The idea we are alone in the universe is a scary concept. There are billions of planets, yet we are the only “intelligent” life forms! This doesn’t sit right with me. Equally, the idea of aliens petrifies me. If we made contact with them, would they be friendly, or would it be the end of life as we know it? Angels With Scaly Wings runs with this idea and takes it on a weird and sexual tangent. The concept was odd and made me grimace throughout.
Developed by Radical Phi and published by Ratalaika Games. This visual novel focuses on a promiscuous group of dragons who live in an alien world. They differ from us greatly, but yet, there is something oddly familiar about their ways, the planet they live on, and how they interact with each other. An extraordinarily large story enables you to; view up to thirteen different endings, interact with five dragons, and alter your relationship with anyone you meet.
Angels With Scaly Wings is a dating sim with a beastly twist.
Now, I have read many visual novels and have enjoyed, and endured some brilliant and terrible ones that fall into the dating sim category. Usually, I dislike the over-sexualised approach that many of these books take. Little about them appeals to me, and the lack of emotion, realism, and crude writing style usually put me off.
So when I’m offered a visual novel about romancing fantasy creatures from another universe, I was understandably cautious about taking the project on. Reading a book about horny teens on their summer vacation is one thing. But being forced to endure a tale of meaty dragon shlongs and choosing which scaly lover is right for me is another thing altogether. Putting my concerns to one side, I jumped into this odd setting, hoping to be proven wrong.
The tale opens with a straightforward Sci-Fi concept. A portal to another world has been discovered, powering this odd technology allows mankind to communicate with the mysterious creatures on the other side. As Earth cannot sustain the power supply for this gateway, a volunteer must travel to the other side and a man known as Reza Izquierdo steps up. Bridges are built, and trade deals are struck, but another person must venture through the portal to act as an ambassador for Earth. That person is you, and this is where the story begins.
A tale of deceit, and disturbingly sexy dragons!
I’ll try to not spoil the plot for you, but Reza isn’t all he seems. He is a deceitful man, and his actions are the catalyst for your relationships with each dragon. The story takes many twists and turns and relies heavily on your interaction with each character. No matter where the plot goes, it always falls back to its core concept. Angels With Scaly Wings is effectively a dragon pornographic novel. The aim of the game is to attract, and bed as many flying lizards as possible! You may think “attracting a dragon, won’t be easy!” Sadly, these mythical beasts have no shame and having known you for only two days, they want to get it on. Yep, human and dragon mating is apparently a thing.
Once you accept the inevitable dragon loving, things look up, but sadly the game is laced with smut and innuendos. The constant use of teenage level imagery and suggestive phrases was tiresome. Most of the time it was met with a roll of the eyes, and a heavy exhale of breath. To make matters worse, the normal descriptive writing that does so well to paint a picture of the landscape, or sell the emotion of a scene, lets us down at the vital moment. When you decide to go to fourth base with your newfound lover, there is no firework moment, no picture of the hideous act, and no descriptive text. I’ll never know the sexual prowess of my scaly friend, and I guess I should be grateful for small mercies.
Interlaced stories, and a land of secrets.
What was fantastic was the interlaced stories created by Radical Phi. Each playthrough is linked with the others you have experienced previously. It was great that each new element added depth to the plot you have already lived through. You can slowly build a picture of the creatures you are talking to, and how each of them influences the other.
When you removed the romance portion of the gameplay, you experienced a wonderful detective element that distracted from an overbearing sexual theme. Investigating mysteries allowed you to visit different locations, and to interact with many characters. What surprised me was how much these interactions impacted the main story. If you pick the wrong option, this could have catastrophic bearings on friendships that have already been formed. Yet, the correct choice isn’t always clear, and mistakes are made regularly. This can frustrate you easily, but if you aim for the one that either charms or flirts with the dragon, then you know you are on to a winner.
Angels With Scaly Wings is well written until you get to the key concept…..romance!
On the whole, it is a well-written game with an unusual approach. The overarching storyline is interesting, will hold your attention, and will make you want to complete each investigation. However, when you look at the “dating” portion of the game, the writing leaves a lot to be desired. When this is the key concept of this title, you expect it to grab you from beginning to end. But sadly it does not.
Every moment is cheesy, creepy, and feels like it was trying too hard. Maybe I didn’t get where it was going, but every time it got to the point of no return, I’d cringe in anticipation of what was about to occur. I’m no prude. It simply appeared that everything was forced, and unnecessarily crude.
A simple presentation.
Neither the graphics nor the audio lifts this game. Angels With Scaly Wings uses a simple art style to present its story. Still images combined with basic animation choices help to bring the story to life. Dragons lounging around with their come-on eyes, a variety of locations, and easy-to-read text make this a novel that is nice to look at, if not a tad weird to play.
The audio takes a much more minimalist approach. With little in the way of music and limited sound effects, this will be one you’ll either love or hate. I liked it, as it helped me focus on the story, and I could concentrate on the many investigations you undertake. Now, I’m aware many gamers enjoy a good soundtrack, and if that is your thing, it sadly lacks any immersive tunes and will leave you wanting.
A big story with plenty to draw you back in.
Unlike many of my recent visual novels, Angels With Scaly Wings fails to use mini-games. So, other than the occasional dialogue choice, you have little to do. A tutorial flashes up at the start, but fans of the genre can ignore that. For gamers who are in a rush or those who wish to skip already read dialogue, you can fast forward, or rewind as much as you wish. This feature allows you to accelerate your progress, allowing extra playthroughs to be completed much quicker than your first attempt.
With so many unique endings, it would be wrong to assume this has no replay value. With lots of different finales, handfuls of characters, and many options to select, this will keep your interest piqued. A large achievement list can be completed easily with a walkthrough. Purists, however, will struggle to have this done in under twenty hours.
Angels With Scaly Wings and its pornographic weren’t for me.
I was always questioning how much I’d enjoy my time with Angels With Scaly Wings. Sadly, I found the plot to be contrived, silly, and full of unnecessary smut. When the plot steered away from the “romance” it was much more interesting. It had a better writing style and allowed you to focus on the characters. Unfortunately, it didn’t tick all the boxes for me, but I can see why people would like it. If you fancy an unusual dating sim, then buy your copy here! Can you complete the trade deal and find love with a dragon you’ve only known for two days? Remember to be on your best behaviour, after all, you are the ambassador for Earth.