Grisaia no Kajitsu – First Impressions

She is the best. Don't hate.

This is Sachi.

Looks like it’s finally that time again. I’ve been posting rather scarcely as of late, mostly because I haven’t really had all that much to post about unless I start taking Mikotos mantle and start talking about anime, which I’m sure none of you would care for. The VN scene hasn’t really had anything noteworthy come out in awhile. I was thinking about doing a Steins;Gate one, but I might as well wait for the JAST release (if you haven’t heard!) before I do that. So, yes. I’ve been cheating on my visual novels with terrible things known by some as anime. Terrible, I know, but I must make do. It was pretty enjoyable though, thanks to some great recommendations. Finally, it is time though. I leave a bunch of anime, a book series and tons of other things compeltely unfinished as the great productive lad I am.

I’m a terrible person.

Mihama Academy – on the surface, a closed learning environment established to nurture students who find themselves at odds with the world around them; in actuality, an orchard-cum-prison built to preserve fruit that has fallen too far from its tree.

Whatever the circumstances behind its establishment, Mihama Academy is at present home to five female students, all with their own reasons for “enrollment.” For better or worse, each girl has established a routine obliging of her current situation; life moves at an idle, yet accommodating pace within the walls of Mihama.

Yet with the arrival of the institute’s first male student, the nearly preposterously opaque Kazami Yuuji, the students at Mihama begin to fall out of step with their predetermined rhythms. Will Yuuji prove to be the element the girls around him needed to take hold of their lives once more, or will the weight of their pasts prove too steep a wall to overcome?

And in the first place, just who is Kazami Yuuji? While the true nature of the “job” he is wont to alight to at the most haphazard of moments remains shrouded in secrecy, one thing is for certain – his encroachment upon the quiet orchard known as Mihama Academy will prove itself momentous in one way or another. And of course, one cannot discount the possibility that perhaps Yuuji himself carries the weightiest past of any of the students… (v5154)

(Jesus that’s a mouthful. I wonder if anyone’s going to ask what an orchard-cum-prison is.)

I can’t really tell explain all that well why I was/am so giddy about Grisaia. I want to just kind of toss it out as a ‘good feeling’ but I feel like I should be able to justify my own hype. I have always been a fan of character-centered stories and it seems Kajitsu is at least partially in that direction. Sometimes even entirely in that direction depending on who you ask. And all the characters (when Fujisaki is writing them, at least) seem to be quite great and enjoyable in their own ways. Except for Yumiko. She’s a little.. prickly. Replacing ‘hello’ with a boxcutter is never going to be a good way to win affection. And she just seems to be a bit.. stale in comparison to the rest of the very quirky cast. We’ll see, though. Hopes are not high.

Everyone else though is quite the colorful basket of winners. Amane seemed generic at first glance, but she seems to have a lot going on inside her head. And the constant need for Yuujis man meat is quite off-putting, so we’ll see. She also manages to be pretty amusing in her own perverted way. I don’t think I’ll ever forget that marching song that she helped create. Gave me a pretty good laugh. She also comes with her own personal munchkin named Makina. Voiced by Tamiyasu, too, who does a phenominal job voicing her, I must say. I do wonder what is up with Tamiyasu girls always being compared to cats.

And on the other side of things we have some balls of insanity in the forms of Sachi and Michiru. Michiru pretty amusing. Idiot characters sometimes get on my nerves but Michiru just seems so.. genuinely stupid from everything to how she talks to how much effort her seiyuu puts into voicing her like an idiot that I can’t get annoyed with her. She’s just hilarious. Not sure how I feel about having sex with the voice of Navi and Laharl, though. We’ll have to cross that bridge when we get to it. She’s been quite the catalyst for laughs. Sachi is close, though. She’s a great mix of hilarious and cute. Have never been one for maids myself but maybe Sachi can convert me. I’ll me maid-fetishing (Is that a thing?) with the best of them. Fun girl. My fav. As noted.

Not that this game is just character based, though, which brings me to the protag Yuuji, so is very.. non-self insert and seems to be pretty solid and memorable with the rest of them. His analytical approach to everyting just really makes you feel like you are playing someone really intelligent and pretty different. Being in Yuujis head so thoroughly also lets you catch glimpses of whats behind the school and the ‘bigger picture’ as it were. It leads to a good bit of intrigue as you go and mess about with the girls.

If I were to voice a complaint, though, it would be that it becomes very, absurdly obvious when Fujisaki is not writing. Fujisakis verbosity and his ability to cram words (with a sledgehammer if need be) is very obviously his own, and the other writers.. do not do this. I haven’t seen enough of the others to really say if they are ‘bad’ or not, but it’s very simply ‘not as good’. That’s all, though.

makina pls

The common route is also very funny.

Also, I don’t typically mention translation quality here but I feel like Koestl did such an amazing job it deserves a line of praise. If for some reason Koestl reads this, it’s so far been a pleasure. Thanks and goodjob. This writing is highly verbose and to make it come across so clean in english is something I should give a thumbs up to. A lot of words that I haven’t even seen used in fiction in a really long time and capturing Fujisakis verbose brilliance so naturally deserves praise.

So, what am I doing first? Probably Amane. I have been told to skip Yumiko entirely, though, but for the sake of laying down a plan, it would probably be Amane > Sachi > Michiru > Yumiko > Makina. I’ve been told to leave one of Fujisakis routes for last as his are supposedly the best. And Makina is so cute I feel like it’d be good to end on that note.

Anyways, so far very little to complain about. Also some of the most fun and best character interactions I’ve had the pleasure of seeing. I have quite the tolerance and even have a liking for random funny nonsense common routes like this and Rewrite and some others. It’s always so much fun and this one so far has not disappointed to entertain me. First impressions are fairly high and quite promising! Although the inclusion of other writers does worry me a bit as to where the other routes might go, but might just be anxiety.

So, let’s not drag this on longer then it has to. I want to go back to reading. Not sure if I’ll do episodic or a full review of the whole game yet. We’ll see.

2 thoughts on “Grisaia no Kajitsu – First Impressions”

  1. “Good for you. Good for me”

    Words can’t express how much fun, incidentally, hilarious Grisaia is. Yuuji’s POV and delivery are something else. Interesting, thought-provoking, and right to the point.

    My order is currently Sachi > Michiru > Yumiko > Makina > Amane

    Based on the walkthrough and key save points this seems to work the best. Incidentally, based on what I read Amana/Makina are left for last since their routes have the most impact than the rest. I say that with much regret as I wanted to read Amane first but it looks like I’ll leave it for last.

    I’m with you about Yumiko not being very likeable, but after a couple more hours into the game she’s becoming easier to like and such. There are some rather hilarious situations involving her. I also wasn’t much of a fan of the others at first either but right now all the routes seem like they’ll be a true blast.

  2. @Keikakudoori

    I actually highly recommend reading Amanes first and Makinas last. Makinas deals most with the plot of the whole series, so I think its best to leave it for the end and it’s definitely the highest point of the game.

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