9-nine-ここのつここのかここのいろ 9️⃣ Week 10 [END] (Visual Novel Book Club)

This is being read as part of the Visual Novel Book Club. Another VN, BU$TAFELLOWS, is being read at the same time, feel free to join both clubs!

Home Thread Here!

Current week start date: March 3, 2023
Previous week (Week 9)


We’re aiming to read approximately 10-12.5k characters per week! A suitable enough end point will be selected each week (feel free if you have a texthooker and it hasn’t been posted yet!) and posted within the thread. @ccookf has helpfully begun compiling a spreadsheet to display progress through the days:

(To be updated) Progress spreadsheet (contains spoilers, tread carefully)

This week's endpoint: 20k characters.

We’re doing the rest that is left of the VN until the end. It’s a significantly longer week this time, both as willingness from the members reading it to read faster and in preparation for the new reading pace of the coming VNs, but we will have plenty of time while we wait for the voting period and then the purchase period so take as long as you need.

Discussion Guidelines

  • Please use spoiler tags for major events in the current chapter(s) and any content in future chapters.
  • When asking for help, do your best to provide context. Pasted text, screenshots, descriptions, etc. Unlike book clubs we can’t flip to relevant pages, so we may need a little help identifying exactly what is being discussed.
  • Feel totally at ease to ask questions or give your thoughts, any time! Clubs live and die by participation, and asking whatever question you have, no matter how silly it may seem, helps others who are reading it and even the answerer themselves.
  • Have fun, and do your best to interpret anything said with as much good faith as possible :slightly_smiling_face:


  • I’m reading along
  • I have finished this part
  • I’m still reading but haven’t reached this part yet
  • I’m no longer reading

0 voters


Ugg, I did not take the best notes through the end of it all.

story events

As a whole, the characters have been moving along their own development paths which is nice. Even if Yoichi is a pain, seeing him show his concern when it matters is always great. It’s good to see he’s not entirely a joke character and still gets his moments. Similarly, I like how Miyako managed to get so far as to play along with some of Sora’s jokes.

Honestly, I didn’t quite follow the logic Kakeru used to narrow down the killer, but… I did enjoy that he recruited Noa to help them. It’s a bit silly, but I like that they still have some child-like moments. Putting what’s basically a mercenary bodyguard into a life or death situation? A week of fruit parfaits. That’s some serious bargaining right there.

As for the ending itself, I got the impression from one of Sophie’s statements that she would have a new task for them, but the setup seems more like we’re going to follow her into another branch. After all of that at the end I don’t think I could take it if Kakeru and Miyako actually broke up. Their relationship still feels rushed and forced to me, but that doesn’t mean I want to end it.

That post-credits tease was just… seriously? I don’t know how I feel about it. Honestly, I wish they had just left it out. The ending was enough of a blueball situation. It doesn’t feel resolved at all and throwing that on top was just bad. I feel like there’s enough of reason to dig into the following game without adding the extra teaser in the end.

Final thoughts on 9-nine: episode 1

Overall, not bad, not amazing. I’m glad we read this and I don’t feel like it was a large jump up in difficulty over Loopers. I am disappointed that it definitely isn’t standalone. I should have known it was marketing bs, but in the end now I feel like I’m committed to an 750k VN series which isn’t super long, but also not a small amount either.

As far as beginner VN’s go this is pretty solid. I think it has some hit or miss elements, like music being a little excessive in certain scenes or the writing being questionable at times, but overall I think it was fine for what it is. One thing I will give them an A+ for is the pacing and variety of content. I rarely felt bored or like time was being wasted. The ending kind of dragged on, but I blame the cruddy cliffhanger ending for that rather than the actual events.

