At the moment the Humble Bundle weekly bundle is kind of Valentine’s Day themed in that it contains at least one dating sim. I say at least one as I’ve only heard of two of the games before and I’m kind of unclear about whether the others are dating sims or not. This bundle is only available for this week, it has 6 days left on it so if it sounds interesting to you then I’d get it while it’s on offer as it seems a great price to me. This post is just a small description of each and my first impressions from them as I haven’t played them yet, I just wanted to get this post up while the offer was still on.
The bundle can be found here at the Humble Bundle Weekly Bundle page (the link will still work but it’ll be a different bundle after the 19th February 2015).
I love buying games on Humble Bundle as you can pay as much or little as you want, though hitting certain thresholds does unlock certain games normally, and the money goes to charity, or multiple charities. This time there are 3 games that you get no matter what you pay, 3 more unlock at the average (as I’m writing this it’s $5.75), $8 unlocks Hatoful Boyfriend and $35 unlocks a body pillow case with one of the characters from Hatoful Boyfriend on it which I wasn’t interested in so stayed under that. All the games are available with Steam keys so can be downloaded through Steam and 5 of the games are available as downloads for Apple which is good as that often isn’t possible. If you go on the website I think the printable valentine’s cards are available whether you have an account or not though I’m not sure but they’re free and include characters from the various games. There are also a few soundtracks for games; Analogue: a hate story, Hate Plus and Roommates. I’ve never actually downloaded the soundtracks from the various humble bundles I’ve bought though I should probably look at them more as I do have them for some of the games.
Onto the games themselves now, I haven’t heard of 5 of them but the descriptions make them sound like they’ll be ok to play through once, if not then I got them free anyway in this bundle so I’m not that bothered and can delete them off my computer while keeping them in Steam if I want. I’ll do the two main ones I bought this for first as I’ve watched playthroughs, at least part way through anyway, for both.
Long Live the Queen (pay anything)
In this game you play as a 14 year old girl who has recently become queen as her mother died. You have to build up stats that will help you to become a good queen, including magic, by using activities chosen at the beginning of each day and situations arise where you have to make decisions that will affect the future of the country, and often the length of your own life.
I haven’t watched a full playthrough of this one as I was planning on buying it myself and wanted to have a bit of a surprise. It is by the same people as the Magical Diary game I posted about a couple of weeks ago and the art style is very similar. Having watched parts of the playthroughs of various YouTubers this looks like it’s quite a challenging game as there seem to be a lot of situations that pop up that seem like they’d be perfectly innocent but end in your death. I’m sure it’ll take me a few goes to get the hang of it and to survive long enough to actually become queen. If you wanted this game on its own it costs £6.99 on steam so if you’re not interested in the others this might be the best way for you to get it.
Hatoful Boyfriend (pay $8 minimum)
This game is one that has been covered a lot on YouTube, basically it’s a dating sim where you’re a human in a school full of pigeons and you want to date one of them. There’s a huge range of characters as in each is totally different and unusual even within dating sims and each has both a bird version and an anime/manga style human version which pops up when you’re initially introduced if you want it to. There is a lot of storyline for each of them and back stories for each that are partially uncovered in the others’ stories as well as in the bonus unlocked by completing all the birds.
This is one of the strangest dating sims I think I’ve ever seen. I remember seeing a short video of this on the Yogscast channel a while ago and thinking it seemed really odd and not really something I’d want to play but then I saw Dodger’s playthrough (this is the link to the playlist) and it looked like so much fun. I didn’t really think I’d buy it as full price it is £6.99 on its own though I was considering it when I’d finished other games I have sitting in my STeam library unplayed. It is such a long game and has so much backstory and bonuses for finishing with all of the characters that I think it’s worth themoney to me especially in the bundle.
Now the games I’ve never even heard of before but are included in the bundle. All these descriptions are based on what I read in the Humble Bunble website, to read the actual descriptions and see small videos on each one then it’s best to visit the site as I’ve not played any of these yet.
Analogue: A Hate Story (pay anything)
On the site is describes this as being based in the future, thousands of years after the 25th century though I don’t know a specific date. It says Earth launched people into deep space to start an interstellar colony and the ship got lost. Thousands of years later it’s been found and the game is about reading the logs of the dead crew. There are 5 endings and 2 persuable characters though I’m not sure what that means in this game.
