Name: With You ~Mitsumeteitai~ (70.00% in 8 votes)
Company: Cocktail Soft
Release date: 1998
Reviewed by: Lamuness
Being a Cocktail Soft fan, how could I miss this highly-anticipated game? Sadly, the deluxe pack is less impressive than Pia Carrot 2 deluxe pack :(
The story focuses on the love triangle between you, Manami and Naori, who are your childhood friends since kindergarden. However, six years ago Manami left you and Naori with her family and moved to Myanma (an Asian country close to Thailand formerly known as Burma). This made you pretty upset and you are having many childhood flashbacks with Manami even today. One day during school while you were practicing track and field in school, a familiar girl with glasses stood in front of you. Again, these childhood flashbacks kept coming back, at a very fast pace. Then something triggered you and you finally recognize the girl as the "grown-up" Manami who returned to Japan after leaving for 6 years. And that's how the story begins, but that's only the start of a very emotional and enchanting adventrure and love story.
Personally, I really like the plot/big idea. I had no idea why Cocktail Soft chose Myanma at the beginning as the place of departure for young Manami, but later on in the story I begin to understand why. The main plot is really enriched with mysteries as well as romantic events. The fact that ALL the graphics are in hi-color mode (some are in 256 in pia carrot 2) proves yet another success of Cocktail Soft's extremely high-quality graphics. If you like the CGs in Pia Carrot 2 then you absolutely have no reason why you don't like the CGs in With You. What's also pretty nice about this game is that it became very user-friendly. There are a lot of commands like quicksave, quickload, dramatic mode, text skip, dialogue review that makes the game more easier to control, as well as other tidbits. The game also has a sorta "impression" parameter like the stars in Can Can Bunny Premier 2 which shows where you are standing in this love triangle.
Sadly, all games has its drawbacks, and With You is no exception. This is the most linear Cocktail Soft game I have ever played in my life. There is only one big plot and you only have Manami and Naori to have a romantic relationship with. The fact that the story is based on this love triangle makes the other female casts somewhat obsolete. But I guess it's okay due to the nature of the main plot. Also, some of the minor scenarios are pretty redundant and should might as well omit them. Although this is considered as a AVG, there isn't really any commands to use (like look/talk etc) except for some decision-making scenarios and some **occassional** school and town exploring. So this game lacks gameplay. Also, although the CGs are insanely beautiful, they lack variety. There isn't really alot of different CGs in the game. Pia Carrot 2, even if you take out the uniform permutations, still has more CGs than With You. There is VERY FEW Hscenes, which I don't find it a problem, but just telling (or warning) you readers about this. If you take out the Hscenes, the game and the story will still be solid. Also, the opening intro animation is done less impressively than the one in Pia Carrot 2 (the song is nice though).
So is With You worth playing? It depends on how you see the game. If you see it as an H-game, you will be pretty disappointed by the lack of gameplay and lack of H-CGs. HOWEVER, if you consider it as a "visual novel" (which is how I see the game as) like To Heart, then I think With You is a pretty nice game due to its powerful plot and less emphasis on gameplay.
This is the first Anime Densetseu review to have mp3 music files. I have encoded the With You's OP in mp3 format. It's only 300K big. Enjoy!
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