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[PS4/PS Vita] Norman’s Great Illusion Review

[PS4/PS Vita] Norman’s Great Illusion Review
  • On August 27, 2020

Norman’s Great Illusion from Sometimes You and Civil Savages is a small indie game with a political twist. Learn more in our Norman’s Great Illusion review!


In Norman’s Great Illusion from Sometimes You and Civil Savages, which is described by the indie dev as a visual novel in which you will take on the role of an engineer, experiencing his life for a year, while social tensions around him are on the rise. You will wake up every morning, get dressed, sit down to have breakfast with your family, drive to the office, complete your tasks, drive back home, change your clothes, and go to bed. That’s the cycle you’ll experience during a year in the life of this engineer, but you won’t be playing through every single day, since the game will jump forward in chunks.

Norman's Great Illusion Review - 1


For the driving, you will need to press the X button to stop a moving slider while it goes over a colored part of a meter, but only when it’s turned green. This happens once the slider has moved past the colored part and moves back towards it. If you press the X button and stop the slider while the colored part is blue, or when the slider is going over a grey part, then the car will suffer some damage. You can see how many mistakes you’ve made by checking the meter on the left side of the screen. Fail too many times, and you’ll have to pay a hefty sum to repair the car.

Norman's Great Illusion Review - 2

Your work as an engineer will have you completing many mathematical calculations. Each of the different tasks for you to complete will be displayed at the center of the screen, and you will need to act fast to be able to solve each one before the time limit is up. You will need to be quick as you move a cursor over the numbers on the right side of the device, pressing the X button to select the right number – or numbers – to solve each equation. End the day while solving all equations without making any mistakes, or without making more than two mistakes, and you will get a bonus on your pay. Make more than five mistakes, and the daily goal won’t be met, and you will be penalized for it.

Norman's Great Illusion PS4 Review - 4


Along the way, you will be presented with different choices to make, which will have an effect on which of the seven different endings you will get. You can decide to side with your fellow coworkers, with the company, with the people of the city, with the government, or a mix of this and that. Some of your decisions could end up rewarding you with some extra money, while others could make you say, be late to work, which will earn you a penalty and make you miss the extra bonus for the day.

Norman's Great Illusion PS Vita Review - 3


As for the trophies, Norman’s Great Illusion has a full trophy list with a Platinum trophy for you to add to your collection. The game features different endings, and you’ll have to at least reach three of them to be able to unlock a pair of trophies for getting your first ending and for reaching three different endings. The other trophies are obtained for making specific choices along the way, as well as for your performance behind the wheel and at work, crunching those numbers – or failing hard.


Norman’s Great Illusion is a weird game with a pair of very monotonous mini-games that are used to try and bring some variety between the different choices you can make in the game. One could say the mini-games are a good match for the monotony one might encounter in life with the same daily commute and a repetitive job with no one, but one could also say that it does not make for a fun game. Norman’s Great Illusion is out now on PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita, with each version being available separately for a low $4.99 price.

This Norman’s Great Illusion is based on PlayStation 4 and PS Vita copies provided by Sometimes You.

Review Overview

Monotonous adventure with some interesting philosophical premises