Sekai Project and code:jp come together to bring you Japanese School life, a visual novel where you’ll learn about Japanese culture and customs! This visual novel is released on November 22nd on Steam by Sekai Project and priced at $9.99. It is relatively a short visual novel and I took 5 hours to complete it.
[I was provided a review copy of this game and it will never affect the outcome of this review]
Brief overview of the story
Welcomed by the fluttering of cherry blossom, the main character, Brian, starts a new high school life in Japan. Brian soon starts to get along with two girls in the same class after they start to talk to him.
With their help, Brian gradually learns Japanese culture and customs. He deepens his friendships with each girl as they teach him how to study and spend time together after school. He gradually learns how to survive through the commuter rush, May sickness, the rainy season, and more as he experiences Japanese culture for the first time.
Thoughts On The Story
Okay I would like to say this straight out first, I don’t think the game is really geared towards “Japanese school life” it’s more of having a retarded protagonist that is extremely into anime come to Japan as a transfer student and being plain stupid. Oh and the protagonist just loves to ask and behave like an idiot at times.
First of I really do not know why these kind of games where the protagonist is a foreigner comes to Japan always get surprised by convenience stores. Like what ?? You do not have convenience store at your own country or something????? I just do get it why the protagonist is always surprised by it and isn’t it normal for convenience stores to be 24 hours available? Oh but no the protagonist gets his mind blown away.
Next there is a part in the game which I can’t seem to get my mind off that is during a summer festival. I could not comprehend that he asked his friends what are those which is goldfish scooping. I don’t get how he even came up with that question, he is pretty much asking a person eating curry rice “Hey what are you eating? I totally have no idea at all”.
Finally the flow of the game progresses a little too fast, one moment it is a Halloween party and the next a cultural festival. The game keeps on using “time skip” to skip towards the next possible big event.
At times It felt like the writing itself does not know what direction it is heading, is it Japanese school life? or some foreigner that is a fan of anime life or cultural aspect of Japan. One moment it will be talking about anime and then the next it will be talking about the culture of Japan. It tries to spread itself to wide like jam on bread that is spread to thinly to cover as much as possible and turns out to be bad tasting which made the game felt like it was all over the place.
Overall I did not enjoy the story at all, it feels extremely rushed and all over the place.
Audio and Visual Elements
Nothing to fancy here the just typical moe art and for the soundtrack it is extremely forgettable. But then the voice cast is really nice Honda Chiyoko is being voiced by Taneda Risa which voiced Tedeza Rize from Gochuumon wa Usagi desu ka?? and Nakiri Erina from Shokugeki no Soma. These are just some examples.
- See the characters come to life through the power of the e-mote system!
- In-game text available in both English and Japanese
- An in-game accessible tips glossary with Japanese cultural and otaku terminology
- Nekomimi Mode
To sum up 3.5/10
I would not recommend this game at all, it honestly felt like a waste of time and did not cover much aspect of Japanese school life instead it feels like a Wikipedia that has been glossed over with a story.