Hatoful Boyfriend ReviewKatrina Hummel
Hatoful Boyfriend is a soft otome doujin game developed by manga artist Moa Hatos doujin circle PigeoNation Inc. It started out as an April fools joke flash game in 2011. It gained popularity and was followed up by a demo and then full commercial release by October 2011. An English version was released in February 2012. The game is an interactive text based visual novel that follows certain plot lines based on what choices the player picks and what subjects you study. The main story follows you; the player character who is the only human attending St. PigeoNations Institute, a school for gifted birds. Youre on a version of earth where pigeons have gained intelligence and become... Sort of sapient.
As for the plot.... Youre just kinda living through a year of high school. The general plot stays the same until you get close to the ending to whatever pigeon youre trying to woo. The actual ending for each bird are pretty funny! They all come out of no where and I constantly had to stifle giggles from imagining these pigeons doing these ridiculous things. A few of the endings took me by surprise with their seriousness, and ability to make me sad when there was so many other silly ones. It was fun to see which birds were tragic and which were just funny. Apparently there is also a secret route called Bad Boys Love that opens with a pretty big shock, and youre on a mission to find out the conspiracies surrounding the school which led to this shock.
These pigeons are the feathered incarnations of moe and constant character tropes in anime and games. With the exception of Okosan, hes just... Obsessed with running and pudding... I stopped trying to figure him out hah.
The funniest part of the game was definitively the blend of real life pigeon photos. When they are wearing some special costume, there is just 2d clothes drawn over the pigeons, its pretty great. At the start it shows the pigeons how they would look like as a human. That art is really pretty! And hot..... I might be crushing on a pigeon... Help....
Honestly after a while I muted the music and just listened to pandora while I played, it got really repetitive. Especially after playing through your 5th route.....
Overall it was pretty great! Honestly Ive had the game for a while, but I play it on and off. I get so bored with it, it feels really grindy and doesnt have a very good interface. BUT it doesnt take long at all to get through a route, and thank goodness for that fast forward button! It did give me a problem where even if I saved, it wouldnt let me load from a save, so I couldnt take a break in the middle of a route. Other than that it was alright! Its a couple of good laughs, but I wouldnt pay full price for it. If you feel like youve sunk low enough to date a pigeon, head on over to steam!
Disclosure: We are provided copies of games from the game companies for some games that we review.
"Hello! I'm Katrina, a senior in college and major in Japanese. My interests include anime and Japan, but recently also drawing and guitar. I'm looking forward to doing a lot of anime reviews!"
About the Author: Katrina Hummel
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