Sometimes, you come across a certain kind of game that is unabashed in its theme. It knows exactly what kind of game it is, and there is no shame at all. Sakura Succubus is one such series. After all, what more can you expect from a rated M anime visual novel that is called Sakura Succubus? There is no beating around the bush or putting up any pretenses. This is a game about cute anime girls who have an intense interest in the main character and will stop at nothing to get him under their grasps. But is that experience worthwhile?
You play as Ogasawara Hiroki, a photojournalist for the Sakura Daily. He’s been tasked with taking pictures of the current top idol, Ikue Ayu. Things go downhill as his train is delayed, resulting in him being late for the concert and not being able to take any pictures. His night goes from bad to worse as he ends up breaking his camera too, but just as his luck has hit rock bottom, he meets what could only be described as his guardian angel, Wakatsuki Marina, who offers to help him out.
The story beats are very straightforward in Sakura Succubus. Every girl that Hiroki seems to run across is a succubus, all of whom are attracted to his irresistible scent. Succubi are commonplace on the Earth, with several popular figures being succubi themselves.
There are three main girls that Hiroki will spend time with in Sakura Succubus: top Japanese idol Ayu, business woman Marina, and social media influencer Cosmos. Each woman has her own personality shining in her own way. Since Sakura Succubus pulls its inspiration from anime in general, there are plenty of tropes to take in such as tsunderes, airheads, harem plotlines, the main character being incredibly irresistible, and so many more. While there are hints of attempts to give some deeper character to these women, the game heavily relies on their looks and trope-heavy personalities to pull you in.
This is a rated M visual novel, which means explicit content is afoot. However, keep in mind that this is a rated M visual novel on a Nintendo system. Therefore, there is no nudity in this game. In fact, explicit sex scenes are not available for purchase and can’t be patched in with this version. Since those scenes are completely removed from the game, there are several jarring cuts in their place. That being said though, there is still some heavy petting that is teased moments before those sex scenes, if that is your thing.
Sakura Succubus is a kinetic visual novel where you have very little choice in how the direction of the game goes. There are a few choices that can be made, but those mainly affect what Hiroki is saying. There is no choosing to date one of the girls, and no matter what you say, the story plays out the same way.
For those unfamiliar with this subgenre within the visual novel genre, “kinetic” means that the story plays out exactly the same no matter how many times you replay the game. That being said, there is very little reason to replay through Sakura Succubus after your initial playthrough. You collect all of the CG art just from playing through the game once. Of course, an entire playthrough will only take about two to three hours to complete, so it’s not that hard to come back to, if you ever did get the feeling to play this game multiple times.
The main draw for Sakura Succubus is the art. Every girl in the game looks really cute, to say the least. The art style is one that you would probably see for most anime projects and the colors are nice and vibrant. And of course, every CG is filled with fanservice of some kind. Whether it’s breasts or thighs, the game knows what its players are looking for and aims to deliver.
Everything else art-related is a bit more muted. The backgrounds look nice and clean, not taking away from any of the characters at all. The UI leaves much to be desired, giving off a feeling that a default UI builder was used instead of creating something a bit more unique. The text is also a bit on the small side, especially compared to the character names.
Music and Audio
The music is less impressive. Truthfully speaking, all of the music is forgettable, easily blending into the background. The mixing seems a bit off for the music, because it was a lot louder than expected when first booting up the game. There are quite a bit of piano and orchestral pieces scattered throughout Sakura Succubus, and I never really thought any song in particular was outstanding. Still, they did all fit in with their respective scenes.
As for voice acting, there is none at all with this game. Given the cheap price tag, that does make sense, but at the same time, it would have been a nice touch.
Sakura Succubus pulls very little punches with this title. You have a short visual novel with cute girls who all want to hook up with the main character. It’s filled with plenty of CG art, and each girl gets her moment to shine in the story. But of course, there are downsides. If you’re not a fan of kinetic novels, then this really isn’t the game for you. If you’re looking for really explicit scenes, you won’t find that with this version of the game. And if you’re looking for a substantial visual novel, you only really get about two hours or so.
If all that sounds fine to you, then Sakura Succubus is okay. The characters, while a bunch of walking tropes, are cute. The art is nice to look at. The main character, while prone to repeating himself multiple times in a row, is tolerable. I enjoyed the two hours of game time. It does make me curious about the other entries in the Sakura Succubus series and whether they get better or remain much of the same.