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Reviews Featuring ‘Tsukihime’, Plus ‘Trails Through Daybreak’ and Other Releases and Sales – TouchArcade


Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the SwitchArcade Round-Up for July 5th, 2024. It’s Friday, and freedom has been defeated for yet another year. That means it’s time to look at the remaining Nintendo Switch releases of the week, plus a good bunch of sales coming in and going out. For a refreshing twist, our pal Mikhail also has a few reviews for you to check out. Let’s sally forth and get to the weekend!

Reviews & Mini-Views

TSUKIHIME: A piece of blue glass moon ($49.99)

Many years ago, I played Steins;Gate as my first ever pure visual novel experience and loved it. Since then, I’ve read many across platforms and even found some of my favorite stories in the medium through visual novels. I still love Steins;Gate, but now consider The House in Fata Morgana as the best visual novel. One big blind spot for me was always Type Moon’s Mahoyo and Tsukihime which friends kept praising through the Japanese releases.

It seemed like Tsukihime would just be one of those games that never saw an official English release, but there was hope when Aniplex brought over Type Moon’s Mahoyo as Witch on the Holy Night, which I liked a lot. TSUKIHIME: A piece of blue glass moon (henceforth Tsukihime), the remake, did see an English release worldwide over a week ago, and I’ve played it on Switch and PS5 for review.

Tsukihime‘s remake covers two main routes from the original. I’ve not played the original so will be approaching this release as a new game. I just wanted to get that out there for those who might have played the original at some point before. The two routes here are accompanied by multiple bad ends that all have a worthy payoff in the form of an intermission-like scene with Neco-Arc who everyone familiar with Type Moon knows and loves. I know someone who literally bought Melty Blood Type Lumina just because they added Neco Arc.

Since this is a pure visual novel, I’m not going to get into any story spoilers, and I loved both main routes here across the main and bad ends. I had expected one of the main routes to not hit as hard based on what my friend who played the Japanese release told me, but I ended up liking it almost as much. I was also constantly floored by how massive this production felt as a visual novel. I can’t imagine anything coming close to the budget as a pure visual novel. While the wait is likely going to be very long, to see the rest of the Tsukihime project remade and localized, TSUKIHIME: A piece of blue glass moon is a stunning and essential visual novel that everyone should play. Just be prepared for it not holding back any punches when it comes to blood and gore.

In addition to the main story, Tsukihime has a gallery with music, videos, and more to unlock as well. I’m working towards getting the platinum trophy on PS5 after enjoying everything on Switch already.

While Witch on the Holy Night (Mahoyo) had some issues with its script, I was glad to see none of those issues in Tsukihime. The localization team did a fantastic job here, and it already has seen some fixes for minor issues patched around launch day. Tsukihime with this budget and English localization quality still feels unreal to me.

While the soundtrack is excellent, the voice acting is amazing across the board. I won’t lie. Playing Tsukihime and Witch on the Holy Night after experiencing the Melty Blood games has been equal parts funny and interesting, but I definitely appreciate the fighting games lore more having experienced these stories.

Tsukihime is a very long game, and while my main playthroughs are on Switch, I also played it on PS5 to see how it looked and played there. There’s a definite boost to responsiveness and resolution, but I wouldn’t forego touchscreen and portability with it. If you did want to play Tsukihime on PS5, it is an excellent experience, and better than how it is on Switch docked with instant loading across the board and everything looking gorgeous on my 1440p monitor.

TSUKIHIME: A piece of blue glass moon is a visual novel masterpiece. It was one of the biggest games in the genre that I hadn’t played at all, and I’m glad to have finally experienced it through this remake on both Switch and PS5. Regardless of whether you enjoy Type Moon’s works or are new to the developer, Tsukihime is an essential. -Mikhail Madnani

SwitchArcade Score: 5/5

Tavern Talk ($21.99)

VA-11 HAll-A is one of my favorite games ever, so any game inspired by that is worth my time, and Coffee Talk (with its sequel) managed doing something differently while still giving me a relaxed experience involving making beverages. When I first learned of Tavern Talk and it being similar to Coffee Talk, I knew I had to play it. Tavern Talk is a bit different, but it still managed to win me over with its superb presentation, great character designs, and interesting mechanics.

Tavern Talk begins with you running the Wayfarer’s Inn, regularly visited by colorful and unique adventurers. Your aim is to serve drinks, listen to rumors, turn them into quests, and more as you try and uncover what’s actually going on. As you progress, you decorate your tavern and even add to your menu. The actual drink making is quite simple, but it is elevated by the presentation.

Tavern Talk ranges from excellent looking to just stunning in its environments, character designs, and effects. It also happens to shine on the OLED screen on both my Switch and Steam Deck.

When it comes to audio, Tavern Talk delivered with its soundtrack, but I feel like a little bit of voice acting would’ve gone a long way here. It is a very long game compared to similar releases in the genre as well. It is definitely well-written, and I enjoyed how it properly feels like a blend of Coffee Talk and Dungeons & Dragons, but a few quality of life fixes would also help.

