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Reconquista レコンキスタ [Cotton Soft]

kivandopulus

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Foreword: Cotton Soft debut work Natsumegu did not snatch stars from the sky, but Reconquista seems to have a totally different, serious approach and thus arouses interest.

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Synopsis: 

There is a certain town on a reclaimed island. It was developed as an international residential area, but it's in ruins now. And there is a rumor that if you walk around there at night, a girl in school uniform will appear and cut off your head...

Youtube:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=esl-hAk-6M8&list=PLs4Gp5VU4Fv_3HkMSokjrZXfwZiVI0FIR

Game type: Suspense mystery

Character Design rating: 8/10

Protagonist rating: 7/10

Story rating: 8/10

Game quality: 8/10

Overall rating: 8/10

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Due to mystery genre there are limitations to what can be revealed, but at least concept should be laid out to understand what to expect. So, different characters miss beloved dead people, and there is a technique to bring back the dead, but the key to it is urban legend about beheading woman. Game has three chapters that can be roughly described as present dimension, past dimension and true route that can be called future dimension just for sake of simplification. First present Chapter is the largest one, and it contains two protagonists zapping views and all the four heroine endings. We do approach beheaded woman in each of those routes, but in the same manner, so mystery does not really get developed, it's just observation from different angles. Past and Future chapters are focused on the mystery roots and nature, correspondingly. 

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So mystery gets focused extensively, and everything gets explained, so even some emptiness is felt due to limited possible interpretations. But game touches important humanity questions for us to explore ourselves. Does one human life worth sacrificing another one? How does it cope with the concept of eternal soul? What will happen if everyone starts sacrificing other lives to save their beloved ones? Madness becomes the main theme of the game - and it contaminates not only maniac's mind, but even heroines minds who start to lose grip with the reality and ethics. 

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Game actually reminds me old game Kurenai by light. Same madness dominates the air, same bloody scenes everywhere, even main heroine of the two games basically looks and feels the same - in this game it's Kureha (even name seems to bear reference). Different heroines sing famous Japanese horror Kagome song which becomes a symbol of madness. I should also mention great BGM that contributes to the atmosphere a lot.

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But aside from Kureha, heroines aren't developed much. Loli daughter Momiji is also greatly portrayed, but she is not a capturable heroine, luckily. Shiina also feels alive with her bitter attitude compared to more ordinary heroines Mahoko and Masaki who have their share of charm, but that's it, no development. Male characters in this game are especially subtle and passive. All characters are normal people without special abilities, so at times lack of excitement is felt.

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Reconquista story is not that complicated, but thanks to four protagonists zapping and different chronology it gets rich in taste and details. It's not our usual fluffy happy end game. It leaves reader with touching moment, heavy feeling, hope and afterthoughts to linger on.

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