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Old 2007-03-09, 16:06   Link #941
Kaioshin Sama
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sushi-Y View Post
Generalizations tend to lead to conclusions like that, but Key games are popular, they make people laugh and cry, they stand out, and those are the simple facts. I fully disagree with the notion that the games are "interchangable" in any way. It's true that some of the settings can come off as stereotypical, but the thought that "I've seen this before" has never crossed my mind when I was playing any of their games.

Then again, it seems like most people immediately think "tragic sob stories" when they hear the names of Key games, which is a valid, but gross generalization in my opinion. Sure, everytime a new Key game comes out, the fans praised "omg that was so sad/touching I bawled a million times", but that doesn't make the games "unoriginal" or "predictable" in any way. In fact, it should prove the opposite.

Maybe it's just the Kagikko effect, where Key fans have "programmed" themselves to unconditionally cry at and love every new game Maeda-san and the gang puts out. I won't deny that, since I'm a Kagikko myself. On the other hand, if one cannot shake his or her preconceptions before starting something, then he can't blame anyone but himself for not being able to enjoy it. Everything is generalizable to a certain extent, but if you become fixated on them, then it's no surprise if everything begins to look the same to you.
So what your saying is the plot summaries I read probably give a skewed view of what happens in the games towards the depressing side rather than the more light-hearted stuff, this is very very likely.

I can't shake this feeling that people automatically equate anything sad or depressing with deep and meaningful regardless of the context and they fail to notice that isn't always the case. Preprogramming is indeed something I've noticed among certain groups including Kyoto Animation fans, Key fans, Gainax fans and Aya Hirano fans and its something thats beginnning to chaff at me lately, because its not fair that other companies will have to struggle to earn respect and prestige, while certain groups have it far to easy. I'm really huge on fair competition from a political standpoint so that opinion is coming into play as well. It's not that everybody isn't putting in the effort its just clearly some companies would need far less effort to remain profitable and Key is one of them.

I'm sure that there are most defininetely deeper aspects to a lot of these things, but the preprogramming will cause these things to be irrelevant in favour of whatever trait the company is most identified with that people liked in the past be it Haruhi for Kyoto, Depressing stuff in a market of happy for Key, Anno and Eva for Gainax and the voicing of Haruhi for Aya. I see it all the time when I'll notice something particularly poignant in a show like Code Geass, which is overlooked in favour of CC's butt or something that reminds them of Gundam Seed. I've only been message boarding for a while and picking the brains of fellow anime fans for a short time so I'm not sure if it's always been like this or if its the internet that's causing it or what, but its really disconcerting that its that easy for companies to work their fans over and over in a similar manner once they've discovered their weak point and it certainly doesn't bode well for the future of a number of genres.
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Old 2007-03-09, 20:09   Link #942
CTFFMike
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sushi-Y View Post
This month's Dengeki G's just arrived... filled with Little Buster news! ^^ Besides new CGs for each heroine (クドかわいいよクド), there's also the interview featuring Maeda-san, Ayanokawa-san, and Na-Ga-san, which I touched up on in a previous post.

