The dialogue in this game isn’t really realistic however they’re believable enough to not really matter in the end. I like how easy it is to follow every girl except Monika and how paying attention to their dialogue really helps when creating something to appeal to them. Each moment in the game felt really great to occur on the first time and actually deleting Monika at the end produced a very nice ending which just leaves the player with a poem on the main menu and the only other option to leave. It really feels very great.
In order to achieve the best ending you need to unlock every single CG (character graphic, a term used when the main screen changes from the normal view to an image of one specific girl) before Sayori dies. This of course means resetting a whole lot and then playing through the rest of the game. This is why the skip button exists.
Even though the game deletes your save files so you can’t go back to erase what you’ve done the skip feature is very helpful for when you want to go through everything again and want to avoid repeated lines. This allows you to change the routes easily and quickly even though it feels nothing matters at that point.
But does nothing matter? I’d say it only does if you give up on the story. By following routes and doing things slightly different you will of course get a lot of different dialogue which will make you feel better about a certain character and improve your relationship and it’s pretty nice to see. It doesn’t change much however it’s nice to have that feeling that you’re making a difference. To be honest I thought the way to get Monika would be to favour a different person on each day and then go to help her but it unfortunately ends the same way regardless.
The biggest problem in dating sims which I’ve played is the idea that all the characters’ routes can be found simply by looking them up in a book, and I really hate that notion. I have no idea how to fix it but I think it’s kind of immersion breaking to find out online. However in this game that’s not really a problem since there’s only one route with many different detours, whilst you can get two confessions they don’t really matter at all. This isn’t the most satisfying kind of dating sim but I think it forces the player to engage and pay more attention to the story/journey and not worry about the ending.
People have come back from this game with shock and fear, kind of scared by it. I didn’t find this to be true for me, something about the crazy glitches and sound effect made the moments less impactful for me. I may have been far more disturbed if Sayori died and it was treated like a normal part of the game instead of an error. But that might just be me, I’ve read things like Berserk which feature far worse violence and gore so I may just be pretty resilient to it.