Archive for the ‘Games Gone By’ Category:

Love Stories: Furry Shades of Gay (NSFW Going Back)

Content Warnings: M/M, D/s, anthro/furry, maid costumes, oral, anal, facial, degradation, spanking, bratting, open relationship, size difference, dubcon(?), masturbation

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The Sad Story Of Emmeline Burns (Going Back)

Source: Free
Price: Free
Where to Get It: Steam

At first, I had mixed impressions. A beautiful piano piece on the one hand, not making it clear the drawers are the menu, and the key the options on the other.

Hijinks!

The piano remains good. And the opening crawl… Don’t let it put you off. Yes, it’s all text, but being that fits. Toma has no good pictures for this. Why should she, when she feels off, isolated, and feeling like her core, her identity, was stolen via the simple fact her aunt named her baby with Toma’s mother’s desired name for her daughter. And it’s affected her self esteem, to the point where she, a beautiful young lady (and she is) feels plain, weird, uncomfortable to be around.

A kinetic novel (where one doesn’t choose, but simply experiences the story), it revolves around two people, both young: Toma and Emmeline, and the fateful meeting they have in a graveyard. And it’s an emotional ride, where I found myself tearing up at one phrase early on:

“Every person has a story, and there is not enough space on a single tombstone to say it.”

But the story is told, and I teared up several times. That, in and of itself, says a lot. I sometimes tear up at the weirdest things (Like the SST arrange of Space Harrier, of all things. No idea why), but I don’t often do it overall…

Emmeline is smooth as warm butter…

But Toma’s story, and Emmeline’s struck a chord. They both loved a girl, and, in the end, they both got the relationships they wanted, and resolved, at least partly, the histories that plagued them.

You’d think that was a massive spoiler, but no. The details matter. The very British nature of the game matters, the small things matter. Just like a light brush of the hand, or a stammered set of words.

The Sad Story of Emmeline Burns is free, is hella gay, and it made me almost cry. If you want that experience, and don’t mind it being a kinetic novel… Go give it a go.

Oh, and the gallery is in the book, and the music box’s function is obvious.

And so we close our tale, the biscuits and milk all eaten, the night drawing in. Sweet dreams, one and all…

Witches X Warlocks (Going Back)

Source: Free, Cashmoneys for the DLC
Price: Free (£4.79 for an extra romance route and extra eye candies)
Where to Get It: Steam

Omigosh. This is so hecking wholesome. So hecking wholesome, in fact, that I’ve said hecking twice.

Okay, okay, let’s get into it. Rawr.

Spells! So many spells! Learn… Well, enough to pass, and enough to romance your chosen sweetie…

Witches x Warlocks is a visual novel with some resource/raising elements, in that you need potions to cast and learn spells from the four potential sweethearts, and you have times of the day to choose to make potions with one of said sweethearts, learn spells from them, and work part time to buy potions. And, naturally, learn about your four potential sweethearts, and romance the heck out of them as The Matchmaker of Dwimmermere, the Halloween Town!

…Who’s also a witch who completely forgot to study, and realises exams are in a week’s time. Which is why you’re doing all this. Whoops.

So, aesthetically… Everyone is cute. The visuals are clear. The music is nice, and my only (minor) gripe with the VA is that, no matter what gender presentation and pronouns you pick, your protag has exactly the same voice. Otherwise, everyone is characterful, and there’s just enough VA to get more of a sense of their characters.

SCREEEAAAAM!!! <3

Speaking of characters… I love them all, and if time actually permitted, I would smooch all of them. There’s Damion, the frankensteinian cutie, Zero, the gruff poltergeist who, nonetheless, is warm beneath that, Lawrence, the grumpy werewolf, and Carmilla, the wry, seductive vampiress who nonetheless hides some pain in her past. I want the best for all of them, and this is a hallmark of a good dating sim: You want to date them all.

And then there’s something I enjoy most of all: This is a game that wants to be played. So long as you have at least 8 of every potion at the end, and a selection of spells that cover most situations, you will be fiiiine, and the full selection of a given character’s skills goes a long way, and, y’know… Gives you more chances to get to know them, and closer to giving them a big sloppy kiss.

So yes, Witches x Warlocks is fun, it’s wholesome, it’s cute, and it tugs at my heart in the right ways. Give it a go.

Now, what we need are more queer villainess isekai otome visual novels. And manga. And anime. I won’t shut up about this, you can’t make me.

Hades (Going Back)

Source: Supporter Gift
Price: £19.49 (£7.19 soundtrack)
Where To Get It: Steam

Supergiant do it again. They keep doing it. I’m enjoying a game about a rebellious young adult, Zagreus, son of Hades, snarking and battling his way from his home at the lowest depths of Hades, trying to escape, in essence, a shitty family situation.

