Foreword: Palette, I love you.
Haredoki, which is a more recent release of Palette, was arguably one of the more superior games. With various special effects and adorable character design, it is not surprising to find yourselves falling in love with these characters.
Despite this, I will warn readers that Haredoki is actually quite INFERIOR, compared to some other Palette games. While this may offend some people, I ask you to have an open mind as you continue down the review below.
Title: 晴ときどきお天気雨 (Hare tokidoki otenki ame; lit trans. “Occasional rain in clear weather”)
Release Date: November 25, 2011
VNDB Link: http://vndb.org/v5193
Game Type: Novel
“What is your wish?” This is the quote that Yuuya struggles throughout the story.
In a small town, there is a god who will be coming to protect the land. Yuuya and his Student Council group team is asked to meet with the god at the station, only to experience an accident where the god and Yuuya kiss. The god is very benevolent, but is rather powerless. However, everyone will soon see that even if someone is powerless, they are never useless.
The characters themselves are so cute \>w</
Story Length: Slightly long (~35 hours)
Complete Story Clearing Difficulty: Easy
Comments: One way story with separating choices near the end. It is easy to recognize the ending choices, as well as how to achieve them.
Character Design Rating: 8/10
Story Rating: 7/10
Game Quality: Moderately High
Overall Rating: 8/10
Rating Comments: Each character is charming in their own way, and you will notice that much of the storyline is very similar to Key. The story and background stories for each character match up well and will surely leave a heartwarming sensation as you finish each route. As a bonus, if you remember a game called “Moshimo Ashita ga Harenaraba”, by the same company, Tamami returns to this game (slightly older O_O) as a powerful exterminator.
Sexual Content: Moderate
AS EXPECTED FROM PALETTE!
Quite surprisingly, looking back at their history, the beginning of Palette was actually filled more with darker themed games than cheerful plot such as this. I was pretty surprised.
Nonetheless, this game was one of the better games that I’ve played in months, and is definitely a recommendation for anyone. After finishing Kanae’s original route, you’ll end up with a true route that’s slightly longer, but will nearly bring you to tears.
One of the most memorable things about this game is the bone-chilling moments. Just as a note, these are static images and letters, but some scenes will simply scare the living daylights out of you, simply because of the environment that the scene is presented. These scenes not only add realistic features to the story, but also a sense of excitement as the reader continues to read to find out what happened.
If you look closely, you can see that my avatar is Mizuki :)
Despite this, the game isn’t given a perfect 10/10. Why is this?
The answer is flaws in human psychology.
Call me whatever you want, but the main reason why this game is rated low despite my compliments for it, is because the characters’ mindset was inconsistent. For example, in Kanae’s (the god) route, Kanae avoids Yuuya because of the fact that she believes Yuuya doesn’t truly love her, and was only aiming for her body. However, throughout the story, you can see that Kanae is a strong character, who realizes her powerlessness, but tries her best nonetheless. Her being afraid of “not being loved” is contradictory with her “always doing her best”. As with Mashiro Summer, this inconsistency in the character’s psychology dropped its rating.
Kusukusu is DEFINITELY one of the superior graphic artists out there ^w^
Affection for the Characters: Very High
CG Quality: High (to the point that my crappy laptop couldn’t handle its special effects efficiently)
Music Quality: Good. Haredoki still managed to maintain the musical patterns from both Moshihare, and Mashiro Symphony, so that was actually a plus (if you look at these two games, you’ll see that I rated them high for their music.
Addictiveness: Moderately high. This is definitely a game I’ll be saving for the future.
Conclusion: A great game only flawed by its inconsistency in human psychology. Other than that, there are many plot twists, adorable stories, and lots of moments to laugh at.