While I don’t discuss the scenes in detail, this game contains explicit sexual content, so this is your warning before playing or spending your time reading my thoughts. You have been warned! Sometimes in life everything seems to hit you at once, and you begin to look for a distraction to temporarily whisk you away from it all. You need something entertaining, cute, fluffy, just something to bring a smile to your face. As I made a difficult decision to put off a review of a much darker game due to recent events, along came The Tower of Five Hearts. Developed by TsukiWare, and published by MangaGamer, Five Hearts is an adult visual novel with a yuri theme.
The Tower of Five Hearts is about a young princess named Marie, and five maids from various continents that have come to vie for her hand in marriage. The maid who wins Marie’s heart also gains prosperity for the region she hails from. As is typical of most visual novels, you go through the story and the choices that you make help determine which girl you want to marry, or if you will spend life forever alone. I won’t even lie, my first ending was a bad ending. In this game you need to pay attention to what the various girls say or miss out on vital information needed to make a key decision.
All the characters in the game are Kemonomimi, which means all the ladies present have animal ears and a tail, but otherwise look like normal people. In my opinion, you can never go wrong in this sense, especially if you throw in a fox girl. Not only is a fox girl present, you have ladies that are cat, dog, rabbit, and lizard. So I’m sure you’ll find one that suits your fancy rather quickly. The lizard girl was initially my favorite by appearance, but the fox won me over in the end.
I really enjoyed the aesthetics of this game all around. There is something very appealing about an indie visual novel’s character designs. It brings about a more intimate connection for me with the characters, which doesn’t always happen in more mainstream eroge titles. The cut scene artwork especially is very well done, and getting to see a fox girl nibble on Marie’s ear is one of the sexiest things ever. The background art is also nicely done and helps set the ambience of everyone living in a tower together. When it comes to game’s soundtrack, it gets the job done it sets out to do. After I was done, I honestly couldn’t recall any of it standing out enough that would make me want to listen while not playing the game itself.
I had a couple issues with game overall. The smaller issue of the two, was the writing in the beginning of the game during the setup and introductions felt a little off and stiff. It sometimes felt a little too direct and to the point. Thankfully as the game gets going, you can tell TsukiWare’s writer became more comfortable with the stories they were trying to tell. So by the end of the game, the writing had a much better flow to it.
The much larger problem I had was with the game client itself. When you would try to bring up the save or load screen, it definitely would lag a bit before appearing. Also not being able to right click or hit escape to bring up the menu screen just felt off after playing so many games that make it much easier to navigate. I also noticed the longer I played, the more small glitches would occur. I had an issue when a choice stayed on the screen after I made my decision, and wouldn’t allow the next choice to appear. Reloading fixed this, but it broke my immersion during one girls’ arc. I also had glitches where other things I clicked in the UI would also stay highlighted as if I was still on them, but they didn’t require any reloading since they weren’t directly keeping me from making choice or continuing the game.
Overall TsukiWare’s The Tower of Five Hearts was a fun time, that provided the distraction that was much needed. If you are looking for a game featuring cute animal girls romancing each other, this is the one for you. It isn’t a long visual novel, and can be finished in five to ten hours depending on how quickly you read. Outside of the UI issues, it is definitely a pleasant and adorable experience that will surely bring a smile to your face when you romance the one girl you were yearning for.
Rating: 3.5 Out 5 Beers
A digital Steam code was provided by the publisher for review.