The following originally had pictures both safe and not-safe for work but when transferring over the pictures kinda disappeared. For those interested I'll post the actual blogspot link that I'm using to post these reviews with the pictures at a later time (one the new user restriction lets up).
Lightning Warrior Raidy I and II Review
Game: Lightning Warrior Raidy
Released by: Jast USA
Language: english subtitles
Genre: rpg, lesbian, sex-romp, fantasy
A note before we begin: Lightning Warrior Raidy was the first attempt at the release of a translated rpg visual novel. It surprisingly succeeded to the visual novel community despite being severely flawed in many ways.
The Plot: The visual novel starts out with a travelling warrior named Raidy (who gets no backstory till the second game) arriving in a village known as Saad. Raidy finds out that monsters in a nearby tower have kidnpped the women of the village and the men who attempted to rescue them never actually return.
Raidy's job now is to attempt to rescue the girls and return them to their village. In the course of the game Raidy must travel six floors, defeat the bosses on each floor and defeat the Final Boss who resides at the top. That's it. There is no real plot to speak of in this game. The only backstory that you get on the main character is that she can wield Lightning. The villains are laughable and lack story and well if you want to play any visual novel most will have at least some time type of story regardless of how bad it is.
The most this game has in regards to plot is Raidy Rescuing women and fighting the slavers. That is it. Don't go buying this game expecting a lot (or any) of plot.
...Well okay fine I will explain a bit more of the plot. Each floor of the six floor tower is controlled by a head monster who is in charge of a different type of sexual torture. These head monsters are trying to break all the women that come to them (sometimes using the brainwashed captured men) in order to eventually give them to the Demon that lives at the top of the tower. This Demon is a tentacle monster...so you can understand a bit why they are capturing women for it.
The story has 2 main issues with it (besides the lack of real development):
1. The main issue in my opinion is how the story focuses entirely on a bad ending and a good ending. Raidy has possible chances to lose with each boss fight and is then inflicted the sexual tortures of that floor upon herself. They actually delve into this a bit too much and it kind of loses the appeal of trying to win when you also get something for losing.
2. The Good Ending is way too short. In fact the entire story is short if not non-existent. I will say this though the way Raidy beats the Demon is sheer awesome and to be honest hilarious. It's too bad the game did not focus more on that possibility for humor as there were plenty of chances for bad puns and jokes.
I also noticed that the old English way Raidy spoke during boss battles was kind of out of place. Apparently they tried to make her humble but I'm not sure it worked all that well.
Characters: This is nearly as bad as the story. There are however characters and since some of the characters do make a return in the sequel I might as well go ahead and describe them a bit.
Raidy: Sexually promiscuous, a warrior wanderer, tries to help girls, lesbian, talks in old english at certain points in game, scantily clad for no reason, believes in an eye for an eye mentality, and that sums up her character. Doesn't tell you much because I'll be honest there is not anything to tell. They left out her entire back story.
FonFon: The werewolf monster in the game and you find out she likes whipping women. Yeah she also seems to be a sadist and possibly a tsundere as well. She has no character beyond that.
Foless: My least favorite of the characters. She is a dark elf with a love for enemas. needless to say this was my least favorite aspect in both games. Her character though seemed to be a bit shy in nature and looking back on it she had a more innocent character...despite giving people enemas.
Tiss: A horned and horny demon with a love for bondage and candles. She seemed to be the natural nymphomaniac of the group. no further character traits to develop as they don't have much of a role to play.
Others: The other bosses are a one trick pony and you will never see them again.
Cubix (the Tentacle Demon): Mainly whispered about till the final floor and then you either electricum him to death or get turned into his sex slave. He's a tentacle monster...that's all you need to know to understand his motive for doing what he does. I do have to say that this was expected and not original at all. I was rather sad that despite all the effort put into the game all they could manage is a tentacle monster.
Monsters: Apparently this is what happened to some of the girls that were sexually tortured...although this plot device is thrown out the window in the second game. I will say one thing about these monsters in that this is quite possibly the best thing about the game. The designs are cute when not gorgeous and the names themselves are brilliant. The game takes everything one knows about preconceived notions of monsters and turns them into girls; often with some puns added for measure.
Gamplay: Where to begin? This game is a dungeon crawler pure and simple. Raidy goes around to different corridors and rooms looking for treasure, maps, more doors, or fighting random encounters.
The random encounters were set up so 1-3 monsters could appear randomly while walking on a floor. There 3 different monsters for each floor visited for a total of 18 or so monsters (seems low for some reason). I will talk more about these monsters in the artwork category.
