Visual Novel

Visual Novel is a anime/manga concept
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A genre of video game popular in Japan that is heavy on story, and characters can make decisions at certain points in the game to affect the story's outcome. Most visual novels are romantic in nature, and many are pornographic, but a variety of genres are available.

Visual Novels simply put are digital novels typically read on a computer. They utilize music, background and character sprite graphics, and occasional effects to enhance the storytelling. Most often times, the interactivity in visual novels is primarily consisting of clicking and reading, and occasionally the player will be given options to choose from that will affect how the story advances. Some visual novels even include an auto-read feature that automatically progresses the text without clicking. Stories in visual novels are about as diverse as anime story lines, and like anime, there are some common reoccurring sub-genres, such as high school romance, Sengoku/Meiji era fiction, magic academies, and survival horror.
 
Just like other video games, most visual novels allow you to save your progress and come back to them whenever, though they don't always let you save at decision points. This feature is most notably useful when trying to avoid a "Bad End" (or possibly even a "Dead End" depending on the kind of story), and is also helpful when trying to unlock special graphics usually called CG's. 
 

CG

CG's are typically higher profile images depicting a major event in the game, and usually do not use character sprite overlays for the duration of their being displayed. Sometimes these may be in a completely different art style from prior scenes, and they may even take an outside perspective from the player's typically first-person character view.
 

Routes

An integral part of visual novels is the concept of "routes". Routes are the various paths of progression the story in a visual novel can take. This can include anything from which girl/guy the main
 A flowchart showing the many possible routes of the visual novel Kagetsu Tohya
 A flowchart showing the many possible routes of the visual novel Kagetsu Tohya
character hooks up with, who lives and dies, and of course, which ending you get to see. Most visual novels have several routes, sometimes with multiple possible endings for each route
 
 

 

Misconceptions

In the west, visual novels are sometimes misleadingly referred to as "dating sims", however visual novels where the primary objective is to hook up with one of the female characters are only a single genre of visual novels and the Japanese refer to them as "Gal Games" (sometimes shortened to galge - ギャルゲー). 
 
Due to their lack of considerable interactivity, it is a common debate in the West whether visual novels can qualify as games. In Japan however, there is a common market distinction between visual novels and action/adventure games, and because of this it is rarely, if at all, discussed there.
General Information Edit
Concept Name Visual Novel
Japanese Name: ビジュアルノベル
Romaji Name: bijuaru noberu
Aliases dating sims
digital novel
1st manga book:
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