YU-NO: A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bound of this World
|YU-NO: A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bound of this World|
Sega Saturn cover
|Developer(s)||ELF Corporation (original)|
|Artist(s)||Yasuchika Nagaoka (original)|
Ryō Nagi (remake)
Kazuhiro Kanae (original)
Keishi Yonao (remake)
NEC PC-9801, Sega Saturn, Microsoft Windows
PlayStation Vita, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Microsoft Windows
|Genre(s)||Visual novel, adventure|
YU-NO: A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bound of this World[a] is an adult visual novel adventure game developed and published by ELF Corporation. It was originally released in 1996 for the PC-98 Japanese home computer and later ported to the Sega Saturn and Microsoft Windows platforms without the sexual content of the original version. The story follows the protagonist travelling between parallel worlds to solve the mystery of his parents' disappearance. Although parallel worlds are a familiar concept in science fiction, the game uses concepts from physics, mathematics, philosophy, history and religion to construct a unique fictional universe. The "Auto Diverge Mapping System" (A.D.M.S.) that displays the branching parallel worlds and storylines as a tree helps the player navigate the game world.
YU-NO was written and produced by Hiroyuki Kanno, and its FM-synth music soundtrack was composed by Ryu Umemoto, Ryu Takami and Kazuhiro Kanae, who had previously worked on C's Ware titles such as Eve Burst Error (1995). YU-NO was well-received, and it was influential in Japan, where it influenced numerous visual novels, manga and anime works.
In 2017, 5pb. developed and published a remake of the game for the PlayStation Vita and PlayStation 4. Spike Chunsoft plans to release this version for PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Windows in 2019. The game has also been adapted into a four-part hentai original video animation, a manga and novels, and a TV anime series by Feel that premiered in April 2019. The TV anime series is licensed in North America by Funimation.
- 1 Title
- 2 Gameplay
- 3 Characters
- 4 Development
- 5 Releases
- 6 Adaptations
- 7 Reception
- 8 Legacy
- 9 Notes
- 10 References
- 11 External links
The bound of this world (この世の果て kono yo no hate) referred to in the title is the location the protagonist reaches at the conclusion of the game. Yu-no is the name of a girl central to the story. The creators said "YU-NO", which comes last word in the Japanese title, is meant to be a subtitle. The English version of the title that is used in some artwork is stylized as "YU-NO: A girl who chants love at the bound of this world.", with a period.
The PC-98 and Sega Saturn versions of the game are slightly different. Unless otherwise noted, the following information describes the PC-98 version.
Players travel between parallel worlds using a reflector device that uses stones to mark positions as returning locations so they can retrace their steps and enter an alternative universe. The game implements an original system called Automatic Diverge Mapping System (A.D.M.S.) that at any time in the game displays a screen showing the direction in which the player was heading along the branching plot lines. Similar systems have later been used in the 2010 role-playing video game Radiant Historia  and the PSP version of Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together
When a branch in the storyline nears, an indicator on the game's reflector device blinks. When the players' choice advances the storyline, their routes are recorded in the "divergence map" and the device plays a sound. The player is tasked with collecting eight jewels that are the power source of the reflector device; the divergence map shows the locations of all jewels within the storylines even before the player has reached them. In this way, A.D.M.S. is used to search through the parallel worlds. The divergence map displays time from left to right and concurrent parallel worlds are shown vertically.
Another noteworthy feature is the "jewel save". The jewels that power the reflector device can be clicked to place a mark on the divergence map, which consumes the jewel. The divergence map can later be opened and players can return to the mark instantly, regaining the jewel. If a jewel save is made before a story branch point, players can explore one scenario then quickly return and explore an alternative. This feature is akin to saving or loading the game. Key items can be carried from one world to another through the jewel save.
