Saya no Uta is a short Visual Novel starring romance with detailed grotesque elements. Very Lovecraftian, otherworldly story that will take you on a journey made of different points of view of the involved characters.
The game’s duration is 6h approximately.
The premise of the story:
After Sakisaka Fuminori survives a car accident where his family doesn’t make it, everything starts appearing distorted and grotesque to his eyes as a side effect of a risky surgery treatment.
His everyday life flips completely as his friends start appearing as slimy lumps of flesh with grotesque stench and emitting alien noises while conversating. Keeping his condition a secret even from his doctor he manages to stay safe, however the self-isolation and detachment from others seem to be quite evident – as his friends excuse his selfish behaviours with the trauma he is dealing with, after the sudden loss of relatives.
A sudden encounter bringing along many mysteries:
A couple of days before the sudden change of personality, while being treated at the hospital, he stumbles upon a petite green haired girl named Saya, who appears to be looking for her father – Dr. Ougi who mysteriously disappeared from home, as well as from his working place; the same hospital where Fuminori is being recovered. For some unexplicable reason, Saya appears as a regular girl to Fuminori’s eyes. Quite cheerful, sweet and caring towards our protagonist even, becoming the light at the end of this nightmarish tunnel.
Fuminori offers Saya a deal – she can come living together with him to keep him company, and, in exchange Sakisaka is gonna find whereabouts about her lost father.
Therefore, Fuminori decides to interrogate his Doctor while attending regular checkups. While trying to gather clues about the case, however, the man’s identity is not put in discussion nor any details get revealed by Dr. Ryoko who seems to keep her mouth sewn about the man’s secrets.
The character development is well structured and refined to ensure that public will empathise with them by experiencing the story through all the viewpoints.
While Saya is portrayed like an innocent girl characterized by her pure semblances, the reality that is hidden beyond those aspects is way beyond the common idea of “gruesome”. Holding a deredere type of personality around her beloved, she ends up indulging into grotesque and alarming acts for the sake of the future of the two. Fuminori used to be a cheerful character hanging out with three friends in particular after studies. However, the accident and the acceptance of his condition do cause a drastic change of personage’s viewpoints and personality.
Giving up on what used to be his social life and personal image, he ends up distancing himself completely from the outside world and embraces a lifestyle that would be defined as horrific and self-sabotaging to human eyes. A lot of sacrifices have to be made in order to be able to live on with the anomalous condition which warps his senses, however, in exchange, he achieves acceptance and understanding of his dear companion.
Koji used to be Fuminori’s best friend which causes him to get involved in his friend’s private matters further on. Not a wise choice to keep a sane state of mind, however after a couple collisions between the two the sense of justice and revenge as well as the anger over losing a precious friend like Fuminori, takes over him.
The story is recounted so the reader can perceive the exact emotions and live through the same situations of the personages during the gameplay.
The first part represents well the bond between Saya and Fuminori, while the second displays Koji’s feelings mainly. The epilogue will make more clear the secrets and mysteries behind the story, as well as Saya’s true being.
The game does present few choices that will cause to affect the finale – with a total of 3 different endings accompanied by different OSTs.
While the game does not present any opening movie, it offers a variety of background music suited to the story generating the kind of calm, yet very dark atmosphere.
Nevertheless, a few scenes of action will be presented as well, with according music in the background. The stated scenes will be described in great detail with raw particulars.
Dialogues are mostly voiced and the gameplay includes lots of narrative text, compared to regular Visual Novels where dialogues are more often to be encountered. In fact, in this case we are talking about a NVL, that is a game which’s text box occupies most of the screen.
What I personally found more of value in this story is the concept of Fuminori and Saya’s bond. While being presented in such a crude way, in reality it is very fragile, as it is easy to destroy the little world they are living in.
The sudden light that catches Fuminori’s attention as he decides to give in to his terrific situation, Saya, inhuman as she is ends up being accepted by him. The diversity in their proveniences and the bizarre situation of the protagonist ends up into becoming an important connection between the two, resulting as his beam of hope, a reason to keep living.
No matter how dark, gruesome and hopeless the situation might have seemed to be, along with the secrets and the weight of the unaware surroundings crashing upon him, still, a sign was given to Fuminori that it is not yet time to put an end to it.
Fuminori’s development is described properly along with the detailed motives behind his actions, so that no matter how cruel his behaviors might become, starting from ignoring his friends, ending into getting involved in various accidents of noticeable importance, the public still has a way to empathize as to motivate why he is not the villain of the story. The whole idea of storytelling from different points of view is interesting and going through the reading results quite savoring.
Recommended if looking for a depressive story with gory details and literally craving for affection main heroine.
Not recommended if looking for a long read with multiple routes dedicated to different heroines.
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