Some points of interest from the interview:
- Like reported earlier, the scenario is almost 100% complete. The art and music are both close to completion as well.
- The music is also taking a new turn, with music from PMMK-san, a first timer to Key games, being the center focus this time around. Of course, sounds from familiar composers such as Maeda-san and Orito-san are still around as well.
- Maeda-san himself has composed at least 10 tracks.
- The staff appears very pleased with the overall soundtrack. The theme song has gotten a lot of praises as well.
- The game will be fully voiced, including all main and sub characters.
- Casting is also 70~80% determined.
- This time, an emphasis has been placed on making the game fun, in the form of various omake features.
- Info on individual characters' scenarios... which I'll skip here
- Mio is missing a certain "something" that others have.
- Keigo is a tsundere.
- Like I mentioned in a previous post, Maeda-san is responsible for Rin's scenario, as well as all male characters. The guys will appear in every heroine's route and take up the comedy role. Rest assured, there will be lots of laughs any way you go.
- Many male character CGs as well (おほほっ?(^ω^))
That better be true or I am holding you personally responsible j/k
Seriously, Clannad without voice just isn't the same. Hope they hire the same caliber of seiyuus as they did for the PS2 version.
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Old 2007-03-09, 21:21   Link #943
luckyovermind
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Really? Probably because I played the unvoiced version first, I heard a few samples and the voice over doesn't match well with my imagination. So I never cared about the PS2 version
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Old 2007-03-10, 01:48   Link #944
Sushi-Y
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaioshin_Sama View Post
So what your saying is the plot summaries I read probably give a skewed view of what happens in the games towards the depressing side rather than the more light-hearted stuff, this is very very likely.
Ask anyone who played CLANNAD and they'll tell you the game was as funny as it was touching. Maeda-san's sense of humor (especially when it comes to male character gags) has always been highly praised. Pretty much every conversation that involved Sunohara in CLANNAD managed to made me laugh, sometimes for minutes. Unfortunately, a lot of the comedy (especially the "pointless" kind) had to be sacrificed when adapted into anime, with Kyoani's AIR coming into mind right away.

As for the bias thing. I agree that Key (or any other successful company, for that matter) has an advantage over other lesser known companies since Key games are guaranteed to sell and become popular no matter what, whereas it'll take a true masterpiece for a small softhouse's game to become well-known. The truth is, there are a lot of games out there by smaller companies that are just as great as the big shot games. People just don't know about them, that's all.

Still, I don't think that makes Key games any less significant: they're still some of the best visual novels I have ever played. Whether there are other great games out there or not doesn't change that.

The truth is, fans in this field are not as forgiving as you might think: if their expectations were betrayed, they'll slam the game no matter how popular the company is. So when you see over 1000 reviews of CLANNAD, all indicating something positive, you'll have to admit that there must be something about it that makes people like it.

As for Code Geass, unfortunately, the show is shadowed by the fact that I am a big fan of the light novel Owari no Chronicle (The Ending Chronicle), which shares some common elements with Code Geass (such as a "cool guy" male lead), but is simply "awesomer" than Code Geass in every way. I'll keep my OwaKuro avatars until the day an anime adaptation is announced.

Quote:
Originally Posted by luckyovermind View Post
Really? Probably because I played the unvoiced version first, I heard a few samples and the voice over doesn't match well with my imagination. So I never cared about the PS2 version
I agree with CTFFMike. Although some might say that unvoiced + your own imagination beats any voiced game, I cannot imagine playing through CLANNAD without voice, ESPECIALLY for Sunohara and Akio-san (くぅぅ、僕も注入されてぇーーっ! would NOT be the same without Sakaguchi-san's voice )
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Old 2007-03-10, 23:37   Link #945
djmaca
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Can anyone tell me who has played Rance here?
I am in need of serious spoilers.
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Old 2007-03-11, 03:07   Link #946
Cruzz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djmaca View Post
Can anyone tell me who has played Rance here?
I am in need of serious spoilers.
Well, that's certainly vague. I guess we should assume that you're talking about 戦国ランス as you don't specify anything else, but you do realize that there are 10 Rance games?

I've only played 鬼畜王ランス & ゼス崩壊, so can't really help you with 戦国 if that's indeed the one you're talking about.
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Old 2007-03-11, 04:14   Link #947
Nvis
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cruzz View Post
Well, that's certainly vague. I guess we should assume that you're talking about 戦国ランス as you don't specify anything else, but you do realize that there are 10 Rance games?