Prologue and epilogue
Sections at the beginning and end of the game have a more traditional visual-novel-style gameplay, in which players choose commands like "Look" or "Speak" from a menu. There are no branching paths in these sections and it is not possible to use the reflector device there.
|Character||Description||1997 Sega Saturn||1998 OVA||2017 remake||2019 anime (Japanese)||2019 anime (English)|
|Takuya Arima (有馬 たくや)||The protagonist of the game. A third-year student at Sakaimachi Academy whose mother Keiko apparently died when he was young. He often dreams of his mother. Two months before the start of the game, his father was killed in a rockfall.||Nobuyuki Hiyama||Susumu Chiba||Yū Hayashi||Eric Vale, Emi Lo (baby)|
|Yu-no (ユーノ)||A mysterious girl Takuya encounters.||Kimiko Koyama||Ari Ozawa||Sarah Wiedenheft|
|Kanna Hatano (波多乃 神奈)||A new transfer student||Yuka Imai||Ayaha Takazuka||Maaya Uchida||Kristen McGuire|
|Mio Shimazu (島津 澪)||A schoolmate, and head of the historical research club with an interest in the paranormal||Yumi Tōma||Yui Takama||Rie Kugimiya||Megan Shipman|
|Mitsuki Ichijō (一条 美月)||A teacher||Rei Sakuma||Kaori Okuda||Saori Ōnishi||Kylie Stewart|
|Eriko Takeda (武田 絵里子)||A school doctor.||Aya Hisakawa||Mie Sonozaki||Yū Kobayashi||Morgan Garrett|
|Kaori Asakura (朝倉 香織)||TV reporter investigating Geotech||Michiko Neya||Mari Adachi||Rena Maeda||Kara Edwards|
|Ayumi Arima (有馬 亜由美)||Takuya's stepmother, project manager at Geotech.||Kikuko Inoue||Ai Uchikawa||Kaori Nazuka||Dawn M. Bennett|
|Kozo Ryuzoji (龍蔵寺 幸三)||Kodai's friend and colleague.||Akio Ōtsuka||Taiten Kusunoki||David Wald|
|Ume Ryuzoji (龍蔵寺 梅)||Kozo's mother.||Reiko Suzuki||Maki Izawa|
|Masakatsu Yuki (結城 正勝)||Takuya's friend, who has a crush on Shimazu.||Tetsuya Iwanaga||Yūki Fujiwara||Justin Briner|
|Hideo Toyotomi (豊富 秀夫)||A Geotech manager under Ayumi.||Shinichiro Miki||Shinichiro Miki (uncredited)||Takuya Eguchi||Kyle Igneczi|
|Amanda (アマンダ)||Ailia's younger sister.||Yūko Mita||Marina Inoue|
|Ailia (アイリア)||Amanda's elder sister.||Masako Katsuki||Kyoko Sakai|
|Kodai Arima (有馬 広大)||Takuya's father.||Fumihiko Tachiki||Keiji Fujiwara||Fumihiko Tachiki||Barry Yandell|
|Keiko Arima (有馬 恵子)||Takuya's mother.||Chizuko Hoshino||Aya Endō||Marissa Lenti|
|Atsushi Hojo (北条 篤)||A “tough guy”.||Takeshi Aono||Yōji Ueda|
|Marina (真理奈)||A security guard.||Chinami Nishimura||Ayano Yamamoto|
|Mayor Shimazu (島津市長)||Mio's father.||Eiji Yanagisawa||Masahiro Yoshida||Takehiro Hasu|
|Sayless (セーレス)||Yu-no's mother.||Miki Takahashi||Haruhi Terada||Asami Sanada|
|Sarah (サラ)||Yumi Takada||Mari Doi|
|Bazuk (バズク)||Tessho Genda||Biichi Satō|
|Kunkun (クンクン)||Tomoko Kawakami||Yumibō Tai|
|Yurika Imagawa (今川 由利香)||A professor.|
Having made the earlier successful adventure games DESIRE (1994) and EVE Burst Error (1995) at C's Ware, Hiroyuki Kanno and Ryu Umemoto were hired by ELF to create a game with a high budget available. The story Kanno pitched he had developed since his teens, and it was allowed to be fully realized by the budget. As with their earlier projects, Kanno and Umemoto collaborated closely. Each vital plot point was discussed in detail to achieve synergy between story and music, with musical pieces representing the characters' moods and emotions rather than characters or locations. Umemoto, a mathematics prodigy since an early age and a practitioner of Zen Buddhism, applied symbolic elements of his religion to his compositions via mathematical patterns. A new gameplay system called A.D.M.S. (Auto Diverge Mapping System) was made for the game.
