Visual Novels - because insomnia builds character.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Tea Society of a Witch

Firstly I apologize greatly on how long it has taken me to get off my lazy butt and write this review. This is an all-ages DVD port of FrontWing's 魔女のお茶会 but without the extra character added to the Dreamcast version of the game or even the full original cast. Even so, its quite worth 20$ I think.

Graphics - Very stylized "chibi"-esque character designs for all the "adult" characters. I found the art slightly disturbing/jarring at first but quickly adapted to it. The colors are clean and lively so this depends greatly on personal taste. The backgrounds don't really stand out. Sometimes the game will have a small overlayed 3D scene appeared the resolution compare-able to a Game Boy Advance. Pleasantly, there are a lot of lovely CGs throughout the game not just all concentrated to the endgame. 9/10

Music/SFX - The music is decent but not memorable, same for the vocal songs. There is a vocal song for each ending. Plenty of appropriate sound effects. 8/10

Voice Acting - Everyone but the protagonist is voiced. The voices are appropriate to character but not splendid. 8/10

Story - This is basically a romantic comedy. There is no grand plot connecting all the routes. TSoaW has a very typical dating-sim flow : get to know girl, go on date with girl, fix the girl's problems, confess love to girl, and finally end up going steady with the girl. It's fun, its cute, you'll smile, but don't expect it to move your heart. Unfortunately, two of the endings from the PC version were cut out. 7/10

System/Extras - Works on my JVC DVD player, Windows Media Player VLC (however OP movie will not play)and, my favorite, WinDVD (unlike other Hirameki games). I have not tested it with other programs besides the above but this is by far the most compatible AnimePlay game I have. Most people hate this format. I don't mind it. The pace of the DVD is set for luxurious reading time which may be too slow for most people (myself included). The game is simple enough you can remember passwords in your head unlike Hourglass of Summer or Phantom of Inferno. The DVD comes with a grayscale artbooklet but thats it for extras, no music mode or CG mode. 3/5

Overall - As long as you know what you are buying you will enjoy this game. If you want a serious literary masterpiece you are in the wrong place but if you can put up with AnimePlay and just want a fun love story or three go buy it.

Score - 35/45 - 78% - average

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