Memories Off is a Japanese visual novel developed by KID originally released in Japan on September 30, 1999 for the PlayStation, and was later released for the PC, Dreamcast, PlayStation 2, and the PlayStation Portable. Subsequent versions incorporated new content not found in the original version, such as a second part of the story, Memories Off: Pure, originally released as a separate game for the Neo Geo Pocket Color on April 27, 2000. The gameplay in Memories Off follows a linear plot line, which offers pre-determined scenarios and courses of interaction, and focuses on the appeal of the six female main characters.
Memories Off has made several transitions to other media. A manga anthology was published in August 2000 by Enterbrain. It was followed by an original video animation series produced by E&G Films released on three DVDs and VHSs between November 11, 2001 and March 8, 2002. Three novels and a drama CD were also produced.
The gameplay in Memories Off requires little player interaction as much time is spent on reading the text that appears on the lower portion of the screen, representing either dialogue between characters, or the inner thoughts of the protagonist. Every so often, the player will come to a "decision point", where he or she is given the chance to choose from multiple options. The time between these points is variable and can occur anywhere from a minute to much longer. Gameplay pauses at these points and depending on which choice the player makes, the plot will progress in a specific direction. There are five main plot lines that the player will have the chance to experience, one for each of the heroines in the story except Ayaka. To view all five plot lines, the player will have to replay the game multiple times and make different decisions to progress the plot in an alternate direction.
In the versions subsequent to the original PC release, a second scenario called Pure is made available after the scenarios for the heroines, 1st Story, are completed. Pure covers the story set three years prior to the main portion of the game and revolves around Tomoya, Ayaka and Yue when they are still attending middle school. A third scenario called After Story is available immediately upon starting a new game in the PSP version. After Story is a continuation of the first portion of the game. Unlike the other scenarios, After Story is not accompanied by voice acting, character sprites and choices, allowing one to enjoy the story without any interaction.
The story of Memories Off revolves around the male protagonist Tomoya Mikami, a cynical seventeen year-old student whose role the player assumes, and his interactions with his schoolmates during his second year attending the Sumisora Academy, in which the main part of the story takes place. Tomoya meets Yue Imasaka, a childhood friend one day on a train en route to school. Yue is a lively and innocent, but clumsy girl. She is the main heroine of the story, and has a crush on Tomoya, but decided not to pursue him early on. Tomoya later also meets Kaoru Otowa, another heroine. Kaoru is a girl who transfers into Tomoya's class near the beginning of the story. She maintains a cheerful personality and articulate social skills, and excels in language subjects.
Tomoya later also encounters Shion Futami , Memories Off's third heroine. Shion is a girl who transferred into Tomoya's class in the past semester. She has a calm personality, and prefers to be isolated. Like Kaoru, Shion excels in language, and shows an interest in literature to the extent where she became a librarian. He also meets Koyomi Kirishima, another heroine. Koyomi is actually a university student, but commutes to the school in order to substitute her mother as the cashier for the school for a week. She is kind and caring, but is also clumsy when collecting payments. She has two pet hamsters named Ggakdugi and Namul. Tomoya later also meets Minamo Ibuki , Memories Off's fifth heroine and an underclassman. Minamo has a lively personality, and also holds an interest in art. Due to her weak health, she has to constantly commute to hospitals.
Tomoya is constantly reminded of his previous romantic interest Ayaka Hizuki, the main focus of the Pure story segment, as he continues his interactions with his many schoolmates. Ayaka is Tomoya and Yue's childhood friend and is Minamo's cousin. She maintains a kind and well-mannered, but timid personality. She passes away after being involved in a traffic accident towards the end of the Pure segment to Tomoya's dismay, leading him to constantly struggle to overcome with her death, and acts callously towards others.
Multiple scenarios and girls will love to meet and play style endings. The protagonist is a 17-year-old high school sophomore with a painful past. Continuously appeared in front of the hero the heroine, who would enjoy the romance and what is all up to you. Through contact with various girls, what a hero really regain feeling in my heart!
- First person perspective.
- 2D graphics
- Cartoon graphics
- High School, Dating & Anime themes.