I just realised, with horror, that I’d never posted a review of Ever 17. That’s wrong and needed to be remedied.
So cue here a very, very biased review of Ever 17, given that I loved that game to pieces.
I’ll start by saying this: if you ever get a chance to play Ever 17, do so. Just do it. If your friend has a copy, borrow it. Beg if necessary. …because finding a copy will prove difficult, as Hirameki had been out of business for a while now and the game is out of print. There are sellers on Amazon that have them, but when they’re charging $120-170 for it… yeah. Really made the illegal option for obtaining it a lot more tempting, isn’t it…
There isn’t much I can say about the storyline without giving away spoilers… and this is one game where any spoiler would destroy the enjoyment you get out of it. The basic premise is this: one day, an underwater amusement park called LeMU suddenly failed, and water started flooding the place. Evacuation alarm was sounded, but in the confusion 7 people failed to evacuate, and found that their only method of escape had been flooded. To top it off, they only had 119 hours before the whole structure would implode and flood the remaining area with water, thus killing them off. Since the place was way, way underwater, trying to swim to the surface was out of the question, as the change in water pressure would kill them. So the game was about what happened in that time span of 119 hours… that, and so, so much more.
I fondly remember my first experience with the game. Borrowed it off a friend, and installed it near midnight to see if it would work. Then I thought, everyone’s saying that this game’s good, was it really, let’s just try to play for half an hour… and started playing. …6-8 hours later, I was still playing, and only stopped because I realised I had to go to uni. Needless to say, that day my diet consisted of coffee. And espresso. But it was worth it. Damn worth it. The next time I saw that Hirameki was having a sale in their online shop, I immediately bought my own copy, and count the copy I have as one of my prized possessions.
In terms of storyline… I guess it’s not the game for you if you’re looking for romance. It’s not otome, and what romance there was, was overshadowed by the fact that they were gloomy about their uncertain fate. But if you’re looking for a solid storyline, Ever 17 provides that, and will most likely exceed your expectations. The game even had topics on philosophy and physics, something I wasn’t expecting to be in a game.
Also, this is one game where you have to play all the routes to unlock the final route. In all the routes, as you play, the confusion just grew and curiousity would snowball… and the final route would answer all of your questions, beautifully, splendidly, triumphantly. I usually complain about games where you need to finish all the other routes before being able to access a particular route, but in Ever 17 it was executed flawlessly that such mechanism was actually necessary.
Can’t say much about the seiyuu or the music, since I played it ages ago… but I remember liking the music a lot. And all the seiyuu matched their characters, so no complaint there as well.
…also, if you don’t cry during one of the endings you’re not human. …or so everyone else is saying.
Damn, I feel like replaying the game now…