12 Days of Visual Novel Reviews – Day 11: Sekien no Inganock
Sekien no Inganock -What a Beautiful People- was the first visual novel in Sakurai Hikaru’s steampunk series that I got to experience, as it was the first one to receive an English translation.
Sekien no Inganock is set in a dystopian city which is supposedly very different from the outside world. 10 years ago, all of the city’s residents started mutating into something else. At the present time, the game’s protagonist is one of the very few people who still looks fully human.
The main reason I started reading Sekien no Inganock was because I wanted to find out whether I liked Sakurai’s writing or not. I wasn’t disappointed, but Sakurai seems to write in a distinct style and I haven’t really had exposure to anything similar before so it was hard to for me to be completely sure of my opinion yet.
The game follows an episodic format. What’s interesting to note, is that at the end of each chapter the protagonist defeats that chapter’s enemy in exactly the same way, even down to the text being copy-pasted. Not that this is bad or anything, as the writing itself isn’t bad so I didn’t really mind that I had to keep reading the same thing.
As for the story itself, I’m not familiar with the steampunk genre at all, so once again it makes it hard for me to have a proper opinion. Honestly the actual story is fine, even if there is a decent amount of filler content during some of the middle chapters.
As for characters, I think Sakurai is supposed to be known for writing good characters with believable motivations. Which is probably true, but unfortunately I only ended up really liking a few of the characters in Sekien no Inganock.
I’m not sure about the rest of the steampunk series, but for Sekien no Inganock at least, the h-scenes are very different from the standard. I’d probably be correct in saying that the h-scenes are among the most objectively tasteful and well-written of any eroge(?).
Instead of the usual examples where half the dialog is the heroine moaning or whatever, the writing itself is written in a way that no one would even do a double take if they were to read it in a regular novel.
Even the art itself is more conservative than most eroge, with the only nudity being shown being bare breasts, which left it so the game didn’t even have to add mosaics at all.
So this was definitely a new experience for me on many levels, with the genre, prose, structure, character writing, and even the h-scenes being noticeably different from what I am used to.
I did enjoy Sekien no Inganock and it certainly was appealing enough for me to want to check out more, but I have a slight feeling that the steampunk series might not be for me (hopefully I am wrong though as there was definitely some aspects that I’m interested in exploring further).
- Interesting dystopian setting.
- Fitting music.
- Characters are quite weirdly designed but have a strange charm.
- Writing style was different to what I was used to, but it was refreshing.
- H-scenes are considerably well-written all things considered.
- I’m not really a fan of Liar-soft’s artwork from what I have seen. (It does have its own appeal though so who knows what I will think in the future.)
- Maybe a bit slow during the middle.
- Still not sure about some of the repetitive segments yet.
On a related note, Gahkthun came out today. Despite not having read it, I’ve heard it is one of the best visual novels that has been translated into English so I’ll happily recommend it to people. In any case, it looks much more appealing to me than either of the other games in the steampunk series that have been translated and I am looking forward to when I get a chance to be able to read it.
Posted on December 24, 2015, in Reviews and Impressions, Visual Novels and tagged 12 Days of Christmas, Liar-soft, Sakurai Hikaru, Sekien no Inganock -What a Beautiful People-, Steampunk, Support Gahkthun!. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.