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Review of Akatsuki Yureru Koi Akari

SubjectAkatsuki Yureru Koi Akari
Akatsuki Yureru Koi Akari - Download Edition
ByVote: 7.4mutsuki on 2021-03-08 last updated on 2021-03-09
ReviewI prayed. I prayed so hard after despairing over the MekuRabe demo-- please for the love of all that is holy, bring back Jindou, the one ray of hope in this series. Day and night I prayed, every day, sacrificing money to the almighty CRYSTALiA gods by getting the 'deluxe' versions of the two laughably short spinoff nukiges they pumped out for MekuIro.

I am sorry to say this... but I may have prayed just a bit too hard. I got exactly what I wanted-- Jindou... but what was sacrificed as a result was too great for this game to surpass the original MekuIro.

This game has the Jindou down pat. I don't think it gets much better. The writing of the combat is same high quality in MekuIro, letting you get a sense of every last movement they make. On top of all that, in the graphics department they've added so many more cut-ins and flashing shots, which make the fights so much more dramatic and cool. I will be surprised if they manage to surpass this in the next game... but saying that I'm really hoping they do improve on it.

The game's pacing is kinda bad though. The opening of the game is fine: the protagonist becomes a teacher and has to round up the kids to convince them to actually come to class. You don't expect much intense battling here so the slice-of-life (read: 日常) nature of the introductions and the balance with combat is very good. However, after this has settled down, the game enters a slice-of-life phase which jumps around between the characters kinda haphazardly in very short character arcs, before finally focusing down to Jindou, Jindou and more Jindou as the exams and Enbu-sai ('Swords Dance Festival', I guess) come around. So basically the first half is slice-of-life with a small sprinkling of combat, while the second half is combat with basically no break.

The plot is very clear from the beginning. It's a proxy showdown between Suzakuin and Kazamine through Momiji and Setsugekka in the Enbu-sai. While we know the conclusion of this showdown from the very start, as this is a prequel, it's very exciting to see how exactly it'll unfold, especially as they start to get closer and closer in ability throughout the story. It also takes place over a very short period of time, like the other games, but as the goal and checkpoints along the way are very set, it feels a lot shorter than the other games.

And that is probably where the biggest fault is with this game, in my opinion. As the story is mainly about the faceoff between Momiji and Setsugekka, they decided that they'll make the main story linear, where the protagonist doesn't get with, or particularly favour any one heroine, and then added the heroine 'routes' as afterstories all branching off from the same end of the main story. I feel like this is the cause of the poor pacing of the second half, as the lack of dates, alternate fights and plotlines etc. means that the game just jumps from one battle to the next, which also means that a lot of the potential length of the game is cut down as well. The main story is about as long as MekuIro from the start of the game to the end of the Saya route, and the heroine afterstories all add up to about the length of one other route in Mekuiro. Where did the rest of the game go? I feel like I'm being short changed at least two MekuIro route's worth of content... and I already felt like I had been short changed buying MekuIro at the full 8,800 yen pricepoint.

So my conclusion:
- Jindou is back and better than ever
- The story is exciting, even if you know how it's going to end
- The pacing has been compromised by the format they chose (but there is more Jindou though which is always good)
- The total length has been shortened significantly because of the linear format
- Heroine afterstories (read: routes) are very short (for people who care about that stuff)
- Music is absolutely bumping. I love the music in this series so much, and they didn't disappoint here. I believe it's actually all new music (or at least they changed the names of the songs) and it's pretty much all great. I loved the insert song right at the end.

If you are new to the series, and want to get in, play MekuIro first. If you liked MekuIro and want more, and you've also got pockets full of cash, then get this. It's a good read, but it doesn't surpass the original.

Comments

#1 by phantomjs
2021-05-09 at 06:13
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If you are new to the series, and want to get in, play MekuIro first
I disagree. People who wants to get into the series should definitely read this first because of all the issues you mentioned (or for nothing else but the fact that it's the prequel to Mekuiro).

I went into this VN with the expectation of it being structured just like Mekuiro (central story on Jindo and the same school, 4 main heroines so after common route ---> into chosen route), but it's actually a linear story. If they planned to structured it like this< would prefer if they just focused the story on just Suzakuin and Kazamine and cut out the other 2 main heroines. I'm also disappointed with the romance elements. It felt very half-assed and lacks development (just finished Momiji's 'route' and they didn't give it a proper conclusion). Probably not gonna read the other girls routes with the assumption all of them are like this.

Definitely read the original first, otherwise you will end up with expectations like mine and probably end up disappointed with this title
#2 by mutsuki
2021-05-09 at 13:50
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People who wants to get into the series should definitely read this first
Definitely read the original first

??
#3 by phantomjs
2021-05-12 at 05:30
< report >ha! got me (epic typing)

Definitely read THIS first before the original under any circumstances - my opinion