Phenomeno is one of those game that I would have given a ten… IF it didn’t descend into objectification of the characters. Really there’s no need for it other than to tell me the main character is a misogynist to where the only thing he sees first and that matters on a woman is her breasts, followed by her looks. Especially the Krishna character that gets a dose fetish going on. Creepy rapist fetish too. It really took me out of the mood that was set up.
Otherwise the sounds effects and mood for this horror novel are really done well and not overdone to the point of sillyness. Another annoying fact is the translators changed the font from a Mincho font to more of a Gothic font which also kills some of the atmosphere.
The story is about a student who wants a cheap house so of course he buys the most out of the way, haunted looking house ever ‘the house that grants wishes’. Promptly the house starts creaking and making noise and numbers start appearing which leads him to want to get the house investigated. Enter Yoishi, Karasu and Krishna. Who if the story treated them as human would make the mood even more creepy.
Characters: All the characters are sexualized in some way to the point that the story suffers for it and you are wondering if they are even really needed. Yoishi is the “Manic Pixie Dream Girl”, Karasu is the skatily clad, large breasted beer drinker, and Krishna is the lolicon fetish with the distended and grotesque looking breasts. Seriously the artist needs to learn anatomy. None of these chracter really feel believable because of all that and in the end your hoping the main character dies a horrible death.
Music & Sound: The music and sound fit really well and set a good mood for the whole game, it it wasn’t being destroyed by the horrible character designs.
Overall: If you really can’t stand characters to be given the misogyny snapshot, then give this one a pass. There a few other horror games out there that will probably set the same mood. Otherwise just try and ignore the silly designs and try to stay in the mood of the game.