AnimeSuki Forums

Register Forum Rules FAQ Members List Social Groups Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Go Back   AnimeSuki Forum > Anime Related Topics > Games

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 2007-12-10, 11:16   Link #1
relentlessflame
 
*Administrator
 
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Age: 32
Classifying "Visual Novels"

(I moved this conversation to its own thread. It was originally part of the "What Ero-games are your favorites at the moment?" thread.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
Eh, I don't want to be technical here... but at least try to differentiate between Visual Novels (VN) and Adventure Games (ADV).
You're actually one of the first people I've seen in the English community try to differentiate things in this way. In English fandom, most people tend to consider "Visual Novels" the big container, and "Adventure Games" a subgenre of it, because a Western-style adventure game is not even remotely similar (you'd only confuse people). Again, whether technically accurate or not, I consider this to be more useful for conversation purposes, as the difference between the two is more about implementation than about anything else. The heart of the game -- the novel-like story content -- is the same. Otherwise, you'd need another even bigger container to put both in. Do you have such a label to propose?

I guess the issue is that the gameplay style is so big/popular in Japan that it spawned distinct subgenres (ero/consumer, NVL/ADV, etc.). But for the rest of the world, it's so obscure that it's much more useful to have a global label so we can differentiate "Japanese story games" from everything else out there. In the context of the usual English fandom, p997tt's post (where he mixes everything together under the "Visual Novel" banner) makes perfect sense.
relentlessflame is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-10, 12:36   Link #2
selkirk
***y translator
*Scanlator
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
According to JA wikipedia, it's actually the other way around. Visual novels are a subset of Adventure games.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JA wikipedia VN article
広義ではアドベンチャーゲームの一種と見なされる事もある。制作者側では前述の名称を区別しているが、世間 では明確な区別がされていないことが多い。
Quote:
Originally Posted by tl
In essence, [visual novels] are seen as a type of adventure game. Those in the industry differentiate between the two, but among the general public there is no clear distinction.
Personally, I really don't see the need for a distinction either. Is there really that much difference between calling a game a Visual Novel, and an Adventure game? Whether the text appears over the background, or in a box at the bottom, seems to be the main criteria I've seen people use to differentiate the two, but does it really make a difference? I generally call them Visual novels myself, since it's visual, and it tells a story like a novel.
__________________
selkirk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-10, 13:42   Link #3
relentlessflame
 
*Administrator
 
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Age: 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
According to JA wikipedia, it's actually the other way around. Visual novels are a subset of Adventure games.
Ah, yeah - that makes sense. So technically speaking, all Visual Novels are Adventure games -- now things will just get even more confusing!

Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
Whether the text appears over the background, or in a box at the bottom, seems to be the main criteria I've seen people use to differentiate the two, but does it really make a difference? I generally call them Visual novels myself, since it's visual, and it tells a story like a novel.
Yeah, that's the way I see it too. To the uninitiated, it adequately describes what sets it apart from other video games, whether the text is at the bottom or on top of the whole background. As the JP wiki articles says, it's an industry distinction, but it's really not that important to the rest of us.

Question: Would we be better off if this thread were "What Visual Novels are your favourites at the moment?" We've often talked about non-ero games and consumer adaptations in the thread anyway, and I don't think whether or not a game has ero content is really the deciding issue for most of the games we're discussing here. Does that make sense?
relentlessflame is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-10, 13:52   Link #4
rg4619
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Quote:
Personally, I really don't see the need for a distinction either. Is there really that much difference between calling a game a Visual Novel, and an Adventure game? Whether the text appears over the background, or in a box at the bottom, seems to be the main criteria I've seen people use to differentiate the two, but does it really make a difference?
The adventure game classification is merely a vestige. The genre name may have been meaningful in describing the ancestral game form (Japanese-style adventures like Snatcher, Famicom Detective Club, or EVE Burst Error. These in turn possibly derived from the more interactive text/graphic adventures from the west), but it's irrelevant now that the interactivity has been removed.
rg4619 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-10, 17:14   Link #5
cyth
ふひひ
 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Age: 28
Well, I'm somewhat keen on sticking to correct (meaning japanese) terms' usage conventions, but there are always exceptions that might entertain us from time to time. For example, minori called ef an "interactive novel". The term is somewhat puzzling because the scenario is read like a novel, it has an AVG-style text box at the bottom, storyline and endings are predetermined, and the only interactivity found is a few decission points which really don't influence anything because the outcome is the same.

