Sakura Santa
Gameplay 7
Graphics 8
Sound 6

Sakura Santa doesn’t bring anything new to the table in terms of story or gameplay, but it is a lighthearted and enjoyable title. Like all Sakura titles it is a little short and lacking in depth for our tastes, but the art is great and features no shortage of fanservice. Players looking for something different from Winged Cloud will be disappointed, but everyone who enjoys the Sakura titles will like this festive themed one.

Gameplay: A typical Sakura title, so fans will know exactly what to expect.

Graphics: Only a few girls and handful of locations, but everything looks great.

Sound: No voice acting and the music is rather unremarkable

Summary 7.0 Good
Gameplay 0
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Accept
Summary 0.0 Terrible

Sakura Santa

Developer: Winged Cloud | Publisher: MangaGamer | Release Date: 2015| Genre: Visual Novel | Website: n/a | Purchase: Steam / MangaGamer

Sakura Santa, the latest release from Winged Cloud, introduces us to Koji. He is facing his first Christmas alone after moving away from home to attend the University of his dreams. Koji has no problem attaining good grades, but making new friends proved to be a little harder than he anticipated. Tired of spending time along in his apartment Koji goes for a walk that leads him to a local shrine. With nothing to lose he makes an offering and wishes for someone to spend Christmas with in order to banish his loneliness. Much to his surprise Koji finds that his wish appears to be granted as within no time three beautiful women are all vying for his time. It is then up to players to decide who Koji will spend his time with in the days leading up to Christmas, a task made harder by the fact that all three girls are quite beautiful.

With eight visual novels and a clicker game released on Steam already Winged Cloud has built up a reputation for rapid releases. The Sakura titles always feature plenty of eye candy, but unfortunately the storylines often take a backseat to the fan service. Players looking for something new from Winged Cloud now that they have partnered with MangaGamer will have to wait for the release of Sakura Dungeon though as Sakura Santa is a typical Sakura title.

Each day in the game players are provided with three choices representing the three girls Koji can spend time with. Akina is a feisty fox spirit who guards the shrine where Koji made his wish and she loves nothing more than teasing the protagonist. Then there is Itsumi, a childhood friend of Koji who is now working at a cafe in the same city as him. Koji lost contact with her after she moved away during childhood, but the two were very close and it is clear that she still has feelings for him. Last up is Santa! No, not the big bellied, bearded patriarch of Christmas, but his innocent and adorable daughter. Santa is as clumsy as she is beautiful, but quickly wins over Koji with her cuteness. Each of these girls feature a couple of their own scenes and an ending, but there is also a fourth route where Koji spends time with all of them together.

With its small cast and handful of locations Sakura Santa can be completed rather quickly. It is a pity that the storylines were not fleshed out more as the characters actually had a lot of potential. There is definitely more to each one than meets the eyes, but due to the short scenarios even big issues are resolved very quickly. This gives the game a bit of a rushed feel, which is a pity. It took us about three hours to complete all four routes through the game, which is about par for the course as far as Sakura titles are concerned.

Despite an abundance of fan service Sakura Santa does not contain any actual sexual content. Despite the lack of sex scenes or outright nudity the three girls regularly end up in compromising situations where they bare plenty of flesh. Some of these scenes are quite funny and Koji is a self-confessed pervert with no qualms about ogling girls, so he takes full advantage of these situations. This makes for an interesting change from the typical visual novel lead who develops a nosebleed at any sign of naked skin!

As with most Winged Cloud releases the visuals in Sakura Santa are top notch. The girls all look very cute and get to show off all their curves in the CGs. Unfortunately, the game features no animations, which makes it appear dated compared to titles like the NEKOPARA series. There are also only a handful of backgrounds, but these are all well drawn and detailed. For such a holiday themed title we were expecting the music to be a bit more festive, but all of the tunes sound like standard visual novel fare. None of the audio tracks are bad, but on the other hand there isn’t a single tune that really stands out as catchy or special in any way. Sakura Santa also does not feature any type of voice acting for any of the characters. With such a small cast it would have been nice for the girls to be voiced.

