Nee Summer is a doujin eroge series by Artemis. The first game was released in August 2008 and the second the same month of the following year. The two games were released together as Nee Summer Festival in early 2011. Because both games are short and I played them back to back I’m going to talk about both in one post.
The first Nee Summer takes place during a summer that the protagonist, Yuuta, spends living with his older female cousin, Kei, so he can study under her to get into the same college as a girl he fell in love with at first sight years ago. There’s pretty much no plot to the game. At the beginning of each day you get to choose to study alone or with Kei, and depending on which you choose you’ll either get some banter with Kei or some banter with Kei and an ero scene. The dialogue is fairly good, but the comedy relies too much on violence and watching Kei beat up Yuuta got old well before the game ended. It’s still more than enough to carry the game between ero scenes. The ero scenes gradually escalate throughout the game and take awhile to reach actual sex, but in contrast Yuuta and Kei’s relationship doesn’t develop at all. Naturally, Kei harbors hidden romantic feelings for her younger cousin, but there’s no romantic development in the story until the very end when the foregone conclusion that the two will become a couple plays out just as you would expect. The lack of romantic development, or any development really, despite them doing increased sexual stuff, combined with how quickly and insignificantly they begin engaging in it, makes the “story” of Nee Summer feel fake like an ero manga or bad nukige.
Nee Summer 2 takes place the following summer. Yuuta and Kei are now engaged (all the relationship development conveniently taking place between games) when Yuuta’s real nee-sama Otoha arrives and declares that she will not recognize their incestuous relationship (because she has her own incestuous feelings for her brother). Eventually it’s decided that she will allow them to marry if Yuuta beats her at kendo. The flow of Nee Summer 2 is exactly like the first, except now you get more options each day. Now you can talk to Kei or Otoha, practice kendo (there’s a mini game you have to beat at the end of the summer), or do nothing. Once again, depending on your choice you get either dialogue or sex. I was hoping that the relationship between Yuuta and Otoha would be different from his with Kei, but unfortunately the dynamic in their exchanges is nearly identical. Once again there’s lots of abuse and I was already sick of it from first game. Luckily the fights between Kei and Otoha allow for a welcome change of pace in the humor, which is overall much better than in the first game. Nee Summer 2 actually has what could be called a plot, though other than a few scenes here and there it’s all concentrated at the end of the story. What is there is pretty well written, but it still feels like too little too late.
The main writer for the first game, and sole writer for the second, is the same writer as Siskon, Tenki Ame. Comparing the three games really shows how he progressed and improved as a writer. The first game’s writing has some sense of style and there are some puns, though not as many or as good of ones as in his later games. The second game’s writing is greatly improved (him being the only writer might also be a factor). The style is more clearly defined and the metaphors and imagery are excellent. He once again showcases his ability to use extended metaphors throughout a story to great effect. The wordplay is more prevalent and clever, but I still didn’t think it was as good as in Siskon. The difference probably isn’t as significant as I felt, but having played Siskon first I wasn’t able to enjoy Nee Summer 2’s as much as I should have because it was a step back (though admittedly because I was taking a step back in time).
Higashida Kei: The protagonist’s older female cousin who he hasn’t seen in years. She’s pretty much a stereotypical cold and stern nee-san character. I don’t really like that archetype too much. She’s also tomboyish to the point of being manly, which I don’t care much for either, though I did like her style of speech. On the plus side her dere side comes out fast and hard. I was hoping for more of it during the second game, since she was in a relationship with the protagonist by then, but sadly their relationship is barely any different between the two games and the same goes for her.
Takeuchi Otoha: The protagonist’s blood related older sister who was away for years being a world famous pianist. For the most part she’s a standard ojou-sama character but she has some peculiarities to her personality that I really liked. And like Kei she has strong dere side that frequently and suddenly appears. I liked her a lot more than Kei so it was too bad she only shows up in the second game.
Takeuchi Yuuta: The protagonist. He’s stupid, lazy, worthless, and pretty much an all around failure. Comes dangerously close to being hetare. Still, he’s really funny and even though he’s a loser he’s not actually annoying. In the second game in particular his weakness is endearing more than anything else.
The music is pretty good. The sound quality is really high for a doujin eroge but the composition for a lot of the tracks was rather generic. For the ones that weren’t mediocre it was great. So the soundtrack is pretty hit or miss. Though I guess mediocre doesn’t count as a full-on “miss.” I was expecting a lot of repeated music in the second game but all of the tracks were new. Overall I liked the first game’s soundtrack better.
Surprisingly each game has an OP (no links up top because they’re hard to find streaming due to being NSFW). The OPs are only slightly above average for eroge OPs but that’s still pretty impressive for a doujin game. I actually preferred the instrumental versions that serve as each game’s title music because the vocals were the weakest aspect of the OPs.
There are only two voiced characters. Kei’s seiyuu overacted. Otoha’s did a good job especially with the character’s speech style and quirks.
Basically the same as what I said for Siskon (same artist). Amazing stuff. The style was slightly different in a way that I liked less, it wasn’t as unique, but that’s a very minor issue. For the most part I was surprised that the art was basically just as good despite being one or two years older, depending on the game. Nee Summer 1 had a whole two non-ero CGs. The second game had more, which makes sense since it had more actual story.
The ero is good but not as good as in a good nukige. The art is of course excellent but the descriptions aren’t very arousing. On the other hand the situations are pretty good. The gap between the heroines’ normal behavior and their submissiveness (not quite the right word) during sex was probably the best thing about the ero. There’s an 甘える button you can push during ero scenes that makes the girls even more dere. If you don’t press it the scenes can take on a slight femdom tone (I think, I only read a couple of those scenes because I’m not really into that stuff). Some scenes have that femdom feel to begin with and you can’t sweeten them.
For some reason in the second game the heroines kept talking about smegma and phimosis and playing with Yuuta’s foreskin and shit. I still don’t know why the Japanese find that hot. They also started talking about how small Yuuta’s dick is. This makes no sense because it looks average-sized for eroge, in other words significantly larger than average, and Kei never said anything about it being small in the first game.
Pros: Great writing and art; Funny; Good ero
Cons: Not much development in terms of plot or characters; Jokes don’t get better when someone gets hit, kicked, or choked after every punch line, in fact they get worse
The production values are incredible and Tenki Ame is a great writer, but it all feels wasted when the scenario just isn’t there. Nee Summer 1 is basically just sex with some decent comedy. Nee Summer 2 is a lot better because of even better comedy and some actual plot, but it still felt like the sex was the main point and everything else was secondary. This wouldn’t be as much of a problem if the ero were better, but it can’t compare to the ero in better nukige. So in the end this isn’t really recommendable as either a story game or a fapping game. I don’t think I’d recommend it as a character game either, though that’s probably how one could look at it most favorably. I still enjoyed it but couldn’t help feeling disappointed by the wasted potential.