Difficult to judge a game like Short Peace… because it isn’t one! Composed with 4 anime and a little game made by no one else than Suda 51. After finishing the PS3 Blu-ray, I’m kinda crestfallen.
Rather than a game wih animated sequences, I see Ranko Tsukigime Longest Day (it’s the name of the game) more like an anime with gameplay parts. The biggest point of the game is its bizarre atmosphere, its weird design and its continuous gags. Suda let his imagination run wild and gave birth to a psychedelic experience that rivals late Satoshi Kon’s movies. The story as about Ranko, a not-so-ordinary high school girl leaving at night equipped with a violin in the purpose of killing her own father. Here, I just described you th part of the story that can actually be expressed with words, because the rest is absolutely absurd in the mix of unexpected and unthinkable things that happen.
Artistically speaking, it remains very interesting. Cut-scenes vary between different styles (classical anime, watercolor, comic, manga) in incredible and spicy events. The game itself is kinda stylish with its paint effects, old-school shooting and a ludicrous final battle in 8-bit. The gameplay is pretty much limited though : it’s merely about racing through the few stages as fast as possible while striking monsters with the right timing, so as to shake off the dark forces behind you. The whole thing lasts about 3 hours and trophies aren’t exactly exciting.
I expected better of the various anime. They’re certainly worthwhile from a stylistic point of view, but the stories lack substance. The first three are tales related to the Japanese folklore with Youkais and Onis, while the fourth is an SF anime that takes place in an alternative future after world’s end. All are definitely too short and the SF one, by far the most interesting, should have really been developed a lot more to present its background and expand its universe. The action and the atmosphere are really cool and it has the potential to be a major SF reference a bit like Pale Cocoon (which was short too but also more meaningful).
Whatever you may think about those (I’m not here to decide which kind of anime is good or not), one thing is sure : a 2-hour long anime being around 20€ and Ranko Tsukigime looking like a 8-10€ downloadable game, the 50€ that BandaiNamco asks you for this disc are way too much.