Have you played Hatoful Boyfriend, the pigeon dating sim that not so much derails as jumps the tracks, gathers speed and leaps into orbit, transforming into a multi-limbed organic space vessel bringing peace and love to the universe? No? Then you’ll be missing a lot of context for Holiday Star, the standalone Christmas-themed expansion now available on Linux, Mac, PC, PS4 and Vita.
Not that it would have helped you anyway, you joyless crustacean. Down a few cans of Lighten The Heck Up™ and enjoy the ride as I run down some things that happened to me while playing. Spoilers for the first two chapters follow.
I admired the localisation team’s capacity for nailing down my exact personal conversational tone.
I asked some pointed questions about the weird creatures with beaks and legs, in a game where most characters are so very definitely actual birds that their depictions are real-world photos.
I forgot my questions when I discovered the twins and I are kindred souls.
I was greatly moved when the po-po shut the twins down. I haves been escorted out of multiple stores, usually for setting off everything noisy in the toy aisles and trying out the tiny kids bikes, because we live in an unjust universe.
I discovered and immediately adopted a fantastic new saying, which I now pull out whenever somebody wants me to pay attention to something I don’t care about.
I delivered a scathing burn for which Sakuya required gallons of aloe vera lotion.
I remembered how much I wanted to bang this character and then how if you do manage to get his “good” ending he chops off your head and puts it in a jar and then dies in a shoot out with the po-po. I wondered whether I should go into therapy again.
Yuuya did a great impression of a product you rub on door hinges when they start to creak, or perhaps for pouring into pans prior to shallow-frying.
I decided that if I were as rich as Sakuya I would buy a dictionary with all the words in it.
Shuu used the same excuse I pull out whenever Pat asks me what I was doing all afternoon when it definitely wasn’t murders.
A segment of dialogue caused to me imagine a backstory for the po-po: retire from the gull police force. Set up a gull security company called Gull Guard. Spend gull hours agonising at your gull desk over a suitable gull rhyme for your gull introduction quip. Shout at your gull children when they try to enter the gull office then wallow in your gull guilt until your gull wife tells you to come to gull bed.
Sakuya started talking like someone who spends too much time on circle-jerk subReddits.
The Christmas tree thieves turned out to be the twins, who then arrived in a tank to steal our tree.
I punched a tank. The other option was to hit it with a mailbox. So.
A pigeon repeatedly addressed or referred to me by my surname. The only other people who regularly use my surname are commenters. (“Hillier is obviously terrible at games”. “Hillier should be fired.” “I don’t care about Hillier’s opinions but here’s an 1,800 word retort.”) Don’t give Sakuya the benefit of cultural doubt here. He’s not Japanese; he’s just an arsehole.
I gave voice some very true to life sentiments, except that in reality I embrace capitalism on any holiday involving ham.
My pigeon boyfriend bagged me out for wearing a snuggie.
I told my pigeon boyfriend to get fucked because snuggies are great and he’s a pigeon so, you know: not exactly a world expert on clothes.
My civilised mask slipped a little bit when faced with the prospect of attending a geek convention.
My pigeon boyfriend repeatedly dressed up as a magical schoolgirl, and eventually so did I.
A villain attacked me with a machine powered by the passion of fanboys, and then was defeated because they tried putting fangirls in there, and the fandom couldn’t agree on anything.