Tag Archives: Visual Novel

Haven Reviews: Herald

 All good stories have a start and Herald starts with a splash, as the main character is drowning, while drooling on as he starts narrate. He eventually wake up in an exotic palace place of sorts, with lush pillows and a wise woman whom want some information. And thus begins the story of the poor waterlogged sod, as he recalls his epic voyage across the seven seas.

Herald is a fairly competent put together adventure game. With a pleasant to look at, complimented by a very colorful art direction and a handful of colorful characters. Which fills Herald with life and charm. The point and click part is a great departure from the way most story heavy games deals with events. After all it will get a bit boring to listen to the people going on and on. That being said, there is a lot of voice acted dialogue and much text to be expected.

For some very questionable reason our illustrious leader, decided to hand me this review copy. Despite my issues with how slow the story progress. Which is very ironic coming from someone who has played through Final fantasy 8 several times and most of the Metal Gear Solid games. Then again this is a purely subjective point of view.

The voice actors does a fairly decent job and competent job, when bringing the emotional range of the characters to life. At least for the most part at time they do talk way too slowly, despite the situation at hand. Even if it brings a certain charm to it all, the dialogue is incredible slow and tedious for the most part.

Herald also sports some lovely drawn cut scenes helps to bring it all to life. Though a combination of fully animated 3d models and several hand drawn scenes. Though dialogue can be a bit awkward, as the one whom is currently talking is shown on the right side of the screen. Much like a muppet, with dramatic eye movement and some facial expressions here and there. However there are not much in the way of mouth animation when anyone talk. It is also very refreshing to see such a varied cast, showing of the fantastic variety of people the world has to offer.

Some animations are a bit hit or miss, sometimes those pesky buggers stand around looking weird and unfocused, while other times people in Herald look like they actually have a purpose. Such as the poor fellow puking at the side of the ship. Or that one crew member swabbing the floor.

A historical inspired dram, with many choices that may or may not have an effect on the story. In between the story events, there are a lot of interactivity, through pointing and clicking. Where objects can be looked at, along with an encyclopedia to find info about almost everything. Some blood and sprinkled with violence is to be expected. But due to the nature of the game, it’s not something that should scar or scare anyone.

Highly recommended for people whom like an intriguing mystery and visual novel storytelling, that’s more than just flashy images and walls of text.

Disclaimer:  We received this game for review purposes only. As such, all views in this article are our own. No money has been exchanged for this.

Njål Sand

Haven Review: Flowers -Le Volume sur Printemps

   “Flowers -Le Volume sur Printemps-“is the first part of a visual novel game set in an all girls missionary school in japan. You follow Suoh Shirahane from her arrival at this school, and in her quest to overcome personal challenges and make friends.

Suoh is a very shy, kind and beautiful girl with a passion for books. Growing up very isolated from other children made her long for friendship. Her choice for joining this school was their friendship program. Where all students will be assigned compatible friends to share dorm rooms with while they live at the school. Suoh tries her best to navigate the social scene to get the friends she desperately wants, which causes her some embarrassment at times. But she learns from these experiences and moves on, and friendships starts to blossom in her life. Being around all the different people at school also has some darker sides, and makes memories of her childhood come back to her throughout the story, and you gradually learn more about Suohs past.

The game is a simple “click your way through” the story, and will also give you opportunities to make decisions that will have an effect on Suohs life.  So you as a player will determine this girl’s path through her time at the school while you make lifelong decisions and solve mysteries, all while fulfilling the responsibilities as a student.

Flowers is a very pretty game, with wonderful art and also with nice background music. They also used voice actors for this game, which makes it even more immersive and interesting to play. If you like anime/manga in a school setting, or you like quality manga art, you might want to give this game a try.

Personally I enjoy this game, but in moderate portions. Playing for too long became a little boring for me, it can be a bit slow, but then again it is a visual novel. But I do find myself wondering what is going happen to Suoh and return to the game to continue her story. I have yet to play many visual novel games, so I cannot compare this to others. But I do enjoy “Flowers”, and I personally would recommend it and feel it is worth buying.

