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Review of Ever17 -The Out of Infinity-

SubjectEver17 -The Out of Infinity-
ByVote: 9.4m0lnarr on 2021-05-01 last updated on 2021-06-30
Review(I am editing this review to add some more thoughts about E17 two months after having finished this VN)

2021-06-30
-New Thoughts-
This was already mentioned, but back in the day, E17 was huge in the community of English visual novel readers. Now, after so many new titles arrived and were also translated, E17 is received not as well as it was back when it was the only one doing what it did, but nobody can deny the impact it had. It feels complete despite its amateurish feeling resulted from the lack of technology back in the day. For what it is, E17 still holds a candle to some new titles, but still lacks some aspects - it's a... diamond in the rough.

I'd compare it to the massively popular TV Show Neon Genesis Evangelion because the current state of anime would be vastly different without it. At times, still frames last for 2-3 minutes because of the lack of funding, yet the moments are still gripping and intense. NGE can't be compared to new-gen anime, yet it's still a masterpiece in its own way, and the same can be said about E17 to some degree.

For the people that want to experience a small piece of history of the visual novel community, E17 is the title for you. Great SF, soundtrack, characters, and writing. It's definitely held back from being top 10-20 vns of all time by its pacing though.

2021-05-01
-Original Review-
Ever17 does what many science fiction titles are afraid to do, and it does it very well.

What started as a very, very slow-paced story, turned out to have some of the most mind-blowing twists imaginable. Before reading it, I heard many complaints about it, terrible pacing, similarities to the Zero Escape series, and everything in between. While the pacing is the only thing keeping this from being one of the best visual novels in the entire medium, the last route makes it feel like it was on purpose. It does not pull punches, not at all. The last route is why this story was written, but it could not exist without the other routes. I can compare the true route to what Higurashi's chapter eight is to the entire story.

What I must praise about this visual novel is the different science fiction tropes they used, and how important they were to the story. We all know Schrodinger's Cat and how it seems to be overused. Ever17 does none of that.

I won't forget the people that lead me to believe this title is a copy of Zero Escape, I could sense little to no similarities at all, and the execution of both stories is absolutely nothing like the other.

Great atmosphere, unique setting, and music, well-written plot, and characters. What I felt could have ties all of these into the perfect package was production value. I am one to enjoy older titles, with Tsukihime being one of my all-time favorites, and that one is very amateurish in that direction. In E17's case, the lack of Sprites could not always convey what the characters felt, but other than that, a great experience.

It definitely took me a little longer than usual to finish it, but I'm really glad I did. If anyone is a fan of science fiction, this is the title for them. If somebody wants to get into SF, this is the title for them. If one feels all SF titles are the same, this is the title for them.

Comments

#1 by funnerific
2021-05-01 at 18:32
< report >I don't like the final big twist, kinda ruined the game for me.
#2 by hansfranz77
2021-11-11 at 03:26
< report >
Now, after so many new titles arrived and were also translated, E17 is received not as well

Why should that matter in a review you are writing today? There is no measurement on which you can assess "for it's time". There are however quite a few to ascertain writing quality, story writing and pacing. Also, how does it being translated early have anything to do with quality, exactly?

as it was back when it was the only one doing what it did, but nobody can deny the impact it had.

That again is just wrong, it might've been true for console gaming in japan, but the pc had Yu-No already doing it before. And i know you seem to think this being translated first is somehow a testament to quality, but once again it isn't. If anything, it's more happenstance and luck than anything objectively pro or against the game.

It feels complete despite its amateurish feeling resulted from the lack of technology back in the day. For what it is, E17 still holds a candle to some new titles, but still lacks some aspects - it's a... diamond in the rough.

You come across as nostalgia blind, honestly. If you were one of those guys reading it back in the day and being blown away by it, that is perfectly fine. Just do not come to me in 2021 or in the future and be an apologist for something which is neither well written, paced nor thought out. And just an fyi being badly thought out, written and paced has nothing to do with technical aspects. There were games even more limited by tech before, as for those, take a look at some 80s and 90s vn's some time. ;)

I'd compare it to the massively popular TV Show Neon Genesis Evangelion because the current state of anime would be vastly different without it.

Seriously? Is this a popularity means quality shitpost in disguise?

