Sunday, January 26, 2014

VN : Carat - A Genshiken Story, yes, I've been running this blog for a few days, and the response so far has been very positive. I have to start this post with a big thanks to anyone who had supported me - you had my gratitude!

I got asked from one of our members to took this visual novel to the limelight a day ago, and what came to my mind back then is : 'Why not?' Well, Carat : A Genshiken Story has been transforming into a cult-classic among Genshiken ITB members up until now. We had to thank the charming character duo - Gen-tan and Gen-kun - for driving this visual novel into popularity. I mean, who could forgot Gen-tan's mysterious, possessive personality?

The project itself was initiated a year ago by a team of eight who called theirselves 'Carat', consisted of Ariq H. // ariqhad, Rakaputra P. // Rheine, Karina R. // Riesling, and others. This visual novel was originally intended to be an introductory visual novel to Genshiken ITB freshmen - hence, this visual novel is also called as 'VN Pengenalan' (Introductory VN) and has been distributed internally among new Genshiken members.

Even traversing more to the past, Gen-kun and Gen-tan were created as Genshiken ITB's official mascot back then in 2012. At that time, they both weren't visualized yet - it was this visual novel which broke through the imaginair barrier and formed Gen-kun and Gen-tan's visual appearance. More recently, due to its popularity, the GCT stand on Comifuro III (which is closely affiliated with Genshiken ITB) decided to sold a pin with these characters engraved on the surface.

The visual novel's gameplay is rather simplistic and linear, much contradictory to the visual novel I previously talked about  - there were no choice bubbles and special events. The visual novel itself is relatively short, with only (and intended to only be) around ~10-15 minutes of play time - this is due to the visual novel's original intention, which is to be played during the story division's initial freshmen presentation.

The story itself revolves around a freshmen on Institut Teknologi Bandung, who decided (uh... well, let's *just* say so) to join Genshiken ITB during the Open House Unit (OHU) event. It's quite hard to say how the story progresses without spoiling anything too big though, as it's a very short story - I'll just say the story's ending is quite 'surprising'.

Created using Novelty, this visual novel weighs no more than 44 megabytes. Background songs of choice tend to be ambiental-orchestral, with some simple sound effects every here and there. Few things I note are there's no direct way to return to main menu from the game itself - and, probably this is just me, but I can't exit the game without crashing (I'm using Windows 8 personally, though).

I'd like to end this post with an announcement to all Genshiken ITB members that Carat is currently looking for more Genshiken ITB members to join them, so feel free to join or probably just dropping a visit to the group!

Oh, and yes, I do still have some interesting visual novels to write about here in my arsenal. Stay tuned, and have a nice day!

- Nivalyx

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