Monokuma returns in Danganronpa V3

By the looks of things, 2017 may very well be the year of the Monokuma. With the already announced Danganronpa 1•2 Reload and Danganronpa Another Episode: Ultra Despair Girls already making their way to the PlayStation 4, fans couldn’t hope for more. Well more was delivered anyways. Continue reading Monokuma returns in Danganronpa V3

Week of NISA Round Up

Over the past five days, the Prinnies at NIS America has announced their upcoming titles for the next year. With so much content announced, some of it may be easy to miss. Luckily, we here at HHL have decided to round up all the exciting information and throw it all out in one post. (And no, there aren’t any needless slideshows or annoying video ads in our lists.) Continue reading Week of NISA Round Up

Persona 5 Delayed, Now Featuring Dual Audio

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We don’t mean to break your heart, but Persona 5 isn’t coming out on Valentine’s Day after all. Considering the fact that Persona 5 is easily one of 2017’s most anticipated games, the new release date being April 4, 2017, is sad news indeed. To make up for the delayed release, however, Persona 5 will now feature both English and Japanese audio. Continue reading Persona 5 Delayed, Now Featuring Dual Audio

Project DIVA Arcade is Heading West

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It’s finally happening! That’s right folks, the highly anticipated Hatsune Miku -Project DIVA- Future Tone is making its way to the west. Continue reading Project DIVA Arcade is Heading West

Idea Factory Press Event 2017

Last week our friends at Idea Factory held their annual press event where they “iffy-cially” revealed three new titles to grace our shores this coming year! Between an Action RPG, a visual novel, and a dungeon crawler, there might just be something for everybody. Oh, and did we mention a classic title for upcoming Steam release? Continue reading Idea Factory Press Event 2017

Review: Superdimension Neptune VS Sega Hard Girls

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“A goddess and a Sega Hard Girl in an all-out duel: it just sounds fun.”

When the first game debuted, Hyperdimension Neptunia introduced an original concept. What would the world be like if video game consoles came to life? Ever since the first game, the series has answered just that. For most of the series, the heroines Blanc, Noire, and Vert each represent Nintendo Wii, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360 respectively. Interestingly, rather than being based on an actual console, the series’ main Neptune represents the unreleased Sega Neptune. Neptune isn’t the only Sega-inspired girl as Plutia, Nepgear, and Uzume each share this trait by too being based on the Sega Genesis, Sega Game Gear, and Sega Dreamcast. Despite this theme, Sega itself hasn’t had any direct connection with the series since the original title. Since then, however, Sega released their own interpretation of the idea known as the Sega Hard Girls.

Finally, things come full circle as the CPU of Hyperdimension Neptunia collide with the Sega Hard Girls. But is this a clash of the ages, or is it merely a battle of the bronze?

Continue reading Review: Superdimension Neptune VS Sega Hard Girls

Review: Yomawari: Night Alone

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“Poro, let’s go home…”

Horror games come in all shapes and sizes. While many recent titles have geared more towards an action-oriented design, others stay a bit more in touch with their roots. Just in time for Halloween, NIS America is releasing their own Horror/Survival title, Yomawari: Night Alone. Armed with little more than a flashlight, Yomawari promises to challenge players to face the bump in the night. But is Yomawari nightmare fuel, or is it just another unfulfilled dream?

Story: 9/10
miss-marySimply put, Yomawari: Night Alone is about a girl, her sister, and their dog; however the game is anything but simple. The story begins with the young protagonist, who will now be referred to as Me, taking her dog, Poro, out for a walk. Something in the night seems to upset Poro, but realizing the late hour, his human deems it best to head on home. Problems arise during the journey home, however, resulting in Poro’ supposed running away. Upon the party of one returning home, Me’s sister takes notice. Deciding to seek out Poro herself, she sets out leaving the player behind. After waiting for some time, the task falls upon the player to bring them both home.

