A blog for reviews… that's really not much of a blog

Foreword: Well, I finally decided to get on with the Lump of Sugar games that I’ve been pretty much holding back because I’m a lazy butt like that.

And now I bring you their 6th game, “Hello, Good-bye”! Strange title as it is, I was immediately pulled in with its opening movie, and I definitely knew I was in it for a treat when I finished the prologue and moved into the main story.

It’s so strange… How a game that’s over 3 years old can be such a great quality in terms of both gameplay, scenario, and art while other games currently fall greatly inferior. Looks like I’ll be playing some older games while I don’t keep too high-hopes of other recent releases.

Enough chatting. Finished in literally two days, it just shows the quality of this game! I’m very proud to present you my review of “Hello, Good-bye”!

This is the end, and also the beginning…

Title: Hello, Good-bye
Producers: Lump of Sugar
Release Date: December 17, 2010
VNDB Link: http://vndb.org/v5316
Getchu Link: http://www.getchu.com/soft.phtml?id=686380
Game Type: Sci-Fi Mystery Novel with themes of Remembrance and Memory

Summary: He woke up due to the trembling of the monorail, and this was actually quite fortunate since the next stop was his destination. He takes a look at his fake identity he’ll be using to infiltrate the school: “Tobu Kaito”, and wonders if this would go well.

As soon as he arrives, he finishes up the preparations for transfer, and decide to get a good view of the town, since it’s the place he’ll be living here until his superiors order otherwise.

As he climbs a hill, he sees the entire town glittering in the sunset. He stares blankly into space, as he is suddenly greeted by a girl who was taking care of the lilies that bloomed on that hill.

“Don’t Forget”… That quote will continuously haunt him as he manages his life in Morino with the help of this girl, May.

Story Length: Moderate (20 hours)
Complete Story Clearing Difficulty: N/A
Comments: Quite an easy story to clear, all you need to do for the first three heroines is watch what “scenes” are being presented with each choice. The scenes you haven’t seen dive into each heroine’s route, while choosing the dialogue with the scenes you’ve already seen are leading to the ‘completion’ of the game.

Last route for Koharu opens only if you start from the beginning and skip all the way past the prologue to the message “Don’t Forget”.

Black-haired character + goth-loli outfit = Very much win.

Character Design Rating: 8/10
Story Rating: 7/10
Game Quality: High
Overall Rating: 8/10
Rating Comments: Extremely high rating game, I was truthfully surprised at such a design. Not only are the routes very descriptive, but each of the elements (such as the scenes being presented at each choice) represent the ultimate truth of the entire story. Story rating and character design rating falls slightly due to there being some holes in the story, but I’ll be getting to that in the comments section.

Overall GREAT game with consistent plot, lovable characters, and top-quality music/CG. Lump of Sugar has once again created a game worthy of being called “the Best Game” on Getchu. While not comparable to games like Tayutama, it still stands as one of my “highly recommended” games.

Character Summary:

May is first! The first girl that Kaito meets when he arrives in Morino (Sister Teresa doesn’t count), the readers can immediately see that this girl is calm and reserved, but also very friendly.  In the consecutive scenes, it is shown that May is actually pretty oblivious to many things, and quite unique in the sense she has a different mindset than others.

Slightly into the game, her “difference in mindset” is different in the sense that what might be considered “volunteering” to everyone in society is something that “she must do” for May. Simply put, when it comes to the uncivilized people who are being taken care of at the church, May is the first one to help out and offer her kindness.

This is why Sister Teresa sighs and comments that “You (Kaito) are also one of the people that May reached out to, huh?”

It is also shown that May’s family is actually rather wealthy (this is contradictory to her selfless personality), and her background is revealed in each route as the daughter of the newest president.

Despite seeming to be the main heroine, May’s route doesn’t seem to have much significance except to show the truth about Kaito. This is one of the reasons why story rating is lower than what it could have been, since there was nothing important in May’s route, at least relative to Koharu’s route.