I think English-speaking fans tend to label these types of adventure games as visual novels based on the characteristics of their stories. Similarly we tend to call them eroge or ero games if they include a "sufficient" number of ero scenes. But it's puzzling where to draw the line because some AVGs tend to have excellent scenarios but quite a few ero events. I think we should move away from this line of thinking and just stick to whatever their creators call them separately. We really don't need a term to label them all, we need a pool of standard (japanese) terms.
__________________
cyth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-10, 17:37   Link #6
relentlessflame
 
*Administrator
 
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Age: 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toua View Post
I think we should move away from this line of thinking and just stick to whatever their creators call them separately. We really don't need a term to label them all, we need a pool of standard (japanese) terms.
Fervently disagree. The purpose of a genre classification is to differentiate one thing from another. In the context of English fandom, it's much more important to distinguish this "family" of game (ADV/NVL/etc.) from other more familiar genres and classifications. It's one thing if we on the "inside" know the actual labels and distinctions, but we need a term to explain what this "mega-genre" is to the outside world. If you start confusing people with all the myriad Japanese terms (which, again, exist because there's such a large diversity in Japan), it'll only hurt understanding. If I call Da Capo an Adventure Game (for example), they'll think it's like Zelda (an "Adventure Game"). For all intents and purposes, we use "Visual Novel" as this banner label now (hence visualnews.net, visual-novels.net, etc...), which maybe incorrect, but I think we need something... Otherwise, we're just being overly-geeky by sticking to the Japanese terms just because they're Japanese -- IMO...
relentlessflame is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-10, 18:21   Link #7
rg4619
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Quote:
For example, minori called ef an "interactive novel". The term is somewhat puzzling because the scenario is read like a novel, it has an AVG-style text box at the bottom, storyline and endings are predetermined, and the only interactivity found is a few decission points which really don't influence anything because the outcome is the same.
minori calls all its products "interactive novels", so this isn't unique to ef (which retains the "interactive" part via a handful of decision points). I think they want to eliminate the perception that they make "games", hence the shift away from typical naming conventions.

At any rate, this is just another example of how silly the terms are. Japanese marketers love stretching definitions as far as possible (Gun Action RPG?), with adventure game being a prime example.
rg4619 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-10, 19:45   Link #8
cyth
ふひひ
 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Age: 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by relentlessflame View Post
It's one thing if we on the "inside" know the actual labels and distinctions, but we need a term to explain what this "mega-genre" is to the outside world. If you start confusing people with all the myriad Japanese terms (which, again, exist because there's such a large diversity in Japan), it'll only hurt understanding. If I call Da Capo an Adventure Game (for example), they'll think it's like Zelda (an "Adventure Game").
I don't know if you've noticed this, but "outsiders" are already being fed that "myriad" of different terms. ANN likes to vary between them. Lately they've been sticking to terms such as "adult PC game", they've used "visual novel" for labeling AIR and Higurashi no Naku Koroni, also "dating simulation" some time ago. I've actually found a news entry with the term "erotic adult PC dating simulation game". ^^;
Quote:
For all intents and purposes, we use "Visual Novel" as this banner label now (hence visualnews.net, visual-novels.net, etc...), which maybe incorrect, but I think we need something... Otherwise, we're just being overly-geeky by sticking to the Japanese terms just because they're Japanese -- IMO...
But these are Japanese games. It's good to remember that they will always be a niché of a niché of a niché. The ones looking to cross over to this side will have to do some hard digging by themselves before they'll even have a chance to stumble upon the efforts of this small group of passionate otaku. I don't see much sense in establishing a sup category term, especially not some twisted creation that will haunt us years from now. Then again I really don't see any sin in labeling AVGs as "visual novels". My suggestion was grossly addressing the ones present in this topic.
__________________
cyth is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-10, 21:27   Link #9
relentlessflame
 
