Connor McKay took a trip to Japan without ever leaving his house…
Are you a fan of Japanese culture? Have you ever thought to yourself ‘hmm, I fancy a trip to Japan’? Well with this quirky and colourful visual novel you can go without even getting on a plane. Go! Go! Nippon! was developed by Overdrive and gives the player the opportunity to see the sights of Japan, with the help of two beautiful guides.
You play as yourself, as you take your dream trip to Japan. While hoping to stay the week with a pair of brothers you met in an on-line chat room, you discover in a strange twist that the brothers are actually sisters. The sisters quickly endear themselves to you and become your tour guides as they show you the various cities, shrines, restaurants and landmarks.
With the wise decision to not show the player’s face and allowing the player to input their own name, Go! Go! Nippon! manages to become an immersive experience. Less than ten minutes in and we found ourselves addicted to this simple yet open game. From having fun with characters through a tried and tested dialogue tree, or exploring the environments; the game promotes the idea that it is your visit by allowing you to choose from a selection of landmarks and locations that can be explored in any order. During your visit you will see many sites and wonders and learn some interesting things about Japan along the way.
All of these facts are easily explained through the character’s interaction with you and the dialogue is written well enough to make the characters feel like much more than fact spouting robots. More than that, the dialogue manages to create a very natural humour that highlights the huge culture clash between Western and Eastern society and has you genuinely liking the characters.
However, it’s not all about what the characters do or say, even though the game’s a visual novel, it has to play well as well as look good. From the beginning, Go! Go! Nippon! displays some amazing artwork. The title screen is bright , warm and welcoming (with a catchy jingle to boot). The sisters are designed in a clever ‘look-alike and yet unique’ way, sharing similar physical characteristics but with drastic differences in clothing and style. The backgrounds and objects with which you interact with are also designed well, but some can be a little distracting. However with the characters and text box taking most of the screen room you’ll hardly even know.
Sadly, the game sometimes bugged out and crashed, or even took an ungodly amount of time to load a scene. To top it all off, we were unable to save the game!
If you like the Japanese culture and enjoy the idea of being shown around the country by two cute and funny girls, sometimes getting yourself into weird situations, all the while learning about Japan then come take your first trip to Go! Go! Nippon.