I've only played 鬼畜王ランス & ゼス崩壊, so can't really help you with 戦国 if that's indeed the one you're talking about.
Just beat the historical route of 戦国ランス, but you can find 98+ pages worth of spoilers here

I see why this game is so popular
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Old 2007-03-11, 21:04   Link #948
Sushi-Y
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Nothing big, but Kanishino's download page has been updated with downloadable character system voices:

http://www.pulltop.com/gp06/06_downl...ml#systemvoice

Miyabi's OS boot voice... BEST EVER.
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Old 2007-03-12, 20:41   Link #949
kct
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaioshin_Sama View Post
You know the thing with Key games is it's like they are directed by Yoshiyuki "Kill-Em All" Tomino.
I know what you are trying to tell about comparison between Tomino and Key games in terms of depression, but there is a significant difference in here .

While Tomino was largely driven by his depression (except for Ideoon, in which he claimed he doesn't know why he made the anime end up that way) after all the politics he have (vs. Nagano because of differring opinions over directions of animes (Nagano wants everything in the post-Zeta animes to be at least FSS-level grand (shown by his concepts), while Tomino wanted something more realistic...especially after binning Nagano's proposal for the ZZ), disliking the merger between Sunrise and Bandai). This is a stark contrast to everything he did after Victory, in which everything was more upbeat (like Turn A and the Zeta movies). Of course, the times changed, and the man himself changed (the Gundam Evolve about the Nu Gundam was directed by him, and he personally wanted to give a happy ending to some of his works).

As for Key's case, it's more of the desire to give a plot to the game...otherwise it might end up being typical. In the rather crazy world of visual novels, innovation is something one must do to at least survive...well, if you think Kanon is bad enough, Planetarian is bound to make you cry. Leaf tried the depressing path with Tenshi no Inai Juunigatsu (something I got round to playing recently, but my schedule...), and it worked very well with the direction (albeit a little short), although they are more known for more upbeat fare like ComiPa and ToHeart. It just takes effort to pull something off (and different, and actually worked), and not many companies will dare to step off what they are known for.

Heck, even more well-known companies are known to at least suffer (well, some here have said that Really? Really! have not been doing exactly that well as expected, compared to the rest).

Heck, as for KyoAni, they are already known for Full Metal Panic! animes, and even their rendition of Air before that, but MoSH is just their big break to be truly well-known.

Of course, as the rest have said, it takes something really good to make a break. Look at TYPE-MOON and you know it.

Sushi-Y: Good that you don't get into Code Geass, otherwise you will be talking about Pizza Hut here...

Last edited by kct; 2007-03-13 at 09:11.
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Old 2007-03-12, 20:58   Link #950
MakubeX2
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Innovation is one thing.

There's another thing that's in common with all the big companies that have survive the strings of bankruptcy recently. The merchandise spin off that keeps them sustainable till the next big thing.

Let's not talk about good stuffs from Key and TM here. TH2 was mediocre and not very big, but what keeps Leaf going ? The merchandises of figures, books, anime, etc.
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Old 2007-03-12, 21:05   Link #951
kct
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And in some cases, the big break into television.

I don't know about TH2 though (storyline-wise I got the 'overly typical' vibe, maybe I have not got round getting it yet), but the way the first-day launch was reported seems to show how people have waited for it...and it's a PS2 version of the game.
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Old 2007-03-13, 00:48   Link #952
rg4619
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Both PS2 (~86k copies, iirc) and PC (~110k) versions of To Heart 2 sold very well - considerably better than Clannad, on the whole.

In terms of reception, the game didn't make a huge splash, but it seems to be generally well received. I think Clannad can be described in a similar fashion (strong initial sales, but much less post-release enthusiasm than with Kanon or Air), although that game is better liked.
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Old 2007-03-14, 10:47   Link #953
cyth
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Juliette's site is closing on March 30th; users were asked to remove external links without further instructions. Could this be one more from the string of softhouse closures, or are they just relocating the site?