He’s right. I have no urge to consensually bully Dusa, who is cute.

Its aesthetics are gorgeous (God, so many fucking hunks!) Its progression feels natural, to the point where I knew where I was going, knew what I was doing, and was fine with dying over and over again, because I knew my grind would be rewarded. Its characters, even the grumpy and overbearing dad Hades, charmed me.

And thus, one of those times I hate is upon me, because I can’t say anything bad, so I’m struggling with what the hell else to say.

Okay, so, Hades is an action roguelike, in which, as noted, Zagreus, son of Hades, is attempting to escape, with the aid of his step-mother Nyx, the Olympian Gods, and a few other notable figures, including the most relaxed and friendly incarnation of Sisyphus I’ve ever seen. You start with one weapon, a sword, make your way as far as you can, get your ass beaten down, and come back for more, wading out of the pool of blood that forms the entryway to Zagreus’ home as he bitterly snarks or swears payback.

For the reason that it’s ever so cheesable, I love the spear. But every weapon is, honestly, appealing in this game.

He will escape. Because he cannot die, so he keeps trying, because he knows he can do it. And, as he does, he gets more powerful. He befriends various people, like Dusa, the disembodied medusa head maid of Hades’ abode (She’s so cute!), or Dionysus, who reminds me so damn much of Zaphod Beeblebrox that I find myself smiling. A chill dude, I like him.

Anyway, yes, the progression is natural, the sound design great, the VA good…

Look, I can’t keep saying nice things, so I will end with this: If you like action roguelikes, then yes, this is a good one to pick. It’s easy on beginners, it’s accessible (alas, never perfectly, for it is twitchy, but still), and, as mentioned, the grind feels less like a grind, and more like a natural state of affairs.

It’s criminal how hunky, laid back, and smooth talking he is. CRIMINAL, I TELL YOU!

It’s good stuff.

Call me, Dionysus, we had a fun time! xoxo

Atelier Lydie and Suelle: The Alchemists and the Mysterious Paintings (Going Back)

Source: Cashmoneys (My wallet, it weeps. And I ignore it)
Price: £49.99 (Season pass £62.99 (GASP), 21 DLCs ranging from £2.09 to £7.19)
Where To Get It: Steam

Well, since I gave in to the “dangerous to my wallet” urge to get hold of an Atelier game, let’s do a going back on it…

The Atelier JRPG series is, essentially, about cute alchemists and their rise, their personal arcs, and the people that surround them. It’s a series heavy on crafting, with turn based battles, and, sometimes, time limits to the game’s story which mean replaying things on NG+. Yay.

He has, no joke, that bow-chikka-wow. As befits such a handsome devil

Thankfully, Lydie and Suelle is not one of those, being a pretty relaxing game about two young ladies (dorks), their attempts to become the greatest alchemists (and, keep in mind, this game has protagonists from the previous two, Atelier Sophie and Atelier Firis, appearing) in Merveille, in the kingdom of Adalet.

It’s good stuff, with nice, light music, cool characters, and a slow burn to the plot. That may be a turnoff for some folks, that the stakes don’t get raised until the second act, with minimal foreshadowing before that, but honestly… It was nice.

I shouldn’t call this poor man, unable to move on, a trash dad. But at times… Yeah, he’s a trash dad…

It was nice to avoid the plot for a while and just craft things. It was nice to enjoy all the fun side content. And funnily enough, that desire to see more of the characters (even the tsundork Lucia, or Liane and her cheery, yet overbearing love for her sister) actually helped, because this is a game that rewards you for seeing all of the plot, doing all the things. And it does it pretty organically, for the most part. The main story won’t progress until you want it to, and, while later items require later dungeons, the progression feels natural.

As to the combat? Well, it’s an interesting one, because, while Lydie and Suelle themselves are by no means weak, they’re still characters who rely on either their special abilities (which run out when you’re out of MP) or… The items they craft. And the game encourages the latter, while adding a nice little mechanical touch to emphasise this narrative. The characters who later join your party can, before a monster attacks, throw themselves in front of Lydie or Suelle, protecting them, while Lydie and Suelle have good synergies as support characters later on. I still kept Suelle, with her dual pistols (which she admits she demanded to be trained in because it looks cool) in the frontline pretty much throughout, but Lydie, in the backline, helped keep another character alive in rough fights.

You have to appreciate a boss called “Justrun-Foryourlife”, no?

They weren’t joking, either, he’s Givenme-Arunformymoney.

This has been my first experience with the Atelier series, and it’s left me with a good impression. Cuteness, a mostly relaxing loop, slowly rising stakes with a lot of character moments, with interesting characters to fit? Yeah, sign me up for more, ta!

Cute alchemists should rule the world. Send tweet.