One day a brave American company called Hirameki International released a one-of-a-kind bishoujo game in the US. Why one of a kind? Because it doesn’t have any adult content, which is rare, (if not non-existent) in this kind of market. Almost all bishoujo games released in English has adult content, and so I’m quite surprised to see this DVD game (readily played on DVD players) in the US market. The game is called Hourglass of Summer (Natsuiro no Sunadokei). I saw its anime counterpart quite recently, and this is what I have to say.
Yes, this is also from Princess Soft, the company behind W ~Wish~ and Final Approach, both of which has gotten an anime conversion as well. It has a nice premise. Boy likes girl, but then one day the boy wakes up one morning realizing that he has “skipped time”, and that the girl of his dreams has been dead by an accident! What the hell is going on? And so with the help of a certain ‘time traveler’ girl, he travels back in time to try to change the fate of the girl he loves.
For one, the designs are absolutely beautiful, but both the CG and animation are kinda quirky in that part. Sometimes I see weird character designs, but other times it’s quite bearable. The pace of the anime is okay, but this 2-episode OVA never really took off too much in the first episode, while the second was quite good. It would have been better so see more episodes though, because there are too many characters that lost screentime because of the limited episode count. They would have been quite nice characters too…
Natsuiro no Sunadokei is one of those games that I can actually play because there is an English conversion, courtesy of Hirameki International! It is very rare that semi-popular titles like this get ported over to English, because most English bishoujo games are those unpopular adult-focused ones. The US bishoujo licensors dare not to tap into the really popular bishoujo games (such as those from Key and Leaf) quite yet. But I hope Hourglass of Summer is a step in that direction. Now I’m off to find the game!