ReviewsReview: Athanasy

Review: Athanasy

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Films, books, and games set in a dystopian future are nothing new. Consequently, the plot, characters, and artwork can feel tired and well-trodden. Usually, this undermines the experience while impacting the originality of the story. Luckily, however, Athanasy counteracts this with a unique tale, fantastic character development, and wonderful art style.

Developed by Wirion and published by 7DOTS and Phoenix_co, this is a dark and sordid visual novel. Luckily, its short story is filled with interesting choices that alter the course of the game. You may choose to be a hero, a loner, a coward, and more. Whatever you decide, you will experience nothing but doom and gloom. Subsequently, its 1984 inspired dystopia is uncomfortable and a little creepy.

Athanasy is full of dark and grim imagery.
Dark and sinister imagery.

Athanasy has no light at the end of the tunnel.

Unlike its peers, there isn’t a positive ending. Instead, you are treated to different levels of sombre disappointment. Loneliness and failure occur no matter your choices, and oddly, this was great. This sorrowful style works brilliantly with the theme, even if it was a tad depressing at times. Now, I don’t mind a bad or horrific ending, as it keeps you on your toes. However, to have little to fight for was a step too far. I mean, if the future is this depressing, I’m not sure I want to live long enough to get there!

You control Josiah Kaviani, a bright and brilliant mathematician and statistician. He has the world at his feet and he can do whatever he wishes. Yet, he isn’t happy. His mind is considered perfect, but he is lonely and tired of his worthless existence. Sadly, though, this desire to meet someone is his downfall. As he begins his journey, he experiences gory sights and meets nightmarish monsters. His perfect, albeit shallow, existence, is about to be turned upside down and maybe he shouldn’t have pried into matters that were above his pay grade.

Athanasy has many interesting and plot altering characters.
Why would you turn down beer?

Excellent characters and a well-paced plot.

Visual novels usually drift off into the realms of over-sexualised Manga/Anime nonsense. Now, I know this market is strong, but it is an instant turnoff. On the other hand, I prefer more depth and grit to my stories. Luckily, Athanasy delivers this on so many levels, because of its many endings and its well-written dialogue. What’s more, the characters are interesting; the relationships have meaning, and the environments are common and feel familiar.

In short, the action resonates with “ordinary” people. However, I understand that the bleak nature of the plot is far from realistic, but the rest of the elements are uncomfortably close to home. Alongside this, you experience a well-paced plot that comprises many twists and turns. Therefore, your choices impact the protagonist and the surrounding world. This, in turn, funnels the story to each of the grim finales. With many endings available, I was glad that each playthrough lasted no longer than 2 hours. This short playtime ensures that you return for more to tackle each unnerving subplot.

Athanasy is grim but captivating.

I adored the writing, characters, and many twists and turns. Yet, it was the graphics and audio that captivated me! I’ve read countless visual novels and graphically, this stands out amongst its peers. Its use of earthy tones and simple animation allows you to focus on the well-structured text. Furthermore, the backdrops are varied, and this adds depth to the sombre plot. You’ll adore the portraits of the protagonists, the intriguing world, and the grim and eerie setting.

This is helped further by the atmospheric music, as the heavy soundtrack is dark, unnerving, and uncomfortable to listen to. Therefore, the slow but well-paced songs complement the writing style throughout. You’ll grimace as the hero’s world crumbles and the sinister music plays. With few positive moments, there is rarely a break in the sombre tones. However, this mattered not, as it enhanced the suspenseful nature of the story.

Evil creatures lurk everywhere.
What the hell is that thing?

Standard visual novel controls.

Expectedly, Athanasy is simple to play. With a skip function, and easy to master controls, you’ll play this with ease. Like its peers, this was great, as it allows you to focus on the plot and little else.

Thanks to the large array of endings and short playtime, this has longevity and replay value. If you love a sombre and dark story, this will keep you going for hours. What’s more, the interesting character development and many subplots ensure that it stays interesting throughout.

Athanasy is a cracking visual novel.

I love a great book and Athanasy is certainly a fantastic read. If you are a fan of sci-fi and 1984-inspired titles, this will be right up your street. Its characters are great, the writing is phenomenal and well-timed, and its artistry is second to none. Consequently, I recommend you to buy it here! Life is eerie, uncomfortable, and lonely. However, why rock the boat? 

SUMMARY

Athanasy is dark, creepy, and sinister. Its dystopian world is unfair, cruel, and depressing. However, you won't be able to put it down. With incredible graphics, interesting characters, and atmospheric audio, this is a great sci-fi read.


+ Dark and creepy imagery.
+ Atmospheric audio.
+ A well-written story with multiple endings.
+ An array of characters to interact with.

- It may be too grim for some.

(Price: £7.19 Release date: 13/04/2022)


(Reviewed on PC using Steam. Only available on PC.)


Daniel Waite
Daniel Waite
My gaming career started on an Amiga and spans many consoles! Currently, I game using an MSI laptop and Xbox Series X. A fan of every genre, I love to give anything a go. Former editor and reviewer for www.bonusstage.co.uk, I'm loving my new home here at Movies Games and Tech. I can be contacted for gaming reviews on the following email: Daniel@moviesgamesandtech.com

3 COMMENTS

  1. I think that if you associate over-sexualisation with lack of depth, you lack experience with the medium. The Japanese light novel was born as a form of pornography, and to this day, some of the deepest, most powerful narratives are works filled with (often shoehorned-in) sex scenes of dubious quality. You do yourself a disservice if you allow them to turn you off the remaining 90% of a story, especially with the great modern availability of all-ages versions.

    • Hi,

      I believe there has been a misunderstanding here. My comment simply refers to the moment that over-sexulised images are used for no reasons. I find this to be unnecessary and shallow. I have read a considerable amount from the genre and I’ve enjoyed an array of themes and styles. Every piece of artistry has its place when used correctly and in the right context.

      Thanks for taking the time to read my thoughts and making a comment. Out of interest, what would you recommend as a well-written Manga/Anime novel?

      Dan

      • Honestly, I just wish reviewer would drop this subject. It feels silly, performative to see it repeated over and over.

        Don’t get me wrong, I share the same opinions, but it’s absurd to see that this one fact in the entire market grabs more attention than the enormous quality some VNs deliver.

        Yeah, it’s plenty of shitty eroges, but there is also stuff like World End Economica, The House in Fata Morgana or even things like VA11-HALLA coming from South America.

        In this day and age, VNs are more than eroges aimed at the old stereotyped japanese otaku. If people outside of the medium refuse to see this, it’s their issue, se can avoid bringing It up over and over.

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Review: Athanasy<p class="has-text-align-justify" style="font-size:14px"><em>Athanasy</em> is dark, creepy, and sinister. Its dystopian world is unfair, cruel, and depressing. However, you won't be able to put it down. With incredible graphics, interesting characters, and atmospheric audio, this is a great sci-fi read. </p><br/> + Dark and creepy imagery. <br/> + Atmospheric audio. <br/> + A well-written story with multiple endings. <br/> + An array of characters to interact with. <br/> <br/> - It may be too grim for some. <br/> <br/> <p class="has-text-align-center" style="font-size:10px">(<b>Price:</b> £7.19 <b>Release date:</b> 13/04/2022) </p><br/> <p class="has-text-align-center" style="font-size:10px">(Reviewed on PC using Steam. Only available on PC.) </p><br/>