Another thing that I think was super helpful was the joint E/J translations. To be honest, I think the anime-related fan communities give translations too much crap and are way too nitpicky. I wouldn’t consider the English translation perfect, but it helped me bridge the gap on a lot of troublesome points and gave me some better ideas on how to translate certain phrases or speech patterns (like a lot of Sora’s nonsense :+1:). There were certainly a lot of moments where I’d parse 90% of a sentence and be struggling with a certain word, goof up some basic grammar, or struggle to see past the literal/dictionary translation to get the actual intent of the speech and in that sense I think it was extremely helpful to have. There were times where I’ll admit I felt like I was using it as a crutch, but overall I’m very glad to have had it.

I look forward to reading Episode 2 with yall in the future, assuming we continue with it.

Congratulations to everyone who made it thus far and thanks for joining in the discussion!

Personal thoughts on Japanese + minor health update

I’ve said a few times, but I do feel like I’ve improved a lot with the reading we’ve done. However, I think I’m also at a point where I can feel the pain of kind of having skipped steps. I think I need to go back and read both wider variety of materials (eg. news sources or non-fiction) as well as material targeted at a younger audience. One of the problems I noticed I was having was misinterpreting sentences where nothing was unknown to me. My instincts are leaning towards that being a combination of inexperience and many aspects of my studies not being fully internalized yet. If I had to describe it, I’d say it’s like I’m in the earlier stages of developing my mental stack:


When the writing gets into long/run-on sentences, abstract ideas, or make heavy use of omission I tend to struggle. One of the things I caught myself doing a lot was reading a line in Japanese only to refer to the English log to remember what exactly was being said in recently lines.

In that sense, I think I need to mass consume some easier material alongside of our reading until I can catch up skill wise. At the least I would like to improve my comprehension before we get to reading titles I’ll be more invested in.

As for my health problems I don’t think I gave a proper update. Last week I was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia. A couple of days ago the doctor in charge of my treatment gave me a quick call to tell me to pack my bags expecting to be admitted for at least a month. I won’t get the full details until I get to the clinic on Monday, but I’ll be away from my PC for a while and won’t be participating until I get home. The good news is that the doctor also said I don’t have high risk factors. I don’t really know what that means, but it sounds positive so woohoo!


Hey I just now caught the mention of the health stuff peeking my head in here and that’s so awful to hear; hang in there, I really hope it ends up easily treatable :heart:

This weeks reading

I think I mentioned it a few weeks ago that I started playing the deluxe edition and it has a few new features. One of them is new expressions, I don’t remember seeing Sora do this expression before and I couldn’t help but laugh at how silly it looks.

No idea what she is trying to do with her hand there :joy:

The scene where the MC calls out Sophie to try and talk to them about the 魔眼 user was funny when he had to try and be all nice. ”ソフィ様”. Outside of that, it was good to kind of get more info on the 魔眼 there? Was a surprisingly good catch by the MC figuring out that Sophie had to know more since they knew the name of the artifact. They didn’t really give us any info there outside of telling them to not fight the 魔眼 user alone.

I’m guessing the whole “i’m the bad guy and feel so bad that I turned myself into stone” thing was bs. I think the hooded girl is probably the real 魔眼 user and killed that dude?

To be honest, before the post-credits scene I was thinking to myself this isn’t the worst teaser bait, I’ve seen a lot worse and then that scene with the hooded girl came up at the very end :sweat_smile: Dunno how I really feel about it. Even though the main questions weren’t answered in any real way, I think the game could have been “okay” as a stand-alone if they didn’t have that post-credit teaser.

Overall thoughts on the game

Overall I had fun with the game. It’s not a new favorite or anything but I enjoyed reading it every week and it was a lot better than Loopers. The slice of life moments were cute and while the game didn’t really do anything unique, I still enjoyed the majority of the cast. Yoichi is the only one that I thought was annoying but even he started to show some development by the end of the game. Plot wise its hard to comment on too much. Nothing was really resolved so that’s kind of a bummer but to be expected with a 4-part series.

I think my biggest issue with the game was the OST. Not only was it incredibly short (I think only like 14 tracks?) but I personally didn’t think a lot of the songs matched up with the mood. I feel like that “uneasiness” song played at some of the worst moments. One of my favorite things about VNs is how the music helps set the tone for all the scenes but it kind of fell flat in this one. I’m hoping the next games don’t reuse most of the OST and they have better songs.