YU-NO was released as an adult game on December 26, 1996, for the NEC PC-9801; it was the last MS-DOS game developed by ELF. The price at the time was 9800 yen. Both floppy disk and CD-ROM versions were released; the CD-ROM edition contained arrangements of the music but was otherwise identical to the floppy edition.
YU-NO was released on the Sega Saturn console on December 4, 1997 with a recommended minimum age of 18. The price was 7800 yen, or 9800 yen bundled with a mouse. Several illustrations underneath the CD tray can only be seen after opening the game. A disk containing extra content that was later mailed out with the PC-98 version was integrated into this version. As in the Windows version, some incest references have been removed. Graphics were repainted to use more colors, animation sequences were added, the music was rearranged, character voices were added, two jewels were added (total of 10) and explicit sex scenes were removed.
The PC-98 version of the game was ported to Microsoft Windows as part of the "ELF Classics" range and released on December 22, 2000. The graphics and music are equivalent to the PC-98 version but the sexual content was removed.
An English-language fan-made translation patch for the Windows version was released in September 2011 by TLWiki. As well as the translation, it provides re-inserted voices from the Sega Saturn version, explicit sex scenes, Ryu Umemoto's original FM score and Sega Saturn CGs. Hardcore Gaming 101 praised the patch for the quality of its translation and called it "one of the finest examples of fan efforts in video gaming".
A high-definition video remake of the game was released in March 2017. It features a remixed soundtrack and new artwork, with Ryo Nagi of Ar Tonelico as character designer. It was developed by 5pb, which acquired the rights from the now-defunct ELF. It was announced in December 2014 and its release date was delayed several times – first to February 2016, then to the second quarter of 2016, then late 2016 and finally to March 2017.
|YU-NO: A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bound of this World|
Key visual of the 2019 anime series
(Kono Yo no Hate de Koi o Utau Shōjo YU-NO)
|Original video animation|
|Directed by||Katsuma Kanazawa|
|Written by||Hiroyuki Kanno (original) |
Osamu Kudo (screenplay)
Katsuma Kanazawa (storyboard)
|Released||October 23, 1998 – September 24, 1999|
|Written by||Sōji Ishida|
|Original run||March 14, 2017 – March 15, 2018|
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Tetsuo Hirakawa|
|Music by||Keishi Yonao |
|Original network||AT-X, Tokyo MX, ABC, BS Fuji|
|Original run||April 2, 2019 – present|
In 2016, a new anime adaptation that was produced by Feel in collaboration with MAGES and Genco was announced. The new anime premiered on April 2, 2019 on AT-X, Tokyo MX, ABC, and BS Fuji. The series will be a six-month-long series with 26 episodes. The anime is directed by Tetsuo Hirakawa, and the characters are designed by Mai Otsuka. Kazuya Tanaka is the sound director, and Keishi Yonao and Ryu Takumi are composing the series' music. Asaka performed the series' opening theme song Kono Yo no Hate de Koi o Utau Shojo (この世の果てで恋を唄う少女 Kono Yo no Hate de Koi o Utau Shōjo), while the closing song Shinri no Kagami, Tsurugi no Yō ni (真理の鏡、剣乃ように Shinri no Kagami, Tsurugi no Yō ni) was performed by Konomi Suzuki.