Great SF, soundtrack, characters, and writing. It's definitely held back from being top 10-20 vns of all time by its pacing though.

Out of these points, i only agree with the soundtrack, nearly everything else is wasted in this game. If you are not nostalgia blind, at least.

Honestly you might wanna put a second disclaimer up with the fact that you grew up with this game, or something similar, and thus are unable to assess it in any unbiased way. Doing that might put at least a few dudes looking at this into perspective.Last modified on 2021-11-11 at 03:43
#3 by dchsflii
2021-11-11 at 04:28
< report >#2 The Infinity series is definitely important in that it helped launch the career of Uchikoshi, even if YU-NO was an earlier example of "multiple route mystery".

Also why are you telling someone their opinion is invalid because they disagree with you? All reviews are subjective. People have different tastes and that's fine. Other people are allowed to like things you don't. Plus your point of nostalgia blindness doesn't even make sense considering this review suggests OP read E17 AFTER Zero Escape existed, not 15 years ago or whatever.

If you think your opinions are "unbiased" and other people need to put up disclaimers, you're delusional.Last modified on 2021-11-11 at 04:30
#4 by hansfranz77
2021-11-11 at 04:43
< report >
Also why are you telling someone their opinion is invalid because they disagree with you?
Did you read something into my comment that is not there, by chance? Because i'm sure as hell not telling him his opinion is moot because he seems to be incredibly biased towards the game.

I do however disagree entirely on the part of what a review is for. And while there might not be a way to do a 100% unbiased review. Not putting the degree of bias in there at all seems just misleading to me. I did that for example with most of mine, or i just tell in the very first paragraph, the ones reading it what experience i have with a vn, dev franchise in question.

What he did was the opposite. He tried to make it sound unbiased while spouting nostalgia dripping phrases like those i did quote. There is a hell of a lot of a difference in reviewing something (making a critical assessment of it), or just gushing about it without even trying to see faults. And what he wrote is exactly the problem i did point out. Let's be real for a second, nostalgia is a problem with some things for all of us, but denying it is a real factor clouding your judgment is misleading others as well.

Plus your point of nostalgia blindness doesn't even make sense considering this review suggests OP read E17 AFTER Zero Escape existed, not 15 years ago or whatever.

I highly doubt that, what i suspect is him re-reading a game he played as a teen or child long ago, which would fit exactly in line with his way of praising the thing.

If you think your opinions are "unbiased" and other people need to put up disclaimers, you're delusional.

Nice try, but no, i'm very much aware of what a review is and what i'm talking about. ;-)Last modified on 2021-11-11 at 04:49
#5 by dchsflii
2021-11-11 at 05:04
< report >
I highly doubt that, what i suspect is him re-reading a game he played as a teen or child long ago, which would fit exactly in line with his way of praising the thing.

The reviewer explicitly says they finished E17 in May 2021. You arbitrarily decided, because they didn't mind or praised certain aspects you disliked and attempted to talk about E17's historical significance, that this person must be blinded by nostalgia on a reread. There's no actual evidence to suggest what you claim beyond your being unable to imagine that anyone could reasonably have this opinion that opposes yours without nostalgia. It's a tautology. Because this person praised E17 in this way, they must be blinded by nostalgia. If such a statement is true, no one can like E17 in this way unless they're blinded by nostalgia. And if that holds, then this opinion is inherently biased no matter who opines it.

This person's review did what a review is supposed to do: it talked about their experiences with E17 and how those experiences connect to various elements of the VN. There's no claim that this is "more unbiased" or the authoritative take on E17. Even when someone says "E17 is good" we understand it's their opinion rather than a universal statement by virtue of their having written it.

Your true problem with this review is that the person disagrees with you, and so you manufacture excuses to attack its validity rather than simply debate the person's evaluation on its merits, which is the reasonable thing to do. You wrote your own review of E17, and it's no more or less valid than this one.Last modified on 2021-11-11 at 05:06
#6 by hansfranz77
2021-11-11 at 17:27
< report >Ok.. first of all i don't think this is the place to have some big discussion about how nostalgia can influence you, even on repeat playthroughs of games, but if you really want me to open that topic i'm more than willing to do so. Because what i talked about didn't just fall out of the sky, it's what i did myself a few years ago and even if that might put my age range out there, i would even give you examples. But before i go into this again i would like to take this elsewhere.



