Visual Novels - because insomnia builds character.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Planetarian ~The Reverie of a Little Planet~ CD-ROM Edition

Planetarian is the story of a dying world, a living robot and the man who interacts with both. While it is a short piece and a simple piece it is one of the best works in English today.
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Graphics - The graphics are simply wonderful. The art is detailed and lively. Event CGs are interspersed through out the story and the sprites vary frequently. No skimping on backgrounds either. 10/10

Music/SFX - The music is very good, setting the mood quite well. I have found my self sitting and just listening to the jukebox mode over and over. 10/10

Voice Acting - This is the main difference between editions. The download editions have no voice acting (except the first line in the prologue ?), the CD-ROM edition has voice acting for Reverie (Yumemi) only and the PS2 has full voice acting. I am reviewing the CD edition. Reverie's voice was done excellently by Keiko Suzuki. I am looking forward to her performance in Little Busters! as well. The voice fit perfectly and added significantly to certain scenes in the story. Only downfall was the lack of voicing of other (albeit very minor) characters. Partial voicing tends to bug me (Except the protagonist. I don't like them voiced) but I understand it since these characters consisted of maybe 15 minutes of the entire work. 9/10

Story - The story is a bit slow to take off but pays off entirely. Reverie as (practically) the only other character is developed magnificently. This is a very character driven story. If you don't like such things make sure to try the trial before you decide to buy this or not. Insani's translation also is wonderfully done, with such details as adapting the characters name. (Something I don't normally agree with but the meaning of it is important to the story.) 10/10

System/Extras - All the normal features of a modern professional game engine (RealLive) including auto-mode, skip mode, log mode but also with a chapter list for loading and a beautiful GUI for the save/load menus. The extras are the usual Music and CG modes. 5/5

Overall - Wonderful game. Us English speakers should feel grateful that someone went through the effort to translate and release a patch to us no matter how difficult acquiring a copy can get.

Score - 44/45 - 98% - exceptional


How to get a copy of Planetarian

Insani's patch is designed for the original download version of Planetarian. However this version has been replaced by a new DRM system . The patch no longer works for the new system. Due to much piracy of the original version, Insani (understandably) refuses to release anymore commercial patches including ones for other versions of Planetarian and does not condone any other patches with their translation. However it is quite possible to patch the CD version and this is what I have done to play this story. There are instructions on how to do that here. The CD version is available from Himeya Shop here. If you can read Japanese you can purchase the new download edition here or the PS2 edition here.

1 comment:

Jyuichi said...

An extra note for all you all with the CD-ROM version - There is a bonus vocal song track buried the game you cannot access with Insani's patch installed. The file is called BGM09.nwa To convert this track to something useful you can use nwa2wav. (use google or get it from Ayashii Gamesubs ). This is the short version of "Song of the Rotation of the Spheres" sung by Mell.

Another musical note, "Song of the Rotation of the Spheres" is composed by my favorite poet, Kenji Miyazawa. The song "World of the Stars" and "Loving Depths" are also rearranges of the hymm "What a Friend We Have in Jesus".