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Valis: The Downfall of a Franchise

In this modern age of gaming, many of yesteryear’s franchises fall by the wayside, forgotten by all but the most diehard of fans. Until now, Valis had managed to avoid such a fate and had enjoyed so many outings on a plethora of platforms that most people thought it was only a matter of time before it resurfaced again. Finally, we’d get another adventure involving the famed Valis sword and multiple worlds in dire need of rescue, which would herald a new era for the series. Surely, we wouldn’t have to wait long, and Valis would return.

Well, it has…in a sense.

A new Valis game entitled Valis X — Another Destiny was released by Telenet Japan on March 17 for their BB5 game download service in Japan. Developed by a group known as Eants, it’s a brand-new chapter, featuring all the classic characters from the previous adventures seen on the Genesis, Turbo Grafx-16, and SNES. There’s just one teeny, tiny problem:

It’s a hentai game.

That’s right, the once proud quartet of heroines that saved the Spirit World have now been reduced to selling their bodies like common crackwhores. Yuko and company have fallen on hard times, it seems, and have now ventured into that dark territory no one wants to see well-known game characters enter. I, for one, am not a fan of the hentai genre, and sure as hell don’t like the idea of the Valis gang engaging in all kinds of hardcore, sex-driven antics, no matter how well-drawn or…imaginative they may be. It’s bad enough that many classic brands have been turned into weak shadows of their former selves through licensing and watered-down releases, but to actually turn them into porn? That’s pretty low, even for Japan.

Tentacle-Raped Memories

Yeah, I’m sure there are some of you out there ready to remind me that this is nothing new. There have been plenty of

hentai doujinshi involving the series in the past. True, but this particular version is different in one important aspect. See, this latest hentai has been released by the original publisher — Telenet Japan, which is a rare occurrence. Such creations are usually the product of twisted minds among the fan base (and they do exist. Don’t believe me? Check out this Castlevania porn and see for yourself), and to discover that Telenet would stoop to such sorry depths is more than just disheartening, it’s offensive.

The famous heroines that saved several worlds are now engaged in lesbian acts amongst each other, and poor Yuko even gets raped by a plant. Hey, you can’t have hentai without tentacle rape!

How long have Valis fans been clamoring for a new installment? Two whole generations of hardware have passed, and when finally its name is heard once again, this is what we get? This is how the Valis legacy is rewarded? I’m sure that I’m not the only one incensed at this news, and it’s a sad day indeed for us all when companies drag their properties through the mud like this. If this is the depth to which Telenet has fallen, then I’m glad they have exited the U.S. game market. What’s next, Earnest Evans S&M?

As someone already concerned with the gaming industry’s lack of respect for its own heritage and history, I’m especially disappointed to see this sickening turn of events. We seem to have finally made the move from neglect to exploitation, from which there may be no turning back. And Telenet seeks to really milk the hentai genre for all it’s worth, having supposedly planned a total of five of these games before the year ends. Oh tragic irony!

And we wonder why no one takes gaming seriously.

If you’re willing to see your memories shattered and hope in humanity dashed, you can see the official Valis X — Another Destiny page by clicking on the banner below. Be warned: you’re eyes will bleed, and your hair will turn white… unless you’re a hentai fan, which means you’re no doubt drooling already.

Farewell Valis. I Knew Thee Well

What’s probably the most disturbing about all this news is that 2006 is 20th anniversary of Valis, and this is the worst way imaginable to celebrate such a landmark event. Telenet Japan has ruined a perfectly viable franchise by catering to the worst and lowest common denominator. If this is what is to become of those classic games and characters we’ve treasured for so long, then perhaps gaming is deserving of much of the criticism it receives. I know I’ll be hiding my head from now on whenever someone asks me whatever became of Valis

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