YMMV / Saya no Uta

  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Fuminori lives, and has been living, in the hell of his perceptions, for some time, and although he hates everything because it disgusts him, he goes a long while before even seriously considering doing anything wrong. And if Saya cures his madness, he suffers no ill effects. This raises some questions about Yosuke. He loses his mind after literal seconds and turns immediately to violence against the monsters (his wife and daughter) and quite violently and sadistically rapes the only other human he thinks is in the the world, who appears to him as a prepubescent girl. Considering he was a sensitive homebody who liked his peace and quiet, was he really just a calm everyman, or did Saya trip over a psychosis that had been bubbling under the surface and got more than they bargained for?
    • Alternatively, the only reason Fuminori DIDN'T lash out is because, as he was in the hospital, he was possibly restrained and had time to come to terms with his condition
  • Colbert Bump: The game received a humongous boost in sales after writer Gen Urobuchi worked on a certain magical girl anime, with him commenting after its airing that Saya no Uta was selling as much as a newly released title.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: There's a hilarious aside where Fuminori mentions Saya's favourite food; spare ribs.
  • Crowning Moment of Awesome: Ryoko gets one of these when she shoots and shatters the frozen Saya while an axe is sticking out of her shoulder, wearing a pretty damn impressive slasher smile on her face as she does so.
  • Crowning Music of Awesome: "Shoes of Glass", the ending theme for the first and third endings, is absolutely beautiful and epic.
  • Germans Love David Hasselhoff: Or Americans Love Saya no Uta, rather; Nitro+ CEO Takaki Kosaka seemed genuinely surprised at Anime Expo 2014 that this game had American fans. He also went on to say that the title didn't sell well when it was new, but since then, it has become one of the company's most consistently best-selling titles over a 10 year period.
  • Hell Is That Noise
    • "Scare Shadow", plus pretty much any music or other sound heard through Fuminori's perspective.
    • The warped voices of other people in Fuminori's perspective, and Saya's and (post-mutation) Yoh's warped voices in others' perspectives.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: One of the endings has Saya 'blooming' to turn things into meat-like monsters. Few years later, Hikaru Midorikawa voiced Zenya in Sweet Pool (another Nitro+ game, no less!) who can give birth to meat monsters.
  • Ho Yay
    • Yoh and Omi have quite a bit of subtext, if you squint. There's Omi's anger at Fuminori for being a jerk to Yoh, Yoh's and Omi's texting habits where the two share personal secrets, Yoh desperately wishing for Omi to be there whilst at Fuminori's house...
    • Yoh and Saya, though it's got hefty amounts of disturbing material: Saya essentially kidnaps Yoh, gropes her, tells her that "she's pretty" and her breasts are "so big and soft", before raping her while saying "[we'll] love you to death". While Saya does do this to give Fuminori "family", the text makes it clear she's also doing it because she's jealous of Yoh, even though she has no real reason to be, as Fuminori makes it clear he wants nothing to do with Yoh and everything to do with Saya. A slightly later scene also has Saya joyfully engaging in raping Yoh along with Fuminori, which may or may not count.
  • Idiot Plot: A rather large amount of drama in the plot is caused by rampant stupidity — see the entries under Too Dumb to Live.
  • It Was His Sled: One of the first things anyone hears about is that Saya is actually a monster.
  • Memetic Mutation: Mentioning this game on some image boards will result in spam of "Turns out your octopus girlfriend is a big nag with curlers in her tentacles, huh?"
  • Moral Event Horizon
    • Happens when Fuminori decides he's fine with eating human flesh.
      • Accentuated by the fact that, right before, Saya gives him the opportunity to cure his mental illness. He'll end up in a mental institution for all the murders, but least he won't be in a constant living hell anymore. Refusing that marks the point when Fuminori officially discards his humanity.
      • Some would put it a little later, when Fuminori brutally rapes Yoh. It's not his first heinous act, but some of his actions before that were mostly in response to the really bad hand life had dealt him. Raping Yoh, though, that's a complete crossover into Blue and Orange Morality at best and pure sadism at worst. Especially since Saya altered her so he that sees her as a normal person, so he definitely has no excuse.
      • One of Fuminori's earlier actions — attempting to murder Koji, one of his best friends, just to get him out of the way — could also count.
