YU-NO A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bounds of this World Review
YU-NO is probably a title, or visual novel, many fans recognize as one of the most influentual ones compared to its age. Originally released in 1996 it quickly became a hallmark for visual novels of that time, offering a similar scope and world to Steins;Gate ins some regards yet melting it with a very open approach. Given, I never played the original, simply saw it floating around on the internet and so I got excited to see it got a remake. Even more so, because it actually got a Western release, mere 2 years after its Japanese release.
Following the student Takuya, we’re experiencing his search for the cause of his father’s disappearance. Meeting dozens of characters, some even potential love interests, and gaining control over the so-called Reflector. With this device he’s able to jump between timelines, carrying over some items and knowledge that help him progressing through other ones and exploring what could and couldn’t have been.
As intriguing as it sounds, YU-NO A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bounds of this World is as convoluted as its title when it comes to its premise. Starting out, it’s nothing more than a simple and quite bad dating sim to be honest. Literally, the first five minutes are filled with mediocre writing and a ton of unfitting, perverted dialogue. For whatever reason, the whole game and Takuya’s character itself are filled with tons of simply unfitting perversion, especially early on. From panty jokes in the first minute to the vast option of how you can interact with the world and the female body parts. If a story starts out with a student and techincally a teacher talking about the teacher’s breasts and panties like it’s an everyday topic I simply cant take it seriously. Especially with the whole first hours being basically filled to the brim with these moments it’s not hard to loose interest in it.
However, it’s also not hard to still be
As previously said, YU-NO A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bounds of this World uses the so-called Reflector to allow Takuya to jump between timelines and carrying over certain things from them. This is used both as a normal timeline to give the player a better overview of how the whole story is connected, especially because it offers quite extensive character routes for every romanceable person.
Another thing that astounded me is how atmospheric and beautiful the whole experience is. Given, the visual fidelity is due to the remake basically redesigning and redrawing every character, background and some menues to make them look as good as any visual novel from 2017. While fans of the original may not like the artstyle switch in particular, I find nearly all characters and art really enchanting, if only the dialogue could hold up. Luckily, at least the many interactions offer surprisingly well-written, gripping descriptions of the atmosphere or surroundings, perfectly underlined by the great soundtrack.
Overall, YU-NO A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bounds of this World may not be the masterpiece I expected but it’s certainly an interesting experience. Offering a wild mix between a really mediocre dating sim, interesting sci-fi concepts and gameplay ideas as well as the charme of old visual novels packed into a new, wonderful coat.
[A Review Code was provided by Spike Chunsoft]