Hey, you remember when those degenerates at 4chan decided to make a visual novel, and how they were supposed to make something horrible and shameful and a blight on society but they threw a big curveball at us by actually making something really meaningful? What if Katawa Shoujo wasn’t just a one off? What if that exact same thing happened again? And while we’re playing with our fun little vision, let’s imagine that everyone was wearing giant furry hats while they were doing it.
And that brings us to Everlasting Summer. No, it’s not a 4chan game. Rather, this one came from the minds at… well, whatever they have going on at IIchan, a Russian imageboard. Now, I don’t know anything about IIchan. I got out of the whole chan culture around the time the edgelord thirteen year olds started flooding it. Which, really, aside from the somewhat shared origins, Everlasting Summer doesn’t really have a whole lot in common with Katawa Shoujo that isn’t absolutely standard for the form, so let’s let the comparisons drop there.
So, Everlasting Summer is a romance story that you can turn into a sorta-eroge assuming you hang around all the right (or very wrong) places on the internet. It’s Russian. Very Russian. It does its best to not be inaccessibly Russian, and does a very good job of that, but yeah, it’s Russian. Be prepared for that. Also, full of references to Russian imageboard memes that are guaranteed to fly right over your head. It first seems a slightly oppressive dark paranormal mystery, then turns into a light fluffy romance with somewhat malevolent overtones, then, when you know where to look, those overtones start taking over and the mystery comes way to the fore, then the story just kind of peters out without going anywhere at the end. Oops, spoilers. I did find it to be a pretty enjoyable ride up until then though. Also spoilers. Sorry if you were hoping to whiteknuckle things all the way to the end of this rollercoaster of a review.
Everlasting Summer places you in the surprisingly roomy pants of Semyon, an anime obsessed shut-in who spends his life on imageboards and who hasn’t had a meaningful interaction with another human being in years. I am struggling so much not to ‘accidentally’ confuse him with one of the many other people I know who fits the description. Continue reading