EDIT: Looks like will-game.net is shutting down and many sites are affected by this, so I'm guessing it's just a site relocation for now.
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Last edited by cyth; 2007-03-15 at 08:21. Reason: update
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Old 2007-03-15, 11:57   Link #954
-Nyu-
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Hmm, Haurhi is getting a game, maybe..
http://www.visual-novels.net/vn/inde...jc_allComments
I try to imagine that as eroge *-*
@ Toua: As far as I get you are right, no closing (thank god..) There are enough companies which went bankrupt..
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Old 2007-03-15, 12:08   Link #955
donthuang
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OMG

http://www.bs-i.co.jp:8080/clannad/
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Old 2007-03-15, 14:49   Link #956
-Nyu-
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Yay, KyoAni will do a Clannad series!^^
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Old 2007-03-15, 19:15   Link #957
djmaca
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I said in the kurogane blog that they WILL do it since Kanon is done!
Prediction : 100% accurate.
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Old 2007-03-15, 20:19   Link #958
kct
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Pretty much everyone is looking forward to a CLANNAD anime right now, it would prove to be the next big thing.

I wonder why Toei is still allowed to do the CLANNAD movie though (as rumoured).
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Old 2007-03-15, 20:23   Link #959
relentlessflame
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kct View Post
I wonder why Toei is still allowed to do the CLANNAD movie though (as rumoured).
Well, it's no rumour -- that's just the precident that's been set. They're doing two adaptations for all the major Key properties: one by Toei, and one by Kyoto Animation. It could be argued that this is way of appealing to an even broader audience.
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Old 2007-03-16, 05:03   Link #960
Cloudnine
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Hurrah~ I found a bit of time to digest one new game lately (ノ∀`*)



Kissy Kissy ~Watashi no Tamago~ is one of the more lesser known titles released this year. Unpopular as it may be though, it still is an excellent game with a simple, yet heartwarming story of 'creating memories' and 'finding the place where one belongs'.

The first words that came out of my mouth when I saw the boxart was, "買う!!" The artwork in Kissy Kissy's is simply beautiful. The stylized sketchiness, watercolor themes is a step away from the general idea of CG art, a welcome change, especially when it is done this well. While there are some notable differences, the general idea of pastelish/watercolor touches are notably taken from the manga style of Honey and Clover.




(The asthetic design of the game deserves some praise as well. The minimalistic menu design and text system is simple and very elegant. I really wish more softhouses would follow this trend.

The story centers around Junichi, a student and convenience store clerk. Upon his way back from work, his peaceful life takes a sudden stop as he finds an unconscious girl on the beach. Being the nice guy that he is, Junichi rescues her and brings her to his house. After waking up, the girl draws a blank in her memory. Who she is, where she came from, things that we usually take for granted was lost to her. Still, even with all that she has lost, she has one strong desire. That desire was to stay here, with Junichi.

The setting has been done many times before. It's not original, but I couldn't help being attracted to what the game really shines in, which is the athmosphere created from the game's unique asthetic style, and the athmosphere created by the characters and their dialogue. The focus of the story is generally fixed on the love triangle between Junichi, Minao, and Yu, so there's very little sidestory or extra characters to throw off the flow of the story.



Playing the game, I've long lost count on how many times I wanted to glomp Minao. Her lovable personality and slightly 'どじこ' nature really works wonders in putting a smile on my face. Being voiced by Kimura Ayaka (木村あやか) was BIG points for me, especially since she is one of my favorite seiyuus.



Yu is Junichi's childhood friend. Before the events in the story, their relationship was fairly distant. However, after meeting Minao and learning her circumstances she and Junichi slowly begin to return to how they were before. Her character is slightly つん toward Junichi for obvious reasons.

--------

Overall, Kissy Kissy brings in several elements that work together to create refreshing and polished game. From the relaxing music to the summer athmosphere, the game overflows with artistic style and personality. The replay value is lesser than most bishoujo games since it has only two main endings, but the scenario length is more than enough to engage the player into the story.

Score 85/100
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