View Full Version : Flower, Sun, and Rain
July 7th, 2009, 02:44 PM
Has anyone played this, or have any interest in it? I want some impressions. It looks stylish.
July 7th, 2009, 04:15 PM
I'm intrigued by it too. We have someone on staff reviewing it right now so look forward to that review in the next week or two! I haven't heard from him yet what he thinks... As with ANY Suda 51 game, gameplay problems abound, but the story and style are good.
August 15th, 2009, 01:24 AM
I'm also interested in this one. Been playing Hotel Dusk and Trace Memory and need a Suda 51 game to hold me until No More Heroes 2.
September 13th, 2009, 08:58 AM
I have it, but have yet to play it. Contact was great, so... I will get to it this week and post my general ideas shortly.
September 18th, 2009, 05:00 PM
Here is my "review" of Flower, Sun and Rain. Enjoy!
Playing a Grasshopper Manufacturer title is comparable to watching Kurosawa's Dreams or reading Haruki Murakami. There are, contained within, threads of Magical Realism, pragmatic Nippon psychology wrapped and presented in a detective story style narrative.
My history with Grasshopper has as much depth as my relationship with the works of the previously mentioned director and author. There is a consistency within the foundations of the works that stems from the creators, in this case Suda 51.
Flower, Sun and Rain meet and exceeded my expectations in both story and presentation. The main character is deep enough to be plausible, yet empty enough to inject a bit of yourself. The storyline is interesting and engaging; I would liken it to Hotel Dusk: Room 215 and Trace Memory in delivery and pace. The pacing is relatively slow and of course a bit contrived. However, it is a great example of the Mystery genre on DS.
The limitations of the DS can bear upon the eye a heavy burden. The game is blocky and seems to glean it's style from No More Heroes. Grasshopper Manufacture has had a checkered past with it's titles in regard to graphics. There are points in the game where camera angles, music and colors mask the simple geometry and jaggy edges, then there are other times where the imagery is garish. After recently getting through with Contact I was used to this visual disparity. However, Hotel Dusk does a much better job in the graphics department. Suda 51 should have a played to the strengths of the DS, instead Flower, Sun, Rain looks like a first generation PSX title. Another caveat I had with this title, as tertiary to graphics, would be the camera. The camera in this game is a floating/fixed camera that shifts as the character/action moves around settings. It is subtly scripted, but often left to itself, gives strange views and/or obscures objects and characters. My issues with the camera are minor and really could have been corrected if Grasshopper would have taken cues from other titles ala Zelda: Temple of Time or their previous title Contact.
The audio is amazing. The music exudes "cool" Suda 51 style and the effects punctuate situations and interactions to a fantastic degree adding additional levels of significance to user interactions and character actions. The music evokes a Tarentino mood, love it or hate it he made Reservoir Dogs. There are very good tech arrangements of many famous public domain composers. All are gritty, stylized and appropriate to the themes. The voices are funny and strange. They sound exactly as though you played a record, or audio file, in reverse. Garbled and warbling and lacking specific definition beyond some approximation of tone they are fun nonetheless. When I first heard them I thought something was wrong with the game settings and I was hearing voice work intended for H. P. Lovecraft characters, but Eternal Darkness aside, time made them more palatable and often I found myself laughing at very not funny deadpan dialog. Often the dialog, which appropriate for a detective story, was "enhanced" by the unusual selection of voice samples. Overall, the audio is solid and compliments the title appropriately.
Where I found this game, like many of Suda 51's titles, to get a bit shaky is in the control. The dpad controls the character and interactions are done with the stylus. The face buttons can also be used in lue of certain stylus based interactions, as is the case with Catherine. I think the game would have benefited from a simpler layout with a fixed 3.5 overhead camera comparable to GTA: China Town Wars. As I mentioned before the camera flies around a good bit, at first it is a neat surprise, once that wears off it is just irritating. The character movement is not "tank control", but again it feels like an early 3D N64 or PSX game. The stylus is put to pretty good use, again similar to GTA on the DS with sudo scripted interactions.
Overall the title is fun and interesting. Flower, Sun, Rain is not perfect, but it is engaging and if you have enjoyed previous Grasshopper Manufacture titles chances are you will enjoy this one as well. There is a certain amount of surrealism added to an already strange story that has worked in other mediums and works well here. I have purposely been vague on the story and a few game specific points to avoid the dilution of your own personal experience. You can find this title online pretty cheap and it worth checking out if only for the experience of trying something that is original and unique in a game landscape saturated with mediocrity.
-Anthony Parr (GiantGreenGoat)
August 12th, 2010, 05:44 AM
I picked this game up over a year ago, played it for a bit and then never played it again. This game is confusing and it seems to have its own logic. I love Suda's games and this is no exception, I think I'll come back and give it a shot.
December 19th, 2010, 04:28 AM
I had this game for a few months before I finished it. It caused me pain to play & I am shocked I managed to stay with it to finish it. I had high hopes for this game, but sadly it failed everywhere.
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