New Releases (6/17/2016)
Well my friends, the summer rush has arrived. I’m not even kidding on that as the current list only covers the last two weeks or so of new releases and doesn’t even begin to cover what will be launched over the next few days and weeks. So, there will most likely be another New Releases post in the next few days to cover the rest of the current new releases.
With that said, we start off the week with a prequel! The Indonesian group Kidalang had a very successful 2015 thanks to An Octave Higher which won several awards and critical acclaim. Returning to this world would always be an option for this group and the only question would be how. One Small Fire At A Time is a prequel to the events of AOH and puts the players into the shoes of one of the predecessor’s most vicious antagonists. TO THE SYNOPSIS:
In Overture, magic can cure all diseases, but not those of the mind. Society looks down on those whose illnesses are incurable by magic, and these “lunatics” must stay in madhouses until they recover their sanity—if they ever do. But no one has a worse madness than 13-year-old Janis—not even those who long for death, or live in constant fear, or see and hear the unreal—because in a city where everyone can use magic, Janis alone can’t. “Magic Deficiency Disorder,” they call it.
Her disability makes Janis an easy target for bullying, but she still fights back despite always losing. One day, she is saved from her bullies by Aidan Woolf, a powerful mage and police commander. In Woolf, Janis finds a father figure, but the commander didn’t come to her madhouse just for a visit. He has a mission.
One Small Fire At A Time is available for direct download on MangaGamer or on Steam for $9.95.
From Indonesia, we go to France where the group Nova Box has put together something truly eye-catching. Along the Edge is a familiar supernatural tale: a young woman discovers that her family roots are steeped in mysticism. But what got my attention for it is the artwork, which is stunning to say the least. The game’s aesthetic is planned to be its main attraction as the look of the world, and the main character, changes depending on your choices.I had the opportunity to play a demo of the game a while ago and if you’re thinking about purchasing the game, I’d give that a read first just to get an idea of its pros and cons. Either way, I hope everyone gives the team a chance and looks into this gorgeous game. Now, to the synopsis:
Daphné is at a dead-end. She’s unsatisfied by her personal and professional life. So, when she inherits an old family house in a remote part of the country, she jumps at the opportunity to start anew. Does she decide to embrace her legacy or does she hang to her old way of life?
Along the Edge is available on Itch.Io for $9.99.
After the release of Koihime Enbu, I voiced my hope that more visual novels would mix in elements from fighting games: one of my preferred gaming genres. Thankfully, the Cherry Tree High series answered the call with the latest installation of their popular franchise using a card-based battle system. So, it doesn’t hit the nail exactly on the hit, but it gets enough right to at least scratch that particular itch. To the (very simple) synopsis:
Class is in session, and today we’re getting ready to rumble! Buckle up for the high stakes 3v3 matches of Cherry Tree High! Pick your team of three elite female warriors-in-progress to train up in a winner-takes-all card-based battle system! Climb to the top of the ranks, cause if you don’t pay attention you’ll either tap, or snap! Cherry Tree High follows your team’s pursuits as they grow their skills over the tough school season. These girls aren’t just catty, they are downright lethal, so don’t get on their wrong side or you’ll never be able to go home and be a family man.
Cherry Tree High Girl’s Fight! is available on Steam for $12.99.
Winter Wolves has had a busy year so far with the release of Planet Stronghold: Colonial Defense and C-14 Dating. There are several other projects on the to-do list and while reports are that Colonial Defense’s sales weren’t as strong as the group wanted, hopefully the rest of the year will be more commercially beneficially. One step forward could be with their latest title Heirs and Graces: a yaoi dating sim in a more fantastical setting. Here is the synopsis:
Marcel knows two things about his biological father: One, Lord Sandor abandoned him and his mother leaving them to live a of poverty. Two, he shouldn’t want anything to do with the man. Despite this knowledge, Marcel applies for a job as Lord Sandor’s servant in order to satisfy his curiosity about the father he never knew. The idea is to get a glimpse and go, but things become more complicated than Marcel initially planned when Lord Sandor recognizes him and makes an offer.
If Marcel can prove that he is worthy, Lord Sandor will name Marcel his heir. It all sounds a little to good to be true, but Marcel is willing to give it a chance – for now.
Heirs and Graces is available on the Winter Wolves website for $19.99.
Okay…hear me out on this one.
Yes, this looks like every ecchi/fanservice title I’ve ever stomped on this website and yes the story sounds pretty pedestrian at best, however at some point I’m going to review Burokku Girls: ANOTHER fanservice-y title from this exact same team. And without spoiling much here, we’re in for a handful of surprises from that review…someone would say more than a handful. Now, that doesn’t mean that Time Tenshi 2 will be a good game, all it means is that we should give it a bit of rope to work with. That said, let’s look at the synopsis:
Rose and Kyo – the Time Tenshi (Time Angels) – are joined by new recruit Tessa on their voyages through history, powered by the work of Tensai Shiro, the genius inventor behind the Time Window: mankind’s first functioning time machine. Time travel is fraught with danger and still largely undiscovered, and until recently only females were allowed to go back into the past. The powerful forces of their journeys also seem to have some surprising effects on their bodies in certain areas!
