Best In Shoujo: Katawa Crash

By Richard Cobbett on January 16th, 2012 at 6:12 pm.

It's not weird, you're just a philistine.

Last week there were a couple of games that brought up the question of what actually counts as a game. One of them shouldn’t have, because it turned out to be a passing ice-cream truck. The other was Katawa Shoujo, which occasionally teetered on the edge of that which people were willing to tolerate – that a reviewer could be bored by a slightly creepy visual novel about dating definitely-not-underage-at-all disabled girls without being some kind of illiterate, word-hating dunce. Which obviously John is, but that’s not the point. Luckily, you can now enjoy that experience in a brand new form – one in which you occasionally get to press some buttons.

It’s called Katawa Crash, which you may find not-so-oddly reminiscent of a game called Nanaca Crash from a few years ago, but with the craziness ramped up beyond the impossible. Here are our impressions of it after a couple of plays:

“DADADADADADADA! SPROING! BOING BOING! WHEEEEEE! BONK! BOING BOING! WHEEE! YEEEEEEEA! BOING BOING BOING! SMACK! KAPOOOOW! FOOM.”

We also do a splendid Peter Molyneux.

The main character’s name is Hisao. He has a heart defect. Playing this game involves launching him at high speed out of a hospital and making him smash into obstacles and get beaten up by girls. Getting a high score will certainly kill him, and you will be a monster. Enjoy!

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50 Comments »

  1. RiptoR says:

    Nanaca Crash… Spent hours wasting my time with that flash game at my previous job.

    • Lambchops says:

      Mentioning Nanaca crash made me feel old and I just remember it from bacj in high schooll several years ago. If you played it at a job you must be positively ancient! This makes me feel somewhat better. Sorry!

  2. Kaira- says:

    Wait, what was the other “un-game” last week? My short-term memory isn’t quite what it used to be.

  3. CMaster says:

    As the link to the game up there is a link to 4chan’s /f/ board, it probably won’t last all that long.

  4. zairekaboom says:

    Press some buttons, eh? I tried this yesterday. I launched him, leant back on my chair, watched him fly for 2 minutes and quit the game, because there was no interaction.

  5. Wulf says:

    ...Best in Shoujo. Really Richard. Really?

    I can‘t see anyone topping that pun today.

  6. CMaster says:

    15769.80m

    Although I got bored and got on with something else instead, so I don’t know what eventually stopped me.

  7. Squire says:

    25,969.74m

    Am I the winner?

  8. TychoCelchuuu says:

    I like how the city is Seattle.

  9. Vagrant says:

    Interesting. You press start at the beginning, then watch for a long time as you careen between characters that pass by too quick to realize who they are. It’s like the actual game without the dialog!

    • Vagrant says:

      And then a cutscene event happens and you’re not really sure why and it keeps going on.

      Yup, just like the game.

    • Vagrant says:

      I like when you get the special for the blonde chick and you can’t see anything happening and you think it’s bugged but then oh yeah she’s blind! and it’s not very funny.

  10. Author X says:

    It’s like Nanaca Crash, but I can read the instructions! Which, somehow, takes a bit of the fun out of it.

    Oh well, while I do like Kuusou Rumba, it’s a poor substitute for Zuuuuuuuban!

    And now to go back to playing Nanaca Crash. Thanks for the nostalgia trip.

  11. PleasingFungus says:

    I was reading up on Nanaca Crash a few months ago, on Wiki – oddly, it’s also based on a Japanese porn game. (Which I never realized when I played.)

    Something about the genre, I guess.

    • Tokamak says:

      Indeed. And a vastly, vastly superior one at that – at least with respect to the writing. Maybe ol’ Johnny boy should give it a go before writing off the majority of the medium as pedestrian.

    • Author X says:

      The difference is that, like Nanaca Crash itself, the game it’s based on is actually Japanese. And was developed without the influence of 4chan.

      I’d guess it’s probably intentional that the internationally-developed fan-made VN spawned an English-language fan-made Nanaca Crash clone.

  12. menderslan says:

    Hum… so the link I clicked there from the article has been blocked and categorized by my workplace as pornography. Interesting, RPS. Interesting.

  13. dontnormally says:

    distance: 11979.75
    height: 258.61
    what: did i just play?

  14. Bhazor says:

    I just want to point out that despite all the warning signs Katawa Shoujo is supposed to be a genuinely good and well written visual novel. With realistic and well rounded characters coping with their disabilities.

    Between this and that 4chan S.T.A.L.K.E.R megamod its surprising how sincere they can be. Its like getting a handmade christmas card with a prison mailing stamp on the back.

    That said they are also making a My Little Pony hentai game. In the demo you fist Rainbow Dash.
    Game. Of. The. Year.

    • Jetsetlemming says:

      Their STALKER mod (LURK) was terrible though. They took out artifact equipping and turned up the bloom to a thousand (or nine thousand if you’d like), super annoying. They haven’t got shit over the Russians, with mods like People’s Soup, SGM, and Misery.

    • the_p says:

      No, I believe it’s supposed to be terrible, at least according to me.

      And perhaps it is sincere, but realistic ahemno and as for well-rounded characters, I’m not sure what’s round about the one who won’t shut the hell up about the student council but noidon’tthinksoeither.

    • paterah says:

      No LURK was amazing but it was only for a specific group of people since it was extremely realistic, it removed the HUD if I remember correctly etc.

    • Kronic says:

      Really enjoyed LURK myself, was the last SoC mod I actually completed a game with. :P

  15. Baka says:

    STUDENT COUNCIL GET :(

    • the_p says:

      Likewise. And to think I’d just passed thirteen thousand without having looked at the damn thing since setting him off. :(

  16. Yehat says:

    Hm, to my huge surprise I kinda liked KS, or at least the path I read through, despite the amateurish writing and, well, “adults-only animesque visual novel about disabled girls made by 4chan members” sounding wrong in so many ways.

  17. Acosta says:

    I really enjoyed Katawa Shoujo. Putting aside the debate about interactivity and so, I found it really tasteful and well developed (Lilly route here), was quite impressed by it.

    Katawa Crash is really fun.

  18. faelnor says:

    I REALLY WANT TO BE A JAPANESE

  19. MadTinkerer says:

    CREEPERS! I… wasn’t just imagining them, right? I haven’t managed to collide with one yet.

  20. Foosnark says:

    I just passed 56,000m and I have to go to work.

  21. Kronic says:

    Gods no, Nanaca Crash killed enough hours of my time as was, even without counting the fact it caused me to play Cross Channel. >.>

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