The Curse of Kiseki thoughts

4 11 2015

This article is about the game Legend of Heroes: Trails in the Sky aka Eiyuu Densetsu: Sora no Kiseki

Nothing to do with anything MSN or Chinese games but as a Kiseki fan, I’ll just leave this here:
http://kotaku.com/the-curse-of-kiseki-how-one-of-japans-biggest-rpgs-bar-1740055631

Reading this just cringes my heart. I’m glad they managed to see through it in the end.

To be honest, years ago when XSEED announced they would release Kiseki FC(1st part), the 1st thing that came to my mind is: They are tackling THAT?! Do they really know what they’re going into?

This game is by far the most wordy games I’ve ever played in my entire life even though it is not a visual novel. I even suspect it has more words than a lot of visual novels. But the wordy combination made this game very unique (although the RPG is very old school) and really great story telling.

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Now, let’s talk about the Chinese localization of Kiseki instead. It’s also another sad story.
Chinese localization or I should say Chinese fan translations of games/anime/novels are always considered fast. This still take 1 half year to come out.

Everyone thinks the Chinese localization of FC is official. Unfortunately, it is the hard work of the Chinese translation group. The translation initiator sold(?) the script to YTL(the company that release the official localization). Not really sold as in one go, but he got wages from the company. The fan translation group only got a free copy of the official game. For the testers, some claimed not have gotten it, reasons given is lost in postal, not sure if they got or not in the end. Ok, that’s not the point, the fan translation never expected wages and they knew the script is given to the company. The problem is the team felt used. Very used. Their names are not even mentioned anywhere, packaging or credits. An incident that shows YTL deliberately do this: they asked the fan translation group forum mod to delete the statement that Falcomchina(the translation group) translate the game with no returns. After the localization of FC, Falcomchina had a fallout with YTL and broken all ties with that company. As players said, FC has one of the best translations ever released, compared to that, SC, the 3rd translations are not that good.

Actually, this is not the only time this company did this kind of stuff, there are a lot of shady things this company did in the name of ‘official’ but this is only one event. There is one time they directly stole the fan translated game maker software RMXP and rebranded as official just like that. And using their profit they DDOS these fan translation sites just to name a few.

The story about Kiseki is very long and I’ve only summarized it. This incident is also long time ago so not a lot of info and linked original posts are already lost. I’ll leave a few sources in case someone want to read(Chinese):
http://bbs.tianya.cn/post-play-88501-1.shtml
http://bbs.pcgames.com.cn/topic-353442.html

My thoughts:
1) Official translations are always short staffed or even a one man show with tight schedule. Unfortunately, companies are profit driven.
2) Problems with using fan translations for official releases. Eg. Ys: The Oath in Felghana(Not a lot of ppl involved in the fan translation also can cause this kind of problem already) Unfortunately, fan translations are in the gray area, things are more complicated if a lot of people are involved. I once saw the credits of a Chinese fan translation of a visual novel with more than 40+ people involved. And they released the game in only half a year. I cannot even imagine how they are able to manage so many people. (Ok, I’m trailing off from the main subject)





“PRICE”

4 02 2014

This game is out download here(Click the picture that has “PRICE”):
http://www.yetuavg.com/

You can watch OP and game preview here(Warning, this video contains spoilers):
http://www.bilibili.tv/video/av942323/

I have finished the game. I feel the game can improve by showing item name when mouse hovering over it cause there are small things that is in the middle of 2 other things that I think is clicking at the same things. It got me stuck for  a long time. My initial feel is, wow this game screen is big cause it covers my whole screen and it is a side scrolling game. My screen resolution is 1280×800.

Troubleshooting: If you didn’t see the OP movie and directly go into the game, you have to install codec. I have this problem because I use VLC player where the codec is self contained. After you download the free K-lite codec and install, this problem will be solved. This game has quite a few short movies in between and also the end so you’ll have problem understanding if you didn’t solve this problem.

The game is rather short and got 2 endings. After you get the first ending(you can only get the first ending on first playthrough), you can restart the game again playing another room with different puzzles so it’s like a continuation after the first ending, not a replay of the same puzzles to get a different ending. It has something to do with the storyline to be played like this. The puzzles are not particularly hard to solve, but I got stuck because I didn’t know that thing can be clicked.

The game has two parts to solve, one is item solving where you try with anything with everything. (like normal adventure game). Another is mystery solving where you’ll collect ‘clues’ and need to combine 2 clues to get and answer and combining different answers to get a conclusion.

Voice acting is a little bland, can be improved. “The Liars” has great voice acting though with 冷泉夜月 ‘s voice having a towering effect. (That game only has 3 characters and one is a dog that can’t talk, the other is the main chara that doesn’t has much lines). In this game, he doesn’t has that many lines but he returns as the same character, Grim.

