Game Info: (Box Display)
- System: PS Vita, PC
- Publisher: Nikkatsu, NIS America
- Developer: Sushi Typhoon Games
- Release Date: Nov 14, 2017
- Rating: T for Teen
- Genre: Strategy
- Players: 1
- Official Website: http://nisamerica.com/games/tokyo-tattoo-girls/
Who it Caters to
What to Expect
At first glance, Tokyo Tattoo Girls might seem a bit daunting. When you start a new game, you’re asked to choose from 6 different girls who will apparently be your companion throughout the story. Each girl has slight advantages and disadvantages that help them in the overall game such as being more defensive based and or focused on attacking. Now you might be asking what do these skills actually do and how do they apply to Tokyo Tattoo Girls’ gameplay? Well that’s where we begin our true journey into explaining what Tokyo Tattoo Girls is truly all about.
Your mission in Tokyo Tattoo Girls is quite simple, take over all of Japan’s 23 wards using your girl of choice. To accomplish this, players must earn respect in all of the areas enough to eventually challenge the ward’s leader and win over that ward for themselves. The issues with this is that obviously no area is just going to allow you to take over and that means you must prove yourself a truly capable leader. This is where the meat and potatoes of Tokyo Tattoo Girls shows off.
Players are given several things they need to micromanage in Tokyo Tattoo Girls. The first is an honor gauge above the left side of the screen which drops as areas go on alert as you begin to evade them. If the honor gauge drops to 0 then it’s game over and you’ll have to load up a save point or restart the game. Avoiding this is crucial as you begin your campaign to take over the 23 wards. Your main job is to let your girl take over places at random and to use strategy cards—which require PM and can’t be spammed as they have a recharge rate—to help stop fighting in areas that turn red, recruit followers—also known as Punks—and ultimately speed up your actions during your campaign. Then there is the fact that you must improve your girl via applying tattoos to their body.
As you gain PM—or protection money—you can apply tattoos onto your girl to increase their influences in the wards. Each tattoo raises up unseen stats such as charisma and their threat level which makes taking over the 23 wards a bit easier by giving you more followers and even making some of the ward leaders appear before you quicker. It’s important to mention that all of the main action in Tokyo Tattoo Girls is done via numbers and not soldiers or avatars. Turf battles—which occur when a ward’s alert goes unchecked—will be the only time you see anything happen beyond the actual meetings with the ward leaders. Once you actually do meet with the ward leaders, don’t expect much here either as all you do is choose from 1 of 3 choices which grant players honor refills depending on their choices. There is also a mini game which involves dice rolling to gain money but that’s something that can be avoided and should be as it’s usually a risk unless you cheat using your strategies card.
Now as you might see, Tokyo Tattoo Girls sounds kind of confusing and that’s the harsh reality of your first 10-20 minutes of gameplay. While there is a lengthy tutorial that can be initiated during any new game, it won’t explain the finer details of Tokyo Tattoo Girls and thus, your best understanding of the game will come from your own failings and success. However, we ourselves found out how to play and once we did, Tokyo Tattoo Girls became quite simple. Then as we got further into Tokyo Tattoo Girls—more so the harder difficulty settings—we began to notice that there was some fun to be had.
Graphically, Tokyo Tattoo Girls looks pretty impressive. Each girl—meaning your 6 companion girls and the 23 ward girls—have different looks and styles to them. Thanks to developer Sushi Typhoon Games’ gaining a traditional tattoo artist known as Koji Tanaka, the tattoos themselves look wonderful and feel almost lifelike. What also helps Tokyo Tattoo Girls is the great voice acting which makes each girl feel different from the rest. That’s why if anything we have no issues with the graphics and sound of Tokyo Tattoo Girls.
Now, let us talk a bit more about some of the other issues we do have with Tokyo Tattoo Girls. While Tokyo Tattoo Girls is fun, if you love strategy games with very little input—even on the harder settings you won’t ever be doing more than pointing and clicking on the map/girls—for those who like more robust strategy games you might find issue with Tokyo Tattoo Girls. Add to the fact that the story in Tokyo Tattoo Girls isn’t at all interesting beyond its prologue and you’re going to find it tough to warrant playing the game multiple times with the different girls unless you just want to go for beating the tougher difficulties. If Tokyo Tattoo Girls had more moments with your companion girls and more means of interaction—more mini games is really what we mean here—then we could have said it was a great game that never gets old. However, as it is, we really do warn players who purchase Tokyo Tattoo Girls to only play in short bursts to really stretch out the enjoyment the best you can. Each campaign takes anywhere from 1-5 hours depending on your skill, difficulty and luck—which plays out with the ward leaders even meeting you—so there is a lot of content overall in Tokyo Tattoo Girls for those who invest themselves into it.
Honey's Gameplay Consensus:
- Great art
- Quirky but interesting cast of characters
- Simple gameplay once you learn all of the components
- The story makes little to no sense
- Gameplay becomes overly repetitive too quickly
- Not enough ways to interact with characters
- In game tutorial isn’t explanatory enough
- Only fun on the harder difficulty settings