Once arriving at a floor the first thing that needed to be done was to try and find a map. This is more difficult than it sounds as you do not have an inclination whatsoever of where you are when you begin a floor as there is no map anywhere until you find it. I noticed that the map would often be located near the end of a floor.
Each floor visited would have various curves of difficulty and at least one of them is completely insane for people as the map is in the middle of nowhere, the enemies are stronger than you are, and without getting proper info or weapon winning the boss battle is unobtainable.
combat: The game is supposed to have rpg elements and in combat these range from physical attacks, a magical attack, defending, potion drinking, and being a coward (running away...a lot less cowardly in this game). Raidy also has a magical attack
called thunderslash which uses MP, does damage of about half the points used and is auto-hit (which becomes vitally important at points in the game where you may barely ever hit an enemy. Raidy has a special attack but so do monsters and unlike Raidy their damage is fixed and don't decrease with use (which does for Raidy). Raidy may get potions from treasure and item drops for beating enemies but with their abilities they are usually always needed.
These special attacks are quite possibly the game breaker as it increases the difficulty curve beyond reason. The hardest part of Lightning Warrior Raidy I is level 3. Anyone who has played the game will tell you the same. The floor is huge compared to all the other levels and every monster has a special attack and you will have to grind your ass off to even get through it. The experience earned at floor 3 will take a while and it is not even until floor 5 that grinding becomes possible/easy.
The non-combat portion of the gameplay is extremely simple in design but well executed (sort of). The floor layout becomes progressively more difficult as you advance and i becomes a challenge to figure it out. The game also had puzzles which involved items and movement traps which could be a hassle even after managing to obtain a map of the floor
(invisible doors/walls with no indicators). There are also circumstances in the game where Raidy is given visual novel style choices and must ask characters, rescued girls, etc... about a number of different issues and if you do not repeatedly ask for a while you may not get a response. This is particularly annoying as sometimes the only way to beat a boss is heard from these.
Graphics: I have to give this series serious credit that despite all its flaws it can still manage to have one area in it that is stunning in every detail. The artwork is rather good. The game focuses on the monster characters and considering they are female and often in skimpy outfits it should not surprise anyone when the reward for defeating the monster is not to kill but rather to make it take sexy nude poses. You can say what you will but most of the people that end up buying this game buy it specifically for these moe monsters. The creatures range from minotaurs, skeletons, undine, and even a dragon; all in the form of sexy women. It is not a stretch to say that many of the monsters fought were more artistically appealing than the actual boss characters.
The design of the dungeon on the other hand was not fun to look out. Same empty hallway after empty hallway with a door occasionally. It's not that it had no real art to it (except for the boring ventures into the same passage over and over again) but rather it makes no sense. Why would anything actually live in this dungeon? How would they live there? There is no food, water, storage space, etc... it just seems to be monster filled passages for all but the torture chambers and the jail cells. The game is far superior to many dungeon crawlers of a similar nature and it does give the sense of foreboding and doom so I would say it succeeds in the art department in the very least.
Music and Sound: The background music in the game is good and tolerable. There are a few pretty good pieces and the rest manage to keep from being annoying (although the battle music comes close). I say this but the music really is just mediocre at best. It's not bad by any standard but it is forgettable. I'm personally a fan of the title song which is the only song I think is above the mediocre category.
Ero: Well the game is high in the non-consensual girl-on-girl sex and torture category. An emphasis on the torture aspect. Oddly enough for everything the game actually is it is not nearly as extreme as one might think the game would turn out to be. The majority of the game is just dungeon crawling and stripping the monster girls. Once you get to the boss for each level it ranges from whipping, candles, enemas (needless to say but this is shit), bondage, and other S&M tendencies and then of course we have the tentacle demon at the end. There is maybe one instance (possibly two) in the entire game in which men come into the picture...sadly it is unavoidable as it is plot oriented.
Extras: The game in order to thank you for playing does give you an extra menu which prior to its release was relatively rare in visual novels. It has the CG, scenario, and music files option. This way you can listen to the title song over and over again...or stay on the title menu.
Overall: I will admit that the game is not for everyone and a lot of people will actually hate it. However if you can manage dealing with a frustratingly difficult dungeon crawler with cute monster girls and fetish sex scenes then you may want to pick up this game. It's a sex-romp game minus a lot of the heterosexuality. It's one of the first games to feature dungeon crawling so despite being a mediocre game you have to give it credit for at least trying.
Recommended to: people who like monster girls (best feature in the game), S&M, girls raping girls, and dungeon crawling.
