My Strange Sis Review

Title: My Strange Sis
Aliases: Моя странная сестра
My Strange Sister
Release date: 2017-09-23
Developer & publisher: Great Chicken Studio

In one of my previous reviews I joked that currently more than half of Russian GDP must come from Patreon porn games, as you just cannot throw a stone into the Patreon's field without hitting a Russian. Most of those projects are very badly done "let's make some quick bucks" ventures with barely legible Renglish machine translation. Of course, there are some exceptions to the rule, who put much more effort into their creations, like Akabur or Great Chicken Studio.

GC Studio is a relatively recent amateur group that first entered the visual novel scene with their game "Manuscript". These days the developers seem to be embarrassed to be reminded about "Manuscript", which they claim is not up to their current standards. "My Strange Sis" is their second completed work, which the devs finished, before jumping onto a more open-ended game based on the Harry Potter universe.
Choose your preferences.
The main attraction of "My Strange Sis" is the customization of the main heroine. You can choose her ethnicity (white, Asian or black), hair colour, eye shape and colour and lip form. Admittedly, the selection is pretty shabby, but it's sufficient for a short visual novel like this, plus the paid Premium edition of the game purportedly has more customization options. Nevertheless, there are two other options that we should pay particular attention to, namely you can choose your sister's personality and how she is related to you.

Yes, boys and girls, I think this is the only game I have ever seen, where you can actually select at the very beginning, if your sister is blood-related to you, or if you are step-siblings. Unfortunately, this particular option is pretty much a disappointment, because from my personal experience it changes all of two lines in the whole game, so it's basically a wish fulfillment without investing too much time in writing different text for both choices. Both incest fetishists and those that hate it might go away disappointed with the way MSS takes care of things.
It doesn't need to be legal for you to do it.
The other option, which regulates your sister's personality is much more important, as it is intrinsically linked to the story progression, and the acquisition of different endings. There are three different personality templates - vanilla, nerdy and goth - selecting one or the other not only presents unique characterization for your sister, but will result in different endings altogether, which means that in order to fully complete the game you have to play through it with all of the different personalities. On the other hand, your sister's looks only influence the aesthetic part of the game, and do not affect the story at all.

You play John, which is a name you can change, if the most generic English name is not to your liking. Three years ago John left his parents' home due to his un-brotherly feelings toward his sister Liz. He spend those years trying to forget her, when she suddenly appears at his doorstep with nary a call beforehand. Apparently Liz broke up with her boyfriend Brian and needs a place to stay, as she is afraid Brian might track her down. Everything's not that simple though - Brian is actually a murderous vampire and your sister is one too, now.
Peeping on your sister... Perv.
The plot is not really that great, as it's basically a short game about the romance between brother and his sister. At first John tries to keep his pent up feelings for Liz bottled inside, but soon they are taking romantic walks in the park, go on a shopping trip and start necking each other. If you manage to hit all the right flags and fill up the little heart at the right-top of the screen, you might get one of the good endings, otherwise you might eventually end breaking up with Liz... or even as her slurpee.

The most pleasant thing about playing MSS is its consistency. Choices matter from the very first one, where you have to decide if you love Liz or only want to fuck her. Actually, neither of those choices is a bad one, and ironically I found it much easier to reach all the best endings with a "fuck her" option, as it seems to fill-up the heart indicator much quicker. However, you should pay attention that you must be consistent in your actions following the said choice. If you chose that you "love" Liz, you must act in a gentlemanly manner, kiss her instead of groping her, and take less liberties with her when she is "asleep". On the other hand, if you chose that you want to "fuck" your sister, you must consistently act in a sexual manner towards her, in order to succeed. And whatever you do, spying on you sister in a shower is a damn bad idea...
Now open the door and let the right one in.
There is not much internal conflict in the game, with all the antagonism coming from Brian. In other words, there are no obstacles for Liz and John to end up in a relationship. Despite their siblings status, that barely comes into play. You just need to be nice to your sister a few times and she will give you a kiss, and then things will proceed in a very predictable direction with both parties engaging in some hot interactive sex. Hence MSS is just a feel-good fantasy and cannot really be taken seriously as a dramatic game about brother-sister romance. But that's okay, as not every visual novel can be a drama.

Eventually, you and Liz will be forced to make a choice regarding her erstwhile boyfriend, once he tracks you lovebirds down. There are three possible ways to take care of the situation: you can try to cure Liz's vampirism, kill Brian or ask Liz to turn you too, in hopes that Brian will be reluctant going against two hostile vampires. If you are a completionist, you will obviously do all three with all the personalities in order to get all the endings. Once again, there is not much conflict, as whichever path you'll select, you'll manage to accomplish your goal virtually without problems. If you kill Brian, you will earn hostility of all other vampires, but they won't come after you, if you get turned into a vampire, you'll have to kill Brian anyway in a fight, and trying to cure Liz results in the most ridiculous solution that the developers pulled out of their asses.
You know what... Shut it, bum!
"GC Studio" paid much attention to the details regarding each of the sister's personalities and gave them unique dialogues and unique thoughts to the protagonist. I appreciated how the developers didn't fall for the trap of making all the Liz's versions too samey, and going through the game with a different personality will result in a different line here or there to make them unique.

