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Does one "play" visual novels or "read" them?:

 1 GG Crono, Sat, 14th Jan '12 11:47:38 AM from Waterbury, Connecticut
The Torterra Moves!
Just wondering. I'm never sure what term to use. They're technically video games but there's very seldom much active gameplay in them.
"Honesty is the best policy but insanity is a better defense."
 2 Clarste, Sat, 14th Jan '12 12:22:03 PM Relationship Status: Non-Canon
Three Steps
I would say "read" but I don't really pay attention to what term others use.

I use either. I think I use 'play' more frequently when talking to people who don't read them much and the opposite with those who do.

 4 Kitsune Zeta, Sat, 14th Jan '12 12:24:13 PM from somewhere else
Not-So-Sane fox
"Pure" visual novels would be more "read" than "played"

As for the rest, it depends on where on the scale of "simulation vs Novel" they lie on.
HEY! STOP POKING MY TAILS! <@.@>
Maelstrom
They're technically interchangeable, but I think "read" fits better.
 6 dorkatlarge, Sat, 14th Jan '12 1:15:33 PM from in front of SNES Relationship Status: Giving love a bad name
'90s fanboy
Kitsune Zeta is correct. On the scale of Story-to-Gameplay Ratio, many visual novels since the late 1990s contain little to no complex gameplay. You can safely describe them as entertainment to be read rather than played.

There is a lesser known category called "interactive adventure game." In visual novels such as Three Sisters Story, Snatcher, Yu-No, and the Maison Ikkoku licensed game for the TG-16, the player is constantly asked to take actions (look, talk, move), giving the game a bit more gameplay. It's slightly similar to Interactive Fiction. This style seems to have faded away after the mid 1990s, though it still shows up in a few recent games, such as the Phoenix Wright series and Hotel Dusk: Room 215.

If the player often has to work on stats, manipulate schedules, solve puzzles, etc... then you're probably dealing with a hybrid genre game. The "other gameplay elements" section of the VNDB covers a wide variety of alternative visual novels.

Well, in a certain sense, you also "play" a disc in the DVD player, or play a piece of music on an instrument, so we could also say that you "play" a VN, even if they are not video games.

After all, you don't really just "read" them either, you also watch and listen to them.

It even just bugs me when people say that they "read" a comic book. We would need a verb for that, too. Luckily, V Ns already have this one due to their gaming origins.

 8 neobowman, Sat, 14th Jan '12 3:29:39 PM from Unidentified Proxy Relationship Status: Tsundere'ing
つ ◕_◕ ༽つ HELIX
I use both. Don't really care.

奇跡の魔女
Either way is fine with me. I lean more towards "read" though.
MAL || vndb || Blog
I think lumping the medium in with games is part of why it's still so unknown, so I try to say "read."
 11 entropy 13, Mon, 16th Jan '12 8:31:26 AM from Somewhere only we know. Relationship Status: Drift compatible
わからない
I prefer "interact." LOL
I'm reading this because it's interesting. I think.
Whiskey, Tango, Foxtrot, over.
[up]This feel even more incorrect then 'play'.

Maelstrom
Technically, you "interact" with everything! I am interacting with the reply function to post this message!

Also it feels still and robotic and oppressive.
[up][up]Yeah, the whole point of V Ns not being video games, is that they aren't that interactive.

奇跡の魔女
Well, they're still interactive fiction, though.
MAL || vndb || Blog
I lean towards "read" because I think it's more correct, but since I habitually associate them with video games, "play" slips through sometimes.
2{3[9;3,9[7,3[5[9[6:8[6,1;7,8[1,1;2[1;
^^Except for the ones that aren't.
 18 Firebert, Tue, 17th Jan '12 10:43:23 PM from Somewhere in Illinois
That One Guy
It's a Choose Your Own Adventure, I suppose. With music.
 19 Anarchy, Wed, 18th Jan '12 8:10:26 AM from Perak, Malaysia
just a medicine seller
Do you think it would make a huge difference in popularity if they were marketed as books - just with a little extra? A little girl acquaintance I have saw me playing Umineko and asked me if I was reading a picture book, haha.

[up] Maybe, but so many have porn that it's almost hopeless.

Oh, and I don't thing I've ever read a picture book that trolls like Umineko.
 21 Anarchy, Wed, 18th Jan '12 8:16:40 AM from Perak, Malaysia
just a medicine seller
I really enjoyed Bernkastel's game in Episode 8 of Umineko, and I can really see myself enjoying mysteries/logic puzzles that presented themselves in that format. Wonder if that could become a popular gaming format for mystery stories that actively encourage players to solve it. I feel like a lot of mystery games nowadays follow the adventure gaming format, while Bernkastel's game was pretty much pure logic and reasoning, which might be attractive for mystery-solving enthusiasts.

If I ever finish the one I'm working on (that'll be years from now, but it'll happen eventually), I'm definitely marketing it more as an unusual ebook than as a game.
 23 ozaniel, Mon, 23rd Jan '12 2:00:16 PM from Yeşilköy, İstanbul
why?
I prefer the verb "read" but unconciously I mostly use "play". I think both verbs don't fit to the unique situation of visual novels but it doesn't bother me that much.
My hatoful Monster Girlfriend is the President Ecstasy: Higurashi After in Summer (All ages memorial edition)
奇跡の魔女
Clearly, we must make a new verb.
MAL || vndb || Blog
 25 Anarchy, Mon, 23rd Jan '12 7:58:02 PM from Perak, Malaysia
just a medicine seller
"Preay"? :D

Total posts: 41
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