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Unlike a majority of mainstream horror games, Night Alone is by no means a dialogue heavy game. While the lack of dialogue might demerit some games a Story section of its review, it only strengthens its merit here. Little is told about the sisters and the town in which they live. Clues concerning current events can be found on signs and graffiti throughout the streets not unlike Alan Wake. Yomawari tells just enough story to foreshadow events and build tension. What makes Yomawari truly terrifying is that it is all played through the eyes of an innocent little girl. Expect the unexpected as things are often different than they appear. The more light shed on the game’s world, the darker it becomes.

Design: 9/10
road-blockerMuch like its spiritual predecessor, htoL#NiQ: The Firefly Diary, the design of Yomawari: Night Alone is its most misleading element. At first glance, Yomawari looks something like a children’s book. Arguably the game’s most important design is that of its protagonist, Me. As with Mion before her, Me is portrayed by a simple yet cute design. Despite her lack of characterization though a majority of the game, her innocent appearance is more than enough to make the player protective of their new little sister. It makes it that much worse when things begin to turn.

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Unlike its predecessor, it doesn’t take very long for things to escalate in Yomawari. Aside from the picture book designs of Me, and her little dog too, the game looks straight out of a nightmare. Each abomination looks worse than the last as they remind players of their greatest childhood fears. From moving shadows to Hanako-san herself, there is no shortage of horrific sights. These are the types of psychological horrors that’d make Puella Magi Madoka Magica blush. In a similar manner, the contrasting of the innocent characters with the dark designs result in something truly spectacular.

Gameplay: 9/10
streetlight-shadowIn terms of gameplay, Yomawari: Night Alone sticks with the basics. Throughout the course of the game, the player will take direct control of Me. Interestingly, the game only features a total of three controls. The first is free movement through the use of the control stick. As Me doesn’t have many ways to protect herself, the movement is easily the most important aspect of the game. In addition to her normal walking speed, Me may also sneak around or run, whichever seems best in a given situation. Aside from movement, Me may also use her flashlight to identify enemies and throw items to combat them. While Me really has no way to actually harm those that hunt her, the items she throws may distract just long enough for her to escape.

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The game plays more like a traditional Horror Survival as opposed to the fast-paced action of many recent titles. With limited resources and even less guidance, it is up to the player to adapt to the dark world they enter. Rather than being divided into multiple levels, Yomawari: Night Alone in its entirety takes place in a single town map.  While the player may go almost anywhere they’d like, changing spawn points for enemies often result in players to run to their next goal, even if unintentionally. The game creates the illusion of an open world while always bringing players exactly where the game wants them, resulting in a perfectly immersive world.

Sound: 10/10
monster-catThere it is, a rare perfect score! In most occasions, a perfect score in sound would be given to a game with an unforgettable soundtrack. Interestingly what earns Yomawari this perfect score is quite the opposite. Rather than using a soundtrack throughout the game, Yomawari instead opts to focus on ambient sounds. Much of the game’s world is eerily quiet, which makes each of the game’s sound effects that much more noticeable. Each step Me takes echoes throughout the game as she marches towards death’s door. When combined with the cries of monsters and objects blowing in the wind, Yomawari creates a tension so thick it’d take a butter knife to cut.

Overall…
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Overall, Yomawari: Night Alone is one of the best NIS games yet. When considering their library, that’s saying quite a lot. The game creates a wonderfully dark town for the player to explore. The game challenges the player without ever being too hard and creates tension without ever having to rely on jump scares. Yomawari: Night Alone is the perfect companion for this Halloween night.

HEY! HEY!! LISTEN!!! gives Yomawari: Night Alone 9 coins out of 10!

Review: Criminal Girls 2 Party Favors

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“Could you be serious, please?”

The reformation system gives a special group of people in Hell, known as delinquents, a second chance to do the right thing. To be accepted into the reformation system is the delinquent must of passed on before they had the chance to commit their sin and be a girl. Criminal Girls 2: Party Favors will allow the player go through a smooth and successful process, but that changes when a convict seems to have sneaked into the player’s group and the group is sent to the pits of Hell. It’s up to the player to make sure their group survives hell while trying to reform properly.

Continue reading Review: Criminal Girls 2 Party Favors