This is it, the final entry to the Grisaia trilogy. Kajitsu was about Yuuji solving the girls’ problems and Meikyuu was a long flashback with a strong sequel hook. Rakuen is the conclusion of the story and resolves things in ridiculous action movie fashion with the ultimate harem end.
I’ve only finished the main story and still working my way through the other stuff, but overall it was enjoyable with all the heroines and sub heroines banding together to save Yuuji, although the way the plot decided to fly off into SF category and generally ridiculous action movie stunts will probably bother some people.
Spoilers ahead, like usual.
My problem isn’t the shift to sci-fi or solutions that seem fitting for an American action movie, since the former isn’t all that surprising with Amane’s route from Kajitsu in mind, and the latter is somewhat expected from Makina’s route. Absolutely no one should be surprised that Kazuki is alive. My issue is that Heath Olso, the main villain, didn’t get enough build up and neither did Yuuji’s clone, which happened to be the longest and most symbolic battle in the story since Yuuji is ultimately fighting against himself who was once taught to be a killing machine. At least you got a vocal song playing and several cool lines for that fight. Oslo was a disappointment as a final boss since the battle didn’t last very long, and his character isn’t very compelling. Also, the final twist revealing that Heath Oslo is actually an old man (the guy shown for the majority of the story is a clone because the real dude is too old to move) reeks of old RPG bullshit where the guy you’ve been trying to defeat for the past 30-40 hours is not really the final boss, and some otherworldly evil introduced in the last hour has been pulling his strings all along.
The “asspulls” that happen at the end like how Asako actually bought an island have been briefly foreshadowed back in Meikyuu, but those segments were insignificant enough that anyone not paying careful attention would call bullshit. Generally, everything feels too convenient since Kazuki as the Thanatos System has access to all the information networks in Japan and can essentially do and predict everything, Although, it can’t help but be fun when everyone that Yuuji has befriended (and is alive) gets together to save him from Ichigaya & Heath Oslo’s grasps, so I don’t mind the cliche parts. Millie is surprisingly awesome as a pilot. You get a bunch of fun action movie-like scenes, and it’s finally the heroines’ time to shine and be proactive. Everything up to Yuuji’s rescue and before the final showdown mentioned above was fun if ridiculous, The five main heroines banding together to retrieve Yuuji from powerful organizations is undeniably unrealistic when Kajitsu and Meikyuu have been pretty grounded in realism when it comes to the solution of problems, but it was enjoyable and rather expected from the end of Meikyuu. For maximum enjoyment, sit back and don’t take it too seriously.
The final battle was a letdown, but the first ~75% was enjoyable with plenty of awesome character interactions missed from Kajitsu’s common route, although some parts dragged on as I was expecting things to become action-packed much earlier. Rakuen also implies that Yuuji conquered all the routes and goes with a 100% happy harem end where he lives with his main harem, Kazuki, JB, and Chizuru on an island Asako bought. Grisaia is what they named the island, thus explaining the title. The Grisaia trilogy was fun and refreshing with its daring characters, great interactions, and military references along with explaining many technical things in meticulous detail. I found Meikyuu’s grand route to be the most well-paced and “has its shit together” entry. Kajitsu is probably the best for slice-of-life and romance thanks to its common route and the existence of actual character routes. Rakuen could have been better paced and handled when it came to the final battle, but doesn’t do a bad job of tying the series up as its grand finale. It helps that I enjoy ridiculous action movie stunts. At the end, it’s the characters that made the game, though.
Makina is still the best girl.
…but a Sacchin is fine as well.