Hirakawa said the anime includes the same characters and routes as the original game. In contrast with the game's first-person perspective from protagonist Takuya's point of view, the anime will depict the relationships of the girls surrounding Takuya. Hirakawa said the anime would outdo the game in dirty jokes, that Mio would be even more tsundere, and that Kanna would be even more mysterious.
|1||"The Spectacle of Seduction"|
Transcription: "Yūwaku suru Jishōtachi" (Japanese: 誘惑する事象たち)
|October 23, 1998|
|2||"The Concerto of Strange Incontinuity"|
Transcription: "Furenzokutai no Koncheruto" (Japanese: 不連続体のコンチェルト)
|January 22, 1999|
|3||"The Cinderella of the Junction"|
Transcription: "Bunkiten no Shinderera" (Japanese: 分岐点のシンデレラ)
|June 25, 1999|
|4||"The Goddess Sings at the Edge of the World"|
Transcription: "Sekai no Hate de Megami wa Utau" (Japanese: 世界の果てで女神は唄う)
|September 24, 1999|
|No.||Title||Original air date|
Transcription: "You Know?" (Japanese: You Know?)
|April 2, 2019|
|2||"Parallel World Constitutive Theorem"|
Transcription: "Heiretsu Sekai Kōsei Genri" (Japanese: 並列世界構成原理)
|April 9, 2019|
|3||"Tears That Can't Be Stopped"|
Transcription: "Tomerarenai Namida" (Japanese: 止められない涙)
|April 16, 2019|
|4||"Dirtied White Skin"|
Transcription: "Kegasareta Shiroi Hada" (Japanese: 穢された白い肌)
|April 23, 2019|
|5||"Spiral of Tragedy"|
Transcription: "Higeki no Rasen" (Japanese: 悲劇の螺旋)
|April 30, 2019|
|6||"Beyond a Pale Light"|
Transcription: "Aojiroki Hikari no Kanata ni" (Japanese: 青白き光の彼方に)
|May 7, 2019|
|7||"The Cause of the Curse"|
Transcription: "Tatari Sōdō no Genkyō" (Japanese: タタリ騒動の元凶)
|May 14, 2019|
|8||"The Swallows and Sparrows Know Not"|
Transcription: "Enjaku Izukunzo" (Japanese: 燕雀いずくんぞ)
|May 21, 2019|
|9||"The Distance Between Him and Her"|
Transcription: "Kare to Kanojo no Kyori" (Japanese: 彼と彼女の距離)
|May 28, 2019|
Transcription: "Kasanaru Omoi" (Japanese: 重なる想い)
|June 4, 2019|
|11||"That Kiss, Once More"|
Transcription: "Mō Ichido Ano Kisu o" (Japanese: もう一度あのキスを)
|June 11, 2019|
|12||"The Secret Under the White Coat"|
Transcription: "Hakui no Shita no Himitsu" (Japanese: 白衣の下の秘密)
|June 18, 2019|
|13||"An Ordained Fate"|
Transcription: "Sadamerareta Unmei" (Japanese: 定められた運命)
|June 25, 2019|
|14||"The Transfer Student's Friend"|
Transcription: "Tenkōsei no Otomodachi" (Japanese: 転校生のお友達)
|July 2, 2019|
|15||"A Summer That Won't Come Back"|
Transcription: "Modoranai Natsu" (Japanese: 戻らない夏)
|July 9, 2019|
|16||"Inside Unmoving Time"|
Transcription: "Ugokanai Toki no Naka de" (Japanese: 動かない時の中で)
|July 16, 2019|
|17||"A Pale Ephemeral Vow"|
Transcription: "Aoku Hakanaki Chikai" (Japanese: 青く儚き誓い)
|July 23, 2019|
A manga adaptation by Mario Kaneda was published in Enix's G Fantasy magazine from 1997 to 1998. A manga adaptation by Sōji Ishida ran in Enterbrain's Comic Clear magazine from March 14, 2017 to March 15, 2018.
