Video Game Review – Hatoful Boyfriend

Release Date: September 4th, 2014
Developer: Mediatonic, Hato Moa, The Irregular Corporation
Publisher: Devolver Digital
Format: PC Game
First playthrough time: 1 hour

All endings play time: 9.5 hours total

Major Pros:

  • Pigeons
  • Lots of unique endings
  • Unlockable bonus story includes all characters and ties up all loose ends
  • Well laid story you can explore across multiple character arcs

Minor Pros:

  • “Fast-Forward” button included for skipping dialog you’ve already seen
  • “Full” endings for some characters lets you see “what happened afterwards”

Major Cons:

  • Save files often corrupted on my machine
  • Beginning section where it asks your name, etc. could’ve been a one-time ask that was changeable in the option menu

Minor Cons:

  • Bonus story was unexpectedly long compared to the other stories and could’ve been trimmed a little
  • A lot of dialog and it can be a little hard to tell who’s talking without constantly reading the textbox name
  • Pigeon images could’ve been higher resolution
  • “Combat” scenes (while fun) where a little clunky and unclear what the numbers meant

I’ve never played a dating sim before, but I’m not sure how much this represents the genre. It’s a little bit more like an adventure story with romantic touches of varying degrees in each arc. But then again, all the other characters are birds so you can’t really take it too seriously. It starts out simple enough just going to school, but just about every ending turns into weirdness. In a good way however, although a couple endings become disturbing and the bonus story for unlocking all the other endings is madness (but very interesting). In general I wouldn’t recommend this game for anyone wanting a light-hearted dating sim, though it has some light hearted moments. The only change I would make to this game would be if the dialog boxes could change color or otherwise indicate who’s talking because it can get confusing in multiperson-pigeon conversations or before you’ve memorized everyone’s names.

Find this game at the publisher’s website or on Steam.

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