Hitomi: My Stepsister (PC) review
"And so it is that I should discuss the sex scenes. After all, they’re your reward for playing. You’re certainly not working at the project to increase your reflexes. And because it’s impossible to not finish the game (the most taxing project is to decide which of the two options will lead to the sex scene you most want or haven’t seen before), the only satisfaction comes from the nudity."
Imagine that you’ve lived alone with your father for years, after your mother left the both of you to find a better life for herself. Imagine that you spend your evenings studying for classes at the university and eating frozen dinners while you stare moodily at falling rain and feeling sorry for yourself. Now, to complete the image, imagine that your name is Takahiro Maejima. If you can put yourself in that role, you’re ready to experience the opening sequence of Hitomi: My Stepsister. But are you ready for the rest of the game? I certainly wasn’t.
Takahiro starts out a nice enough guy. It’s easy to care for him at first, because he’s the everyday student who just longs for a better life and isn’t sure how to go about achieving it. Then destiny dumps the solution on his lap in the form of a sexy girl named Hitomi. She is to be his sister, he finds. Or rather, his stepsister. His father is marrying a woman named Yoko. The family dynamic is going to change irrevocably from anything Takahiro knew in the past, and you’ll be along for the ride.
As soon as Yuki left, I forcibly put a small egg-shaped vibrator, usually called a ‘rotor,’ in her pussy.
Some people might do pretty well with a suddenly-extended family unit. They might use the opportunity to grow as individuals. They might learn more about their new family members and their past in an effort to live in harmony. Unfortunately, Takahiro is not such a person. His token interest in happy life at home disappears within a night or two as he gives way to his raging libido.
Because as the player you have no choice but to experience the game through Takahiro’s eyes, you’ll very soon feel even hornier than you actually are. Every sentence a girl drops is a potential lead-in to some hot sex. When you walk down a hallway, you could well find someone masturbating at the other end, and if you do there’s not much you can say to avoid some steamy sex a short time later.
Yuki is pressing her tits on my arm, in a neighborhood with no one around.
The setting in Hitomi: My Stepsister is rather odd. Perhaps it’s because everything takes place in Japan, but the locations you’ll experience don’t really ring true to me. For one thing, there doesn’t seem to be much of anyone around. Besides your father—who appears only briefly at a few key junctures in the game—and a wandering businessman or two, you’re mostly alone with three animated females. The first is of course Hitomi, the focus of the game. Next, there’s her attractive mother. And finally, there’s a girl named Yuki that you’ve been in love with for quite awhile.
Because of the limited number of people you’ll encounter, it often feels like you’ve been dropped in the middle of an otherwise empty world. If Yuki proposes that you have sex on your desks after class, you’ll protest that someone might find you. Then you’ll have crazy sex with her while she screams and has her orgasm. Why? Because this is a hentai game, and the only way something will interfere with sex is if it means there’s the potential to add more bodies to the sweaty mix.
Even in those rare cases where someone is nearby, none of the characters seem to care. Yuki is an exhibitionist at heart, so she’s not afraid to swap spit in a crowded school hallway. Hitomi is shy to a perplexing extreme (one that is explained poorly at the end of one possible set of events), but mostly you’ll just run into her at home where there’s little risk of peeping eyes. So as I said, there’s not much fear of interruption.
My cock is now a raging monster.
Unfortunately, there’s not much fear of actual gameplay. This is, after all, a hentai game. What that means is that the focus is on sex, sex and more sex. And when that’s done, the characters will be thinking about sex.
Because of this focus, the game’s interface is rather limited. Though you’ll explore a few artistically-rendered environments such as various rooms within your house (including a bathroom, a living room and some bedrooms) at various times of the day, you won’t really have any chance to interact with them. Clicking on portions of the picture could have resulted in tiny details being revealed. Instead, anywhere you click on the screen just serves to make the action proceed.
Much of what happens in the game isn’t even illustrated, either! The attractive backgrounds remain static, and you’ll sit through long descriptions of the rooms and the people within them, or of the emotions, or of how your penis feels inside your pants. Sometimes you’ll see pictures of a girl (or more) laid over the background, and sometimes you’ll see one of around eighty different frames of animation dedicated to the various sex scenes.
