428: Fuusa Sareta Shibuya De( Import Review)

One thing that is rare in gaming is interactive novels or stories. These type of games you usually find on the PC. However the PS3, PSP and Nintendo Wii got a very interactive game called "428: Fuusa Sareta Shibuya De." Is this story worth checking out? Or is it a snore fest?

Story - The story starts with a kidnapping within the Shibuya district. As the case gets more and more complicated, a number of unrelated people ends up being involved. There is a policeman, an ex-gangster, a virus researcher, a hothead veteran writer and a person dressed in a cat doll suit. As the fates of these people interweaves tighter and tighter around each other, more dirty secrets are revealed and eventually everything gets out of hand. To clear up the mess, its up to you to make the right choices.

Gameplay - The game as stated before, is an interactive novel. You really don't do much besides read and make decisions. Based on these decisions you will decide the outcome of the story. Throughout the story you will get tips that's highlighted in blue in the dialogue. This will help you make the right choice. Make the wrong decision and you will end up with a bad ending and will have to start all over. Since this game is heavy on Japanese on dialogue, you will gain a better experience if you are fluent in Japanese. However you can tell, by the picture stills and facial expressions of the actors, what is going on in the story. The game is a nice break from what we're use to playing on the PS3, Wii and PSP. It's a nice interactive novel, that will keep you interested even if you don't understand Japanese.

Gameplay Video

Graphics -The graphics uses real life picture stills, and real life cutscenes. It works great for the mystery and complex plot of the story. Based on the trailer we saw. We thought the whole game was an interactive movie. But the picture still animation works nicely. It shows real emotional depth to the story and helps you confirm your decisions. It's a bold and welcome move to include real actors instead of CGI people. It brings realism to the game.

Sound - The soundtrack sets the mood just right. The strings and piano compositions brings an intensity to certain parts of the story. There is also some cool Jazz tracks for some of the lighthearted characters. This is a soundtrack that adds to the game and moves it along. There is little to none voice acting, so the music plays an important role in the game and does well.

Replay Value - The story is engaging and consists of many scenarios. Each character plays a role and with multiple endings you are going to play it over and over.

Final Grade B+/8.5 - 428: Fuusa Sareta Shibuya De is a bold, brave game. It takes all aspect of gaming and throws it out the window. It's not for everyone, but for those wanting a good story and understand Japanese check it out. Is it worth importing? It would be a nice edition to your collection. Final Grade B+/8.5.