Review: Amnesia: Memories (PlayStation Vita)
- Release Date (NA): August 25, 2015
- Release Date (EU): August 26, 2015
- Publisher: Idea Factory International
- Developer: Idea Factory International
- Genres: Visual Novel
- ESRB Rating: Teen
- PEGI Rating: Twelve years and older
- Also For: Computer
Single playerLocal MultiplayerOnline MultiplayerCo-operative
The Space Between Dimensions
Amnesia Memories starts off with you, the main character, in the ‘space between dimensions’ greeted by Orion, a pointy-eared spirit. He’s somehow occupying the space where your memory used to be and wants to help you get it back. But the thing is, you don’t know in which dimension you belong to, so it’s up to you to choose from the four available (heart, spade, clove, diamond). In each dimension, you are initially dating a different person. All characters from the other dimensions are present in each dimension but they occupy different roles. From there on, you’ll have to make wise choices in order to regain your memory without anyone suspecting your condition and also build the relationship of your choice.
Being a visual novel, you don't have much to explore but rather have to focus on the narrative. And Amnesia: Memories has a pretty strong one. From the beginning of the game you have the choice of four different storylines, with totally different approaches. Within these your choices, reactions and conversations matter and you have to carefully choose them in order to avoid suspicion and they also determine how your relationship with your partner develops.
You have to keep in mind three parameters while you game: Affection, Trust and Suspicion. You'll ideally aim for high Affection and Trust values and low Suspicion so that you'll have a "Good" or "Normal" ending. However, with a high Suspicion value, you'll likely get a "Bad" ending. These parameters' values fluctuate as you play the game and make choices. But you can experiment a bit with the possible outcomes of your choices by abusing the system's saving/loading feature. That's where it gets interesting. With over 20 possible endings, the game will tempt you to play it over again, this time in different dimensions and/or different choices.
As you progress through the game, you'll have to read through the game's narrative and will have to choose between given options when prompted. The game is mostly controlled via the Vita's touch screen, although you can use the physical buttons. But the touch controls feel more intuitive and make the experience on the Vita all the better.
The visuals are like eye-candy, especially if you are an anime or manga fan, you can relate to the style. The characters are well designed, and highly detailed. The backgrounds are less detailed but are of a soothing hue. However, in the long run the visuals get a little repetitive and the backgrounds feel bland. The only parts in motion are the characters' face and... the text. For a visual novel where you're set to spend hours on, those issues are noticeable.
While the voice-overs are in Japanese and the subtitles are in English, anyone can realise the professionalism associated to it. The characters' voices are very expressive and convey the emotions as required. However there are no English dubs but you can still switch off the voice-overs if you don't want to work on your Japanese.
The soundtracks, although not the game's strongest feature, are original and compliment the game's atmosphere.
Two mini games are also included: Rock, Paper, Scissors and Air Hockey. You get to choose your opponent and you control the games mainly via the touch screen. Although not related to the main game, they are a nice feature if you need to take a break from dealing with your amnesia and relationships.
Amnesia: Memories is a visual novel that gets to be a dating sim, detective and otome game at the same time. Being Idea Factory International’s first in this genre, it surprisingly succeeds in bringing an enjoyable experience. Even for the most skeptical macho gamer, this game will provide a decent amount of fun and an insight to visual novels and dating sims.
+ Intersting story
+ Various storylines and endings
+ Great voice acting
+ Fun mini games
- Repetitive images
- Still images make the game look bland at times
- No English voice-over
With beautiful graphics and detailed characters, this visual novel is a visual treat except for the times that it gets repetitive with the same images and backgrounds. But the game makes up storywise.
The touch controls feel natural on the Vita and the game seems tailored for the console.
With four different dimensions (and a bonus one) to explore with different combinations of choices, you can expect to play this game over and over and it be like playing a different game each time.
out of 10
(not an average)
You'd be surprised by how interesting this game can get even if you've never imagined playing a dating sim/otome game. Give it a shot and you'll be just a few choices away from your husbando!