This is more of a talking about because I want to talk about it, rather than being particularly relevant to my art practice.
Tsukihime is a tough visual novel to recommend, mainly because for a visual novel (computer novel) to sell in Japan, it must contain pornographic content, so any japanese visual novel, no matter what it’s about, is almost always going to have R rated content. Thankfully Tsukihime can be patched to remove that content, as it does nothing to push forward the story.
Tsukihime (lit Moon Princess) is basically about the decent from sane normal human, to insane killer. With variations based on the choices you make, but it’s primarily the exploration of the main character Shiki’s mind and it’s unravelling. And it captures this really well, Visual Novels almost always are written in the Second person, but this is written in a hybrid of 1st and 2nd persons. Narrated by the main character shiki, who is you. Seeing so clearly inside the main characters mind, the strong repetitions of words just like many people might think.
One memorable scene in which shiki is trying not to focus on something horrible happening he thinks about the chair infront of him… And proceeds to think about it for nearly 3 pages of writing. It’s not exactly page turning, but the visual sight of just seeing the word chair almost endlessly communicates really well what his mind is going through.
It’s also a vampire fiction, well detailed mythology that put’s twilight to shame, the kind of depth you’d expect from tolkien really, and just as hard to read at points too.
If you are up for a different type of narrative experience, you can’t go wrong with Tsukihime, one of the visual novel classics, and one of the few to sell over 100,000 copies (only ever been sold in japan)
Also, there is a series of games based on what is an unexplored possible story route called ‘Melty blood,’ that feature even more vampires, more blood, and sadly no flowers, it’s almost relevant… Slightly