Tag Archives: 428 Shibuya Scramble

The MoeGamer 2019 Awards: Ten Years, Ten VNs

The MoeGamer Awards are a series of “alternative” awards I’ve devised in collaboration with the community to celebrate the sorts of things that never get celebrated in end-of-year roundups! Find out more here — and feel free to leave a suggestion on that post if you have any good ideas!

It’s nearly the end of a decade, and you know what that means: looking back over the last ten years to arbitrarily decide what was “best” from that equally arbitrary length of time.

I was just going to do a “games of the decade” sort of affair, but I realised while putting my provisional lists together that I had enough visual novels to do them in their own dedicated, separate list. So the “Ten Years, Ten Games” award will be following next week, and for now let’s talk visual novels!

For each year of (English language) release, I’m picking a visual novel that I found personally significant. This doesn’t mean that it was necessarily the “best” that year had to offer — whatever that means — but it was important to me. So let’s delve in… and note that at the time of writing, there are holiday sales going on all over the Internet, so you can pick up many of these for pretty cheap right now!

And the winners are…

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The MoeGamer 2019 Awards: The “Are You Lost?” Award

The MoeGamer Awards are a series of “alternative” awards I’ve devised in collaboration with the community to celebrate the sorts of things that never get celebrated in end-of-year roundups! Find out more here — and feel free to leave a suggestion on that post if you have any good ideas!

The next award comes courtesy of frequent commenter ASD. They want to know the five characters (from games I played this year) that I’d take on my desert island survival team.

I didn’t write about it this year, but I rather enjoyed the short-form anime Are You Lost? (aka ソウナンですか? Sōnan desu ka?) from the summer anime season. It was one of a number of recent pieces of Japanese popular media that had a distinctly “educational” component, and I can’t help but think of it when contemplating this award.

Of course, it wasn’t a video game and thus is largely irrelevant to the discussion we’re about to have, but it was an entertaining anime that is worth checking out. Anyway. I digress.

And the winner is…

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Waifu Wednesday: Maria Osawa

Before we bid 428: Shibuya Scramble a fond farewell from the Cover Game spotlight, I wanted to give some love to one of its main characters.

Since many of the articles on MoeGamer deal with the core narrative themes of the games under the microscope, I don’t typically bother with spoiler warnings. However, in this instance, I will preface today’s article with one, since… well, to explain why would probably in itself constitute a major spoiler for 428: Shibuya Scramble. So consider yourself warned.

Armed with that knowledge, then, let’s spend some time with Maria Osawa!

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The MoeGamer Podcast: Episode 18 – Beakf*cker Gets Horizontal

Hello! Welcome, once again, to The MoeGamer Podcast, featuring my erotic baritone (so I’m told) along with the fine pipes of my good friend Chris Caskie of MrGilderPixels.

The MoeGamer Podcast is available in several places. You can subscribe to my channel on YouTube to stay up to date with both the video versions of the podcast and my weekly videos (including the Atari A to Z retro gaming series); you can follow on Soundcloud for the audio-only version of the podcast; you can subscribe via RSS to get the audio-only version of the podcast in your favourite podcast app; or you can subscribe via iTunes. Please do at least one of these if you can; it really helps us out!

Or you can hit the jump to watch or listen to today’s episode right here on MoeGamer.

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428: Shibuya Scramble – In Search of the Truth

This article is one chapter of a multi-part Cover Game feature!
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Many games these days make a point of providing some sort of “added value” over and above their base experience. Be it a postgame chapter with stiff challenges, post-launch DLC or a New Game Plus mode, these features are typically there to keep you playing even after you see the credits roll.

Visual novels, as an offshoot of video games, aren’t typically known for having substantial postgame content other than the “metagame” that multi-route titles have: seeing all the possible narrative routes and collecting all the CG illustrations. But, as we’ve already established fairly comprehensively in this feature already, Spike Chunsoft’s 428: Shibuya Scramble isn’t a game to do things… “conventionally”.

Oh, sure, the base game has 85 “bad ends” to collect (with a series of trophies and achievements attached to these, encouraging you to seek them out rather than avoid them — and it’s worth doing so because several are very odd indeed!) as well as a “normal” and a “true” ending, but once you’ve seen the main narrative through to a satisfactory conclusion, you’re not done. Not by a surprisingly long shot.

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428: Shibuya Scramble – A Question of Identity

This article is one chapter of a multi-part Cover Game feature!
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Well, it’s time to unravel some of the mysteries at the core of 428: Shibuya Scramble. And there are plenty of them!

Not only that, but “beating” the game isn’t the end, either; once you’ve seen the “normal” or “true” endings, there are other, more deviously hidden scenarios to track down… but that’s a tale for another day. Today, we’re going to focus on the how the game explores its various protagonists and one of its most important core themes.

Let’s step back into Shibuya, then… the beating heart of one of the world’s busiest cities.

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428: Shibuya Scramble – The Mechanics of Storytelling

This article is one chapter of a multi-part Cover Game feature!
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When we’re talking about conventional games — particularly today’s games — it’s important to consider them from a wide variety of perspectives.

Typically, we look at a game from several different angles: the way it’s presented through its sights and sounds; the way it plays through its mechanics; and, where applicable, how it handles its story.

When contemplating visual novels, the balance tends to be a little different. We tend to up the focus on narrative considerably, and in many cases mechanics don’t enter the picture at all — many visual novels simply don’t have any! That is, unless you’re 428: Shibuya Scramble, in which case your narrative and mechanics combine together to produce something exceedingly interesting…

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