Outside of that, I don’t really have any major complaints. Sometimes the characters were being extra silly (The MC telling Miyako to use her powers in broad daylight to prove their innocence etc) but nothing that was off-putting. The difficulty wasn’t too bad. I’d probably put it at the same level as Loopers? Loopers had a lot of characters with annoying speech quirks from what I remember but Sora is the only one in 9-nine that talked “funny” to me. If Yuuki is truly chuuni, I imagine the difficulty will go up a lot once she becomes a prominent character though.

JP thoughts

I have that problem all the time too. Thankfully the sentences were generally on the shorter side in 9-nine but any time those type of sentences that take up the entire textbox appear, I gotta stop and think for a minute :joy:

Consuming easier material/a wide variety of stuff does sound like a good idea. I’ve mostly just been reading VNs and its hard to really get a feel if things are getting better or not. I did recently start to read some manga on the side and noticed I was going through that a lot faster than I was a year ago when I first started reading, so it was nice to feel that progression. I feel like my VN reading speed has been stagnant though, narration parts tend to give me the most trouble. I might try to read some easier novels and see if that helps things for me.

I hope your treatment goes well too and you’re able to get better soon :pray:


Yeah, I have similar problem. I feel like I really improved when it comes to the dialogues, but whenever some long-winded sentence in narration comes up I get seriously slowed down.

Final week comments

I am just basically repeating what @ccookf said already, but by far my favorite parts were the funny interactions between the characters when they are just joking around.

Sora in particular, who delivers gems like this one :joy:

I am hoping episode 2 will be even more hilarious, considering Sora is the main heroine.
Also loved how Miyako eventually manages to actually follow up on Sora’s jokes. It was very endearing.

As to the fiction parts… I didn’t like nor hate how the case “ended”, and in many ways it felt that rather than Kakeru making some excellent deductions it was more like 75% pure chance. I was hoping we would at least see what Noa’s power was (Za Order!), but I’ll guess we’ll have to wait for that.

Overall thoughts on the VN

It was overall a mixed experience, though mostly leaning on the good side. I liked the characters and their interactions, even if none of the characters completely escaped being somewhat stereotypical, they still had some growth and were entertaining to watch.

The whole “mystery” was underwhelming and many things like the “rules” of the different artifacts and the like felt unpolished or irrelevant. Game very rarely dropped any clues for us reader to think over, so there weren’t really any interesting surprises or developments.

The romance was so-so I’d say. I felt things were rushed and Miyako seemed to get attached to Kakeru too easily for my liking, but it wasn’t terrible or nonsense by any means.

At least in the mystery aspect I did like Loopers more, though 9-nine- feels way better in the character side of things.

I’d give this VN probably a 7/10 - mostly fun but nothing outstanding. I am hoping future chapter will get better.

Japanese learning and VNs

I mentioned this before, but it’s was my first time using Textractor + Yomichan to read a VN and it was definitely a lot smoother. I like how Yomichan goes for a greedy approach (by selecting as much continuous text as it can find in the dictionary) that makes it easy to notice set phrases that otherwise I would have tried to translate separately.

I struggled in a few parts where I had to rely on the English translation to actually understand what was happening. Thankfully I feel these were few, though some of them were important parts. I still struggle a lot by losing context, in particular who or what is the subject in some larger sentences.

sigh Proficiency still feels so far away


I did it! Blew through this one in a day too. This was a little longer than I’d like to spend on reading all the time, but if I can keep up this kind of progress all the time, I’m probably fine to balance a couple clubs.

Final week

Sure it’s their intent, but definitely an anticlimactic ending. I’m on board with definitely thinking there’s more to the stone guy’s death than meets the eye. I’m leaning towards saying he IS the one turning people to stone but was still forced to do so by someone with another power, if only because that’s kind of an extra step of intrigue/obfuscation.