Overall Sakura Santa is a fairly typical Winged Cloud release, so fans should already know exactly what to expect. For a game where you can fall in love with Santa’s daughter the story is surprisingly touching in places, but don’t expect too much from the writing. Anyone looking for adult content can also skip Sakura Santa as the couple of ecchi in the game never crosses over into hentai. However, the Sakura series has always been driven by fanservice, so it would be unfair to criticize it for delivering more of what people expect.

System Requirements

  • OS: Windows XP
  • Processor: 1.2 GHz Pentium 4
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 1280 x 720
  • DirectX: Version 9.0c
  • Storage: 200 MB available space
  • OS: 10.6+
  • Processor: Any 64 bit processor
  • Memory: 1 GB RAM
  • Graphics: 1280 x 720
  • Storage: 200 MB available space
  • OS: 1.2 GHz Pentium 4
  • Processor: 1 GB RAM
  • Memory: 200 MB RAM
  • Graphics: 1280 x 720

Related posts

Guilty Gear X

Guilty Gear X

It is a pleasant surprise to see the Guilty Gear series appear on PC and with the right setup this game is a blast to play. Gameplay is solid although the last boss is one of the cheapest I've seen in a while. The lack of a story mode is also a downside but if you like your fighting games deep and don't mind getting your ass kicked then this is the game for you. 2D fighting games doesn't get much better than this on PC. Gameplay: More accessible than the last game but also has a lot of depth if you stick with it. Graphics: It would have been nice if the resolution could be increased but the game still looks good. Sound: Good music but muddy sound effects.

Sakura Spirit

Sakura Spirit

Sakura Spirit features some very nice visuals, but despite an interesting setup the plot never really goes anywhere. The lack of animations or poses are also very noticeable, although the CGs are very good. The nudity that is included in the game definitely leans more towards the ecchi side of the scale and not hentai, which might be a letdown for fans of the genre. There are better visual novels available, but hopefully Winged Cloud learns from their mistakes, as there are not many Western developers who bother making these titles. Gameplay: The story is rather short and not very engaging. Graphics: Very detailed and features nice character designs, but the amount of outfits and poses are lacking. Sound: The soundtrack is nice, but the game features no speech.

A Kiss for the Petals – Remembering How We Met

A Kiss for the Petals - Remembering How We Met

Remembering How We Met is the latest entry in the A Kiss For The Petals franchise and gives English players a chance to see what all the fuss is about. It is an all ages title, so rather tame compared to other entries in the series, but this also broadens its appeal. Players looking for a sweet and romantic yuri title should definitely not miss out on this one. Gameplay: There are no choices as this is a kinetic novel. Graphics: Restricted to a 4:3 ratio, but still looks very good. Audio. Japanese voice acting along with some very nice background music.

Project Temporality

Project Temporality

Although the time manipulation elements have been seen in other games before, Project Temporality manages to impress with clever puzzles and rewarding gameplay. There is also a deeper story lurking behind all the puzzle solving for players interested enough to delve deeper. The game challenges you to carefully plan ahead, but because you can simply rewind time to rectify mistakes it rarely becomes frustrating. Gameplay: Challenges you to think in four dimensions and rely on yourself to solve co-op based puzzles. Graphics: Somewhat lacking in visual variety, but the overall design and lighting effects are excellent. Sound: No voice acting, but some very nice music tracks.

The Reject Demon: Toko Chapter 0 — Prelude

The Reject Demon: Toko Chapter 0 — Prelude

The Reject Demon features an interesting cast of characters, twisting storyline and a great setting, which is all backed up by some very nice artwork. The soundtrack is also very good and, while short, it is definitely an enjoyable experience. It ends a little abruptly, but we are definitely looking forward to the future chapters. Gameplay: The story is enjoyable and the characters all very memorable. Graphics: The unique art style definitely sets the game apart. Sound: Features a variety of very nice tracks.

Monkey Tales Games

Monkey Tales Games

If you have kids aged between 7 and 11 who need some encouragement with their mathematics and logic then Monkey Tales might be just what you need. This collection of five games does a good job of disguising the educational content in a colorful and engaging package. It is obviously not meant for older players, but for younger kids it serves as a great educational tool and a nice introduction to proper gaming. Gameplay: A nice blend of education and entertainment. Graphics: Bright, colorful and with surprisingly good animations. Sound: Thankfully not too annoying.

Leave a comment

4 − two =