The Christmas holidays have come once again, with all the festive cheer and merrymaking wrapped in a warm and fuzzy blanket. Unfortunately, I have another Sakura game to review this year as well and that always feels like being kicked out into the freezing cold butt naked.
Christmas is a very busy holiday for a reason, involving a lot of preparation: buying gifts, preparing traditional festive meals, calling up your distant loved ones to wish them all the best for the season and the upcoming year, and so on. It’s a whole lot of work and organizing your time is crucial before you actually get to enjoy it. Unlike Sakura Christmas Party, the main topic of this year’s Christmas review, I do not like to waste people’s time, especially on important occasions such as this. I will do my best to make this whole affair short and sweet, so you can go back to enjoying the festivities with higher-quality erotic entertainment than this.
A Virgin Un-Unspotted
The story begins with Fumio, a young man, visiting his friend Honoka for an annual Christmas party with his two other female friends, Miyu and Choko. It’s quickly revealed that this isn’t going to be your run-of-the-mill Christmas party, as all the girls seemed to have sexual relations with Fumio in the past and the gathering is just sort of an excuse to literally fuck around for a few days. That does sound like an interesting premise for eroge even if it wasn’t Christmas themed, doesn’t it? Sadly, if you’re even vaguely familiar with any of Winged Cloud previous Sakura titles, you would know that the developers are masters of wasting narrative potential.
The girls all dress skimpily and provocatively, ready to entice Fumio into sexy times, but if you hoped they’d get down straight to business and down on the protagonist, you will be sorely disappointed. Sakura Christmas Party decides bore you out of your stockings with dull, uninteresting and vaguely-explored backstories for all the characters, Fumio’s angst about the future (which is present all throughout the less-than-one-hour long story) and scenes of baking and cooking Christmas treats that were supposed to serve as comedy relief. The relief doesn’t come in any shape or form, even when the game finally decides to introduce nudity and sex scenes. With a scenario of three horny girls inside one house, you would think an orgy is inevitable and just a matter of time. You would be terribly wrong, just as I was.
A great representation of what I felt like while playing Sakura Christmas Party.
Blue Balls Christmas
Even for an eroge title, the story in Sakura Christmas Party does everything in its power to give you major blue balls. This is achieved through character referencing kinky situations the trio of girls and Fumio could end up in to spice up their time together. Fumio, unfortunately possessing the mind of some kind of alien robot, dismisses most of those suggestions, eliminating any chance for this game to have any fun with its writing and giving the reader an even more titillating experience. The few times Fumio lets his desires run wild, he engages in really short, albeit nicely drawn, standard vanilla (barring one yuri scene and kinda cool food play and bodypaint scene at the very end) nudity/sex scenes. They happen quite abruptly and end as soon as they begin, so even if you enjoy the pleasantly colorful art, you don’t even have the time to unzip your pants. Luckily, the game has a gallery system that you can check out after you finish the game. Granted, you’ll only get mileage out of it if haven’t turned the game off at that point out of sheer annoyance and boredom.
After this exchange, the screen fades to black and the sex itself is completely skipped.
All I Want For Christmas is Not This
Sakura Christmas Party is yet another low-quality visual novel Winged Cloud churned out according to the same dull and uninteresting formula. After the somewhat decent production that Sakura Dungeon turned out to be, one would think the developers have finally decided to up the game and deliver quality products that don’t feel like colossal wastes of everyone’s time and money. You could easily argue that I’m being a tad bit unfair, considering I’m reviewing a game that’s available completely free of charge. Winged Cloud’s testament of goodwill to all men this special time of the year, so to speak. Well, I looked this gift horse in the mouth and recognized it for the diseased donkey that it is, and I hope that you will as well. That said, I hope you have a very Merry Christmas doing something else other than reading Sakura Christmas Party.
For those that still want to give the title a try, the digital-only version of it now available for free on the Denpasoft store.