Euphoria

Euphoria

Euphoria is a dark and twisted visual novel with plenty of explicit and over the top sex scenes. However, while it may seem like a pure nukige title, it also has a storyline that draws you in right from the start while continually going in unexpected directions. It’s definitely not a title for the faint of heart or easily offended, but if you can appreciate a good story and put up with some rather unsavory elements, then it’s worth checking out.

Gameplay: Very twisted and filled with plenty of unsavory stuff, but the story is also dark and compelling.

Graphics: Plenty of uncensored CGs, but the backgrounds are rather limited and there are no animations.

Sound: A dark and moody soundtrack and full voice acting for all the female characters

Dusk Diver 酉閃町

Dusk Diver 酉閃町

Take control of an ordinary girl who gains extraordinary powers and the ability to step through rifts in reality to battle vicious “Chaos Beasts.” Dusk Diver features the vibrant real-world setting of Ximending as well as it’s shadowy fictional counterpart Youshanding for players to explore. It’s a “Musou” style beat ’em up, so expect plenty of punching and kicking, but there’s also some downtime between missions for exploring Ximending, eating food and performing side quests. Despite some flaws, Dusk Diver is a very compelling game and definitely something for fans of the genre.

Gameplay: Combat can become repetitive, but overall the game is fun to play.

Graphics: The vibrant anime art style and unique setting for the game are both great.

Sound: Decent music and full Japanese as well as Mandarin voice acting

Gun Gun Pixies

Gun Gun Pixies

Gun Gun Pixies is a fan-service heavy third-person shooter where players get to infiltrate an all-girl dorm with a pair of pint-size pixies from another planet. It is a very niche title and makes no apologies for the copious amounts of ecchi content, but the story is actually very decent and running around as a tiny pixie in a world filled with giant girls can be fun. Unfortunately, the game can be a little repetitive and some areas, such as the controls, could do with improvements. Ultimately, if you are a fan of the genre and enjoy the fan-service, then you might be able to overlook the flaws and have fun with his one.

Gameplay: Fun, but it can be more frustrating than challenging at times due to the controls.

Graphics: The visuals are decent and the girls look great, but the environments are very limited.

Sounds: Average music, but the voices and sound effects are good

9-nine-:Episode 2

9-nine-:Episode 2

9-Nine-: Episode 2 features more of the vibrant art and excellent writing that was featured in the first installment. However, it’s not quite a sequel as it instead focuses on a different heroine compared to episode 1. This can be a little annoying for players who want to uncover all the mysteries instead of just learning more about the different heroines. The game is also rather short and left us wanting more, but this is mostly due to the great character dialog and superb translation. Despite some questionable elements 9-Nine-: Episode 2 is a great visual novel and we have no qualms recommending the entire series to fans of the genre.

Gameplay: Features a lot more humor compared to episode one and the writing is still superb.

Graphics: The art is detailed and vibrant, although a lot of the character sprites and backgrounds are reused.

Sound: Excellent voice acting, but most of the background tunes are the same

Saya no Uta ~ The Song of Saya (2019)

Saya no Uta ~ The Song of Saya (2019)

The new remastered version of Saya no Uta ~ The Song of Saya updates this classic visual novel without messing with the things that have made it so popular. It is still as disturbing as ever, although Steam players will have to spring for the adult patch to get the full experience. The original artwork looks great in high definition and the new engine means it’s no longer a hassle to try and run the game on modern hardware. It’s also good to see that the already great translation has been polished even more. If you can handle disturbing content, and enjoy the genre, then we cannot recommend Saya no Uta ~ The Song of Saya enough.

Gameplay: Not a lot of choices, but the story is so good that you won’t mind.

Graphics: Still very disturbing, especially when played uncensored.

Sound: The soundtrack is excellent and so is the voice acting

The Witch’s Love Diary

The Witch’s Love Diary

The Witch’s Love Diary is a unique visual novel that has plenty of stories to tell and a unique way of telling these stories. It offers quite a lengthy tale and the pace is somewhat on the slow side, but it is definitely worth the read. It also doesn’t skimp on routes for any of its characters, even the minor ones. Add to that beautiful visuals, along with a great soundtrack and you have yourself a visual novel that is worth investing some time in.

Gameplay: Not a lot of meaningful choices, but the story manages to remain captivating to the end.

Graphics: Beautiful character designs and detailed backgrounds.

Sound: Features a great soundtrack and top-notch voice acting

The Princess, the Stray Cat, and Matters of the Heart

The Princess, the Stray Cat, and Matters of the Heart

The Princess, The Stray Cat, and Matters of the Heart is a charming and humorous visual novel that features a large cast of interesting characters. It opens with the protagonist, Nora Handa, encountering a girl claiming to be a princess of the netherworld and events just spiral further out of control from there. After his encounter with this newcomer, Nora has to decide whether he is falling in love with her or if his heart beats for one of the three other girls in his life. Of course, the fact that he has been cursed to change into a cat whenever he is kissed also complicates matters further. Overall, this is a great visual novel, but there are some gaping holes where all the adult content has been removed.

Gameplay: Completing all four of the routes in the game is a lengthy process, but very enjoyable.

Graphics: The artwork is really good, but it is a pity that all of the adult content had to be removed.

Sound: Full voice acting for the characters along with a huge and varied soundtrack

Shin Megami Tensei: Persona

Shin Megami Tensei: Persona

For fans of the series that missed this game the first time around, this is a great chance to see where it all started. Newer players might find the game to be a bit dated, but it fits the hand-held perfectly and makes for a very enjoyable experience. It’s not without its flaws, however, so be sure you have a lot of patience before you attempt to finish this one.

Gameplay: Feels a bit dated compared to modern games, but is still very playable.

Graphics: Very nice cut-scenes but the game graphics really show their age.

Sound: Revamped audio brings this side of the game up to date

Star Ocean: Second Evolution

Star Ocean: Second Evolution

A good game, although not as good as the first title. It will still provide you with hours of challenging and entertaining gameplay so if you are a RPG fan then this still comes highly recommended.

Gameplay: The epitome of old-skool.

Graphics: Pretty much the same as the first game which isn’t a bad thing.

Sound: Pretty standard fare

When Our Journey Ends – A Visual Novel

When Our Journey Ends – A Visual Novel

When Our Journey Ends follows the adventure of Mariko, a high school student who ends up stranded at an unfamiliar train station on her way home one day. She quickly discovers that it is not an ordinary place and learns about the spirits that dwell there. This visual novel features a unique graphical style, with lovely animated backgrounds, but it is rather short and the main story is not as fleshed out as much as we would have liked. It does feature a number of side stories that take place after the main story, but even with these the game is over way too soon.

Gameplay: Short and lacking in meaningful choices.

Graphics: Interesting character spirits and beautiful animated backgrounds.

Sound: English voice acting for all the characters and a very decent soundtrack