“Flowers -Le Volume sur Printemps-“is the first part of a visual novel game set in an all girls missionary school in japan. You follow Suoh Shirahane from her arrival at this school, and in her quest to overcome personal challenges and make friends.

Suoh is a very shy, kind and beautiful girl with a passion for books. Growing up very isolated from other children made her long for friendship. Her choice for joining this school was their friendship program. Where all students will be assigned compatible friends to share dorm rooms with while they live at the school. Suoh tries her best to navigate the social scene to get the friends she desperately wants, which causes her some embarrassment at times. But she learns from these experiences and moves on, and friendships starts to blossom in her life. Being around all the different people at school also has some darker sides, and makes memories of her childhood come back to her throughout the story, and you gradually learn more about Suohs past.

The game is a simple “click your way through” the story, and will also give you opportunities to make decisions that will have an effect on Suohs life.  So you as a player will determine this girl’s path through her time at the school while you make lifelong decisions and solve mysteries, all while fulfilling the responsibilities as a student.

Flowers is a very pretty game, with wonderful art and also with nice background music. They also used voice actors for this game, which makes it even more immersive and interesting to play. If you like anime/manga in a school setting, or you like quality manga art, you might want to give this game a try.

Personally I enjoy this game, but in moderate portions. Playing for too long became a little boring for me, it can be a bit slow, but then again it is a visual novel. But I do find myself wondering what is going happen to Suoh and return to the game to continue her story. I have yet to play many visual novel games, so I cannot compare this to others. But I do enjoy “Flowers”, and I personally would recommend it and feel it is worth buying.

-Ingelin Gridset

Haven Reviews. Seinarukana – The Spirit of Eternity Sword 2

     Haven Reviews. Seinarukana – The Spirit of Eternity Sword 2

Starting off with a dramatic and quite prophetic dream, the kind that spoils a possible future to prevent. Which ends with our hero murdering some companions and getting impaled on a spear. After this violent nightmare, the hero wakes up hugging the violent bombshell of a slugger. I mean femme fatale, Scratch that. Overly emotional and unstable childhood friend. A complete package, equipped with a very mean and over exaggerated uppercut. Comes complete with it’s own dramatic frame. Because it’s always okay to beat up someone for being mostly innocent. Quite frankly I loathe that type of person. Domestic abuse is not comedy gold. Naturally it starts in Japan, on a Japanese school. A true, tested and generic setting for your average school uniform clad teenager. 

Credits where credits due. The characters looks quite good and has a decent range of emotions. With the expected range of colors, personalities and romantic options. The environment is quite imaginative, with some really stunning locations. Naturally the game comes fully voiced, with great many music scores to set the mood. An impressive amount of effort has been made to actually add some animations and life to the characters, depending on how much action goes on. There is still a lot of tell don’t show and some padding. 

Combat looks quite good indeed. However the resolutions leaves a lot too be desired. It’s very small. The turn based battles take place in a 3d landscape.  The environment here leaves a lot to be desired. Low resolution textures and a lot of clipping. Combat is deceptively simple it seems like. Before combat a team is composed. Based on elemental strength and weakness. Each one is assigned a role as well. Some are good at supporting, while others are good at attacking. Like the main protagonist. All the characters comes loaded with skills. After you engage a fight in Seinarukana, the combat plays out automatically, at least for the early game lot fights. Later it becomes a tad more tactical. Where roles and formations can be switched around. Every now and then there are branching paths, where a series of battles occur in a row. The camera never stops spinning though adn the combat map interface sucks. 

I truly love the ability to, play the game with only using the keyboard. Games that does this is a true treat. I can rapidly skip though the text as well, by holding down Ctrl.  Since there are a lot of endings and choices throughout the story to rigger various events and endings. This comes quite handy. Because the game is around 50 hours long at least, give or take a few. It also depends on the player actual reading speed or if you prefer to listen instead.

 

 

Disclaimer:  We received this game for review purposes only. As such, all views in this article are our own. No money has been exchanged for this.

Njål Sand