Sacred Eyes Review

Title: Sacred Eyes
Release date: 2013-04-18
English release date: 2013-08-18
Developer: Enuemu
English publisher: Velociraptor Clint Thrust (as a fan-patch)

"Sacred Eyes" is just another among a myriad Japanese erotic RPG Maker games out there. What's different is that it actually has a full English translation available. Good for us, because it's not a bad game.

First of all, let's get the really stinky stuff out of the way. The English translation is only available for an outdated v1.03 version of the game. Currently the game is at v2.01 and includes not a small amount of new content. Moreover, there are at least one new ending available, and considering how underwhelming the original endings were, the new one should be an improvement. Sadly, the person who did the translation never got back to the game in order to keep up to its Japanese updates.
Sleazy priest is sleazy.
The plot of the game is definitely not its strength. During the prologue we see our protagonist Milia being knighted as the Sage Knight - the ultimate holy defender of the Church. Now it's your job to take missions from the Leader of the knights and defend the Church from all of its enemies. The thing I disliked the most was how the game skimps on the background details. We don't learn anything of value about the actual status of the Sage Knight, we know nothing about the position the Church holds in this world, and we only learn about the terrorist group calling themselves the Believers halfway through the game. Actually the term "Believers" is a slight bowdlerization on the translator's part - I think the Japanese game outright called them "Muslims".

Characterization is also almost completely nonexistent. Our protagonist Milia is just as much an enigma to us as any other person - we know nothing about her, other than her devotion to the Church. On the other hand, one of the greatest strengths the game displays, is its Grey vs Gray morality. It becomes quite clear early on that the Church is less pure than it pretends to be, but it just might be the corruption of Father Heinrich that gives this impression. Moreover, while the Believers are more than happy to kill hostages and summon demons, they just basically want to topple Father Heinrich from his position.
Shadowy conspirators.
It comes as no great surprise that eventually the game splits into two different paths with you able to either join the Believers or remain with the Church. I was greatly satisfied by the fact that neither of the paths could be considered good or moral. As the saying goes: "Damned if you do, damned if you don't". However, epilogues were less than satisfying. Basically you kill the final boss, get a few lines of dialogue and suddenly "THE END". I was shocked by such an abruptness and initially thought I have missed something, but alas... That's were the new improved version v2.01 comes in. Not only it gives us more sexy scenes, but also a new ending, which the developer considers a True Ending, and, I suspect, extended epilogues to the other endings. *sigh*
Boss has tentacles. Pretty obvious what is gonna happen to you.
Oh, well, plotwise the game is a disappointment, but its strength lies in the gameplay and the sexy time. "Sacred Eyes" plays just like many other RPGs out there and falls under the same tropes. You defeat enemies, get money and experience, level up, gain more powerful abilities, and can defeat more powerful foes. The game also doesn't employ the tired and overused Gameover Rape routine. Only when defeated by bosses are you ravished and pleasured. I'm also an opponent of random encounters and it was pleasing to realize that all the enemies are clearly seen moving on the field. The fight is initiated once you touch the enemy and you can opt to escape (which always works in this game). You can also collect body parts from the fallen foes and use them to forge weapons and shields.
That's what I call a service.
The game also keeps track of three statuses: Lewdness, Faith and Guilt. Lewdness is increased by doing sexual things. The higher the value the more extreme acts you can engage in. Surprisingly, the game rewards you for not doing lewd things, or more precisely, for not losing your virginity. If you remain chaste and stay with the Church, you will acquire the most powerful accessory in the game "Chastity Ring". The highest value of Lewdness you can reach without losing your virginity is 99. I reached a maximum of 197 when on the Believers' path. I don't think it's possible reaching 200, as I'm pretty sure I got all the available events.

The sexy CGs are pretty good looking and there are lots of them. The fetishes are wide and varied: from simple blowjobs, anal sex or gangrape to golden showers and even bestiality. "Sacred Eyes" has a repertoire for all tastes and distastes.

The second status is Faith and is basically required for getting the ultimate weapon "Holy Blade". Here's an interesting thing, though. You have to lose your virginity to increase your Faith and you cannot use "Holy Blade" on the Believers' path. Do you realize what that means? Yes, you have to choose to either get "Chastity Ring" or "Holy Blade" - you cannot get both. I see what the developer did here and I approve.
Quest items are readily available to you.
The third status is Guilt (which you gain by committing crimes) and it's the least useful. You are required to have a certain amount of Guilt in order to qualify becoming a Believer and high Guilt opens more lewd options, but I feel that the game could have easily discarded this status without losing anything.

The translation itself is quite good. I was almost afraid it will just be a machine translated nonsense, but luckily it was not so. There are a few typos here and there, but nothing major. The text is also prone to sometimes running out of the right border, but it doesn't happen frequently and is not a big issue.

All in all, "Sacred Eyes" is quite a decent RPG with nicely integrated sexual content, but it really suffers in the plot department. If not for the moral ambiguity of the tale, the plot would be a complete shit. The game is quite short - I finished it in five hours while writing a walkthrough. I'm pretty sure you can beat it in half that time if you're in a hurry, so there is no reason not to try it and judge for yourselves.

Links of Interest

Developer's blog
Buy a digital Japanese version (v2.01) on DLsite (not patch compatible)
Download a patch compatible version v1.03 (Google)
Download an English patch
Download "All Decrypter" and read patching instructions
Sacred Eyes walkthrough (written by me)
Game discussion on ULMF forums

Final Verdict: 62%

1 comment:

  1. Found that when in naked state talk to both boys Romero & Pippa at the fountain leads to 2 scenes both get points,amusing & fun to play ,longer more to do would be good ,overall a good example of RPG maker based game