It’s the middle of the week, and Steam has decided that it’s the time to launch a brief visual novel sale (March 3 to March 6, 10 am PST; it ends on March 7, 2 am in Malaysia).
Don’t know what to pick? Don’t worry, we’ve picked out some highly-rated visual novels and personal recommendations to help you out.
Higurashi When They Cry Hou Bundle (RM50.19)
Higurashi is an episodic horror-mystery that takes place in the small countryside town of Hinamizawa. Everything seems peaceful, until a death and disappearance occur one day. Is it a supernatural curse, or is it a conspiracy by the townspeople? Higurashi will keep you guessing.
AI: The Somnium Files (RM105)
Set in near-future Tokyo, The Somnium Files is a science-fiction murder mystery. As detective Kaname Date, you investigate not just physical crime scenes but the dreams of people as you hunt down a serial killer.
Danganronpa 1/2/V3 Bundle (RM77.76)
Another murder-mystery, but there’s a robot bear involved too. Aside from a third-person shooter spin-off, the Danganronpa series consists of whodunnit games where your character and their classmates are trapped in a killing game. Whenever someone dies, it’s up to the player to gather clues and figure out who’s the killer.
Kindred Spirits on the Roof (RM26)
One day, relative loner Toomi Yuna meets two spirits on the roof of her school. They compel her to play “yuri cupid”, leading to a fluffy yuri experience that also has a heartwarming story about making friends and expanding your social circle. Unlike many visual novels on Steam, you don’t need a patch for the softcore 18+ scenes here.
*Get the Full Chorus DLC (RM11.75) if you want full voice-acting (the base game only has partial voice-acting), as well as some extra content.
The House in Fata Morgana (RM23.50)
One mansion, four tragedies. The House in Fata Morgana is a gothic story that has wowed players and critics alike.
Steins; Gate Series Bundle (RM73.80)
A group of friends create a time machine by modifying a microwave. It sounds like a comedy, but the friends later get entangled in a conspiracy involving SERN. Steins; Gate is known for being emotional as heck, and was voted as one of the most tear-inducing games in a Famitsu poll.
*The Elite remake doesn’t seem essential, based on the Steam reviews, so you could alternatively skip this bundle and just get Steins;Gate and midquel Steins;Gate 0 instead.
Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Trilogy (RM34.50)
Be a lawyer and point that finger! Phoenix Wright is a “courtroom adventure” series that has you solving cases and battling to save clients. This is the original trilogy and its 14 episodes.
Wonderful Everyday Down The Rabbit-Hole (RM33.60)
Wonderful Everyday delivers a gripping story with an uneasy atmosphere, multiple mysteries, and various disturbing events. You’ll need this free patch to access it though, as Steam is only selling the first of the game’s seven chapters, which is more of a set-up for the main story.
*The patch also restores the 18+ scenes. Some of these are rather uncomfortable, which adds to the dark story, but they can also feel excessive and overly long. Luckily, there’s a fast forward function.
eden* is a kinetic visual novel (meaning that it’s a linear story with no choices) set in the near future, with music by 5 Centimeters per Second’s Tenmon. It’s a love story between the Sion, an imprisoned, genetically engineered human who was created to save mankind over 100 years ago, and Ryou Haruna, a soldier who’s sent to keep an eye on her.
CLANNAD Bundle (RM67.95)
CLANNAD and its developer Key are well-known names, and the CLANNAD: After Story anime (the events are covered in an unlockable route in the original visual novel) is known for being incredibly heart-wrenching. Enjoy the slice-of-life moments, and prepare tissues for what comes later.