According to statistics compiled by Digital Media Insider, 45,844 (30,553 CD edition, 15,291 floppy edition) copies were sold by November 30, 1997, excluding ELF's direct mail-order sales. In the 1997 annual ranking in Digital Media Insider, the CD edition was listed in 14th place, with number-one-ranked "SHOCK PRICE Mah-jongg" selling 77,102 copies, and the top-selling adult game "Sadistic King Rance" at number three, selling 72,572 copies. The March 1997 edition of Comptiq stated that YU-NO had already sold over 100,000 copies.
YU-NO won a reader's choice award in Blitz King's "2nd Video Game Awards Grand Prix" in May 1997. The game also was ranked ninth in E-Login's "Game and Heroine of the year 1996", and fifth in Comptiq's "1st Video Game Awards Grand Prix" in 1998.
The news that the PC-98 edition would be ported to Saturn was reported by several magazines including Sega Saturn Magazine, Dengenki Saturn, and Famitsu. Sega Saturn Magazine included a four-page feature on YU-NO. Sales reports of the Sega Saturn edition range from 139,509 to 240,820 copies.
Sega Saturn Magazine scored the game 27 out of 30, with its three reviewers each rating it 9 out of 10. RPGFan gave the game a 97% score, including ratings of 100% for story, 100% for control, 85% gameplay, 80% graphics, and 80% sound/music. Reviewer WooJin Lee said the story is "amazing" and praised the A.D.M.S. for adding replay value, concluding that "I feel this game to be THE best Graphical Adventure game ever, which from me (I play tons of these games) is a huge compliment".
The remake sold 40,000 copies within its first month of release, March 2017, which 5pb celebrated by releasing a YU-NO-themed wallpaper.
At Hardcore Gaming 101, Audun Sorlie wrote that YU-NO helped revolutionize the visual novel genre, particularly with the A.D.M.S., which was touted as "revolutionary" at the time. At Gamasutra, Sorlie wrote that audiences soon began demanding large-scope plotlines and musical scores of similar quality and ambition to that of YU-NO's, and that companies responded by hiring talent: "The genre became an all-new arena for young artists and musicians once again, with companies willing to take chances on fresh blood; the market thrived with the excitement and the risks that were being taken, and became a hotbed of creativity".
According to ITmedia, the influence of YU-NO goes beyond visual novels and extends to modern Otaku works in general. The mangaka Tamiki Wakaki, for example, has cited YU-NO as an influence on the manga and anime series, The World God Only Knows. Other visual novel and manga authors who cited YU-NO as an influence include Romeo Tanaka, Poyoyon Rock, Jun Maeda, Type-Moon's Hikaru Sakurai, White Album 2 and Saekano author Fumiaki Maruto, and To Heart author Toru Minazuki.
According to Anime News Network, YU-NO is "considered one of the most beloved narrative games in Japan, and its system of parallel storylines had a profound influence on storytelling in visual novels in the years since its original release." They said it "was incredibly popular for its time and likely inspired a lot of media after its release" and they noted its premise is "adjacent to Steins;Gate." According to RPG Site and DualShockers, YU-NO influenced later visual novels such as Fate/stay night and Steins;Gate.
- Japanese: Kono yo no hate de koi o utau Shōjo YU-NO (この世の果てで恋を唄う少女YU-NO)
- Sorlie, Audun (2011). "Yu-No". Hardcore Gaming 101. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "Obituary: Ryu Umemoto (1974 - 2011)". vgmonline.net. Retrieved 2011-08-23.
- "YU-NO/EVE Game Creator Hiroyuki Kanno Passes Away". Anime News Network. 2011-12-25. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "Eve & YU-NO Creator Dead at 37". AnimeNation. December 26, 2011. Retrieved 16 August 2012.
- "Spike Chunsoft to Release YU-NO Visual Novel on PS4/PC in 2019". Anime News Network. July 6, 2018. Retrieved July 6, 2018.
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- Tactics Ogre: Let Us Cling Together, GamesRadar, February 15, 2011
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- "YU-NO Anime's 1st Promo Video Reveals Cast, Staff, April Premiere". Anime News Network. September 19, 2018. Retrieved September 19, 2018.