Suguri is next. A very energetic girl, I kinda assumed this girl to be a “tsundere” type character at first, but my expectations were betrayed as I heard her voice and read her description on the homepage. Probably more “anaenbo” than even May, it is shown that Suguri somehow knows Tobu Kaito from somewhere, but Kaito himself obviously does not remember her. This is only after the reader is shown a scene where this girl suddenly bursts into tears (which is rare for Suguri), and this action keeps Kaito only more confused.

Well-known for her friendliness in class, Suguri’s CV, who is actually Gotouza-sama (I remember Yuko Goto by this name, because of her role in Lucky Star as that gangster woman who suddenly appears on one of the later episodes of Lucky Channel), and really… This gap is what makes me so attracted to her voice.

The infamous “Gotouza-sama”, with the artist trying to fully replicate her real-life looks (below)

I mean, it’s a biker woman who has the voice who can infatuate any freaking guy out there! WHY!?! HOW?!

I digress. Nonetheless, you can bet that I enjoyed Suguri’s route thoroughly (despite it sounding pretty cliche), admittedly due to her CV.

Third is Natsume, who transfers in after Kaito. Labeled as “Good transfer student” and immediately gaining popularity for her good looks, the reader’s first impression of this girl is that she is shy and introverted. Despite this, the earliest scenes involving Natsume suggests that Natsume has something against Kaito, as immediately hearing his name makes her expression change sharply.

After this, the reader is shown a series of scenes where Natsume follows Kaito. The funny part of this plot is that while the new transfer student tries to do this secretively, but others around Kaito realize this action quite early on.
Kaito, obviously being uncomfortable with this girl’s stares, confronts her–only to have the girl accidentally blurt out that she’s also someone like him.

Natsume’s route is utilized to introduce a certain character named “Masaki Jin”. This name appears occasionally in other places, and the reader may want to focus their attention whenever this name is used–since he is supposedly the story’s antagonist.

Other than that, Natsume’s route mostly involves her being unable to properly choose what side she wants to be in, since the main story reveals that she’s also a soldier sent to watch the actions of Tobu Kaito–this was really why she acted differently to Kaito than other classmates.

Despite this obvious flaw to her military abilities, Natsume is shown to be extremely skilled at sniping. The game uses the comparison that she casually scored 1107 in 12 rounds (92.25%), but the world record for 300m rifle is 1727 in 18 rounds (95.94%) according to ISSF (For the reference, anything over 90% is olympic-grade skills). This shows that this girl is highly skilled with all types of guns, and this is shown several times in her route, both when she aims the gun at Kaito or their enemies.

… and for the main dish, the Tower of Meat!

Last is Koharu, a young girl who makes a painful introduction (at least to Kaito), but doesn’t appear in the “main story” at all. Instead, she returns as the central heroine after you clear the other three heroines, and reveals the truth about the settings and background knowledge.

Ranked #1 on the heroine popularity ranking, I also found this character to be greatly favorable over other characters. Despite this, what I DIDN’T like was that this character did not make an appearance AT ALL throughout the entire game.

The only time Koharu appears is when she is first introduced in the prologue, and her own route, only available at the very end. I would’ve really liked it if Koharu made subtle and infrequent appearances within the main game, since she IS the heroine who explains everything and is considered the “omniscient” character. Really, this element (of how the most important heroine doesn’t make an appearance until her own route, and how every other heroine disappears in Koharu’s route) is what brought the story rating down greatly. Other than this factor, everything else was near perfect.

This is an SDCG in Koharu’s route, where it confirms that despite Kaito admitting to never have met Suguri, she still has some feelings for this person she has just met.

Sexual Content: Moderate

Comments: Okay. First, let’s discuss some of the holes in the story. The biggest one is the question about Kaito’s original assignment. Even though it was given to him by his superior (who also happens to double-up as his foster father), but it’s never clearly stated why he sent Kaito for this “ambiguous mission”.