I know there are different “branches” so in this world they do stay together, but it was so stuck in my mind how they go on and on about how they will be together and need each other… and we’re out of there, bye Kujou. Haha. A little concerned about VN tendencies and the fact that the next one is about his sister but umm, at least I’m not playing the adult content version. All the same… that aside, I can’t wait for Sora to take the spotlight cause she’s such an amusing character.

The cliffhanger doesn’t bother me that much, personally. I suppose I’m already gearing up to continue so it’s whatever. Pointing at broadening the mystery is good because this whole episode felt a little too narrow with the main plot barely developing. Which I guess leads me into…

The VN overall

Well I’ve already brought this up a lot in other threads but, overall, alright? Something like a 7/10 if I have to rate it but seeing how it’s very solidly one portion of a developing story, I don’t feel right about fully judging it just yet anyway. I definitely agree that the music got repetitive, and beyond the usual complaints I’ve brought up, it could’ve probably used a few more characters (or just a lot more for Yoichi and the teacher to do), but I was consistently interested enough to blast through it in like a week. It’s full of strengths and weaknesses rather than being mediocre all around, so I’m happy to appreciate what it excels at and, if nothing else, learn a little more about effective storytelling by being critical about parts of it too. These picks have been great for learning but do leave me looking forward to the days when the club gets into the REALLY good stuff. Most VNs have their points to overlook here or there, but the medium at its best can be really meaningful literature, and I’m looking forward to that point proven better to people newer to it.

My learning

Well my participation was a little weird here, huh? Still perpetually managing a pain across my right arm but it hasn’t been interfering with things as much recently. Depression made it hard to keep learning and then after a little break I reached the point where having to come back felt hard and that extended things while I wondered what I was going to do. Glad I finally started again, because I’m slipping on various kanji readings, but it’s mostly coming back quickly. This is no doubt aided by this VN not being too difficult, but today is up there with the most I’ve read in a day, even.

Things like Anki have been totally abandoned and I’d have to start over again if I wanted to do that, but I’m waiting for now and seeing how it feels after I read a little longer term. I really like the idea, if possible, of just sticking with input and not bothering with all the “obligations” of flashcards and etc. I’ll just have to try to monitor my learning later, but I’m also staying a little laid back right now because I need to not pressure myself over it. Doing well overall, I think.

In a sense this VN is very much only a part 1, but I finished it super quickly, so I have to be happy about that. I got tripped up here and there by omitted subjects and the like (and also took a quick glance at the English at those times) but it was rarely too much of a struggle outside isolated moments.


I haven’t forgotten about this! Still on my mind everyday that I have to finish this :joy: . I’ve needed some time off but will definitely return to it one of these next days.

I haven’t read much in the thread yet to avoid spoiling myself but I’ll admit that in these two weeks off I haven’t had this VN super present in my mind, as in I haven’t had the urge to finish it and know what happens next. Not sure if that’s an indication that I’m not super sold on it after all OR that I just fell off it for a bit and once I’m back the interest will come back. Like I was enjoying it for what it is but it’s not turning out to be super memorable for me in the end, I’m honestly not sure. If anything the rating of the rest of the episodes does make me somewhat curious, especially episode 4. For now I will finish Episode 1, see how much the cliffhanger makes me want to continue, and then possibly give Episode 2 a try. If during or after Episode 2 I’m still not very sold I might think of something else then.

It’s looking like Zero Escape will win the next nomination and I will definitely read that, I even have it already from a sale last year. If that nomination will lose some of our members though, I might consider reading Episode 2 at the same time depending on how much time I have, but I might be able to do it, supposing you all continue to read it together. Weekly 50k characters here I come :joy: . Honestly I’m not even bothered by it, this is how I’m currently studying Japanese anyways, could be a nice push, but I need to see for myself how viable it would be.

Also @Daisoujou whenever you have a moment update the title of the home thread to Finished if you can please :3


I got it.

Seeing the winner is likely 999, I do want to reread that, but plan to probably balance both of them. I’m pretty sure I can handle it.