Narcissu is a Kinetic Novel game about illness, human lives and bad decisions. It's a story about "disease and suffering" and one of the few short narratives that stick with you long after playing even with its simple writing and plot.
The [Steam Version] of The game has two games in one. the Original Narcissu and the second game Narcissu ~Side 2nd~. In this review I will only talk about the original.
A Boy and A Girl, Both of whom die.
The story follows unnamed protagonist a terminally ill young man who has been transferred to the 7th floor of the hospital to cure his illness. There he finds the quiet girl Setsumi, who's terminally ill and tells him about the rules of 7th Floor and that him being transferred here means there's no cure to his illness and he'll just wait to die here.
While hospitalized they meet everyday and one day they decided they don't want to die on 7th floor nor on their family homes, so they stole the car of the protagonist father, and went to travel across japan. they didn't have a goal at first but they eventually decided to go to "The Narcissus Fields" in some island a little far from them.
The plot is so simple & predictable. but the actual dialog, the topics the characters talk about are interesting and various, from philosophy to automobile coupled with funny and sad moments. the game take on topics like death, suicide, flaws in medical systems and so on is very interesting and will probably make you think "how to make our world better so things like these never happen again".
And finally, its short, it takes 2-4 hours of your time depending on your reading speed.
Doing Nothing But Watching TV in The 7th Floor
There's little to no Gameplay. the only thing the player does is clicking to make the story go forward. you can skip the parts you don't want to see and you can save/load at any moment but that's it. But even with no replayability and you don't have any choices in Narcissu, the game still worth playing and have more impact than reading a novel (opinions may vary).
The Developers of the game made some interesting choices for this type of games, they didn't add characters illustration for the most of the game stating that this way, the player imagination will fill the void.
In the steam version of the game you can play both voiced and unvoiced versions, both with different translations.. and that takes us to the next point:
Music and Sound
The music of this game suits the sad atmosphere of it (just hear), but you won't think it doesn't suit the happy moments of the game too.
The voice (the only voiced character is Setsumi) though only in Japanese adds more to the immersion, especially near the end, if you didn't feel emotional with the words alone, the way she says those words will do that to you.
If you want a thought provoking Visual Novel, I think you must play this game. it's free, small-sized and short so it won't cost you much.
I Recommend playing the game if you: like novels, VNs and want to read something makes you happy and sad at the same time, characters that you feel you relate to. and you want something simple yet deep that makes you think.
I Recommend not playing it if you Hate Novels, VNs or Games with no Replayability or Choices as this game is more like a novel with music and voices.
The game is free on Steam platform [Store Page].
I Enjoyed Writing This Review, Did you Enjoy Reading it? What Do You Think About This Game? please tell me in comments