Vol. 1: Toki no Maigo
Vol. 2 Inochigake no Tabi
Vol. 3 Watashi ni Sayonara wo
|Platform(s):||Windows, Mac, Super Nintendo Entertainment System, Sega Saturn, PlayStation, 3DO|
Emit (エミット) is an adventure game that is the first entry of Shibusawa Kou's "English Dream" series -followed by the two-part entry, Dark Hunter. The purpose behind both projects is to teach Japanese people the English language with the help of a thrilling narrative. Each game has English consultants with a dual language and subtitle option for players. While the English Dream series has been largely forgotten, both titles appeared on Koei's 2003 Winter Thanks Rare Campaign with cheaper prices.
This game was released as three separate parts. The first part is Lost Child of Time (時の迷子), the second is Life-Risking Journey (命がけの旅), and the final is Farewell to Me (私にさよならを). For consumers who wanted to hear the game's spoken dialogue in the SNES version, Koei developed a secondary hardware named Voicer-kun. Emit and Voicer-kun were released on the same day, and an option to buy both products as a companion pack was made available. Voicer-kun was likely planned to be applied for other products, but the only other title made compatible with it was Angelique Voice Fantasy.
The scenario was composed by Jirō Akagawa and the character designs were made by Mutsumi Inomata. Koei also released a CD compilation of her original illustrations soon after Emit was released. Emit won the 1994 Yomiuri Shimbun Prize in the 1995 Japan Software Grand Prix.
The game's title is the backwards spelling of "time" and not the actual word "emit".
On October 5, 1994, a seventeen year old high school student named Yuri meets an elderly gentleman at the crosswalk. Addressing her in the respectful terms usually reserved for dignitaries and one's elders, he asks her where the nearby watchmaker's is. She is puzzled by his respectful tone, and answers him honestly that she doesn't know of any watchmaker's in the area. As Yuri walks across the street, she hears the man mummer the word "Emit" to her. That evening Yuri asks her mother Toshiko's about the watchmaker's, and she tells Yuri that it was replaced by a bookstore years ago. However, Yuri ultimately decides it is better not to get involved with the elderly man.
A month later, an oddly familiar yet attractive man approaches her on the street. While chatting at a coffee shop, the mysterious man explains that he is the same elderly gentleman from before. He is a traveler from another world, where the people's bodies age in the reverse direction; what looks to be an elderly person in her world is actually the form of a child in his world. While in Yuri's world he ages a year every day. After another month or so on Yuri's world, he will age to be "too young" and die. Learning that the tunnel back to his world has been broken, he asks for her help to locate another entrance. Yuri does not believe him and leaves in an angry fit.
At the end of November, Yuri and her friend spot a sad and frail looking boy during their lunch break. Yuri has never seen the boy before, but she recognizes his eyes. Realizing that the man was telling the truth, she skips classes to help him. She takes him to the basement of the bookstore, where they find an old door in the ground. At the boy's direction, she writes the word "Emit" on it, allowing them to open the door. Before returning to his world, the boy tells Yuri the reason why he came specifically to her for help: she reminds him of his mother.
While browsing the bookstore, Yuri runs into one of her friends from middle school, Ichiro. She hasn't seen him in a year, but he claims that he saw her the night before at a friend's birthday party. Ichiro says that Yuri's lookalike told him that if he wanted to see her again he just needed to say the word, "Emit". Remembering that the boy she saved said she looked like his mother, Yuri curiously heads back to the doorway for the other world. As she opens the doorway, Yuri sees a woman who mirrors her exact appearance. The other Yuri forces her through the other side and closes the door.
As she lands in the other world, Yuri is mistaken for the woman who looks like her and is arrested for traveling between worlds. The same elderly looking child she rescued bails her out, pretending she is his mother. He introduces himself as Ken and tells Yuri that his mother, named Julia, came to her world after being intrigued by his stories about it. There she met and fell instantly in love with Ichiro, so Ken assumes she is now trying to take Yuri's place in her world.
Now aging a year each day just as Ken did, Yuri races back to the doorway to rectify what has transpired. Ken distracts one of the armed guards, and Yuri slips past the other. As she is riding the elevator down to the doorway, the other guard reaches the elevator door and shoots her from there.
Back in Yuri's world, Yuri's mother and Ichiro discuss how the girl is acting strangely. Her habits are much neater and she now remembers the birthday party. "Yuri" arrives and Ichiro asks her to return a book he lent her. Realizing this is a test, Julia answers "What book?". But when Ichiro presses on with details, she folds against his bluff and pretends she remembers the book and doesn't know where she put it. Ichiro tells Yuri's mother, and they decide to interrogate Julia about Yuri's whereabouts. But Julia, having realized her response to Ichiro's test was unconvincing, has fled, leaving a half-finished farewell note. They go out to hunt for her.