You can adjust (and I recommend you do so) the text size and text speed, but there’s no way to skip dialog or fast forward yet. This would help for replays or in my case where I was playing it on two platforms at once. This isn’t a huge issue, but games like this need more text-related options.

I played Tavern Talk on both Switch and Steam Deck. While it plays well on both, you do get a smoother experience on Steam Deck, and the ability to use the touchscreen. I’m disappointed with no touchscreen support on Switch because I usually play games like this mostly with touch controls. I hope it can be added in a future update, and that we also see some performance improvements to sort the minor sluggish feeling.

In a lot of ways Tavern Talk feels like it would have benefited from more in its gameplay loop and with some voice acting. It does excel in its characters and visuals though.

Despite it not delivering everything I wanted when it comes to the narrative, Tavern Talk is an easy recommendation as a gorgeous and relaxing visual novel style game. If you enjoy Dungeons & Dragons and like Coffee Talk, you need to get Tavern Talk. -Mikhail Madnani

SwitchArcade Score: 4/5

#BLUD ($24.99)

#BLUD from Exit 73 Studios and Humble Games has been on my radar ever since its reveal. I always loved the 90’s Cartoon Network aesthetic, but was curious how the final game would feel to play. After playing it on Steam Deck and more-recently on Nintendo Switch, #BLUD is a very good game that’s a few patches away from greatness.

#BLUD has you taking on the role of Becky Brewster slaying the undead as a new kid in town. I enjoyed the core gameplay loop despite some combat issues because of how gorgeous the world is with its colorful NPCs, the game’s upgrade system, and the in-game social network. As you explore and get into various combat encounters, the issues come to light. I feel like the combat is a tweak or two away from being fixed. I found some hitboxes not very obvious and the dodge not having invincibility frames felt off.

The animation work and designs are definitely highlights, but the production values in general are a lot better than I expected even after the trailer. It is a shame that some aspects feel undercooked right now like the combat. Aside from that, #BLUD runs well on Switch docked and handheld. It suffers from hitching on Switch that gets annoying. There is less hitching on Steam Deck but it is present sadly.

In its current state, #BLUD is worth your time, but a few combat issues hold it back from being truly great. The designs, animations, and writing are definitely highlights, and I found myself pleased with #BLUD after playing it on both Switch and Steam Deck. I hope the few hitching issues can be resolved though. #BLUD runs a lot better than I expected on Switch, and feels right at home on the system. -Mikhail Madnani 

SwitchArcade Score: 3.5/5

Select New Releases

The Legend of Heroes: Trails through Daybreak ($59.99)

This is the big release of today, and I would go so far as to say of the week. The latest in Falcom’s long-running series of turn-based RPGs sees things return to full form after some slightly more mixed entries. Mikhail did his full review of this game across multiple platforms, and while it’s clear the Switch isn’t going to be keeping up to the performance of other platforms, this port is more than good enough by the standards of the console. A nice chunky RPG to get you through these hot summer days.

Cyber Citizen Shockman Zero ($6.99)

We did it, folks. We now have all of the Cyber Citizen Shockman games in English, officially. And we’re ending off with what might be the best of the bunch, the Super Famicom Cyber Citizen Shockman Zero. This was available as a Satellaview game back in the day, but got a physical release in Japan a few years back. It plays quite differently from the rest of the games in the series, being more of a platformer/brawler than a poor Mega Man clone. I’ll have a review of it soon, but I’ve been pleasantly surprised with the game and you might be too.

Taboo Trial ($19.99)

If you like grindy, mindless 3D hack-and-slashing with lots of big numbers popping up constantly, here’s another game for you to try out. It seems to be relatively well-liked in its PC form, so unless the developers biffed the Switch port, this might be one to look into for fans of the aforementioned button-bashing.

Cthulhu Tower ($19.99)

Tower defense, but with a Lovecraft theme. I’m not really sure if there’s anything else to make this different from the million other cheaper games in the genre, but I didn’t look very hard. Not my genre, I’m afraid.

Sea under the sea under the sea ($18.99)

Explore under the sea in a post-apocalyptic future where most of the planet has been covered by water. You’re researching an anomaly in the Black Sea, as part of the seabed has begun to rise. Kind of a low-poly horror-ish affair. Probably hits best if you’re terrified of being deep underwater in a small metal can. That’s everyone, right?

Bouncy Chicken ($4.99)

A puzzle game with ninety stages where your goal is to collect all of the cobs of corn on the screen. You’ll do that by launching a bouncy chicken, and you’re given a limited number of shots on each stage so you’ll have to make them count. It’s fine for what it is, and a decent enough budget pick-up.

Sales

(North American eShop, US Prices)

Despite yesterday having an absolute ton of sales, a good handful more are joining them today. Deals on the Fuga and Sniper Elite series, a nice price on some Kairosoft titles, and a solid discount on the immensely charming shooter Harpoon Shooter! Nozomi. Not too much in the weekend outbox, but give it a look and see if anything grabs you.

