This wholesome yet heartbreaking tale from PQube follows the story of Haruto Soraki. A high school student who is on a journey to recount the last seven years of memories he lost. With nothing but a gentle reminder and a promise he made, his journey feels hopeless. But upon visiting certain places and encountering familiar faces, it all begins to come flooding back. But it’s not an easy journey, uncovering the past of the town you’re visiting.
Let’s begin at the beginning
7 Years From Now was originally released in 2017 for both Apple and Android. But in Summer 2021, it came to Nintendo Switch with it’s pixelated charm. Upon first playing it, it definitely feels like a mobile game – but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s got a certain charm to it, which I think is reflected through walk cycles (or lack thereof) and general character interactions. I found myself to quickly adapt to how the game functions and the controls were very easy to pick up.
Essentially this title involves a lot of reading. There isn’t much to do besides follow simple instructions given to you by other characters and engage with what they’re saying. There’s no mighty quests to embark on, no epic battles to engage in. It’s a very simple concept of talking to every single person you meet in order to gain an understanding of who you are. And how you got here.
Take it one day at a time
The story is divided into chapters, which are bitesize chunks so it’s fairly easy to pick up and complete a few before putting it back down. The game as a whole has over 40 chapters so you aren’t going to blitz through it either. With such a story heavy idea, it would be a shame to condense it into a few large sections. I really enjoyed the chapter element of the game as I felt like it was way easier to track my progress. It also makes it easier to digest the content you’ve just engaged with. As I have already mentioned, this game is extremely text heavy so prepare yourself for that. The topics covered can also get quite heavy so regular breaks are needed to just relieve the weight.
You’re given a timeframe right at the beginning of the game of five days. You have five days to explore your area and recount all the memories you possibly can. It feels as though these days fly by when you begin, but I assure you nothing is what it seems. It’s a perfect example of not taking what you have for granted. Which is a particularly important lesson to learn. You seek help from those around you, and rely on honesty and truth to progress. I found 7 Years From Now to rely a lot on important life lessons which embedded themselves neatly into the content of this title.
As a whole, 7 Years From Now is an oddly charming yet extremely melancholic journey. When you think you’ve got somewhere and finally recapped a memory, you take two steps back and are back to square one. It’s an honest account of our protagonist, Haruto, and his thoughts and feelings when trying to understand how he got in this position. It’s frustrating, grating, lacklustre, but it’s also charming and heartwarming. You never know what to expect next, which is what makes it an engaging game.