Every Liz's personality reacts in a different way regarding different solutions, and some of those reactions can be really funny, but in a bad way. For example, trying to cure the goth personality will eventually result in her turning into a religious nut. WTF?! For that matter, the goth personality is the worst of the three, as it not only borders on parody, but crosses that border and doesn't look back. To clarify, goth personality is written by someone who has never seen a goth in their life and probably took inspiration from "My Immortal", treating it as a gospel for everything "goff"... The other two personalities fare a little better, with "vanilla" probably being the best representation of a young-adult woman.

The side characters are also bordering on parody: the mad prophet is a ridiculous cliche, and it's obvious he has just been inserted in the game to further the "cure" plot. Brian is your usual controlling and possessive jerk with a dash of a murderer, but there are people like that in reality, thus he gets a pass, but the white-haired vampiress serves absolutely no purpose. What is even her role in the VN, if we cannot properly fuck her.
Don't stop now!
The game was initially released in three versions: a public release and two paid ones. Recently "GC Games" scrapped the previous public release and issued the cheaper of the paid versions for free. So, what's new in the new public release? It has an additional sex scene with the white-haired vampiress side character. The scene is not interactive and seems to be done by a different artist, because I tell you, the art for that scene is atrocious. It seems to be parodying the art of the main game with some of the worst body proportions I have ever seen. You know what... it might have been better if the said scene remained a Patreon-exclusive...

With the recent boom of visual novels developed using a 3D rendering software, MSS is a breath of fresh air, as it actually uses drawn 2D art. The art is colourful and quirky, which suits the not-really serious storyline pretty well; there are also plenty of animations to liven-up the looks. At the same time, the soundtrack is kinda boring and gets really repetitive after a while.
Put your sex inside her sex.
It's worth noting that all sex scenes in the game are interactive, i.e. you have to pick options like slow of fast fucking to please your sister. You can tell if she is enjoying herself from her facial expressions, which you really should pay attention to if you want to make her cum. Sadly, I only enjoyed the interactive sex scenes during my first run through the game, as they quickly become a chore during the subsequent runs. Simply put, you cannot skip those scenes. MSS already contains one of the slowest, mind-numbing skip features I have ever seen. Luckily, there is a "quick skip" feature, which brings you directly to the next unseen text. Note, that the feature incorrectly states to bring you to the next choice, but that is not the case.

The thing is, none of the skip features skip the sex scenes, with regular "skip" feature only slightly hastening the action. That is still one of the worst things for completionists like myself, as by the time I was collecting my last endings, I was already royally pissed of at the slowness of this damn game. Add to the fact that there is a smorgasbord of achievements to collect (some of them resulting from hitting dead ends) and I imagine many people would simply drop the game after one or two playthroughs. Dear developers, next time you have a bright idea to include interactive sex scenes, also include an option to fucking skip them on subsequent game runs... thank you!
Pleasuring the victim.
It took me 7.5 hours to complete the game with all the endings collected and all but three of the achievements found, that is with only consulting walkthrough for two of the endings. There is also a game completion tracker, which tells you how much of the game you have completed, but I'm pretty sure it's broken, because by the time I completed the game with the aforementioned statistics, it showed that I'm only 54% through. Simply impossible.

Do not expect some great and poignant read while coming in to read "My Strange Sis", but it's a nice little game with quirky and easy-on-the-eyes art and some sweet brother-sister romance. There is not much else going for it, as it is not either very dramatic, nor does it focus much on the vampire aspect of the story, but I enjoyed playing through it, though my enjoyment diminished with each play session.

Links of Interest

Visual Novel Database
Developer's Patreon
Developer's blog
Game on TF Games Site
Game on
"My Strange Sis" walkthrough

Final Verdict: 61%

1 comment:

  1. Hello! Thanks for the detailed review. I'm one of the authors of this game. Sorry for bad english )))
    In fact, it's a puty that I did not see such a review before we completed this game. Perhaps we could fix some things then. Unfortunately, you get love points during the sexual scenes, so we made them not skipping. But we could come up with something. For example, to allow to skip it with the maximum points after receiving two or three endings.
    In fact, this game was planned very short. Much shorter than it turned out. Initially we wanted to make only a vanilla personality, and only after the first demo we decided to make personality customization. The original plot was about the size of a short story, and we was plan to make a kinetic novel... So don't wait for a deep drama from this. This game has become, in many ways, an educational project for us. We tried many new features of the engine on it, as long as many artistic and director techniques. Now we understand that many things could have been done better. But to understand this we had to do it.
    Thanks again!