Shallow and pedantic, sure, but the worst thing about this game is that you play Julian, who has absolute no character whatsoever. In the short time I got to know him, what did I find out about him? He's resentful of his job, 27 years old, single, he wants to really get laid, has a very stereotypical view of Japanese girls.
Oh yes, he likes to quote Byron. Isn't he special? Honestly, every time someone tells me they like Byron, I wonder if they only say that because they think it'll make them sound smarter.
He's not that likable. In a game that's all about persona, you have to like the person you're playing, or at least sympathize.
Ironically, it might be that the lonely angry aging man-child demographic is just the demographic who won't find "games are art" and denounce this piece without listening to how it speaks of their internal struggles.
A swing, and a miss.
Further more, the game, despite offering the will to take control of Julian's subconciousness, you are limited in what you can do. You are still guided by the developer's vision. What if I don't want to drink? What if I want to call up my buddies right when I realize she's 20 minutes late and probably not coming? What if I, as the subconcious, don't want to be some pushover white guy. You are guided, you are not in control for, as much as you are the subconcious, Julian will monologue internally, "I SHOULD DRINK SOME WINE, JUST DRINK IT." At this point, am I even in control?
A big swing to a slider.
And finally, here you are, talking about Meiko, like her only state of being is being a "Twenty-year-old Japanese girl," emphasis on "Japanese" because that is her entire existence. Orientalism abound, I can't in good concious really endorse some dung-show f-boy that's just horny for some Asian exotique.
Nothing but air, and a strike out.
Also, no steam trading cards or achievements? What is this, a game for babies?