Not Recommended to: Anyone who likes plot in their games, anyone with a squeamish side for S&M or enemas.
Overall Rating: 5 out of 10
scroll down for a review of the sequel.
Game: Lightning Warrior Raidy II
Released by: Jast USA
Language: english subtitles
Genre: rpg, lesbian, sex-romp, fantasy
Lightning Warrior Raidy 2: Temple of Desire has a title that sounds like it belongs in an Indiana Jones film rather than a hentai game. The sequel to the "acclaimed" first game and is just as much a sexy dungeon crawler as the previous.
The Plot: Lightning Warrior Raidy II takes place after the events of Lightning Warrior Raidy I. Raidy is traveling across the desert and while traveling stumbles across the desert town/city (?) of Lake Blue. Upon arriving in the little town she witnesses bandits trying to kidnap a girl. Raidy steps in and finds out that bandits are kidnapping hosts for an unknown reason. She quickly finds out that most of the villagers being kidnapped are being made into sex slaves. Raidy being Raidy decides to help them out and must deal with new boss enemies, the return of old foes, and something that might actually give us her background.
I have to say that the plot of this game is slightly better than the previous. In the last we got hardly any info other than she went into a dungeon to save people and defeat the demon. In this one we are actually given more details on the people she's helping and even begins to create a background story for Raidy.
Changes: there is a number of new content and since the majority of the game besides that listed below is more or less the same from the first here's what's new.
Characters: The characters in this game are more or less the same as the last. We have some characters making a return and we have some new characters that have some odd fetishes. The villains are the same sort and mainly acting under the guise of bandits or monsters. There really is no reason to go more into the characters as they have little character to begin with...unless you count lesbian maid, S&M girl, a thief, and girl who likes being gang-raped as personalities. It does however introduce Junk the only male Raidy willingly has sex with. I got visions of Rance when reading Junk's lines for some reason but whatever.
Shops/Town: In Raidy II we finally get a town to venture into and as mentioned above the
townsfolk are a perverted lot. The shops in town include an Inn where you can masturbate, dream of perverted scenes, chat up with the female (lesbian) innkeeper, and finally you can "rest". Free healing is always a plus and there is a less of an emphasis on the use of potions in order to stay alive in this game as opposed to the first. The second shop is the bar where Raidy can get her information and talk with both the thief girl, the bar maid (with an interesting hobby), and Junk. The third shop is the armour and weapons shop and like the rest of the townsfolk the owner has some odd habits. The armor/weapon shop though drastically increases the ability to succeed at this game if you wish to buy anything but for the most part everything of necessity can be found in dungeon. The fourth and final shop is the potions shop which means you no longer need to grind monsters to death in order to acquire potions to heal health and mana.
Maps: The second noticeable difference is the map seen in the beginning of the game. It is a world map and now rather than just having the one dungeon in a tower of druaga manner there are 3 dungeons. The lack of other areas and less than 3 dungeons is one of the games flaws though.
If you played the first game in this series then you probably remember the map finding difficulty in the first game. Located near the end of each floor (making it useless) and needing to be found before able to use? Well this time around the map system actually fills in for you as you move around. This means you will do a lot less backtracking...or not. There is still a ton of backtracking as certain items may be found in completely different locations...and you are not given an option to leave until you get to the 5th floor. Thankfully though you can leave by walking the long way back or by waiting till the 5th floor which will transport you outside. Everything else though is the same.
Combat: Combat has changed only a little since the first game. In order to consume MP you now must use the charge option and wait to use a special attack on your next turn. Charging introduces a feature called the power bar. The longer you charge the more damage you can do. The bosses in this game are extremely easy because of this mechanism. Charge enough and then attack. If you want to make it a bit more difficult though you could always limit yourself to how much you can charge at once...but most people probably won't do this.
Bosses: In some boss battles you will have been required to find a special item to proceed. If you decide to go against a boss and do not have the item you get a game over scene and must reload. Not all the bosses though require a special item so it becomes tedious to figure out which one do and which ones do not have to have a special item. Word to the wise fill out the entire map and save the boss battle till you do.
Talking: At certain points in the game you will be required to speak to people. Often times the magical number is 3. Be sure to talk to everyone 3 times or as often as you can to make sure you get all the info (and in some cases items) necessary to continue on.
