Tag Archives: themes

SeaBed: What You Leave Behind

I reviewed this visual novel over at Nintendo Life — please go support my work over there, then join me back here to delve into the narrative in more detail!


SeaBed from Paleontology Soft is a kinetic novel that first released in 2015. It was localised for PC two years later, much to the delight of Western yuri fans, and in early 2020, it got released on Nintendo Switch, too.

It is, not to put too fine a point on it, an absolutely masterful work of fiction. It’s peaceful and calming yet melancholy, and the evocative, descriptive writing gives the whole experience a pleasantly mature feeling that is a far cry from noisy, chaotic anime hijinks. Not that there’s anything wrong with noisy, chaotic anime hijinks, mind, but sometimes you just want a bit of quiet contemplation to mull over.

So let’s mull it over together, because there’s a lot to talk about. There are likely to be some spoilers ahead, but I’ll try and keep major ones to a minimum, because you should experience this for yourself!

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Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana – Narrative, Themes and Characterisation

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Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana is something of an outlier in the Atelier series as a whole, as we’ve already talked about.

Rather than adopting the established structure of “struggling alchemist works in a workshop to craft items, also there are adventures” it inverts this format to “struggling adventurer explores to discover mysteries of alchemy, also there is crafting”.

This change of structural focus gives the narrative scope to be a much more epic affair than many of the other games in the series — but at the same time it doesn’t abandon one of the series’ core principles. Let’s take a closer look.

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Waifu Wednesday: Veola

One of the my favourite characters in Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana is Veola, the seemingly rather standoffish owner of the magic shop in Kavoc.

Veola’s sidequest is technically optional, but like most of the “shopkeeper quests” throughout Atelier Iris: Eternal Mana, it’s hard not to get swept along in the soap opera of her life — and how she relates to the other people around her, including protagonist Klein, his party members, bartender Norman and numerous others.

So let’s take a closer look at this rather closed-off young woman and figure her out a bit. Some spoilers ahead!

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LAMUNATION!: Keeping It In The Family

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Well, it’s been quite a journey so far, hasn’t it? Between Lamune’s dramatic reversal of fortunes and Iris and Rayla’s somewhat open, fluid views on sexuality, one certainly cannot call White Powder’s visual novel LAMUNATION! “boring”.

You haven’t seen anything yet, though, because we’re about to explore probably the strangest and most chaotic narrative path of all: that of protagonist Luna’s sister Corona.

We’ve got incest. We’ve got magic. We’ve got musings on the nature of visual novels as a medium. Grab a cold Red Bull, strap yourself in and hold on tight, ’cause we’re going in.

Some NSFW stuff ahead!

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LAMUNATION!: Sisters Are Doing It For Themselves

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Central to LAMUNATION!, whichever narrative route you choose to explore, is the setting of the Cherry Crown Diner.

A diner inspired by 1950s Americana, the Cherry Crown serves as something of a social hub for the main cast — and, in pretty much all of the paths through the game, ends up becoming a successful landmark and tourist attraction in the unusual corporate-run city of Saint Aria.

There are a lot of interesting things about the Cherry Crown Diner — not least of which are the charismatic, chaotic twin sisters Iris and Rayla, who run it in their parents’ seemingly perpetual absence. That seems like as good a place as any to continue our exploration of this delightfully delirious visual novel!

Some NSFW stuff ahead!

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LAMUNATION!: Welcome to Youkoso Saint Aria

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LAMUNATION! is an absolute fever dream of a visual novel. It’s one of the most gleefully, joyfully chaotic narrative experiences I’ve ever sat through.

One thing I found particularly interesting about it was the fact that depending on the order in which you explore the three main narrative routes, you either start with material that is relatively easy to digest… or just throw yourself right in to the insanity.

The choices I made, as it happens, resulted in a gradual escalation of chaos — so that’s how we’ll take a look at things over the course of the next few articles.

Some NSFW content ahead.

Continue reading LAMUNATION!: Welcome to Youkoso Saint Aria

Waifu Wednesday: Arnice

With Arnice back in the spotlight in our Warriors All-Stars playthrough, it’s only fair that we give her a bit of love and appreciation for Waifu Wednesday, isn’t it?

Arnice is, if you’re unfamiliar, the protagonist of the excellent Nights of Azure, which was the subject of a Cover Game feature here on MoeGamer back in 2017. It’s a fantastic action RPG with a compelling story, a delightfully operatic tone and some amazing music.

And Arnice is a big part of what makes the game so appealing; she’s a fine protagonist, and fits right in to Warriors All-Stars, too. So let’s take a closer look.

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