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Kana - Little Sister Kana - Little Sister Kana - Little Sister Kana - Little Sister

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Title: Kana: Imouto (Little Sister)
Genre: Bishoujo
Platform: Windows XP/Me/98/2000
Credits: D.O. / G-Collections
FAQs and Cheats: Download Here

Help Menu Description: You have a sister by the name of Kana, who is 2 years younger than you are. You are an important figure to her; you have always watched over her. You have always taken care of her and loved her. Kana is also an important figure to you. It's not love or like, but it's something special. You care about her a lot and you feel that you have to protect her. You wish for her eternal happiness, but you just don't know how you feel about Kana. Yet...

HN Opinions
Average Rating:

skysenshi (08.13.2003)
Be Armed with a Kleenex...
Shocking as it may seem to a gamer who usually sneers at bishoujo games, this was the first of its kind that actually made me cry. (Uh, Kanon does not count because it was the anime version that made me cry, not the game.) The story is so sad, you swear you just want everybody dead so it would be over with. It's not actually far from what transpires in Kana.

The truth of the matter was, I was more depressed with the supporting characters of Kana than with Kana herself. You play Taka, a boy with a rather unique family. I say unique because it seems that a lot of people in his family have different sorts of diseases that conspire to break your heart. If it's not some terminal illness, the issue is about unrequited love. How much more ill-fated can you get?

As I have mentioned earlier, it's the supporting characters that make the game interesting for me. There's Sumako, Taka's aunt, who suffers from breast cancer. She has a daughter named Cana, a cheerful kid who unfortunately has hipatic insufficiency. There's free-spirited Yumi Kashima, my favorite character and Taka's first love, who later finds herself head over heals infatuated with Taka. And then there's Yuta Ito, a gorgeous bishounen who deems it his place to protect Kana at school. Taka also has a set of friends, whom I fondly call the F4 because of their similarity to the Hana Yori Dango / Meteor Garden gang, but they aren't given much emphasis.

I've been going on and on about the supporting cast, so I'm guessing you're wondering why the main characters didn't leave much of an impact on me. It's simple, really. Because they make the tale so…Mills and Boon. The big twist-slash-secret that's supposed to make me gasp and leap for joy is actually very predictable—so cliché, and so…convenient. Like it was placed there to justify all the forbidden desires and sexual tension that shouldn't have been happening in the first place.

All the endings are tragic, save for the true ending, Ending 1: The First Farewell. Nevertheless, I preferred Ending 6: Live Now over that happy, sappy, spill-mush-over-me true ending. Masochistic me, you say? Well, it's just that that was the happy but inconvenient ending, and it makes up for the convenient twist that would've made everything too sugary boring.

Now for the gameplay. Everything's perfect, except for three major flaws: (1) that the fastest skip page option is not fast enough; (2) that I have to hold my finger over the "Enter" button to skip through familiar dialogues quickly; and (3) the save data slots have a mind of their own. Flaw number three bothered me the most since the next empty slot will also be automatically occupied by your latest save. Meaning, it moves! And when all slots have been covered, they just re-write the first slot without your permission. It's a good thing there are Load Tabs, which divide your saves into folders, but that doesn't make it less annoying. People save into particular slots for a lot of reasons!

The artwork is okay, though I kind of expected it to look as impressive as G-Collections' earlier game, Kango Shicyauzo. This one feels too much like Precious Moments to be taken too seriously. I mean, imagine Precious Moments figurines doing the nasty. Ew. It is similar with Kango, however, in that there are times when the characters look like they've been carelessly cut and pasted over a background. You can see jagged edges around the characters figures. By the way, there is an option to save the scenes and images you want. I saved a lot of Yuta Ito poses (he he).

The texts are written over the images, a style that gives off an exceptionally dramatic effect. And the music! Score points for a sure winner when it comes to setting the mood! You just have to hear Shiroi Kisetsu, the opening theme. It's pretty addictive. In fact, I might just get myself a soundtrack.

Overall, I'm beginning to respect G-Collections for providing us with yet another game that exceeds expectations. (The first one I've tried from this company was Kango Shicyauzo.) Kana just needs some fine-tuning in the story-telling aspect, but it certainly rises a notch above all other clickathons. CD-ROM Extras include CG galleries, endings revisited, music listings, and character profiles.

Art/Animation: 7 Story/Plot: 8 Characters: 7 Sounds: 10 Gameplay: 7 Ecchi Level: 8