    • Saya essentially kidnapping and then raping Yoh, before turning her into the same being Saya is, an action that causes the victim severe, unending pain. Saya does this not only for Fuminori, but out of baseless jealousy. The fact that this comes so soon after Saya herself is raped makes it plain stomach-churning.
      • An earlier scene of her altering Yosuke's brain as an experiment may also count.
    • Yosuke's sadistic rape of Saya. It makes his brutal death at Fuminori's hands pretty well-deserved.
  • Narm
    • As mentioned in the Funny Moments section, Koji's nightmare in one of the endings can be a little too silly to take seriously.
    • The sex scenes, thanks to the cheesy voice-acting, cliched and almost melodramatic description, as well as the weird expressions and anatomy.
    • Saya being raped by Yousuke, assuming you didn't find it horrible or frightening. The scene doesn't really do anything to further the plot (though the ones leading up to it do), and Saya's sudden helplessness feels cheapened by the fact that she's almost invincible in every other part of the story, to the point where it informs a major part of the climax.
  • Nightmare Fuel: Seeing everything in gorn-o-vision. An Eldritch Abomination seeking to convert humanity into its own kind. A formerly normal person slowly (or not) being Driven to Madness, cannibalism, murder, rape, and utter depravity by both of the above. A Fate Worse Than Death for at least one character, or even for every living human in one ending. There's definitely no shortage.
  • Nightmare Retardant: Realizing that one of the songs used from the game, Schizophrenia, was also used in a rather funny level in Talkhaus level contest played by raocow.
  • Paranoia Fuel: While the game exaggerates its effects, agnosia is a real disorder that, due to brain injury or neurological trauma, can distort a person's senses and perception in many different ways. Yikes.
  • Squick: ...Y'know, in case you didn't get the picture from reading the top of the main page. But even the premise only scratches the surface. It is in fact no hyperbole to say that the fact that Fuminori has sex with the obviously childlike Saya is the absolute least disturbing aspect of their relationship.
  • Tear Jerker: The whole damn game, really. The music contributes a great deal to this.
  • Unfortunate Implications: This liveblog points out a few, mainly regarding the game's depiction of mentally ill people, and how the gruesome actions of the two main protagonists are handled. Outside of that, there's quite a bit of misogyny regarding the handling of the female characters: Omi is Stuffed In The Fridge for drama and to motivate Koji, who dies in all endings; Yoh is a passive girl turned passive sex slave who is eventually brutally killed in two endings; Ryoko, the only competent and active woman, gets killed by contrivance in the third ending to up the body count; and Saya is motivated purely by her desire to reproduce and her devotion to her male lover, which gets a bit more unfortunate when you realize that she was an alien, who was most likely non-binary or otherwise without a concept of gender, who started regarding herself as female due to her desire for reproduction and love. And the fact that she's portrayed as a cute prepubescent girl for no real or practical reason.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: The game would really be a lot more touching if the two main characters weren't monstrous, monstrous people who are all too willing to throw away everyone else in the world for the sake of their "love", going from torture to cannibalism to attempted murder to horrific rape, even to people they once considered friends. There's only so much callousness one can write off with "horrific brain disorder", after all.
  • Vindicated by History: As stated above, Nitro+ CEO Takaki Kosaka was surprised about both the game's American fans and the fact that despite initial bad sales, it went up to become one of the best-selling Visual Novels in the company's history.
  • The Woobie
    • Yoh probably takes the cake: the poor girl undergoes heartbreak by her now-jerkass crush, loss of a very close friend that she becomes convinced is her fault, brutal rape, hideous torture and body horror, unending pain thanks to her new body, becoming a sex slave to two borderline sociopaths, before being brutally beaten to death by another close friend.
    • Fuminori's situation is pretty depressing, even if he is quite monstrous himself. He was an ordinary medical student before an accident wherein he lost both his parents and his sanity. Hit with a horrifying case of agnosia that turns his perception of the entire world into an Eldritch Location, his only solace and comfort is the company of a beautiful girl... who is in fact an Eldritch Abomination. Before he even has the opportunity to correct his condition, he has already eaten his former friend and murdered his neighbor.
    • Yosuke. Has a loving wife and a daughter, and paints in his spare time. He's practically the ideal family man. All seems right and blissful with his life... until Saya comes in.
    • Koji. He just wants to help his friend become normal again and he pretty much saved the world in one of the endings. His thanks? His friends are all dead and he can't sleep knowing there's more of Saya out there somewhere.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/YMMV/SayaNoUta