The story revolves around the title “PRICE” where you have to pay a price for your wish to be granted. The story has connection with “The Liars” and probably a good thing if you played that one first.

Warning, the true ending is not a happy ending. The game is not scary at all though. No screaming, nothing suddenly jump out to scare you. More like solving puzzles and mysteries to know your past. The more you know, the closer to doom you’ll be. The game also has a lot of cute chibi faces of the main chara when you click on stuff which decreases the any leftover scariness.

This is a great short game with good graphics and music and interesting story to solve. I have a lot of fun. Totally recommended.





Sherlock Holmes Gintama

17 07 2013

I’m waiting for this doujin game!! Chapter 1: “Case 1: A Study in Sugar” will be out at August.

I’m a big fan of Gintama(nothing else can describe how awesome this manga/anime)
Not to say I’m a big fan of Sherlock Holmes, but I like mystery and there is a cute Sherlock Holmes doujin I translated before, so I’m always interested in it.

Here are some points I found about the game:
-This game is really pretty and well made from looking at screenshots and videos(yes, the video captured my total interest)
-This game has Gintama ‘essence’ and ‘love'(manage to get all the iconic faces of the characters and feel of the real story(because the story is crack^^)
-surprisingly it has voice actors(in Chinese of course, not something I’m looking forward to in a visual novel, since it is not the most important thing in vn, but I appreciate the efforts and the voice acting is not bad imho, I do look forward to the rest of the voice acting(only 3 ppl now). On another note, I listen to Chinese drama cds of quite a few BL novels. Although all of them are fan-made, there are good ones.)

You can watch the video here(so funny!)(The narrator is Toshi/Watson, and he said it’s the worst first meeting with that guy, he is facing a corpse while licking a lolipop! If want to lick, then lick mayonnaise instead! XDD):
http://www.bilibili.tv/video/av527343/
Another video(the serious side of it, love it):
http://www.bilibili.tv/video/av549820/

Official website(It is a website, you can click on the words!):
http://www.yetuavg.com/

Here is the publicity pic:





Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!

25 12 2012

Hi guys. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. Nothing to update from Alfagame though. Hmm, this post feels so short. I guess I’ll put out something I have since years ago for you guys to enjoy. (From 2008)

A few comic strips from Satose-san. (She introduce me to this game) (There are 16 or 17(?) pages in total but I only edited 3 pages long time ago, the others are still in raw format. I’m her big fan cause I love the way she make her stories. It is always so witty and funny.)
Each picture is a page, click to view(read from left to right):
1.Photobucket
2.Photobucket
3.Photobucket

I have even older comic strips ^^; It was once posted in aarin during 2006 I think.
Well, that’s the 3 pages. The rest of the pages haven’t translated/edited. It’s about Uncle has a pet tiger that he dotes on, one day he become a human but Uncle immediately hates him and started abusing him unless he turn back to a tiger which he was half successful(only ears and tail) XD…





Neko Takaya Room web game(Mirage of Blaze)

10 09 2012

Warning: Doujin BL Japanese web game. But a really interesting one if you have patience to log in everyday especially special days like Valentine, Christmas or the characters bday and your bday. I think I have come across other Pet Rooms(Japanese also) like this one but I can’t seem to find it anymore.

I only try MSN3 prequel for a bit and not much free time to finish it at least once yet. Review have to be next week. But I can say that it is an RPG that I’ve never played before and has unique battle features which need good strategy(I die a lot so…) but there are a lot of endings which need to mix and match the affections between the 7(I think) characters. The non-beta game will be out soon this week.

I played this game a long time ago, back in 2007-2008 and I played it for around 2 years actively.  For this post, I’ll repost one of my experience on a Valentine Day that I managed to get back on the days when I was actively playing.

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Quick Getting started:
1. Go here:
http://park12.wakwak.com/~akino/cgi-bin/pet001/pet.cgi
2. Enter a username and two different passwords in the blanks(I think same password don’t work), please don’t post any passwords that you use for other important accounts as the pw is viewable(not secure). You automatically register after that and every time you only have to do the same to log in(It’ll save your login info, if you want to manually type in every time, you can uncheck the box below).
3. For the next screen, select month and date of your birthday. Try not to set on Feb 29 because you’ll only get the event every 4 years…You cannot change this so pick carefully.
4. You start the game and you’ll be presented with a random picture of Takaya doing random stuff and you’ll need to choose a response to him like Feed him, scare him etc.
5. Affection will increase or decrease which you’ll see after you click “OK!”(You need to search your username in the list)
6. You can come to the room every 30mins to do an action.
7. 性別:男の子 means he’s male. 年齢:生後3784日: Age. 最後に食事した日: Last day you feed him. 最後に訪問した人: The last person who visit him.(I remember there is an event where you’ll be competing with the last person who visit, I forgot exactly how since it’s a long time ago but it really does matter), [好感度ランキング] :You can see the affection rank. [終了]: Exit game
8. If you do not log in for 15 days after you fist log in, your account will be automatically deleted and you’ll need to start over. I think if you get to the 1st next rank tier(you get your cat to love you), your account will not be deleted after that. My account from 4 years ago never got deleted but I was already at the 1st tier rank at the affection rank list so I’m not sure which tier you have to be to not get your account deleted.
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This is a repost of my record of when I play it on Valentines Day in the past. I find it funny so I put my own captions. There are multiple endings(OMG many selections to go through, before Valentines Day(I think it is the day before, don’t remember), the game will ask you(Naoe) where you want to go, what you’re going to buy for Takaya so the result will be drastically different):

