Sabbat of the Witch – Review

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    Step into the enchanting world of Sabbat of the Witch, the 2018 visual novel from masters of the craft YuzuSoft. You play as Shuuji Hoshina, a lighthearted yet surprisingly capable student starting at a mysterious new school. Shuuji has a secret: He possesses the mysterious power to perceive the emotions of others.

    One fateful day, Shuuji stumbles upon a scene that defies his wildest imaginations. His quirky classmate Ayachi Nene is revealed to be a witch who randomly experiences strong periods of arousal, something which she has no control over. And so begins a supernatural tale of romance, friendship, and the search for belonging.

    The two of them band together and form the Occult Club, a ragtag group of eccentric girls each with their own unique charms:

    Sabbaat of the Witch Harem
    Sabbat of the Witch – Review

    Ayachi Nene is both attractive and sociable, though her secret identity as a witch leads to some awkward involuntary arousal that she struggles to manage.

    Inaba Meguru at first seems like one of those fake “gal” types, but her genuine personality shines through as she enjoys gaming and making real friends.

    Shiba Tsumugi, despite her young age and cute appearance, is a pretty forward flirt who eventually teams up with Nene.

    The responsible student council president Togakushi Touko puts on a polished persona, but has a cute, flustered side when it comes to romance.

    And the aloof Kotori rounds out the group, becoming closer to everyone as she opens up over the course of the story.

    The heroines are the heart of Sabbat of the Witch, and their distinct personalities and relationships with the protagonist really elevate the game.

    As Shuuji grows close to these adorable oddballs, he starts to uncover certain truths: about the reason for Nene’s random “fits”, the existence of magic, and a shadowy secret lurking in the halls of the academy. He’ll need to navigate the complexities of high school life while working with the club to collect special heart fragments that may hold the key to everything.

    Sabbat Witch Halloween
    Sabbat of the Witch – Review

    Sabbat of the Witch draws you in with its delightful cast and intriguing premise, then keeps you hooked with the promise of supernatural secrets revealed. The Japanese voice acting is pitch perfect, with each actress bringing just the right amount of life and personality to her character. You’ll find yourself grinning like an idiot at every “yahallo!” from Tsumugi and cool quip from Kotori.

    While the game is fairly linear, there are a handful of critical choices to make that will guide you towards a special ending for your favorite girl, or an ending themed around the club’s bonds as a whole. The gameplay may be minimal, but Sabbat knows its strength is its story and characters, and it executes those masterfully.

    Visually, the game is a feast for the eyes. The gorgeous anime-style art makes the girls look like they stepped straight out of a high-budget production on Crunchyroll. Their designs are distinctive and bursting with personality. The user interface is a joy to navigate, with characters’ voices narrating the menus and tons of options to customize the experience to your liking.

    On the adult content side of things, Sabbat takes a “less is more” approach. There are shades of mature themes and the occasional blush-inducing moment, but nothing too explicit. Consider it around the level of a ecchi anime series. An 18+ patch is available for those wanting a somewhat spicier experience, but this is a title that’s more about the heartfelt emotions than the risqué situations.

    Sabbat of the Witch chibi
    Sabbat of the Witch – Review

    If there’s one area Sabbat could have improved, it’s the low number of animated sequences. With such fantastic art, it’s a shame that key events like the band’s performance at the school festival aren’t fully visualized. The game also could have used a gallery to revisit important scenes and CGs. But ultimately, these shortcomings don’t dampen the magic.

    Sabbat of the Witch had me utterly spellbound from start to finish. The well-paced story, memorable characters, and stunning aesthetic overshadow the limitations of the visual novel format. Playing it is like having a fanciful anime rom-com injected straight into your veins. Except this time, you get to call the shots (somewhat)!

    Huge props to YuzuSoft for crafting a game perfectly suited for play on handhelds like the Steam Deck. Being able to carry around this grand tale of sorcery and sisterhood in your pocket is a treat. As Megumi would say, “Maybe this will be the start of something new!”

    If you’re looking for a heartwarming, humor-filled story of a guy and his supernatural squad, Sabbat of the Witch will charm you to no end. Just be warned: you may find yourself wanting to enroll at a magical academy by the time the credits roll. Take a look at our Steam curator page and pick it up while it’s on sale!

    • Story: 7.5/10
    • Gameplay: 7.5/10
    • Art Style: 10/10
    • Spice: 4/10
    • Handheld Compatibility: 10/10

    Sabbat of the Witch weaves a lighthearted yet surprisingly deep story of romance and the supernatural, elevated by endearing characters, gorgeous art, and entertaining vocal performances that make this school-life visual novel a joy to experience on handheld devices.


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