Review of Sakura, Moyu. -as the Night's, Reincarnation-
|Subject||Sakura, Moyu. -as the Night's, Reincarnation-|
Vote: 6.2PonyEternalBlue on 2023-01-27 last updated on 2023-01-30
|Review||To make it clear beforehand, 1. I read the TR of this VN, so some of the points I mentioned below may not reflect the ones of the original game, and 2. I didn't quite get the whole lore of it because I skimmed through some parts and I'm not quite familiar with such VN based on some Japanese fantasy, and 3. This review contains some subjective ideas, and I'll be glad if anyone can mention them and I'll remove them.|
Its writing style is probably the most annoying thing for me. Not only did it use INDIRECT speech a lot (I've never read any VN with so many of that, and it seems like they want to cut down some voicelines to reduce the cost), but the furiganas and emphasis marks are also gradually driving me mad, that they're applied to those ambiguous "settings" and I felt like being humiliated, because how can I pay attention to something that I do NOT know?? I could tolerate those if used properly, but they're just literally EVERYWHERE in this VN.
As the title mentioned, "incarnation" is an important element of the VN. This means the story is not chronological, instead it first keeps you in the dark, and then gradually unfolds the whole story through endless recalls and flashbacks. However, those recalls are intertwined with each other and with the "reality" (I don't know if that's the proper word to describe it), and there are few hints that tell you the changes of perspectives (some VNs will show a hint like "xxx's perspective"), so I constantly misunderstood the narrations. Sometimes I just couldn't figure out where I was, like in the recall part or in the "reality"? Eventually you have to figure out the mess yourself.
Though I didn't quite get the whole picture, I have to say something about the whole setting. This is some classic fairytale-like Japanese fantasy, and the writer constantly used some words like "magic" "hope" "price" to refer to the main concepts. You'll gradually understand those concepts, but they're still quite annoying while trying to read the lines. The further you go, the harder you comprehend the plot. I couldn't really empathize with any characters in the story, so boredom gradually filled me up, and I was just hoping it to end soon.
Talking about the art and the music, I would say it's neither excellent nor bad. The music is just... well, mediocre. The tracks are quite "average", and are even predictable if you've read a good number of VNs. After I finish a VN, I always try to play my favorite tracks of it on my piano, but after completing this one I really can't name any track that I would like to play. They're "template music" to me.
In my opinion, you can't call a VN "outstanding" just because it has an impressive ending or it has conveyed some novel ideas. Even a VN has some magnificent lore or epic stories, it has to keep the player interested, NOT letting them drop the game due to the bad pacing or SoL parts. Take this VN as an example, I've heard that many people couldn't withstand its pacing and writing style ("I fell asleep multiple times while playing...") thus eventually dropped it. Besides the bad pacing and SoL parts, during the process of "throwing out some mysterious ideas first, then constantly confusing you by mentioning them (of course with EMPHASIS MARKS!) and finally revealing it at the end", if the player is teased too hard, his/her interest will be lost gradually. Sakura no Uta also has some similar disadvantages, but SakuUta managed to clear them up halfway and grab the player's heart steadily, while for this VN I couldn't bring up any interest to drive me further down into the story.
In conclusion, if you're fond of these Japanese "sakura" fantasies and extremely complex storytelling, you may find it interesting. But if you don't want to mess your brain up with tangled-up stories and illusive ideas, I suggest you save your precious time on this one, to avoid being another me, who wasted tens of hours on it and got nothing.
I'm happy to hear different opinions, since I didn't read it that carefully. But sorry, I really don't want to boot up the game ever again.