Tuesday, September 29, 2015
Circus Reviews - A Kiss for the Petals - Remembering How We Met
A Kiss for the Petals, or Sono Hanabira, is apparently a relatively famous series of yuri visual novels, but I admit I'd never heard of them until MangaGamer announced their licensing and translation of this latest entry in the series, Remembering How We Met. Apparently this is also one of the few all-ages' titles of the series, the rest being a bit too risque for Steam (though not at all too risque for MangaGamer in general if you've ever taken a good look at their catalog). It seems like they're trying to use this game as a sort of gateway for bringing over more yuri titles, which I am 100% on board with. Also, it didn't cost very much, which I am also 100% on board with.
Remembering How We Met follows the relationship of Risa Azumi and Miya Ayase, two girls who couldn't be more different. Risa is a kind-hearted class representative who goes out of her way to help everyone and studies rigorously to maintain her good grades, while Miya is more aloof and less social but doesn't have to put much effort into studying due to her high intelligence. When Miya starts skipping class to pursue her own interests, Risa takes it upon herself to get to the bottom of it, and from there, sugary pink love follows, and no one was surprised in any way.
The only characters that are given any depth are the main couple, and they're nice enough, if a bit stock. I'm more drawn to Risa; she's so compassionate and well-meaning, and also a constantly blushing dork, and it's very appealing. I don't completely get the in-game appeal of Miya, but her characterization improves as the game goes on and she starts to show more of herself to Risa. The other girls in class are literally just named Girl A, Girl B, etc. and so I can't really come up with much to say about them, other than noting how refreshing it is to see high school girls bestowing popularity on someone who actually deserves it.
The art is quite enjoyable, but it's a shame that it wasn't optimized for PC. The resolution the game gives is 800x600, which makes trying to fullscreen the game a futile exercise. As I understand, the art was originally optimized for tablets and phones, so it's disappointing but not surprising. The sprites sometimes don't change with the dialogue as often as I'd like, but are artistically sound. Background music is pleasant, but nothing really stands out.
On paper, we have a very average experience. As mentioned previously, there aren't any real surprises with the characters or the story. You can guess just by reading the synopsis what's going to happen. And the ending, while nice, is not only obvious but ridiculously abrupt, seeming to come right in the middle of everything. So, there's nothing really new here, and if you're looking for massive hidden depths or sudden plot twists, this is not the place to look at all.
But while there isn't anything world changing here, there's nothing inherently bad about the game either. It's a cute and fluffy story, and I had fun reading it. It is a kinetic novel, meaning no choices, but I'm not sure where else the story would go other than where it already went, and I don't think I want to see a bad end for these characters. There isn't groundbreaking substance here, but if you're a fan of lighthearted romance or of yuri in general, I think you'll find some fun here.
A Kiss for the Petals - Remembering How We Met is available in English on Steam or on MangaGamer's website. Purchasing from MangaGamer will also provide you with a Steam key.
Final verdict: There's nothing really new or unexpected here, but Remembering How We Met is at least fluffy and sweet enough to provide some measure of enjoyment, and I hope its localization leads to further licensing of yuri games.
A Kiss for the Petals - Remembering How We Met is developed by St. Michael's Girls School and published in English by MangaGamer. The opinions expressed in this review are my own. I was not compensated in any way for this review.