the story is actually interesting. In general terms, of course, the game is focused on the main character, Chizuru, romancing the various Shinsengumi samurai, but there's a clear plot beyond that: she's traveled to Kyoto to find her missing father. After she stumbles into a bad situation almost immediately upon her arrival (in which the Shinsengumi play a prominent role), everything that happens in the game is set in motion. It's appropriately mysterious, which makes this game much closer to an actual novel than most of its other genre brethren.
I’ve played a lot of visual novels in my time, and a lot of them are favourite games, but I’ve got to say, as a student of Japanese history, and a lover of good storytelling, Hakuoki is right up there with my favourite games ever made. Any game that, after finishing, I can put down and say to myself “if that story was presented to me as a novel I would have loved it just as much,” is a good game, as far as I’m concerned.
I loved Hakuoki: Kyoto Winds. I already adored the game's previous iteration as Hakuoki: Demon of the Fleeting Blossom on the PSP in 2012, but Kyoto Winds brings it to the next level. I simply cannot say no to a hard-boiled, politically charged epic with visceral and bloody katana-wielding action, along with romances that feel robust, deep, and meaningful. Hakuoki: Kyoto Winds is my benchmark by which all otome games shall be judged and I recommend that you leave any and all pretenses behind and give this game a look.
Hakuoki: Kyoto Winds is a fantastic otome title with an interesting story and solid, attractive characters. That said, as this is only the first half of the story they're retelling, Kyoto Winds doesn't have a solid conclusion in any of its routes. What it does have going for it however, is double the pathways - and the privilege of being arguably the most content-filled, definitive version of the game.
If you’ve got money to spend, and don’t mind waiting for any sort of conclusion, then Hakuoki: Kyoto Winds is the best way to experience the first half of Idea Factory’s visual novel. The new scenes help to flesh out the existing stories, and the additional characters help make a familiar story feel new again. It’s a shame that all the hard work gets marred by splitting the story into two games, but it’s still a very enjoyable read.
Fans of the otome genre will find a lot to like within Hakuoki: Kyoto Winds. It offers a rich storyline as well as presenting likeable characters within its well-built world. With personalities based on real-life historical figures, the game offers a charming, albeit brief look at an interesting area of Japanese history, as well as the chance to romance some grade-A anime boys.
SummaryThe remastered telling of the visual novel Hakuoki focuses on the story set in Kyoto. The young Chizuru, determined to find her father, will romance the famous samurai of Shinsengumi through a series of engaging stories in this historical fantasy adventure.