Yuri returns home with a wounded arm. With no one else home, she rests on the couch and barely dodges a knife blow from Julia. Too weak from blood loss to defend herself, she tries to persuade Julia to leave by saying Ken is worried about her. Julia hesitates, and Ichiro and Yuri's mother return, forcing her to retreat.
Days later, Yuri sees the bookstore is scheduled to be torn down the next day, including the basement, and realizes Julia will be trapped. Yuri meets Ken, who has come looking for Julia. To help the search, Yuri and Ichiro pose as a couple in the streets to attract her attention. The plan works and Julia, now in the body of a child, has a tearful parting with Ichiro.
Yuri watches the construction workers do their job the following day, contenting herself with the possibility that there are doorways to Emit in other parts of the world.
There are two main modes in each title: the story and the exercises. In story mode, the player watches animated scenes with the option to change the voices and subtitles to either language. As they view each scene, the player may pause at anytime to look up an underlined term they don't understand or to change the language settings. The player can jump to any section of a scene at any point.
The exercises consist of multi-choice questions and practice scenarios for testing the player's comprehension. Phrases and words that are featured are terms found in everyday language (i.e.: times of day, formal greetings, etc.), so it's a beneficial guide for those trying to learn English. Quizzes do not punish or reward the player in any way and are there to be tried at the player's leisure.
- Yuri Tanaka (田中 百合)
- Voiced by: Megumi Hayashibara (Japanese), Danni Wheeler (English)
- The game's protagonist, Yuri is a mild-mannered and caring teenager who loves to read books. She lives at her home with her parents and her younger brother. Although she didn't want to believe her odd encounter, she is excited of her knowledge of a secret parallel world. However, her actual visit in the other world has her appreciate her home in spite of her early interest. She wants to restore everyone to their proper places and bring happiness to the other her.
- Ken (ケン)
- Voiced by: Yoshito Yasuhara (Japanese; older and young adult), Takeyuki (Japanese; younger); James A Taylor (English; older and young adult), Robin Bufanda (English; younger)
- Unnamed in the first volume, Ken introduces himself by the second. Thankful to Yuri for helping him, Ken tries to support his friend in anyway he can. Yuri eventually thinks fondly of him and her ties to his mother, at one pointing calling him "my boy".
- Toshiko Tanaka (田中 敏子)
- Voiced by: Cheryl Shain (English)
- Yuri's mother. Though Yuri's interdimensional travels are kept a secret from her, she becomes involved when Julia tries to take Yuri's place.
- Yoko Ozawa (小沢 洋子)
- Voiced by: Etsuko Ishikawa (Japanese), Thyra Metz (English)
- One of Yuri's friends from school. She is a smart student and likes to chat with Yuri on the phone. Yoko thinks the other world is nonsensical but is fascinated by her friend's story of it.
- Ichiro Ota (太田 一郎)
- Voiced by: Shō Hayami (Japanese), Stuart Mckinney (English)
- Yuri's friend from junior high school. He is well aware of Yuri's personality and is surprised to see her act completely different from before. Clueless of the other Yuri's feelings for him, Ichiro helps his friend catch her.
- Julia (ジュリア)
- Voiced by: Megumi Hayashibara (Japanese), Danni Wheeler (English)
- In spite of her being a mirror image of Yuri, Julia is Ken's mother. She heard the wonders of the other world from her son and wanted to visit it personally. Falling instantly in love with Ichiro, she wants to replace Yuri with herself. Tired of being old in her own world, she likes Yuri's world more than her own.
Differences between portsEdit
- The Super Famicom version uses an audio CD with tracks of 10-15 seconds in length, so there is a considerable pause between each segment of dialogue as the game accesses the next track. In the Saturn and PlayStation versions, each chapter is loaded into RAM when the player selects it, allowing the scenes to play smoothly, without pauses. In the 3DO version, the cinemas are read from the CD on the fly, which eliminates load times but results in pauses between each line of dialogue.
- The Saturn, 3DO, and PlayStation versions have a title screen. In the Super Famicom versions, the game goes directly to the main menu after the intro cinema.
- The main menus in the Super Famicom versions are stylized to look like the pages of an old book. The Saturn, 3DO, and PlayStation versions use much simpler menu graphics, with plain white text on a blue background.
- In the Super Famicom and Saturn versions, answering a quiz question correctly is rewarded with a blue circle saying "Yes that's correct". In the 3DO version, this is replaced with a more elaborate visual: an orange circle (still saying "Yes that's correct"), a banner reading "Congratulations", and an image of Yuri smiling.
- The 3DO version of Emit Vol. 1 includes an exclusive mini-game.
- There is a memory manager in each of the 3DO versions; this is because some 3DO Interactive Multiplayer models do not have a built-in memory manager.
- Performed by: Ryoko Shinohara