Ever17 is the tale of seven individuals who come to be trapped within the underwater marine theme park, LeMU, 51 meters below the surface. During an apparently normal day at the park, an incident occurs, placing almost half of the facility underwater. The path to the surface and the communication lines are cut off. In addition, LeMU is under constant assault by severe water pressure, limiting time to find a means of escape to 119 hours. Escape is not the only concern, however; many questions arise as to the legitimacy of the accident and whether or not those trapped there were brought there for a purpose.
As the situation grows more desperate, the people trapped inside LeMU grow closer. They begin to uncover the answers to mysteries about themselves, LeMU, and the situation itself. As the end of LeMU grows nearer, the mysteries and relationships forged by the situation grow deeper. Ultimately, it is up to the characters not only to survive, but to discover the truth behind LeMU and themselves as well.
The Ever 17 manga is an adaptation of a visual novel developed by KID under the same title. Ever 17 is the second installment of the Infinity series released by KID (Kindle Imagine Develop) on 2002 and is still one of the most highly regarded titles.
The scenario writers Takumi Nakazawa and Kotaro Uchikoshi have a signature style of storytelling that utilizes a medium’s uniqueness (visual novel’s Infinity series and Zero Escape series for the Nintendo DS). The exploitation of visual novel mechanics in Ever 17 is an integral part of what makes it one of the greatest stories ever told in the medium. For that
reason any serious adaptation of it will almost surely fail; this manga is no exception. This review will mainly feature a comparison between the visual novel and the manga. There will be minor spoilers.
Story (5/10): The first 13 chapters are loosely based on Tsugumi’s good end. The introductory parts of the manga is somewhat faithful to the original. From there, many manga-only shounen-esque elements and odd fanservice scenes were added. Events from Sora and You’s routes were also present; giving it an almost harem feel. The mystery elements were poor presented and have become secondary to the romance. The fast pace create jarring transitions between suspense and comedy.
After the main events with the heroines the plot is completely modified and simplified. The manga skips a large portion of the visual novel and heads straight towards the last segment. While the last portion is somewhat close to the original, needless to say it did not deliver the same amount of impact. Finally we get to the ending, and understand the reason for this adaptation is just to say “read the visual novel”.
Characters (4/10): The blazing fast pace does not allow much room for character development. The choice to mix in a bit from each heroine’s arcs did not help. The result is minimal character development across the board. The only redeeming quality is that there is a focus on the main pair; the key factor for emotional impact.
Art (5/10): Nothing special, the manga rendition of the visual novel CGs is in no way an improvement.
Enjoyment (5/10): As a fan of the visual novel I found the early parts of the manga to be enjoyable due to the new content. The rest of it is ultimately disappointing.
Overall (5/10): This adaptation attempts to pose questions and draw readers to read the visual novel. The problem is that the questions are poorly posed and it is doubtful if any readers would want to read the visual novel after reading the manga first. Still, its short length and fast pace combined with decent comedy and suspense should be able to keep one reading till the end.
I have not seen any reviews for this so I thought I would write one. For the uninitiated out there, Ever 17 was a visual novel for the PC made by KiD in 2002. It is by far the best visual novel I have ever played, and has not only one of the greatest stories in visual novels, but (what I believe to be) one of the greatest in media itself.
It is sadly underappreciated, so when I heard a manga was being made for it, on the one hand I was glad, because it would be getting more mainstream exposure. On the other, I was
very skeptical of it, and I will now explain why.
Story: Simply put, the story of Ever 17 cannot be told in manga form. For me to explain why it can't work, would involve spoilers of the original visual novel. Let me put it to you this way, the way in which the plot is constructed in the VN means it cannot work in any other format. Especially with the way the manga presents things. The start of the story can be done I suppose, but as with many VN's there are multiple routes. Some anime such as Shuffle and Clannad(kinda) were able to pull this off. What I will say is that they will definitely not be able to do the True Ending. Currently the manga seems to be following Tsugumi's route.
I can think of at least three of the plot twists, that would make no sense whatsoever in manga form. And these are vital plot points that can't be written around. You probably think I'm crazy, but trust me anyone who has played the VN will say the same thing.
Which means the writer(s) for this manga are going to have to take some major liberties for this story to work. Speaking on what they have done so far, they have followed faithfully to the VN's story, although they have added a couple of plot points, originally not present, which gives me faith they have this planned out.
Artwork: The artwork is very good! The characters and backgrounds are well drawn. Compared to their VN incarnations, the characters are drawn a little more "rounded" but apart from that they keep faithful to their original designs.
Characters: The manga is not really that far into the characters' personalities yet, but I can tell you from playing the VN that all of the characters are excellent, every single one is vital to the storyline and if you removed one the story falls apart, all of them are well developed.
Overall: I really hope this manga succeeds and comes up with some other ending to the story, because the way they have done things, there is no way it can follow the VN's ending. So I highly suggest you play that, instead of reading this manga.