Today we’re going to talk about Witch on the Holy Night, the first Type-Moon visual novel to ever get an official English translation.
It follows two mages living in a mansion on top of a hill, and a boy who gets mixed up with them while struggling to adjust to life in the city.
The story premise sounded interesting enough for me to want to try it, especially since I wanted to show my support. I ordered a physical copy from Play-Asia, because I thought it was too niche to get a physical release in North America.
I was wrong about that, and the North American physical copy will be out on January 27.
But for those playing digital copies from the eShop or an import like mine, Witch on the Holy Night is already out. I decided to play it now, making it possibly my last game of 2022, and I’m glad I did.
Witch on the Holy Night is an interesting visual novel. It has its share of funny slice-of-life scenes, but also some intense dramatic parts and exciting fight scenes. After just a few hours, I was invested in the characters and wanted to know how things would turn out. I almost regret trying the demo first, because the demo’s presentation of several out-of-context scenes meant I had an idea of where certain aspects of the story would go, even if I didn’t know how they’d get there.
I know there’s a connection to other Type-Moon works, but I haven’t played them, so all of these characters were new to me. I also found the world fascinating, mainly the magic system it presents through both action and explanations.
Aside from the compelling story and characters, I also have to praise the presentation. I’ve never played a visual novel with such high production values before. It has constant CGs, unique backgrounds, and animations – it’s incredible!
(I also love the chapter select screen, which is presented as a bookshelf, with more books added as you complete chapters.)
Now, it’s a kinetic novel, which means there aren’t any choices to make. You start at the beginning and read all the way through to the end. There are some optional chapters unlocked along the way, which provide more of a look at the characters and their lives through non-crucial scenes.
The one exception is the bonus chapter unlocked after you finish the main story. This final extra chapter is a standalone story that does have choices, as you try to solve a murder mystery. That was a bit of unexpected fun on top of an already-great visual novel.
Witch on the Holy Night was originally released in Japan in 2012, and apparently the writer intended to make two sequels. Those haven’t come out yet, but with the remake bringing new attention and new audiences to it, there might be new hope. I thoroughly enjoyed my time with Witch on the Holy Night, so I have my fingers crossed that we’ll see those sequels eventually.---
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