Honestly, the majority of the experience involves just watching as events unfold, and clicking as necessary. You’ll read long, drawn out descriptions of how Takahiro feels about events, then something minor will happen and he’ll wax poetic all over again. While this does make his emotions feel more sincere, there are times when you just won’t care. This is especially true of subsequent playthroughs, when you’re just trying to get a different ending. Perhaps the most telling thing of all is the fact that (even on your first trip through), you can set it so that the game rapidly cycles through clips right up to those few instances where you must choose between one of two options to progress the story.
And speaking of plot, well, some of it can be downright repulsive. You won’t have progressed far in the game before you get to start deciding whether or not you want to steal your stepsister’s panties from the laundry hamper, for example. Worse, there are times when your two choices are both either cruel, or the result of cruelty you inflicted on your new sibling in the past. I don’t want to spoil anything, in case you actually enjoy plots where the hero is a self-centered ass who derives pleasure from torturing women and turning them into his slaves, but… that’s exactly what happens if you follow the longest plot arc to its conclusion. Takahiro likes his sex and he likes it crazy.
My sexual beast is now released, and it’s rising toward its zenith.
The thing is, Takahiro isn’t the only one who likes crazy sex. The women in his life seem to appreciate it, too, despite their demeanor. The personalities that are revealed also depend based on the few choices you make throughout the game. The point of just about every plot arc is this: women actually want sex, even if they don’t realize it immediately. And if your name is Takahiro, an addendum is appropriate: they all want sex with you. Every last one of them.
And so it is that I should discuss the sex scenes. After all, they’re your reward for playing. You’re certainly not working at the project to increase your reflexes. And because it’s impossible to not finish the game (the most taxing project is to decide which of the two options will lead to the sex scene you most want or haven’t seen before), the only satisfaction comes from the nudity. Fortunately, there’s plenty of that to go around.
Sexual exploits are not detailed in any sort of animated form. Instead, they’re restricted to carefully-drawn images that really focus on what matters. You will be intimately familiar with what Takahiro sees. If a girl is straddling him and he’s telling you her nipples are hardening in the cool atmosphere, that’s what the drawing will depict. Such descriptions take turns with repeated references to your pecker, to the girl’s honey pot, and to a bunch of other names that mean the same basic thing.
If you like variety in your sex, there’s that too. Mostly it will just be Takahiro and the lady of his choosing. Sometimes it won’t be, particularly once he hooks up with Yuki. You’ll see ‘doggy style’ and ‘missionary’ adventures. You’ll see your girl tied up for your pleasure. If there’s a position you can think of, it probably happens here. Not only that, but the locations are also switched up constantly, just so there’s a sense of danger to make things all the more exciting. The execution is generally quite good, and the outcome arousing. If you’re the type who will ever find your pants bulging as a result of animated women, this is the game that will do it for you. It’s just a shame that half the scenes seem to involve rape or rough sex.
When I look at her, she’s already half-assed naked and she’s playing with herself.
The rape really is a bummer. More distressingly, it seems to be a heavy focus throughout much of the game. I don’t know about you, but I’m not the sort of guy that likes to watch a girl squirm because she’s in pain, or embarrassed. The game tries to appease your moral side by having Takahiro wonder if he’s doing the right thing, and by showing him feeling remorse between domineering assaults on Hitomi’s innocence. Even so, there’s just too much of the game devoted to this dark side. Someone out there thinks horny male gamers want to see women get raped.
Thankfully, not every scene is menacing, and not every encounter involves an unwilling female. Takahiro’s is cursed by that overabundance of horny females I mentioned, and they dominate the other half of the plot twists you’ll encounter. The developers really seem to be trying to please everyone here.
Something else they try to do is keep you playing. As you experience scenes in the game, they are unlocked for a gallery of sorts that you can view at your leisure, all without frustrating interruption from those plot strands. Not only that, but there’s a flow chart you can access that reminds you what choices you’ve made in the past, and what sex scenes resulted. For the horny completionist, this is a definite boon.
Ultimately, the same might be said of the entire game. Hitomi: My Stepsister is not a game for rocket scientists. You don’t have to think to conquer it. You just have to be patient enough to read through lots of descriptions about sex and the mysteries of women and teen angst. If you’re happy to endure that and also want to see attractive drawings of naked women interspersed throughout, you’ve just found your game. And remember, she’s not really your sister. That makes it okay to have sex with her.
Staff review by Jason Venter (March 17, 2005)
Jason Venter has been playing games for 30 years, since discovering the Apple IIe version of Mario Bros. in his elementary school days. Now he writes about them, here at HonestGamers and also at other sites that agree to pay him for his words.
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