Make up Dialogues^^;;
Feb 14
Oh look it’s Valentine’s Day, sorry Choco Day.

Making Choco
I’ll make choco for my dear cat(lover)
*singing* kitty kitty, chocolate for my lovely kitty =D

Chocobo Choco
What kind of choco I want to make?
Oh right I’ll make a choco chocobo(hey it rhymes XDD), cats like to eat birds right?
(I choose the option that he ask Takaya or something, not sure what it said)

Surprise!
Naoe: The face he make is so cute, want to eat him up now! XDDD
Takaya: Oh a present *squee squee*

Framing
Takaya: My trophy for owning Naoe’s heart *framing up*
Naoe: 8D *Act Smug*

Lvl UP!
Boom!! Affection Lvl UP!! (I got 10 points and enter the next tier lvl)
Too extreme for Naoe that he got Nosebleed.

Under cut is some of my old notes which may or may not help you to play the game. Read the rest of this entry »





The Magic

14 08 2012

I’ve waited for this free Otome game(?)(This is not really an Otome game…but you still get 1 ending with each of the 3 guys) since around 2 years ago when it was announced because I like the magic drawing system.
Actually, I downloaded this game almost the same time as the last game I reviewed but I only get to play it recently(busy). I didn’t finish all the possible endings yet though but I finish the normal ending by winning all the encountered battles. It is really hard to win the last few battles for me! Needs lots of experiment to get all endings.

This game unique feature is during battle, your foe will come towards you and you have to kill him by drawing magic symbol with mouse on the screen. Once a learned magic symbol is successfully drawn, you’ll unleash magic towards the foe. When a foe manages to attack you, the screen will shake which interferes with your magic drawing. Pics from the official site because I’m lazy.

draw magic

Draw magic with mouse to attack

The bad is, I’ve encountered at least 2 bugs in the game. One is attacking the guild owner, the other is the magic circle sticking halfway on the screen when battle ends and it move upwards but you’re still drawing. It got stuck there halfway and interfere with your game playing. I’ve encounter it like 3 times. The other bug is attacking the guild head when you first met him. The game will error and crash. The other bad thing for me because I have a pentium 4 old pc is the game lags a lot when you are performing a magic which interferes with the next magic drawing. Also, you need to get used to the magic drawing because sometimes it seem like there is nothing wrong with the magic I drawn but it still view it as invalid for some reason, after playing for a while you’ll get to know the exact way how to draw it properly.

I discovered this by accident because it wasn’t said in the game at all. But it did said in the website which I didn’t read at first ^^; Did you see the magic symbol beside the dialog? The one that has blue or purple colour? When it turn blue, you can right click anywhere and sneak attack the person/monster. This is really funny and handy at the same time because you can attack ANYONE you see 😄 Some attacks will lead you to a straight game over though but I think this is the key to the various other endings you can get in the game.

sneak attack

Sneak attack someone when light is blue

There are 19 endings(16 bad endings that only has one line text as ending). The other 3 endings are the 3 guy characters each.

Story, you are a female magician who travels with the fragment of the Green Demon God. Money is very important to you. One day, you saved a girl from a fat guy and gotten a mysterious stone. That stone however brings you calamity when you’re playing the game where 2 parties sought after it. The sick and perverted dark magician group and the valiant knight group. In the middle of the chaos, the Green Demon God that you’re always with vanished. It seems the stone has something to do with him.