*Administrator
 
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Age: 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toua View Post
I don't know if you've noticed this, but "outsiders" are already being fed that "myriad" of different terms. ANN likes to vary between them. Lately they've been sticking to terms such as "adult PC game", they've used "visual novel" for labeling AIR and Higurashi no Naku Koroni, also "dating simulation" some time ago. I've actually found a news entry with the term "erotic adult PC dating simulation game". ^^;
Well, that's my point though. If we, as a community, start getting really anal and sending more mixed messages like "that's not a visual novel, it's an AVG game! Learn the difference, fools!", it'll get even worse! At least "adult PC game" has the benefit of being generic. Probably too generic and reminscient of "porn game", but still...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toua View Post
But these are Japanese games. It's good to remember that they will always be a niché of a niché of a niché. The ones looking to cross over to this side will have to do some hard digging by themselves before they'll even have a chance to stumble upon the efforts of this small group of passionate otaku.
Well, I don't think we're doing ourselves any favours by increasing the barrier of entry through a plethora of terms. I for one would like to make it as easy as possible to get people to cross over so that this "niche of a niche of a niche" (no accent, BTW) doesn't have to stay that way much longer. Anime, manga, and now light novels have made or are making the transition... I don't think it's impossible if we take a long-term view.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toua View Post
I don't see much sense in establishing a sup category term, especially not some twisted creation that will haunt us years from now. Then again I really don't see any sin in labeling AVGs as "visual novels". My suggestion was grossly addressing the ones present in this topic.
Well, in that case I have no problem. I don't really want to create a new term, but I would want to stop using the current term if a lot of people disagree that it's the better one to use. I like "visual novel" as a catch-all. I guess I was just voicing concern about the original poster's comment about "at least learn to tell apart your visual novels from your AVG games!" That, to me, seems to be going down a deadend road, even if it's accurate. First get people in the door, and down the road, they'll learn to appreciate the difference...
relentlessflame is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-10, 22:12   Link #10
selkirk
***y translator
*Scanlator
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toua View Post
Well, I'm somewhat keen on sticking to correct (meaning japanese) terms' usage conventions, but there are always exceptions that might entertain us from time to time. For example, minori called ef an "interactive novel". The term is somewhat puzzling because the scenario is read like a novel, it has an AVG-style text box at the bottom, storyline and endings are predetermined, and the only interactivity found is a few decission points which really don't influence anything because the outcome is the same.

I think English-speaking fans tend to label these types of adventure games as visual novels based on the characteristics of their stories. Similarly we tend to call them eroge or ero games if they include a "sufficient" number of ero scenes. But it's puzzling where to draw the line because some AVGs tend to have excellent scenarios but quite a few ero events. I think we should move away from this line of thinking and just stick to whatever their creators call them separately. We really don't need a term to label them all, we need a pool of standard (japanese) terms.
So, what is the main difference between the subgenres? You seem to make a distinction between AVGs, eroge, visual novels, and I assume other "standard Japanese terms".

As far as I know, and in my opinion, "adventure game" (abbreviated as either ADV or AVG) is the main genre category. According to JA wikipedia, "they are games which involve the player choosing commands to select their actions. Many of them require solving a variety of puzzles. Adult games are often of this genre". So, the term ADV could really mean everything from just choosing dialogue options, to something like Zork, where the player has to make the commands themselves. Note that I would not consider where or how text is displayed as being any determining factor.

The article also makes a distinction with "simulation games", with the difference being that the main character in a "simulation games" has various attributes, and the outcome of commands may change depending on said attributes.

Visual novels would be a subcategory of ADV games, but the two terms are not interchangeable. All VNs are ADV games, but not the other way around. The main difference with VNs is that the game mostly follows a linear path, with only a few decision points. The player would not have the option of making their own commands, which is the norm for classic Western adventure games.

