Nutaku asked us to take a look at this game, and here’s our opinion.
Ladies and gentlemen, we’re back. It’s that time of the year again. The more socially-driven holidays will be upon us starting in a few weeks, and it’s the portion of the year where I sit in silence wondering if next year will finally be the one where I have people to spend it with because this one isn’t looking so good. And what better way to combat an attention deficit than by revisiting a yandere franchise, am I right fellas?
Make no mistake, Crimson Gray: Dusk and Dawn is by no means a second installment of the game. The developer, Sierra Lee, has made it clear that it’s more of a little expansion and thus the file name is appropriately labeled Crimson Gray 1.5. It takes some time to flesh out the ending a little better and offer something more grounded than the previous ending in which… damn this is the first time I’ve had to put a SPOILER warning in one of these.. they run away together. Seeing as how it’s just an expansion, it clocks in at a small 164MB download and only costs $4.99 on Nutaku. It runs using RenPy just like the last one so a refrigerator should be able to handle it. Now without further ado…
Normally I’d talk about the art and music here but I’d simply be repeating myself. The artstyle stays consistent with the initial game that I reviewed, and I want to say I even recognized a few of the music tracks from the original. They were good before and they are good now. So instead of going down that road again I thought I’d mention how this game has some nice touches. In the first game you play as John (the boyfriend), but now you’re in control of Lizzie (the yandere). This switch allows for some cute visual effects. For example when Lizzie encounters potential threats to her relationship, the screen may grow red. In other situations when you need to make a choice the mouse will constantly slide toward the most insane choice, forcing the player to physically feel with the mouse how her mind naturally gravitates to violence and paranoia. These little touches were completely optional but adding them helps to further distinguish Lizzie’s viewpoint from John’s and in turn the expansion from the original.
A rice man once said “he confuses you with big words”, and I’ll admit, I had to put on my big boy hat for this little expansion. You get so used to reading the lowest bar of writing possible with porn games that when something comes along with an expansive vocabulary, ya have to do a double take. The writing here is just as strong and consistent as the previous installment. Descriptions are detailed and characters sound different from one another. You probably won’t garnish a life lesson from the story but it’s certainly the most realistic depiction of a yandere in a porn game that I’ve ever witnessed. Going back to the whole detail thing for a minute, when Lizzie refers to John as a pronoun (He, Him, His) it’s capitalized to show her idealistic view of him. This later comes up as John worries she’s more in love with the idea of him rather than the true him. See what I mean? You have some real concepts and debacles at play here.
If you recall, the sex was the one area that I heavily criticized in the past. I mentioned that it felt more thrown in rather than a part of the story. So, does this expansion address the issues I had??? Not really. There are a few scenes here, and while they do feel more in pace with the narrative this time, they still lack what I’m looking for. Don’t get it twisted, the descriptions are absolutely fantastic. You get all of the juicy details of what’s happening and how it’s pleasuring this couple physically. However, the dialogue/description balance is completely fucked. Neither John nor Lizzie open their mouths to actually talk during the sex that much. Who cares? Well, descriptions are great but by themselves they don’t offer much uniqueness in the sexual world. I could go to countless places across the Internet and find scrumptious descriptions that let me visualize the act of having sex. But I can’t go anywhere else other than Crimson Gray to see John and Lizzie fuck. Are you picking up what I’m putting down? I know I’m biased in favor of dialogue, but using it to inject characters into the sex makes the scene stand out from the crowd. And since this is a yandere-themed series, I’d like to see that reflected in the sex somehow. It doesn’t have to be crazy bloodplay (though I would be down for that, developers); it could merely be Lizzie repeatedly shouting John’s name in a frantic manner at her climax or going crazy while they fuck. Anything other than your typical vanilla sex scene.
Listen I know you're supposed to be quiet in a library, but since you're going this far can you just say something?
And there you have it. Some things never change, and some things do. I’m gonna give this expansion a 3/5, but fuck the number. If you like yandere stories and literature, go ahead and pick it up. If you want some hot sex with a yandere, look elsewhere. That’s the best advice I can bestow.
Will you be checking out this expansion? Are you a freak ready for some more... hardcore yandere visual novels? Let us know in the comments below!