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  1. #1

    Ayakashibito Review by OneManArmy

    This review doesn't contain any major spoilers, so feel free to read.




    Description
    Quote Originally Posted by VNDB
    In face of human technological advancement during the Meiji Restoration, the youkai of Japan were forced to make a hard decision:
    1) To remain as youkai and watch over the land
    2) To return to the netherworld
    3) To give up their power and status as youkai and live amongst humans.

    While there were some that chose otherwise, the majority of the youkai decided it was best to become human. It was tough, but as time passed these youkai were able to blend in with the human world and live peacefully amongst them.

    However, blood is thicker than water. The offspring of these youkai displayed the powerful abilities of their ancestors in times of great anxiety, often manifesting in horrible and dangerous ways, and were labeled by society as monsters. Officially their condition was named "Acquired Systemic Special Heredity variety Syndrome", or "ASSHS" for short and treated as a non-contagious illness, but the common people began to refer to them as Jinyous (half-youkai) nevertheless.

    Of these Jinyous, most were sent to Kamizawa City: an isolated urban area walled off from the rest of Japan to keep all the Jinyous together and away from the human population. However, the ones that were deemed especially dangerous were sent to a medical facility on an uncharted island near the shores of Japan where they would be under constant surveillance.

    Takabe Ryouichi was one of those who were sent to said island at the age of five. This is a story about him along with the girl called Suzu, his only friend on the island, escaping to Kamizawa city to live a normal life. What they didn’t expect was that Suzu carried a secret that attracted much unwanted attention…

    Art
    Before I'm going to say anything about the art I want to mention that this is the first review I wrote since ages and writing it felt surprisingly good. Anyway, the art is definitely not outstanding and the backgrounds are from time to time a little bit plain but overall it's pretty well done. What I really liked though were the facial expressions of the characters because I could clearly feel how much love the artist put even into little details and especially Suzu was sometimes just too fucking kawaii :3


    ^But even her cuteness wasn't enough to let me forget about some weird looking CGs...

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    Music
    I really wonder what's the best way to describe the music of the game...


    ^One of the few moments when she's cute...

    Well, there you have it. The music is so lala which means in english so-so. There are like two or three tracks that are somewhat rememberable but the rest is mostly mediocre and so I didn't pay any attention to the music while playing the game. Then again, the music wasn't annoying so I guess that's a good thing.

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    Characters : Kisaragi Soushichi


    He's the protagonist of Ayakashibito and a very interesting guy. He may cries a lot but at the same time he has the potential to turn into a bad ass. Unfortunately he rarely uses that potential and so he ends up being your usual kind and forgiving protagonist that would say "Sorry that I dirtied your knife" after you failed to stab him.

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    Kisaragi Suzu


    The main heroine of the game and one of the most stubborn heroines I've ever seen. At least she shares my view on Soushichi being way too forgiving. She's also quite the tsundere and tends to ruin your entire day if you say something wrong. She can be cute though but only if you handle her with utmost caution. Sadly she was a rather unintersting character who exactly behaved like I thought she would. Isn't that called predictable or something? Oh whatever.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Antonina Antonovna Nikitina


    Also called Tonya because of obvious reasons. She's your usual tsundere with a slight tendency to cause other people trouble, for fun of course. At the beginning she is presented as a rather calm and stoic character but this fastly changes during the game.

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    Ichinotani Touko


    Touko is a weird case because her personality is really not that special. Basically she's just an average girl (I'm not talking about her abilities) but that's exactly the reason why was the most realistic character (once again, only her personality) of the game. At least I was able to sympathize with her fairly easy.

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    Ichinotani Shuugen


    Touko's older brother and all in all a pretty cool guy. Usually he's very relaxed, calm and a person of words but he can also fuck you up if you provoke him too much. He's like the better protagonist of the game lol.


    ^Uuuuuuhhhh...stop being so cool~

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    Iizuka Kaoru


    She's the commander of a special organization that I don't want to tell you about. Let's say she and Soushichi share some memories and she hates herself because of various stuff that happened. That's why she kinda turned into a cold killer who doesn't even care what she's order to do because she lost her will to live.

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    Kuki Youkou


    The guy who teached the protagonist how to fight. Now he's also a member of that secret organizazion and does stuff. Cool. Also bad ass of the game.

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    Kounen Ichibee


    An awesome monk who's so awesome that I'll still list him despite him being an unimportant, but awesome, side character. Fuck this guy is awesome.

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    Touko's Route
    The first route I played and probably the one I liked the most which is weird because the true route is supposed to be the game's strongest point but whatever. In this route Soushichi turns into a fucking bad ass and gives everyone a very detailed private lesson about the fragility of the human body. And it felt so good to not see him crying for once. God that route was amazing.

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    Tonya's Route
    Her route was in my eyes the weakest one because they built up a lot of action and tension but fucked up when everything was revealed. I also didn't like how Tonya behaved in most parts of the route and Soushichi was again way too forgiving.

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    Kaoru's Route
    A route that I enjoyed a lot because it felt, how to say it, adult? It was just that the route focused more on story progression than on the interaction between the characters. The other routes spend more time on showing the love between protagonist and heroine, which isn't bad but in each route a lot of shit happens and it feels kinda weird to see the couple prioritizing their relationship over solving the problem asap.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Shizu's Route - True Route
    Her route was a mixture of being interesting, being emotional and being dissappointing. It was interesting because a lot of questions were finally answered (be sure to check out all the endings), emotional because around the middle I could really feel with the characters and dissappointing because...