How about terms like eroge? I'd consider this as just another tag which can be used to further describe a subgenre, and not really a subgenre in itself. Trying to make a distinction between this and VNs is like trying to make a difference between Sci-fi RTS and Fantasy RTS imho.
Things like "dating sim" would also be merely another tag that could be added to an actual genre, and not a genre itself. A genre should define how a game is played, not what the content is. Kinda like describing Wasteland as a "post-apocalyptic adventure game". Post-apocalyptic isn't a genre, it's just a tag to describe it.

And how about things like where text appears? I've seen that being used as the main argument for differentiation, but I really don't think that's an important factor at all. Continuing with my RTS analogy, it's like calling a system like C&C with a sidebar building system different from, say, Warcraft. It's just the interface, for crying out loud.

The Japanese companies themselves don't help the matter with terms like kinetic novel, interactive novel, sound novel et cetera. A lot of it seems superfluous to me, and is just a marketing label to have a "different" product from their competitors.

So, anyway, I've been rambling, and I doubt it's very well organized. How should the various categories and/or subcategories be defined?
  1. Adventure game
    • Classic Western adventue games, such as Zork
    • Visual novels
      • Eroge - 18+. Can also be used to describe non-VN subgenres, such as Simulation games, or outright porn games.
      • Dating sim - has dating, or making a date, as the main objective. Quite often categorized as a Simulation game, since there are other factors such as character attributes that determine whether you can impress the other party.
      • Kinetic novels - No decision points. AFAIK, the only well known one is Planetarian.
      • And other tags, which can be used to further describe what kind of VN it is.
  2. Simulation game
  3. Strategy / RPG / SRPG
  4. Among other genres
So a typical game can have multiple genres. There's nothing wrong with an VN / SRPG. Just having gameplay elements doesn't mean it's no longer a VN, and must be labeled under only a single genre.
__________________

Last edited by selkirk; 2007-12-10 at 22:29.
selkirk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-11, 06:57   Link #11
luckyovermind
hungry~
 
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
I've been "brought up" by KJ to call them erogames or eroge. But then I found out that many people also call them visual novels (the term used by LEAF in the good old To Heart days).

So now, I don't really care any more. As long as I can establish coversation, it doesn't matter which term I use.

By the way, kinetic novel is a term made up by visual art's. Because the releases (many, including Planetarian) are VNs without decision points, some people reverse-define it to categorise games with no decision points. IMO just use VNs is fine.
__________________
http://forums.animesuki.com/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=44256&dateline=116056  6586
luckyovermind is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-11, 09:24   Link #12
musashiken
ニア ☆ 命
 
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Mwahaha, something I posted actually spawned into this.


How do we know what is the original genre as termed by the Japanese? Especially when some of you don't know Japanese and when you see several English sites using the term Visual Novels and you start to think that that's the right general term for all erotic games?

To be honest, I admit that I don't really know. But the reason why I started this was because someone mentioned something about a Non-adult game (Symphonic Rain) in a thread specifically for Ero-games and termed it as a Visual Novel among a group of both Adult and Non-adult games. I mean, that's just plain confusing right? Normally I wouldn't give a damn, but I decided to post something to see what happens and viola, this happens.

Well so I decided to do a little research on the Japanese wiki and I found this.

And it just makes things more confusing.

But what I did gather is that the term Adventure game is the main genre of all the games we discussed. But its' abbreviation ADV is normally used to term many Gal Games and Boys' Love games. Which doesn't help at all.

So where does "Visual novel" come into my argument? Like I said, I wanted to clarify it because I feel strongly that "Visual novel" shouldn't be used to generalize all games (both non and adult) like what this guy was suggesting. I'm not blaming him or anything, after all he got his sources from some other guy.

For me, Japanese games were always Erogames or non Erogames (why go into the technicality of whether "Ero" is rightfully a "genre" or "description"?). Visual Novels are the ones with text all over the background and it was immortalized when Leaf started using it for their games. ADV games are the ones with the dialogue boxes in the bottom half of the screen ala Da Capo, Shuffle etc. Come on, almost all Erogames I played had text only in this 2 forms.

