Finished the Utawarerumono game last night. The end of the story is still quite messed up, the tactical component was pretty easy and the hentai scenes were forced into the story and superfluous, … but the game was sure a heck lot of fun. With having watched the anime the story (sadly) didn’t hold any surprises for me, but because of the time gap of a few years between I’ve forgotten many of the minor details already which made going through the whole story again still enjoyable. Some of the characters made also a slightly different impression on me this time, especially Kuuya didn’t seem as shilly-shally as in the anime (although she still was). And, of course, “seeing” them all again was really great.
In defence of the tactical component I’ll have to admit that I’ve only played the normal mode so far and I’m sure that the hard modes (1 to 5) should be more challenging. Only problem is that there won’t be any real extra award for playing those, which doesn’t boost my moral to play through all of them very much. Maybe they should have put some extra story into those harder modes, maybe spread the hentai scenes (which can be considered as bonus I guess) over them. And while we are at the hentai stuff, I think it didn’t really rose the enjoyment of the game. They felt mostly forced and rather unfitting. Of course I knew that they would appear at some point in the game, but they could have been better embedded into the story and it would have been really nice to get a choice to go this far with certain girl or not. I’m sure I would have watched most of them anyway, if only for curiosity, but then at least it would have been my (in-game) choice to do so. I guess the playstation version does a better job with having them deleted after all. The story component altogether could have used some real possibility of choices, but maybe I’m demanding a bit much here, after all they had to finish the game in some reasonable time.
So, if you like tactical role-playing games like Fire Emblem and also do like animes (should be a given I guess) then try to get your filthy hands on a (legal!) copy of the PC-version of the Utawarerumono game, download the english-translation patch from the wonderful persons of mirror moon (if not able to read Japanese at least) and have a lot of fun.
And, while speaking about mirror moon, I guess it’s more than worthy to mention that the translation of the second Fate/stay night route, Unlimited Blade Works, is finally completed! Get the new patch while it’s still hot (and possibly, but hopefully not at all, a little bit bugged).