I’m sure every anime fan has pondered the idea of visiting Japan sometime during their lives, but things like time and money usually hold them back. Well, the good news is that now you can see what Japan has to offer for less than $15 and on your own time. Whether you want to stroll down the streets of the anime mecca of Akihabara, visit the temples and palaces of Kyoto, or go up the Tokyo Tower for a breathtaking view of the city, that can all be done at the press of a button.
Thanks to game maker Overdrive and their game Go! Go! Nippon! -My First Trip to Japan-, you can now experience the sights and sounds of Japan from your computer. The title is the first visual novel to be targeted at audiences outside of Japan.
While visual novels largely consist of erotic dating simulators, Go! Go! Nippon! is free of any 18+ material, but it does contain some dating simulator elements. You play the role of a foreigner who decides to visit a couple of Japanese friends he has made online for a week. After arriving in Japan, you discover that these friends are actually two cute sisters and you’ll be staying with them for the next week. What’s more, their parents coincidently happen to be out of town for 2 weeks, leaving the house to just the three of you. If that doesn’t sound like a dating simulator, I don’t know what does.
Besides the whole living with two cute girls aspect, the game is promoted as an educational resource for anyone interested in Japan or planning to visit Japan. Right from the beginning, the game walks you through the basics of visiting Japan like renting a cellphone at the airport and getting a SUICA card. As you tour Japan, the two sisters will describe the history and significance of the places that you visit. Although you would think the game covers most areas of Japan, it is actually limited to the major tourist areas in Tokyo and Kyoto. Perhaps not the best guide to places to visit in Japan, but it’s certainly a nice way of introducing someone to the country.
The game is published in English by MangaGamer and is available for purchase on their website for €9.95 (< $15).