You can agree with me or not, but the best way to be sure is to go the the official game sites and look at the genres the companies give their products. You can't beat that. Sure there are more and more weird genres but so far the common "Above 18" games I bothered to check are ADV, AVG, Visual Novel, SLG, SRPG.

Call me anal if you want, but tell me again, where did you get the idea that Visual Novels should be the main genre? Shouldn't we just stick to "Erogames"? I mean, we were talking about Adult games right?


No actually, I just want to stir up things and see the reaction. This is a forum no? Good times.
__________________
musashiken is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-11, 11:06   Link #13
selkirk
***y translator
*Scanlator
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
Call me anal if you want, but tell me again, where did you get the idea that Visual Novels should be the main genre? Shouldn't we just stick to "Erogames"? I mean, we were talking about Adult games right?
That's the whole point. We're not only talking specifically about Erogames. "Visual Novel" would just be a term to indicate all types of games where you get a story in text form, and you make choices to choose the path the story moves along.
One of the problems with just using the term "Erogame", is that there's a huge variety of games, with vastly different gameplay, which could all be grouped as such. Would you really consider Kanon, Schoolmate, and let's say, some strip Mahjong game the same thing? All three could be considered as an "Erogame", but few people would really consider them to be the same type of game.

Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
How do we know what is the original genre as termed by the Japanese? Especially when some of you don't know Japanese and when you see several English sites using the term Visual Novels and you start to think that that's the right general term for all erotic games?

To be honest, I admit that I don't really know. But the reason why I started this was because someone mentioned something about a Non-adult game (Symphonic Rain) in a thread specifically for Ero-games and termed it as a Visual Novel among a group of both Adult and Non-adult games. I mean, that's just plain confusing right? Normally I wouldn't give a damn, but I decided to post something to see what happens and viola, this happens.
Granted, good call for pointing out a Non-adult game in a thread which should be talking about Erogames. However, no one's saying that "Visual Novel" should be used for all erotic games. Far from it in fact. Furthermore, that's not the only case where people talked about games with no erotic content in that thread, and hence why a better term than "Erogame" is needed. Unless you say that the definition should be strictly adhered to, and a new thread created for, oh dang, we don't really have a term to use, do we? What, "What Non-Ero-games are your favorites at the moment?" I highly doubt that would stay on the topic of, for lack of a better term, ADV games for long.

Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
Well so I decided to do a little research on the Japanese wiki and I found this.

And it just makes things more confusing.

But what I did gather is that the term Adventure game is the main genre of all the games we discussed. But its' abbreviation ADV is normally used to term many Gal Games and Boys' Love games. Which doesn't help at all.
And why wouldn't it help? It's not like various Galge and BL games aren't "Adventure" games. They are, it's just a very open description, and quite unlike what many people seem to think of as an "ADV" game. Still, that doesn't mean it's not a correct term. Kinda like how Chess, 4X games, TBS, RTS, etc, can all be called "Strategy" games.

Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
So where does "Visual novel" come into my argument? Like I said, I wanted to clarify it because I feel strongly that "Visual novel" shouldn't be used to generalize all games (both non and adult) like what this guy was suggesting. I'm not blaming him or anything, after all he got his sources from some other guy.
I'm no expert on what p977tt was thinking, but those games do share certain characteristics, just not whether or not they have erotic elements. They all tell a story through text, similar to what I among others would likely group under the term "Visual Novel". Whether or not it's adult isn't really the point here, imho.

Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
For me, Japanese games were always Erogames or non Erogames (why go into the technicality of whether "Ero" is rightfully a "genre" or "description"?). Visual Novels are the ones with text all over the background and it was immortalized when Leaf started using it for their games. ADV games are the ones with the dialogue boxes in the bottom half of the screen ala Da Capo, Shuffle etc. Come on, almost all Erogames I played had text only in this 2 forms.
And by coincidence, all the Erogames you've played have been, in my opinion, Visual Novels. How about a strip mahjong game? How about an erotic simulator with no story? As for "ADV" being specifically and only for "ones with the dialogue boxes in the bottom half of the screen", as you yourself mentioned, that's not the case, even for the Japanese.