Also despite how Getchu or other sites may represent the other characters, May isn’t really that important to the “true route” which is really Koharu’s route. She’s the “initiator”, but not the “critical factor” of the storyline. I guess they’re both important, but I would’ve really liked an extra “true route” where Kaito’s mission is clearly revealed, and he goes about finishing it.

…and May should also be involved in this “True Route” if at all possible.

Regarding the character design, Getchu (as well as the HP) listed some individuals I didn’t realize as the CV. A quick check on the database showed that most of these CVs are actually not active in the eroge producing, and rather work in anime or console-gaming markets. As I’ve predicted, this lead to really weak H-scenes, but I can’t really blame them for being inexperienced with eroge-voicing (or can I? +w+)

Natsume being really obvious in “observing” Kaito.

But there’s a LOT of background information in the prologue. The game explains that the current “fiction” Japan is divided into the United States of Japan, as well as the Japanese Federation. This actually reminded me slightly of Korea, my home country, since it’s divided into a Republican and Communist area, and still under a flimsy piece of paper (treaty) that can break anytime.

Nonetheless, the game explains that Morino, where the story’s setting takes place, is the place where the peace treaty for these two countries were signed, and therefore pretty darn important since it kept the peace for a long time.

Affection for the Characters: High

May’s actually a character who doesn’t get embarrassed easily since she’s so oblivious. You’ll see that this gets overturned in her own route.

CG Quality: High. LoS always has great CG worthy of coming back to. It’s no wonder they’re still in business as one of the best eroge producers.
Music Quality: Very high. Contradictory to much of the “cheerful” and “happy” kind of themes that LoS produced previously (and is constantly producing even now), this title had a darker theme I enjoyed thoroughly. Many of the songs contain a dark theme with a great e-guitar + bass. A lot of the background music also has “vocals” involving English.

I think the SDCG is really adorable :D

Addictiveness: Low

Conclusion: A superior Lump of Sugar game, which doesn’t come close to Tayutama in terms of quality, but still worth your time (in my opinion) compared to some of the more recent LoS releases like Heptagram or Magical Charming. Despite having a great story with a clear-cut plot, there are a lot of holes that may make the reader irritated (because I’m actually used to seeing these “holes” in LoS games), but if you don’t concern yourself with inconsistencies and just want to enjoy a game with great music and CG, this is definitely the game for you.

Just a random CG of Suguri, because I still like her best as a character.

Comments on: "Omniscience is not always a good thing… Review of [101217] Hello, Good-bye" (14)

  1. Good review, joyjason. If I may ask, can you tell me the endings of eqch of the four heroines? What happens in their endings? Also, one of the endings for Tayutama, what are you talking about?

  2. Kaori-chan komatterundesu said:

    Thank you so much, it finally worked out^^ Im the happiest man alife^^

    • Thank you for the review. Now we can read that game in English officially!

      Yeah, Natsume is acting so easy and strange… I don’t understand how she can be such a pro sniper and spy, if she can’t even act normally with people… Is it one of those LoS holes?..

    • @veshurik
      She is a pro sniper/soldier but at the same time she is a horrible spy. Those are two very different jobs so you can’t really say that this fact is a plot hole. In her first briefing she even comments on how she wouldn’t make a good “school spy” due to her inexperience in the field.

  3. Kaori-chan komatterundesu said:

    You are definately right, it is due to the difficult way to crack it. I read several guides but Im still too dumb to install it properly :) If you could help me with a guide like “How to install this freakin awesome game if you are an unexperienced person like kaori-chan komatterundesu” I would be so grateful^^

  4. Kaori-chan komatterundesu said:

    Hey dude, I know, Guys like me can be really annoying sometimes- BUT PLS I BEG YOU HELP ME WITH THIS GAME. How did you manage to run this game? I set my locale on japanese and even downloaded applocale and NTLEA but it still doesn’t want to start, it always says: only runs with japanese OS. I’m really doomed right now because I really bought this game (FIRST LIMITED EDITION) and its such a disappointment that i cannot play it -.-

