Having checked out the Vita and Steam versions of the title, we were recently given the chance to experience Corpse Party on the Nintendo 3DS.
The story is rather simple. A group of students have decided to perform a send off to a classmate who is moving away. This send off is through a Sachiko Ever After charm. An earthquake occurs during this charm and winds up transporting everybody into an alternate dimension, split up into different locations within Heavenly Host Elementary School.
Now you need to find your friends and escape this alternate version of Heavenly Host.
You will need to explore Heavenly Host Elementary, which is full of traps, corpses, and even spirits of students previously trapped there. It blends together visual novel story-telling and adventure exploration gameplay extremely well, The blend makes it extremely fun to play as you explore the creepy environment of Heavenly Host, though some would argue that it would be better suited as a pure visual novel, citing that many of the so-called puzzles are simply taking one key to another.
That said, personally, despite the linearity of the title, I personally believe it is better suited as the mixture that the developers have chosen to employ. The act of wandering around and experiencing decisions with true consequences enhances the atmosphere greatly. If you mess up during your exploration, you may see your avatar experience the initial pain of their death for all eternity, unable to ever find comfort in the afterlife. The alternate chapter endings are based on authentic, movement-based reactions to specific situations, with the 3DS version boasting new endings and extra chapters to enjoy.
Graphics and sound
The title looks fresh out of RPG Maker, however it is still impressive graphically. It has, as noted, had several iterations now, with each featuring both visual and quality improvements. As such, the 3DS version is, honestly, the most impressive version thus far, and utilizes the 3DS’ twin screens to minimize clutter quite efficiently. Unfortunately, most of the game lacks 3D support, although the CG does support it.
In terms of audio, it is also extremely impressive with both voice acting and general audio. For example, there is a scene in the opening area that features flies around a corpse. The audio here truly makes you feel as if you are right next to it. Unfortunately, the audio output on the 3DS is quite low, so if you are playing it in a noisy location it can be hard to fully enjoy.
Though it is somewhat depressing that the chapter exclusive to the PC version was not added (thus making the 3DS version the definitive version), Corpse Party is still well worth your time if you enjoy visual novels, exploration games, horror games, or all three.
Final Score: 4.5/5