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Review of Neko Para Vol.1 Soleil Kaiten Shimashita!

SubjectNeko Para Vol.1 Soleil Kaiten Shimashita!
ByVote: 4.5eschasintra on 2020-11-15
ReviewThis is the start of the famous catgirl series planned and drawn by Sayori to satisfy her animalistic desires, which became one of the most famous visual novel within the western audience. Although the root of its popularity could be argued, it succeed in amassing a huge crowd and an iconic fandom without debate.

Sayori's magnificent art is praised internationally and her characters are indeed pretty and cute : the mix of lolita outfits and catgirls is not unknown but it sure isn't popular either, in the visual novel field. Those veteran voice actresses carry their roles to perfection and make the overall sound experience quite enjoyable.

Volume 1 is focused on Chocola and Vanilla, and introduces the overall concept of catgirls as well as Kashou's pastry. As each episode to this day focus on new catgirls, starting with the main girls seems obvious to me, regardless of our affection toward those characters. If your aim is on other catgirls, you'd still have to go through this episode as the plot is pretty much linear.

Speaking of the plot, it really couldn't be more linear : you sit and read, enjoy the characters, appreciate the well-done 3D implementation and the nice visual/sound effects. Nekopara volume one is anything but a story meant to be "read", but rather "admired" with your eyes : appreciate the characters, listen to their voices, praise the art... and that's it. The story is inexistant other than some small twists such as the catgirls duo gaining maturity through events to avoid plot stagnation; other than that, thank lord this game can be settled down in under six hours.

The sex scenes are animated as well, if you can overlook the catgirl fetish, they are pretty well-done : be aware as it is a small part of the plot and I wouldn't recommend getting through the whole script just to get to that part.

Overall, I can totally see why Nekopara gained its popularity and managed to make a name for themselves, and contradicting to the score, I'd still recommend you to read the series to experience their animated sprites (one of the best to this date, without a doubt) and the overall idea and universe Sayori tried to express. It just wasn't meant for me, but I don't regret playing it as the two next volumes aren't as plain and more elements were introduced, such as an actual plotline. Catgirls aren't my fetish, and Sayori sure failed in convincing me to care about it.