    • Kaori-chan komatterundesu said:

      Sorry I forgot to say that all of the others LoS games work on my pc, just HGB doesn’t. I even downloaded the latest last week :3

    • Hey, sorry about the late reply. I haven’t been checking this review site as often

      Can you tell me if you were able to install it properly? IIRC, the game requires you to utilize virtual drives and all kinds of bullcrap, so that might be what tripped you up. In addition, you might want to try using NTLEA or messing with your systems (aka, Time zones or UI Formats) into Japanese times or formats.

      Not sure how I got it to work, but I definitely remember it was worth the effort. Good luck!

  5. Ah great,i was also thinking of playing some LoS games,it seems like tayutama and hello,good bye will be a great start for it.But as a happyending sucker can i ask if all heroines have good endings in those games or not(and if theres some who dont have it,i’d like to learn their names)? i will play even if its not,but knowing which one will have happy and which one will not makes me a little less depressed when it strikes.

    • Hi Akuurnal!

      Generally speaking, Lump of Sugar games tend to have a happy ending. For Hello, Good-bye, all four heroines have a “happy ending”.

      The exception is Tayutama, where one of the routes is technically not really a happy end. I mean, I cried a bit when I learned what happened, but it’s not a “bad end” either… It’s just a story with a sad ending.
      If you watched the anime “Tayutama”, you could probably guess which route I’m talking about.

      Despite this, I would probably say that particular route was “the best” within the entire story, and pretty much what made me attracted to LoS in the first place.

  6. Hunmm…I didn’t like Tayutama that much. Actually, I find it below average, that’s why I didn’t play Hello, Good-bye. But my opinion in this matter is questionable, since I am not particularly fond of Lump of Sugar games nowadays (I only like their 2 first titles, really). I am not a big fan of this art style either, specially the SDs (but again, this is questionable, since I don’t like SD in the first place). However, I must admit this must be the best looking title from this company I’ve ever seen! …Although, in my eyes, this doesn’t mean that much…
    I also think character design is not LoS’s forte, since the only heroine that I did not see on a lot of other games before (including their own games) is Koharu. I find the others to be so generic that pains me just to look at them…
    Even so, It’s sad that this never got an anime adaptation, because I think this one has a plot more fitting for it than Tayutama (and an awesome opening too). This would also be a rare exception where I actually would appreciate if they were to change the art style in a possible anime adaptation. I think the heroines would become more charming that way (just like with the To Heart anime), but this is just me though…
    Nevertheless, I will be giving another chance to those guys this month, as I will be playing “Sekachu” (and look! The same “actress” who did May is working there as Kokoro). The demo shows potential, I hope to hit the jackpot with this one!

    • Lump of Sugar has always been a double-sided company. You either really like them, or you really hate them. I’ve seen both sides of the coin, and I’ll have to admit that I’m generally favorable of them, mainly because while there is Tayutama, they usually create games with some form of deep theme. Of course, this factor kinda got thrown out the window with some of their more recent games, which is definitely a shame. I know of plenty of individuals who really loved Tayutama, but absolutely hated Magical Charming or Heptagram (frankly, I happen to be one of them! LOL)

      But I would definitely agree that this should’ve gotten an anime adaptation–music is awesome, and it would’ve been really nice if the producers can recreate some of the scenes that are presented in the game. It’s just a simple static image, but it got my blood hyped up in some of the battle scenes!!

      I don’t comment on the CG since I always tag this artist with LoS xD

    • I almost forgot: Nice reference you did there with “Gotouza-sama”! Recently, me and my little brother were remembering when we watched this back in the days. Good times…

    • Seriously. I was freaking traumatized when I realized that Yuko Goto voices many “cute” characters, but is also the same person in the picture (Lucky Channel).

      Still didn’t keep me from liking her anyways, so…

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