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I've played some visual novels recently (well, Digital, Analogue and Don't take it personal to be strict), and I would like to play more of them (good ones, please!)

What I expect:
- nice story, with or without romance, but more story focused than matchmaking
- freeware
- anime/manga-ish

Or a website with a freeware visual novels would be awesome. I'm not geek'd enough yet to pay for such games. :P
Try these :
http://www.desura.com/games/ristorante-amore
http://www.desura.com/games/re-alistair
Post edited October 09, 2012 by ne_zavarj
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keeveek: I've played some visual novels recently (well, Digital, Analogue and Don't take it personal to be strict), and I would like to play more of them (good ones, please!)

What I expect:
- nice story, with or without romance, but more story focused than matchmaking
- freeware
- anime/manga-ish

Or a website with a freeware visual novels would be awesome. I'm not geek'd enough yet to pay for such games. :P
Some of the best ones I've read, of the freeware variety, were apart of a competition called altogether that used to be run years ago. I think there were 3 years of it: 2005,2006, and 2008. There would be a month time period where people would pick a freeware visual novel and translate it. Some of them ended up being really really good. Some... not so much. But it would be a good starting point.

Specific freeware titles I was impressed with would be both narcissu titles. They are both depressing as hell but very much worth the read. There are several more I really enjoyed but can't remember the names of since that was years ago that I read them.

Hope that helps
Thanks for the answers guys, that's a start :)
Katawa Shoujo
You've probably heard of Katawa Shoujo, one of the more recent examples of the genre. Juniper's Knot is another good choice, but it's a kinetic novel (no choices that affect the ending / overall narrative) so that's that. KS is highly romantic in nature, so that might not be what you want.

The Visual Novel Database (VNDB.org) is pretty much the place to research and find new visual novels. ATP Projects (atpprojects.wordpress.com) is another good place to look for story-based titles. Some are really good, some are thoughtful, and some might not be everyone's cup of tea.

Insani.org is where the altogether projects originated for the most part, and where you can find other works like True Remembrance.

Either way, finding good freeware visual novels is not a difficult task. Even the Ren'Ai archive http://www.renai.us/ holds a few gems.
I haven't played it myself and I'm sure you know about it already, but Katawa Shoujo comes to mind

http://katawa-shoujo.com/

Holy shit - 3 of us posted the same recommendation at the same time!
Post edited October 09, 2012 by Asbeau
Winter Shard, Eidolon, Metropolitan Blues, Locked-In, That Cheap And Sacred Thing, Morning Star, GO! Magical Boy and the ones that have already been suggested.

All of these games and many more can be found either here:

http://lemmasoft.renai.us/forums

or here:

http://www.renai.us

I prefer using the lemmasoft forum, since user comments can give you a general idea of a game's quality even when the summary is lacking.

The ones pb1866 mentioned can be found below:

http://www.insani.org/projects.html

Edit: Ninja'd by AquaticIdealist.
Post edited October 09, 2012 by ashwald
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AquaticIdealist: The Visual Novel Database (VNDB.org) is pretty much the place to research and find new visual novels. ATP Projects (atpprojects.wordpress.com) is another good place to look for story-based titles. Some are really good, some are thoughtful, and some might not be everyone's cup of tea
Yeah, Ive found that website but unfortunatelly couldn't find any filter to search only for FREE games.

Thanks for Katawa Shoujo everyone!
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AquaticIdealist: The Visual Novel Database (VNDB.org) is pretty much the place to research and find new visual novels. ATP Projects (atpprojects.wordpress.com) is another good place to look for story-based titles. Some are really good, some are thoughtful, and some might not be everyone's cup of tea
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keeveek: Yeah, Ive found that website but unfortunatelly couldn't find any filter to search only for FREE games.

Thanks for Katawa Shoujo everyone!
Ah, yeah, that's one of the flaws of the site. ATP Projects is all Freeware though, so that should keep you busy for several months! :P
Yeah, I downloaded a few of them and I think that'll be enough for a moment :D

Thanks for the tips, everyone!
No one pays for VNs anyway. >_>

Though the demos which contain the first episodes of Higurashi/Umineko/Rose Gun Days are free and have translation patches IIRC.
Post edited October 09, 2012 by mrcrispy83
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mrcrispy83: No one pays for VNs anyway. >_>

Though the demos which contain the first episodes of Higurashi/Umineko/Rose Gun Days are free and have translation patches IIRC.
Well, this may be my first.

http://www.desura.com/games/eve-burst-error
Post edited March 24, 2013 by the_bard
Katawa Shoujo is the obvious one.Very very good :) (former kickstarter)
Post edited March 24, 2013 by nijuu
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mrcrispy83: No one pays for VNs anyway. >_>

Though the demos which contain the first episodes of Higurashi/Umineko/Rose Gun Days are free and have translation patches IIRC.
They do.. just not for PC VNs ;)

999 and Virtue's Last Reward are fantastic and sold pretty well, but they're on the DS (999), and 3DS/Vita (VLR)
Post edited March 24, 2013 by spoderman