Does where the text appear really make enough of a difference to merit different genre labels?

Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
You can agree with me or not, but the best way to be sure is to go the the official game sites and look at the genres the companies give their products. You can't beat that. Sure there are more and more weird genres but so far the common "Above 18" games I bothered to check are ADV, AVG, Visual Novel, SLG, SRPG.
The thing is, oftentimes the genre labels the company give don't help, like the example given earlier (Gun Action RPG). Nor do the similar-but-not-quite terms that are never defined help, such as "Interactive Novel".
__________________
selkirk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-11, 11:54   Link #14
relentlessflame
 
*Administrator
 
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Age: 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
Granted, good call for pointing out a Non-adult game in a thread which should be talking about Erogames. However, no one's saying that "Visual Novel" should be used for all erotic games. Far from it in fact. Furthermore, that's not the only case where people talked about games with no erotic content in that thread, and hence why a better term than "Erogame" is needed. Unless you say that the definition should be strictly adhered to, and a new thread created for, oh dang, we don't really have a term to use, do we? What, "What Non-Ero-games are your favorites at the moment?" I highly doubt that would stay on the topic of, for lack of a better term, ADV games for long.
And in fact, one of the main points in my original comment was that maybe that thread should be redefined to include related "non-ero-games" (consumer ports, games like Clannad/Little Busters, etc.) -- we've discussed them some in that thread anyway. Because, I think anyway, that what the thread is really about isn't defined by whether or not the game has ero scenes. That's just an opinion though...

Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
No actually, I just want to stir up things and see the reaction. This is a forum no? Good times.
So, what... does that negate your opinion or something? Playing Devil's Advocate? You really don't care but just wanted to pick on a n00b for not being technically right? A comment like that confuses me about your motivation, so what is it?
relentlessflame is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-11, 20:28   Link #15
luckyovermind
hungry~
 
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
1
2
3
4

This will definitely make a good 4-koma manga
__________________
http://forums.animesuki.com/image.php?type=sigpic&userid=44256&dateline=116056  6586
luckyovermind is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-11, 21:33   Link #16
HashiriyaR32
GT-R Fanatic
 
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Toronto, Canada
Age: 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by luckyovermind View Post
1
2
3
4

This will definitely make a good 4-koma manga
The Little Busters 4-koma manga came out a year before the game did.
__________________
HashiriyaR32 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-11, 21:38   Link #17
relentlessflame
 
*Administrator
 
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Age: 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by HashiriyaR32 View Post
The Little Busters 4-koma manga came out a year before the game did.
You just absolutely completely missed the joke entirely.
relentlessflame is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-11, 22:37   Link #18
HashiriyaR32
GT-R Fanatic
 
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Toronto, Canada
Age: 25
Crap, pwned by sarcasm.
__________________
HashiriyaR32 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-12, 09:05   Link #19
musashiken
ニア ☆ 命
 
 
Join Date: Feb 2004
Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
That's the whole point. We're not only talking specifically about Erogames. "Visual Novel" would just be a term to indicate all types of games where you get a story in text form, and you make choices to choose the path the story moves along.
One of the problems with just using the term "Erogame", is that there's a huge variety of games, with vastly different gameplay, which could all be grouped as such. Would you really consider Kanon, Schoolmate, and let's say, some strip Mahjong game the same thing? All three could be considered as an "Erogame", but few people would really consider them to be the same type of game.
Well, the thing is we need to find out how "Visual Novels" originated. I'm pretty sure Leaf was the forefounders of the term with their famous "Shizuku", "Kizuato" and "To Heart" Visual Novels. And why are they called such? It's because the creators wanted to create a type of digital Novel with slight interaction (choices). And novels are essentially pages and pages of text, so Visual Novels have text all over the screen with pictures as the background. Oh and the Japanese Wiki says so too. And if you know Japanese, it also states the specific difference between Visual Novel and Adventure Game and that is what I said: the placement of text. To Heart is a Visual Novel because the game is described wholly with text and without much visual aid. Whereas Shuffle is an Adventure game because it's basically like watching anime with still pictures and text that is mainly dialogue with little description. And the interface of the game is deliberately made to emulate a traditional adventure game: Upper 2/3 of the screen is like a 2d dungeon view, lower 1/3 of the screen is for dialogue.

