explore branching storylines to unlock many different endings, School Days can be a fun game.

    Song of Saya is a Lovecraftian horror game that really showcases the strength of the VN medium. It's a short, gripping, very tightly written drama that plays with your emotions.

    Aselia the Eternal is a JRPG with a unique fantasy setting and a storyline featuring unusually mature themes. It breaks the mold of anime-like RPGs with simple and cliched storylines. The SRPG gameplay is pretty unique too. However there's no ero because JAST released the censored version (I played the original adult version in Japanese).

  • Aurora3500Aurora3500 Kohai
    Posts: 52

    I would recommend similar VNs that Gobbo and Sanahtlig have.

    Steins;Gate: because it is well known among the Anime Community as a popular Anime. It is more accessible to a wider audience from not having 18+ content in it. And is overall a fantastic story. The routes in the game give good examples of showing how the several endings you can get in a VN are not "bad" endings, and how it is simply a different route that Rintaro could've taken, not necessarily being more "right" or "wrong" compared to the other choices you can make.

    Aselia the Eternal: For most of the reasons Sanahtlig states. It's nature of being a JRPG/VN hybrid will help fans of JRPGs get used to the structure of VNs and how it still has good gameplay. I've really loved the Unique Battle System Aselia has created by having the 4 elements of Red/Green/Blue/Black, each with their own characteristics they apply to characters (both protagonists, alies, and the enemy) And it may be from this unique system that I love it so much. It gives a great turn based strategy element to it which reminds me of how I love Chess. And I love how this system was carried over into Yumina along with Seinarukana as well. Also considering this game and Seinarkana are available on Steam now in an all ages version both games become accessible to a lot more people who wouldn't have known about the games before as well.

    The more mature story themes and overall "serious" feeling of the story of Aselia is also what makes it appealing I feel. You somewhat feel the weight of becoming involved in a War and having to kill people to protect the ones you care about. Which is what the protagonist feels throughout the whole game.

    Yumina the Ethereal: I would also recommend for any new VN player. It was pretty much my 1st VN in practice and is what got me aware of JASTUSA and their involvement in legitimately bringing the VNs I really wanted to play to countries outside of Japan. It has a lot of great comedy I felt, and the lighthearted nature of the game with the Student Council President Election and the interesting battle system based off of Aselia's is what made the game for me. The 4 main characters you eventually got to know and love each of them for their own characteristics. And you get to spend the whole game with Ayumu, Yumina, Kirara, and Ai. Most of the sex scenes in the game are optional for people who are not a fan of them and are more interested in the other elements of the game. And I can't get enough of the battle system. It's so good I feel.

    For the VNs I'm playing now. I'm still in the process of playing Seinarukana. I've loved the game and have been wanting to focus on it. But I've gotten busy because of IRL matters related to my job, and haven't been able to focus as much on playing VNs or games overall that I want to. I'm wanting to change that, and I have gotten past the Magic World (With the very difficult Berbalzerd fights there). I will eventually beat the game. When I feel I can dedicate the time to it. I will also buy Flowers, as I'm interested in that VN.

  • NandemonaiNandemonai Kohai
    Posts: 5,830

    I'll also recommend Littlewitch Romaneque. Great characters, great artstyle, surprisingly addictive gameplay. The Steam version is there for people who don't feel comfortable with the heavy loli stylization of the artwork.

  • GobboGobbo Hand of the King
    Posts: 108

    @Aurora3500 said:
    I would recommend similar VNs that Gobbo and Sanahtlig have.

    Steins;Gate: ...

    Aselia the Eternal: ...

    Yumina the Ethereal: ...

    The three games I own :) . Aselia was the first Steam game I ever bought.

  • jacksprat1jacksprat1 MOD Hand of the King
    Posts: 172

    Starless, Gibo, and Catgirl Alliance! ... Oh, wait. You said "hook with," not "traumatize with." Silly me!

    Being serious, I would say that would depend somewhat on how comfortable you think the person in question is with adult material.
    * If you're really unsure (or sure they won't like adult material), I would say a game like Flowers, Aselia, or the Steam versions of Littlewitch Romanesque or Seinarukana would all be great jumping-on points.
    * If you think they might be okay with adult material as long as the game wasn't wall-to-wall smut, Yumina the Ethereal would be a fantastic game, and so might Sonico (I put Sonico in this middle-ground category because even if not adult, the boobies are... uh, up-front with this title). For these titles, and for such a person, some explanation would probably be in order about how the visual novel scene works and how not everything in this medium with explicit sexual material deserves to be written off as pure pornography.
    * If you know they're an anything-goes kind of person, you could probably start anywhere, but I think it would be best to start with one of the aforementioned or an H-game that also happens to have a good story, such as Kana, Hanachirasu, School Days, etc.

    One thing that I think might be a challenge is deciding whether to introduce a beginner to a great atypical visual novel, or one that might not be as stand-out awesome but is more representative of what to expect from visual novels in general. Littlewitch, Yumina, and Steins;Gate are all amazing VNs, but they're also unique enough that gamers may struggle to replicate that exact kind of experience again, at least from the English-translated visual novel market.

  • NandemonaiNandemonai Kohai
    edited February 16 Posts: 5,830

    The most important thing is to try to figure out what kind of stories you tends to like, and then pick something that will match those interests. There are very very few games with more or less universal appeal (just the same way there's very few books or movies that everyone likes) and the worst thing is to pick a first title that doesn't really appeal to you because you "should like it" or because "everyone likes it".

    I guess one of the big easy ones is, is there an anime you liked that was actually based off a visual novel? Try that visual novel then, if it's in English. Many of them are, but certainly not all. Titles that are in English include Steins;Gate (which you already played); Da Capo (which has an iffy translation, I'd almost skip it and move to Da Capo 2 if you liked the Da Capo anime); Kanon; Clannad; Planetarian; Shuffle (but unfortunately the good version isn't in print anymore); Koihime Musou (which is awesome); and I have the annoying feeling I'm forgetting some. Edit: Ah, of course. The Higurashi series! MangaGamer is in the middle of re-releasing the games on steam.

    Another big easy one (which I can't believe I missed) is sequels to visual novels you liked, or were made by the same people. That would include Steins;Gate 0 (which is out) and Chaos;Head (which has a fan patch).

    Post edited by Nandemonai on
  • NandemonaiNandemonai Kohai
    Posts: 5,830

    Also, Steins;Gate is widely considered to be a masterpiece, one of the finest examples of the whole format. Don't expect to find many games of its caliber. Also, Steins;Gate has a particularly strong storyline. There are a lot of fluffy happy slice of life VNs. These don't typically have strong stories. If you want a great story, any of the following would be worth looking at: Root Double, Ever 17, 999/VLR, Koihime Musou, Kara no Shoujo, Cartagra, Princess Waltz, Gahkthun of the Golden Lightning (just check out the plot summary here), Demonbane, and Chou Dengeki Stryker (it has that same mix of humor and action, though I find the mix doesn't quite gel, I still enjoyed it a lot), or Tokyo Babel.

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