i bothered logging into this place for the first time in a year, so i'm gonna make myself post at least halfheartedly in this topic. the reasons for this are not clear to me at the present time, though this might change by the time this post has completed.
i just finished yakuza: like a dragon. more specifically, i actually bothered to finish the ENTIRETY of the yakuza series over the course of a couple years, all eight fucking games. maybe this information is pretty public knowledge now, but it's really pretty shocking how good that entire series of games is. i remember first hearing about them years ago and being pretty quick to just dismiss them as just another grand theft auto clone that nobody needed. hell, maybe it even was like that at first, i've only played the remastered versions of the game's earlier entries, but that's not something i can say about the series anymore. i'm hesitant to talk them up as some sort of creative masterpiece or something, but they're really a surprisingly nice series of games. pretty earnestly funny, and with a story that really takes its subject matter surprisingly seriously, and goes in directions you wouldn't expect a series of yakuza stories to go. gets a little hammy at times, but that's about the extent of criticisms i could muster for the series. it's fun, consistent, and very often great stuff.
and like a dragon is no exception. for the hell of it, they decided to reinvent the series as a jrpg, and it actually really works. it's not what i would consider an UTTERLY FANTASTIC rpg really, they were a little too preoccupied with the transition to the rpg system and the story slightly suffers for it, at least compared to some of the other, more impressive entries in the entire series. still a nice, well-meaning, fun game though. it's kinda like what persona 5 would have been like if that fucking cat wasn't there constantly making you go to sleep.
beyond that, i ended up falling down the goddamn rabbit hole of visual novels after playing steins;gate. you can probably scroll up and see where that happened. i figured i was missing out on something special after playing stuff like steins;gate and the zero escape series, and this ended up being correct. i distinctly remember storming around the internet back in the day, generally pissed off that nobody out there was bothering to try telling compelling stories in the whole game medium, since there's been room for that from the very beginning. but i didn't really think it was something that would ever happen beyond the occasional brief, nearly-unplayable douglas adams cameo and that we'd otherwise just get stuck with a billion call of duty games with the occasional post apocalyptic rpg that has surprisingly little to actually say about anything, least of all the actual notion of apocalypse. but i was wrong, actually. a couple pretty goddamn great writers snuck into the medium under this visual novel guise and actually wrote a couple pretty great stories. go fucking figure. so i started playing them a couple years ago, figuring i'd run out of really good ones pretty damn quick. i didn't.
because i'm such a fucking champion of the people, and if you've read this far into my post you must be at least vaguely curious, i'll even list a couple that i thought were legitimately excellent experiences, far better than anything i thought i'd ever live to see come out of videogames, or hell, even most movies and television shows i've been finding. maybe this will be useful to somebody, i dunno. most of these fucking things are over a decade old, and i'm really disappointed that i'm just now finding them. i wish i had somebody to force this shit on me, particularly those visual novels that look fucking atrocious but are actually surprisingly wonderful experiences. so i'm doing that for you, in large part because i'm kinda pissed off that none of you fuckers told me to go play umineko, which every person with an even peripheral interest in game writing absolutely needs to experience immediately.
The House in Fata Morgana
Umineko No Naku Koro Ni
428: Shibuya Scramble
and yeah, i know, some of these look fucking awful. you don't have to say it, i already know. actually, most of them, at first glance, look completely terrible. like half the damn list were games i picked up on a steam sale and then only played reluctantly during a period of excruciating boredom, usually because the reviews were so overwhelmingly positive that i wanted to prove to myself that they couldn't be that good. but each of these are goddamn excellent stories and i actually fucking hate your guts if you have a negative opinion about any of them. especially the house in fata morgana. i REALLY fucking hate you if you have a negative opinion of that one.
i still don't know why i made this post and lost interest like seventeen times when i was writing it. i came this far, so i might as well hit the post button. doesn't matter either way, there isn't a soul alive that's actually gonna read this unless i force the link on dada because he is TOTALLY DEFINITELY not completely sick of me losing myself in this ecstatic fugue whenever steins;gate is ever even suggested.