Pretty Girls Four Kings Solitaire
The pretty girls are back, and this time they are challenging players to the Solitaire-style game of Four Kings. The goal is to clear each level by placing all the cards on the table in the specified order. However, to do so successfully requires some strategic thinking as it is possible to run out of valid moves and lose. Success means unlocking new outfits for the eight girls in the game.
The cast of characters for Pretty Girls Four Kings Solitaire includes Kaoru, the sports instructor, Yoko, the otaku-like college student, and even Farina, who is an elven princess knight. There’s also a cat and rabbit girl for fans of kemonomimi. This game also features multiple difficulty settings, ranging from very easy to very hard, but players must complete enough levels on all the difficulties to unlock all of the costumes.
While the game is played with a traditional deck of cards, the rules can take some getting used to for anyone not familiar with Four Kings Solitaire, which is also known as Calculation or Broken Intervals. However, as we mentioned earlier, it also has more room for skilled players to play strategically instead of relying on luck. The interface is divided into a section for the deck of cards, your hand cards, the field cards, and the table. The girl you have selected as an opponent is also shown on the left side of the screen, where she will occasionally say something in Japanese depending on how well you are playing. Cards that are turned over from the deck become your hand, and these can be put on the field or the table. Ideally, you want to fill up the four columns on the table in the sequence shown for each. However, the order of each is different, so the first column has to be filled sequentially (A, 2, 3, 4, etc.) while the others have alternating patterns.
Thankfully, the color or suit of the cards don’t matter, but the game does have a few other rules to up the challenge. Once you’ve placed a card on the table, it cannot be moved again, and only the top cards on the field can be transferred to the table. In addition, field cards cannot be moved to another pile on the field. This means that players must carefully evaluate where they want to place each card or risk it becoming “stuck” beneath the wrong card. Greater difficulties provide players with fewer piles on the field, complicating matters further. It takes a while to get used to the rules, but once grasped, the game becomes a lot of fun.
Pretty Girls Four Kings Solitaire does provide players with a bit of help in the form of “Expose,” “Replenish,” and “Shuffle.” These three functions have limited uses and add some time to your clock, but they can be a lifesaver if you are stuck. Expose adds ten seconds but replenishes cards from the deck until you have five cards in your hand. Move has a twenty-second penalty but automatically moves cards from the field to the table using piles with the least number of cards. Finally, Shuffle can only be used once and will penalize you with 60 seconds but returns all the cards in the field to the deck. The game features achievements for not using the help function, so it’s better to not rely on them too much, but they are handy in a pinch. The game also has leaderboards based on the times used to clear rounds.
Fans of the Pretty Girls series should know what to expect from the visuals, and while the game doesn’t feature any lewd content, there are a few borderline risqué outfits for some of the more well-endowed girls. The interface is very straightforward, and the game also features a variety of backgrounds that range from woods and caves to shopping districts and restaurants. These are also available in the “Dressing Room” section, another staple of the series. Here players set up dioramas with up to six girls by choosing the backgrounds, outfits, and facial expressions. Once again, all the voice lines in the game are Japanese, and unfortunately, no translations are provided, so players have to rely on facial expressions to discern whether the girls or happy or not with their actions. The handful of tunes in the game is pleasant and upbeat but mellow enough that they don’t become annoying after a few hours of playing.
Pretty Girls Four Kings Solitaire is the 15th title in the series, and at this point, Zoo Corporation knows precisely what their fans want and how to deliver. The anime girls are obviously not going to be to everyone’s taste, but the gameplay is solid and surprisingly addictive. As with other Pretty Girls games, it doesn’t take long to complete all the levels and earn all the achievements, but it is fun while it lasts.
- OS: Windows 8.1/10/11
- Processor: 2Ghz
- Memory: 2 GB RAM
- Graphics: DirectX Compatible video card with Pixel Shader 3.0 and Vertex Shader 3.0 support
- DirectX: Version 11
- Storage: 1 GB available space
- Sound Card: DirectX-compatible sound