In Stars and Time can be unforgiving, but if you're a sucker for story-driven RPGs with roguelite mechanics and tricky puzzles, you won't find many better options out there. It's a difficult game to beat quickly, with our initial run taking us just over the 45-hour mark. Aside from the small problems like some unclear visual cues and minor lag issues, the game plays brilliantly. The characters are loveable and feel incredibly authentic, and the story is deeply engaging. Just be warned - almost every item becomes important at some stage. There are heaps of rooms, hidden passages, and corridors, and you'll need to remember where everything is if you want to progress. Keep a pen and paper handy.
Despite these problems, the overall game was still fun. It was rather short, with our playthrough taking us just over the two-and-a-half-hour mark, so the issues didn't have time to grate on us. If you want to see all the endings, you'll either need to rely on auto-saves or replay the entire game. If you're a fan of visual novels and witchy games specifically, though, the gorgeous art and meditative gameplay loop are sure to outshine the issues we've highlighted. For the right people, this game will be enchanting.
The Tarot deckbuilding aspect is present and correct here, but the wide variety of Witches and the way their stories intertwine is where The Cosmic Wheel Sisterhood really shines. Every being that you encounter has a purpose in this story, and all the threads twist together to make a truly beautiful tapestry. Being locked down narrative paths without the ability to return might not be for everyone, but it's a moot point when the story is this good - every playthrough will feel like a brand-new experience.
The visuals are fun and lively, and the sound design is great. The marbles sound incredibly realistic and the noise of them on ice is oddly satisfying. While the gameplay loop of this title might not be for everyone, it does exactly what it says on the tin. It’s a vibrant, snappy game that offers a nice handful of content for both single players and people looking to play with friends. Super Monkey Ball fans will get a kick out of it, too.