Friday, 31 August 2012


Gamespot Score:n/a

My score:8.0

(+)Pros: - Great story, - Memorable characters, - Unique visual novel elements that separates it from others, - Main play through is lengthy and enjoyable, - Beautiful and gorgeous art style, - Fully voiced with "triple A" quality voice actors.

(-)Cons: - Its just reading and listening to voices...not much gameplay involved, - Early levels of the plot can get rather boring with lack of any interesting events.

Gameplay time: 20-30 hours

I am now free of everything school related. Screw school, I am now free...( for about a month or so). I'll be going to STGCC this weekend so expect updates of that. For now, my 2nd eroge ever, "Steins;Gate"! Yes there is no hentai content in here, but since it is technically a dating sim, I'll call it an eroge. Despite watching the anime before playing the game, I enjoyed my time, and I can say that there is substantial content to satisfy any player, whether or not you've watched the anime. It has too many things unique to an eroge to pass up. If you're looking for a good visual novel to spend time with, Steins;Gate does just that and more. However, you're going to want to look for an English patch before starting.

If you've watched the anime, you know where the story going. You star as Okabe Rintarou, self proclaimed mad scientist who is out of his mind. He thinks that a secret organization is after him, when that organization itself is self imagined by himself. He posses the power "reading steiner", which allows him to retains memories of a previous timeline when he jumps to a different one. He realizes this after a first initial time travel, upon discovering a dead Makise Kurisu. After that incident he asks his friends if they remembered anything about what happened that day, and they don't. But Okabe himself remembers every detail of what happened. With this, he decides to investigate further, not knowing what deepshit he is getting himself into. Lets not forget, he dates girls in the process.

Talk to girls, get all their love!

Being a visual novel, you've got to have not only a good story, but girls that you actually want to GO FOR! Fortunately, the girls of Stein;Gate are pretty likable, and you'll probably want to go for most of them. The tsundere Kurisu? The happy go lucky Mayushi? The working warrior Suzuha? You've got quite a few choices, and most of them are good ones. There are also other characters that will just make you remember them, like the super hacker Daru or the crazy Mr Braun, they are all just part of the already awesome package. Throughout the lengthy experience, you will be running into a lot of these characters, and the story changes depending on how you interact with the girls, like most VN.

Speaking of character interaction, the way you do that in this game is pretty different. Instead of the usual "asking a question" and "picking an answer", Steins;Gate utilizes its choice making through instant messages from the girls. Throughout the game you will be using your cell phone a lot, and while the cell phone itself is already a cool feature on its own (calling others and dialing numbers for the microwave), it is actually your choice machine. Throughout the game when you receive messages, you have to reply these messages, and the way you reply them using the different keywords presented will count as a different choice. Its kind of cool, and is definitely a new way to dive into the many different story paths of the game.

The art style is different...and I like it!

To further differentiate itself from other VN experiences, Steins;Gate gives itself a priority list. While most eroge type games tend to focus on the main character getting the girls, raising flags for their routes an eventually delving into the different storyline of the girls, Steins;Gate is more of a single story VN. It focuses on the main plot over everything else. The story, dating and choosing of other girls is just a side activity when compared to the main story. In many ways, its just like Persona, and by doing all the routes of the separate girls, you get exclusive CG, and that is of course for all you 100% completion faggots.

Since my experience with eroge is very very limited (Steins;Gate is only my second visual novel experience), I'll go ahead and praise Steins;Gate for having voices. Steins;Gate is more of a high budget VN rather than Katawa Shoujo, so its really hard to compare the 2. Steins;Gate has some pretty solid voice acting, featuring voices like Asami Imai and Kana Hanazawa. It feels more intense in the anime, but putting them in the game just makes it less dry, since some of the science related content can be rather boring. The art style is also different, and it is of rather good quality. They obviously put a good amount of effort into the art.

Wanna go for Kurisu? A good choice!

Well even with just two eroges under my belt, its quite hard for me to find flaws within them, since they aren't really considered as "games", without much gameplay in them. Steins;Gate is no different. it is a "Visual Novel", you just read and listen to voices, there's close to no gameplay at all. Things can get a little dry sometimes. Another thing that really bothers me is the lack of any interesting content at the start of the game. Just like the anime, the starting few segments can get a little dry and boring, before actually getting to the good parts in the story.

Overall, Steins;Gate is a great VN experience for me. It definitely has more to offer than the likes of Katawa Shoujo, but I have a feeling this would have been a much better experience had I not watched the anime beforehand. Still, if you want an eroge or VN that has a very strong plot, Steins;Gate is a game for you. Just know that there is zero hentai content in here, so don't go in with the wrong mindset.

Happy gaming!