A cat burglar trying to do a good deed by stealing from thieves gets herself caught in a stimulating situation. Does she submit to the mistress who captured her, or can she leave with her sanity still intact? Find out in today’s title, Phantom Thief Silver Cat.
Ginka Nekonome is a wealthy girl from a prestigious family by day, but by night, she takes on the identity of Phantom Thief Silver Cat. Similar to a modern day Robin Hood, Silver Cat steals stolen items and returns them to their original owners. When Ginka learns that the stolen jewel, “Emerald Queen,” is located in the Kurobara mansion, she goes undercover as a maid to steal it back. Little does she know, Mineko Kurobara, the heiress of the Kurobara family, knowingly stole the jewel to lure and capture Silver Cat for her own twisted desires. Will Ginka escape the binds of Mineko, or will she succumb to the painful ecstasy being engraved into her body?
This 2017 visual novel goes by two different titles. The title used on the original DLsite release is Phantom Thief Silver Cat, but for some reason or another, SakuraGame changed it to Cat Girl when it was released on Steam. Not only is the Steam title different, but so is the game description. If you want to know what the game is about, please check DLsite first. Even though I played the Steam version of this game with the uncensored patch, I will henceforth refer to the game as Phantom Thief Silver Cat throughout this review.
Phantom Thief Silver Cat’s story mainly consists of the many tortures that Mineko puts Ginka through. The plot is set up in the beginning of the story and goes straight to the point: You are a thief and you are stealing this, plain and simple. Nothing story-related happens until you branch off into one of the game’s three endings. Everything in-between is just h-scenes with no fluid story progression or character development. The choices you make in the game mainly decide what type of fetish is involved. The only choice that matters is the final one, which has three options, each one leading to an ending.
One huge issue with Phantom Thief Silver Cat is the translation. It’s poorly done, but it’s not completely incomprehensible; it just ruins the immersion and mood because of just how hilariously bad it is. Another problem is that not only is onomatopoeia overused in the text, but the words used for each sound are very unnatural and awkward, coming off more like a string of random syllables. I’d blame the translation for how the onomatopoeia is structured, but it’s a much bigger crime that it was even written into the game at all. I don’t need to be told what every sound is like when I can hear it just fine.
This is the sound of tickling. I’m not kidding.
There is also a problem with the programming of this version of the game. I do not know why this happens, but I would sometimes get a popup window saying, “tag:[P]not exists” or some other variation. Once you exit from the window, the text continues, sometimes extending past the text box. This makes it irritating and difficult to read. I don’t know what causes this, but I think it has something to do with the text box and the translation process for the game. It can get annoying, but it doesn’t happen often and it only takes one click to get it off your screen. It’s a hindrance, but a minor one.
In a perfect world, bad ends wouldn’t exist and we would never have errors like this in visual novels.
While the text box may not function properly, the visual design for it certainly complements Silver Cat’s costume design. A lot of the artwork has an old stylistic feel to it that makes me think of espionage movies, with the theme of the layout giving off a sort of spy gadget appearance. Most of the CGs are decently drawn and pull you into the h-scenes. The CGs of Ginka being tortured are nice, but the backgrounds are extremely lacking. It’s as if the artist was trying to distract us with fetishes so we would ignore the dull and unfitting backgrounds.
That being said, the best part of Phantom Thief Silver Cat would have to be the h-scenes. There is a nice variety of them with different fetishes for such a short visual novel. Each scene was done well and lasts for an appropriate amount of time. I especially liked the ones with erotic electrostimulation, which I think showcases the best of Ginka’s screams. There is a nice variety to choose from since all of the choices in the game pertain to what Ginka is put through. There are two scenes per punishment, with two whipping, waterboarding, bondage, electrostimulation, and doggy punishment scenes.
While the CGs are nice, it’s glaring just how different the character sprites are drawn when compared to the CGs. Even though most (if not all) of the CGs only show Ginka, it is obvious how disproportionate the faces are on the regular sprites. You can tell that Silver Cat’s sprites and CGs take priority over the other sprites, and I single out Silver Cat specifically because even Ginka’s normal sprite looks odd. It’s almost annoying to see Ginka looking sexy as fuck in the CGs, yet she looks so derpy and chipmunk-ish in some of her sprites.
The voice acting for the characters was great, with each character had a voice actress ranging from decent to good. I liked Mineko’s seductive voice (except for when she was doing her ojou-sama laugh) and Ginka’s whines and cries of pain behind the ball gag were enjoyable to listen to. The background music also complimented the scenes and added to the voice actress’ performance. It might not be amazing, but it matches the tone and setting of this visual novel.
One annoying thing about the sound was that each sound bite was separated via a text box. There were never two or more sounds or voices playing at the same time. When it was a whipping scene, there would be the crack of a whip with the onomatopoeia in the text box, then Ginka’s reaction to it. When it was a scene with a vibrator, there would be a buzzing sound, then Ginka’s moans in the next text box. It would have been a lot better if they didn’t write in the sounds at all and just had them going on continuously with the voices playing whenever appropriate.
While Phantom Thief Silver Cat is short, only taking four hours to get all the endings, it squeezes in a lot of h-scenes for a mere $0.99. The CG art is a lot better than the sprites, but you rarely get to see the lackluster sprites anyways. Additionally, the in-game music accompanies the scenes nicely, adding to the brutality of the scenes and the performance of the voice actresses. If you’re more interested in a short experience packed full of humiliation than a proper, lengthy story, I suggest you consider this one. Use your spare change from yesterday’s lunch and get yourself a small treat. You will just have to endure the cringeworthy translation and the occasional error messages. If you want more substance and quality to your smut, then skip this one.