    ...NOT OF HER BODY but the ending was a large pile of elephant shit. Sorry but that fight was unbelievable boring and didn't fit into the world.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Ayakashibito is a game which has many strong parts but it wasn't able to suck me in. Especially the climax of each route was a letdown. Sometimes I was even imagining how cool the story could continue but then they throw a ridiculous solution right into my face, mostly Soushichi endless power of forgiving people. It was still worth the time.



    7,7/10
    Last edited by OneManArmy; 08-25-2014 at 03:03 PM.
    We all know that light travels faster than sound. That's why certain people appear bright until you hear them speak.

  2. #2
    i finished this game quite recently.
    I agree with your opinion on Art.
    For music, i think the only music i really liked was the music at number 16(in the bgm list) - Noderabou. The first half is totally badass. Rest of them range from bearable to forgettable. It had only 1 ending song that was played in all routes, that i could not skip.
    Suzu was actually my favorite character this game. I found her cuteness overwhelming, but it was her mature sister act and the kindness that she showed to Soushichi that i really liked. That, or i just liked her masturbation scene and i'm giving excuses..*ahem*. Soushichi and suzu were like the perfect couple, they suited each other really well.

    Rest of the characters were pretty cliche or one dimensional. Shuggen was one such character, he always gave off the "bro" vibe and was perfect. I'm surprised you didn't mention the instructor for their school, I liked that guy(when he wasn't absent)

    I didn't really like the Monk or his brother, or the sisters. There just wasn't enough material on him. To me, he was just bad guy#3. His scene with Rena or Touko didn't move me either.

    I think they portrayed the emotional aspects of this vn really well. The characters were cliched, and maybe the story was a bit predictable, but it was well executed. Its like you know what is going to happen next, yet you feel quite sentimental/emotional when it does happen. Souschi as the protagonist was a catalyst for this, i think i really liked him despite his flaws.

    I liked the lore part of the visual novel, it was simple and engaging..and really really short. Seriously, the visual novel was kinda short..maybe its the slice of life scenes that took up a lot of it. I wanted more action. When it got really interesting, bam, it skips to the ending after giving a status message of what happened(you know which route i'm talking about)..i dislike that.
    As you said, the ending of true route was really disappointing. That fight scene was terrible. Kaoru was a disappointment too..she is portrayed as a "Cold hard killer", but we never get to see that part of her.

    Overall, i think this visual novel was certainly one of the better ones i've played till date. I remember that my computer stopped working at some point, and i was really sad that i couldn't play this vn for sometime.
    Last edited by pramit; 06-11-2014 at 12:38 AM.
    Happiness is like a butterfly which, when pursued , is always beyond our grasp, but, if you sit down quietly, may alight upon you - NANTHANIEL HAWTHORNE

    My Visual Novel list

    Spoiler:

  3. #3
    Veteran Member Gerard the Lone Wolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OneManArmy View Post
    Anyway, the art is definitely not outstanding and the backgrounds are from time to time a little bit plain
    This is a 2005 game, like YMK and Sharin. It's “old and dated”. :P


    Quote Originally Posted by pramit View Post
    The characters were cliched, and maybe the story was a bit predictable, but it was well executed.
    Yea, I agree. And I believe Ixrec describe it perfectly in his review too.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ixrec Ayakashibito Review
    Sometimes nailing the execution is more important than being original.
    ...

  4. #4
    It had only 1 ending song that was played in all routes, that i could not skip.
    True, being allowed to skip the credits would have been so nice. And in my opinion the ending song isn't even that bad but if you literally have to hear it like (how many endings has the game? Six or seven?) a stupid amount of times then it will annoy you, sooner or later.

    Soushichi and suzu were like the perfect couple, they suited each other really well.
    I definitely agree with you there although they don't suit each other in terms of body size. I mean Suzu is on some CGs (especially on those where she stands right beside Soushichi) just too fucking small. Makes it look like Soushichi would date a 6 years old girl.

    I'm surprised you didn't mention the instructor for their school, I liked that guy(when he wasn't absent)
    I only wanted to list the main characters because otherwise I would have to wrote something about that annoying girl with the glasses or that "Welp! I'm going to die" guy. And neither of them plays am important role. I mean sure, they do get some time in one or two routes but they're mostly there for comedy reasons.

    There just wasn't enough material on him. To me, he was just bad guy#3.
    It's just that I really liked his code of honor and how he only cared about the one thing that brings him pleasure, fighting. He was like the only interesting villian of the game but yeah, not enough background informations.

    This is a 2005 game, like YMK and Sharin. It's “old and dated”. :P
    Nah, even an old game can have great art, it depends on how everything works together. I liked the art of Swan Song for example quite a bit and that game is also from 2005. Same goes for ef fairty tale, a 2006 game.
    We all know that light travels faster than sound. That's why certain people appear bright until you hear them speak.

  5. #5
    Veteran Member Nobu's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OneManArmy View Post
    Makes it look like Soushichi would date a 6 years old girl.
    Loli, extreme.

    Quote Originally Posted by OneManArmy View Post
    Swan Song
    Wanted to see that art you mentioned and ended up getting sucked into the description.... Never heard of this til now.


    I put a lot of thought into each of my words,
    if you take the time and try to understand them....
    You will get raped.


  6. #6
    Swan Song is a really interesting game, you should definitely check it out.
    We all know that light travels faster than sound. That's why certain people appear bright until you hear them speak.

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