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Game Info:

9-nine-: Episode 3
Developed by: Palette
Published by: Sekai Project
Release date; August 31, 2020
Available on: Windows
Genre: Visual Novel
Number of players: Single-player
ESRB Rating: Not rated
Price: $19.99

Thank you Sekai Project for sending us this game to review!

9-nine-:Episode 3 takes place in a parallel universe with a different chain of events. When you first begin this story it gives you a refresher of the premise of weird events happening in Kakeru’s hometown of Shiromitsugawa. After an earthquake destroys the town’s sacred shrine relic, powerful artifacts have made their way into the hands of students who use their newfound powers for good or evil. Those who are chosen by a relic are known as “users.” These events were foretold in a failed anime called “Mobius Ring, the Cycle of Reincarnation.”

Each episode has a different story route and love interest. Though I wasn’t a fan of the previous entry, it’s still recommended that you play the other two episodes before diving into this one. Many questions are answered in this episode including the identity of the evil eye user who can petrify people that make eye contact with them.

9-nine-: Episode 3
Highlights:

Strong Points: Fascinating story with lots of answered questions in this episode; superb visuals and good  voice acting
Weak Points: No story altering choices this time around
Moral Warnings: Every curse word and blaspheme possible is uttered throughout this game; sexual dialogue; violence and death; supernatural powers and references to other gods

The love interest this time around is with Haruka whose power allows her to charm and have male classmates flock around her. When her power is activated she has a confident persona, though in real life she’s quite timid, especially around boys. The are two groups of artifact using classmates and Haruka is on the opposing team despite not being comfortable with the leader’s use of violence to achieve his goals. She wants to switch to Kakeru’s team but he doesn’t want her to be put in danger so he pretends to be charmed by her and betray his team in order to gather intel on Haruka’s group.

Throughout this episode Kakeru learns more about his friends' abilities and his becomes less of a mystery. There’s a lot of treachery and back stabbing in this chapter. I don’t want to give away too many spoilers, but the story development is good despite the predictability of falling in love with the person you’re pretending to be in a relationship with.

9-nine-: Episode 3
Score Breakdown:
Higher is better
(10/10 is perfect)

Game Score - 88%
Gameplay - 17/20
Graphics - 9/10
Sound - 8/10
Stability - 5/5
Controls - 5/5

Morality Score - 45%
Violence - 4/10
Language - 0/10
Sexual Content - 3.5/10
Occult/Supernatural - 5/10
Cultural/Moral/Ethical - 10/10

When Kakeru and Haruka’s relationship becomes official, she starts spending the night at his apartment. Though they make out and take a bath together, it’s not explicitly stated if they have sex. The language is all over the board with many F-bombs dropped and some blaspheming. There is some violence and death in this story arc. When damage is inflicted the screen will flash red, not much blood is shown but it is described in the text. The artifact usage is similar to magic and there are references to other deities.

The visuals and sound effects are still top notch. The same background music is used and the voice acting is consistent with the previous episodes. I’m still captivated by the artwork and expressions on the characters. The colorful backdrops are plentiful and beautiful.

Despite being turned off by the inappropriate relationship route of the previous chapter, I’m glad I gave this 9+ hour episode a chance. I look forward to seeing how the future episodes will pan out.

About the Author

Cheryl Gress

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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