Select New Sales

Final Vendetta ($9.98 from $24.95 until 7/11)
Battle Axe ($7.49 from $29.99 until 7/11)
Treachery in Beatdown City ($3.99 from $19.99 until 7/11)
Sniper Elite V2 Remastered ($6.99 from $34.99 until 7/11)
Sniper Elite 3 Ultimate ($6.99 from $34.99 until 7/11)
Sniper Elite 4 ($9.99 from $39.99 until 7/11)
Sniper Elite 4 Deluxe ($14.99 from $59.99 until 7/11)
Erra: Exordium ($15.99 from $19.99 until 7/12)
Treachery in Beatdown City: Ultra ($5.99 from $9.99 until 7/12)
Fuga: Melodies of Steel ($19.99 from $39.99 until 7/15)
Fuga: Melodies of Steel Deluxe ($29.99 from $59.99 until 7/15)
Fuga: Melodies of Steel 2 ($23.99 from $39.99 until 7/15)
Fuga: Melodies of Steel 2 Deluxe ($35.99 from $59.99 until 7/15)
Paradise Marsh ($6.74 from $14.99 until 7/18)
Arcade Tycoon ($11.99 from $19.99 until 7/18)


Sense: Cyberpunk Ghost Story ($5.99 from $19.99 until 7/19)
Lucid Cycle ($2.09 from $6.99 until 7/19)
Violet Wysteria ($8.99 from $14.99 until 7/19)
Phantom Breaker Omnia ($3.99 from $19.99 until 7/19)
Mugen Souls Z ($25.99 from $39.99 until 7/19)
The Prisoner of the Night ($10.49 from $14.99 until 7/19)
Assault Suits Valken ($9.99 from $24.99 until 7/20)
Super Shadow Break Showdown ($5.19 from $12.99 until 7/21)
Alpaca Wonders Why ($1.99 from $3.99 until 7/22)
Hot Springs Story ($3.96 from $12.00 until 7/24)
Zoo Park Story ($6.00 from $12.00 until 7/24)
TV Studio Story ($7.20 from $12.00 until 7/24)
Pool Slide Story ($7.00 from $14.00 until 7/24)
Dungeon Village 2 ($6.00 from $12.00 until 7/24)
Panic Porcupine ($1.99 from $7.99 until 7/24)


Harpoon Shooter! Nozomi ($6.98 from $9.98 until 7/25)
Toridama2: Brave Challenge ($5.59 from $7.99 until 7/25)
Samurai Maiden ($29.99 from $59.99 until 7/25)
Beholgar ($2.99 from $9.99 until 7/25)
TEMPUS ($3.49 from $6.99 until 7/25)
EDF: World Brothers Deluxe ($26.99 from $59.99 until 7/25)
The Hundred Year Kingdom ($6.49 from $12.99 until 7/25)
Xuan Yuan Sword 7 ($35.99 from $39.99 until 7/25)
Kid Tripp ($1.99 from $3.99 until 7/25)
Cosmo Dreamer ($4.10 from $8.20 until 7/25)
Like Dreamer ($5.99 from $11.99 until 7/25)
Astronite ($7.49 from $14.99 until 7/25)
Burst Hero ($7.19 from $11.99 until 7/25)
Teared ($6.79 from $7.99 until 7/25)
Doll Explorer ($8.79 from $10.99 until 7/25)


Lazriel: The Demon’s Fall ($8.02 from $11.47 until 7/25)
God of Light Remastered ($1.99 from $4.99 until 7/25)
Jett Rider ($8.74 from $12.49 until 7/25)
Detective Stella Porta Case ($5.24 from $10.49 until 7/25)
Smoots Pinball ($4.19 from $5.99 until 7/25)
Space Storeship ($2.34 from $4.69 until 7/25)
Love Love School Days ($5.24 from $10.49 until 7/25)
Alchemy Garden ($6.49 from $12.99 until 7/25)
Mechs V Kaijus ($9.09 from $12.99 until 7/25)
Yeah! You Want “Those Games”, Right? ($7.99 from $9.99 until 7/25)

Sales Ending This Weekend

Landflix Odyssey ($3.49 from $6.99 until 7/6)
Rainbows, Toilets & Unicorns ($3.49 from $6.99 until 7/6)
Tiny Little Farm ($1.99 from $9.99 until 7/6)
Xeno Crisis ($7.99 from $19.99 until 7/6)
Nekomin ($8.25 from $15.00 until 7/7)
Sigi ($1.99 from $4.99 until 7/7)
The Forest Quartet ($1.99 from $9.99 until 7/7)

That’s all for today and this week, friends. We’ll be back next week with more new releases, more reviews, more sales, and whatever news catches our eye. I have a lot of work to do this weekend again, I’m afraid. But I should be able to push through the last of it this time, leaving me to spend my next weekend doing different work. Fun! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend, and as always, thanks for reading!



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