And because of the above, I just cannot agree with your definition of "describing a story with text" as Visual Novel. Comics tell stories with text too, so are they novels too? Yeah, it's a shitty analogy but what you're trying to do is to completely ignore the original Japanese intention of the term and explain it along English terms. Don't forget that the term "Visual Novels" did not originate along with erogames. There were thousands of erotic games involving nudity during the PC-98 and Dos/V eras, years before Leaf created the word "visual novel" for their games. And yes, Leaf was the first to create the "whole page with text" games.

Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
Granted, good call for pointing out a Non-adult game in a thread which should be talking about Erogames. However, no one's saying that "Visual Novel" should be used for all erotic games. Far from it in fact. Furthermore, that's not the only case where people talked about games with no erotic content in that thread, and hence why a better term than "Erogame" is needed. Unless you say that the definition should be strictly adhered to, and a new thread created for, oh dang, we don't really have a term to use, do we? What, "What Non-Ero-games are your favorites at the moment?" I highly doubt that would stay on the topic of, for lack of a better term, ADV games for long.
There's always "All-ages" Japanese PC games. And no, I did not say that Visual Novels should only be used for erogames. But yes, I agree there are people who do not know what ero-games mean so they have the benefit of the doubt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
And why wouldn't it help? It's not like various Galge and BL games aren't "Adventure" games. They are, it's just a very open description, and quite unlike what many people seem to think of as an "ADV" game. Still, that doesn't mean it's not a correct term. Kinda like how Chess, 4X games, TBS, RTS, etc, can all be called "Strategy" games.
Well, I was just merely saying that all this is just confusing for the casual player.

Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
I'm no expert on what p977tt was thinking, but those games do share certain characteristics, just not whether or not they have erotic elements. They all tell a story through text, similar to what I among others would likely group under the term "Visual Novel". Whether or not it's adult isn't really the point here, imho.
That's the difference between you and me, I'd still call Symphonic Rain an ADV game instead of Visual Novel. Although the creators call it a M.ACT. Which probably means Music Action game and I think it's a good name for the genre since you do play music in the game.

Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
And by coincidence, all the Erogames you've played have been, in my opinion, Visual Novels. How about a strip mahjong game? How about an erotic simulator with no story? As for "ADV" being specifically and only for "ones with the dialogue boxes in the bottom half of the screen", as you yourself mentioned, that's not the case, even for the Japanese.
That's your opinion. I was using that example as a simplified representation of most Japanese Adventure games. And you misunderstand me, I was trying to state the other way round, that games with dialogue boxes in the bottom part of the screen are usually termed as ADV/AVG by the creators. If other elements are introduced like "Strip Mahjong" as the bulk of the game play, it would be called "Strip Mahjong" (I'm not kidding, Elf has called their strip mahjong games as such). And an erotic simulator is called that, Insult Simulation Game or something similar in Japanese.

Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
Does where the text appear really make enough of a difference to merit different genre labels?
As per my reasons above.
If you're trying to generalize games, using general terms like Japanese Adventure Game, Japanese Bishoujo Game might be a better choice. For me, I just stick to Non-Adult, Erogames and the subgenres like Visual Novel, SRPG, Strip Mahjong etc. Of course I'd have to further explain myself most of the times...

Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
The thing is, oftentimes the genre labels the company give don't help, like the example given earlier (Gun Action RPG). Nor do the similar-but-not-quite terms that are never defined help, such as "Interactive Novel".
I dunno, if you play enough erogames, you'd probably agree to the labeling.
I mean, it's not hard to guess from the names given right? Gun Action RPG? Probably an RPG about guns, and if I know erogames as well as I do, it's more likely just a normal ero ADV game about guns in a fantasy setting. Interactive Novel? Yeah, Visual Novel with more options. But maybe because I belong to the older group of erogamers, there were very few genres then. I agree that all this new labelling is just marketing gimmick to promote the same thing with a new word.

