The anti-hero’s journey – discussing Soukou Akki Muramasa

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装甲悪鬼村正
https://vndb.org/v2016
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Soukou Akki Muramasa, also known as Full Metal Daemon Muramasa, has a bit of a reputation in the eroge scene. Written by Narahara Ittetsu (Hanachirasu) and developed/published by Nitroplus, Muramasa is considered by many to be one of the greatest greats of its genre, a work that stands as a shining example of complex, meaningful storytelling through the medium of visual novels. It’s a game that tackles powerful themes and proceeds to explore them in breathtaking detail with the help of a large cast of multifaceted characters; Narahara’s tale is one of politics and warfare, of justice and vengeance, sin and penitence – and it’s the kind of eye-opener everyone needs to experience at least once.

This is a work that excites me and ignites my passion in ways few other things can, and if I’m able to convey at least a tiny fraction of that excitement through this post, I will have succeeded in what I set out to do.

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[Review] Bravely Second: End Layer

ブレイブリーセカンド エンドレイヤー
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Okay, so imagine playing a classic turn-based Final Fantasy game and there’s this boss that’s giving you a hard time. But then you go ZA WARUDO and shove your battleaxe up its ass (blade first) while time itself grinds to a halt. And then there’s gravy and puns and Chelly sings a really badass song four times in a row to make sure you learn the lyrics and can sing along with her. You know what, I take it all back, please don’t actually imagine any of this because it’s a pretty terrible and awfully confusing summary of Bravely Second, which, by the way, is the sequel to a game I’ve never played because lol whoops. But don’t worry, I still enjoyed it quite a bit! As it turns out, it actually works reasonably well as a standalone title.

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[Review] Ryoshuu Ichiba – Wana ni Hamerareta Elf no Onna Shoukou

https://vndb.org/v6688
虜囚市場~罠に嵌められたエルフの女将校

Look, I know I could’ve played the new Valkyria Chronicles game and had a grand old time winning wars and the like, but then, like a bolt of lightning, inspiration struck me. I suddenly recalled this one eroge from the distant, prehistoric era of 2011, forged in the fires of Black Lilith; a game that also happens to feature tanks and cute girls in military outfits, not entirely unlike Valkyria Chronicles. Now, unlike Valkyria Chronicles, though, the girls in this one focus their efforts not on tank driving, military tactics and other such balderdash, but the noble art of taking dicks up the pooper. And that fact, my friends, makes this the superior product as far as I’m concerned.

Anyway, without further ado, allow me to present to you today’s review specimen, titled “Ryoshuu Ichiba: Wana ni Hamerareta Elf no Onna Shoukou” AKA “Captive Market” AKA “Elves und Panzer: The Pleasure of Being Cummed Inside”.

Okay, so I might have made that last one up.

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[Review] Tales of the Abyss

テイルズ オブ ジ アビス
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Despite its severe issues with backtracking and overall pacing, Tales of the Abyss is still, I would say, one of the most consistently enjoyable and well-made titles in the franchise that genuinely feels like a complete package with tight combat mechanics, a dramatic, twisty-turny plot, memorable characters and environments with a satisfying degree of visual polish and variety. I mean, sure, the Tales franchise is kind of the McDonalds of JRPGs in a sense, and for the most part Abyss is no different in that regard, but it still manages to be one of the juiciest, most succulent and content-rich burgers on the menu.

Hello and welcome to gareblogs, where we make food analogies at every opportunity we get. Please enjoy your stay.

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[Review] Tales of Legendia

テイルズ オブ レジェンディア
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Its strange cocktail of likable, well-developed characters, tedious gameplay, a unique setting and a number of baffling design decisions make Tales of Legendia probably one of the most divisive and controversial entries in the series, and while the characters mostly worked for me and made the oft-frustrating journey one ultimately worth soldiering through, I’m also pretty damn sure that I’m never, ever, replaying this game. Because holy shit does it have a boner for recycling all its content and throwing it back into your face.

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