Conclusion: Concept: Solve a mystery in a hotel by walking to lots of places
Graphics: Pretty blocky, but pulls it off thanks to the stylistic art direction
Sound: The twists on familiar tunes create a great atmosphere
Playability: Backtracking and fetch quests comprise the majority of your time with the controls
Entertainment: If you can bully through the awful pacing and structure, the story is neat
Replay: Moderately Low
Conclusion: All of these descriptions fit the story of Flower, Sun, and Rain in some way, and even the fact that Kafka’s work was often left unfinished and unresolved fits with the idea that the game’s conflict feels unfinished without having played through Silver Case. It is for these reasons why, despite the poor design choices, I cannot in good faith claim that Suda51 has no idea what he is doing.
Excerpt: Sumio immediately finds the entire island is stuck in a time loop, though he perceives it as a sort of dream. Every morning he rises with his singular goal in mind, but he always gets sidetracked by an unrelated request. Hell, it takes him a week's worth of days just to make it outside the hotel grounds. Once his daily task is completed, the doomed airliner explodes overhead, right on schedule. Time for the next wakeup call.
Conclusion: Flower, Sun and Rain is the same way: it is an experience you enjoy despite the core gameplay mechanics, simply because what you are presented and offered up is something you simply aren't prepared for (something sadly missing in the world of sequels and "me too" games we're inundated with these days). So, taking all of that into account, I cannot, with any clear conscience, recommend Flower, Sun and Rain to everyone.
Excerpt: Flower, Sun, and Rain has finally made its way to the U.S., and in doing so it may have earned itself the right of being among the most niche titles ever to be placed onto a DS cartridge. Originally released as a PS2 title in Japan in 2001 and designed by Suda51 of Killer7 and No More Heroes fame, Flower, Sun, and Rain has a difficult time escaping not only subpar visuals and gameplay mechanics, but poor game design that would be deemed “bad” in any year.
Excerpt: Imagine yourself at a beautiful resort. Got that? Okay. Wait...what's that? Every day repeats itself? And you have to defuse a terrorist bomb before a plane explodes? Man...some resort. Luckily, you're actually there on a job. You're a "Searcher" (basically a freelance detective with no law enforcement affiliation) named Sumio Mondo, and your literal job description is "finding lost things".
Summary: Flower, Sun and Rain is a mystery adventure, in the vein of Groundhog Day, where you play a detective charged with locating and defusing a bomb by solving thought-provoking puzzles with a wealth of bizarre outcomes.