Steam’s having an anime sale this weekend, and two of favourites of mine – A Kiss for the Petals: Remembering How We Met and Kindred Spirits on the Roof – are in it. Both are yuri visual novels, meaning that they’re visual novels which revolve around girl x girl relationships, and I’ve had the urge to write about these two titles for a while (because I’m a little bit of a yuri fanboy and I enjoyed these two greatly).
After spotting both of them in the sale, I felt like acting on that urge and ended up writing reviews for the both of them consecutively. They’re written more for self-gratification and self-practice admittedly, but if you stumble upon them and are a fan of yuri visual novels (or just yuri/visual novels), I hope you find them helpful and enjoyable to read. I’ll appreciate helpful feedback as well.
So, shall we begin?
A Kiss for the Petals: Remembering How We Met was released on Steam last year, and is the latest entry in the popular Sono Hanabira series. Each of the titles in the main series revolve around one or more couples in St. Michael’s School for Girls, and Remembering How We Met is no exception, telling the story of how fan-favourite couple (I’m not well-versed in Sono Hanabira-related stuff, but that’s what the description says) Risa and Miya met. It was originally released for Android and iOS, and is the only all-ages entry in the main series (all the others have, erm, very NSFW content).
Remembering How We Met is about the hard-working and responsible Miya reminiscing about her initial meeting and acquaintance with her partner Risa in their freshman year, as well as how the laid-back but intelligent Risa became intrigued with Miya. It’s also largely about Miya trying to find and get Risa to stop skipping class, and later to drag her to committee meetings for an upcoming “Tea Party”. There’re some parts that take place in the present, but there’s no significant plot that takes place during that time period.
The story is alright, but it can get a bit repetitive with Miya constantly chasing Risa around. And since it’s about how they met, but not how they fall for each other or get together, I couldn’t really figure out where what direction or conclusion the plot was leading towards at first, making the story feel a bit aimless and lacking development (the latter is especially true for Miya’s background/circumstances back home, which is only touched on slightly – I believe it’s explained properly in an earlier installment). It’s not terrible, but there’s not much to gain from it.
My enjoyment mainly stemmed from the interactions between the two characters (the VN is fully-voiced by the way, and the voice-acting is nice and suitably cute, leading to further satisfaction), and perhaps this – and not the plot – is the focus of the visual novel, with the story only serving as the catalyst for these interactions. The writing isn’t phenomenal, but it’s great fun to read their back-and-forth moments, especially with the contrast between the more energetic and usually exasperated Miya and the calm and relaxed Risa with her witty remarks (I think they’re witty. My memory is a bit fuzzy unfortunately :/). Their present-day interactions are of course different, given that they’re already a couple at this point, and substitute their arguments and acquaintance-level conversations with more intimate dialogue, teasing and yuri moments that – while nothing extraordinary – made me fist-pump. I would have jumped in joy too, but I was in class at the time.
The art is nice and cute, while the soundtrack is… well it seems that my memory has failed me again, but I wouldn’t be off the mark saying that the music is mostly of the lighthearted and upbeat kind. It complements the atmosphere and dialogue, but isn’t really memorable or catchy.
Overall, I found it to be an enjoyable experience. Sure, there’s not much that’s noteworthy about the plot, and as a side story it seems to be more of the fan-service kind than one that delves into territory unexplored by the main entries, but yuri moments and fun character interactions make this well worth a look if you’re into the wonderful world of yuri.