This is a rather short game but kind of interesting to play. Totally recommended.
Simplified Chinese only, download here(Be sure to download the patch.xp3 and put it together with the .exe file):
http://hydrozoa.sinaapp.com/themagic/index.html

You can also check out her other games, links at below the above link. All her games are rather interesting because she knows how to code so they are not just strictly visual novel. The Nightly Fog Mountain I listed at the side bar is also one of her work.
The ~Sleeping Lily~Mermaid Princess is also her coding(not free).
http://sleepinglily.blogbus.com/
The free sister game to it is the ~Red Rose~Beauty and the Beast.
http://hydrozoa.sinaapp.com/flamecardinal/index.html
The last one is Eynare which is an older game. Free now.
http://hydrozoa.sinaapp.com/eynaresp/index.html





Ah San’s Way of Survival

29 07 2012

Decide to write a review of a Chinese visual novel game I just played. There are actually quite a few numbers of free Chinese visual novels. I think I linked a visual novel game list somewhere in the past. I also have a post that has really nice games that I’ve tried/played or caught my interest.

I just played a great game. It’s an otome game where you can end up with different males but it actually plays like those adventure books. Maybe if you’re from the new generation of kids you may not know this kind of thing. Even from my generation I think most people don’t know. I’m lucky to get one of these because of my older brothers that are way older than me. Basically, the book is actually like a visual novel where you’re given choices and different choices lead to different pages of the book to continue the story. It also has RPG elements where you are supposed to start off with certain HP and luck value and weapons and stuff(don’t remember). You’ll be using 2 dices or make your own random number generator(pencil?). All of the events will depend on the dice for luck and subtract once you used a luck. You’ll also be getting items along the way where you have to write it down on the personal game sheet for the book(or write your own elsewhere.

Ok, this game is actually kind of like that. There is no RPG battle in this game. You just have a choices that affect your survival(this IS a survival otome game). You have HP, RP and Energy. There are also a lot of males that you can end up with I think. It seems there are 4 guys and 1 girl you can woo in this game. I just end up with a bitter game over(killed by the assassin you can woo actually you’re supposed to survive if your HP is over the deducted amount) because HP becomes zero so I haven’t progress much actually.

The story start with the main girl(which looks like a boy…I think some place in the game also commented that way)’s friend going to wake her up. Then she gets hit by the chair in her room and she goes into another world which looks like ancient China. She then was given a pill by an Assassin which almost killed her and ended up in the beggar association(another Wuxia element, the beggar fraction that has high martial arts skills) and started living there with the old man and two young man, 1 seems like a really nice guy that gets flustered easily, 1 seems to know a lot of things, too much. Then you meet the snobbish noble and his sister(the girl you can woo?) if you go to their place, if you did not, you won’t even see the girl for the whole game. Then at night, you always see a guy visiting you(looks like the assassin but Ah San seem to treat him as someone else?) The ending of this demo is you’re guessing WHO is the assassin. Drives me crazy because Ah San seems to talk like she know who is the assassin BUT leaves the player guessing. Oh yeah, if you’re not familiar, in Chinese ancient Wuxia stories, supernatural stuff like changing faces and bodies to a terrifying degree to spoof other people is a skill always portray in this kind of genre, and is always shown like how godly it is where one can become a fat man, a pretty girl, an ugly beggar etc. that no one can guess who you are.

Storywise, this game always breaks the 4th wall. The main chara will always refer to herself as heroine and will say stuff like as the main chara, it’s not so easy to die blablabla. She can also see the text box on your game screen and ‘chat’ with it etc. Anyway, it is made in a fun way so I think it’s really fun. Also, I actually did not play much Chinese visual novels that uses ancient China settings(or Wuxia setting). I think this is a unique thing that happens in Chinese stories and it should be taken advantage of in visual novels since it’s not a common theme. Although I think the OP is a bit cheesy as I read too many Chinese novels and watch too many Chinese dramas that has the telepot-to-the-past theme. It is considered a genre already. The story is actually quite interesting and has events happening that will lead you to clues as who is the assassin(although not enough for me). It is also very dramatic especially the dangerous scenes like where you are facing 5 tigers. I feel pretty nervous.

This game really describe every detail of the main chara’s feeling that I feel like I’m going to die after that event all the time… Anyway, I think this game is not going to be easy… It’s a demo though but I think it is longer than most demo I’ve seen and from what I’ve read, this demo has 1 ending which I played to that part. Probably not the real ending and it may be continued in the full game. At least it seems like it can be continued. So it’s actually quite a full fledged game already.

Oh, I have one minor thing about the game. The title page new game, load game etc. selection has words that is very hard to read.

The game download page did not say it’s going to be commercial or free. But it looks like commercial graphics. And the demo is not done like to promote a commercial whole game. Rather, the demo is made based on the progress.

Game here (Chinese Traditional but play on Chinese Simplified windows environment):
http://blog.sina.com.cn/s/blog_78de087c01013rec.html
The zip file has password which is the long red line below the download link(copy only 1 line!).

the suiters

What is the Weird Assasin and Snobbish Noble plotting for Ah San?

background

Lots of nice looking backgrounds

the suiters

Map, there's a city map too