Ratalaika Games are famous for porting mobile games and other indie titles across multiple platforms. Another thing they are well known for is that many of their games have Platinum Trophies which are very achievable, some of them in only a matter of minutes. More recently, Ratalaika Games have delved into visual novels, a more recent phenomenon where players interactions are generally limited to selecting from a choice of texts to move the plot along. One Night Stand was one such visual novel title released a few months back, a game which could be finished in only a few minutes but had multiples endings. Visual novels are a very popular genre in Japan, one of the more engrossing titles includes Steins Gate and there seems to be a greater influx of them across the other world markets.
Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet is a visual novel title, one of the simpler visual novels out there. Syrup, a candy alchemist who runs a candy shop, finds a candy golem in her basement. This is where, depending on your choices, Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet as a game will last between 5 minutes to maybe an hour. You see you can make a choice right at the start which will end Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet very quickly, there are 10 endings in total, some bad and some good. Generally speaking you’ll probably end up naming the candy golem Gumdrop and begin your story which involves 3 other regular characters.
The five main characters are Syrup who comes across as quite cynical, Gumdrop the candy golem who has that sense of awe a child would have when they come across something new, Pastille is someone who just wants the best for everyone, Toffee who is an alley cat and finally Butterscotch who is a rival candy connoisseur. They are all likeable characters which is an important trait in a visual novel because you’ll be seeing them a lot through your journey. A game like Steins Gate has a lot of text and many occasions where you need to make a choice, in some cases not doing something will have an effect. In Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet your choices are limited, you will never have more than 3 choices to choose from and depending on your choices the amount of times you will make a choice could be limited to less than 6/7.
Graphically Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet is a beautifully bold looking game with super cute and charming protagonists. The written dialogue helps you get involved with the story but, because it is so short, whichever route you take you won’t get to invest that much of your time into Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet, which is a shame. Musically, it’s pretty unoffensive to the ears tones but it has no effect on the gameplay if you turn it off. Usually having the possibility of accessing 10 endings may seem to give Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet some longevity, but because some of the endings can be unlocked within a few minutes it negates that longevity. Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet is a reasonably fun visual novel, but like a lot of visual novels, it’s about the amount of time you invest into the story which Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet just lacks a little too much. Playing Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet is a bit like reading a short story.
Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet is a very short and cute visual novel title. The biggest issue for Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet is how short it is, even with the 10 endings to find and especially if you choose to skip through the text. Visual novels in general are one of the most basic games in terms of interaction for a gamer and Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet caters towards the less taxing of experiences. Some visual novels make you rethink your choices, this is not the case with Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet, but that shouldn’t necessarily be held against it in a negative manner. If you like visual novels then you’ll find some short lived enjoyment in Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet, if you want something more challenging and emotion inducing then you won’t find it in this candy shop.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Playstation 4 code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet Review
Gameplay - 6/10
Graphics - 6/10
Sound - 6/10
Replay Value - 6/10
In Syrup and the Ultimate Sweet, get your sweet tooth ready for some candy making hi-jinks!