Katawa Shoujo review

It took me 3 nights to complete this game and those are nights well spent. Lilly is definitely the best Katawa Shoujo girl in my opinion and I’m actually glad that I played through Rin’s route last. Damn, I can’t find a good Hisao x Lilly fanfic! I’m just rambling already here so here it is, I present to you my Katawa Shoujo review.

I’m going to review this game according to three points, as this will make my life easier.


Gameplay

The gameplay is pretty much what you’d expect from a text based dating sim game where in you click through dialogues on the text box and as with all text based dating sims, there comes a point that it gets tedious and you just want to end the damn route really fast, thankfully this game has the skip dialogue function (which I think is a must for all text based visual novels) through the spacebar. Each route is actually takes a bit of considerable time to finish, even when skipping through all the nonsense dialogues, which I think is a good thing depending on the game and most great VN’s have long routes per heroine. I really like how Act 1 is a web when it comes to mapping out to a route of your choice which means Act 1 is quite long which I think is a good thing. I really liked how well the Act 2 intros subtly introduce the characters and the ordeals that they have to face in order to give you a peak of what you should expect. The ero scenes are very plain and aren’t exactly stellar, so if you ever don’t like the ero scenes, you can just turn it off at the options menu and you are on your way to aquatic life appreciation during the ero scenes.


Music

God, I love the BGM of this game because it is very relaxing to listen to. I really liked the skilled use of mostly acoustic instruments and percussion instruments in music pieces to convey a wide range of emotion depending on the scene. Taking the the context of Katawa Shoujo out, I could listen to the BGM just for the pure purpose of easy listening. The BGM of the game felt mostly organic.


Story

This is the strongest suit of the game as this is where the replay value of the game comes in. It handles the subject matter of “romance with girls with disabilities” in a very mature and tasteful manner. I really like how act 1 introduces you to the characters and sets in motion the story of the heroine that you may choose in just one chapter. Each heroine is unique and has her own character and the story does a good job of roping the player in to discover more of a heroine’s character, trials and tribulations. The story also does a great job of not being stagnant and main character’s growth is evident as the story goes on and its execution kinda subtly differs according to the route chosen. Character development is done at a very good pace, not too slow, not too fast.

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11 thoughts on “Katawa Shoujo review

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  2. I don’t know what else to say. I loved Katawa Shoujo, and finished it rather quickly. I was never a huge fan of VN/Eroge,but this game wasn’t bad in the slightest. Granted, 5 years was a long wait, but considering the staff, I think I can look beyond the lengthy wait period. I’d recommend this to any Vn/Eroge gamer, but remember it is less of an eroge. There aren’t many H-scenes at all.

    Though, with such a pleasant story, I’ve looked past that as well.

    Here’s to Four Leaf.

    • Katawa Shoujo is really a great VN considering its origins, though this isn’t exactly the greatest in my opinion, it is really a great introductory game for those who are just starting to get into visual novels.

  3. It’s a great VN, considering how it was created and that it’s distributed for free.
    Although I beg to differ with your conclusion that Lilly is “definitely the best girl”, I found her rather bland/boring and her part the typical Hollywood stereotype route. We’re talking opinions here, but since you put it out there, I had to throw my two cents in.

  4. I’m really enjoying this game so far. I just finished Hanako’s route and am getting ready for another route. I’m extremely impressed that this was produced so well with all the background behind it. There are few things I’d like to note though. For one, the art isn’t very consistent; While I think it’s got the perfect atmosphere for such a story and setting, there were times when it was painfully obvious that the artist were different – Emi and her sprites, for example. In contrast to Rin, who was toned and smoothed out like other visual novel sprites, Emi’s was jagged and paper-like, leaving me unable to stay in the story’s world. I also wished there was some voice acting – I think it would really compliment the characters and their personalities, if done well enough. But under the circumstances I can understand the need to pass it by. I AM, however, extremely pleased to see that they used an idea many visual novels don’t have – a choice to return to different important scenes from a finished arc. Most visual novels or eroges will just have recollections of the adult content, but here, they took great pains to add in all the scenes for each character, and I’m very grateful for that. That’s all for now – I’m gonna get back to it. Thanks for your review!

    • Very good observations you made there. I’d say that most well made story driven VN’s offer the choice to return to different important scenes from a finished arc, and having that option is a clear indication that KS is more than just simple fap fuel.

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  6. This is/was my first visual novel and I didn’t even know there was any ero before the end of it, not that I felt it was out of place but…
    Rin is my favourite character, every line she utters is like a direct question to life itself and the 2nd act made me start smiling again after years of shyness. (I weren’t prepared for it but a few tears of joy never hurts :3 ) Now if only Emi’s path will make me take up regular exercise then KS will really be a heart-mender in a literal sense.
    Thank you for the review!

  7. Pingback: Anti-Social Geniuses Reference Resource Mondays | OASG

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