Narcissu Review

Narcissu Main Menu

… on a blindingly bright day …
… on that very day of winter …

Narcissu is a kinetic novel doujin game developed by stage nana, created by Tomo Kataoka.
I know this game was made in year 2005, which is quite old, but it is a game worth reviewing.
It is well known for being very good despite being a doujin game, and in fact, it is.
The amazing thing is this game had been translated to English, which makes my reading and understanding easier.
Well, here goes the review.

Narcissu
Genre: Drama

Gameplay (Unrated)
– Since this is a kinetic novel, it cannot really be called a game.
All you have to do is click the screen to continue. Click….. click….. click…..
You can’t even affect the actions of the protagonist too.

Story 8/10
– The good thing is, the opening and the overall story is not so cliche and the whole atmosphere of the story is depressing.
There’s no comedy in this game, pure one straight road of drama.
The story tells the tale of an anonymous protagonist and a woman named Setsumi, both who were terminally ill in hospice care.

Spoiler Warning (in white)

After both of them found out that they both refuse to die in the

hospital or with their families, they escaped the hospital with

the protagonist’s dad’s car, with no destination in mind. They

travel through Japan’s many highways and later decided to

go to Awaji Island as their destination.
I have whited out the further minor spoilers, and I wouldn’t want to spoil too much details of the story though, the rest is up to you to read.
Anyway, the story has no fantasy elements in it, and is quite realistic, although there are wrong depiction of events. It is fiction after all.
The ending is okay, although it could be improved.
However, it is definitely not a happy ending.
Bittersweet/Sad endings tend to give a more
lasting impression than happy ending.

Graphic 6.5/10
– If you’re familiar with road movies, this game uses this style. In fact, the screen layout is that of a cinema screen.
Example of how the game looks like.
I find it quite interesting, although I still prefer the whole screen scenery, since you will get to see the beautiful scenery of the game.
Although I find it a pity that the depictions of Setsumi are very few, which sucks.
Not to mention, the amount of CGs are quite small.

Music 9/10
– I would say, unexpectedly beautiful for a doujin game. It could even fight with commercial games.
The classical music plays right to their situation.
You will eventually finding yourself continuously listening to the music.
If you can find the OST, download and listen to it.

Replay 4/10
– After you finish this game, you’re quite finished with this game.
The only time you reopen this game would be to listen to the music or replay the game.
However, try both voiced mode and unvoiced mode, they are both differently translated.
Both of them are translated straight to how the japanese version wants it to be, just differently translated so both context are different.
This is to get a better picture of the story. Your experience will definitely be different.

Overall 8/10
– Well, what I would say is that it is the journey that matters. The whole story is definitely worth to read, that is if you like drama. Reading this game would spend you around 1 to 2 hours.
Maybe I’ll try to find Narcissu ~ 2nd side, the prequel to Narcissu to play, but I think I’ll have to find the translation.

Preferably for: Drama genre lovers
Not for: Depressing/Tear-jerker genre haters, those who want happy ending

About Kurohagane