But there’s a problem. Chrontek, a sinister organisation that somehow managed to access the Time Window, is endlessly tampering with the flow of time as they try to rewrite history. Only the Time Tenshi stand in their way to prevent catastrophic changes in the past from affecting the present – or even the future. And when Chrontek stumble across a mysterious, ancient power in history, they unwittingly unleash a dire peril on the future…
Well, if you’re so inclined, Time Tenshi 2 is available on Steam for $9.99.
Continuing on the current trend, we have a pretty interesting case with this one. Elisa the Innkeeper is currently on Kickstarter and still has some time to go before wrapping up. The campaign is for more polished experience: focusing on the Presentation and Technical end of the production. In order to help sell their concept, Neoclassic Games released the prequel of Elisa onto Steam and direct download. So, what would this even be? Beta? Demo? Either way, let’s see what the big deal is! (Pun intended?)
Our visual novel introduces the story of Elisa, a beautiful owner of an inn, struggling with the amorous proposal of honorable Knights, high born Princes and rich Merchants. It will be the Player to decide Elisa’s fate and his/her choices may even influence her destiny for the better or the worse.
We all know what we’re getting into with this one right? Of all of the investments Sekai Project has made, one of the wisest has to have dealt with this beloved title. Those who know CLANNAD are already anticipating great things from this anthology. For everyone else? Here’s the synopsis:
Delve further into the world of CLANNAD and experience the stories beyond the original visual novel adventure. Known as CLANNAD Hikari Mimamoru Sakamichi de in Japan, this collection of linear side stories allows you to explore and experience new sides and twists to your favorite characters from the little town of Hikarizaka. These are the stories which are not explored in either the visual novel or in the anime adaptation.
Originally released on the PSP handheld platform, this all new Steam release collects all the side story chapters and features high resolution assets at 1280×960 and in English for the very first time.
CLANNAD Side Stories is available on Steam for $19.99.
Every now and then, a few titles just grab your attention. You’re not sure what they are about or even what it is about them that warrants said attention, but you can’t shake your curiosity either. This week we had two from Itch.Io that fit the bill. The first is a click-and-point comedy Demetrious: The Big Cynical Adventure. Let’s see exactly what we’re getting into with this one, shall we?
Bjorn Thonen, a slob of an antique dealer living in Paris, is robbed one night after coming home drunk. Forced to conduct his own investigation with the help of his neighbor Sandra, he ends up involved in a murky, mysterious affair. Will these unlikely heroes be able to rise up and discover ancient secrets?
The store page promises a ‘quirky’ adventure with a heavy focus on investigation, puzzle solving and humor. If that’s up your alley, you can pick up The Big Cynical Adventure for $9.99 on Itch.Io.
On the opposite end of the fictional spectrum is a drama that seems to be inspired by titles such as Planterian and Wall-E. That doesn’t mean it is: those are just the works that came to my mind. Let’s see what Wanda: A Beautiful Apocalypse, has in store for us.
Wanda is a short and simple story about two lonely robots in a desolate, ruined world. Unlike many other ‘end-of-the-world’ games, Wanda is not about a tale of desperate survival but about finding companionship, love and hope in a wasteland.
I wouldn’t pick up this one without some tissue; just in case. Wanda is available on Itch.Io for $6.99.
Welcome back Mr. Holmes.
The Frogwards team has done exceptional work with the Sherlock Holmes mantle since The Testament of Sherlock Holmes back in 2012. Now fully in their stride, and with the rest of the world eager for more games that fall into the realm of interactive narrative, the group has seen a growth in popularity that is well-earned. Of course, a little series featuring a tall Briton with a voice as smooth as oiled silk might have also helped in that, but that doesn’t detract from the work of the developers in my book! So what has history’s greatest detective gotten himself into this time? Let’s find out.
What could have led Katelyn, Sherlock Holmes’s adoptive daughter, to 221B Baker Street? Did she uncover the dark truth about her father? And who is the charming clairvoyant who has moved in to 221C? Will Holmes’s implacable logic calm a whirlwind tearing at his emotions as he is confronted by fatherly love, occult rituals and a desire for vengeance? For the first time in his prestigious career, the most illustrious of detectives must fight not to reveal a secret, but to keep one…
Sherlock Holmes: The Devil’s Daughter is available on Steam for $49.99.
Finally this week, Dharker Studios is back. Not going to waste a lot of time here…let’s just hope they don’t try and pull what Winged Cloud did last year and just flood the market with cheap ecchi. Although, considering we’re already on the fourth official Dharker release this year (fifth if you count Starlight Drifter which is still in Early Access), the odds are not currently in this favor. Well, let’s go into Summer Fling with at least a partially open mind, shall we? To the synopsis:
You are entering your summer break before university begins. And what better way to spend a summer break than at the lake with two friends, will the summer become an unforgettable time or will it just fade away. Welcome to your Summer Fling.
Summer Fling is available on Steam for $12.99.
And that’s it for now. We’ll be back soon though to cover the rest of June’s game releases. JP3: OUT.