I finished it right when the English version released! 😂 It took me way longer than I anticipated since I’ve been told it’s a short game. The story follows a group of Kouga ninjas and their mission in Kyoto. For our heroine Enju, this is her first mission so she’s very excited to do her best. The mission is a success but an unfortunate incident happens and thus comes the end of a peaceful time.
Tokugawa Ieyasu’s loyal retainer and is said to be the strongest ninja in history. At first I kinda squicked at him being twice Enju’s age. And what’s more, he was her mom’s childhood friend. But I ended up liking him and his chemistry with Enju so much I stopped giving a fuck. 😂 ALSO TSUDAKEN’S VOICE IS SO GOOD AND SOOTHING!! I love kuuderes, it feels so satisfying when they finally open up after being cold for so long. And he’s so cute when he’s embarrassed. 😍 His route is one of the less painful ones as everyone lives in the end. I love that Hanzou supports Enju when she said she wants to be stronger and even trains with her. He doesn’t tell her to sit down and be protected. At the end it’s kinda sad Hanzou steps down from being Ieyasu’s retainer because he got injured and can’t wield a sword anymore. But at least he can be with Enju now. Even Ieyasu tells him to go find a wife lol. In most of the other routes, Hanzou is a real bro to Enju and her man, another reason I like him so much.
A famous (infamous?) ninja thief who steals stuff for the poor. I guess you can compare him to Robin Hood. I looked up some info on him and apparently he was born in a samurai family, but I don’t think the game ever mentioned that, or I just forgot. All I remember is that he was childhood friends with Chounii and Hanzou. His route is light-hearted and fluffy compared to everyone else, and he has the most cute CGs. THE DOUBLE HEAD PATTING SCENE WAS THE BEST 😭💕 His introduction is similar to Enishi (KgK) except he’s less annoying lol. But his story isn’t as tragic as Enishi’s. But seeing him pretend to betray Enju was very painful. I was like “NOOO THIS CAN’T BE TRUE!!” His bad end was wild, can’t believe he went full yandere. 😂
At first I thought he would be really serious and cold but he has a soft spot for Enju. He’s just a good ol’ oniichan with no weird gimmicks. After Enju escaped from the dungeon, Chounii goes MIA from the route. Suddenly he just shows up when they’re on the run lol. His route is really tragic, especially at the end when Chounii and Enju find out this whole thing was Hideyoshi’s plan all along. And then he even makes them fight to the death 😭 Fuck that old fart, and his laugh/voice is so annoying. The bad end CG was so beautiful though 😢💔
The younger brother of Gekkamaru who went on a mission for 8 years and finally came back. I already knew he was a yandere so I wasn’t surprised.I didn’t think he was that extreme but then it revealed that he killed Hideyoshi and lied to Enju, that was quite shocking. He didn’t end up my favorite but he is an interesting character. If I had to compare his yandereness to Toma, I don’t think he’s that bad? Depends on what is your level ‘bad’ though. He didn’t even go full yandere in his bad end, it was just a sad ending. This line is in Hanzou’s route, I just felt so sorry for him at that moment. HE JUST WANTS TO BE LOVED!! 😭
I see a lot of western players fawning over him but I just find him annoying and want him to fuck off. He’s always going “ENJU-SAMAAAA!! 😠😠” Meanwhile, there’s some characters similar to Gekka that I do like, Ludwik from Beast & Princess. Maybe it’s a seiyuu bias issue. 😂 It was sad and funny at the same time whenever she’d keep testing him and he’d just reject her. He’s probably a closet perv. At least his route was good enough to make up for his annoying character. The twist at the end was surprising, I knew he’d be the last assassin but not under a spell. I thought he’d be like, “I never cared for you Enju, I was under your father’s orders all this time.”
Also they explain the title and that was one of my favorite scenes. Hideyoshi also compared them to morning glories because they wither easily, so he’s saying them ninjas are nothing to him and are replaced easily. That was a cool analogy but very cruel. He played with them and just throws them away when they’re useless or dead. Her dad is the same too. He didn’t give a fuck about her, only about saving the clan’s face.
After my friend Ciel kept promoting this game nonstop, it happened to be on sale on the PS store so I got it. It’s a great game and would recommend to people who want to play a wafuu game that’s not too long and full of history lessons. The plot is simple but contains some twists to keep you interested. Hyakka is a story of lies, truth and betrayal. At the end of Gekka’s route they explain the title and I really like that part. Always love it when they reference the title in games, books, movies, etc. But since they changed the title in the localization the meaning is kinda gone. Nightshade means secrets, falsehood, witchcraft, etc. So while it is a different flower than the one referenced in Japanese (morning glory), nightshade is still a good choice. I’m curious if they explain the meaning of ‘nightshade’ or just translate the Japanese as it is.
Enju is a great heroine!! I love that she strives to become stronger instead of moping around because she’s not at the level of the other ninjas. I liked her the most in Hanzou’s route because he supported her to improve herself by helping her train. His encouragement is. 💖 There’s some routes where she’s more passive and gets saved often but I still like her a lot. The supporting characters are all great too. I love Kyara, she’s the cool sister character and her interactions with Ennosuke are so cute! I love that side story, she’s so tsun for him lol. AND KASUMI SHE DID NOT DESERVE TO SUFFER SHE’S STILL A BABY. 😭 Depending on the route, characters will change sides. It was interesting but painful to see friends against each other. 😢
I’ve seen some people go for Gekka first. PLEASE SAVE YOURSELF DON’T DO HIM FIRST IF YOU HAVEN’T ALREADY. That goes for Kuroyuki too, even if his route is a different branch, he’s best saved for later. They’ll spoil the plot and might make the rest of the game not as enjoyable, as few others have said. I recommend doing Hanzou > Goemon > Chounii > Kuroyuki > Gekka. Hanzou gives you a nice taste of the plot so he’s a good starter, Goemon is a breather route so it might also be good to do him after Chounii like Ciel said. But since I was curious about him I decided to do him after Hanzou.
The length of the game is perfect and they don’t drag things on for too long, but I wish the endings were longer. The bad ends felt skimmed over, it’s just “I’m dying the end.” No dramatic conversations or long crying sessions lol. Epilogues for the happy ends would have been better too. I was kinda disappointed that the DLC stories weren’t epilogues. Teita’s art was wasted on some of the crappy CGs, lots of close up shots, back of Enju’s head, Enju getting cut off. On the other hand, the battle scenes are well done, with dynamic sprites and all. It’s kinda jarring how the story is well done but some of the other stuff are crappy. I guess they didn’t have that big of budget. The OP sequence had a lot more effort put into it but both ending sequences look cheap, it’s like night and day lol.
The system could really use some improvements. The text would sometimes appear all at once and sometimes slowly even though I never changed the settings. The skip is pretty fast but there’s some unskippable scenes that I already read, so that was annoying. And the most important thing of all: NO REWIND! It was annoying when I’d forget to quick save and then I can’t replay a scene. You can’t quick save during choices but at least you can regular save.
Anyway, Hyakka/Nightshade is a great game and I really recommend it! Steam version is cheaper and even includes Japanese text if you prefer to play in Japanese! But the Vita version is also available if you prefer that, Japanese only though. There’s a bundle with the soundtrack that I highly recommend! The music is really beautiful. ✨ You can also purchase the theme songs via iTunes!