Quote:
Originally Posted by relentlessflame View Post
So, what... does that negate your opinion or something? Playing Devil's Advocate? You really don't care but just wanted to pick on a n00b for not being technically right? A comment like that confuses me about your motivation, so what is it?
Yeah my bad for that statement. I was caught between wanting to fling my hugely worthless epenis at a noob(or bunch of noobs) even though I could be wrong in the first place and wanting to be nice instead and take back my words.
Yep, guess I'll go rant instead with unabashed smartass attitude.

Quote:
Originally Posted by luckyovermind View Post
1
2
3
4

This will definitely make a good 4-koma manga
Hmm, I should have joined in that argument. Little Busters is NOT an erogame.
In the official site, Little busters is an "ALL-AGES" Love Adventure game.

There are 2 kinds of games in Japan. "ALL ages" and "Above 18" games. To me, "Above 18" games are Erogames and vice versa. There are no in-betweens except for the occasional panties-flashing console games like Dreamcast games and what happened to that? So it's either Nipples or No Nipples in the world of Japanese gaming. Unless I'm mistaken and Japan is rewriting its censorship categorizing laws.



Look, point is there's no easy way for us English speakers to simplify the categories of Japanese games with just a word or two. You either go and make an effort to understand their way of terms or not at all.

If you want, here's my formula in differentiating them:

Number 1: Japanese games are either "ALL AGES" or "ABOVE 18 (I call them erogames)"

Number 2: If they're Visual Novels, they must be full of text.

Number 3: If they're ADV/AVG, they must be 2/3 picture and 1/3 dialogue.

Number 4: If they're something else, they must be ADV style during dialogue and probably have "extra" gaming options like battle game modes etc.

Number 5: If there's the word "Novel" somewhere, I'm probably looking at pages full of text.

Number 6: If it's called Insult game and has both pages full of text and pages with partial text... hell do I even care anymore?
__________________

Last edited by musashiken; 2007-12-12 at 09:45.
musashiken is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 2007-12-12, 12:57   Link #20
relentlessflame
 
*Administrator
 
 
Join Date: Dec 2003
Age: 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
Yeah my bad for that statement. I was caught between wanting to fling my hugely worthless epenis at a noob(or bunch of noobs) even though I could be wrong in the first place and wanting to be nice instead and take back my words.
Yep, guess I'll go rant instead with unabashed smartass attitude.
Because that makes it so much better...

Quote:
Originally Posted by musashiken View Post
Look, point is there's no easy way for us English speakers to simplify the categories of Japanese games with just a word or two. You either go and make an effort to understand their way of terms or not at all.
Opinion understood. But don't you find it elitist as hell to go around correcting people, especially newcomers, for misclassifying an AVG as a Visual Novel, or vice-versa? To me, it does make you sound like nothing but an unabashed smartass... and to what end? And then we have the larger English fan community, which has largely embrassed "Visual Novel" as a catch-all/super-genre (visual-novels, visualnews, etc.). You going to go around telling them wisen up too? I could accept something like "Japanese Adventure Game" or "Japanese Bishoujo Game" (but not the dreadfully ironic short form, "b-game" ), but that doesn't seem to be the way the wind is blowing. Much like how "otaku" and "hentai" took on different meanings in English culture, Visual Novel may be on its way to doing the same thing (though, the fact that it was pointed out that even the average Japanese consumer doesn't distinguish between their Visual Novels and AVGs is interesting).

That being said, I don't think it makes any sense to put "18+" or "all-ages" at the top of the classification pyramid. It's a descriptor, much like "PC or console" or "PS3, XBOX360, or Wii". The age descriptor describes the audience, not the genre. When an 18+ game gets ported to a console and the ero-scenes removed, the gameplay doesn't change, the target audience does. This is why I wonder if it makes any sense to have a "what ero-games are you playing at the moment?" thread -- is the fact that they have ero scenes really the defining factor for those of us discussing it in that thread?

In any event, here's to hoping for some more diverse opinions on the matter.
relentlessflame is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:07.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
We use Silk.