If you want a game where you feel immersed in the traditional Japan, this game will be a good choice.
When I was looking at the end of summer sale in Humble Store I never thought I will buy something from there, but I found this game that I felt I want to play and it was discounted to $1. It was a deal I didn't want to miss and I'm happy that I bought it. Going to Japan is one of my dreams, and the two places I want to visit most Japan are Akihabara and Kyoto!! so it made sense to play a game about Kyoto!!
Kyoto Colorful Days
Kyoto Colorful Days is one of the Visual Novels where the main characters is a foreigner who visits japan for few days. This idea isn't new and could be considered a sub-genre of VN started by the educational game: Go Go Nippon. But this game focuses on Drama rather than education or romance.
Being set in Kyoto this game is voiced in Kyoto slang rather than the official Japanese... this is a great idea by the developers!!
Another thing I liked about this game that it has older characters than other games in the genre and focuses on more real-life problems.. problems I think Japan struggle with these days.
Like other Visual Novels, there isn't much of a Gameplay here, you advance the story by clicking and sometimes you have to make choices that affects the flow of the game. Depending on your choices... there aren't many choices in this game but each one of the choices changes the game a lot. which I find one of the main selling points of the game.
The animation is better than many Light Novels but is still minimal.. I like it though.. because it makes the characters seem more real, if the voice didn't do that for you.
This game is short... too short... The average reader can reach an ending in less than 1.5 hour... you can reach all the endings in less than 3 hours if you skip the repeated text.
But the story is good, the characters are great... so I feel the game still worth the price even while being this short!!
The Story and The Characters
The protagonist whose name can be changed (but the default was John Smith for me so I'll refer him by that name) visits Japan after not being able to find a job in his home country to set his thought... Since he had connections in Kyoto he went there. On his first day he met two girls in an encounter that might change his life forever...
The protagonist here have more character than many Visual Novels I played.
Depending on your choices there are two stories each with 2 endings... Each story starts at the 3rd day with the girl you spent time most.
The traditional Japanese girl. Akane is assertive girl who works in a traditional Japanese restaurant owned by her father and she aims to succeed the family business... she bumps into John near her store and helps him reach his hotel as she knows the owner.
In her story we know that she's troubled by land sharks (who I first thought they're Yakuza) who want to buy their store... she and John work to find a way to stop them!!
Her best ending is the ending I loved most in this game!!
A girl from Tokyo who lives in Kyoto for her dream to become a Maiko.. This soft spoken girl finds John wallet and met him at the police place where they put the lost items. And noticing that John is a foreigner she decides to teach him about Japan.
In her story we know she's that someone is following her the past few days (saying more than that would be a spoiler), John decides that he have to help her no matter what..
I think Madoka story is more personal and dramatic than Akane's even though there's less at the stake in hers.
Or Ken for short... He is the friend of the main character's grandfather and the owner of the hotel he lives in. He is composed, wise and kind.... Through the game this old man gives John many advises... And being the closest to John, he plays a big role in both stories of the game!!
In my opinion is the most useful character in the Kyoto Colorful Days.... the Visual Novel scene needs more characters like him... characters appear side characters but feel main characters in their personality and impact to the story!!
There are other characters in the game (Akane's father, Land Sharks and That boy in Madoka story), and though they are interesting... I wish they fleshed them out more.. if they did the game would be longer and maybe I can talk about how... even the side characters are smartly written.
Sound & Music
I'm not a good judge for the music but I liked it, and it made me feel the mood of Kyoto...
The voice acting is great though... as I said above... the game is voiced in Kyoto slang and not in the normal Japanese.
Even the side characters are voiced... I wished that the main character had a voice too... but it's the norm for the Visual Novel player character to be a Silent Protagonist.
This game was a great experince for me... my only complaint was that it is short....
If you want a small Visual Novel that makes you feel like you are there... or a Visual Novel where romancing a girl isn't all that matters... I highly recommend this. Especially when its on sale!!