I like the sound of this one, I like games that explore what would happen if things went wrong in space, how people would react in such an enclosed and isolated place so I’m looking forward to seeing how this one goes. I’m not sure about the persuable characters but I do like finding different endings for games if they have them so I’ll probably end up playing this at least 5 times to get all the different ones if I like it enough.
Go! Go! Nippon! ~My first trip to Japan~ (pay anything)
From the description on the site you go travelling with two young sisters who take you to famous Japanese sight seeing destinations. At the same time I guess you’re trying to date one of them, or maybe both, as they take you out to dinner and ‘grow closer’ as it says. It describes this as a “Guide Game — a guidebook in game format!” which sounds an interesting idea.
I’m not all that sure about this one, the Japan side of it I’m interested to see what they do with but the description makes it sound like it’ll have the girls be the generic dating sim characters. I’ll give it a go but don’t have high expectations for it, I guess it’ll be a nice surprise if it’s good though.
WORLD END ECONOMiCA episode.01 (pay at least the average)
This is described as a visual novel so I’m not sure how much interaction and gameplay there will be. It’s set in the far future on the moon and focuses on a boy called Haru who needs a lot of capitol to reach his goal and uses the stock market to do this.
This game is from the author of Spice and Wolf, an anime which I’ve started watching and enjoy so looking forward to this to see the storyline. It’ll be interesting to see how they bring the stock market aspect into it as that seems to be the main focus of the game. I’m not sure how involved the characters will be but I do like a few games that have the money making to get to goals aspects that this seems like it will.
It does say this is a three part series and I think you only get the first part looking at the title so I’ll see how much I like it as to whether I buy the second and third parts but getting the first part at least gives you the start of the storyline and you get to know the characters and whether you’d like the rest.
Hate Plus (pay at least the average)
There isn’t much of a description for this game though it’s a sequel to Analogue: a hate story so I guess it’ll be set in the same sort of environment. The description says that you can carry on with the previous saves from the other game or start fresh if you don’t have it which reminds me of Telltale Games so I wonder if previous decisions and gameplay will have an effect on this other game. The website describes it as: “A dark visual novel about transhumanism, cosplay, cake-baking, and the slow patriarchal erosion of freedoms taken for granted” which is definitely an unusual combination and I’m looking forward to seeing what this game is like.
I’ll probably decide whether I want to download this after finishing the previous game as I’m not likely to play the two side by side and it means I can save space on the computer.
Roommates (pay at least the average)
Going by the description on the site this sounds like a slice of life type game, though it does mention extra curricular fun so sounds like there will be a dating sim element to it as well. You have to choose between two characters, one male and one female, and guide them through everyday life in college. They have to share with 4 other tenants in their dorm so I think there will be a lot of interaction with others.
It sounds like this is a game that could have a lot of replayability, it all depends on how much decisions alter the experience after you’ve made them. I think it also depends a lot on how much interaction there will be and if the other characters they interact with will remember what was said. I’m hoping there’s quite a difference in each playthrough though I will probably play it at least a second time if I like it enough just to see the difference when choosing the male and female characters.
Overall I’m very happy with this bundle, even without the ones I haven’t heard of then you can get Long Live the Queen and Hatoful Boyfriend for $8 if you want which converts to somewhere around £5 when each is £6.99 on steam in the UK or $9.99 in the USA so more than the minimum to pay to unlock Hatoful Boyfriend.
If you like dating sims or visual novels that seem to have a dating element, or at least an aspect of choosing a character to go after though I’m unsure how much dating comes into a couple of them, then this seems a good bundle to get. If you’re unsure then I suggest looking up some of the games on YouTube, there’s probably playthroughs or reviews that will give you a better idea of what the games are like, this was more my first impressions.
Looking at the videos on the Humble Bundle website I do like the art styles of all of them, they’re very much anime/manga based to me and have that appearance for the characters (besides the bird photos in Hatoful Boyfriend) so if you don’t like that style then this probably wouldn’t be a good bundle for you even with the price.
I will definitely be playing all of these, I’ll probably do small reviews on them too as I’m hoping to do more gaming reviews alongside the beauty ones I mainly have at the moment.
The image at the top is from the Humble Bundle weekly bundle page.