From the creators of the highly acclaimed "Juniper's Knot" comes "Dysfunctional Systems: Learning to Manage Chaos". Dysfunctional Systems is a visual novel series featuring Winter Harrison, a student mediator from a utopian world. What is a mediator? A mediator is a person who travels between chaotic worlds, attempting to resolve the issues plaguing them. The first entry in the series follows her second mediation, where she shadows the experienced and aloof mediator: Cyrus Addington. "Dysfunctional Systems: Learning to Manage Chaos" features two distinct endings, unlockable bonus art, an animated opening video, and a jukebox of in-game music.
I personally would give this a 10/10 but since this is my first review I am not allowed....and I guess this is only the first episode after all.
I thought the storyline was really in depth and engaging, and it made me very emotional. I have yet to get the second ending, and I look foward to seeing where the other ending takes me.
The art is breathtakingly beutiful and the characters are all beutifully desgined. The music is just as amazing. The music is simple yet effective, and hits your emotions just as powerfully as the story.
Overall great in everyway possible. My only complaint was that it was a little bit short, and there are many questions unanswered. Yet this is only the first episode after all and just an introduction of what is to come. I will definitely be getting the next episode. I highly reccomend this visual novel to anyone who is a fan of Visual Novels or just wants a breathtaking and emotional story to read.
One of the things that impressed me about this first episode is the sheer amount of subtle depth that is used to paint a broad picture of not only the cast but the world around them. Chief among them is the main character Winter who, in the beginning, strikes you as an atypical tween (I hate that term but it applies). She's not prepared, not very focused and far outside of her element interfering in the affairs of other worlds. As the game continues, you get a sense of who she actually is underneath her more bookish tone and by the final act, after dealing with a truly cataclysmic event, I found it very hard not to like her. That says a great deal about not only her overall character but how their world views other worlds...more on that in a second. Considering just how broken she is when Episode 1 wraps up, there is a lot of room to grow in the next four episodes and they have a great deal to build on.
Dysfunctional Systems is freakin' gorgeous. Doomfest's artwork delivers once again with distinct characters and somber backgrounds often blending into the best water color Event CGs you may see this year. Along with the great artwork is a fantastic soundtrack by CombatPlayer that revels in the games science fiction roots. It's mostly atmospheric techno and synthetic mixes with a few poignant piano pieces to even out the mix. Everything punctuates the story when it needs to and it fits into my usual standard for EVN soundtracks: it sounds great on its own. When I downloaded DS, I was able to download the entire soundtrack for free and hopefully it'll become something of a standard in the coming weeks and months for other developers (HINT HINT).
Dysfunctional Systems Episode 1: Learning to Manage Chaos isn't a perfect game, but even with its flaws it is a stunning achievement.
This visual novel has a compelling basic idea. The ui is smooth and clean. The art is good. The music is good. The sound effects could be better. I just wish it wasn't so damn SHORT!
When I purchased this game I was expecting maybe 4-5 hours of story until I got to the end, since that's the average time I read through most VNs. Instead it lasted about one and a half. I played it again, to see if I missed something and got the Bad Ending. I didn't.
I did not realize that as an episodic VN, it would be significantly shorter than others. Perhaps the price should have tipped me off. I slightly regert buying this VN, now.
I also would have appreciated more background information, on the worlds, on the science, on their jump devices. But that's a different grumbling than my main issue- This VN's surprisingly short length!
And what's more, the first choice is not until almost halfway through this 'episode'. But despite my brevity-angst, it's a solid production. ALMOST worth the $5. I'll probably buy the next one, at least now I know what to expect. I just hope it's a little longer.
And I really want that codex to be full. To. Bursting.
I absolutely loved this VN, only thing wrong with it was that it was too short. The art and music are very nice and the story is amazing as well as the world/lore. The possibilities of the Dysfunctional Systems universe are literally endless. Can't wait until they come out with episodes two and three!
10/10, I've played through multiple times and would definitely recommend this VN.
This was hands down the VN experience to get me into VNs.
Gorgeous art, a great and fitting soundtrack, a really gripping story, all masterfully thrown together into what I consider my favorite VN.
All in all it was a great experience, and I highly recommend it.
I just hope we wont have to wait too long to see a continuation of it!