Armor/Weapons System: A new addition to the series is the armor/weapon system. In this game there are a lot more items that in the past game. Some of the items will have different powers. The sexcalibur even has sex scenes attached to it if you know where to go. Equipping items has changed a bit. You are now given a choice between a 1 hand weapon (and often a shield for defense) or a 2 hand weapon and strength/defense will change depending on what you take. The magic items have a slot of their own and slightly boost an attribute. Choosing speed makes Raidy more likely to attack first or in succession.
Animation: This is often considered a highlight among the visual novel community but I honestly could care less. The animated scenes added in Raidy 2 are for the most part circular and even by the end of the game the animated scenes become far less frequent. I also think the art suffers a bit when entering the scenes but for some this will probably wonderful for them. The majority of the game is still CG and that's the way I like it.
Dungeons: I mentioned that there are now 3 or so dungeons but some of them have more than 5 floors and all of them have more monster girls to fight and strip. I did however notice that the game was a bit more tame (odd I know) or possibly reluctant to show the nether-regions of all the girls shown. To be honest I kinda preferred a varying mix although it did make me wonder why they weren't being show when the game itself was a hentai game full of sex and the like. They also reused a few of the creatures...although I believe most of the monsters reused had new scenes.
Audio: The music is a lot more varied this time around and a bit better than before but still mediocre...although the Opening song is probably the best. I like that they gave you more options (the music changes depending on dungeon/town) for battles and the like. It prevents you from bashing your head in at least.
Voicework: I purposely did not mention much of the voicework in the last game because it's decent enough and the only real thing of mention was Raidy's schoolgirl voice. She has yet to lose the schoolgirl voice in the second game. The other cast of characters all seem to have slightly better voices (or at least voices suited for their roles). The last game had full audio track but this one is only voiced in some locations. To make matters worse the voicetrack seems slightly off. The voice recordings sound like they were taken on an old tape recorder, and then replayed from the tape recorder by holding it up to the microphone and voila. Instant voices. I actually recommend playing the game without voices as they are so random in their use and scratchy that they aren't really needed.
Money: I feel as if this is one of the few areas of the game that excelled. It is not a major attribute by a long shot...not for this game anyway, but it never fell into the tired old mechanism of most RPG games released of late. Money never becomes "no object" until the last dungeon. I am saddened by the loss of monsters dropping random items though...thankfully they now drop gold instead.
Enemy Combat: One of the most annoying things in the early stages of the game for people playing is the fact that enemies have special attacks just like Raidy does. In the beginning of the game they are limited mainly to nothing or stealing gold (which in the beginning of the game is terribly irritating). Later in the game though their attacks may take MP or charge an extremely powerful attack that you should probably run from. The enemies also always attack first. Regardless of the level Raidy is at or the speed they will nearly always attack first.
Difficulty: The first Raidy game had the difficulty on the high end of the hard spectrum whereas this game seems to be the opposite. It's quite difficult for the first few floors in the first dungeon but then spikes to ridiculously easy and depending on how one plays may only barely rub out to normal by the end game. So not as difficult as its predecessor but not as tedious either.
Length: Raidy II is by no means a full length RPG game of the modern form of the word. If anything I would say it takes a day total of non-stop playing)...around 20 hours.
Ero: The game continues to be high in the non-consensual girl-on-girl/monster/Junk sex category and torture is definitely returning. The return of the 4 boss characters from the first game though means that those particular fetishes are back as well. It does have a few new additions in the fetish category like snake/spider bestiality, pseudo-furry, more tentacles, lots of S&M, masturbation (Raidy by herself and Raidy with clone), bondage, whipping, candles, enemas, enemas, master/servant, something close to loli-ish, yuri, plant sex?, and just a bunch of other odd sexual fetishes. The majority of these are not avoidable either...unless you skip through which is always an option. So the ero level has raised greatly in this game.
Overall: Raidy II is not for everyone and many people will hate it because of the content but if you can manage to deal with it the art is pretty good. The dungeons have been made bigger and in many cases easier, the amount of content is nearly triple the first game, the combat is more evolved, and overall the game is just better than its predecessor...if you can mange dealing with the weird fetishes. The game does better in nearly every category and before when we had a difficult game we are now given an easier (and larger) game. Lightning Warrior Raidy II is decent dungeon crawler but with Jast USA's upcoming lineup you might be able to find something a bit less fetish heavy. If these type of fetishes are your thing though Raidy will not disappoint.
Recommended to: people who like monster girls (best feature in the game), S&M, girls raping girls, weird fetishes, and dungeon crawling.
Not Recommended to: Anyone who likes plot in their games, anyone with a squeamish side for any of the previously mentioned fetishes.
Overall Rating: 6 out of 10