You arbitrarily decided, because they didn't mind or praised certain aspects you disliked and attempted to talk about E17's historical significance, that this person must be blinded by nostalgia on a reread.
I'll admit my tone on that was not the most rational, i can hardly change the fact that sci adv took many concepts this game tackles and uses them to this day. However, he worded it like this game came up with these ideas, and that is still something i take issue with. In case it wasn't already clear because of how i argue here, i didn't play zero escape yet as well. I never got into it, because i'm quite bad at logic and math puzzles. -.-

There's no claim that this is "more unbiased" or the authoritative take on E17. Even when someone says "E17 is good" we understand it's their opinion rather than a universal statement by virtue of their having written it.

This is part of why my impression of this whole start of the review was and still is nostalgia bias.
The way he argues historical significance, popularity and for some baffling reason also being one of the first translated visual novels makes this game somehow better than others. It's a trap all of us fall or fell into at one time. Liking something is not the same as it being well-made. The same goes with being the first at something, or being popular. However, you see those arguments all the time, here on vndb and around the net.

That is why a critical review is something i do think has more worth than a none critical one. (if it's valid criticism, of course should be obvious, but have that here, just in case). Being critical will lead to getting better stories in the future. And while i can of course not talk about the japanese vn medium as a whole. You currently do see what this "everything is equally great" mindset does to western media, right? Do you honestly think this just happened overnight?

Your true problem with this review is that the person disagrees with you, and so you manufacture excuses to attack its validity rather than simply debate the person's evaluation on its merits, which is the reasonable thing to do. You wrote your own review of E17, and it's no more or less valid than this one.

And here is where it might get ugly, because the more i read from you, the more i want to hold a mirror up in your face and honestly ask what the fuck is even your problem?! You seem to seek some kind of gacha against me, put words in my text i never said and even argue i would prevent him from enjoying this game, or any game for that matter. Meanwhile, you seem to be trying your hardest to discredit a valid impression of everything he wrote at the very top of this review. And assume the worst intentions on my part as well. And you are not even the guy himself!

So kindly take a step back and ask yourself why you might do that? The problem never was and never will be if there is a disagreement, but how you argue your point. The how is what i take issue with, and the bigger factor as well. And yeah i pull my old man card, now because by god are you a child and never had nostalgia bias in your life?! That is the only reasonable way i can see someone arguing against the point i brought up. I know how you think if you have nostalgia for something, i know how you try your damnedest to put that thing on a pedestal, and that is exactly what this reviewer did. So.. no, you will not have a gacha here, because i will not yield from this point. I do the same thing these days in re-thinking, re-playing and re-evaluating, vns, games and other media, because i know this is a problem. And i also know some games i grew up with will never be completely free of it. So if you never had that issue and therefore can not understand it you have to be very young.

Edit:
This person's review did what a review is supposed to do: it talked about their experiences with E17 and how those experiences connect to various elements of the VN.

Might i just point to the term "editorial" at this point, because what you are talking about seems to fit that way more than what i'm talking about when i'm talking about a review. And i still tell you both are fine to have, before you somehow try to make this one into a rope you try to hang me with figuratively speaking..Last modified on 2021-11-11 at 17:56
#7 by dchsflii
2021-11-11 at 22:08
< report >I suppose if you want to discuss nostalgia and "editorial" vs "objective" reviews in detail you can find me on Reddit with the same handle.

My issue is that commenting on someone else's review to tell them they need to slap a disclaimer on it is kind of arrogant and obnoxious. Not to mention, your reasoning for said disclaimer is based on speculation anyway. Then you do the same to me. Instead of sticking to engaging with my opinions, you jump to baselessly speculating about why I hold those opinions, ultimately suggesting that if I oppose your point I must be a child. While I can't read your mind, most people would interpret such a comment to imply you think I lack the experience and/or capacity to understand what you said and offer a reasonable opinion of my own.

That is the only reasonable way i can see someone arguing against the point i brought up.

You pretty much say it yourself here. You seem to think the only reasonable way someone could disagree with you on these points is if some external limitation--nostalgia, being a child who lacks wisdom and experience--caused them to do so.