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- Funimation. "[Master Thread] YU-NO: A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bound of This World (Dubbed)". www.funimation.com. Retrieved 2019-04-22.
- Sorlie, Audun (September 25, 2012). "Memorial: Composer Ryu Umemoto". Gamasutra. Retrieved March 14, 2019.
- "5pb. Remaking Classic Visual Novel YU-NO". Siliconera. Retrieved 17 July 2015.
- "YU-NO remake confirmed for PS4 and PS Vita, launches February 18 in Japan". Gematsu. Retrieved 30 October 2015.
- "YU-NO remake delayed to spring 2016 in Japan". Gematsu. Retrieved 15 May 2018.
- "YU-NO remake launches November 17 in Japan". Gematsu. Retrieved 15 May 2018.
- "YU-NO remake delayed to March 16 in Japan". Gematsu. Retrieved 15 May 2018.
- Lada, Jenni (2019-05-22). "YU-NO Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, And PC Versions Arrive In October 2019". Siliconera. Curse, Inc. Archived from the original on 2019-05-22. Retrieved 2019-05-22.
- "YU-NO/第1幕「誘惑する事象たち」" (in Japanese). Pink Pineapple. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
- "YU-NO Sci-Fi Visual Novel Gets Anime Project". Anime News Network. December 26, 2016. Retrieved December 26, 2016.
- "YU-NO Anime's 2nd Promo Video Previews Asaka's Opening Song". Anime News Network. February 19, 2019. Retrieved February 19, 2019.
- "YU-NO Anime Project to be 2-Cour Series". Anime News Network. December 29, 2017. Retrieved December 29, 2017.
- "YU-NO Anime Reveals Director, Designer, Plans to Depict All Routes". Anime News Network. March 3, 2018. Retrieved December 29, 2017.
- "YU-NO Anime Gets New Episode in December". Anime News Network. May 22, 2019. Retrieved May 22, 2019.
- "Funimation Adds YU-NO: A girl who chants love at the bound of this world. to Spring Streaming Lineup". Anime News Network. April 2, 2019. Retrieved April 2, 2019.
- "YU-NO Manga Ends in 2nd Volume in March". Anime News Network. February 8, 2018. Retrieved April 1, 2019.
- "１９９７年 テレビゲームソフト 年間売上 ＴＯＰ１００（ファミ通７００号記事ベース）". nifty.com. Retrieved 30 October 2015.
- "YU-NO" (PDF). Sega Saturn Magazine. 1997 (43). 12 December 1997. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
- "RPGFan Reviews - Yu-No". rpgfan.com. Retrieved 30 October 2015.
- "YU-NO remake total sales top 40,000". Gematsu. Retrieved 15 May 2018.
- "名作「YU-NO」リメイク版をサターン版と比較し徹底レビュー！". ITmedia (in Japanese). April 16, 2017. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
- "This Week in Games - Anime Expo Extravaganza". Anime News Network. July 12, 2018. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
- "The Spring 2019 Anime Preview Guide - YU-NO: A Girl Who Chants Love At The Bound Of This World". Anime News Network. 23 April 2019. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
- "For the unaware, Hiroyuki Kanno is a huge influence in Japanese games and VNs. Fate/stay night, Steins;Gate, etc owe a lot to him and YU-NO". RPG Site. 14 April 2016. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
- "Steins;Gate 10th Anniversary Projects Announced". DualShockers. 2 April 2019. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
- Official site for the remake (in Japanese)
- YU-NO: A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bound of this World at The Visual Novel Database
- Hardcore Gaming 101's in-depth review of the game and its history, mirror
- Yu-No at MobyGames
- Yu-No at GameFAQs
- Official anime website ‹See Tfd›(in Japanese)
- YU-NO: A Girl Who Chants Love at the Bound of this World (anime) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia
- YU-NO (OVA) at Anime News Network's encyclopedia