Review by TheSAMMIES

Reviewed: 07/30/13 | Updated: 08/19/13

Love and protect your sister.

Warning! Kana Little Sister is an adult video game that features characters having sex with each other. One of the possible situations is incestuous too, which is going to offend some people. If you are too young to play adult video games or find incest to be a horrible abomination that only sub human scum are even capable of committing, then you should probably skip this game.

Kana Little Sister is a visual novel where you play as Taka, a man with a little sister who has kidney problems. The game details his life with his sister and how their relationship grew. Yes, this game has some incest in it, but considering that D. O. made more than one game series that revolves around how many tentacles one could fit in a female orifice, this is pretty tame. The whole game handles everything well. From Kana’s sickness, to the unforgettable supporting cast, to the incest, to the endings, all of it is done well.

Just to be very clear, this is not an ordinary hentai game. It’s not a game you play because you want to see a happy little story about two people who love each other and screw. This is a nakige, a sub-genre of video games that are all about trying to get a strong and emotional response from the player. It tries to get you to really connect with the characters and make you to feel something. You might get angry. You might cry. You might smile and feel hope. There are a lot of ways you can go through this game. If you can go through Kana with apathy and feel absolutely nothing after playing this game, then you simply don’t know how to play this kind of game.

Story- Taka feels that he must protect his perpetually ill sister, Kana. She has a kidney problem that’s been affecting her life for a long time. The doctors said she should have died back when she was a small child, but she survived and has grown a lot. As Taka and Kana grow from childhood to adulthood, their relationship grows too, to the point where they feel sexually attracted to each other. Still, Taka feels like he must protect his sister, no matter what.

Kana Little Sister’s supporting cast is amazing too. Miki is Kana’s nurse, who the family had known for years. She’s usually cheerful and is always ready to help Taka and Kana with any problems. Sumako is Taka’s aunt, who was afflicted with breast cancer. She is very wise and plays a big role in some of the paths. There’s also Yumi and Yuta, the two “villains” of the story. Yumi is an academic overachiever that has had a creepy stalker crush on Taka since elementary school and she holds onto it well into college. Yuta is a man that wants Kana all to himself, but not because he loves her, but because he just wants someone weak and vulnerable to protect. They are both cruel and manipulative people that will stop at nothing to get what they want.

Presentation- Most of Kana’s visuals are either CG or sprites. Character sprites don’t move, but they are drawn well. CG appears often and is unlocked in a gallery as you play through the game. There's a lot of it. You'll probably have to play the game three or four times to get all of it, which should be enough motivation to get all of the endings.

Kana Little Sister has no voice acting. It’s also in Japanese, so even if it did, most people reading this probably wouldn’t understand it anyway, so it’s no great loss. The good news about the sound is that the music is great. Songs portray a wide variety of emotions and there’s a pretty good variety of them too. The game has a special sound test mode that lets you listen to any song you want. One song will notably play in one scene at a very inappropriate time. The song is happy, like it's about the most wonderful thing you could possibly imagine, but it's played during a dark moment for Taka. This might have been intentional due to the irony. It’s a memorable soundtrack and some of the music, coupled with the powerful story, might end up sticking with you long after the game is over.

Gameplay- The goal of the game is to help Taka make the right choices. Whenever he has a moment of indecision, you get to pick what choice he makes. Different choices lead up to one of six different endings. Not every ending is going to be good. In fact, a couple of them are absolutely heartbreaking. You want to try to work toward the better endings because if you get a bad one, the game will really try to make you feel like crap. If you manage to get a good ending however, you might end up crying. Some of them are absolutely beautiful and really showcase how good the writing can be. Also, just because the game says that one ending is the “true” ending doesn’t make it the best one. Which one is the best is up to you.

The game likes to throw bizarre scenarios at you to try to throw you off. Just keep in mind what you think would happen if you do something. Think of the long term effects of everything, even the little stuff like whether you get Kana a book, a pokemon toy, or an erotic table lamp for her birthday. Every single choice matters, even if it doesn’t appear that way on the surface.

Also remember that Taka is an actual character. He isn’t a faceless player cipher like other hentai protagonists. His face may be cropped out of most CG, but he does show it from time to time. He’s an actual character with very real hopes, dreams, and fears, not just a vessel for players to project themselves into. It’s part of what makes him such a good character. The story really would not be the same without him and you really should try to make the right choices. The only real way to know if you did the right thing is to think to yourself: Is Kana happy? Did I protect her?

Cool Fact- At the arcade, Taka has the option of playing a strip mahjong game. Sadly, you can’t actually play it, only read a description of Taka playing it.

Also Try- Kana Little Sister got a windows version that’s in English. It got the seldom used A rating from ESRB, so if you’re going to play an A rated game, that’s a great one. There’s also a Japan only PSP version of this game that makes some changes in the art, removes all the sex scenes, adds a few new scenes, and censors most of the nudity. It’s a little butchered, but it’s still a great way to play this game. Oh, and if you want a good suggestion for a game that’s also about sick and dying characters, try the first Narcissu game.

Rating: 8

Product Release: Kana Little Sister (JP, 06/15/01)

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